Those Cowardly, Propagandistic Greens

By on 5.18.11 | 12:59PM

Last week John Stossel dedicated his program to the energy issue and specifically the natural gas boom, much of which has opened up exploration of the massive Marcellus Shale deposits in Pennsylvania. Environmental groups and a filmmaker -- Josh Fox, who directed the Oscar-nominated "Gasland" -- have raised false claims about alleged dangers of hydrofracturing ("fracking") of underground rock by exploration companies to access the gas. But when Stossel invited them on his show to discuss their allegations, they refused.

Instead, Commonwealth Foundation president Matthew Brouillette and former PA Department of Environmental Protection head John Hanger (who founded the largest state environmental group, PennFuture) appeared with Stossel. Given Hanger's views that gas fracking is largely safe and his enviro-cred, the alarmist Greens' fraudulent claims were seriously discredited.

Bird Brains and Others Defend Michael Mann

By on 4.15.11 | 2:30PM

Yesterday a dozen liberal and academic (but I repeat myself) groups rose in defense of Penn State Climategate scientist Michael Mann, making up reasons such as "academic freedom" to deny American Tradition Institute's request for Mann's emails and records from the University of Virginia, his previous employer. ATI, where I am executive director, is asking for similar records that Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli has asked for under the state's Fraud Against Taxpayers Act, but has been denied so far by the university and lower courts.

Environmentalist: Fracking Safe

By on 2.11.11 | 10:43AM

John Hanger, who just departed with Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell as his Secretary of Environmental Protection, recently gave an exit interview to the anti-natural gas, Herb & Marion Sandler-fueled ProPublica. Previously Hanger was president of the environmental activist group Citizens for Pennsylvania's Future (PennFuture), and both he and the group have repeatedly called for increased taxes on natural gas companies drilling in the Marcellus Shale region (which takes up just about the whole state).

Specter’s Adieu

By on 12.23.10 | 9:07AM

The Washington Examiner's Tim Carney today reviews Democrat Sen. Arlen Specter's farewell speech to the U.S. Senate, and characterizes it as "20 minutes of self-serving gripes, empty name-calling, and petty meanness." He reports that the desperate party-switcher longed for the good old days:

Recalling his old gang of moderate Republicans, Specter painted a composite picture of the sort of senator he admires, such as the late Ted Stevens, the infamous porker given to bouts of arrogance, who lost re-election in a cloud of scandal and after being convicted of corruption (Stevens was cleared thanks to prosecutorial misconduct). Specter also fondly recalled Sen. Bob Packwood, who resigned under threat of expulsion after facing sexual harassment charges.

Half the moderates Specter invoked in his reminiscence have since cashed out to K Street, including John Warner, Slade Gorton, Warren Rudman, and Jack Danforth.

Carney also provided an illustration of Specter's rank hypocrisy:

Enviro Overreach Delays Restitution

By on 12.16.10 | 12:42PM

Well, fracking, well -- environmentalists have suffered an embarrassing loss. Rather than extracting blood, water, and a couple of limbs from Texas-based Cabot Oil & Gas over contaminated water supplies in Dimock Township, Pa., the state Department of Environmental Protection and Secretary John Hanger have agreed to settle on an appropriate pound of flesh. For most of this year Hanger has pushed for the construction of a water line from Lake Montrose to Dimock at an estimated cost of $12 million, despite opposition from local officials. The line would have run about 12.5 miles and remedied the problem for a whole 18 families -- my Commonwealth Foundation colleagues called it the "Pipeline to Nowhere." Cabot and others favored other approaches that would have taken care of the issue.

Note from Pennsylvania

By on 11.3.10 | 12:59AM

From my pals/bosses at the Commonwealth Foundation, via Facebook:

PA just elected a Republican Governor, a Republican US Senator, a Republican-controlled Senate, a Republican-controlled House, and a 12-7 Republican edge in Congress. Two questions:

1) Is PA still a "blue" state?
2) How will Republicans govern this time?

GOP Gets Pa. Governorship

By on 11.2.10 | 10:01PM

Fox calls the Pennsylvania's governor race for former Republican Attorney General Tom Corbett, in a close race. Will the U.S. Senate race follow for former GOP Congressman Pat Toomey?

Good Sports in Williamsport

By on 8.20.10 | 11:51AM

My Commonwealth Foundation colleague Nathan Benefield calls attention to what was a potential showdown over hotel rooms between those frackin' Marcellus Shale natural gas explorers from outside of Pennsylvania, and the tourists who will soon be heading to Williamsport for the Little League World Series.

Environmentalist Hypocrisy

By on 7.8.10 | 4:12PM

That Big Oil (or whatever fossil fuel industry) funds free-market, limited government organizations and candidates (who also tend to fit into the global warming realism camp) is a familiar line of attack forwatermelon groups and the formerly mainstream media.

Oily Politics Billowing in Pennsylvania

By on 7.1.10 | 1:33PM

Last week the attention-starved new Pennsylvania chapter of the League of Conservation Voters (Conservation Voters of PA) issued a pipsqueaky press release calling for Tom Corbett, the GOP candidate for governor, to return a contribution from Anadarko Petroleum, because the company owns 25 percent of the destroyed oil well in the Gulf of Mexico and has not (yet) ponied up for cleanup efforts -- so they say.