Open Thread 1/24

Hey, remember back in December when I said I’d be switching to Monday-Tuesday-Thursday open threads in the new year? OK, me either, but that’s how it’s going to be for a while.

- Problems with the tunnel machine.

- Thank you not just for your work, but for your service to all women and families. You’re making the world a better place. Perhaps you already knew that. But I think it’s worth saying.

- Only one side hates science.

- Build better bike infrastructure for the SoDo arena.

- It doesn’t even rhyme.

- Some modest goals for a 2nd term.

Comments

  1. 1

    spews:


    WASHINGTON — Progressive senators working to dramatically alter Senate rules were defeated on Thursday, with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) and his counterpart, Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), set to announce a series of compromise reforms on the Senate floor that fall far short of the demands. The language of the deal was obtained by HuffPost and can be read here and here.

    The pressure from the liberal senators, led by Oregon Democrat Jeff Merkley and backed by a major coalition of progressive groups, created the political space for Reid to cut the deal with McConnell, which does include changes to how the Senate operates, but leaves a fundamental feature, the silent filibuster, in place.

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/.....f=politics

    Good thing for Harry that filibuster stays intact. He’ll need it:

    WASHINGTON (AP) — More than half the Senate on Wednesday urged quick approval of the Keystone XL oil pipeline, ramping up pressure on President Obama to move ahead with the project just days after he promised in his inaugural address to respond vigorously to the threat of climate change.

    A letter signed by 53 senators said Nebraska Gov. Dave Heineman’s approval of a revised route through his state puts the long-delayed project squarely in the president’s hands.

    http://www.usatoday.com/story/.....e/1860003/

  2. 2

    spews:

    Good thing for the progressives that silent filibuster stays intact. They’ll need it.

    That pipeline goes through – it’s game over for the planet.

  3. 3

    spews:

    Oh my, that Obama’s spent this country into the ditch.

    Now, a fair critique here would be that if Obama had his way, we would’ve spent even more, as we would’ve passed more stimulus, including the American Jobs Act. That’s true. But if Obama had his way, we also would’ve done more deficit reduction, as his preferred tax increase was $1.6 trillion rather than $600 billion, and he’s proposed hundreds of billions in spending cuts that Congress hasn’t adopted.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/.....wo-charts/

  4. 4

    spews:

    @ 2

    That pipeline goes through – it’s game over for the planet.

    YLB, step away from the crackpipe.

    That pipeline goes through and the US will obtain much more of its petroleum from the same continent rather than from abroad.

    That pipeline doesn’t go through and a different one will be built instead, going somewhere else.

    A pipeline will be built. Only question is where it runs.

  5. 7

    Steve spews:

    Observation of the week. When the subject turns to tunnels or arenas, progressives can be, um, unpleasant towards each other, sort of a “Jane, you arrogant slut!” kind of thing.

    Bob, you seem to have caught on that there are certain threads where you can just sit back and watch us devour each other.

  6. 10

    spews:

    That pipeline goes through and the US will obtain much more of its petroleum from the same continent rather than from abroad.

    That pipeline doesn’t go through and a different one will be built instead, going somewhere else.

    A pipeline will be built. Only question is where it runs.

    Yawwwn. Bullshit… Tar sands are very costly to exploit.. Only other place where it can run is over the Rockies to BC.. Prohibitively expensive.

    The Alberta tar sands is one of the largest deposits of carbon on the planet and your ilk wants it in the atmosphere where it will “do no harm”..

    This country is already on track to importing less oil..

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/.....ince-1987/

    Bob put away the white lightning.. Nothing will numb the pain of being so interminably wrong about so many things.

  7. 12

    spews:

    @ 10

    Tar sands are very costly to exploit.. Only other place where it can run is over the Rockies to BC.. Prohibitively expensive.

    I guess cost is relative and if the choice is spending money to fund one’s own expansion or funding America’s spending idiocy, China’s in the driver’s seat on that decision:

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/.....story.html

    and

    The International Energy Agency reports that in 2015 the United States will be outperformed by the European Union as the largest importer of oil in the world, but China does not fall far behind. According to the Huston Chronicle China has already invested $15 billion in the Canadian oil sands. The ever-growing Chinese market is always in search of sources of new energy. The Canadian company, Enbridge has proposed an oil pipeline to deliver crude oil sands from Alberta across the Canadian Rockies to the Pacific coast where it could be easily transported to the Far East.

