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pecosbob

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Member since: Wed Oct 26, 2016, 05:18 PM
Number of posts: 3,658

About Me

Don't take what I say too seriously...I'm a dumb-ass.

Journal Archives

So where are all the storm casualties in Alabama?

crickets...

Monsanto Emails Show Employees Wanted to "Beat the Shit" Out of Concerned Moms

Gotta love unleashed capitalism...

https://truthout.org/articles/monsanto-emails-show-employees-wanted-to-beat-the-shit-out-of-concerned-moms/

long time ago in a galaxy far, far away, thoughts of maybe becoming a lawyer someday led me into paralegal work at a number of law firms on both coasts. As a litigation paralegal, I worked on cases involving major automakers, pharmaceutical giants, international banks, large pipeline manufacturers and other sundry corporate monstrosities. The work, by and large, was a grueling paper chase involving long archaeological digs through massive post-subpoena document dumps. You rarely came across The Document that would turn the whole case on its ear, but it happened every so often, and when it did, the cheers from the cubicles would rattle the fluorescent lights: Plowing through all the boxes, dust bunnies, ink stains, paper cuts and miles of memos had finally paid off!


The story of this document dump begins in June of 2013, when a grassroots advocacy group called Moms Across America published an open letter to then-Monsanto CEO Hugh Grant about the dangers involved in his company’s wide distribution of genetically modified (GM) foods and the use of their pesticide, Roundup.

“We ask you to have the courage to acknowledge that GM practices and Roundup are hurting our world,” read the letter. “We have seen the recent and new scientific studies on the impact of GMOs and Glyphosate with links to autism, Alzheimer’s, food allergies, liver cancer, IBS, breast cancer in humans and possibly mental illness and we have witnessed the results firsthand in our kids.”

As the resulting emails show, these accusations did not sit well with the folks at Monsanto. One conversation between Monsanto scientist Dr. Daniel Goldstein and two outside consultants — Bruce Chassy, a former professor at the University of Illinois and Wayne Parrot, a crop scientist at the University of Georgia — stand out in stark relief.

Dr. Goldstein stated that Moms Across America was making “a pretty nasty looking set of allegations,” and he had been arguing for a week that the company should “beat the shit out of them” in return. Chassy was all for attacking the group, but Parrot was less sanguine. “You can’t beat up mothers,” he wrote, “even if they are dumb mothers but you can beat up the organic industry.”

That conversation verged into a discussion of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), which was at the time holding a public comment period regarding supermarket produce and glyphosate, the ingredient in Roundup that has been directly connected to incidents of cancer. “BTW,” wrote Dr. Goldstein, “a minor tolerance increase petition for glyphosate on specialty crops got 10,821 negative public comments in the last 48 hours — NOT form letters — individually written comments. We’re on our way to being corporate road kill.”

read more at https://truthout.org/articles/monsanto-emails-show-employees-wanted-to-beat-the-shit-out-of-concerned-moms/

Time is running out to act on climate change...an editorial from the Las Vegas Sun by Harry Reid

https://lasvegassun.com/news/2019/sep/01/time-is-running-out-to-act-on-climate-change/

Editor’s note: As he does every August, Brian Greenspun is taking some time off and is turning over his Where I Stand column to others. Today’s guest columnist is former U.S. Sen. Harry Reid.

Growing up in the Mojave Desert in the mining town of Searchlight, I never understood the sensitivity of the environment — even as mining ravaged the beautiful desert landscape.

There were holes everywhere. There were tunnels. There were shafts, some vertical and some at various angles. But each was a disturbance of the desert surface. And, to top it off, 99 percent of the diggings produced no gold or other precious metals. It was mostly for nothing.

It was only as an adult that I began to realize the fragility of my place of birth.

Today, the Nevada deserts — along with environments throughout the country and the world — are facing threats much greater than bulldozers, shovels and unscrupulous mining operations. That threat is climate change.


I won’t be around to see the worst impacts of climate change, but my children, grandchildren and countless families around the world will be. They’ll suffer the brunt of this crisis. They’ll bear the burden of cleaning up my generation’s mess.

We can, and must, do better.


read more at https://lasvegassun.com/news/2019/sep/01/time-is-running-out-to-act-on-climate-change/

The Sun refuses to kneel before Sheldon Adelson

In 1950 the Las Vegas Free Press began publishing founded by the International Typographical Union, which consisted of typesetters locked out of the Las Vegas Review-Journal for trying to unionize.

