If you're driving a battery powered car, enjoy the ride, but please......... don't act smug.
Acknowledge the child slaves who helped produce it. Think about the extraordinary volume of water used to mine metals for the car's energy. Think about the environmental toll the battery car imposes on Mother Earth.
When a politician says "Zero Emission Vehicle," referring to an electric car, consider the claim a bald-faced lie. Do not let it go unchallenged. Show up at e-car promotional events and ask them to stop advancing hazardous mining and human rights atrocities as clean and just. Don't be duped by the "green car" myth.
Colorado politicians out-"greening" each other are forcing a "Zero Emission Vehicle" car revolution few consumers want. This summer the Colorado Air Quality Control Commission adopted California's "Zero Emission Vehicle" standard without legislation or meaningful public process. It means electric cars must comprise 5% of all car dealer sales by 2023. We can expect more battery mandates-by-fiat as California enacts them.
In the latest push for electric cars, the Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment will partner this week with Denver city and county officials for an event titled "Pass Gas." Between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. Thursday, politicians will encourage attendees to "Pass Gas" on Bannock Street, between 14th and Colfax avenues, by test-driving electric cars.
"Shrink your contribution to climate change and help improve the air we breathe by passing gas and driving electric," implores the Denver city/county website.
Anyone who follows this advice should know of a recent warning by Amnesty International, which called out the electric car industry for abuses of human rights and the environment.
"Amnesty International has documented serious human rights violations linked to the extraction of the minerals used in lithium-ion batteries," explained the organization in a written statement in March.
Amnesty found the worst violations in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). Americans pretending they can save the planet with a vehicular fashion statement is the last thing DRC residents need.
More than 70% of the Congolese people lack adequate access to food; 23% of children suffer malnutrition. Life expectancy is 48 years for men; 52 for women. Infant mortality ranks among the highest in the world. They would benefit from access to more fossil fuels -- energy products the American left hopes to eliminate.
To help phase out fossil fuel production, left-wing politicians want more batteries. The children of Africa and other underdeveloped regions get stuck with the trench work. Amnesty reports of finding "children and adults in southern DRC working in hand-dug cobalt mines facing serious health risks, neither protected by the government nor respected by companies that profit from their labor." Amnesty's research links the mines to "electric vehicle companies."
"With more than half of the world's cobalt originating in southern DRC, the chance that the batteries powering electric vehicles are tainted with child labor and other abuses is unacceptably high," Amnesty reports.
UNICEF, the United Nations Children's Fund, discovered more than 40,000 kids working in battery-car mines in 2014 in the southern DRC alone. The number has likely climbed substantially in five years with the political propagation of "ZEV" cars.
Amnesty's concerns with battery cars don't stop with inhumane mining.
"Most of the current manufacturing of lithium-ion batteries is concentrated in China, South Korea and Japan, where electricity generation remains dependent on coal and other polluting sources of power," the organization reports. "...Meanwhile, rising demand for minerals like cobalt, manganese and lithium has led to a surge in interest in deep-sea mining, which studies predict will have serious and irreversible impacts on biodiversity."
The publication Engineering.com found identical concerns and more when it analyzed battery cars for a 2018 article titled "Will Your Electric Car Save the World or Wreck It?" The article explains the unsustainable and environmentally hazardous process of mining metals for battery cars, adding: "Even if the mining industry were ecologically sustainable, lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries have been known to explode and/or catch fire. Avoiding such incidents, the batteries are extremely difficult to recycle, often resulting in the disposal of a spent, but still toxic and flammable battery in your local landfill."
Though consumers use L-ion batteries in their mobile phones, those gadgets play a comparatively small role in the growing demand for child labor. To compare a cell phone to a battery car, Engineering.com explains, "is like comparing a matchstick to a bonfire." An iPhone weighs a few ounces; Tesla's Model S battery contains 26 pounds of lithium alone, not to mention the assortment of other elements extracted from mines.
The article explains how mining a ton of lithium requires 500,000 gallons of water, which gets tainted with chemicals. Battery car mining consumes up to 65% of the water in some regions, "diverting it from local food production."
"Residents near Chinese graphite mines have remarked on the sparkly nature of air particles, with the dust ultimately contaminating food and water supplies," Engineering.com explains. "In areas surrounding nickel mines, there have been increased rates of deformities and respiratory problems linked to pollution from nickel mining and smelting."
