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Environment

If We Blame Hillary For This Uranium/Bears Ears F*ckery, Maybe Fox Will Care!

Lol, but we do amuse us!

As part of their ongoing witch hunt against nice corporations who simply want to make America and their profits great again, House Democrats plan to investigate exactly how the Trump administration made the decision to vastly cut the size of a national monument in Utah. In particular, the House Natural Resources Committee wants to know how much of the decision was pushed by mining and other corporate interests. Roll Call brings us the radioactive dirt on a uranium company that met with Team Trump well before the administration announced it would "study" shrinking the boundaries of several national monuments established by three previous presidents.

Natural Resources chair Raúl Grijalva wants to know whether corporate greedheads gave Ryan Zinke and the Interior Department help in its decision to chop away some 85-90 percent of the Bears Ears National Monument, which Barack Obama established in 2016. Utah Republicans and representatives of extractive industries opposed Bears Ears and other monuments because there were all sorts of neat resources to dig up, and besides, there's no way to monetize scenic beauty and sacred/threatened Native American sites. As Roll Call reports, the rollback just might have had a little help from a uranium mining and processing company:

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Blacktacular

Republicans Say Stupid Sh*t Lies, Weekend Show Edition!

It's your Sunday Show Rundown!

Let's begin today's Sunday show roundup with National Security Adviser and least favorite Bolton (after Michael and Ramsey), John. Trump's NSA appeared on CNN's "State of The Union," proclaiming the "unquestionable success" of the second Trump/Kim summit, even though no deal was reached and Trump was humiliated. Jake Tapper asked Bolton about Trump's statements regarding Otto Warmbier, the American college student who was sent home in a coma from North Korea and died shortly after being returned to the US; Trump said at a press conference that Kim Jong Un denied knowing anything about Warmbier, and so case closed. Trump stated, "He tells me that he didn't know about it, and I will take him at his word. Those prisons are rough. They're rough places, and bad things happen. But I don't believe he knew about it."

TAPPER: He's going to take Kim Jong-un at his word that he didn't know about it. The Warmbier family put out a statement. They disagree. They say Kim Jong-un is responsible. Are they wrong?

BOLTON: Look, the president made it very clear he considers what happened to Otto Warmbier an act of brutality that's completely unacceptable to the American side. I have heard him before the summit itself, before the press conference, talk about how deeply he cared about Otto Warmbier and his family. The fact is, the best thing North Korea could do right now would be to give us a full accounting of what happened and who was responsible for it.

That's quite a change or non-commitment for Bolton. Especially when, shortly after Otto Warmbier's death, Bolton was basically egging on a full scale regime change in North Korea.

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News

'I'm Totally Off Script Right Now.' Wonkagenda For Mon., March 4, 2019

Trump's humps a flag, Bernie's back, and Fox News is calling from INSIDE the White House. Your morning news brief!

Morning Wonketariat! Here's some of the things we may be talking about today.

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2020 presidential election

President Jay Inslee Will Put Solar Panels On White House, Capitol, Your Mom

He's got nerdmentum!

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee today became the four billionth candidate to announce he's running for the Democratic nomination in 2020, although he joins the field with one distinction: He's actually the first governor to jump into the race. Heck, there's more mayors running than governors so far. Inslee positions himself as the candidate who'll fight climate change, and released a video that almost comically emphasizes the point. In the first 15 seconds, it hits us with a montage of Inslee saying variations on "We have got to stop global warming" and pounding on "climate change" over and over -- taken in isolation, it could almost look like a clip from an opposition ad complaining Inslee's too single-minded. But that's pretty much his point, as he said in a New Yorker profile published yesterday. It just doesn't make sense for Dems to say climate change is an existential threat but not center their campaigns on fighting it.

Yr Wonkette has watched a whole lot of campaign announcement videos this year. Inslee's is definitely one of them, but it's the first we've come across where the campaign has set it to not allow embedding. So we will try to recreate that opening montage through the magic of screenshots, which are like a video with a really slow frame rate. The ad kicks off a bit hokily, with Earnest Young Voter asking what Inslee has to say about climate. And then we get a quick recap (and trade) of Inslee's career as a congressman and governor, aging incrementally as the climate has gotten worser.