Despite the presence of longtime Review-Journal editors Sherwin Garside and Ray Germain, who also were partners in a local printing company, the Free Press was in trouble, with advertisers shying away from it, except for the Desert Inn's director of publicity, Hank Greenspun. Greenspun's crusading instincts and his unhappy relationship with Desert Inn operator Moe Dalitz prompted him to buy the Free Press, expand it to five days a week, and rename it the Las Vegas Sun, as of July 1, 1950. He remained publisher and, except for the brief tenure of longtime aide Adam Yacenda, editor until his death in 1989.

By the time Greenspun died in 1989, the R-J almost totally dominated the region. While he was dying, Greenspun approved his family's negotiation of a Joint Operating Agreement with the Review-Journal. When it was completed the next year, the Greenspuns owned ten percent of the combined operation. The R-J completely controlled the business side while the Sun maintained its editorial independence in weekday afternoon editions and sections published inside the R-J on weekends and holidays.

By 2005, the Sun's circulation in the afternoon, a largely dying market for newspapers, was less than twenty-eight thousand. Its influence rested on its history and the significance of Brian Greenspun, who followed in his father's footsteps as a developer and political figure. The Sun also took advantage of a new opportunity to influence Las Vegans. Given its declining circulation, the Greenspuns and the Review-Journal negotiated a change in the Joint Operating Agreement. As of September 30, 2005, the Sun would appear as a six-to ten-page section each morning in the R-J. While it no longer appeared as a separate publication, its stories, columns, and features now would reach more than 160,000 subscribers.

http://www.onlinenevada.org/articles/las-vegas-sun


Here's an editorial from the Review-Journal about their reasons for terminating the JOA.

https://www.reviewjournal.com/opinion/editorial-why-we-want-to-stop-printing-the-las-vegas-sun-1837661/

And one from the Las Vegas Sun.

https://lasvegassun.com/news/2019/sep/01/the-sun-refuses-to-kneel-before-sheldon-adelson-an/

I grew up in Houston and watched as the only progressive newspaper in the city was bought and silenced by the local Hearst paper the Houston Chronicle. Don't want to see it happen again here in Nevada. The Sun gives a voice to the few here willing to criticize Adelson and some of the more hare-brained ideas developed by the casinos. Would be a sad thing for it to end.

Koch lackey Adam Laxalt raising $ in Nevada

Former Nevada Attorney General and loser of the 2018 NV gubernatorial race is out in the boonies rising money for his Morning in Nevada PAC. Not sure what he's going to run for this time, but I sure know we don't want him.

The Laxalt name runs deep in Nevada politics and still carries a lot of weight, but not for him. In a nutshell he's the bastard son of former U.S. Senator Pete Domenici from Arizona and former Nevada Governor and U.S Senator from Nevada Paul Laxalt's daughter Michelle Laxalt. Michelle Laxalt raised him as a single mother and his paternity was never revealed until he was an adult. There's a lot of bad blood between these folks (no pun intended). See the wiki for his story and many of his slimy political connections...https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adam_Laxalt.

https://www.nevadacurrent.com/blog/former-ms-nevada-added-to-roster-at-laxalt-political-picnic/

Former Nevada Attorney General and failed Republican gubernatorial candidate Adam Laxalt’s political action committee has added a former Ms. Nevada to the roster of speakers at the PAC’s “Basque Fry.”

Las Vegan Katie Williams was stripped of her Nevada title by the Ms. America pageant earlier this month after pageant officials determined Williams had combined pageant promotion and her support for Donald Trump’s views on social media, in violation of the pageant’s “No Politics” eligibility requirements.

Since losing her title, Williams has been hailed as a martyr and a heroine by Fox News and other media outlets on the right.


Others scheduled to speak at the event include former Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandoski, former Trump administration acting U.S. Attorney General Matthew Whitaker, and Trump administration acting Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney.

The political picnic is also coupled with a conference hosted by Laxalt’s PAC and and the American Conservative Union, which will be held in Reno on Friday, Sept. 13.

I came upon this today and thought I would share...

Into the Wolf's Mouth

Nevada won't tolerate underhanded election tricks used in other states

Las Vegas Sun Editorial...https://lasvegassun.com/news/2019/aug/21/nevada-wont-tolerate-underhanded-election-tricks-u/

If there’s any doubt you’ll win, cheat. And if you get caught cheating, destroy the evidence.

This is what the Republican Party of 2019 considers acceptable election strategy.

The party’s latest attack on democracy was exposed last week in a court ruling in Georgia, where a federal judge blasted Republican state officials over the state’s controversial 2018 election.


