Sunday, April 29, 2012

Great News: American Lung Association Helping the EPA Crucify Energy Companies With Your Money

Just when you thought all of the corrupt uses of Stimulus money had been exposed -- from Solyndra to Tesla Motors -- comes word that even ostensibly independent organizations like the American Lung Association are suspect. It's called greed, drones. Google it.

Let's start with an article from last week's Houston Business Journal headlined "Houston listed as one of worst cities for smog":

Houston was listed as the No. 8 worst city for smog according to a new report for the American Lung Association... the association’s State of the Air 2012 report ranked the worst U.S. cities for ozone pollution, or smog.

The report found that an estimated 127,325 children suffer from pediatric asthma and 322,605 adults suffer from asthma in Houston.

...Texas is currently in a legal battle with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency concerning air pollution rules. Most recently, Texas and 14 other states challenged the legality of the EPA’s Cross-State Air Pollution Rule, which imposes caps on nitrogen oxide and sulfur dioxide from coal-fired power plants in eastern states and creates a 27-state trading program.

So the ALA says that more than 450,000 people in Houston suffer from asthma. And this is precisely the kind of report that is routinely used by the EPA to "crucify" (their words, not mine) energy companies.

Now, does the ALA have clean hands when it comes to the EPA? That would be a big negatory, because you and I -- America's taxpayers -- are helping fund the ALA to produce this propaganda.

Last week, we learned that millions of dollars from President Obama’s “stimulus” bill were actually used by the government to lobby itself in favor of higher taxes. Specifically, grants to state obesity prevention programs were raided for cash to lobby local governments in favor of sin taxes on love-handle products, such as sugar and soda.

...Contrary to dismissive statements made by Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, this is against the law. Sebelius asserted that it’s only illegal when federal grant money is used to lobby the federal government, but in fact, it is illegal for such funds “to be used directly or indirectly to pay for any personal service, advertisement, telegram, telephone, letter, printed or written matter, or other device, intended or designed to influence in any manner… [a] jurisdiction, or an official of any government, to favor, adopt, or oppose, by vote or otherwise, any legislation, law ratification, policy, or appropriation.”

...[For instance, t]he American Lung Association of Idaho/Nevada, Inc., received $1.4 million from a [Stimulus-funded] grant to the Southern Nevada Health District, and happily praised this “exciting initiative” for allowing them to “take on advocacy and policy work,” including “strengthening the Nevada Clean Indoor Act and a tobacco tax increase.”

That's just an example.

The ALA went so far as to lobby the 111th Congress for the Stimulus package (PDF).

And Texas, of course, is one of the states in the crosshairs of the EPA's Crucifixion Strategy.

Texas will take aim in a federal appeals court Friday at a controversial rule that requires aging power plants to sharply reduce emissions that cause smog and soot in neighboring states.

The latest round in the state's fight with the Environmental Protection Agency will be heard by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, often considered the nation's most influential after the Supreme Court.

In the case, industry groups and 14 states, led by Texas, are challenging the legality of the Cross-State Air Pollution Rule, which imposes caps on nitrogen oxide and sulfur dioxide from coal-fired power plants in eastern states. Texas, for one, fears some utilities will shutter plants to comply with the rule, threatening the state's ability to "keep the lights on."

The EPA says the rule is necessary to reduce lung-damaging pollution that causes thousands of premature deaths and respiratory illnesses each year around the power plants and in downwind states.

And that's the kind of data offered up by the ALA, presumably only after taxpayers are forced to contribute to its efforts. In other words, the EPA has recruited the ALA -- with your money -- to "validate" the Eco-Marxist agenda of de-industrializing America.

Is the ALA a worthy charity? Perhaps, but its alliance with the Eco-Marxists -- and its reliance on "Stimulus" grants -- makes its reports utterly suspect. In fact, the ALA's reports -- seeing as they are involuntarily funded by the taxpayers -- must be disregarded.

It's called a "conflict of interest", liberals. Google it.

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