Opinion: We’re just pretending not to see

(AP)

Under the Trump administration, the Occupational Health and Safety Administration has ended a publicly accessible accounting of most work-related deaths. For example, OSHA now reports a grand total of two work-related deaths in Georgia since Oct. 1, 2016, while an AJC investigation reports 33 work-related fatalities in that same time frame.

Why cease the public reporting of those additional deaths?

Trump officials have explained it as an effort to protect the privacy of the deceased and their families, although no evidence of such privacy-related complaints has been offered. On the other hand, there is ample evidence of complaints from employers and industries that don’t like the negative publicity that comes when their workers were killed on the job.

If OSHA doesn’t report them to the public, it’s almost like they didn’t happen.

Under pressure from the Chamber of Commerce and other groups, OSHA has also stopped announcing major fines that it imposes on employers, again to save them from embarrassment. An agency with a legal mission to protect workers is being transformed into an agency that instead attempts to protect the reputations of slipshod employers.

Two weeks ago — and just 10 days before Hurricane Harvey hit — the Trump administration also killed a pending regulation that barred federal financing of new projects such as highways and hospitals within 100-year flood plains.

“The revoked standard required public infrastructure such as subsidized housing to be built 2 feet above the 100-year flood standard, while critical infrastructure like hospitals and fire departments would need to rise by 3 feet,” according to the Houston-based E&E News, which covers the energy and environment industries.

That decision was the result of hard lobbying by the National Association of Home Builders and other development groups. As a result, federally funded infrastructure built to replace damage done by Hurricane Harvey will not be rebuilt in accordance with that higher standard, meaning that we’ll once again be spending tens of billions of dollars to build infrastructure in areas that are more prone to flooding, which will put lives as well as public investment at risk.

The regulation rescinded under the Trump administration was proposed in part as a response to rising sea levels caused by climate change. In the Houston/Galveston area, for example, the sea has already been rising at a rate of more than two feet per century and is expected to accelerate.

As NOAA warns:

The effects of rising sea levels along most of the continental U.S. coastline are expected to become more noticeable and much more severe in the coming decades, likely more so than any other climate-change related factor. Any acceleration in sea-level rise that is predicted to occur this century will further intensify nuisance flooding impacts over time, and will further reduce the time between flood events.”

Of course, according to the Trump administration, climate change isn’t happening, which means the seas aren’t rising. Except of course they are. As with work-related deaths, we’re just pretending not to notice.

 

Reader Comments 0

1632 comments
straker
straker

Surely - "two cents"   Wow, you know more than 98% of those world class climatologists.  Who knew?

Surelyyoujest
Surelyyoujest

@straker  That was elgrunir's 2 cents -  mine was a reply.  Didn't cost me, or anyone else, anything....

Surelyyoujest
Surelyyoujest

elgrunir 5ptsFeatured
21 minutes ago

Two cents about climate change:

Climate is a significant part of our environment and plays a large role in shaping it.

Did you know that the most hurricanes in one decade in the U.S. was in 1880's with 29 affecting the US?   The 1970's was the slowest decade with 12, and the most hurricanes in one year was 7 in 1986. The top-ranking storm in terms of property damage is the Great Miami Hurricane of 1926, with losses between $140–157 billion in 2005 dollars, (compared to Katrina and her $84.6billion damage).


td1234
td1234

MAGA


"

US revised second-quarter GDP up 3.0% vs 2.7% rise expected
  • The U.S. economy grew faster than initially thought in the second quarter, notching its quickest pace in more than two years.
  • There are signs that the momentum was sustained at the start of the third quarter.
  • Gross domestic product increased at a 3.0 percent annual rate in the April-June period, the Commerce Department said

The U.S. economy grew faster than initially thought in the second quarter, notching its quickest pace in more than two years, and there are signs that the momentum was sustained at the start of the third quarter.

Gross domestic product increased at a 3.0 percent annual rate in the April-June period, the Commerce Department said in its second estimate on Wednesday. The upward revision from the 2.6 percent pace reported last month reflected robust consumer spending as well as strong business investment.

Growth last quarter was the strongest since the first quarter of 2015 and followed a 1.2 percent pace in the January-March period. Economists had expected that second-quarter GDP growth would be raised to a 2.7 percent rate.

Retail sales and business spending data so far suggest the economy maintained its stamina early in the third quarter. Other data on Wednesday showed private employers ramped up hiring in August, adding 237,000 jobs to their payrolls. That was up from 201,000 jobs in July.

The ADP National Employment Report was released ahead of the government's more comprehensive employment report on Friday, which is expected to show solid job gains in August and diminishing labor market slack.

The dollar extended gains versus a basket of currencies on the data, while prices for U.S. Treasuries fell. U.S. stock index futures trimmed gains.

Strong growth and a labor market that is near full employment support views the Federal Reserve will lay out a plan to start unwinding its $4.2 trillion portfolio of Treasury bonds and mortgage-backed securities next month and increase interest rates in December.

