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What Obama should say on climate change

"If not now, when? If not us, who?"

Obama employed that line to great effect in the home stretch of the health-care debate, using it to prick the historical consciences of Dem lawmakers who were skittish about supporting reform. The confluence of historical circumstances could make it an even more effective argument to push the Senate to act on comprehensive climate change legislation.

The new Pew poll shows as clearly as you could want how fertile conditions are for this argument. While it does find strong support for expanded offshore drilling, it also finds that 87 percent of Americans favor energy legislation that would force utilities to produce more from renewable energy sources. And it finds that fully two-thirds, 66 percent, support limits on carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gas emissions.

"If not now, when," has two meanings. First, and most obviously, it's a reference to the political circumstances created by the Gulf spill. While the health care crisis was and is severe, and touches many lives, the Gulf spill is a slow motion disaster that is dramatizing the consequences of previous inaction with a nonstop gusher of disturbing imagery.

If the Gulf crisis isn't enough to prompt action by Congress, what would be enough?

Second, the conditions for passing climate change legislation, as difficult as it looks, are as good in Congress as they may be for a long time to come.

If Republicans make gains in both houses, as seems very possible, the prospects for passing meaningful reform become more remote.

By repeating the mantra of "if not now, when" during the health debate, Obama positioned himself as a kind of historical scold, urging members of Congress to rise above petty and parochial political concerns in order to be part of something that would earn them a place in the legislative history books. I don't know whether it would be enough to move individual Senators, but the argument on its face would arguably be more historically compelling when applied to climate change.

If not now, when?

By Greg Sargent  |  June 15, 2010; 10:59 AM ET
Categories:  2010 elections , Climate change , Health reform , Senate Dems  
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Next: Sharron Angle floated possibility of armed insurrection

Comments

Proper attribution for "If not now, when?" goes to the Jewish religious leader Hillel, c. 110BCE - 10CE.

Posted by: converse | June 15, 2010 11:12 AM | Report abuse

Thanks, converse. You were/are a regular at TPM, right? You should hang here more often :)

Posted by: Greg Sargent | June 15, 2010 11:20 AM | Report abuse

I think that's a good argument Greg. During the Health Care debate, toward the end especially, he used the idea of "not kicking the can down the road" to bring it home. It wasn't exactly the ideal solution to our insurance and health care woes, but it was a beginning. He could also use "peak oil" as a scientific argument for not waiting on energy legislation and investment in alternative energy sources. I hope he talks about conservation and what we can all do. Too many people don't see their own lack of responsibility in this argument but point their finger at the other guy.

Posted by: lmsinca | June 15, 2010 11:22 AM | Report abuse

Greg: I like what you're saying about Obama and the urgency of the matter. Keep up the great work.

P.S., The link doesn't go the the Pew Poll.

Posted by: wbgonne | June 15, 2010 11:22 AM | Report abuse

I am very hopeful that Obama will lead the transformative change we have needed for decades. But I can't help but mention that it really is sad that there has to be a disaster of this magnitude in order to change our energy policy in the United States of America. It is sad that bitter politicians take advantage of a mismanaged media and poor quality of education in this country to keep us beholden to the disastrous petrochemical industry. I hope mainstream America has finally awakened to the fact that we NEED to do something to get off oil RIGHT NOW. And that the message has sunk in enough such that we NEVER EVER go back to such a stagnant, damaging mindset where we reject progress.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | June 15, 2010 11:23 AM | Report abuse

thx lmsinca and wbgonne -- and link fixed.

Posted by: Greg Sargent | June 15, 2010 11:25 AM | Report abuse

Transformative is the new radical.

Posted by: quarterback1 | June 15, 2010 11:30 AM | Report abuse

If you want to get a sense of how far this country is slipping in an area in which we used to lead, get a copy of the Nation for June 14. There you'll find several articles on how the US has slipped dramatically in education in K-12 in nearly all measurable ways. The statistics are stunning.

We are not investing; we are not putting material and intellectual resources towards this future imperative. The country is so focused on military spending and capital-formation games that we are rotting from the inside.

Same with energy policy. Even a crisis doesn't wake many people up.

I agree Greg, the Prez needs to counter EXACTLY what Cantor said in your morning quote. We DO need major policy precisely because of exigent circumstances. And the reason is that the causes have been there for a long time.

Posted by: BGinCHI | June 15, 2010 11:31 AM | Report abuse

I am very hopeful that Obama will lead the radical change we have needed for decades.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | June 15, 2010 11:31 AM | Report abuse

I think Obama and the Dems should focus on these areas on energy legislation:

Energy independence as it relates to national security.

