Sunday, March 10, 2013

Kurt Schaefer's legacy

From the Heartland, Margot McMillen writes: In the last week, Columbia’s representative Kurt Schaefer has met with several constituents from his district. Folks from the environmental community, health community, rural life and faith communities have all had the same experience: Kurt has been well, curt. Meaning abrupt, brisk, brusque, rude. Some folks have called him “belligerent” and “confrontational.” One friends told me, “I’m so glad you weren’t there, Margot.” Although I’ve been in lawmaker offices where the rep or sen was out-of-control, the descriptions I’m hearing, and not just about Kurt, are truly appalling. It indicates the level of pressure these guys are under. The pressure between what they’ve promised their funders, like the Farm Bureau, Monsanto, Cargill and other corporations and their own personal own moral codes about what is right for the future. After all, these lawmakers have families and friends who will be affected forever. When these political gangs dismantle environmental regulations and allow more pollution to affect our burdened waterways and air, their families will pay with increased amounts of water-borne diseases, asthma, and other unpleasantness. If they disallow the health initiatives like Medicaid that would create a healthier future for our children, their families will pay with higher costs, more health problems and mental health problems. We will soon see, because of past policies, epidemics that no one can cure. And these guys know how to fix the problems by building policies to take us into the future. They know that they’re standing in the way of solutions. They know that their corporate funders are putting dirty money into campaigns by manipulating tax codes. They know that if government puts resources into creating energy-saving devices and alternative energy sources, they can build a safe future and turn back some of the problems we’re seeing. It is sad to see lawmakers under so much stress. That’s all for today. Happy Daylight Savings!!

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