Wednesday, December 19, 2012

EPA's Lisa Jackson Leverages NJ Connections for Princeton Job

The Washington Post is asking if EPA Administrator
Lisa Jackson is heading to Princeton:
We’ve known that Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Lisa Jackson has been planning her exit from the Cabinet, and now we hear she’s exploring that well-worn path from government-officialdom to academia.

Jackson is talking to some university officials, we’re told, and her name is among those being floated as possible candidates for the presidency of Princeton, the institution where she got a graduate engineering degree.
When news of Jackson's use of an EPA email address under the assumed name "Richard Windsor" was reported, an EPA official claimed that she chose that name... well, here's how Politico reported it:
The name came from that of a family dog when Jackson lived in East Windsor Township, N.J., an EPA official said Tuesday.
Again I ask: who the hell names their dog Richard? And why would a once-respected school like Princeton want to be led by that person?

East Windsor, NJ, is conveniently close to Princeton--just 26 minutes away according to Google:

Maybe her dog, "Richard", has an in with Princeton's Board of Trustees and she's leveraging his connection to get back to her old stompin' grounds.

Monday, December 17, 2012

#SCSen: Representative Tim Scott (R-SC) to be Appointed to Replace departing Jim DeMint (R-SC)

The Washington Post reports that conservative Tim Scott will replace Jim DeMint in the US Senate:
South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley (R) will announce Monday that she will appoint Rep. Tim Scott (R-S.C.) to the Senate, according to two sources with knowledge of the pick.
As Wikipedia notes, Tim Scott's rise to Congress in 2010 was propelled by grassroots Tea Party support and a host of endorsements including one from Sarah Palin. Scott will be an excellent replacement for the conservative favorite Jim DeMint.

Congratulations to Nikki Haley and South Carolina for doing their part to Reboot Congress!

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Climate Data Show Alarmist Trend

The draft of the next IPCC report, AR5, is now available online. The graph above is Figure 1.4 from that draft report. It shows the projected upper and lower temperature anomaly bands over time for the four previous reports: FAR, SAR, TAR, and AR4. The black candlestick marks plot the observational data--the ground truth against which all climate models should be judged.

Watts Up With That notes that this caption accompanies the graph above:
Estimated changes in the observed globally and annually averaged surface temperature (in °C) since 1990 compared with the range of projections from the previous IPCC assessments. Values are aligned to match the average observed value at 1990. Observed global annual temperature change, relative to 1961–1990, is shown as black squares (NASA (updated from Hansen et al., 2010; data available at; NOAA (updated from Smith et al., 2008; data available at; and the UK Hadley Centre (Morice et al., 2012; data available at reanalyses). Whiskers indicate the 90% uncertainty range of the Morice et al. (2012) dataset from measurement and sampling, bias and coverage (see Appendix for methods). The coloured shading shows the projected range of global annual mean near surface temperature change from 1990 to 2015 for models used in FAR (Scenario D and business-as-usual), SAR (IS92c/1.5 and IS92e/4.5), TAR (full range of TAR Figure 9.13(b) based on the GFDL_R15_a and DOE PCM parameter settings), and AR4 (A1B and A1T). The 90% uncertainty estimate due to observational uncertainty and internal variability based on the HadCRUT4 temperature data for 1951-1980 is depicted by the grey shading. Moreover, the publication years of the assessment reports and the scenario design are shown.
With the observed temperature anomaly for the past dozen years trending to the lower bound of the IPCC models, why do governments around the world continue to fund the climate scientists who make inaccurate alarmist predictions?

I've posted the full IPCC AR5 draft report to Scribd (h/t: Alec Rawls of

Friday, December 7, 2012

Infamy and the EPA

Christopher Horner of the Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI) and author of the Liberal War on Transparency has uncovered evidence that Lisa Jackson uses an email account under a false name in her role as EPA Administrator. Horner believes that the alternate email address has been used to evade Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests including several that he and CEI have filed with the EPA. EPA maintains that Lisa Jackson's account under the name "Richard Windsor" is part of a policy dating back to Clinton's EPA Administrator Carol Browner.

That's interesting because there was a Florida environmental lawyer named Richard Windsor who worked for Carol Browner when she was Secretary of Environmental Regulation for Florida. Sadly, that Richard Windsor died four years ago today.

Christopher Horner filed a FOIA appeal (embedded below) today to reverse the EPA's initial decision to deny his November 12th, 2012, request for emails sent to/from Lisa Jackson's "Richard Windsor" email account. EPA objected to Horner's FOIA request on the grounds that it did not sufficiently specify the records he sought. As Horner points out in the letter:
The stated search parameters in this standard format would be, as follows:
  1. Copies of all emails sent to, from or copied to any email address used by EPA’s Office of administrator (OA);
  2. Filtered on: (Time Message Sent Later Than 12/15/2008 12:00:01 AM
    and Time Message Sent Earlier Than 12/10/2012 11:59:59 PM;
  3. and (Display “To:” Contains “Richard Windsor”
    or Display “From:” Contains “Richard Windsor”
    or Display “CC:” Contains “Richard Windsor”
    or Display “Bcc:” Contains “Richard Windsor”
The ease with which this is done, contrasted with EPA’s unsupported claim that a search is not possible, suggests that EPA’s initial determination is no more than a delaying tactic for a request which it found particularly unwelcome.
That and the other examples Horner provides strongly suggest that EPA is stonewalling. What do they have to hide?