Environmental issues as they relate to clean air and water, and community sustainability.

Investment in innovations and renewables as a means of economic growth and increases in exportable goods and technology.

I do not deny climate change, but I see tine on the fork as a door-closer, most of the time.

Putting the emphasis on national security, economic viability and clean environment are not topics were there is much controversy.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | June 15, 2010 11:33 AM | Report abuse

That's better.

Posted by: quarterback1 | June 15, 2010 11:33 AM | Report abuse

"That's better" was to Ethan.

Posted by: quarterback1 | June 15, 2010 11:39 AM | Report abuse

Very nice Sue. But it needs to be aggressively legislated, wherein lies the problem. I think Obama will have to go all in to get it done.

Posted by: lmsinca | June 15, 2010 11:39 AM | Report abuse

O/T

No "extremist paintbrush" needed when a GOP candidate for congress describes using LANDMINES on the Mexican border as "an interesting concept."

"Tom Mullins: New Mexico Congressional Candidate Wants Landmines Along U.S.-Mexico Border"

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/06/15/tom-mullins-new-mexico-co_n_612482.html

Posted by: suekzoo1 | June 15, 2010 11:40 AM | Report abuse

Imsinca, I agree on the all-in by Obama. And he should, and NOW.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | June 15, 2010 11:44 AM | Report abuse

I think he should explain why his administration rejected the compelling advice of the experts against a moratorium, and then tried to mislead the country about it.

He should address, among other things, the much greater danger he created of additional spills and accidents by shutting down wells, and the huge economic damage he caused, including the long-term prospect that rigs shut down will be relocated around the world, leaving the U.S. high and dry.

And, again, he should announce that he is commanding the invention or discovery of a new, unlimited and clean energy source.

Posted by: quarterback1 | June 15, 2010 11:54 AM | Report abuse

I'm with Cantor from the previous thread (I take my "marching orders" from the GOP!):

I certainly want the president to speak much more about the current crisis and how we are cleaning it up rather than about future "comprehensive" legislation.

Posted by: sbj3 | June 15, 2010 11:57 AM | Report abuse

"There you'll find several articles on how the US has slipped dramatically in education in K-12 in nearly all measurable ways. The statistics are stunning."

Remarkable how education has suffered under the Department of Education and with ever-increasing money spent on it. Yet the Dems are property of the teachers' unions and the education establisment that has killed education.

"The country is so focused on military spending and capital-formation games that we are rotting from the inside."

National defense is the first priority of the federal government. Defense spending is a minor part of the overall budget. Capital-formation games? Perhaps we should try a tax and regulatory system that is less punitive and less of a drag on investment. But my guess is that is not what you have in mind.

Posted by: quarterback1 | June 15, 2010 12:06 PM | Report abuse

Is anyone watching the House hearing? Why are Republicans such liars? Why is the oil industry ALL they care about? It's literally hard to believe.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | June 15, 2010 12:24 PM | Report abuse


O/T

No "extremist paintbrush" needed when a GOP candidate for congress describes using LANDMINES on the Mexican border as "an interesting concept."

"Tom Mullins: New Mexico Congressional Candidate Wants Landmines Along U.S.-Mexico Border"

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/06/15/tom-mullins-new-mexico-co_n_612482.html

Posted by: suekzoo1 | June 15, 2010 11:40 AM
........................

A link to Rand Paul's own website: He wants to electrocute any men women, and children who attempt to cross the border.


http://www.randpaul2010.com/2010/05/rand-paul-on-illegal-immigration/

"We must get serious about our border security, and I have a concrete plan to do so: My plan includes an underground electric fence, with helicopter stations to respond quickly to breaches of the border. "

Posted by: Liam-still | June 15, 2010 12:29 PM | Report abuse

At some point qb you're going to have to begin posting links to back up your claims. This is from 2001-2008. There's lots of little charts and stuff in there.

* Defense and related programs have grown far faster than any other area of the budget, while domestic discretionary programs have grown at the slowest rates.
* Taking inflation and population into account, the defense/security category has grown 27 times as rapidly as domestic discretionary programs.
* The defense/security category also has grown four times as rapidly as all domestic programs combined — a category that includes Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, the other entitlements, and the domestic discretionary programs.

http://www.cbpp.org/cms/?fa=view&id=125

Posted by: lmsinca | June 15, 2010 12:37 PM | Report abuse

Laim:

"He wants to electrocute any men women, and children who attempt to cross the border."

Actually his primary goal is to stop foreigners from illegally entering the country. One wonders why you and your ilk don't have the same goal.

