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July 28, 2021

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Friday, July 2, 2021

Hey, Perino! You Want Breathless Indignance? I’ll Show You Some Breathless Indignance…

So, here’s the scenario:  Sarah Palin praises the Obama administration.   Yes, this has actually happened.   Palin did it once before, when she praised Obama’s energy plan.  But that was before her nomination as the Republican Vice Presidential candidate, after which she did a turnabout quicker than you can say “Drill, Baby Drill!”

But now it has happened again.  And it means that either Sarah Palin has suddenly been struck on the head by a blunt object, rendering her capable of siding with someone who is not only on the other side, but also a “fed”, or it means that the Obama administration has done something many progressives are not going to like very much.  Unfortunately, it’s the latter.

Here’s the situation in a nutshell.  The Endangered Species Act says that if an animal species is in danger of becoming extinct, you can’t keep doing the thing that’s causing the problem.  So, if you’ve got a salamander that lives in one particular swamp and nowhere else, you can’t drain the swamp and build condos.  If you have an owl that relies on a certain area of woodland, you can’t chop down all the trees.  That’s the way the law works.

Take polar bears, for instance.  If you find out that polar bears are in danger of becoming extinct, and that the reason for this is the alarmingly fast melting of sea ice in the Arctic, and you know that the reason that the ice is melting is because of climate change, you can’t just keep ignoring science and warming the planet any old way you feel like it.  There are going to have to be rules and reform.

But we can’t do THAT, says Interior Secretary under the Bush administration, Dirk Kempthorne.  That would mean a major commitment to radically changing how we do energy.  That would mean admitting global warming exists, acknowledging that we can control how that happens, and instituting aggressive measures to limit the burning of fossil fuels!  And we’ll have none of that because if you’re going to make us choose between the oil and gas industry and some marine mammal that you can’t even eat….well, forget about it.

Environmentalists had high hopes that Ken Salazar, the new Interior Secretary for Barack Obama would undo some of the ills of the previous administration when it comes to climate change policy as it affects the Arctic, and thereby the rest of the planet.  But, it seems we were expecting too much.

“We must do all we can to help the polar bear recover, recognizing that the greatest threat to the polar bear is the melting of Arctic sea ice caused by climate change,” Salazar said in a statement. “However, the Endangered Species Act is not the proper mechanism for controlling our nation’s carbon emissions. Instead, we need a comprehensive energy and climate strategy that curbs climate change and its impacts — including the loss of sea ice. Both President Obama and I are committed to achieving that goal.”

So, the argument goes, we will do all we can, except apply the law.  And we know what the problem is, and we know this is a vehicle for making those changes happen sooner rather than later, but we’re not going to take it.   We’ll find some other way, somewhere down the road.  Some day.

 This is a clear victory for Alaska,” Governor Palin said. “We all want to preserve and protect the polar bear using the best possible tools, but there is absolutely no need to change the … rule to accomplish this purpose. I want to thank Secretary Salazar for his careful review of the science and the administrative record that led to this decision.”

Yes we all want to preserve and protect the polar bear using the best possible tools.  (opens toolbox)  Hey, Governor, how about this tool.  That’ll do the job!  No, says she.  It’s not the best.  I don’t have any idea what tool IS the best, nor what it looks like or where to find it, and I really don’t care to find out.  But have a nice day.

Basically what we’ve just witnessed here is another version of THIS.  Yes, that’s Ken Salazar and Sarah Palin last month in Anchorage.  And yes, that’s the shot that forced me to create a new blog category named “Ick.”

Former Whitehouse spokeswoman Dana Perino remembered when Kempthorne’s original declaration was met with outrage by environmental groups, the public and the press.

Where are the breathless and indignant above-the-fold, page one newspaper stories? And the cute photos of the polar bears standing on floating ice floes? Where are the pointed allegations of ‘rollback’ on the cable news scrolls? Where is the bluster and the cynical barbs from the talking heads?”

Bitter much?   And is it me, or did Dick Cheney and Dana Perino not get the memo that they can go home now?

But in the spirit of bipartisanship, and as a parting gift (we hope) for Ms. Perino, I breathlessly and indignantly give her this blustery, cynical posting of a cute photo of a polar bear on a floating piece of ice.  Now she may leave, and use her free time to learn all about the Cuban Missile Crisis.  It’s really quite fascinating.  I think we can handle things just fine without her.

