Leaked: The Internet must go!

Hey! Are you on the internet right now? Of course you are! Then you should definitely check out this amazing video about what the internet companies are planning. This move could hurt both consumers and content creators--but of course would be a huge windfall for internet providers.

How weathly are Americans?

The disparity in wealth between the richest one percent of Americans and the bottom 80 percent has grown exponentially over the last thirty years — but the video, posted by user politizane and relying on data from a popular Mother Jones post, focuses on the difference between the ideal disparity that Americans would like to see and the reality.

Tax the Rich

So long! It's been fun.

Dear listeners,

In July 2011 I started a new job teaching Italian at Kansas State University. In some ways this was a return to my roots, as I taught English as a Foreign Language for 17 years in Italy. Now I am teaching English speakers Italian. I've come full circle.

This coming full circle also means the end of an attempt on my part to start a new career in my 50s. Sadly, as much as I tried to bring community radio to Manhattan, I was not successful. So I have decided to dedicate my energy and time to my first love, being an educator.

The archive of my shows will remain active - there's a lot of great content in the shows. So I hope you continue to listen and enjoy them.

Once again thank you for your support and encouragement over the five years the show was on the air. I know many feel that my program needs to be on the air and I agree with you that a diversity of voices is sorely lacking in the local media. But alas, it is not I who will bring that diversity. It will have to be someone else.

Christopher E. Renner

23 February 2009

Lumps of coal wrapped inside ‘green’ package

by Scott Rothchilds, Lawrence Journal World, Monday February 23, 2009

Topeka — For the second straight year, Kansas lawmakers have put green wrapping around a carbon dioxide-emitting coal-fired power project.

Legislative leaders say House Bill 2014, which would pave the way for construction of two 700-megawatt coal-burning plants near Holcomb, will be up for a vote this week.

“It’s a pretty comprehensive bill,” House Speaker Mike O’Neal, R-Hutchinson, said.

The legislation incorporates more than a dozen bills that would implement sweeping changes in state energy policy, including several “green” initiatives aimed at increasing the use of renewable energy sources, such as wind.

But the core of the bill includes changes that would essentially require that Kansas Department of Health and Environment Secretary Roderick Bremby issue permits for the Holcomb project in southwestern Kansas.

Bremby denied the permits in 2007, citing environmental and health effects of the project’s emission of 11 million tons per year of carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas that scientists say is contributing to destructive climate change.

The Legislature spent much of the 2008 session passing legislation to reverse Bremby’s decision, but Gov. Kathleen Sebelius vetoed the attempts and efforts to override her fell just short of the two-thirds majority needed in the House.

Developers of the project — Hays-based Sunflower Electric Power Corp. and Colorado-based Tri-State Generation and Transmission Association — are seeking to have Bremby’s decision overturned in court.

But they also are seeking legislative help again. O’Neal said the Legislature needs to act because it is unknown when the legal process will run its course.

“The court is on its own timetable. That timetable doesn’t fit our timetable in terms of if we’re going to do the project,” O’Neal said.

O’Neal said he believes he has the votes in his chamber to override an expected Sebelius veto — 84 votes in the 125-member House. In the 40-member Senate, 27 votes are needed to override.

But opponents of the project say they will be able to uphold a veto.

The project, they say, is even more untenable now than last year because of the election of President Barack Obama, who has vowed to address greenhouse gases.

Last week new EPA administrator Lisa Jackson set in motion a process that could lead to regulations of CO2.

David Bookbinder, chief climate counsel for the Sierra Club, said Jackson’s decision “should cast significant further doubt on the approximately 100 coal-fired power plants that the industry is trying to rush through the permitting process without any limits on carbon dioxide.”

Christopher's Comment:

Since I doubt if the Manhattan Mercury will have anything even close to the quality of Mr. Rothchilds' writing, I am posting it here in order to help inform the public debate and keep Manhattanites abreast of what is happening. Please share this article with other people you feel would be willing to speak out for our environment and future generations of Kansans.

HB 2014 is a terrible idea and the proponents of coal, pollution of our air and further degradation of our environment are lying to the people of Kansas in order to get this bill passed. They have put in "green" elements in the bill to make it more palatable and gets the votes they need, but at its core, this bill is anything but green. It is about making a corporate business strategy the energy policy for our state and deserves to be defeat as it was last year.

How many times do the people of Kansas have to say "NO!" to such a example of bad government?

Let our legislators know you aren't going to be fooled by the candy coating of a rotten bill. Contact them at:

Senator Roger Reitz. Phone: 785-296-7360, Email: Roger.Reitz@senate.ks.gov

Rep. Sydney Carlin, Phone: 785-296-7677, Email: sydney.carlin@house.ks.gov

Rep. Tom Hawk, Phone: 785-296-7665, Email: tom.hawk@house.ks.gov

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