What do money markets, antiques, gold, corn, wheat, and stocks in companies like Google or Apple have in common? They?re bought by speculators.
And yet speculators, especially in oil, have become the bogeyman of economics. On tomorrow?s I Spy Radio Show (11-noon, kykn.com), we talk with Dr. Daniel Fine about America?s energy resources and energy policy. What role do speculators have in the price of oil?
And find out why those who think high gas prices might hurt Obama?s re-election may be in for a big surprise.
* Listen live on the radio, Saturdays 11-noon (Pacific time) via 1430-AM in the greater Salem Area
(Corvallis to Tigard, Lyons to Grand Ronde)
* Listen live from anywhere in the world via kykn.com (11-noon on Saturdays) via the “listen live” tab up
top of web page
* Download the show after it airs. Just go to the Current Show page. The download link becomes active
shortly after noon each Saturday.
Dr. Daniel I. Fine works with the New Mexico Center for Energy Policy. He is a longtime research associate at the Mining and Minerals Resources Institute, MIT. Fine is also a policy adviser on nonconventional oil and gas. He is co-editor of Resource War in 3-D: Dependence, Diplomacy and Defense, and has contributed to Business Week, the Engineering and Mining Journal and the Washington Times. Fine has testified on strategic natural resources before the U.S. Senate committees on Foreign Affairs and Energy and Natural Resources. In this speech, he discusses ?Shale Gas Wars: From Pennsylvania to North Carolina.?
“Has the TEA Party become a GOP Liability?” -Washington Post headline, April 6th, 2012.
First of all, a big thanks to all who R&R’d (Read and recommended, and if that’s not slang on the sites where I post yet, it is now.) my last post. Like most conservatives, I wish the media would do its job, so I wouldn’t have to. I would like to apologize to my wife for the spit-take that occurred when I saw that headline on a friends’ facebook post. (Article here) For a little backstory, my wife diligently saved her money before we got married, and bought our couch and bed for us as a wedding present to me. I spat the coffee I was drinking all over the couch, upon which I am now sleeping until I get the aforementioned beverage out of it. If any of you have a little room in your budget for a radio show host/blogger, I am available. Please send help and prayers to firstname.lastname@example.org. While that request enters the ether, we have other matters at hand.
As a member of the Charleston TEA Party, and a conservative in good standing, I was forced to wonder if there was any legitimacy to the charge. That lasted for all of a few seconds. We have an innate ”distrust reflex” for most everything in media. When Fox News came along, it was a welcome relief just to watch someone try to show our side. Fox News rapidly became the Israel of broadcast journalism. Neighbors fired at it on a daily basis. The rest of its world tried to smear and demean it, and entire hate groups were built around it, like MSNBC and Current TV. In the spirit of Easter, I am going to try to be nice for a minute. Giving WaPo the benfit of the doubt, maybe they are just trying to explore another angle on the election. Maybe, just maybe, Pravda on the Potomac (Can’t take credit for that, Google search…-JK) is trying to give this election a fair shake.
Welcome back. I know you spent a little time doubled over laughing, and I don’t blame you. When I wrote that line, I nearly lost control of certain bodily functions that would have made the coffee spit-take debacle pale in comparison. But I digress, for the last time, I promise. Washington Post presents its standard evidence, which is polling data. Remember how polls are used to shape public opinion, not record it? Check this out:
“A recent Fox News poll showed just 30 percent of Americans had a favorable view of the tea party, compared to 51 percent who viewed it unfavorably.
A recent Washington Post/ABC News poll may be more illustrative, though. It showed Americans were more evenly split on the tea party, with 44 percent supporting it and 43 percent opposing it. But just 15 percent of Americans supported the tea party “strongly,” while many more – 26 percent – were “strongly” opposed to it.
That suggests opposition to the tea party is more strident than the tea party itself, which means the movement may be doing the GOP more harm than good.”
The article then goes on to quote a Democrat strategist who states that the TEA Party has become a dangerous group that no longer reflects the values of the American middle class. That’s a curious observation from the party of Occupy Wall Street, especially when the President has something like a 60-70% disapproval rating on how he’s handled the economy. And in my humble opinion, the President’s approval numbers factor into the whole scheme quite a bit. Follow me on this logical journey, if you will. The President is planning to run against Mitt Romney, the TEA Party, and the Republican Party as one cohesive unit whehter they are or not. We are going to be hit with the “do-nothing Congress”, “GOP Extremism”, and “Republican obstructionism” from all sides, whether the topic is relevant or not. Birth control, anyone? President Obama blamed Republican obtructionism in the pages of Rolling Stone before they even held the House! So in light of a -17% Presidential Approval Index among likely voters (See that here), President Obama’s team has thrown another dart at the Democrat re-election strategy board, hoping it resonates. The problem is, it only has one target: Run against a straw man. “It could have been worse”, “saved jobs”, and “profitable green industry” all spring from this political Narnia where President Obama has done a marvelous job, Obamacare is clearly constitutional, and a bunch of working-class voters in tricorn hats have ruined it all.
