Includes thoughts and comments about energy needs, resources, conservation and their relationship to politics at home and around the world.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

2010 In Review

The past year has been pivotal for the future of the nation and the World as a whole. Unemployment rates continue to edge upward nationally as well as locally and in many other parts of the World, especially in Europe. Our national debt now exceeds $ 14 Trillion and every day we learn of another state that is headed toward bankrupcy. The problem in most states focuses on government employee and retirement benefit programs. The costs of those programs have risen out of sight under the weight of union demands and the lack of toughness on the part of elected officials.

2011 Outlook

The economic outlook for the new year is positive only in an expected gradual increase in the nation's GDP and a few new jobs. Nothing to really write home about. Potential Presidential candidates are beginning to stir on the GOP side of the aisle among them Mike Huckabee, Sarah Palin, Mitt Romney, Tim Pawlenty and Newt Gingrich. John Thune is likely to join the fray also before party convention time in 2012. Other possibilities no doubt exist which should make it a real horse race before it's over.

Tucson Tragedy

The shooting rampage on January 8, 2011 that took the lives of a Federal Judge, a 9 year-old girl plus four others and wounded Congresswoman Gabby Giffords plus thirteen others reminds us once again that no one is safe around a mad man. No, it wasn't Sarah Palin or Rush Limbaugh or Glen Beck or Sean Hannity or any other conservative talk radio host who did the shooting nor was it the mounting criticism of the Obama administration and it's moving of the country steadily down the road to a collectivist state. It was a very sick minded young man whose illness should have been under treatment starting back when he was a child. And he should never have
been allowed to purchase a gun, given his mental state.

Gun Control

The Tucson event has given rise once again to the rants and raves of those who would repeal the 2d Amendment and disallow private gun ownership. Those are the people who think guns fire by themselves. If their reasoning held true, automobiles should be banned because of the deaths that occur on our highways and airplanes ought to be banned because they sometimes crash and passengers get killed when they do.

The Tucson mad man should have been placed in a treatment program for the mentally ill the first time his abnormal behavior became apparent. Records of people in such programs should be open to gun dealers as a checkpoint in the purchase process and the sale should be denied if the would-be buyer is shown to be mentally ill.

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Mid-Term Elections

Results of the mid-term elections should leave no doubt in anyone's mind that a majority of Americans are fed up with politicians who promise one thing and do another. They're fed up with uncontrolled government spending, high unemployment, unwarranted apologies to foreign countries, the costly new medical program, and the worst President since Carter.

The "entitlement mentality" has become so widespread that the government is afraid to stop extending unemployment compensation benefits to people who have been receiving those benefits for 99 uninterupted weeks. That same government has no qualms about letting the so-called Bush tax cuts die on schedule at the end of the year dispite the likelihood it will further delay small business growth from which more jobs would come.

The next two (2) years will not be easy for the new majority in the House (Republican). With a continuing majority in the Senate , albeit smaller, the Democrats will resist Republican efforts in that body. Having a sizeable majority in the House will give the Republicans a chance to do some good because that body has more control over the nation's purse strings.

America's Future Remains in Doubt

One benefit of the mid-term election results is the fact the progressives now know we are on to their actions to drive us into a socialist/collectivist state. It is now a matter of holding them at bay the next two (2) years, then getting a conservative into the White House and ridding the Congress of still more progressives. Once that's been accomplished we can move on to doing away with the nanny state, reducing the size of government and, along with it, the national debt. We must push for term limits, repeal the 17th amendment and go back to State appointed U.S. Senators, and eliminate federal agencies that do more harm than good. But again, it won't be easy.

The biggest stumbling block to making the needed changes will be the entitlement mentality of a massive segment of our population which feeds the political left and their steady march toward a socialist state. The most recent example is the left's insistance on extending unemployment benefits another 13 months for 2 million who have already been on the dole nearly two (2) years. Included in the latter group are many who claim they can't find a job in their field and refuse to take a job in another field. They would rather take the government dole so they can stay home and watch TV while their job skills rot on the vine. The only way such people will change their attitude is to stop extending their unemployment benefits.

Bush Tax Cuts

The Democrats have worked hard to let the tax cuts George W. Bush successfully promoted in 2001 die as scheduled on December 31, 2010. Their argument is that tax revenues have not offset government spending; that more revenue is needed to meet expenditures included in curremtly approved budgets; and without the return to pre-Bush tax cuts, something like $ 750 billion will be added to the nation's debt over the next 10 years. The Republicans argue that by letting the Bush cuts die, businesses will be discouraged from putting more people to work and an estimated $3 trillion curently sitting on the sidelines will stay there until business owner confidence returns. With the national unemployment rate sitting at 9.8 %, it's likely that letting the Bush cuts stand is the better route to follow.


The number of illegal immigrants in this country continues to increase while Congress continues to sit and do nothing about it. They use our hospital emergency rooms as free health clinics; they attend our public schools but in most instances pay no property taxes supporting those schools; they take jobs at substandard wages thus effectively blocking legal residents from those jobs; and they have become the darlings of liberal/progressive politicians thereby increasing the political support of legal residents from like ethnic backgrounds. Now, a bill called the Dream Act is working its way through Congress which effectively gives amnesty to any illegal who either enters college here or goes into military service for which they can become naturalized citizens.

There was a time when our immigration laws regulated the number of immigrants that could come in legally from any given country under a quota system. Even then, the immigrant was required to show evidence of a promise of employment and/or sponsorship else be turned away. We need to return to such a system but, at the same time, prevent further illegal entry at our borders.