Today's Editorials: Is the Mine Disaster Republicans' Fault?

NYT : Blames the slow response to the Crandall Canyon Mine disaster partly on the Bush administration and other Republican lawmakers. "For too long, the Bush administration and the Republican-controlled Congress allowed mine operators to put off making needed investments to ensure their workers' safety. And last year when a string of coal-mining disasters -- that killed 48 miners -- forced Congress to enact new safety legislation, it still gave companies far too much time to install communications systems that might have helped find the Utah miners".... Argues that if the United States "is to reap the rewards of globalization, the government must provide a more robust safety net to protect vulnerable workers."

WaPo: Writes that four simultaneous truck-bomb explosions in northwestern Iraq on Tuesday should spur all parties in Iraq to work with greater urgency to secure the country. "But recent history offers little basis to bet on such an outcome," the editors lament.... Notes that June was recorded as one of the worst months for airline travelers ever, and argues that some "minimum standards set by Congress for treatment and, especially, information sharing would give passengers a modicum of control and ease their suffering".... Says the FCC should "allow unlicensed use of unused TV band spectrum, when and if the technology is ready."

WSJ: Notes that Sen. Chuck Schumer has devised a "brilliantly devious" scheme to sink a congressional proposal to raise taxes on private equity: "He'll only support such a tax hike if taxes also go up on all such private partnerships." The editors explain that that's "what they call in the Beltway a "poison pill," because the more people the Senate tries to whack with higher taxes, the more opposition it draws".... Argues that opponents of DDT are "only ensuring more misery and death": "Repeated studies have shown DDT to be safe for people and nature when sprayed indoors, yet other supposedly greener pesticides like alphacypermethrin have been touted as viable alternatives. Nevertheless, the latest research shows that DDT continues to be the most effective tool we have, as well as among the cheapest," the editors reason.

By Rob Anderson |  August 16, 2007; 9:19 AM ET
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(In response to Editorial RE: Is the Mine Disaster Republicans' Fault?)

This also just in, murder, rape, suicide, typhoons, tornadoes, hurricanes, and any other bad thing that happens in this world, or any other, is because of the Republican Party.
Give me a freaking break. Enough is enough. I am sick and tired of hearing this same garbage over and over again. Please, something new from somebody!
I cannot believe a credible news reporting agency would even consider publishing nonsense such as this editorial.
Please, wake up.

Posted by: Brian | August 16, 2007 01:21 PM

Re the NYT editorial on the Utah mine situation, the "blame the Republicans" handle is silly, but Brian should read the editorial before going ballistic. Fact is, coal industry has had help from lawmakers on both sides of the aisle in resisting regulations that would have required mine owners to invest in R&D and deployment of up-to-date communications technology. MINER Act of 2006 provides new impetus but allows long lead times that put miners needlessly at risk. Two-way pager systems available now could have improved the odds of communicating with the trapped miners at Crandall Canyon -- and in mining and mine safety, improving the odds is what it's all about.

Posted by: Tom | August 16, 2007 02:52 PM

I have Fisked the WSJ's bizarre editorial on DDT at my blog, Millard Fillmore's Bathtub (

The "opponents of DDT" are right that DDT is dangerous -- look at what it did to our national bird -- but the WSJ is crazy if we push their claim one level more: The anti-DDT environmentalists have exactly zero clout with the Bush administration. Bush administration refusal to spend money for DDT to fight malaria is consistent with other inactions of the Bush administration. They have also failed to spend money to find pharmaceuticals to treat the disease, or to create better ways of providing treatment to victims of the disease, probably more important than prevention at this point.

In short, George Bush's inaction has nothing to do with environmentalists. In contrast, Environmental Defense, the group that first sued to stop DDT spraying in the U.S., has been on record for years urging Bush to get off the dime and fight malaria.

So the WSJ's editorial is really nothing more than empty words. Empty words do not prevent a single mosquito bite, nor can they cure a single case of malaria. It's time for the WSJ to stop trying to make political hay, and call for serious action against malaria.

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