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News

Chinaman Not The Preferred Nomenclature, Trump. Wonkagenda For Tues., Feb. 26, 2019

Michael Cohen has 'EARTH SHATTERING' news, Trump trying to steal Uncle Sam's purse, and 9/11 first responders need our help. Your morning news brief!

Morning Wonketariat! Here's some of the things we may be talking about today.

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Science

Meet Daryl. Daryl Loves Carbon Dioxide. Daryl Hates When Gays Make Him Gay With Their Gay Elbows. Hi, Daryl!

Pennsylvania's official heterosexual science-understander, everybody!

In a hearing last week, Pennsylvania state Rep. Daryl Metcalfe explained why he opposed any efforts to reduce greenhouse gasses: he just really really loves plants and vegetables, which need carbon dioxide to grow, so take THAT, you crazy radicals who want to completely eliminate CO2 from our Earth's atmosphere! We suppose there is some irony in the fact that without a certain amount of CO2, you couldn't even grow yourself a straw man, either.

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News

Dianne Feinstein Was A Dick Again

Burn the witch!

Dianne Feinstein was a dick to some schoolchildren yesterday. For many, many, many minutes, she was not a dick. But then she was a dick. She said some unfortunate things about like "ohhhhh you know SO MUCH BETTER" and "why don't YOU run for Senate then" and "I win elections by all the millions of votes, you can't tell ME what to do!" (It was implied.)

But what Dianne Feinstein did not do yesterday was big-foot the children (who were really smart and passionate) out of her office. And no, Twitter, she didn't singlehandedly stop the Green New Deal and therefore needs to resign.

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Science

Republican Lunatic Will Give Montana Its Very Own Science, Hooray!

That is the face of knowing stuff, for sure!

A Republican state legislator in Montana has some great ideas about to protect his state from the depredations of Big Science: Just declare climate change fake and move on. State Rep. Joe Read of Ronan (population 1,871, the wee little sister of your editrix's big town of Polson, pop. 4000ish) is not a big fan of so-called "climate science," and in 2011 introduced a bill declaring climate change, if it's happening at all, beneficial to Montanta's economy. Surprisingly, it didn't go anywhere, but at least Read got mocked in the national press, and by one of his Democrat colleagues in the lege at the time, who said the very idea was "ludicrous" and called the bill "a waste of the Legislature's time." Now, Read is back with more important freedom legislation, and has has introduced a pair of blockbuster bills that would allow Montana to secede from both federal regulation and from scientific reality, because that is how you deal with the heavy hand of Big Government.

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Science

Meet Trump's New Climate Policy Guy: This F*cking Lunatic

'The demonization of carbon dioxide is just like the demonization of the poor Jews under Hitler'? Oh.

The Washington Post reports the Trump administration is on the verge of forming a panel to reconsider the Pentagon and Intelligence community assessment that climate change poses a serious concern for national security. The idea that climate is a national security concern is hardly crazy -- the Pentagon has been warning about the implications of climate change for national defense since the 1990s, and by 2010, the Defense Department was urging that climate change should be considered a major force of destabilization around the world. Hungry people whose crops have dried up may get violent, you know? Or at least pick up and move elsewhere, where they may not be welcome. Similarly, the CIA in 2008 tried to assess the likely effects of climate change on security through 2030.

Of course, now that President ScienceBrain is in office, that's all in the trash, at least in the Oval Office. And this new effort to set up a "Presidential Committee on Climate Security" through an executive order has the potential to erase considerations of climate from national security planning, because the "president" doesn't believe it, and has surrounded himself with other great intellects who reject science too. And hoo boy, get a load of the guy in charge of the whole shebang: William Happer, a laser expert who worked on Reagan's Star Wars antimissile program and, not surprisingly, is not a climate scientist. Instead, he argues that we need a lot more CO2 in the atmosphere, because it's what plants crave.

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Nice Time

Look At All The Nice Things. Just LOOK At Them!

Go read some excellent longform journamalism and essays! Also, horror movies and race! And MORE!

If it's Sunday, this must be Nice Things, our weekly escape from the quotidian awfulness. Our featured doggo this week comes via a photo by Wonkette reader "Teecha," and we don't think Teecha mentioned a name for this lovely old rescue dog. If it is a dog at all: I think it may actually be one of Sia's more inventive disguises, like that time she was a little pony.