Meanwhile, gasoline and diesel cars support six-figure blue-collar wages for adults (only) working at safe, strictly regulated wellheads throughout Colorado and other parts of the United States. Battery cars move us away from that peaceful arrangement. They push us toward an industry of unregulated child labor and environmental degradation we don't have to look at.
"Pass Gas" with a battery car and appease a politician -- understanding the humanitarian and environmental footprint, which does not pass the smell test.
If I can produce someone who saw John Roberts' penis in college, can we get the Obamacare opinion overturned?
As all MSNBC viewers are well aware, last Sunday's edition of The New York Times ran an excerpt of the book "The Education of Brett Kavanaugh: An Investigation," by Robin Pogrebin and Kate Kelly, which revives Debbie Ramirez's accusations against the Supreme Court nominee.
Quick reminder: This is NOT the Kavanaugh accuser with two front doors. It is NOT the Kavanaugh accuser whose own father warned that she had psychological problems.
This is the one who didn't remember what Kavanaugh did to her for more than 30 years, until a few lefty friends helpfully reminded her that they'd heard something about it from a guy, who heard it from a guy, whereupon she spent six days "assessing her memories" during the nomination hearings -- and darned if it didn't all come back to her!
What the guy who heard it from a guy heard was that, at a drunken party in a freshman dorm, Kavanaugh unzipped his pants and stuck his penis in Ramirez's face.
Contrary to Pogrebin and Kelly's claim that "at least" seven people "heard about the Yale incident long before Mr. Kavanaugh was a federal judge," this vast array of witnesses includes only one person whose secondhand, rumor-mill story includes both Kavanaugh and Ramirez: Kenneth Appold. (All we know about Appold is that he is a professor at the Princeton Theological Seminary, meaning that he is less likely to believe in God than any person not a professor at the Princeton Theological Seminary.)
The guy Appold claims he heard it from doesn't remember it.
]Are you following how absurd this is?
This is not merely hearsay; it's double hearsay offered by only one person, and he wasn't there, but he heard about it from another person, who denies knowledge of it. And the corpus delecti is something that happened with a group of drunk teenagers 35 years ago.
The main point made by the excerpt is to remind us that truth means nothing to liberals.
Here's the book's big new scoop:
"We also uncovered a previously unreported story about Mr. Kavanaugh in his freshman year that echoes Ms. Ramirez's allegation. A classmate, Max Stier, saw Mr. Kavanaugh with his pants down at a different drunken dorm party, where friends pushed his penis into the hand of a female student."
This story was on the Times' website for more than 24 hours when -- at close to midnight on Sunday -- the paper issued an "Editors' Note" admitting that the victim does not remember it.
I'm not even going to mention that Stier was a lawyer for Bill Clinton, defending him for whipping it out in front of Paula Jones, as governor of Arkansas. Obviously, that's not as serious as doing it as a college freshman.
But could some good reporter -- which excludes anyone in the mainstream media -- look into Stier's undergraduate years? Any embarrassing incidents when he was a freshman? Any rumors or third-hand accounts? While we're at it, can we get Stier's tax returns for the last 30 years? Where's Chuck Johnson when we need him?
Let's consider just the physics of Stier's story.
How can anyone, let alone two or more people, "push" a man's penis into another person's hand? Just how big is Brett Kavanaugh's penis, anyway? Wouldn't a man's penis, if it were able to be "pushed" by one's friends into third parties, need to be erect and at least 3 feet long? Don't push my penis, bro!
The best part of the Times excerpt is the Women's Temperance League tone of the piece.
"(Ramirez's Yale classmates) also had experience with drinking and sexual behavior that Ms. Ramirez -- who had not intended to be intimate with a man until her wedding night -- lacked. ... 'I had gone through high school, I'm the good girl, and now, in one evening, it was all ripped away,' she said in an interview. ..."
If someone from Bob Jones University said that her dreams of marital purity were "ripped away" because she saw a man's penis in college, liberals would never stop laughing."(Kavanaugh) was ... known to attend an annual teenage bacchanal called 'Beach Week,' where the hookups and drinking were more important than the sand and swimming."
It wasn't much of a "beach party" -- if you want to call it that. Instead of wholesome fun, the young people consumed alcoholic beverages and engaged in inappropriate flirting. Everyone said it was inappropriate -- not just us.
