🇺🇸 The Clean Water Act

Plus, have you ever thought about replacing streetlights with glow-in-the-dark trees?

The Flag


Good morning, and happy Friday. People often say to look on the bright side of things, and though the phrase may seem trite, it turns out that positive thinking is more powerful than you might think. According to a recent study from the Yale School of Public Health, an optimistic outlook on aging can help older adults with mild cognitive impairment regain normal cognition.

Plus, have you ever thought about replacing streetlights with glow-in-the-dark trees? Us neither. But one group in California tried to genetically engineer plants to do just that. Classic!

Also, for spread-out families who want to share their memories without the security risk of social media, check out today’s partner, a private social network designed to keep your whole family in the loop.


Right: Why Is Biden So Unpopular, Even With Democrats? Matt Robison, Newsweek

Right: Biden's Green New Deal Will Melt U.S. Electric Grid Sen. Markwayne Mullin, FOX News

Right: Washington Post Attacks Homeschooling John Hirschauer, The American Conservative

Left: Default Avert, Lesson Left Unlearned Heather Parton, Salon

Left: Conservatives Are Bullying Pro-LGBTQ Companies Arwa Mahdawi, Guardian

Left: The Joshua Generation Moves On Sarah Jones, New York Magazine


Senate Kills Student Loan Handout, AI-Drone Turns on Human, Warnings on Each Cigarette

US: Senate votes to kill $400 billion student loan handout, sets up fifth Biden veto (Fox News)

US: Biden says he got 'sandbagged' after he tripped and fell onstage at Air Force graduation (AP)

US: USAF Chief Says AI-Drone Killed Human Operator During Simulation Test: Report (Daily Wire)

US: Arizona announces limits on construction in Phoenix area as groundwater disappears (CNN)

US: Unions are relieved as the Supreme Court leaves the right to strike intact (NPR)

World: Canada to require health warnings on individual cigarettes (WaPo)

Tech: Meta unveils Quest 3 mixed reality headset ahead of Apple's VR debut (Reuters)


Throwing Social Media For A Loop

Did you hear about Amazon’s FTC settlement? The tech giant will have to refund customers $30 million for using Ring and Alexa to collect the voice data of young children. There’s a reason some families don't want to broadcast their best memories for all the world (and social media algorithms and data silos) to see.

Loop offers a safe alternative for families who want to share memories with their loved ones, but not the general public. Invest in reuniting your family with the Loop app and digital frame. Or invest in a company backed by Silicon Valley royalty with $2M+ in revenue by investing in Loop itself!

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The Clean Water Act

Last month, the Supreme Court ruled in favor of a couple who wanted to build a home on their Idaho property, the construction of which would disturb wetlands. This pushes back on the EPA’s authority to regulate such construction and has upset some who say the decision will make it harder to fight ecological damage, as well as climate change.

Reporting from The Right: Supreme Court delivers blow to key Biden environmental policy Thomas Catenacci, Fox News

Reporting from The Left: Supreme Court rolls back federal safeguards for wetlands under Clean Water Act Ariane de Vogue and Devan Cole, CNN

From the Flag: The court’s majority agreed that the EPA’s authority has been extended too far, as the agency is intended to oversee wetlands connected to “navigable” waters. More left-leaning commentary argues this is part of a continued “conservative” push from SCOTUS. Here’s more from both sides.


SCOTUS Strikes Back Against the Administrative State (Again)

  • This decision frees up a massive amount of land for development after the federal government effectively stunted things in the 1970s.

  • Many property owners know the government is out of control after encountering problems when trying to complete projects at home.

  • 1972’s Clean Water Act was intended to remove ambiguity concerning the nation’s waterways, but paved the way for overbearing regulation.

Supreme Court delivers huge win for affordable housing and the rule of law Editorial Staff, Washington Examiner: "For 16 years, a family wanted to build a home on an empty lot near a lake in Idaho . When they began to move 'dirt and rocks' ... the EPA forced them to stop and ordered them to pay $40,000 a day until they put the dirt and rocks back where they had found them. The house was never built. ... (Last month) the Supreme Court ruled that the Idaho family, the Sacketts, had been wrongly obstructed and could go ahead with their house. (This) will liberate a landmass the size of California for development. ... This country used to be able to build things. But starting in the 1970s, Congress and the federal government have made it increasingly difficult for anyone to jump through all the regulatory hoops necessary to get projects started. ... a unanimous Supreme Court acknowledged the EPA had gone too far, and that is a good start."