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Science

Chuck Schumer Going On Offense On Climate Change? Be Still Our Hearts!

Time for Republicans to decide whether science is real.

Yesterday, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer welcomed Mitch McConnell's decision to bring the Green New Deal resolution to the floor for a vote, although Schumer noted that McConnell's intent was far from a good-faith effort to address climate change. On Tuesday, McConnell announced he wanted a vote on the resolution, hoping maybe such a vote would somehow reveal DEEP RIFTS among Senate Democrats, especially the thousand or so running for president. Schumer essentially said great, we know this can't pass in a Republican-controlled Senate, but we're happy to call your bluff, Mitch. Now, how about you guys get on the record that you reject the international scientific consensus that Earth is getting warmer, that humans are causing it, and that we need to take action?

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Environment

Green New Deal Will Steal Your Farting Cow's Bicycle

GOP has its new DEATH PANELS!

Looks like the Green New Deal must be gaining support, since rightwingers are going Full Death Panels to suggest it's not merely going to be difficult, but outright psycho-crazy IMPOSSIBLE. Obviously, no one in their right mind could support the paired goals of keeping the planet habitable for large mammals like ourselves while also creating jobs, because nobody wants jobs or a sustainable environment, not really. So you get spectacles like Fox News smartperson Jeanine Pirro somehow equating reduced greenhouse gases with infanticide, because don't those always go together? Let's take a moment to separate the facts from the farting cows, shall we? We shall.

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News

ANOTHER Government Shutdown!?! Wonkagenda For Mon., Feb. 11, 2019.

Trump demands WALL (again), everyone is still talking about Jeff Bezos's dick pics, and so much more. Your morning news brief!

Morning Wonketariat! Here's some of the things we may be talking about today.

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Environment

Green New Deal? ONE, PLEASE!

But what if we create jobs and save the environment for nothing?

In honor of Infrastructure Week, or maybe just Saving Our Own Large Mammal Selves Week, US Sen. Ed Markey and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez officially launched their fight for a Green New Deal today, invoking FDR and the original New Deal, and JFK's 1961 call to send humans to the Moon within a decade. Stopping climate change isn't something that can be achieved incrementally, they said, noting last fall's UN report warning that humanity has a dozen years, tops, to change its energy consumption and prevent the very worst effects of global warming. (Yes, Senator Inhofe, they announced it in winter, now go away.)

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Environment

Meet Your New Ryan Zinke, Same As The Old Ryan Zinke!

New Interior head David Bernhardt will be great.

Donald Trump continued his mid-term record of replacing terrible, grifty incompetents with competent but also terrible people who'll probably be much worse, nominating David Bernhardt to replace Ryan Zinke as Secretary of the Interior. Zinke was a flamboyant egotist with a taste for travel and ridiculous spending, plus an ethics record that has him still under investigation for possible criming while in office. But don't go saying this is just like how Trump replaced the headline-grabbing EPA chief Scott Pruitt with Pruitt's quietly horrifying deputy Andrew Wheeler. This is completely different, although like Wheeler, Bernhardt has served as deputy secretary at his agency, in his case quietly gutting protections for America's public lands. But the two men are nothing alike! Wheeler was a coal industry lobbyist, you see, while Bernhardt lobbied for the oil industry.

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Environment

Tucker Carlson Explains Cold Weather Breaks Wind

Part 2 in an apparently endless series.

Hot -- or perhaps very chilly -- on the heels of Jim Hoft's proclamation that solar energy doesn't work in the cold, because the sun is hiding and left us all alone, Tucker Carlson used his television program Thursday to explain that wind power is also a "scam," and that the wind actually cannot heat anyone's house in extreme cold. He didn't go into any detail on why that is, but it's only logical, isn't it? The weather report never includes a wind WARM factor, now does it? Science! Why don't you liberals LEARN IT!

A 30-second clip of the craziest part of the segment was roundly (like a windmill!) mocked all over the Twitters, but to make sure we didn't miss any of the stupid, we watched the whole four minutes and felt ourselves getting dumber by the second. Here's Tucker, taking the "wind out of the sails" of those nutball liberals pushing the "Green New Deal."

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