The clear takeaway of the ruling is that Republicans maintained a voting system that could easily be hacked, rigged and weaponized against black voters.

For that, the preponderance of guilt falls on Kemp, who was Georgia’s secretary of state from 2010 until shortly after the election. (Yes, Kemp remained in charge of the election during the race, which Abrams aptly compared to a boxing match where one fighter is also the referee and one of the judges.)

The ruling is a scathing rebuke of Kemp and his fellow Republicans.

But the GOP showed no shame. A spokeswoman for the current secretary of state — a Republican, naturally — called Totenberg’s conclusions “silly and unfounded.” This despite the plaintiffs providing statements from more than 130 voters, 15 poll watchers and two county poll workers about the subterfuge.

There’s nothing silly or unfounded about what happened in Georgia. The same goes for Republican attacks on democracy there and in other states through gerrymandering and voting suppression. When those disgusting tactics don’t work and Republicans lose elections anyway, they resort to scorched-earth legislation that undercuts powers of incoming Democratic Party leaders. That happened in Michigan, North Carolina and Wisconsin.


Nevadans won’t stand for this. In the past two election cycles, voters here sent a loud-and-clear message to Republicans that we’ll protect poll access for all eligible voters and ensure their ballots are counted accurately.

We took a responsible step forward by passing the motor voter ballot question in 2018, which makes voter registration automatic when someone applies at the Department of Motor Vehicles for a driver’s license or identification card. In last year’s legislative session, lawmakers restored voting rights for convicted felons upon completion of their sentences. Then there’s the remarkable work of the Clark County Election Department, which eliminated the old precinct voting system in favor of election centers allowing eligible county voters to cast ballots at locations across the Las Vegas Valley. The change made voting far more convenient.

The Culinary Union and other advocacy groups also deserve a hand for efforts to register voters, especially among groups where turnout is traditionally low.

Nevada is a model of what can be accomplished when voters elect responsible leaders. We’ve put up a barrier to undemocratic activities of the GOP as shown in Georgia and so many other states.

Lawmakers: Transparency, shining light on dark money key to curbing cost of prescription drugs

Lawmakers: Transparency, shining light on dark money donations key to curbing high cost of prescription drugs

Thirteen-year-old Joey Ward’s asthma attacks are so severe that he often has to leave school when he is suffering an attack.The cost of the prescription drugs he has taken for years to control his asthma continues to rise, so much so that his mother sometimes has to ask for help to pay for his medication.

“My mom is trying really hard,” he said. “It makes me sad I need this medicine to breathe. I need it to live.”


Ward’s was just one of the stories about soaring prescription costs told Tuesday afternoon in Las Vegas during a roundtable discussion led by U.S. Reps. Steven Horsford and Susie Lee. The two Democrats, whose districts include parts of Southern Nevada, say rising prescription drug costs can be traced to a number of factors, including a lack of pricing transparency, market exclusivity for drug creators and pharmaceutical industry influence in politics.

“There’s not many issues in this country where I think we can come together, but I do think that prescription drug pricing — it doesn’t matter if you’re a Democrat, a Republican, an Independent, it doesn’t matter if you live in rural Iowa or you live in Los Angeles — this is an issue that affects every single American and one that we in Congress need to come together to address,” Lee said.

Lee touted passage of the For the People Act, which she called probably the most important piece of legislation that has cleared the House this year. The act would require political organizations that dole out money to candidates to make their donors public. These dark money donations, she said, are one of the tools in the drug lobby’s arsenal.

“I’m part of a historic freshman class,” Lee said. “We got elected on an agenda of cleaning corruption out of Washington, of bringing government back for the people, and (the act) does that by getting rid of dark money — the dark money that pharmaceutical companies (have) used to control Congress for so long.”

The For the People Act, however, has hit a roadblock in the Senate, with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Kentucky, keeping it and many other Democratic-backed bills from the House from being debated in the upper chamber.


Horsford recently introduced the Stopping the Pharmaceutical Industry from Keeping Drugs Expensive Act — SPIKE Act — with Rep. Tom Reed, R-N.Y., as a co-sponsor. The act would require drug companies to justify large price increases to the secretary of health and human services. If a drug increases in price by more than 10 percent, or $10,000, over one year, if a drug increases in price 25 percent, or $25,000, over three years or if a drug has a launch price higher than $26,000, then the price must be justified.

“Until we can get the transparency of cost, it’s hard to then write legislation to hold them accountable on the oversight and enforcement side,” he said.

Horsford also said House Democrats were working to allow the federal government to negotiate directly with drug manufacturers the price it pays for prescription drugs used by Medicare patients.