Most shocking, from a "Little House on the Prairie" perspective, was this:
"People ... would start to say 'Debbie does ...' playing on the 1978 porn movie 'Debbie Does Dallas.' But Ms. Ramirez didn't understand the reference."
Remind me: Aren't these the same people demanding that we teach kindergartners about "fisting"?
But the "Debbie Does Defamation" authors weren't finished. "(Kavanaugh) came of age during the era of 'Porky's' and 'Fast Times at Ridgemont High.'"
Ha! What do you say, NOW, Trumpsters?
Ruth Bader Ginsburg "came of age during the era of" the Bay of Pigs and the Vietnam War. Can we impeach her?
I'm beginning to suspect that, instead of writing the book, Pogrebin and Kelly screwed around for six months, then pulled an all-nighter the day before it was due. Also, "American Pie" was big!
But half the Democratic candidates for president are demanding Kavanaugh's impeachment on the basis of this sublime idiocy. Trump touched their SCOTUS!
On Sept. 15, The New York Times ran a long Sunday Review article by its reporters Robin Pogrebin and Kate Kelly in which they promoted their new book, "The Education of Brett Kavanaugh: An Investigation."
The book could be titled "Bitter Tears for Leftists." You knew it was going to happen. Just as they cannot concede that Donald Trump won the presidency, they refuse to accept Brett Kavanaugh's confirmation to the Supreme Court.
There are men of honor on the left. Former Sens. Joe Lieberman and Jay Rockefeller were at odds with conservatives their entire careers. But neither stooped, nor would they ever stoop, to something like this, working with people such as these.
These are not just liberal activists. They are leftist agitators who specialize in the art of character assassination. They are radicals for whom truth means nothing. Only results matter.
And they work at The New York Times.
The article was a sob story touting Deborah Ramirez, whose accusation was originally championed by The New Yorker's Jane Mayer, who smeared Clarence Thomas back in 1991. It was titled "Brett Kavanaugh Fit in With the Privileged Kids. She Did Not."
The Times opinion section signaled its malignant intentions when it put out this bizarre tweet: "Having a penis thrust in your face at a drunken dorm party may seem like harmless fun. But when Brett Kavanaugh did it to her, Deborah Ramirez says, it confirmed that she didn't belong at Yale in the first place." It was deleted within minutes, and The Times confessed it was "poorly phrased."
Find your target. Toss a hand grenade. Watch it explode and blow him to pieces. Then claim it was "poorly aimed."
This exercise is happening with the press, including The New York Times, with such regularity it is no longer shocking.
The Times reporters hoped to restore Ramirez's shattered credibility by uncorking a new allegation that sounded very much like hers. They had found someone who claims to have witnessed Kavanaugh expose himself at a (SET ITAL) second (END ITAL) alcohol-soaked party at Yale.
It didn't matter whether there was no more proof than the first discredited allegation. Just as the networks did before, they leaped into action on Sunday night and Monday morning, touting a new allegation of sexual assault against the newest Supreme Court justice. Five Democratic presidential candidates immediately jumped on Twitter to insist Kavanaugh should be impeached.
Except it isn't evidence. This is recycled garbage.
Follow the wording: "We also uncovered a previously unreported story about Mr. Kavanaugh in his freshman year that echoes Ms. Ramirez's allegation. A classmate, Max Stier, saw Mr. Kavanaugh with his pants down at a different drunken dorm party, where friends pushed his penis into the hand of a female student."
This is not an allegation. They didn't write that Stier "states he saw" or "alleges he saw" the indecent exposure. Stier "saw" it. What proof did Stier offer that would make this unchallenged fact?
They didn't say they talked to Stier but that they "corroborated the story with two officials who have communicated with Mr. Stier," two anonymous sources who say that he says he saw.
That's it. That's enough for the left to insist a good man be destroyed -- again. So why didn't Stier come forward himself? Stier is the CEO of the Partnership for Public Service, which strives to appear nonpartisan ... although he gave $1,000 to Barack Obama for president, according to OpenSecrets.
Speaking of agendas, nowhere did The Times note that Stier was a lawyer at Williams & Connolly in the 1990s and defended then-President Clinton during Ken Starr's independent counsel investigation. Kavanaugh was on Starr's staff at the time.
