For the first time in a long time, Americans are really starting to feel true pain at the pump. So what do politicians do? They use this unfortunate period of time to push initiatives to help special interest groups.
President Bush and John McCain announced that they will seek an end to the offshore drilling ban, citing high gas prices and our dependence on foreign oil.
Sadly, opening up the rest of the gulf to drilling is not going to do a damn thing for gas prices. At least not for the next 7-10 years or so. Around 2018 gas prices might be a few cents lower, but it essentially does nothing for the average American now or in the long term.
The only beneficiaries of this policy are oil companies. The environmental risks are definitely real, although offshore drilling is a lot cleaner today than it was in the 70’s and 80’s.
Here’s a thought, why don’t we push policies to reduce our oil consumption through energy efficient technologies, and the use of alternative fuels? Why don’t we have an Apollo program to get the majority of cars sold in the US to use hydrogen by 2020?
Opening up more drilling isn’t going to do damn thing for the price of gasoline. We need to move beyond oil.
Last week, The New York Times and the Washington Post had great opinion pieces about anti-intellectualism in the United States.
New York Times: Are Americans Hostile to Knowledge?
Washington Post: The Dumbing of America
The mass media culture of today seems to celebrate idiocy, looking down at knowledge. The education system in the United States is completely broken. Parents, care more about their children’s athletic accomplishments, rather than academic pursuits.
At the same time, everybody and their brother has a masters degree, while lacking basic high school geography, math, and history fundamentals. Remember when having a graduate degree actually meant something?
Nowhere is the dumbing of America more noticeable, than the state of television news. CNN, the network that once aspired to be the New York Times of Television, has turned in to NY Post. Don’t believe me? Watch 10 minutes of Lou Dobbs.
Critics tend to point an undeserved harsh finger at video games and the Internet. Video games are an easy target, but it reminds me a lot of the anti rock music paranoia of the 50’s and 60’s. Parents and critics are simply afraid of things they don’t understand. Blaming the Internet for anti-intellectualism in the US, is simply dead wrong. The Internet is a tool. It can be used for good, and it can be abused.
There is no single clear cause of the dumbing of America, and there are no easy solutions either. Its a lot like global warming. Its a long-term problem, with long-term solutions. Humans are naturally short-term creatures.
The other day I was asked, “If you think Bush is the worst president in over a century, why don’t you join the democratic party?” My answer was simple, I would not consider joining a party that could potentially nominate Hillary Clinton for president.
Hillary Clinton is the second worst candidate in the entire field of republican and democratic candidates. The only worse candidate is Rudolf Giuliani. What are Hillary’s political achievements? What are her accomplishments as a member of the senate? Voting for the Iraq war and the Patriot act?
Hillary Clinton has a lot in common with George W. Bush. They both supported the invasion of Iraq, and they both got elected to political office because of their last name. Hillary fails the name test.
The name test is really easy. Take the candidate’s last name, and change it. Now ask yourself, would that candidate be in the same position they are today? George W. Bush and Hillary Clinton fail the name test miserably.
Do your country a favor, don’t ever be fooled in to voting for someone because of their last name.
Right now it costs 5,000 miles to upgrade to first class on one leg of a domestic US Airways flight. Beginning in October, that price will jump to 15,000 miles.
US Airways Mileage Changes
Effective October 3, 2007, all one-way upgrades within the contiguous U.S. / Canada / Alaska will require 15,000 miles. All one-way upgrades between the contiguous U.S. / Canada / Alaska and the Caribbean area / Central America / Mexico or Hawaii will require 17,500 miles. All qualifying one-way upgrades between the contiguous U.S. / Canada / Caribbean area / Central America / Hawaii / Alaska / or Mexico and Europe will require 30,000 miles.
Looks like I have yet another reason to stop being a loyal US Airways customer.
500+ People died in attacks yesterday
US soldiers are dying every day. 3700 dead and rising.
How has your life changed? Chances are, your life is really not much different than the day before the ill advised invasion of Iraq. That’s the way the administration, and the defense industry wants it. Screw drafts and tax increases, the way to wage war in the 21st century is to not interrupt the day to day lives of Americans with pesky sacrifices.
21st century battle involves completely insulating the public, so whether its wartime or peacetime, they shouldn’t be able to tell the difference. That way, its easy to con the public in to allowing the next voluntary war. Just keep the people scared, keep giving a blank check to defense conglomerates, and add the bill to the deficit.
God Bless America!
So the surge is not going well, so what does Bush do? Bush attempts to connect the Iraq war to Al Qaeda. He is using the same lie that got the US in this Iraq mess in the first place.
Al Qaeda in Iraq is a group of terrorists who align themselves with the views of Al Qaeda, it has nothing to with the command and control structure of the real Al Qaeda. Tomorrow, a group could form calling themselves “Republicans in Iraq,” because they align themselves with the views of the Republican party. It doesn’t mean that the RNC chairman in the US has any control over “Republicans in Iraq.”
To proclaim the Al Qaeda in Iraq is Al Qaeda, therefore we should continue occupying Iraq, is complete Insanity.