Around the Block with Frank; February 23, 2015 Edition

Frank's cornerOn the Environment  Part 1

Biggest gaps between views of scientists and those of general public come on topics of animal research, GMO foods [Pew/AAAS]

On the Inevitability of Hillary Clinton’s Run

Ana Marie Cox: “An ‘air of inevitability’ should be a good thing, right? It’s in the superhero toolbox, right next to the cloak of invisibility and hammer of invincibility. So why do journalists treat it like kryptonite?”

On the Environment  Part 2

New study challenges prevailing assumptions: controlling for such factors as poverty and race, “no differences [found] in asthma risk between children living in urban areas and their suburban and rural counterparts” [Science Daily; Knappenberger and Michaels, Cato]

On the Inevitability of Hillary Clinton’s Run Part 2

Washington Post: “As she readies her second presidential campaign, Clinton has recruited consumer marketing specialists onto her team of trusted political advisers. Their job is to help imagine Hillary 5.0 — the rebranding of a first lady turned senator turned failed presidential candidate turned secretary of state turned likely 2016 Democratic presidential nominee.”

“Clinton and her image-makers are sketching ways to refresh the well-established brand for tomorrow’s marketplace. In their mission to present voters with a winning picture of the likely candidate, no detail is too big or too small — from her economic opportunity agenda to the design of the ‘H’ in her future campaign logo.”

On the Environment  Part 3

Interview with NYU’s urbanist Alain Bertaud, formerly of the World Bank [Market Urbanism]

So We Might As Well Dissect Jeb Bush Too….

The Washington Post looks at Columba Bush’s fondness for shopping.

“Jeb Bush’s political team insisted that her tastes and shopping habits should not be an issue…That kind of spending, though well within his means, may present a challenge for Jeb Bush as he prepares for a presidential run with a message that the playing field between rich and poor is not fair or level.”

“While spouses are not on the ballot, they too find their lifestyles the focus of curiosity — and, frequently, partisan attack. Americans view a candidate’s family as an indicator of how closely connected he or she is to average people.”

See how petty we have become…..

On the Environment  Part 4

Little free libraries on the wrong side of zoning law [Conor Friedersdorf, Sarah Skwire/Freeman, L.A. Times]

Big Week Coming; Will Capitol Hill GOP Leaders Deliver?

This week Capitol Hill Republicans face two showdowns with President Obama and the Democrats that will either make or break their standing with grassroots limited government constitutional conservative voters – defunding Obama’s unconstitutional executive amnesty and the confirmation vote on Attorney General nominee Loretta Lynch. It is hard to decide which is the most important, and in some sense they are inextricably linked. The Attorney General is one of the most important Cabinet offices, presiding as it does over everything from voting rights, to civil rights to immigration “judges,” and with Eric Holder in charge it has been the leading…

On the Environment  Part 5

“Who knew following the trail of ‘clean energy’ money could make you feel so dirty?” [Oregonian editorial on scandal that led to resignation of Gov. John Kitzhaber, more, Watchdog] Actually, the correct answer is “plenty of us”: green-barrel projects rife with cronyism in other states too [Mark Newgent, Red Maryland; Michael Dresser, Baltimore Sun]

Establishment GOP Attacks Rand Paul’s Anti-Fed Rhetoric

Calling Sen. Rand Paul’s rhetoric regarding the Federal Reserve “dangerous and irresponsible,” via Politico, the Wall Street-backed establishment GOP is pushing back on what’s become a Paul talking point, just as it was for his father, Rep. Ron Paul. Paul could face a significant challenge if he emerges from Iowa with a legitimate shot at the Republican nomination. Because experts say he gets many of his arguments about the Fed flat wrong. And the establishment wing of the GOP — backed by piles of Wall Street money — views Paul’s approach to the Fed as dangerous and irresponsible.

“He seems to have a poor understanding of what’s actually on the Fed balance sheet and how the bank operates,” said James Pethokoukis, a scholar at the conservative American Enterprise Institute. “And if you don’t have a firm grip on one of your signature issues, people eventually are going to doubt other things you have to say.”

On the Environment  Part 6

“EPA’s Wood-Burning Stove Ban Has Chilling Consequences For Many Rural People” [Larry Bell, Forbes]

On the Environment  Part 7

“The digital poker magnate who financed an epic pollution lawsuit against Chevron has disavowed the case and accused the lead plaintiffs’ lawyer of misleading him about the underlying facts.” [Paul Barrett, Roger Parloff]

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