And then, as if this ridiculous charade couldn't get any worse, it was pointed out that Pogrebin and Kelly's article omitted a crucial finding that appears in their book. It turns out Stier's storied victim ... never said she's a victim! So The Times had to run a correction that said: "The book reports that the female student declined to be interviewed and friends say that she does not recall the incident. That information has been added to the article."
Even that correction is slippery. "(D)oes not recall the incident" keeps the accusation alive. How about the student "has no idea what the hell they're talking about"?
They can't even excerpt their own book correctly? Who thought this junk was ready for publication in a newspaper -- or a book?
Conservatives on Twitter were blunt. Sen. Ted Cruz, for example, said, "If a high-school freshman did this on a school paper, he'd get an F."
Fox News' Brit Hume summed it up perfectly: "This smear was disgusting the first time around. This attempt to revive it is beyond disgusting and speaks to the dishonesty of leading organs of the mainstream media. They are corrupt.
L. Brent Bozell III and Tim Graham
When you consider how much the Democratic establishment loathes President Donald Trump, it's just plain sad to watch a Democratic primary that has yet to offer up a front-runner who has Democrats truly jazzed about the election.
Insiders are waiting for former Veep Joe Biden, 76, not so much to stumble, as to stumble and not be able to get up afterward.
At 73, Trump is no spring chicken, but he exudes a vitality Biden lacks.
Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, 78, is a lovable scold to his die-hard supporters, and he's genuine. So why aren't Democrats more enthusiastic about him?
Elizabeth Warren, 70, is a great campaigner who gained strength during the long slog that she began as the Democrat with a dubious claim to being Native American. And still, the party apparatus has not coalesced behind her.
And below that top-tier of Nestors are a pack of middle-aged opportunists who stand out for their willingness to say anything to generate buzz.
"Hell, yes, we're going to take away your AR-15, your AK-47," former Texas congressman Beto O'Rourke crowed in response to a question.
An August Fox News poll shows that two-thirds of Americans support an assault weapons ban. No doubt many Democrats see such polls and hence see no problem with a candidate calling for such a ban.
So they don't realize that O'Rourke's comment probably prompted countless gun owners to run out and buy the guns they hate. And they certainly don't think about the carnage that would ensue if the government actually tried to take those weapons from otherwise law-abiding owners' cold, live hands.
"I frankly think that clip will be played for years at Second Amendment rallies with organizations that try to scare people by saying Democrats are coming for your guns," said Sen. Chris Coons, D-Del., to CNN.
The ABC-led team of debate moderators didn't help. There was no pointed follow up. No mention of the fact that a year ago after the host told O'Rourke he owned an AR-15, O'Rourke told "The Chad Hasty Show": "If you own a gun, keep that gun. Nobody wants to take it away from you."
"The Democrats and the media, it's as if they're one," Trump observed during a speech at a House policy retreat in Baltimore delivered in the same time slot.
Univision anchor Jorge Ramos challenged Biden: "Are you prepared to say tonight that you and President Obama made a mistake about deportations? Why should Latinos trust you?"
Ramos offered no recognition that Obama was enforcing federal law -- which is part of the job description. His question was based on the assumption that it was wrong to enforce the law. And he presumed to talk for all Latinos.
Biden should have defended Obama for doing his job -- and rightly discouraging Central American migrants who would not qualify for asylum from crossing the border. In a different election year, Biden probably would have defended enforcing immigration law instinctively.
Instead, Biden denied that the Obama administration put migrants in cages or separated families.
Politifact rated Biden's claim as "false." The fact-checking organization noted that while Trump has a tougher approach to family separation, the Obama administration did put children in chain-linked enclosures. That is, Biden was gutless and wrong.
In the words of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in 2014: "We have to send a clear message: Just because your child gets across the border, that doesn't mean your child gets to stay. We don't want to send a message that's contrary to our laws or (it) will encourage more children to make that dangerous journey."
That sort of commonsense thinking went out the window during a 2016 presidential debate when, under Ramos' questioning, Clinton changed her position and pledged not to deport undocumented immigrants who don't have a criminal record. The tail wagged the dog. That's how the Democrats' got a field with no clear star.
Over and over again, I hear Democrats say that Trump's tenure in the White House is untenable, that they'll do whatever it takes to win back the White House. Well, anything but stand up for positions they held five years ago. Anything but try to understand what the middle thinks. Anything but allow a debate on Fox News.
Debra J. Saunders