Open thread for night owls: Gov’t shutdown didn’t stop Trump regime from processing drilling permits

E. A. Crunden at Think Progress writes—Trump administration accepted 260 oil and gas drilling applications during shutdown:

New data analysis shows that the government accepted 260 oil and gas drilling permit applications during the partial government shutdown last month, even as federal agencies suffered severe staffing shortages at all levels.

Those findings shed more light on the extent to which the Interior Department (DOI)  favored the oil and gas industry over public lands protection during the longest government shutdown in history — a decision House Democrats now plan to probe.

The research published by the Colorado-based nonpartisan nonprofit Center for Western Priorities (CWP) was based on data published on government databases. The analysis found that of the 260 applications for drilling permits accepted during the shutdown across the country, 40 permits were approved by the shutdown’s end, along with 15 oil and gas leases. An additional 162 nominations of public lands parcels were accepted with the intent of leasing for oil and gas development.

These findings come at the same time as reporting by local New Mexico news outlet, Carlsbad Current Argus, which found the Bureau of Land Management (BLM)’s Carlsbad Field Office processed around 80 applications to drill on public lands between Dec. 22, 2018 and Jan. 25, 2019, when the shutdown ended.

In fact, drilling applications never ceased during the more than four weeks when the government remained partially closed according to the oil and gas shutdown trackermaintained by CWP. Meanwhile around 800,000 federal employees were furloughed or working without pay during the shutdown across agencies.

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QUOTATION

“The history of men’s opposition to women’s emancipation is more interesting perhaps than the story of that emancipation itself.” 
         ~~Virginia Woolf, A Room of One’s Own  (1929)   

       TWEET OF THE DAY

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For those of you who loath doing expense reports…how about doing one for your trip to the Moon!? 🚀ðŸ˜Â🌛 A whopping $33.31! pic.twitter.com/Eu1u6WUNEl

— Buzz Aldrin (@TheRealBuzz) February 19, 2019

BLAST FROM THE PAST

On this date at Daily Kos in 2009—Troop Surge in Afghanistan Means No Progressive Consensus:

President Barack Obama’s Tuesday announcement that the U.S. will be adding 17,000 fresh troops to those already fighting in Afghanistan upended hopes among some progressives that the 60-day policy review he announced February 10 would be completed before any such surge. As has been becoming publicly clear for a while now, progressives themselves are split on the issue.

A few have complained that those who are objecting to Obama’s course should have spoken up during his election campaign. This, delivered with a straight face in spite of the fact that there was broad progressive consensus that getting into a fight over Afghanistan would not help Obama’s chances against McCain. So progressives who opposed a troop escalation in Afghanistan kept mostly silent. Back then, their perspective was simply that there would be time after November 4 to persuade Obama that expanding the U.S. military presence was a bad idea. But since they shut up then in the interests of the greater good, they are told they should shut up now because they didn’t speak up then. Catch-22, subsection 3.

What was a campaign is now an administration. And while diplomacy and rebuilding efforts will surely be getting more attention, there is now every possibility that U.S. troop strength in Afghanistan will double, bringing the total NATO and American armed forces in that country close to 100,000. The NATO contingents are iffy in the long run, but the hints from generals like Petraeus, Odierno and McKiernan indicate that Americans could remain there for five years or more. In the view of some, including progressives, why not? After all, the U.S. still has tens of thousands of troops in Germany and Japan, and look how that turned out. Others see: quagmire.

The split among progressives became pronounced today in the form of a letter soon to be sent by the Get Afghanistan Right coalition to the President, his most powerful Cabinet members and the chief of the Afghanistan policy review team, ex-CIA employee Bruce Riedel. The letter, which argues that it is misguided to escalate U.S. military presence in Afghanistan, comes in response to efforts by the National Security Network to present a progressive consensus statement on the situation.

LINK TO DAILY KOS STORE

On today’s Kagro in the Morning show: Sanders in, pie fights on. McConnell, Chao & a hmm emoji. Stone gets into yet more trouble. Trump judges’ bizarre problems with Brown. Gaslighting separated families. The hedge fund that loves to hate newspapers. Surprised by Trump’s tax flop? How?

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Andrew McCabe: Decision To Investigate Trump As A Russian Agent Was Based On Public Information, Not Secret Intel

By Chuck Ross

Former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe acknowledged Tuesday night that the FBI’s decision to open a counterintelligence investigation against President Trump is based on information that is already publicly known rather than previously undisclosed information tying the Republican to Russia. “Are there other things that haven’t been made public at …

Andrew McCabe: Decision To Investigate Trump As A Russian Agent Was Based On Public Information, Not Secret Intel is original content from Conservative Daily News – Where Americans go for news, current events and commentary they can trust – Conservative News Website for U.S. News, Political Cartoons and more.

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