Aug 04 2010

Texas declares War on the EPA

Published by at 6:13 pm under All General Discussions

And that is no overstatement  – I *strongly* recommend you go to this link and read this official response from Bryan Shaw, head of the TCEQ  (the State regulatory body) and Greg Abbott, the Texas Attorney General, to Lisa Jackson and the EPA.

I have *never* read an official government document that is this bitter and contemptuous of the Federal level – I never thought I would!   This is damn close to a new Declaration of Independance.

I’ll reprint a few excerpts, because William Travis himself would be proud of these words:

“In order to deter challenges to your plan for centralized control of industrial development through the issuance of permits for greenhouse gases, you have called upon each state to declare its allegiance to the Environmental Protection Agency’s recently enacted greenhouse gas regulations — regulations that are plainly contrary to United States law.”

“On behalf of the state of Texas, we write to inform you that Texas has neither the authority nor the intention of interpreting, ignoring, or amending its laws in order to compel the permitting of greenhouse gas emissions.

The letter contains a number of very well reasoned legal points detailing why the EPA’s order to Texas is in violation of current law, including:

Instead of acknowledging that congressionally set emission limits preclude the regulation of greenhouse gases, you instead re-write those statutorily-established limits.”

 But they save their best shots for the end:

Each of these objections to EPA’s demand for a Loyalty Oath from the State of Texas would suffice to justify our refusal to make one.  Indeed, it is an affront to congressionally-established judicial review process for EPA to force states to pledge allegiance to its rules (or forfeit their right to permit) on the final day by which states must exercise their statutory right to challenge those same rules.  Texas will not facilitate EPA’s apparent attempt to thwart these established procedures and ignore the law….   Those objections will now be resolved in litigation now pending in the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals. 

William Yeatman has a good, brief rundown of the environmental law at issue here and what the EPA is trying to do here:

In a nutshell, the administration wants to pick and choose which sections of the Clean Air Act apply to greenhouse gases, but that’s not how the legislation works. In fact, the Clean Air Act is written such that one provision tripwires another, which tripwires another, and so on and so forth, until the whole Act applies. When the Congress created this of belt-and-suspenders approach to regulation, in the 1970s, it was trying to limit particulate pollution that causes smog. Greenhouse gases, however, are emitted in much greater quantities than particulate pollution. As a result, the Clean Air Act, if applied literally to greenhouse gases, would result in the regulation of every mansion, apartment building, and office complex.That is, it would be a regulatory nightmare. To avoid having to regulate the entire economy, the EPA wants to rewrite the Clean Air Act. Of course, this is legally dubious–the executive is not allowed to play the roll of the legislature.

This administration has been using the EPA as a threat to try and scare the Senate into voting for job killing climate legislation; however, that effort has now failed and they are left with trying to use the EPA to make good on their threats.   This is the opening salvo in that war.   I believe the dems have vastly overestimated the ability of the EPA to achieve their ends, because the biggest problem is that *everything* the EPA does is going to reduce manufacturing jobs in the affected areas! Imagine how it will play for the Feds to be actively killing jobs while unemployment is still near 10%!!!

The new Congress is not going to be nearly as sympathetic to Ms. Jackson’s efforts as this one has been, and they will have  a very effective tool – they don’t need to pass anything that could get vetoed, they just need to slash funding for the EPA by 75% and see how long it takes to get their attention. A Republican house may not be strong enough to dictate specific policy changes, but in a deficit obsessed, budget cutting world they can play hell with the EPA’s day to day operations.

I think we’re about to see a 2 year long civil war in which various parts of the government do everything they can to sabotage and undermine other parts, depending on who controls the respective power centers.   Some would say that’s been going on for some time already, but those have just been skirmishes – this conflict is about to break wide open.    Lord help us all, we’re in for one hell of a mess.

37 responses so far

37 Responses to “Texas declares War on the EPA”

  1. […] courts are on one front, the executive branch is on another. WWS describes how Texas declares War on the EPA. official response from Bryan Shaw, head of the TCEQ (the State regulatory body) and Greg Abbott, […]

  2. tarpon says:

    The Sovereign States need take the lead … limit and restrict the commerce clause.

    The EPA banned DDT on a whim, and African children have paid dearly for this, about 1.5 million each year fall to malaria for this stupidity. In 2006 WHO finally relented and allowed DDT use indoors, not anywhere near enough.

    It’s high time Americans stood tall, question with boldness, fend for what they believe, American values, principles, it’s for damn sure the liberal media won’t lift a hand.

