Last week, Standard & Poor's warned that the U.S. government's credit rating could be at risk. Which makes sense, right, since this must be the biggest debt emergency in the history of all biggestness? Not so fast: with regards to U.S. debt as a percentage of GDP, an index right-wingers have been slinging around a lot lately, we've been through considerably worse as a nation. Also, Standard & Poor's is the very same outfit that overrated junk securities in the run-up to our economic armageddon in 2008, and gave Lehman's and Bear Stearns and even Enron its highest rating right up until they collapsed. So Standard & Poor's must be, at least at times, spectacularly incompetent, right? I think it's even worse than that -- the warning came just a few days after the House voted to destroy Medicare, which the elites want and the people don't, and which side do you think Standard & Poor's is on? Anyway, Roots Action helps you tell your Congressfolk not to let Standard & Poor's intimidate them into enacting stupid spending cuts. (If that's not direct enough for you, then CREDO helps you tell Senator Durbin (D-IL) not to use Social Security as a bargaining chip, and Care2 helps you tell Congress not to cut Medicare.)
Meanwhile, as often happens with Obama Administration environmental policy, one hand giveth and the other hand taketh away: hot on the heels of a fairly strong EPA proposal in re mercury and arsenic comes a fairly weak proposal from the Forest Service which doesn't adequately protect drinking water within the national forest system, doesn't adequately protect wildlife within the system, and doesn't offer guidance on how to manage and remove logging roads within the system. If this doesn't seem like that big a deal, consider that a lot of Americans camp, hike, fish, and hunt in our national forests, and consider also that America's national forests help provide almost 125 million Americans, or over 40% of the population, with drinking water. So Earthjustice helps you tell the Forest Service to issue stronger regulations that actually protect our forests.
Speaking of unspoiled areas, British Petroleum, architects of the spillageddon in the Gulf a little over a year ago, spent $2 million just in the first quarter of 2011 on lobbying their Congressfolk for more offshore drilling and smaller spill liabilities, which is around $2 million more than I spent and I think I gave considerably better advice. Think maybe that $2 million could have been spent, you know, hiring people? To do work? Work like, you know, making sure BP doesn't take a dump all over the planet again? And anyone think BP's lobbying might have had something to do with the President's Oil Spill Commission recommendations getting precisely nowhere in Congress? In addition to all that, BP will get a $13 billion tax break this year -- this, after so many federal, state, and local agencies spent so much money to clean up the mess they made! So CREDO helps you tell BP to pay its fair share of taxes.