100 days of Failure


Assessing The Republican Congress’s First Hundred Days

When Republicans took control over the Senate after last year’s midterms, new Majority Leader Mitch McConnell announced that his main goal for the party was to be responsible, not scary . Yesterday marked the first 100 days of the GOP-controlled 114th Congress, and the results have proven that McConnell and his caucus have not lived up to their promise. Since January, House and Senate Republicans have supported policies that threaten the future of our economic recovery, would limit access to health care, protect big polluters by obstructing action on climate change, and put our national security at risk.

Here are just a few of the many examples of the GOP’s’ failed leadership so far this Congress:

The GOP-led Congress prioritized the interests of the few, with budgets that would hurt working families.

  • Congressional Republican leaders’ rhetoric is now filled with references to inequality, the struggling middle class, and stagnant wages. But in reality, their budget would slash education funding for 1.9 million disadvantaged students, strip 16.4 million Americans of health care coverage, eliminate job training for 2 million workers, cut 2,250 medical and scientific research grants, drop 35,000 preschoolers from Head Start and more.
  • On top of that, House GOP leaders plan to give even more tax cuts to the wealthiest Americans, including an expected vote to repeal the estate tax this week.

Congress continued to sabotage the Affordable Care Act, despite the fact that over 16 million Americans are now covered thanks to the law.

  • One of the first votes in the House of Representatives of the 114th Congress was to repeal the Affordable Care Act. This is just one in the now nearly 60 votes in Congress to repeal the Affordable Care Act over the past five years, with more expected when this Congress votes on a budget in the coming weeks. And despite their many promises, Republicans still haven’t offered a significant replacement bill.
  • Through King v. Burwell, a suit brought by conservatives, the Supreme Court could also strike a major blow to the ACA later this year. Yet Republicans have refused to offer a legislative fix to protect the millions of Americans that would lose insurance and prevent the health care system from devolving into chaos.

GOP leadership is trying to obstruct efforts to address climate change, with no energy policy of their own.

  • There is no other issue on which the 114th Congress has actively tried to stunt progress or do harm as much as climate and energy. According to a new report by the Center for American Progress, this Congress has held more roll-call votes on energy and environmental issues than any other topic, with 8 in the House and 22 in the Senate related to the Keystone XL pipeline alone.
  • In fact, the U.S. Senate has cast more votes to remove protections of wilderness areas, block new parks, and sell-off public lands than it has to address defense, immigration, and veterans’ issues combined.

The Republicans’ mass deportation agenda was front and center, even putting national security at risk.

There are many other issues they have failed to lead on as well. Rather than pass proactive legislation to improve women’s health, for example, this Congress has introduced over 20 bills to restrict access to abortion and inserted harmful and irrelevant abortion restrictions in important bills, impeding their progress. And Senate Republicans have continued to hold hostage the nomination of Loretta Lynch for attorney general, despite her bipartisan support and overwhelming qualifications.

BOTTOM LINE: With Congress under new management, the body has completely become a place where the interests of working families are put on the chopping block, where attacks on education, health care, a clean and safer planet are commonplace while immigrant families are repeatedly threatened. In these first 100 days of the GOP-controlled Congress, only the wealthiest and the biggest polluters have come out ahead.

Clean Bandit … Easter Sunday Concert in MN



I think Yahoo made the Clean Bandit concert on Easter Sunday available to watch over and over if you are so inclined; for those who got too busy, forgot, tuned in late or got the time completely wrong and missed it all. I was using Minneapolis time 2hrs earlier; thankfully, I only missed one song ~ I lucked out.  I hope no one missed the concert because of my misinformation

The concert! My take …   Check it out !

It was tight; this crowd from the Midwest danced, sang with and appreciated Clean Bandit with a fab house electronic sound! The smooth transitions from song to song made it more fun… Elisabeth troy works that voice hard and sounds unbelievable live. The backdrop and lighting were great! I definitely loved what Elisabeth and Grace wore, the boys looked tidy. My favourites, probably all fan favourites got some major play on Easter Sunday and they added Nightingale!, Stronger ,did the classic “Show Me Love” probably betta than any along with one of a couple of new songs they have called “Superstar” as Elisabeth troy, said…. something Jack has been cooking up in the lab; it was hot and well Jack’s got skills on that song, sounding hot on the sax. If anything maybe the background girls need to be just a little louder on that song, but not too loud, because fans want to hear Elisabeth’s voice! and Damn! Elisabeth did some things with her voice, no one else can. I have to say, Grace is sounding better, Neil is kinda skinny, but by far the best looking skilled house music/classical violinist I have seen ever; time to get him more violin solos and  maybe singing with Elisabeth suffice it to say Jack on the sax was incredible and luke ..yes we kind of leave him out but the guy is an expert on the drums or as we say percussions because if you have seen him, he is clearly NOT just a drummer!.. hey, we all love that they are adding more instruments ..it’s exciting

The connections/interactions love of music between Elisabeth and Neil are always a highlight …um yeah they hot and we love them for it!

