Sunday, December 7, 2014

Republican AGs Gang Up To Defeat States' Energy Policies

Republican "attorneys general in at least a dozen states are working with energy companies and other corporate interests [to change energy policy], which in turn are providing them with record amounts of money for their political campaigns, including at least $16 million this year."

That remarkable finding of yet another major sellout by the GOP is in today's NYTimes (here), high up in a story on Republican corruption at the highest levels of government in the United States. This is high-stakes corruption of the type one generally associates with Banana Republics, where the political dole is the norm. It is becoming so with Republican elected officials, who in this instance have banded together to form a cartel representing energy against federal regulations and the health, security and future of the citizens of the nation.

Republicans, for the first time, control a majority of offices of attorney general in the states (27 of them) and "individual attorneys general have shut down investigations, changed policies or agreed to more corporate-friendly settlement terms after intervention by lobbyists and lawyers, many of whom are also campaign benefactors," The Times has reported.

Although they have worked together in the past to affect legislation, The Times reports, "never before have attorneys general joined on this scale with corporate interests to challenge Washington and file lawsuits in federal court."

Former Republican AG David Frohnmayer of Oregon puts it into perspective: “When you use a public office, pretty shamelessly, to vouch for a private party with substantial financial interest without the disclosure of the true authorship, that is a dangerous practice. The puppeteer behind the stage is pulling strings, and you can’t see. I don’t like that. And when it is exposed, it makes you feel used.”

Republican legislators have lost all semblance of integrity, and this is yet another example of their blatant attempt to overthrow what little is left of our democracy/republic and replace it with an oligarcy--a government of, by and for the rich.

Energy policy, which affects the environment, the economy, the physical health of the people, the future of a considerable number of the nation's businesses and our overall future as a nation, is crucial. To play politics with it is criminal. To call Republican legislators and elected officials "criminal" these days, though, is redundant.


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