“It’s asinine that that provision is even in federal law,” he said. “It was passed in the ‘80s when they did Medicare Part D and it literally it is just a phrase in a federal law that prohibits Medicare from being able to directly negotiation with drug companies, and we all know that that’s how costs are set for private plans, for Medicaid, employer-sponsored plans.”


https://lasvegassun.com/news/2019/aug/21/lawmakers-transparency-shining-light-on-dark-money/

Nevada's Clean Energy bills celebrated. Now about those auto emmissions...

And on a good note (a rare thing these days)...

Environmental groups, Democratic lawmakers and Gov. Steve Sisolak celebrated the clean energy agenda passed during the 2019 legislative session, but there were also calls to take more aggressive action to protect public health from auto emissions.

The RenewNV Coalition, members of which include are but not limited to the Nevada Conservation League, Chispa Nevada, Battle Born Progress, and the Sierra Club, released a clean energy scorecard on the 2019 legislative session last week. Sisolak and several legislative leaders attended an event marking the scorecard’s released. The governor and Democratic lawmakers all earned a score of 100 percent.

“I haven’t gotten a 100 percent in a lot of years,” Sisolak joked. “I think it was second grade, the last 100 percent." “We are well on our way to reducing carbon emissions from our energy sector, but actually now transportation is the number one source of carbon emissions,” Assemblyman Howard Watts said at the event. “We have health impacts related to that transportation pollution.”

The most important next legislative steps is figuring out how to move away from fossil fuel transportation to electric transportation, said Watts.

Watts was the sole sponsor of successful legislation that provided weight and length exemptions for electric semi-trailer trucks.

“Those put out some of the worst diesel pollution. We’ve all been blasted by them,” Watts said.

In an interview, Watts said he believed there is support in the Legislature to emulate California’s mandate to increase sales of zero-emission vehicles and auto emission standards, the nation’s toughest. Thirteen states and the District of Columbia have adopted California’s standards.


State Sen. Yvanna Cancella, who chaired the Growth and Infrastructure Committee where much of the session’s clean energy legislation was passed, similarly touched on the environment and health impact of pollution on air quality.

“The number one reason that kids miss school in Southern Nevada is because of asthma,” Cancella said. “And that’s a direct result of air pollution and air quality.”

The Clark County Department of Air Quality lists one basin in Nevada as an “ozone marginal nonattainment area,” meaning it does not meet EPA national ambient air quality standards for ozone.

That basin is home to the Las Vegas Metropolitan Area, where 7 out of 10 Nevadans live.


“When I began my campaign I promised to support legislation and executive action that cleaned our air and cleaned our water increased renewable energy standards and put Nevadans on a path to 100 percent carbon free emissions.”

For the most part, conservationists agree that Sisolak has kept those campaign promises.

During his campaign Sisolak said he would support community solar projects and later signed a bill, AB465, sponsored by Democratic Assemblywoman Daniele Monroe Moreno that promises to expand solar access, reduce rates for some low-income customers, and expand job training and placement opportunities in the solar industry.

“Expanding access to solar especially among low income customers must be included as part of a comprehensive plan to reach our renewable energy goals,” Sisolak said.

In May Sisolak signed Nevada on to the U.S. Climate Alliance— a group of governors committed to upholding the Paris Climate Agreement— after pledging to follow the agreement and the Clean Power Plan.

He also said he would raise the state’s renewable portfolio standard to 50 percent by 2030 in order to move Nevada towards 100 percent renewable energy. In April Sisolak signed into law SB358, a bill by Democratic Sen. Chris Brooks which increased the state’s Renewable Portfolio Standard to 50 percent by 2030 with a goal of 100 percent carbon-free energy by 2050.

“By signing SB358 Nevada has finally reclaimed its clean energy leadership role by having one of the highest RSP standards in the country and the benefits are endless and more to come,” Sisolak said.

While Sisolak did not call out President Trump by name he said, “Nevada is making it clear that we will act together to combat global warming even when others on the national stage fail to do so.”


read more at https://www.nevadacurrent.com/2019/08/19/clean-energy-bills-celebrated-now-about-those-auto-emissions/

FBI Agents Association calls for domestic terrorism laws

While the Trump Justice Department earlier this week declared 'black-identity extremists' to be the nation's greatest domestic threat, the FBI Agent's Association calls for domestic terrorism be codified into law.

https://www.politico.com/story/2019/08/06/fbi-domestic-terrorism-threat-to-american-people-1449105
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