7thday1

Comments

comments

Comments
46 Responses to “Hey, Perino! You Want Breathless Indignance? I’ll Show You Some Breathless Indignance…”
  1. Moose Pucky says:

    Lately, that’s exactly what they have been doing–trying their luck on the mainland.

    One polar bear was shot near Ft. Yukon last year and one dispatched on the Dempster Highway near Ft. McPherson the year before.

    There’s going to be tough times ahead.

  2. KaJo says:

    You know what they say about Republicans, give ’em an inch and they’ll take a mile — Sarah Palin is getting some “victory” mileage out of that declaration by Salazar, for sure.

    As for that poor polar bear, the picture isn’t cute at all, it’s desperate and sad. Just look at the background, water everywhere. What are the polar bears supposed to do when ice is melting all around them, pack their bags and migrate to Eagle, AK or other ice-flooded villages? They simply drown, I imagine…

  3. Chester says:

    No breathless and indignant stories because, guess what? The Obama Administration has actually made stopping global warming a top priority, and know what? There’s not a damn thing you and the other knuckle scrapers can do about it. Have a nice day.

  4. AlaskaDisasta says:

    That sound you heard was a little of Obama’s shine falling to the floor, slightly tarnished.

    Given the pressure we are putting on ALL wildlife, and the diseases we encourage by raising our ‘meat’ in disgusting concentration camps which make the animals’ short lives wretched at best, it won’t be long before we have to revert to cannibalism or outright vegetarianism to keep our greedy, destructive species going.

  5. Moose Pucky says:

    The difference, Dana Perino, is that Salazar said the words “Polar bears are important and global warming and the melting of the sea ice is their greatest threat.”

    Kempthorne, on the other hand, still denies that Snake and Columbia River dams are the primary cause of the loss of Idaho’s salmon runs. Kempthorne does not straighforwardly acknowledge the real problem of global warming and the loss of sea ice as the most serious threat to polar bears.

    Huge difference.

    I’m trusting that Obama/Salazar have some more effective measures up their sleeves–for example, a smarter energy policy overall, a commitment to energy conservation and green jobs, a greater emphasis on renewable energy–actual policies backed with real money and real jobs and real financial incentives to do the right thing–not merely the winning of a legal argument.

    The endangered species act has been used to win legal arguments for salmon recovery–that have actually never been implemented. The use of the ES Act in this case may, actually, not be the best tool for the job.

    Still okay, however, to hold everyone’s feet to the fire and keep those images of polar bears in the forefront.

  6. grainnekathleen says:

    great post! i saw salazar on the daily show and didn’t like his attitude much. he does not seem like he has a great dedication to the environment. and now that photo with palin – ICK!!!! is right!
    let’s hope we can wear them down on this point. with even the christian right getting into environmentalism, maybe we do have a chance at curtailing climate change.

  7. Marnie says:

    The only real hope for Polar Bears and a great many other threatened animals, and eventually H. sapiens is for us to run out of petroleum ASAP. Then the earth can begin to heal itself.
    Of course that means a lot of species will go extinct, as the healing will take millennia.
    Humans will have vastly less food, since farming world wide is very dependant on petroleum based fertilizers, and petroleum manufactured and fueled machinery, irrigation and transport.

    Has anyone seen a European bear for the last 1500 years or so? There really used to be one.

    It is estimated that by the middle ages 150 species of large animals (large meaning macroscopic) had become extinct on the British Isles, all as a result of the invasion of one new species, H. sapiens.

  8. DrChill says:

    If I may suggest an addition: “Where’s the outrage!?”
    I see this a lot from people who think that monitoring outrage like monitoring volcanoes amounts to something…
    The same folks often assume a criticism of policy or behavior is a personal ‘attack.’
    They themselves often engage in ad homonym arguments, and seem to exhibit loyalty to their group or chosen one, sometimes more than their own credo.

    As for me, I find some decisions from the Obama administration disappointing, but far less so than the Bush Administration. I also factor in the belief that the Bush administration didn’t actually believe global warming was important, while the Obama administration does.
    I suppose the Obama administration is taking a middle road approach, ‘practical’, but disappointing IMO.