It just doesn’t jive. According to Rasmussen, the Tea Party’s approval rating as of November last year was 30%, and the Occupy movement was 37% unfavorable. Remember that Rasmussen polls likely voters. That poll should not exist, if the media is to be believed. Democrat Representatives marched with the Occupy movement, and it was supposed to revitalize the left. However, given the reality on the ground, and the grotesque images and video that turned up during the height of the movement, Occupy should have been called Communists Rallying for American Progressivism. Worse still, the polls on the TEA Party show Republicans view it favorably. And the worst yet? The numbers on the TEA Party bounce around like crazy. They are as nebulous as the group itself. In an attempt to pin it down and define it, the Democrat Party Media Relations Divsion has found itself herding politcal cats, or grasping at shadows. They vacillate from “it doesn’t exist”:
To, ”It’s a dangerous, racist, anti-everything, economic terrorist organization that’s responsible for the failures of the Obama administration and Congress’ bad poll numbers”:
Stupidity like this is actually amusing as can be. This “comprimise” rhetoric leads me to another point, though. Ever since the GOP took over the House in 2010, we have been mercilessly pilloried with the notion of how willing Republicans once were to comprimise. According to left, even as seen in the clip above, we used to lay down our arms and negotiate. Paul Begala wrote a column in The Daily Beast/Newsweek that he longed for a time when Republicans knew their place, and were kept under close watch by strong leaders, who would force them to comprimse when necessary. His ideal Republican: Bob Dole. Then we get drivel about Ronald Reagan raising taxes, and working to comprimise with Democrats. Even the President has jumped in to say Reagan could not win today’s GOP nomination. You know what Mr. President? JFK could not have won a Democrat primary since 1976. But since the Imperial Scribes, not the Emperor, are the ones we are going after in this segment, let’s see what they have to say. From Leonard Pitts Jr. of The Miami Herald, Imperial Idiot of the highest order:
“No, it is the GOP that has abandoned the center and embraced ideological extremism as a virtue. It is telling to hear its candidates use “moderate” as an epithet and argue over who is the most “conservative,” as if the word contained some pixie dust of common sense and moral rectitude. It is sobering to realize that Ronald Reagan, patron saint of modern conservatism, would be unelectable by the standards thereof: He raised taxes and was known to compromise with political opponents — not “enemies” — to get things done.
That was then. His party has since engaged in a 30-year flight from the center that reaches its nadir — at least, let us hope it’s the nadir — in this era of tea party incoherence, faith-based policy, fear mongering and tax pledge tyranny. This era when compromise is both lost art and dirty word and some Americans see other Americans as enemies — an era in which there is something lonely and foregone about pleading with an angry nation that this is not how it is supposed to be.”
You want to see a clear and obvious difference between the character of Reagan and Obama? If Obama had just half the character of Reagan, we would have seen him sign cuts into law, real cuts, at least two times by now. Look at how Reagan handled not having congressional support compared with how Obama has handled it. To quote a famous comic book writer: ‘Nuff said.
And abou this whole “too far to the right” business? Quick, name for me a social welfare program that has been cut. No? Name for me a year when we cut goverment spending. No again? OK, name for me a government agency that has exceeded is budget or risked insolvency. That one was too easy, you say? There’s a reason. When you look at government through that frame, its simple to see why the left says we are moving to the right. There’s a principle known as relative motion. If you walk past someone standing still, and you keep walking, and they keep standing still, the distance between you keeps growing, Only one side has to move to have “motion” between the two. The GOP of the years since Reagan has stood in place, mostly. If it has moved anywhere, it has moved to the left a little (Lindsey Graham). But when seen from the vantage point of a Democrat Party scrambling to introduce us to a National Health Care system, a more progressive tax system, and even seeking to take goverment control of private retirement accounts, it must look like we are moving to the right quite a bit. The notion that any powers not expressly granted to the Federal Goverment are granted to the States or the People (all capitalized on purpose) must seem like whacko Michigan Militia talk. That idea comes from the constitution, where our core position rests. How far has the Democrat Party gone when the heart of the American ethos is considered right wing extremism?