With GDP quickening in the second quarter, the economy grew 2.1 percent in the first half of 2017. That was up from the 1.9 percent reported last month.

elgrunir
elgrunir

According to the timing, it's appropriate.

You making the comment doesn't cut off the truth.

LogicalDude
LogicalDude

@DownInAlbany @td1234 Let me know what Trump did to get those numbers where they are. 


Reality that Trump's fiscal year doesn't start yet in 3. . . 2. . . 1. . . 

td1234
td1234

@LogicalDude He was elected and consumer confidence and wall street spiked. Consumers began to believe things were about to change and started buying. He and Congress cut regulations and businesses began to hire. 


Happy days are here again the progs are out of power and the middle class will spend. 

Visual_Cortex
Visual_Cortex

@LogicalDude @DownInAlbany @td1234

What matters is he's helping the financial services "industry" build a deluxe, beyootiful new Big Sh##pile.

And when it collapses we'll have so much collapsing we'll be sick of collapsing.

elgrunir
elgrunir

There's a spike after EVERY election.

LogicalDude
LogicalDude

@td1234 @LogicalDude "wall street spiked."


yeah, they sure love the thought of all those regulations falling by the wayside. 


You know, so they can take advantage of the regular folks and get away with it. 

td1234
td1234

@elgrunir After Obama was elected the stock market continued to crash, consumer confidence went down and companies were laying off 800,000 per month so your statement is not accurate. 

LogicalDude
LogicalDude

@td1234 @Visual_Cortex I do not WANT it to fail. I want the common sense regulations that have kept the economy rolling on a positive note for the past 7 years to continue. 


But with the removal of regulations. . AGAIN. we can likely expect the same results of the previous times that those regulations were removed. 


You know. the Great Depression and the Great Recession. 


But hey, if you think THIS TIME it'll be different, then good luck. 

td1234
td1234

@honested Companies are hiring and wages are going up so the consumer can see it. 

td1234
td1234

@honested It was not a depression by definition and we have suffered through the worst recovery in modern history. 

Visual_Cortex
Visual_Cortex

@td1234 @Visual_Cortex

You seem to want the economy to fail. 

I don't, and that's why I wouldn't trust a Republican to change a 20, let alone be in a position to affect financial regulations and tax/spending policy.

td1234
td1234

@Visual_Cortex It is documented. GDP growth over the past 7 years has been horrible under the Obama reign. 

td1234
td1234

@Visual_Cortex Well, Republicans are in charge and will be for the foreseeable future so you either want him and the nation to succeed or fail. Which is it?  

Eye wonder
Eye wonder

In light of DoubleDown's blog diarrhea, Eye thinks it is fair to ask -- when was the last time DoubleDown threatened to leave and never come back?

td1234
td1234

@KUTGF You progs do not need a gay leg to hump. 

Surelyyoujest
Surelyyoujest

Y'ALL are just pretending not to see: "House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) on Tuesday condemned the 'antifa' protesters who clashed with President Trump supporters in Berkeley, Calif. Sunday.

"Our democracy has no room for inciting violence or endangering the public, no matter the ideology of those who commit such acts," Pelosi said in a statement. "The violent actions of people calling themselves antifa in Berkeley this weekend deserve unequivocal condemnation, and the perpetrators should be arrested and prosecuted."

rimsky
rimsky

@Surelyyoujest Screw her.   I am for Antifa.  They are the only antidote for the Nazis.

Visual_Cortex
Visual_Cortex

@Surelyyoujest

I don't know that the statement's super helpful, but on its face I see nothing with which I disagree.

rimsky
rimsky

@KUTGF @rimsky @Surelyyoujest Mr KUTGF I disagree on that.  Fascist you give them an inch they cut your throat.  IMO.

If they are peaceful..........

Surelyyoujest
Surelyyoujest

@KUTGF @rimsky @Surelyyoujest  Nobody said you couldn't - you can also be against KKK, Nazi's, violence and fascism and be conservative, too, while being FOR free speech and other Constitutional things.

KUTGF
KUTGF

@Surelyyoujest @KUTGF @rimsky  And sweetie... no one said you could not.  But "very fine people" do not march along side Nazi's and KKK members screaming out hate.

Visual_Cortex
Visual_Cortex

@Surelyyoujest

...but given that this is her neck-of-the-woods, it's probably appropriate she comment as she did, so maybe it is helpful.

Surelyyoujest
Surelyyoujest

@Visual_Cortex @rimsky @Surelyyoujest  She did say "The violent actions of people calling themselves antifa in Berkeley this weekend deserve unequivocal condemnation, and the perpetrators should be arrested and prosecuted."  That's pretty much saying she's anti-Antifa since that is what that group does.  I do see your point, however.

rimsky
rimsky

@KUTGF @rimsky @Surelyyoujest I never owned a gun till 5 years ago and didn't need it.  Right around then when some one threatened me and family with violence.... and now I am a gun owner.