snapshot of archived site

The Whitehouse.gov web site changes and the Transition Plan

Several people have tweeted about how the climate change page is no longer posted to the whitehouse.gov web site. What they’re not aware of is that this change was planned starting last October.

First of all, whitehouse.gov reflects whoever is the occupant of the White House. Unlike the EPA or Department of Labor web sites, we shouldn’t be surprised to see sweeping changes during this transition.

The National Archives and Record Administration has archived the Obama’s web pages, as well as Barack and Michelle Obama’s official POTUS and FLOTUS twitter accounts. So the pages aren’t gone. What you see now is what Trump’s team has put together during the transition. The pages specific to the tenant are going to be different.

In addition, the non-profit Archive.org has preserved the Obama whitehouse.gov web pages, in addition to all government web pages. Yes, including the climate change page. If you’re feeling generous, Archive.org could use a donation to help with expenses.

This is part of the transition, and not unexpected. Where we should start getting concerned is when we see pages disappear from sites like the EPA and the Department of Labor once Trump’s cabinet members have taken over the departments.

 

Prints of hands on rusted steel girder

Power to the People and Saturday’s March

I don’t join “movements”. I’ve seen them co-opted too many times.

I saw this with Blogher, which was supposed to be a movement to give attention and voice to women writers. But three people turned it into a profit-making venture and ruined everything.

We also saw this with Occupy and Black Lives Matter.

Now we’re seeing it with the Women’s March, as one of the self-appointed  leaders  used the event to slam Hillary Clinton by deliberately leaving her name off a list of women who have led the way in this fight. This, even though the list started off with an unattributed Hillary Clinton quote.

The inevitable problems that typically occur with any “movement” have surfaced, and some have talked about not marching. However, what we have to remember is that though some people seek to co-opt a “movement”, they can’t steal the power and the passion that started it.

I hope people, all people, march tomorrow…not for the Women’s March, the movement, but for your own passion. Whatever led you to want to march isn’t gone.

As for me, I have all my feelers out and ready to expose any and all actions Trump, his cabinet, and this Congress do, starting with today’s signed Executive orders. That’s how I march: across the page.

Power to the people.

Trump at rally

“You know, I’m, like, a smart person”

Among all of the discussion about the Russian involvement in getting Trump elected, one item hasn’t yet received much play in the press.

In an interview with Fox on Sunday, and excerpted in a New York Times story:

He also indicated that, as president, he would not take the daily intelligence briefing that President Obama and his predecessors have received. Mr. Trump, who has received the briefing sparingly as president-elect, said that it was often repetitive and that he would take it “when I need it.” He said his vice president, Mike Pence, would receive the daily briefing.

“You know, I’m, like, a smart person. I don’t have to be told the same thing in the same words every single day for the next eight years,” he said. He added that he had instructed the officials who give the briefing: “‘If something should change from this point, immediately call me. I’m available on a one-minute’s notice.’”

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Photo of Merrick Garland

No We Can’t Sneak Judge Garland In Through The Back Door

Crooks & Liars put out an audacious plan, based on twitter posts from Daily Kos’ David Waldman.

The foundation of Waldman’s idea is that newly elected senators are not sworn in yet so their positions are vacant. At noon on January 3, previous senatorial terms expire. At that time there are 66 senators whose terms are not expiring: 34  Democrat, 2 independent, and 30 Republican. Therefore, at noon on January 3, Democrats would be in the majority.  Following Waldman’s line of thought, since there are only 66 senators at noon,  it would only require 33 votes to confirm Judge Merrick Garland.

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Jeff Sessions

What kind of damage can a Trump Cabinet do?

If we were to search for the absolute best leaders for the different cabinet positions in the White House, we’d find Trump’s picks directly opposite them. A cabinet leader should support the mission of his or her cabinet, and seek to ensure it operates to the best of its ability. Trump’s picks have been, almost universally and vehemently, opposed to both the work and the premise of the organizations they’ve been picked to lead.

I shudder at who Trump will pick for Department of Interior and the EPA, and suspect that they’ll be very similar to Ronald Reagan’s picks of James G. Watt and Anne Gorsuch, respectively. Both individuals loathed the federal government. Watt spent his short tenure as Department of Interior trying to give away public land resource rights to every polluting industry in the United States, and Anne Gorsuch packed the EPA with industry cronies, starved it of money, and did everything in her power to stop it from enforcing laws it was tasked with enforcing.

The only saving grace is they were so controversial, so inept, and so fanatical that both were forced to resign within their first terms. Even then, their efforts damaged and demoralized the departments they led.

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