Finally, I have to add this: The TEA Party is starting to look more and more like they were hiding a crystal ball somewhere in their midst. The predictions made about the intrusion of government, the destruction of liberty, and the dire economic consequences of this President’s policies all seem like the eerie ramblings of a white-wigged soothsayer that somehow became true. The NDAA? Obamacare? Deficits? The list goes on. And the “do-nothing Congress” has tried to stop a President who does not respect his own constitutional limitations and responsibilities, much less theirs. They have had precious little succes. Liability, in legal terms, is synonymous with culpability and responsibility. The TEA Party sent the Congress to slow the machine, and they have somewhat, but when you are dealing with such an idealogue, culpability and capability do not always align. How do you stop a President that refuses to constrain himself or his signature legislation to the limits of the very document that grants him the Office? How do you stop a President that sees destroying the constitution as keeping the oath he took upon inauguration? It isn’t enough to vote a congressional counterbalance in. You must vote him out. That’s why the TEA Party is being framed like this. We are not the GOP’s responsibilty, we are not its liability, and we are not its culpability. We are the reason it has any capability. Time to put the tricorn hat back on and saddle up.
Wherever Joseph Kurt travels, a liberal on horseback rides out ahead of him screaming , “The Liars are coming!”. It never works.
Welcome to Holy Week, Save Jerseyans. Christians celebrate the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ; meanwhile, our Jewish friends commemorate the feast of Passover and their deliverance from bondage.
Governor Chris Christie is celebrating by leading a large “Jersey to Jerusalem Trade Mission.” As the Christie Administration’s press releases accept matter-of-factly, Jerusalem is the traditional capital of Israeli people and their state. Sure, there are Islamic terrorists, European intellectuals and Palestinian politicians who insist otherwise, but American politicians have consistently supported our strongest regional ally’s claim to this sacred city.
Let me clear: Israel’s security is sacrosanct, it is non-negotiable, the Palestinians need a state that is contiguous and cohesive and that allows them to prosper, but any agreement with the Palestinian people must preserve Israel’s identity as a Jewish state, with secure, recognized, defensible borders, and Jerusalem will remain the capital of Israel and it must remain undivided.”
Fast forward to last week when now-President Obama’s foreign policy team put out a press release that referred to Israel and Jerusalem as separate entities (hat tip to Free Beacon). After realizing their so-called error, the State Department’s attempt to “clarify” its mistake succeeded only in compounding it.
Specifically, the Department of State says we’re supposed to leave the fate of Jerusalem up to the endless negotiations with extortions of a failed terrorist state? One that openly calls for the destruction of Israel, cheers the murder of civilians and airs horribly anti-semitic cartoons to brainwash its continually-sacrificed children?
It wasn’t always this way, but the only strong-throated support for Israel out there today is coming from the opposite side of the aisle of President Obama. When Chris Christie had his own chance to address AIPAC in February, he told the crowd to “Please judge me by the enemies I have made. In that same spirit, I would like to say to all of you tonight: I admire Israel for the enemies it has made.” Not very ambiguous! It’s the exact kind of crystal clear leadership we need on the international front.
Mitt Romney‘s campaign has adopted a similar approach, asking HOW peace could be possible in the Middle East when the Obama Administration continues to undermine its own ally:
The administration’s errors extend in other directions as well. President Obama has repeatedly and unilaterally created new preconditions for restarting peace talks. The result has been to encourage Palestinians simply to hold out and wait for Washington to deliver more Israeli concessions on a silver platter. Why, after all, should the Palestinians even negotiate with Israel if the White House is pressuring Israel without extracting any price from the Palestinians in return?”
Christie the Catholic and Romney the Mormon get it, Save Jerseyans.
Barack Obama, meanwhile, continues to openly undermine and double-cross our democratic allies in the Middle East, Eastern Europe and elsewhere. Sure, our enemies are treated with politically correct foolishness, but the advantages of friendship with the United State are getting harder to rationalize for folks with whom we need to maintain a working relationship for our own security interests.
That’s why Election 2012 is the time for all Americans – and especially our Jewish American friends – to wake up and engage these foreign policy issues with grave seriousness. More is at stake this year than our economic well-being – lives are on the line. Our global standing has dropped since January 2009. This President is ballooning the deficit while simultaneously slashing our ability to defend ourselves. His gross weaknesses, radical ideology and stunningly-infantile worldview are a threat to the safety and security of all free peoples. Moreover, his beloved “arab spring” continues to see radical Islamic regimes replace autocratic but secular alternatives that posed a significantly lesser threat to Israel and the U.S., too.
