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The Blogosphere
Monday, November 05, 2012
Obama EPA second term agenda revealed; Obama’s Katrina moment as FEMA unprepared and uncoordinated

Hot Air

If you thought the War on Coal and various other job dampening EPA initiatives over the past few years were bad, apparently that was only a skirmish compared to what’s in store after this Tuesday. At the Examiner, Conn Carroll has the inside scoop on how Santa’s little elves at Obama’s Environmental Protection Agency have been very busy lately. But you might not care for the presents they have in mind for us all.

President Obama’s Environmental Protection Agency has devoted an unprecedented number of bureaucrats to finalizing new anti-coal regulations that are set to be released at the end of November, according to a source inside the EPA.

More than 50 EPA staff are now crashing to finish greenhouse gas emission standards that would essentially ban all construction of new coal-fired power plants. Never before have so many EPA resources been devoted to a single regulation. The independent and non-partisan Manhattan Institute estimates that the EPA’s greenhouse gas coal regulation will cost the U.S. economy $700 billion.

Carroll goes on to speculate that the mad dash is a result of panic at the agency over the possibility that Obama may lose the election. They would, in that case, have to rush out a bunch of regulations which, “would then be very hard for a President Romney to undo.”

I don’t tend to agree with that. It’s certainly possible that they could roll out some regulations in the next seven weeks, but shortly after President Romney is sworn in and put his own people in place at the agency, those could pretty well be swept aside at the stroke of a pen. (Or so I understand it, anyway.) I tend to think that this is preparation for a roll-out in the coming months in the event of an Obama second term, which is pretty much the analysis of Larry Bell at Forbes.

Titled “A Look Ahead to EPA Regulations for 2013: Numerous Obama EPA Rules Placed on Hold Until After the Election Spell Doom For Jobs and Economic Growth”, it lists and describes new rules concocted over the past year ranging from additional restrictions on greenhouse gas emissions, tougher water guidelines and tightening of the ozone standard. Taken together, they will further drive up pump prices, impose construction bans on local communities, and cripple oil, natural gas and coal production.

As the Washington Post notes, the report puts a spotlight back on the Obama EPA which has earned a “reputation for Abuse”, serving as a stark reminder that “President Obama has presided over a green team administration that works every day to “crucify” oil and gas companies and make sure that”....if you want to build a coal plant you got a big problem.”

Coal miners and coal powered plants already have a big problem, as we have pointed out repeatedly. But it looks like those problems may grow by several orders of magnitude in the coming months if the current White House occupant remains in office. The President has already been seen to bristle at criticism from his own Left flank over how he hasn’t done enough for the environmentalists who can’t understand why the oil companies are still in business four years later. Unrestrained by the need to win another election. having a lot more “flexibility,” as you might hear from Vladimir, these folks can really run amok.

If that’s what America chooses on Tuesday, then that’s what they’ll get. Higher gas, heating and energy prices, less jobs in an energy industry which can’t meet the demands place on them by the EPA, and everything that comes with it. But, as H.L. Mencken said, we all get the government we deserve.

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Giuliani: Where the hell are the generators?

BY ED MORRISSEY

The initial response to Hurricane Sandy appeared adequate, at the very least.  All levels of government seemed engaged, first responders had the resources needed, and confidence was high that we could quickly address the immediate human needs and then shift quickly to rebuilding.  Those hopes have vanished in a fumbled response at the local and federal levels.  On the local level, Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s bizarre idea to keep the New York City Marathon in place while people on Staten Island can’t get water, power or heat has undermined confidence in his approach to the crisis - as Bloomberg himself discovered when attempting to meet and greet some of the locals (via NRO’s Eliana Johnson):

Storm-ravaged and weary Rockaways residents cornered Mayor Bloomberg yesterday to angrily demand more aid for their devastated neighborhood. “"When are we gonna get some help?” blasted one desperate woman, who had to be held back by the mayor’s security detail as Bloomberg stood by with a deer-in-the-headlights look. “When are we gonna get some f...king help?” she demanded.

“There’s old ladies in my building that don’t got nothing,” lashed out a man on video caught by a NY1 reporting crew.

Bloomberg’s trip to the Rockaways wasn’t announced and wouldn’t have been caught on cameras if the news crew hadn’t happened to run across him. Back in City Hall, he expressed sympathy with the residentsí plight. Bloomberg’’s predecessor doesn’t have much sympathy for him or for Barack Obama, either.  Rudy Giuliani angrily castigated both for their inadequate response to the disaster.  Where are the generators, Giuliani wondered - and the water?

At a Sunday gathering of Mitt Romney partisans in West Palm Beach, Florida, former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani delivered a blistering attack on President Barack Obama for what he said was a “disgraceful” response to Hurricane Sandy.

“Maybe the first day or two of the storm, the president did a good job,” Giuliani said. “The last three or four days? It’s disgraceful.” ((the President used it s a photo op before flying off to strategize with his lawyers in DC while pretending to oversee the FEMA response campaign (though he couldn’t manage a two car funeral) and then jetting off the Nevada to campaign (something he is very capable of).)

The Brooklyn-born firebrand excoriated the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) for neglecting to bring bottled water to the Northeastern U.S. during the days before the superstorm hit.

“It’s disgraceful what he’s done. It’s disgraceful what his FEMA has done,” Giuliani said. “There are people in New York City who don’t have bottles of water like this. See this little bottle of water? They donít have it in New York. You know why? Because Barack Obama’s FEMA didn’t think to pre-position it.”

“What - they didn’t learn anything from Katrina?” Breitbart has more on the water situation, and it’s as bad as Giuliani says.  While FEMA administrator Craig Fugate told NBC that “We already had the water that was initially staged and based upon the demand that was there that the state had,” documents - and photos - paint a very different picture:

But contrary to Fugate’s claims, there simply was no “water that was initially staged” by FEMA. When the storm hit, all the FEMA bottled water was in its Georgia or Maryland warehouses. The request for proposal sent out hurriedly on Friday, November 2 for an additional 2.3 million gallons of bottled water, for delivery to Long Island on Monday, November 5, was not a pre-negotiated, pre-bid contract “turned on” that day according to a FEMA master plan. Instead, it was an example of FEMA scrambling after the fact to meet the needs of victims that it should have planned for weeks earlier.

In addition, Fugate’s claim that “once we go into response we have pre-negotiated, pre-bid contracts that are in effect, and we turn those contracts on and go to our vendors and say we want the water delivered at this rate to these locations,” is not supported by the facts surrounding the request for proposal that was made on Friday, November 2 upon which the Breitbart report referenced by NBC’s Klein was based.

Indeed, that request for proposal, which can be seen here, was an open bid available to any vendors interested in bidding. All of the vendors for the request for proposal, FEMA contracting officer Annette Wright told Breitbart News on Friday, “are currently being evaluated.” Presumably, the vendor was selected some time over the weekend so they could fulfill the delivery requirement of Monday.

The language of the request for proposal clearly stated that it was neither “pre-negotiated” nor “pre-bid” In fact, it was a hurriedly put together “open bid[."]

Giuliani told the West Palm Beach crowd that if this occurred while George Bush was President after the lessons of Hurricane Katrina, Congress would be impeaching him by now, and the media crucifixion would be well under way.  It’s difficult to argue with that assessment.

Posted on 11/05 at 11:38 AM
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