Their plan to rig the 2016 election. If you live in Pennsylvania, this would be a good time to start making calls and writing letters. It’s a transparent attempt to make sure that a few thousand votes in Bumfuck are equal to the city of Philadelphia. Fair? Of course not. That’s not how Republicans roll.

Giant sinkhole

Don’t be silly! Mining never affects anything, everyone knows that:

Last spring, residents in Louisiana’s Assumption Parish noticed peculiar bubbles rising to the surface in some bayous. Soon after, small earthquakes shook the towns and raised some eyebrows. In August, i09 writes, the earth suddenly yawned open, swallowing several acres of swampy forest and forming a massive sinkhole full of water, brines, oil and natural gas. Geologists say nature did not cause the hole. Rather, mining activities conducted by the oil and gas service company Texas Brine opened up this apparent pit to hell.

The company, however, denies responsibility. The United States Geological Survey is investigating the incident and has determined that a salt cavern deep below the surface collapsed and caused the earthquake-like tremors, not the other way around. The collapse, they say, was likely brought about by extensive mining.

Since it first appeared, the sinkhole has reached 8 acres in size. Now known as the Bayou Corne Sinkhole, it’s caused the forced evacuation of 300 residents in the nearby town of Assumption, TreeHugger writes. Officials do not know when the evacuees might be allowed to return to their homes.

Despite efforts to contain the muck, nearby waterways already shows signs of contamination, including toxic hydrogen sulfide. Louisiana Commissioner of Conservation James Welsh fined Texas Brine $100,000 for failing to meet several deadlines for the cleanup effort, i09 writes.

At this point, officials are beginning to fear that the sinkhoke may have to become a “sacrifice zone,” joining the ranks of such uninhabitable, manmade disaster zones as the giant wormhole in Guatemala City and the spewing mudlake of Java.

The executive orders translated

I wish I didn’t know so many people who thought like this. Charlie Pierce:

Slate‘s Dave Weigel helpfully has listed the 23 Executive Orders issued by the president today in connection with his initiative on gun violence. Let us put them all through the helpful NRA Tyranny Translator and see what we get, OK?

1. Issue a Presidential Memorandum to require federal agencies to make relevant data available to the federal background check system.

(The singular of “data” is “tyrant.” Look it up.)

2. Address unnecessary legal barriers, particularly relating to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, that may prevent states from making information available to the background check system.

(You’ll get our schizophrenia when you pry it from our cold dead hands.)

3. Improve incentives for states to share information with the background check system.

(Someone in Vermont will know what I’m doing. The jackboot of Ben And Jerry’s is on my neck.)

4. Direct the Attorney General to review categories of individuals prohibited from having a gun to make sure dangerous people are not slipping through the cracks.

(First they came for the insane, and I said nothing, because I was not insane. Then, they came for the felons, and I said nothing, because I was not a felon. Then they came for the Christians in my town…wait, maybe I am insane.)

5. Propose rulemaking to give law enforcement the ability to run a full background check on an individual before returning a seized gun.

(See? SEE? The gun is already seized. They’re putting together “new” regulations but they’re already talking about “seized” guns. False flag! False flag!)

6. Publish a letter from ATF to federally licensed gun dealers providing guidance on how to run background checks for private sellers.

(I am bunkered down outside, near the curb, in case the ATF invades my property by mail.)

7. Launch a national safe and responsible gun ownership campaign.

(We have that now. It’s called Everybody Gets A Gun. We already are working on the updated version; Everybody Gets More Guns.)

8. Review safety standards for gun locks and gun safes (Consumer Product Safety Commission).

(First, the CPSC came for the toys….slippery slope! Slippery slope!)

9. Issue a Presidential Memorandum to require federal law enforcement to trace guns recovered in criminal investigations.

(If criminals are outlawed, only outlaws will be criminals.)

10. Release a DOJ report analyzing information on lost and stolen guns and make it widely available to law enforcement.

(My right to lose my gun and have a cannibal murderer find it cannot be abridged.)

11. Nominate an ATF director.

(If the jackboot fits…)

12. Provide law enforcement, first responders, and school officials with proper training for active shooter situations.

(Wait, I like this.)
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