9/11/2004

9-11-04 - 4

9-11-04

I've written about this before, but one of the most nefarious things about the Bush administration is the way they've used the "War on Terror" as a distraction from all the things they're pushing through with executive orders, that are getting no publicity, no vote in congress, pure stealth. Many of these are environmental rollbacks. For example, they've rolled back the Clinton-era rule banning "mountain top removal", an incredibly destructive method of coal mining. They've also rolled back the requirement on power plants to meet new stricter standards on pollution (this one's a little complicated, but the key point remains). They've opened up tons of National Forest land to road-building and logging. Another nice little stealth move they're slipping through now is this assault-weapons ban. Bush claims to be in favor of the ban, but his cronies in congress won't let it even come to a vote. This is a sort of disgusting form of political two-facedness where he gets to represent both sides. Of course if the ban lapses even briefly, people all over the US will stock up on assault weapons, and then when the ban goes back in place, they get to keep them. Good job, shrub, making America safer, my ass! Some other nice rule changes that haven't gotten much attention at all - the rules were changed so that media companies are now allowed to own several TV stations, newspapers, radio stations, all in the same market. This favors Fox heavily, along with the other mega media corporations; basically it continues the break-down of guarantees that there be some honesty and debate in the media. Another topic that isn't being addressed at all in this election is the horrible tax cut. The cuts to the income tax were bad enough - they severely favored the rich, and reduced the progressiveness of America's tax brackets even further - but the ones that are just incredibly clearly wrong are the cuts to capital gains and the inheritance tax. These two tax cuts are clearly only for the benefit of the rich - average Americans get ZERO benefit from them - and they are clearly NOT an economic stimulus. The way you get stimulus from tax cuts is by cutting the taxes on the poor, people who need the money and are more likely to turn around and spend it.

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old rants