Things I am passionate about. Injustice, stupidity, intolerance, bigotry and small-mindedness. Oh and there might just be some humor to offset the whole thing.

Posts Tagged ‘John McCain’

Trivial Pursuits

Posted by morganwrites on July 2, 2008

Enough sniping. Barack Obama should accept John McCain’s offer on town hall meetings.

“WE’VE HAD about as positive a presidential campaign that we’ve seen in maybe a generation,” Barack Obama told Fox Business Network yesterday. Perhaps, but that’s not saying much. The gravity of the issues — war and terrorism abroad, an economy struggling with soaring energy prices and mounting foreclosures at home — is belied by the triviality of the campaign debate. The political discourse is dominated by misleading sound bites and blistering e-mail accusations. Each campaign pounces on a misstep — or alleged misstep — by the other, or someone loosely associated with the other, and seeks to inflate it into the telling faux pas of the day, or at least the hour. In this, the campaigns are aided and abetted by a 24-7 news mentality that needs fresh, and easily digestible, material to keep the audience entertained without taxing its attention span.

This is not, as Mr. Obama‘s comments suggest, a new development, yet the velocity, ferocity and constancy of the assaults have intensified in this cycle. The uproar over Obama vetter James A. Johnson gives way to the uproar over John McCain adviser Charles R. Black Jr. Neither faux scandal offers particular insight into how either candidate would handle the weighty issues facing the next president. Little matter. No shot remains untaken, no derogatory adjective goes unused. Why debate health-care policy when you can attack a surrogate? The theory seems to be that the victor is whichever campaign can yell “flip-flop” the loudest.

The sad part is that the country will be choosing between two presidential candidates who can do better — and who, as Post reporter Dan Balz correctly noted the other day, have said they want to run a different, more civil and more substantive campaign. Indeed, underneath the volleys of vicious triviality, the candidates are engaged in serious discussion, and serious disagreement, about important issues, from tax policy to treatment of detainees to health care. On energy, for instance, Mr. McCain wants to lift the ban on offshore drilling; Mr. Obama does not. Mr. McCain pushes for an expansion of nuclear power; Mr. Obama is more skeptical of nuclear energy and attacks Mr. McCain’s support for a storage facility at Yucca Mountain. Both men support a cap-and-trade regime to address climate change, but there are important differences between their approaches.

The sooner the sniping stops and the serious discussion starts, the better off the country will be — and the best way to achieve that would be for the candidates to meet, one-on-one, as often as possible. Mr. McCain’s proposal to hold weekly town hall meetings was — as the Obama campaign said — “appealing.” That was more than three weeks ago. Since then, the Obama campaign has countered with the offer of a single town hall meeting, on nobody-will-be-watching July 4, and a second debate on foreign policy — this in addition to the three traditional fall debates. Mr. Obama has written that “one of my favorite tasks of being a senator is hosting town hall meetings.” He launched his campaign decrying “the ease with which we’re distracted by the petty and trivial.” Now, he should seize the opportunity to practice the change he preaches.


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Posted by morganwrites on June 29, 2008

Liberals dismiss studies that show a link between abortion and breast cancer, claiming they are biased because the people promoting the studies are “anti-choice.”

For the same reason, no one should believe the Democrats’ “energy” policies.

Democrats couldn’t care less about high gas prices. The consistent policy of the Democratic Party, going back at least to Jimmy Carter, has been to jack up gas prices so we can all start pedaling around on tricycles.

Environmentalists are constantly clamoring for higher gas taxes as the cure-all to their insane global warming theory. Clinton proposed a 26-cent tax on gas. John Kerry said it should be 50 cents. Gore endorsed the Malthusian proposal of Paul and Anne Ehrlich in “The Population Explosion” that gas taxes be raised gradually to match prices in Europe and Japan.

The result is consumers now pay about 46 cents per gallon in gasoline taxes. That’s not including taxes paid directly to the government by the oil companies and passed onto consumers. As the inestimable economist John Lott has pointed out, in the past 25 years oil companies have paid more than three times in taxes what they have made in profits.

B. Hussein Obama’s response to soaring gas prices is to have the oil companies collect even more money from us at the pump, proposing a “windfall profits tax” on oil companies. “Corporate taxes” sound like taxes on rich people, but all they do is force corporations to collect taxes on behalf of the government.

Democrats have worked hard to ensure that Americans pay as much for gas as Europeans do. After a quarter-century of gas tax hikes, a ban on drilling for oil and a complete destruction of the nuclear power industry in America, I guess liberals can declare: Mission accomplished!

In response to skyrocketing gas prices, liberals say, practically in unison, “We can’t drill our way out of this crisis.”

What does that mean? This is like telling a starving man, “You can’t eat your way out of being hungry!” “You can’t water your way out of drought!” “You can’t sleep your way out of tiredness!” “You can’t drink yourself out of dehydration!”

Seriously, what does it mean? Finding more oil isn’t going to increase the supply of oil?

It is the typical Democratic strategy to babble meaningless slogans, as if they have a plan. Their plan is: the permanent twilight of the human race. It’s the only solution they can think of to deal with the beastly traffic on the LIE (Long Island Expressway).

How do liberals propose we acquire the energy required for the economic activity and production that results in light appearing when they flick a switch? The larger enterprise involved in producing that little miracle eludes them.

Liberals complain that — as B. Hussein Obama put it — there’s “no way that allowing offshore drilling would lower gas prices right now. At best you are looking at five years or more down the road.”

This is as opposed to airplanes that run on woodchips, which should be up and running any moment now.

Moreover, what was going on five years ago? Why didn’t anyone propose drilling back then?

Say, you know what we need? We need a class of people paid to anticipate national crises and plan solutions in advance. It would be such an important job, the taxpayers would pay them salaries so they wouldn’t have to worry about making a living and could just sit around anticipating crises.

If only we had had such a group — let’s call them “elected representatives” — they could have proposed drilling five years ago!

But of course we do pay people to anticipate national problems and propose solutions. Some of them — we’ll call them Republicans — did anticipate high gas prices and propose solutions.

Six long years ago President Bush had the foresight to demand that Congress allow drilling in a minuscule portion of the Alaska’s barren, uninhabitable Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR). In 2002, Bush, Tom DeLay and the entire Republican Party were screaming from the rooftops: Drill! Drill! Drill!

We’d be gushing oil now — except the Democrats stopped us from drilling.

Drilling on only 0.01 percent of ANWR’s 19 million acres was projected to produce about 10 billion barrels of oil. From all domestic sources combined, we currently produce about 1.8 billion barrels of oil per year. To a layperson like myself, 10 billion barrels seems like a lot of oil.

The other party — plus John McCain — ferociously opposed drilling in ANWR, drilling offshore or drilling anyplace else. Instead of Drill! Drill! Drill!, their motto could be: Kill! Kill! Kill!

They refuse to believe our abortion studies? I refuse to believe they care about Americans having to pay high gas prices.

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