    Did the Supreme Court energize America’s people by recovering the Second Amendment from near extinction by the progressives, and restoring it’s place amongst our most cherished rights? As Jefferson once said: “A strong body makes the mind strong. As to the species of exercise, I advise the gun. While this gives moderate exercise to the body, it gives boldness, enterprise and independence to the mind. Games played with the ball and others of that nature are too violent for the body and stamp no character on the mind. Let your gun therefore be the constant companion of your walks.” —- Thomas Jefferson’s advice to his 15 year-old nephew Peter Carr 1785

    Restore boldness, enterprise and independence to the mind, what we need more than anything else today — to stand before tyranny and stare it down.

  3. Whippet1 says:

    “I think we’re about to see a 2 year long civil war in which various parts of the government do everything they can to sabotage and undermine other parts, depending on who controls the respective power centers. Some would say that’s been going on for some time already, but those have just been skirmishes – this conflict is about to break wide open. Lord help us all, we’re in for one hell of a mess.”

    That’s what good Marxists do. They aren’t about achieving the grand Utopia, that’s a ruse. They are about power; winning it, stealing it, killing for it. Whatever it takes to achieve it. The only Utopia that exists for Marxists occurs when they have obtained absolute power over all and everyone else lives in hell.

  4. dhunter says:

    The states must stand up to the Feds or we will cease being a free nation and instead become a nation of subjects ruled by a progressive class determined to spread the wealth making us all poor and beholding to our governing masters.
    We are well on our way to subjugation at the hands the regime of Barrack Hussein Obama, his Democrat majorities, a sympathetic press and a Judicial system that has become an arm of the Federal Government.

    Tom Woods points out the states must nullify!

    If enough states do so the judiciary will fall in line or the revolution will began and the blood will be on their hands!

  5. owl says:

    I just thank God I’m a Texan. I said all along that if Katrina had happened in Texas, we would have taken horse teams and pulled those people out quicker. Sure would not have sat 50 miles away with enough school buses to have taken out 3 times the number.

    I cheer what they are doing. We have to kill PC before they kill us with it. Sarah and Breitbart understands it. Texas gets it.

    When you can’t utter a candidate’s middle name while he is running…………when you are accused by a ‘racist by name organization’ and we are all suppose to keep quiet while being called racists? I don’t think so.

    We needed those elected voices to be Voices and stop that crap. They refused and this is what resulted. Breitbart understands the power the Dems media has inflicted upon us.

    Right now, somebody running the ads needs to take all those cute, funny clips they are running of Obama saying things like ‘when I got here I found we were xxxxxdollars in the hole’ and put a little voice beside him saying ‘and you decided to make that xxxxxxdollars in 18 months’. Good job. Or how about the funny of ‘you can’t drive so you don’t get the keys’. There are zillions of them out there that the GOP needs to take a lesson from Sarah. Or put a group of our elected Voices doing it. Give it back. Just because we know better does not mean that brainwashing does not work.

  6. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Free To Prosper, AJ Strata. AJ Strata said: new: Texas declares War on the EPA […]

  7. Whippet1 says:

    God Bless Texas. I’m a Wisconsin transplant in Texas for 25 years now and I wouldn’t have it any other way!

  8. Mjdzfun says:

    I should like to see the last paragraph read:

    “So, ya’ll just come get us. We’ll be waiting at the Alamo.



  9. crosspatch says:

    My greatest fear is that November will not arrive soon enough.

  10. crosspatch says:

    Actually, I can’t for the life of me understand the Democrats’ strategy. They are taking measures that are increasingly alienating them from many of their own party’s voters. The defeat they face this November is potentially epic.

    When you have 60 to 70 percent of the voters opposed to their actions, yet they continue to press their agenda without paying the slightest attention to what is happening, one has to wonder what is really going on.

    Do they believe that they will lose in the mid terms but then swing to center like Clinton did, and people will just forget about it, and vote them back into office in 2012?

    I have been politically aware since the 1970’s. I watched the Watergate hearings. I have NEVER seen the people so upset at our ruling party as I see them now. It is far too late for the Democrats to make any changes in their behavior for the elections this November. The people are so upset that we might be looking at the end of “progressive” liberalism for decades. Now, I realize that people were saying the same thing about the Republican party only a couple of years ago but this is different.