  9. MonaLisa IS MY NAME! says:

    I had a more than passing worry during the hearings: If Salazar had determined differently, how long before oil-money would have ‘somehow’ found its way into the pockets of less-than-scrupulous ‘hunters’?

  10. Karin in CT says:

    @ 17 public virtue49 & 18 Lee323: Thanks. My thoughts exactly.

  11. sauerkraut says:

    28 Physicsmom Says: May 11th, 2009 at 11:20 PM

    GINO just needs to keep her trap shut
    __________________

    Good luck with that one!

  12. sauerkraut says:

    28 Physicsmom Says: May 11th, 2009 at 11:20 PM

    Others here have said it better, but I especially liked the idea of “endangered habitat” as a category which needs to be protected.
    ____________

    absolutely. take the tundra swan as an example. one of its key nesting areas is in ANWR. let’s not allow that to become much more of an “endangered habitat.” if the environmentalist here in pennsyltucky can get themselves so worked up over “view sheds” then they certainly can put more attention and effort into “endangered habitats.” same with people in other states, especially gino.

  13. sauerkraut says:

    31 UK Lady Says: May 12th, 2009 at 12:42 AM

    Palin is an annoying little narcissist.

    _______________

    Amen to that.

    Interesting symbolism with the bear stranded on that… ummm. … phallus.

  14. Gramiam says:

    UK, you are spot on!!! That video WAS dead funny. Loved it.

    I have to agree with a number of people here who have said that the President and his advisors are shrewdly not allowing themselves to be sidetracked from the “Big Picture”. The righties and naysayers would love nothing better than to drown this administration in little details to derail the important changes we need to make. I can’t wait until they lower the boom on Madam Sarah.

  15. .
    I’m afraid it may not just be conservatards that don’t realize Stephen Coldbear is goofing. Sounds like he made a joke about ursine environmental policy, and the White House didn’t quite get it.
    .

  16. UK Lady says:

    All has been said that I agree with, Obama is looking at the big picture and trying not to get bogged down with doing things piecemeal.

    Palin is an annoying little narcissist.

    Dana is looking to turn a buck, maybe she will become a Faux News regular with her own show. Ack!

    Anyhow, have a look at this vid, it is right on target in the last minute, 3 mins long and dead funny.

    http://andrewsullivan.theatlantic.com/the_daily_dish/2009/05/out-of-the-mouths-of-babes.html

  17. Everything coming out of Sarah Palin’s mouth makes my head hurt. She clearly didn’t understand what Salazar was saying. I got it when I read it, though I wasn’t happy about it. It still remains to be seen whether anything is going to be done to address the larger issue. That’s the part that Palin didn’t get – that there is a possibility that we will have to change the way we treat the environment.

    The very sad thing is that it may really be too late for the polar bears, no matter what course is taken. And Sarah Palin doesn’t care – not about the polar bears, or the wolves or any other creature besides herself.

  18. Super Bee says:

    I hate to be so pessimistic but personally think we’re all doomed and if not us then our kids or their kids. To try to get the US to change is a monumental undertaking and will take a long time but trying to get the rest of the world to follow suit. I get a headache just thinking about it.

  19. Physicsmom says:

    I hate to say it, but I agree with Secretary Salazar. Others here have said it better, but I especially liked the idea of “endangered habitat” as a category which needs to be protected. The world and the U.S. are coming around to working on climate change. The sad part is that it may just be too late for the polar bear. In the meantime, GINO just needs to keep her trap shut; this is a victory for no one.

  20. Martha Unalaska Yard Sign says:

    I agree with public virtue49… there is more here than meets the eye…

  21. Lee323 says:

    18 curiouser Says:
    May 11th, 2009 at 9:41 PM
    “I can’t stand hearing Palin talk about the polar bears and I get really livid when I see her wearing that polar bear pin.”
    ————————————————–

    She’s so hypocritical, eh? Everything with her is about image…..

    It was a sad day for Alaska and the Great White Grandfather of the North (polar bear) when the Heaths decamped Idaho and headed there.

