Friday, January 15, 2016

You Would Think Safe Drinking Water Would Be Possible in The United States: You'ld be Wrong in Michigan

The Unnecessary Water Crisis He Precipitated
This is a priceless summation of the shit storm some Republicans hath wrought upon unsuspecting states.
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Michigan is governed by a Republican who doesn't give a shit about poor people.  I am not saying he hates them, or doesn't like them.  I mean he literally doesn't give them as much thought as he does his morning bowel movement.
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And the city of Flint is full of those very same, very poor people.  Flint used to produce cars, but the car makers moved out, taking the good jobs away.  The workers in the car industry left, but the poor people in ancillary jobs (janitors, food workers where factory workers used to eat, etc.) didn't have the funds to move.  So Flint is very very poor.
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The Republican Governor appointed a caretaker for the city, who looked at finances and in 2014 that cost-cutter's brilliant mind said, "Here's a place to cut - water.  Flint gets it's treated water from Detroit and pays for it.  But there is a river right here running through the city - and they can get their water from that river."
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Now that river is very polluted, but the appointed City Manager said - whose job was to bring the city budget in line with what the Republicans think Flint (black) lives are worth - said, "No worries, we are building a treatment plant to make it okay.  It will be ready in 2017.. or so.  Meanwhile we will use the old (lead) pipes and treatment processes that the car manufacturers did."
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General Motors, which still has some work in the city said, "No.  That water corrodes our equipment."
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The City Manger said, "Well, get your own water then GM.  That water may not be good enough for your fancy schamcy industry, but it is fine for the poor good people of Flint."
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After a year or so, people started getting very sick.  Lead poisoning was the cause per the medical community in Flint.
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So the Governor appointed a committee to study the matter.  After about 6 months, the committee said, "It looks like it might be lead poisoning."
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So the Governor appointed a second committee to figure out what do to.  After about 6 months, the committee came back and said, "We don't think there is a problem - not that much."
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To which pediatricians all over the city and state said, "Er... lead is a neurotoxin and it effects children's physical and mental development.  Even if you fix it now, you have children that will be effected forever."  The Republicans huddled on this (belief in science is not one of their strong points) and said, "Fine, we'll go back to Detroit's water."
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But those pesky pediatricians said, "Er.. you've already screwed the pooch and poisoned most all of the Flint city water pipes with two years of lead accumulation.  You have a serious problem."
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To which the cost-cutting Republicans have the perfect answer - tell the federal government to fix it.
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America is a first world country with pockets of third world slum infrastructure.  Don't get me wrong, we can afford a safe infrastructure, but then millionaires would have to pay taxes - and that is according the Republicans - a burden on job creators.  Whereas poisoning children and causing permanent mental and physical handicaps is not a burden on job creators - they just won't hire them.

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