    Democrats won many districts by small margins in both 2006 and 2008. Obama won by no larger majority than Bush did against Kerry. A lot has happened since 2008. People feel that we have a government that is absolutely disconnected with the people in both domestic and foreign policy.

    I live in the San Francisco Bay area and I am hearing things I have *never* heard. I am hearing talk about people voting straight Republican tickets for the first time in their lives. I am hearing talk of kicking Democrats out of office at every level of government all the way down to dog catcher.

    People feel betrayed by the party that made irresponsible promises with the people’s money and show no remorse. They treat our money as if it is theirs to allocate to others. They talk down to the people.

    From every indication I can find, and I do read the comments in my local papers’ websites, people are extremely angry at the Democrats. It isn’t specific politicians they are angry with, they are angry with the entire party’s focus, direction, philosophy. I have heard people at work that they don’t like the Republicans but see the Republicans as less dangerous to their jobs, homes, and lives than the Democrats.

  11. WWS says:

    “Actually, I can’t for the life of me understand the Democrats’ strategy.”

    It’s not that it’s hard to understand, it’s just that it’s so far removed from what we call rational thought that we we don’t want to accept what we see.

    It’s the same strategy that was followed by Jim Jones in Guyana, for much the same reasons. And I’m not joking.

    Unless they’re stopped soon, they’ll burn this country to the ground just to take revenge on the populace for failing to appreciate their moral superiority and their genius.

  12. Alert1201 says:

    Texans showing their cojones.

  13. WWS,

    Irrational regimes get more so under pressure.

    The issue for Obama and his Leftist sycophants is that we have an elective Federal government structure that has alternate elected and appointed power centers whose vital interests are at stake with his regime’s irrational behavior.

    And they are going to fight.

    The Obama Administration is going to use Federal rule making and auditing powers to try and dictate his Leftist centralized state to America past the Congress.

    And as AJ Strata pointed out in his post, he is going to get huge push back from Red States and the soon to be Republican majority Congress.

    The ground level federal bureaucracy is going to run for the hills in 2012 as the 2011 Republican budget cuts hit the Federal regulatory state and Leftist funding centers in the Federal government like a meteor.

    More importantly, corporate campaign money was declared free speech by the courts. It will enter the election arena in 2010 and especially 2012 in huge amounts.

    The Democrats are going to face a Tsunami of business political advocacy cash added to that coming from the Conservative American Christian sects and the Catholic church looking to create a Federal Marriage Amendment to the Constitution, thanks to Federal District Judge Walker.

    Obama is going to react like the Chicago politician he is.

    He is going to use the bureaucracies and Leftist Federal judges he still retains effective control of to punish his enemies and will send out thugs to threaten opponents with to much economic power and lawyers for the bureaucracy or courts to intimidate.

    The problem Obama has is America is not Chicago.

    Texans, for one, don’t intimidate. They fight.

    That is when SEIU and ACORN thugs start beating up the families of Obama political opponents with zero coverage from the MSM and wall to wall coverage by the alternate internet/talk radio media.

    Shortly after that the political killing will begin…and there won’t be anyone both sides trusts to turn it off.

    Think through the implications here.

    Obama’s control of Federal law enforcement and regulatory powers kills the Right’s trust in the Federal Executive.

    And a Sarah Palin Presidency will mean the Left will be worse about that.

    Pelosi and Reid passing National Health Care followed by Republican majorities defunding National Health Care, other Leftist funding steams and the EPA means no one will trust Congress as an Institution.

    Judge Walker out in California and the 5th Circuit Federal judge who shut down the interior department oil drilling moratorium made sure no one will trust the appointed Federal court judges.

    All that is left at the Federal level that the American people trust _as an institution_ is the American Military, and that spells a general on a white horse…after 10 years of the American military experience practicing population control on Iraq and Afghanistan.

    It is time for everyone to read histories of the Late Roman Republic and the 1930’s Spanish Civil War.

  14. WWS says:

    Excellent points, Trent, especially when you detail how Trust is being systematically destryed in every American institution. I’ll add, and this simply goes to reinforce your point, that Universities have disgraced themselves by adopting leftist agendas and by giving degrees that are little more than testaments to the ability to mouth politically correct platitudes for 4 years.

    And even that supposed bastion of rationality, Science itself, has been co-opted and distorted beyond all recognition by the leftist tide. Who needs actual Proof when you can get what you want by simply forcing everyone to say that you have it?

    Who ever thought that Lysenko would become the patron saint of so many supposedly independant “scientists?”