    While Americans protest the construction of a pipeline from Alberta to Texas, Chinese investors, such as Sinopec, are ready to take the unwanted tar sands to help fuel the Chinese economy. The oil sands are not the key to America’s energy independence, but it is a source of energy from a friendly and reliable neighbor. While the United States needs to pursue cleaner energy sources, it can not, and should not pass up the opportunity to refine and distribute Canadian tar sands oil.

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/.....21471.html

    China may not agree that it’s prohibitively expensive, YLB. Funny, a few months ago when Canada’s premier began making statements about selling oil to places like China if the Keystone roadblock didn’t go away soon, I don’t remember too many people accusing him of bluffing.

    Maybe that’s because he wasn’t.

  8. 15

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    Looks like Keystone XL will be built on the route everyone expected according to the original schedule. Yawn. Move along, folks, nothing to see here.

  9. 16

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    Keystone XL will add 20 permanent jobs to the economy. Not quite enough to offset the damage done by crooked bankers.

  10. 17

    spews:

    @ 16

    You forgot to mention that it will allow Obama to take credit for approval and the resultant benefits to the American economy.

    All he’s gotta do is sign the bill. Then watch MSNBC ‘yawn’ and ‘move along’. Won’t be a peep out of Chris Matthews.

  11. 18

    spews:

    @ 16

    If you want to pull your head out of your ass and breathe, RR, you could check a fact or two. Extrapolate from this, perhaps:

    Alyeska Pipeline Service Company operates and maintains the 800-mile Trans Alaska Pipeline System (TAPS). Formed in 1970 to design and build the pipeline, Alyeska Pipeline acts as agent for the five companies who own the Trans Alaska pipeline. Almost 811 employees work in Anchorage, Fairbanks, Valdez and field locations along the pipeline.

    http://www.alyeska-pipe.com/Employment

  12. 19

    spews:

    12 – yawwwnn.. Let the Canadians and their Chinese enablers en-devour to do silly and destructive things.. Myself as a citizen of this country doesn’t want that here.

  13. 20

    spews:

    @ 19

    I’ll take that as a walkback of your comment about the cost-prohibitive nature of a pipeline to the Pacific from Alberta.

    YLB’s own ‘Emily Litella’ @9 moment. How apropos.

  14. 21

    spews:

    I’ll take that as a walkback

    groannn.. Nope.. not at all…

    But take it any way you please. That alcohol is highly addictive Bob.

    And don’t confuse “nevermind” with “why did I even bother”…

  15. 22

    ArtFart spews:

    “Tar sands are very costly to exploit..”

    No problem as long as the finished product commands a high enough price…somewhere.

    “This country is already on track to importing less oil..”

    So what? The Keystone XL pipeline isn’t about that. Don’t look now, but refineries in the Midwest have been gobbling up Candaian tar sands squeezin’s for years (which nobody seemed to raise so much as a whimper about). The price we pay for the finished product will doubtless rise once we’re bidding against the Chinese for the stuff to be pumped to the Gulf Coast and shuffled off to the other side of the planet in ever larger supertankers…Hey–did any of you mugs ever wonder about the real reason for widening the Panama Canal?

  16. 23

    Steve spews:

    @14 I have a current “cultural experience” that’s becoming kind of interesting.

    @19 By the way, YLB, we started a charity. We create music videos and give all of the rights to other charities. We’ve started our next project for a charity that builds and runs schools in remote Ugandan villages. Instead of a surprise as with Rachel’s foundation, we work with the other charities from the start. They’ll be filming scenes for the video in Uganda next month. Some instruments from Uganda should arrive today. We could very well end up in Uganda ourselves before this one is over.

    It’s kind of clever in that we don’t require monetary donations to get by, we just give our creativity and talent and have some fun time together in the studio. What we are interested in soliciting is the participation of other people with musical or video talent who would be interested in spending a few hours helping a worthwhile charity.

    We’ll receive some legal advice soon on setting up as a 501(c)(3)private foundation. That’d be for other participants if they need it, also in case we start selling downloads to help some cause. We’ll also confirm whether or not the receiving charity has to report the music video as something of value and, if so, how much. Anyways, we have no intentions of writing off any of our own time or expense.

    The mix is finally done for Rachel’s song and we’re about to choose a mastering engineer. A local company is footing the bill because it’s for Rachel, so we can use anybody in the world we want. We’re looking at Abbey Road and Death Cab’s engineer in Phoenix. We could be receiving some hi-rez Rachel images and HD video soon from her Mom to take her video to HD level. I made the one you saw from downloads. I’m getting much better at video editing and I’d like another shot at that one.

