Meet the New Boss

Corporate Terror

Would a person who — as a result of his or her blind adherence to an ideology — sets off an explosion that registers as the equivalent of a 2.1 earthquake, killing at least 15 people, injuring more than 200 people, and incinerating more than 50 homes and businesses, be considered a terrorist?

GoneIf corporations are people, my friend, then why are we not terrified by the thought of a lightly-regulated individual (biz-ness) that is focused on the ideology of maximizing profits actually handling dangerous chemicals?

Records kept by the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration show that the last time the agency inspected the plant was 28 years ago. In that inspection, dated Feb. 13, 1985, the agency found five “serious” violations, including ones involving improper storage and handling of anhydrous ammonia and improper respiratory protection for workers. The agency imposed a $30 penalty on the company.

Last June, the company was fined $5,250 by the federal Department of Transportation’s Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration for violations involving anhydrous ammonia. An investigator reported the violations following an inspection of the plant in September 2011, and the agency later determined that the company had corrected the violations.

Something to ponder on 4/20 — no not for that 4/20 reason — I mean the 3rd anniversary of the Deepwater Horizon explosion that killed 11 people and fucked up the Gulf of Mexico, resulting in the largest environmental disaster in American history.

[NYT: Plant Explosion Tears at the Heart of a Texas Town]
[Austin American-Statesman: Death Toll in West Rises to 14]

Pope Pope Fizz Fizz

Vatican Ragamuffin.

The Holy Seagull has deposited a white-burning turd, signaling to the world that the College of Cardinals are already sick of each other. Stay tuned for an announcement!

One Year Ago …

iGestapo

The news came out earlier this week that in July an iPhone 5 prototype was allegedly “lost” at a San Francisco tequila bar in the Mission District.  While the more cynical among us may have figured the story was a publicity stunt pulled by Apple, the story has now taken a rather disturbing turn.

SF Weekly, one of the alternative weekly papers here, broke the news yesterday that indicates Steve Jobs may have left at a good time, because the company has stepped in to a big pile of dog shit, and has pulled the San Francisco Police Department into the poo.

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Steve King: Republican of Iowa, Oracle of Truth…

“The Leader and the Speaker have established their integrity and their mendacity for years in this Congress, and I don’t believe it can be effectively challenged.” [TPM]

Republicans Waste No Time Driving Congress Off the Rails

So, now that we’re set to embark upon The Most Constitutional Congress in Six Thousand Years of World History, what’s the first thing that happens?

House Rules Chairman David Dreier (R-Calif.) abruptly adjourned a hearing on a GOP health care repeal bill Thursday after he became aware that Rep. Pete Sessions was not sworn in as a Member of the 112th Congress, committee spokeswoman Jo Maney said.

No, the Chief Justice wasn’t at the scene of the crime — Pete wasn’t in the room when everybody sweared fealty to teabaggers yesterday.

But wait, it gets better: Civilian Pete “offered the motion to constitute the Rules Committee,” which was duly passed, and is now duly canceled. And with no Rules Committee, there’s no Obamacare Repeal bill. Oh, there aren’t any House rules, either.

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Or You Could Donate to NAMBLA in His Name…

You don’t know him, but Don Unsworth is dead: “In lieu of flowers the family respectfully asks that donations be sent to the American Cancer Society, or to the campaign of anybody who is running against President Barack Obama in 2012.” [WIS-TV]