CEI Appeal EPA Richard Windsor FOIA

Unemploymnet Down to 7.7% on 540k Fewer People in the Labor Force

ZeroHedge nails it on today's job numbers:
Confused why the unemployment rate dropped? The same, favorite BLS adjustment - a drop in the labor force participation rate which declined by 0.2% to 63.6% once again, as the number of people out of the labor increased by over 540K to 88,883,000.
The Employment Situation Report (link will break in a month) dismisses the impact of Hurricane Sandy on the jobs numbers:
Our analysis suggests that Hurricane Sandy did not substantively impact the national employment and unemployment estimates for November.
While the falling unemployment rate of 7.7% and the addition of 146k NFP which beat estimates is great news, the big question is: what happened to the half million people that left the work force?

Thursday, December 6, 2012

#SCSen: Senator DeMint to Head Heritage Foundation

The Hill reports that Senator Jim DeMint (R-SC) will resign effective this coming January:
Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.), a leading Senate conservative and founding member of the Senate Tea Party Caucus, will resign from office in January to become president of The Heritage Foundation.
DeMint will replace Ed Feulner, who will become “chancellor” of the organization.  The Wall Street Journal notes:
Sen. DeMint's departure means that South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley, a Republican, will name a successor, who will have to run in a special election in 2014. In that year, both Mr. DeMint's replacement and Sen. Lindsey Graham will be running for reelection in South Carolina.
Put on the popcorn. The 2014 South Carolina Senate races are now the biggest show in the country.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

#MO8: Jumpin' Jo Ann Emerson was in Job Talks Days after Re-election

The Sunlight Foundation's Reporting Group has found that Jo Ann Emerson was in formal talks with electric co-op days after her re-election:
On Nov. 19, nine business days after she won reelection with 72 percent of the vote, Rep. Jo Ann Emerson, R-Mo., began final negotiations for a new job with the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association, official documents show.

According to ethics rules set in place meant to avoid conflict of interest, Members of Congress are required to file disclosures with the House Ethics Committee and the Senate Office of Public Records within three business days after they begin to negotiate for a future job while they are still in Congress. However, the definition of "negotiation" is left ambiguous and leaves room for "preliminary or exploratory" talks before any report is required. Reports are filed on paper at the ethics committees offices and, while available to the public, are not posted online.

While the stamp date on the document shows that disclosure was filed on Nov. 16, Emerson appears to have signed the document on Nov. 23. The Reporting Group contacted her office and the ethics committee for a clarification and will update this post if more information is provided.
The Sunlight Foundation has obtained copies of documents Emerson filed with the House Ethics Committee as well as similar documents related to other members who are seeking employment outside of Congress. Those documents are available on Scribd:
Negotiation Docs

Bob Parker Announces Bid for MO-08

Following on the surprise resignation of Jo Ann Emerson (R-MO), her primary challenger in 2010 and 2012 has announced his intention to seek the seat she's vacating. Emerson has held the seat in rural southeast Missouri since 1996.

Parker made his announcement on his Facebook page (screenshot at right) at 6PM Tuesday evening.

Candidates for the 2013 special election will be selected by the committeemen and women of each party. Other candidates are considering the race, so this could turn into a free for all as each scrambles to secure the support of committeemen and women across the district. The Republican committee members for the 8th Congressional District are listed on the Missouri GOP website.

Jo Ann Emerson to Retire

The Washington Post reports that Rep. Jo Ann Emerson (R-MO) will resign from the House of Representatives:
Rep. Jo Ann Emerson (R-Mo.) will resign from Congress next February to become President and Chief Executive Officer of the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association, she announced on Monday.
The National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA) is based in Arlington, VA. Here's how NRECA is described on the group's "About" page:
NRECA is the national service organization for more than 900 not-for-profit rural electric cooperatives and public power districts providing retail electric service to more than 42 million consumers in 47 states and whose retail sales account for approximately 12 percent of total electricity sales in the United States.
Emerson's departure from Congress will result in a special election in Missouri's 8th Congressional District which covers the southeast corner of the state. Because of the compressed election cycle of a special election, there will be no primary contest as the Southeast Missouri Times reported:
Her replacement will be selected by the Republican and Democrat 8th district committees with their nominees to face off in a special election sometime in 2013.
Presumably potential candidates have already begun lobbying the committeemen and women of Missouri's 8th CD. One potential conservative candidate in the 8th is State Senator Jason Crowell (R-MO). Crowell released a statement on Tuesday indicating that he was surprised with Emerson's departure and that he's considering a run:
At this time I have no idea about my future plans, but I am humbled and honored by the confidence so many have shown me.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

America: A Grim Diagnosis

The Wall Street Journal has a must read interview with Harvard's Harvey Mansfield. Professor Mansfield discusses The Crisis of American Self-Government:
Few have thought as hard, or as much, about how democracies can preserve individual liberty and national virtue as the eminent political scientist Harvey Mansfield. When it comes to assessing the state of the American experiment in self-government today, his diagnosis is grim, and he has never been one to mince words.
Further on:
the electorate that granted Barack Obama a second term was unwise—the president achieved "a sneaky victory," Mr. Mansfield says. "The Democrats said nothing about their plans for the future. All they did was attack the other side. Obama's campaign consisted entirely of saying 'I'm on your side' to the American people, to those in the middle. No matter what comes next, this silence about the future is ominous."
Read the whole thing.