The Winged Eternal

Blue-winged, the night

As gold leaves fall,

On winter winds

The horned owl calls

 

Flutter of wings

Sounding in flight,

Calls echoing

In feathery plight

 

Stars enfolding

Sky and shore

Beguiling souls

Bound no more

 

In winged eternal

Azure skies,

On winter winds

The horned owl cries

©2015

Wild Turkey

 

wild turkey
Wild Turkey

Thanksgiving is upon us and, what has become one of the most celebrated holidays in America, will be spent alone in many homes.  For over a quarter of a million have died in this country from a pandemic that could have been mitigated with the right leadership, and so many left without the resources to see them through the year.  A time of thanks giving has become a time of grief for the great many.

The Senate, under the auspices of Mitch McConnell, has left the relief package presented to him from the people’s House of Representatives in a graveyard of legislation he has personally tabled and prevented from becoming law.  No one person should have this kind of power in a democracy; and the shame of his leadership will haunt the rest of us for years to come.  

While Senator McConnell is on vacation for the holidays, it will not be much of a holiday for the masses in this country who trusted in our congressional leadership to do the right thing.  The senator has, after all, been employed by the electorate and should be working for the electorate.  Is this what Mitch McConnell does when he holds up vital legislation single-handedly, legislation that was created to help the majority of taxpayers in these trying times?  He facilitated the passing of the cares act in March of this year with tax cuts for the richest and less for the poorest, with support from the rest of congress based on a promise that another more comprehensive bill could be guaranteed later in the year.  Remember your promise, Mitch?  Do you think that your promise was forgotten?   

So what went wrong and why are there so many willing to vote for a man who profits from his office and leaves the great majority who elected him to suffer?  Words, as Senator Mitch McConnell proves, are only words.  It is the action behind them that reveals much more.

McConnell Releases Revised COVID-19 Bill …March 22, 2020

https://www.steptoe.com/en/news-publications/mcconnell-releases-revised-covid-19-bill.html

Cares Act bill 3548

https://www.congress.gov/bill/116th-congress/senate-bill/3548/text

McConnell calls for five-year lawsuit shield for businesses as part of next coronavirus bill

https://www.washingtonpost.com/us-policy/2020/07/06/congress-departed-two-week-recess-without-addressing-coronavirus-spikes-economic-strains/

Mitch McConnell pledges to scrap $600 boost in unemployment benefits

https://www.businessinsider.com/mitch-mcconnell-pledges-scrap-600-boost-coronavirus-unemployment-benefits-2020-5

Second stimulus check updates: GOP, ….

https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2020/04/mitch-mcconnell-coronavirus-states.html

Introduction of Senate version under Mitch McConnell on March 19, 2020 outlining some of that bill’s shortcomings (Senate Republicans Reveal New Coronavirus  Relief Package)

https://www.npr.org/2020/03/19/818253789/congress-awaits-gop-relief-plan-as-first-lawmakers-test-positive-for-coronavirus

Polymet Gets Crucial Permitting for the NorthMet Project and Copper Mining in the Arrowhead

On November 01, 2018, our DNR announced through Tom Landwehr, commissioner, approval of ten crucial permits that Polymet, a Swiss-based conglomerate, needs to start a copper mine in Arrowhead of Minnesota at the extreme headwaters of the St Lawrence Seaway.  This will open the door to an expanded footprint for the proposed NorthMet Project once begun, allowing for greater extraction of water resources from this water-dependent ecosystem, along with the taking of endangered species, Canada Lynx, Timber Wolf, birds and fowl, plant species etc that interfere with this project.

The permits granted on November first: six water appropriation permits, two dam safety permits, a public waters work permit and last (but not least) an endangered species takings permit. The project still needs water permits and air quality permits from the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency and a wetlands permit from the Army Corps of Engineers.

Other important points:

Since the project is now deemed less profitable as proposed, Polymet in all probability, will need to mine faster and expand the proposed footprint to make the money investors expect.  This means that the proposed mine, with its assured potential of 500 + years of pollution, approved by the DNR, will dwarf the damage of the mega-mine actually needed to fullfill its promise and its bottom line.  This will be in direct conflict to any environmentally sound promises.

To quote DNR commissioner, Tom Landwehr,  the NorthMet project “meets Minnesota’s regulatory standards for these permits.”  Wth such confidence as a foundation, and since our citizens are the ones who will suffer the consequences of a poor decision, being the ones who will more than likely “foot the bill,” why would the DNR under Landwehr reject the Minnesota Center for Environmental Advocacy’s request for a contested case hearing, an independent judicial review, a chance to prove that this decision could stand such scrutiny?  Why has it taken over 10 years to permit this mine?  Why do the majority of Minnesotans reject this proposal?

Funding clean water projects, and the like, without reducing point source pollution seems a poor way to protect our resources.  Is it a radical idea that the health of our freshwater trumps the profits of an international corporation?

 

 

Common Loon NE MN waters

State of Minnesota issues permits for PolyMet mine proposal

https://anitatillemans.wordpress.com/2014/01/31/arrowhead-aquifers-and-the-hill-of-three-waters/