    Your analogies are appropriate, as well. Now the Spanish Civil War was exacerbated by two external empires who found it useful to use Spain as a test battleground, but I do agree that we are on the same track that the Roman Republic followed. Only a few more years of this and we’ll be welcoming the new Sulla with open arms and flowers, as they did. (initially)

    The real question we face is this: Will government of the people, by the people, for the people, perish from the earth?

    That possibility gets closer and closer every day.

  15. AJ,

    Put this into your back pocket to think about.

    The Obama administration has just found a way to fund the Left without Congress:

    But the concerns of Republicans, and perhaps some Democrats, go beyond ACORN and other activist groups. The new Civil Rights Division tactic represents a departure from a fundamental principle of such cases, which is the pursuit of justice on behalf of actual victims. “If the Department of Justice recovers funds for alleged civil rights violations, the money should go to compensate victims or to the Treasury,” says Bob Driscoll, who was a top official in the Civil Rights Division during the first two years of the George W. Bush administration. “The practice of the Civil Rights Division steering settlement funds to favored advocacy groups is at odds with both civil rights laws and common sense. If Congress wants to fund certain advocacy groups or set up grants for agencies to award in order to promote non-discrimination, it can. But allowing the Civil Rights Division to steer a defendant’s money to its ideological allies is offensive.”

  16. lurker9876 says:

    My first thoughts when I read about this Civil Rights Division was how quiet the mainstream media is as opposed to their attacks against Gonzales and the firings of the US judges.

    But my second but more importantly thought was how will the mainstream media treat the Republican majority. Have the Americans discredited the mainstream media so much that no matter what they do, they know better?

    Here in Houston, we still see many people that still believe in Bill white that they will vote for him in November. Last I heard was that Rick Perry is still five points ahead but White is catching up. Think people are still nervous about the governor race. In the meantime, they are working on district 17, 23, and 27 because they are seeing a chance of overturning these democrats with conservatives. I may be wrong but I heard someone mention that Chet Edwards is one of these three democrats! It’s time to retire him.

    The local tea parties are seeing increased participation and attendance in the last few rallies. That is a good sign.

  17. AJ,

    More evidence of Obama’s “Irrational Regime” under pressure.

    Obama’s EPA is about to regulate dust in the wind!


    August 04, 2010
    The Winds of Over-Regulation
    By Rosslyn Smith
    The EPA is on the verge of declaring that naturally occurring dust is a pollutant. This means they will penalize farmers whose livestock and horticultural operations create what the Washington bureaucrats consider to be too much of it. Needless to say, the proposal has become a huge issue in farm states. Twenty-one senators recently signed a letter to the EPA. The senators state:
    We respect efforts for a clean and healthy environment, but not at the expense of common sense. These identified levels will be extremely burdensome for farmers and livestock producers to attain. Whether it’s livestock kicking up dust, soybeans being combined on a dry day in the fall, or driving a car down the gravel road, dust is a naturally occurring event.
    Fertile soil is the most precious asset a farmer possesses. Modern agricultural practices are already designed to keep soil erosion to a minimum. One wonders what the EPA thinks farmers are supposed to do in a drought — allow an already meager crop to go unharvested lest they raise any more dust? Is a rancher to allow his cattle to starve in place rather than move them to better grazing? That a bunch of desk-bound theorists would presume to second-guess those whose very livelihood depends on soil conservation is beyond mind-boggling.