His foreign policy has been an abject disaster.
And remember, folks, that the worst butchers of history like Hitler always told us EXACTLY what they wanted to do. They were only able to engender atrocities because no one took them seriously or had enough courage to act, never because their murderous intentions were less-than-evident. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is of the same mold, and he will soon have two distinct advantages that the Nazis didn’t: (1) operative nuclear weapons and (2) a highly-concentrated target population.
Let’s vote the right way this November and hope it’s not already too late. This Easter Sunday, your Blogger-in-Chief will pray that Holy Week 2013 can be a time to rekindle old alliances and strengthen the bonds between freedom-loving and God-fearing individuals around the world. Equally, I will pray that it won’t be a period of human history marred by renewed anxiety, fear and oppression that could’ve been ameliorated by superior American leadership.
Matt Rooney is a New Jersey attorney, conservative commentator, and the founder & Blogger-in-Chief of New Jersey’s #1 conservative blog, Save Jersey. You can learn more about Matt and the Christie Revolution by visiting today!
President Obama has a habit of making grand-sounding claims that shrink under closer examination. I have previously written of such claims relative to deficit reduction and the cutting of regulations. In both cases, reality was but a shadow of the president’s extravagant language. Recent remarks in Columbus, Ohio continued the tradition as the president talked about the energy needs of this country and what his administration has done to make sure we have an affordable, reliable, and consistent supply. At one point, while ticking off examples of the way he has reduced dependence on foreign oil, increased domestic production and opened new areas to energy exploration, he said, “We’ve added enough oil and gas pipeline to circle the entire Earth and then some.” This is an effective word picture since even in the era when we often hear “the world is getting smaller all the time,” everyone can still maintain a healthy respect for the a tremendous distance a circuit of the earth covers.
But what is the context? The circumference of the earth is about 25,000 miles. So, if we’ve added 25,000 miles of pipeline in the past three and a half years (let’s say 30,000 to take into account President Obama’s “and then some,”) how much existing pipeline was there to begin with? According to a chart on the Department of Transportation website, in 2003 there were 2.3 million miles of existing pipeline. The president’s Pipeline-Around-the-World (and-Then-Some) has added to the total by a whopping 1.3%. In three and a half years. That comes to a .37% increase per year, or about 8,500 miles. Now the word picture becomes a pipeline from Washington DC to somewhere in the Pacific Ocean about 1,000 miles short of Sydney, Australia, in the neighborhood of where the airplane in the TV series Lost went down.
I have emailed the White House requesting the source of the president’s claim, but have not yet heard anything. Perhaps the President is referring to a certain kind of pipeline that would make the progress of the last 42 months seem more significant. Or perhaps this rate of progress in adding pipeline is typical under current environmental and regulatory conditions. Or even better than typical. However, the president’s penchant for vague but impressive sounding delineations of his administration’s accomplishments lead me to believe the portrait he has painted owes a great deal to artistic license. To put the president’s annual pipeline output in perspective, the distance from earth to the moon is about 240,000 miles. When one has made five round-trips to the moon, a flight from Washington DC to Australia that ditches in the Pacific Ocean loses much of its allure.
+Last week Wednesday – the day he received Jeb Bush’s endorsement – Mitt Romney had said the following:
“I keep hearing the president say he’s responsible for keeping the country out of a Great Depression,” Romney said at a town hall in Arbutus, Maryland. “No, no, no, that was President George W. Bush and [then-Treasury Secretary] Hank Paulson.”
Nice to hear Romney give credit to Bush, however, he’s said the contrary only a short while after Obama became president and was extremely popular across a majority of the electorate. In remarks Romney made at the National Republican Senatorial Committee Spring Dinner on 03/31/09 he said the following:
“But I also think it is important for us to nod with the President when he’s right. He will not always be wrong. And he’s done some things that I agree with…. I think it’s a good thing for him to protect our financial system. It took Secretary Geithner a long, long time to figure how he was going to do that, and actually he has zeroed in on the bank rescue plan.”
Admittedly, majority of his speech was “severely conservative” since he was addressing a conservative audience. We know, however, that Mitt can talk conservative talk in the morning and switch to a liberal message several hours later.
Coincidentally, the above comments came on Etch-A-Sketch Day, further highlighting the only consistent thing about Mitt Romney; his inconsistency.