Overall, they were incredible! Hey, that’s just my view

 @cleanbandit https://screen.yahoo.com/live/event/clean-bandit via @YahooLive

Check it out yourself, if it’s still available

Thanks to Yahoo and Clean Bandit for a great Easter Show

#music #house #garage #youtube #concerts #cleanbandit #beaseedforchange

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Countdown: 30 Days Until Earth Day

45th Anniversary of Earth Day and this year “It’s Our Turn to Lead.”  Earth Day is only 30 days away – so join 1 billion people to take action!  With Earth Day rapidly approaching, we are reaching out to people like you who are committed to protecting and preserving our planet to help us lead the fight against climate change.

We need you to host an event on Earth Day or during Earth Week (April 18-25) to promote awareness of environmental issues and more importantly, to take concrete actions to create a sustainable planet and solve climate change.

Earth Day Network has developed toolkits to help you create change:

1. Government Officials: We call on all government officials to host town halls and Earth Day events to engage constituents and community members in a dialogue about environmental challenges and solutions to those challenges.

2. Universities: University students and activists are one of the most effective vehicles for social action. Host a  Climate Communication Forums on your college campuses this year. Students can translate their education and knowledge into tangible action promoting sustainability within their school and larger community.

3. Schools or K-12 Education: We invite educators to participate in Climate Education Week, April 18-25th. Earth Day Network will soon be releasing an easy-to-use, ready-to-go online toolkit on Climate Education that educators can utilize throughout the week.

4. Faith: Faith leaders have been a driving force behind the most important and successful social movements. We encourage all people of faith across the globe to join us on Earth Day this April as we show the world that it’s our turn to lead.

5. Let’s commit 100%: We are calling on cities and municipalities to commit to using 100% renewable energy sources by 2050.  Cities and municipalities face difficult challenges such as disaster relief, food and water shortages, and providing clean transportation to residents.  Committing to be 100% renewable is fundamental to addressing these challenges.

6. Global Citizen 2015 Earth Day:  Marking the 45th anniversary of Earth Day, Earth Day Network and Global Poverty Project present Global Citizen 2015 Earth Day. This comes during a pivotal time to protect the planet and ensure that world leaders end global poverty and solve climate change. Add your voice to 250,000 other leaders and stars on the National Mall, April 18.

With only 30 days until Earth Day, don’t miss your opportunity to make a lasting impact in your community and on our planet.  Commit to hosting an Earth Day event and register your event here.

— The Earth Day Network Team

Roadless forests under attack–help stop new coal mining on roadless lands!

Give today!

Our roadless forests are under attack!

A thicket of aspen in the Sunset Roadless Area. (Ted Zukoski / Earthjustice)

Arch Coal just got the go-ahead to bulldoze for dirty coal in one of our pristine roadless national forest areas.
Help us fight back!

Arch Coal is at it again.

On April 6, the Forest Service announced it was paving the way for the second-largest coal company in the United States to bulldoze across thousands acres of pristine roadless forests in order to mine up to 350 million tons of coal.

When final, this deal will allow Arch Coal to reap huge profits while adding hundreds of millions of tons of climate pollution to our atmosphere—all at the expense of thousands of acres of beautiful, wild and public roadless forest.

I’m furious. And today, I’m asking for your help.

We’ve successfully stopped Arch Coal in the past. We can do it again.

Will you help us stand up to dirty industry with a gift of $5 or more?

As someone who has hiked in the Sunset Roadless Area for over a decade, I can tell you that this land is beautiful, and it provides important habitat for wildlife such as black bears and rare lynx in addition to beaver ponds, aspen stands, and giant spruce.

But unless we fight back and win, Arch Coal will soon turn this special place into an industrial zone of drill pads and roads—destroying wildlife habitat and valued recreation and hunting areas—all to benefit a single corporation.

Additionally, burning the 350 million tons of coal the company would extract would dramatically undercut efforts to slow the pace of climate change.

My team and I are determined to protect this critical habitat and ensure vital long-term protections for our other national forests…but we need your urgent gift today to see this and other difficult legal battles through.

For decades, Earthjustice has taken the lead to fight dirty energy and protect roadless forests across the country, but today we need your help.

We’ve stopped Arch Coal before. Help us win once again.

Thank you,

Staff photo

Ted Zukoski
Earthjustice, Rocky Mountains Office