    The Obama Administration is about to turn a unavoidable post-credit bubble recession into an avoidable Depression.
    As Rosslyn Smith over at the American Thinker put it:
    Main street businesses hate both over-regulation and the overhead costs necessary to bring about compliance. They don’t have a personnel director — excuse me, human resource professionals — to enforce politically correct hiring standards. They don’t have government relations departments that pore over the Federal Register and send memos to line managers about upcoming changes. Nor do they measure performance on what an accountant says their book income was for the year under International Financial Reporting Standards. They want results, measured in simple terms of do I have more cash and net hard assets this year than I had last year? To get that cash, they will often take a great many risks, but only when they feel the odds of a successful outcome aren’t stacked against them. Being docked a quarter of the annual revenue for an inadvertent mistake that was soon corrected amounts to playing against a dealer with a crooked deck.
    As the compliance consultant pointed out, when faced with such a hostile regulatory environment, some businesses decide to shut down operations. Those who labor on are deprived of the cash needed to grow and hire new employees. The owners know this and vote accordingly. So do many in their work force. Indeed, the idea of regulating the wind is an excellent metaphor for what has gone wrong with our economy. Once reason blue-collar whites have been hostile to this administration has to do with the fact that if they are not self-employed contractors in the construction trades, they are increasingly employed by small businesses. Unionized blue-collar American industry, such as the giant auto, steel and textiles operations, has been in a forty-year decline and is but a shadow of its historic self as an aggregate of employers of working-class Americans. For example, UAW Local 599 in Flint, Michigan has seen its membership more than decimated, in the literal meaning of that word, to a mere 2,500 members today from a peak of 28,000.
    My neighbors, who are skilled electricians, have been mowing lawns of late. Their long-term employment prospects are gone in a wind of market-distorting over-regulation that began with lending laws that mandated mortgage loans be made to non-creditworthy home buyers and which continue unabated today across almost every industry.
    Small businessmen and women often have dirt under their fingernails or grease stains on their work clothes and may lack the social polish the political class too often mistakes for actual intelligence. Our current administration is dominated by government-sector lawyers and academics who have seldom, if ever, worked in the private sector. The people in the private sector they do associate with are almost universally the well-groomed senior executives of the largest international conglomerates. These businessmen and women are socially smooth while being both risk-adverse and creatively hampered by an over-reliance on conventional wisdom. The conglomerates they run can factor in increased regulatory costs and are often doing very well in the current political environment. Indeed, regulation can be the friend of a public business, as it often acts as a barrier that keeps those pesky new competitors at bay.
    What these conglomerates increasingly do not do is hire large numbers of American workers.
    Someone as obtuse about Main Street America as David Brooks understands that it is American small business that controls the growth of jobs in our economy.
    Over the past decade, professionals – lawyers, regulators and legislators – have inserted themselves into more and more economic realms. The princes are perfectly at home amid these tax breaks, low-interest loans and public-private partnerships. They went to the same schools as the professionals and speak the same language. The grinds try to stay far away and regard the interlocking network of corporate-government schmoozing with undisguised contempt.
    The upshot is that we have an economy that is inching toward recovery but that is not creating much in the way of new innovations and new jobs. It’s not that the overall labor markets are shrinking. It’s just that very few grinds are bringing new ideas to scale and hiring workers to enact their us-against-the-world schemes.
    For jobs to recover, the grinds have to recover, but it’s hard to see how that will happen so long as households are still so leveraged, government debt is still so unnerving and the business climate is still so terrible for entrepreneurs.
    We’ve been mired in debates over macroeconomic models recently. But maybe the real issue is how we are going to light a fire under the country’s loners, its contrarians and its narrow, ambitious outsiders.

    One sure way not to light that fire of growth is to tell these innovators that they’ll be fined if their F-150 kicks up dust on a country road on a typical summer day.

  18. WWS says:

    “One sure way not to light that fire of growth is to tell these innovators that they’ll be fined if their F-150 kicks up dust on a country road on a typical summer day.”

    That’s not a bug, that’s a feature!

  19. AJ, WWS,

    I said this back on 16 June 2010 in AJ’s “Narcissist In Chief” post and I’ll restate it here:
    It is the nature of irrational regimes to act even more irrational under pressure as the factions inside the regime vie for power.
    The most offensive to the outside world symbolic acts are chosen to further the power interests of one or more irrational factions at the expense of the larger national interest.
    We have seen this over and over again since 9/11/2001 with the Taliban blowing up the huge Budda statue and giving sanctuary to Al-Qaeda.
    We saw it with Saddam Hussein and his dead end Sunni-Bathist followers in Iraq.
    We have seen it most recently with the North Korea torpedoing a South Korean frigate.
    Now the Obama Administration is following that script very closely with its control of the Federal Regulatory state.
    The problem now is that the American Left that Obama represents is not a monolith.
    And as this particular irrational regime become more so under the pressure of economic and political reality, it will start sending out messages that it’s wingnut factions will take all too seriously.
    as in:
    “Will no one rid me of this priest.”
    Just because the usual political Leftist political “Bulls” are doing their usual thing of Ailinskite “making it personal” doesn’t mean the Kossite fringe won’t take violent hints from their collective Ids once targets on the political right are identified for them.
    That is our near future.
    The Spanish Civil War is Coming (TSCWIC) for America.

  20. alwyr says:

    What I really liked about the TX letter to the EPA is how ‘nuanced’ it was 😉

    Is it just me, but isn’t TX pretty much just telling EPA to STFU?