    I tell you what, music has never been so rewarding before for any of us. First the very deep appreciation that Rachel’s Mom and family has expressed and now this Ugandan charity is jumping up and down with joy, they’re so thrilled that we’re doing the same for them.

  17. 24

    spews:

    22 – Everything I’ve read says that blocking the pipeline means the expansion of extraction from the tar sands is slowed considerably.

    It will likely be approved so we’ll continue to push other means of making it irrelevant (and a financial disaster for its backers) like continued advances in end-use efficiency and hope it’s not too late for our kids’ future.

  18. 26

    Steve spews:

    “Tar sands are very costly to exploit..”

    When I lived in Boulder during the early 1970′s there was serious proposals to go after Colorado’s shale deposits using underground nukes. That one obviously didn’t get anywhere.

  19. 28

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    How does an arctic pipeline built in 1970 tell us anything about how many people will be employed by an automated temperate zone pipeline built in 2013-14? Are you idiotic enough to assume some sort of cause-and-effect relationship exists between Alyeska and Keystone?

  20. 29

    spews:

    “As I said, I intend to move forward a budget resolution through the Senate to deal with the sequestration replacement and to set appropriations levels,” Murray said. “The House Republicans can’t have it both ways. If they want us [to] — and we want to — move a budget through regular process, then they can’t have brinkmanship that they manufacture for the next six months.”

    http://www.rollcall.com/news/m......html?pg=2

    Better hurry up with that budget resolution then, Patty. You’ve had nearly three years. Any time now.

  21. 30

    spews:

    @ 28

    “Are you idiotic enough to assume some sort of cause-and-effect relationship exists between Alyeska and Keystone?”

    I’m smart enough to know that thousands of jobs will be created during construction and that your estimate of maintenance jobs is probably off by a factor of a hundred.

    I know you misunderstood and didn’t pick up on 800 jobs for 800 miles in Alaska, and extrapolate from there.

    I know that QE isn’t helping any more and that eventually the economy has to grow on its own. Enabling it to do so by creating a continuing supply of domestic energy and further promoting our trade relationship with our northern neighbor makes more sense than bringing the oil through Iran’s strait and across the Pacific.

    My guess is that a pipeline in a warm climate might even require more maintenance and observation than one in a cold one, but I don’t know.

    You don’t know, either. The difference is, I didn’t say something mindnumbingly stupid @ 16 about the long-term job prospects at Keystone.

  22. 31

    str8eight spews:

    re 30: “That pipeline goes through and the US will obtain much more of its petroleum from the same continent rather than from abroad.”

    But this statement is ‘mind-numbingly stupid’. I won’t say why just yet because I want to see you posture and sneer before I shut you down.

  23. 32

    spews:

    @ 31

    Hmm.

    Is it something we’re going to refine and ship back rather than use ourselves? Or is it an issue of how much constitutes ‘much more’?

    If I tossed you a hanging curve, you are obligated to crush it.

  24. 33

    str8eight spews:

    Is it something we’re going to refine and ship back rather than use ourselves? Or is it an issue of how much constitutes ‘much more’?

    Neither—-

    “Need for Keystone XL Shrinking as Industry Looks to Export US Crude Oil”

    Within the U.S. oil industry, however, the hot topic these days is not the nation’s need to import Canadian oil—it’s the possibility of exporting crude oil produced in the United States.

    “A paradigm shift happens when reality smacks you upside the head, and reality is now smacking us upside the head,” said Mark Mills, a senior fellow of theManhattan Institute for Policy Research, a conservative, free-market think tank. “We’re about to have a gusher of oil.”

    http://truth-out.org/news/item.....-crude-oil

    VVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVV:D

  25. 34

    UndercoverBrother spews:

    thanks for the love & post to Rebecca’s site.

    very true that the war on science is being fought by only the christianfacists in the US.

  26. 36

    Michael spews:

    “Tar sands are very costly to exploit..”

    Tar sands, deep water drilling, fracking, and so on all have a break even point of around $80 a barrel.

  27. 37

    Michael spews:

    Funny, a few months ago when Canada’s premier began making statements about selling oil to places like China

    A few months ago? A few months ago China had already bought up future production of some of the tar sands production.

    You’re making a few mistakes here.

    1. You’re assuming that the Keystone pipeline wont get built. It most likely will. The objections within the Obama admin and congress were about the route and permitting process, not wether or not to build it.

