Russian president Vladimir Putin’s power grab and annexation of the Crimea has filled global news headlines as he attempts to reverse what he has called the “greatest geopolitical catastrophe of the twentieth century” – the collapse of the Soviet Union. But it needs to be remembered that this conflict has its deeper roots in two ideas that have plagued the world for over two centuries: nationalism and government interventionism into economic affairs.
Project 21 contained twenty-seven principles warning against a mode of growth that was leading to the extinction of life on earth. As such, Project 21 represented a major step forward in establishing the basic principles that must govern the conduct of nations and peoples towards each other and the Earth to ensure a secure and sustainable future. This plan was developed rather covertly, and due to that lack of transparency, we are still discovering some of the more grievous aspects of their Agenda.
President Obama, Secretary of State John Kerry, and 28 Senate Democrats remain fixated on “dangerous manmade climate change.” In the process, they are ignoring real threats to our living standards and very lives.
Just one year ago, the Wall Street Journal has reported, saboteurs attacked a power substation near San Jose, California. They cut fiber optic cables and shot up 17 transformers, causing them to overheat and fail. Apparently, they wanted to trigger a monumental blackout. Thankfully, grid operators were able to reroute power and avoid blackouts.
A Federal Energy Regulatory Commission official called the attack “purposeful, extremely well planned and executed by professionals who had expert training.” Other utility experts said it could have been a “dress rehearsal” for much bigger operation – one that could take down much of the entire US or even North American electricity grid for weeks, months or even a year. That would have a devastating effect on our economy, living standards and lives. Indeed, many people would likely die, as food, fuel and even safe drinking water become unavailable.
A recent article in The Wall Street Journal took note of what has occurred since the 1990s when some three dozen gray wolves were captured in Canada and transferred to the wilderness of Idaho. According to federal biologists, this was necessary to restore the ecological balance in a region teeming with elk and other creatures on the gray wolf food chain.
The article noted that more than 650 wolves roam the state today according to the Idaho Department of Fish and Game which has been hearing a lot of complaints that the wolves “are wreaking havoc on Idaho’s prized elk and livestock, and prompted the governor’s office to embark on an effort to wipe out three-quarters or more of the population.”
The Ukraine Crises is an example of future events until the United States develops fossil fuel energy production superiority. The Ukraine Crisis–just as the 1973 Oil Embargo– is a great gift to stop the environmental movement’s eliminating fossil fuel production and insistence on relying on solar, wind, ethanol from corn, etc. as energy sources. These renewable energy sources are of no consequence in conduct of foreign policy. Do we want peace and prosperity or “green energy”, poverty, and the possibility of nuclear war?
The drought in California is likely due to natural variations in climate, not human activity, according to Edward Cook, director of the Tree Ring Laboratory at Columbia University’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory. Unfortunately, that has not stopped politicians from blaming human emissions of carbon dioxide for the drought.
For years environmentalists have usurped individual private property rights and thwarted economic development. Now, thanks to Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt, it appears that the job creators may have finally learned something from the extreme tactics of groups, like the Wild Earth Guardians and the Center for Biological Diversity (CBD), which have been using the courts to their advantage by filing lawsuits against the federal government.
On Monday, March 17, on behalf of the state of Oklahoma and the Domestic Energy Producers Alliance (DEPA), Pruitt filed a lawsuit against the federal government, specifically the U.S. Department of the Interior and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS). The lawsuit alleges the “FWS engaged in ‘sue and settle’ tactics when the agency agreed to settle a lawsuit with a national environmental group over the [Endangered Species Act] listing status of several animal species, including the Lesser Prairie Chicken.”
Crony Socialism is, in part, the government cutting special deals for certain companies – at the expense of other companies, and the free market. It is particularly pathetic when companies publicly troll for this treatment. It’s almost as if they’ve given up on actually, you know, trying.
Last week AAA released findings from tests it had run on three models of electric automobiles, and announced that the heavily subsidized vehicles suffer dramatic driving range loss in both cold and hot temperatures.
The news wasn’t new, but apparently the broader media noticed because the pronouncement from the nation’s largest consumer automotive club made it official. NLPC (beginning with a Consumer Reports experience) has reported from time to time on such problems since late 2011. The Tulsa World reported that AAA found driving distance for electric vehicles can be diminished up to 57 percent in extremely cold temperatures, and by one-third in very hot temperatures.
Look, it is a fantasy that a group of legislators in Washington, DC or Albany New York can wave their magic wands and make everybody do what they want. A few years ago, I gave a speech to a group of state legislators in Albany shortly after New York enacted a new law prohibiting the use of hand-held cell phones while driving. In the taxi going from the airport to the venue I noticed that every single car on the highway was violating the 55 MPH speed limit, without exception, and at least a third of the drivers were chatting merrily on their hand-held phones.
NONE OF THIS EVER WORKS!
The U.S. has the greatest energy reserves, coal, oil and natural gas, of any nation in the world, but Obama has been waging a “war on coal”, delaying the construction of the Keystone XL pipeline from Canada, and slow to issue permits to explore for new sources of energy reserves on federal lands. The impact on the economy is incalculable, but it is driving up the cost of energy for everyone and every industry.
If Vladimir Putin had any misgivings about the consequences of invading Ukraine and taking the Crimea, the Obama foreign policy team gave Putin every reason to launch his invasion by soft-peddling the Ukraine crisis and publicly attacking U.S. climate scientists instead.
The American Public Transportation Association (APTA) is out with news of higher transit ridership. APTA President and CEO Michael Melaniphy characterizes the new figures as indicating “a fundamental shift going on in the way we move about our communities.” Others even characterized the results as indicating “shifting consumer preferences.” The data shows either view to be an exaggeration.
The editorial board of the New York Times had it right 27 years ago when it wrote, “The Right Minimum Wage: $0.00.” There’s a virtual consensus among economists that the minimum wage is an idea whose time has passed. Raising the legal minimum price of labor will result in an increase in unemployment and it will be the least skilled workers, those most in need of work, who will be the first to lose jobs and the last to be hired. That would be the tragic unintended consequences if government forces the new law upon businesses.
Ezra Klein recently released a 2-minute clip explaining the need for individual mandates under Obamacare. Man, does that guy talk fast!
Mr. Klein gets most of his explanation about right, with one big exception. He says that a family making $80,000 a year will (eventually) be penalized $2,000 for failing to buy coverage — “less money than health insurance will usually cost you, but you don’t get anything for that money,” he says. Uh, that’s understating things quite a bit. A family insurance policy costs $16,351 according to the most recent employer benefits survey from the Kaiser Family Foundation.
The TSA does not make us perfectly safe. I don’t care much about being x-rayed and patted down, but it is not much more helpful than the old, discarded “security” question about whether I packed my own bag. The U.S. could learn from the Israelis and focus on behavior and likely terrorists.