  22. karen marie says:

    and of course, you guys understood i meant “still confident” …

  23. karen marie says:

    sarah palin may be happy about this, she may feel like she has won, but she hasn’t really. to my understanding, this decision does not change the protection status of polar bears. it just says that you can’t tie energy and climate policy decisions to polar bears.

    the reality is that stopping the melting of polar ice is infinitely more complicated than maintaining an old growth forest.

    if we don’t get carbon emissions and other pollutants under control losing the polar bears is going to be the least of our problems.

    i am till confident that the president will move us toward reducing our carbon emissions, a task he has already begun, but he can’t make promises to the polar bears that he can’t keep.

  24. curiouser says:

    Thinking about this some more….I am definitely confused.

    Didn’t SP sue the federal govt under Bush to remove the polar bear from being covered under the Endangered Species Act? If so, wouldn’t the fed. govt. have the ability, with the current rules, to prevent drilling, mining, etc. that further endangers the polar bear?

  25. rocket says:

    Nitpick time:

    It’s Dana Perino – only one R.

    Credibility is increased when facts, names. etc are correct.

    It’s also increased by the presence of an editor! But since I have none, I appreciate the correction. AKM

  26. Kath the Scrappy from Seattle says:

    @ Lee323, May 11th, 2009 at 9:23 PM

    Thank you for explaining so concisely. When I first read I, too, was having a mixed reaction. Instead of pinning all on the endangered polar bear, there needs to be a more comprehensive, overall method. So that, if by odd chance a change in politics in 2, 4, 8 yrs, it’s not ALL tagged to the Endangered Species list. That picture tears my heart out, the bewildered look on the poor bear’s face, and I admit I’ve signed petitions to Salazar on behalf of the polar bear.

    But I rather think there needs to be a BIGGER HAMMER to cover this case. Look at the spotted owl. All those years of debate and they’re still up for status review every time we turn around. The owls never seem safe over the long term. This is a much bigger problem, IMO.

    That pic of Palin/Salazar makes me want to puke. He’s whispering in her ear, she’s looking her sexiest (makes more press and she can get her Mugshot in the ADN) cause he’s whispering sweet nothings to the empty space between her ears. Ick!

  27. Not your Pal Palin says:

    I have to agree on this one that the ESA is not adequate to address an issue as global as climate change. We need new legislation to deal with this problem. The ESA has already been stretched as far as it can be, and we’ve needed an endangered habitat act (EHA) for a long time now. We can’t take on this issue a species at a time.

  28. curiouser says:

    17 Lee323 Says:
    May 11th, 2009 at 9:23 PM
    I could care the less what Palin says about this subject……………..
    I’m willing to give Obama and the rest of the world leaders the chance to come up with a policy that addresses global warming. If it works, the polar bears (and everyone else) will benefit. If it gets bogged down by legal wrangling, criticisms that the policy isn’t perfect, or stalemates…..everyone is going to suffer. We have to start somewhere…..
    ————–

    Wow, I was just trying to submit a comment about not giving up on the Obama administration when my internet connection failed and deleted the comment. You said it so much better.

    I do disagree with your first sentence. I can’t stand hearing Palin talk about the polar bears and I get really livid when I see her wearing that polar bear pin.

  29. Lee323 says:

    I could care the less what Palin says about this subject. Her days are numbered.

    The key to understanding the decision is this quote by Salazar:

    “….. the Endangered Species Act is not the proper mechanism for controlling our nation’s carbon emissions. Instead, we need a comprehensive energy and climate strategy that curbs climate change and its impacts — including the loss of sea ice. Both President Obama and I are committed to achieving that goal.”

    Using the Endangered Species Act as a LEGAL MECHANISM to drive a comprehensive policy for addressing global warming is not realistic or even ultimately workable on the world-wide scale needed for any detectable changes in global warming. In fact, entangling the legal rights of endangered species from thousands of habitats throughout the world into the formative stages of a global warming policy could result in legal stalemates or endless potentially opposing lawsuits for each individual species’ needs.

    The mechanisms for evaluating the polar bears’ endangered status are already in place with The Endangered Species Act. Declining sea ice, for whatever the reason, can be used as a legitimate and pressing reason for placing the polar bears on the endangered list. We must continue to rally to keep the spotlight on the polar bears and work for their inclusion onto the Endangered List through the mechanisms provided (via the Department of Fish and Wildlife).