    2. It’s an either or situation with China. As in, they’ll either sell it to China or sell it to the US. The pipeline to the Pacific and the Keystone pipeline are to two different fields. It’s not either/or.

    3. The pipeline to the Pacific Coast faces far greater hurdles and opposition than Keystone does and is far more likely to be canceled.

    There’s a bunch more, but that’s all I have time for today.

  28. 38

    spews:

    @ 33

    Awful lot of possibility and could be in that link. You’d think that we’d hear some of those Democrat senators spewing it if it were more than a dream.

    Truth-out. They’re the ones who predicted Rove being frog-marched out of the White House, right?

  29. 39

    spews:

    Wisconsin’s budget picture brightened Thursday, with new estimates that show a surplus will grow to $484 million, giving Republicans and Gov. Scott Walker even more room to pursue their tax cutting agenda.

    The estimate from the nonpartisan Legislative Fiscal Bureau was nearly $137 million better than one Walker’s administration released in November. The numbers will be used by Walker as he puts the final touches on his two-year spending plan, which he’s set to unveil on Feb. 20.

    Read more: http://host.madison.com/news/l.....z2Iwh1GziQ

    YLB reminding us that Walker hasn’t created 250,000 new jobs yet in

    3…
    2…
    1…

  30. 40

    spews:

    Wisconsin’s budget picture brightened Thursday, with new estimates that show a surplus

    Just shows that WI never was that much in budget trouble to begin with.. There goes those anti-union excuses..

    Where’s the jobs supposed to be at by this time?? In trouble obviously. The wrong guy won the White House.

    Lots of fast food, retail and hospitality I know..

    And more tax cuts for the wealthy and corporations on the way…

    Mission accomplished.

  31. 41

    spews:

    Gee if China is so rich as Bob implies then I guess we’re not getting much benefit from those tar sands no matter where a pipeline is built.

    Whatever..

  32. 42

    rhp6033 spews:

    I’m wondering what will happen once China discovers oil reserves (tar sands, shale, or traditional) on their own territory. There goes the big bucks spent on the pipeline up in smoke, with oil down to about $30 per barrel.

  33. 44

    ArtFart spews:

    @41 “Gee if China is so rich as Bob implies then I guess we’re not getting much benefit from those tar sands no matter where a pipeline is built.”

    DING-DING-DING-DING-DING-DING!!!!!!

    Give that man a stuffed tortoise!

  34. 45

    rhp6033 spews:

    Sen. Saxy Chambliss (R-GA) is retiring. It seems he made the fatal error of speaking out against Grover Norquist, and now face Tea-Party primarychallengers from the Georgia House Delegation. Chamblis’ sin? The following statement:

    Chambliss criticized anti-tax activist Grover Norquist in November, saying he cared about his country more than him. “Norquist has no plan to pay this debt down. His plan says you continue to add to the debt, and I just have a fundamental disagreement about that and I’m willing to do the right thing and let the political consequences take care of themselves,” he said at the time.

    So facing a well-organized and funded primary challenge, Chamblis chooses to retire rather than to do what other Republicans have done to save their seats (pun intended): Go on Rush Limbaough’s show, grovel, say they have mended their ways, and beg forgiveness.

    Sen. Chamblis will retire

  35. 46

    Steve spews:

    It looks like Republicans will never learn.

    From New Mexico House Bill 206, introduced by a Republican, regarding rape victims, abortion and the proposed felony crime of tampering with fetal evidence. Gawd.

    “Tampering with evidence shall include procuring or facilitating an abortion, or compelling or coercing another to obtain an abortion, of a fetus that is the result of criminal sexual penetration or incest with the intent to destroy evidence of the crime”

  36. 47

    Meme1 spews:

    @38,

    After every inane peice of BS you spewed about the Romney tsunami, you pretty much gave up any chance of credibility for mocking other peoples predictive ability,

    You’re really trying to defend Rove?

    The guy who popped a blood vessel on election night when the public saw him pull a David Copperfield level trick and made over $300 million disappear?

    Nice try, but once again coming up short.

  37. 48

    MikeBoyScout spews:

    Sad news for Teabagging WINGNUTS today

    Fox News and Sarah Palin Part Ways

    She last appeared on Fox News in mid-December. She continues to publish comments on Facebook, though, most recently on Thursday.

    I think long form type journalism was never right for Mooselini. Her thoughts are best and most completely expressed in 140 characters or less.