Playing the Blame Game for Flint

There is no CSPAN-3 HD

    A long and harsh hearing before Congress was long awaited and finally went before the comittee this morning.

    Unless you've been in a medically induced coma for the last year, as PA Rep Matt Cartwright pointed out MI Gov Rick Snyder was NOT, you've probably heard about the Flint, Michigan water crisis that started after Flint changed its water supply from treated Detroit Water and Sewerage Department, to the local Flint River. This was a money saving move that many could have predicted would result similarly to the situation in which we find ourselves.  This chart is just a peak into the effects of this switch:



The Hearing

  The hearing today was to basically to determine who, if anyone (else), should bear responsibility for this and whether or not Snyder and McCarthy should be asked to resign from their perspective positions.

    The story of what happened is different depending on who you ask, so we'll leave that part up to you to determine where you stand. However, it was blatantly obvious that all of the republican Congressmen fired all guns at McCarthy, and were less harsh on also republican Gov. Snyder. 

    McCarthy presents a compelling case. She does not claim to absolve the EPA from any blame in the situation. What she does claim, is that while mistakes were made, the EPA acted appropriately within the confines of the law, and it was on the state aka Gov. Snyder's office to implement sanctions and report testing results initially to determine the role of the EPA. She adamantly stands firm that the EPA in no way CAUSED this debacle, and while more COULD have been done by her department, it is the state's responsibility to report issues in the proper context and timing.

    Anytime Snyder opened his mouth, you could hear how polished his talking points were and how diplomatic he was trying to maintain. He sold out the people of his state in a horrible way, and while the EPA could have perhaps acted more proactively to correct the damage, the damage itself is predominately the responsibility of Snyder.

    We all know how politics work, but sometimes it becomes too much. Chairman Jason Chaffetz lead the hearing, but was clearly not only uninformed, but highly biased. He used his time to directly blame McCarthy and the EPA and accuse her of making claims she simply hadn't made. Chaffetz, like a father yelling at his guilty daughter, he berated McCarthy saying she came to the hearing to absolve herself and her department of ALL guilt, which is simply untrue. McCarthy says many times that with hindsight, she wishes they had done more and done it sooner. 

Hindsight is 20/20

    Aside from acting so outlandish, Chaffetz was not even well informed on how the laws he references, actually work. He makes claims that suggest he expected the EPA to MAKE the state do things that simply are not in the power of the EPA. Many times she tries to clarify how the Lead and Copper Act works, and that she and the EPA followed the law to the letter.

     Furthermore, the person who was the head of the EPA during all this ALREADY RESIGNED! That's right, Gina McCarthy is only the head of the EPA as of January, when then top administrator Susan Hedmen resigned from her position due to all of this. So for Chaffetz to claim that McCarthy comes to the hearing to solely blame the state is borderline slanderous and just outright untrue.

    The fact is, if Snyder and his office had acted responsibly and as their duties actually call for, we would perhaps not even be in the situation as it stands. Who knows how much damage, how many people, could have been saved if the state acted as it was supposed to. 

We here at Awe, Really are not in the business of telling you what to think as much as how to think, but I will certainly tell you that I know where I stand.

    The EPA has taken their share of the responsibility when Hedmen stepped down. Now it's Snyder's turn to take responsibility for his share, which happens to be the lion's share. The blood and birth defects resulting from poisoned drinking water in Flint, MI is on Governor Rick Snyder's hands and this Awe, Really Dude thinks he needs to resign.