    Meanwhile….we finally have a president and administration who are actually interested in developing a “comprehensive energy and climate strategy that curbs climate change and its impacts — including the loss of sea ice.” The big difference in Kempthorne’s/Salazar’s declaration is that Big-Oil Bush is no longer the freaking president.

    I’m willing to give Obama and the rest of the world leaders the chance to come up with a policy that addresses global warming. If it works, the polar bears (and everyone else) will benefit. If it gets bogged down by legal wrangling, criticisms that the policy isn’t perfect, or stalemates…..everyone is going to suffer. We have to start somewhere…..

  30. public virtue49 says:

    I am an environmentalist and I agree with Ken Salazar, The issue in his decision was not whether polar bears are threatened by global warming. Nor was the issue whether polar bears should be protected.

    The issue is how do we best address global warming. The Obama Adminstration’s point is that global warming should be addressed by national legislation and comprehensive rulemaking by EPA — Not by using the clunky project-by-project review process of the Endangered Species Act to try and address a global problem.

    It is an issue of how you remedy the problem; not whether there is a problem.

    Obama and Salzar are on the right track. Do not loose hope.

  31. Bret says:

    Gee, I forgot all about that photo and clicked on it. EYE BLEACH STAT! I think I need a shower.

  32. Dr. Patois says:

    Also too, “the administrative record that led to this decision”. I seem to recall the record will show that BushCo refused to allow the release of EPA findings unless they said what he wanted them to say.

  33. Dr. Patois says:

    This is especially sad because the Senate gave Salazar the ability to throw out the Bush ESA rule changes even with Murkowski and Begich trying to prevent it. Gino doesn’t care about energy efficiency so don’t hold your breath on her lifting a manicured finger to stop climate change. It really disturbs me how she spins things. Putting aside the declaration that it is a “clear victory for Alaska” (yeesh), “I want to thank Secretary Salazar for his careful review of the science and the administrative record that led to this decision.”

    The science? As if the science, that she knows nothing of, agrees with her? She never cared about climate change to begin with. As I understand it, and I am happy to be corrected, Gino didn’t want the polar bears listed as endangered because that might prevent her from mining, and dumping toxic waste, and drill baby drilling.

    Clearly NOT a victory for Alaska or anywhere.

  34. pvazwindy says:

    The pic tugs at you, and Palin will hang the last polar bear. I wish it was she on that ice floe.

  35. akshelby says:

    Thanks for writing on this. I was sickened last night when I heard about the decision. Sickened, but not surprised at all. I do hope something is done to save them before they disappear.

  36. Lori in Los Angeles says:

    The link to the photo of Ken Salazar and Sarah Palin last month in Anchorage says it all. We have to keep horny old men away from her, or we can expect more damage. Sickening.

  37. clark says:

    portland, OR has more people commuting to work by bicycle than any other city in the US — but it still amounts to less than 5 percent of the workforce.
    we have to be stopped.

  38. Say NO to Palin in Politics says:

    Say it AKM…….. write like you can.

    It’s soooo sad and sickening.

  39. austintx says:

    Thank you for the post. From the first time I saw Dana and she uttered her first word , I have wanted to pimp slap her. That snot nose , “I’m a Bushie – so I’m right” attitude just really ticks me off. And yes AKM , the memo did not reach some of these turds.

  40. seattlefan says:

    Ooops!

    I left out a very important word in the last sentence of my post (#5) and that was “anger”. I could feel the anger in your post and I am angry as well.

  41. The Rubber Room Hotel says:

    ZING! Nice AKM! You voice the outrage I feel very well.
    Another grat post!

  42. seattlefan says:

    Great post! That photo is heartbreaking. What am I going to do? I’m sending your post to the White House with my own comments. (Don’t worry…I will send a link, not the actual post.)

    Anytime Governor Palin agrees with our current administration, there is something very wrong and amiss. It can only be in her favor to do so. I could feel the in your post and I am angry as well.

  43. Star says:

    Soooo beautiful…Sooo sad…

  44. Cynamen Winter says:

    That photograph pretty much says it all….

  45. ENOUGHwiththetrainwreck says:

    i was just wondering what wonderful story you were cooking up for this evening.

  46. WakeUpAmerica says:

    It all makes me sick. What kind of world is it going to be with no polar bears?

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