A Clean Water Landmark for Liberty at the Supreme Court Editorial Board, Wall Street Journal: "The Supreme Court issued another landmark decision pruning back an overgrown administrative state... Don’t believe the cries that the 5-4 decision (while all nine Justices ruled for the Sacketts, they disagreed on the scope of federal power) will despoil America’s precious wetlands. The majority simply stopped a regulatory land grab. ... Americans anywhere in the country could have their backyard declared a wetland... EPA advises landowners to solicit the Army Corps’ opinion before doing anything with their property. But 75% of the time the Corps claims jurisdiction. Does federal jurisdiction really 'encompass any backyard that is soggy enough for some minimum period of time?' Justice Samuel Alito asks in the majority opinion... 'How about ditches, swimming pools, and puddles?' ... The current High Court’s project reining in a runaway administrative state is one of the most important in Court history. The Sacketts’ victory after their long ordeal is a triumph for the liberty of every American."

One more opinion piece from the Right: The EPA Is Stopped at the Water’s Edge Editors, National Review


Forget Fresh Water, There Are Properties To Build

  • This ruling puts the nation’s supply of fresh drinking water and its maritime economy at risk.

  • SCOTUS egregiously abandoned textualism to overturn a long-standing precedent that’s protected wetlands for decades.

  • The majority’s ruling seems to ignore that pollutants dumped away from large bodies of water can find their way into what we drink.

The Supreme Court just gutted the Clean Water Act. It could be devastating. Richard Lazarus, Washington Post Opinion: "The ruling arrives almost a year after the court’s conservative majority made the worst fears of environmentalists a reality in West Virginia v. Environmental Protection Agency, which severely curtailed the ability of the nation’s environmental laws to protect public health and welfare. The Sackett ruling doubled down on that disregard for pollution and public health, and the effect will likely be devastating. ... It could lead to the removal of millions of miles of streams and millions of acres of wetlands from the law’s direct protection. Basic protections necessary to ensure clean, healthy water for human consumption and enjoyment will be lost. ... Nor will the nation’s economy be spared. Myriad businesses rely on clean water for their industrial processes. The fishing, real estate and tourism industries are all highly dependent on the protections that the Clean Water Act has provided over the past half-century."

Samuel Alito’s Assault on Wetlands Is So Indefensible That He Lost Brett Kavanaugh Mark Joseph Stern, Slate: "(Last month) the Supreme Court dealt a devastating blow to the nation’s wetlands by rewriting a statute the court does not like to mean something it does not mean. The court’s decision in Sackett v. EPA is one of its most egregious betrayals of textualism in memory. Put simply: The Clean Water Act protects wetlands that are 'adjacent' to larger bodies of water. Five justices, however, do not think the federal government should be able to stop landowners from destroying wetlands on their property. To close this gap between what the majority wants and what the statute says, the majority crossed through the word 'adjacent' and replaced it with a new test that’s designed to give landowners maximum latitude to fill in, build upon, or otherwise obliterate some of the most valuable ecosystems on earth."

One more opinion piece from the Left: A new Supreme Court opinion is terrible news if you care about clean water Ian Millhiser, Vox


Economic Growth and Ecological Protection

Polling conducted over the past three decades shows opinions have gone back and forth as to what’s most important: protecting the environment, or economic growth?

In 1984, 61% of respondents said it was more important to protect the environment, compared with 28% who opted for economic growth.

This March, 52% said protecting the environment is more important, while 43% opted to prioritize economic growth.

That same survey found 39% feel global warming is “generally exaggerated” while 36% feel it’s “underestimated.” In 1997, 31% said “exaggerated” and 27% said “underestimated” (Gallup).


In The Loop, Age Of Cobotics, Patented Pick-Me-Up

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Ruth Retires, Food Truck Economics, The Real America

Ruth (top row, left, holding a catcher's mitt and mask) at St. Mary's, 1912

On June 2, 1935, Babe Ruth, one of the greatest players in the history of baseball, ends his Major League playing career after 22 seasons, 10 World Series and 714 home runs. The following year, Ruth, a larger-than-life figure whose name became synonymous with baseball, was one of the first five players inducted into the sport’s hall of fame.

MEL: The Rickety Economics of Food Trucks

Fast Company: 6 mistakes that sabotage great communication

LA Times: A map of 1,001 novels to show us where to find the real America

Today I Learned that from 2009 to 2019, out of 212 cruise ship overboard incidents only 48 people were rescued.