Posted by: ScottC3 | June 15, 2010 12:38 PM | Report abuse

lmsinca, he's a fraud and liar. Please ignore QB.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | June 15, 2010 12:43 PM | Report abuse

lms:

"This is from 2001-2008."

Has it occurred to you to wonder why they focus on the relative "growth" rather than the absolute size of spending in each?

Even your own link shows that qb is right. In 2008 defense spending made up 29.2% of the budget, while SS and Medicare alone comprised 43.5%. The governemnt spends money on things other than defense by more than a 2 to 1 margin.

Posted by: ScottC3 | June 15, 2010 12:47 PM | Report abuse

I try Ethan, but sometimes I can't just let his claims stand. I was going to do education next, but I'll skip it just to say that the Dept. of Education under Arne Duncan is making huge changes that even some Republicans approve of including Jeb Bush. These include accountability and charter schools. Also, 80% of education funding is state based. Sheesh!!!!!!!

Posted by: lmsinca | June 15, 2010 12:50 PM | Report abuse

I hope that President Obama makes the clean up and economic recovery, along the gulf coast, the main focus of his address.

I would like to see him spell out for the American people, what went wrong, and why we have to go back to square one, with regard to safety issues, before any more off shore oil drilling can be allowed.

I want him to promise to have all current platforms, and all the pipelines that are connected to the seabeds, to be completely examined, by government inspectors, with their own submersible transportation and technology. No government inspectors should have to rely on the oil companies to provide the technical equipment or transportation. Inspections should be on a surprise, unannounced basis. If you tell them you are coming, they will set up some underwater Potemkin Villages for you to see.

BP showed that is how the operate, when they rushed a clean up crew to the beach where President Obama was coming to visit, and as soon as he left, then the clean up crew was removed by BP.


This is not the time for President Obama to go into climate change. It would look like he was just trying to use the man made disaster to further his policy agenda.

The people of the gulf states have an economic and environmental disaster on their hands. I hope President Obama keeps his address focused on their plight, and what must be done, by BP and the Federal Government, to keep the massive oil spill from becoming an enduring human and environmental catastrophe.

This is not the night for discussing climate change. The need for finding alternative energy sources, would be worth laying out, but keep climate change out of the address.

George W. Bush said that the country is addicted to oil. Of course addicts must have their fix, so we have to come up with some alternative fuels, that will ween them off their oil addiction.

KISS.

If President Obama lays out the benefits of cleaner, domestically developed alternative energy supplies, he will not have to even argue about the merits of climate change reports.

We need to ween ourself from oil and energy pollution anyway, regardless of if climate change is man made or not.

The opponents of ending our dependence on oil and dirty coal, want to debate climate change, because the do not want to be seen resisting the development of clean domestic energy supplies.

Never debate on the opposition's terms.

It is: long term energy independence; stupid.

Stay focused on that, and put the Energy Cartel, and their imbecilic Luddite supporters, back on their heels.

Posted by: Liam-still | June 15, 2010 12:59 PM | Report abuse

I realize that Scott, but I think it's pertinent to remind us all of the increase in MIC spending vs. the decrease in other spending. It illustrates once again our love of war over people. Depends on your values I guess. It sort of coincides with 5% of the population controlling 95% of the wealth.

Posted by: lmsinca | June 15, 2010 1:02 PM | Report abuse

They are frauds. They are liars. They are trying to change the subject of this conversation from ENERGY to BUDGET.

We NEED an ENERGY TRANSFORMATION in this country for so many reasons that any suggestion that we should continue to rely on oil as we have is simply laughable.

Meanwhile, I'm watching this House hearing. The Republicans on the panel have NO interest in anything except coddling this industry. It is disgusting how little regard the GOP has for our people, our economy, and our environment.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | June 15, 2010 1:04 PM | Report abuse

And since when is 29.2% a minor part of the federal budget?

Anyway, I'm out for the day, lots of work and a graduation to attend this evening. Hope you'll all write some good comments regarding the speech as I'll miss that and the game. Go Lakers!!!!!

Posted by: lmsinca | June 15, 2010 1:08 PM | Report abuse

@qb1: Defense spending is a minor part of the overall budget.

Defense spending is more than half of the non entitlement (ss and medicare)/non interest spending, including VA benefits and the share of interest from defense spending.

www.whitehouse.gov/omb/budget_fy2009_default/
www.warresisters.org/pages/piechart.htm

Posted by: srw3 | June 15, 2010 1:14 PM | Report abuse

You can forget about climate change legislation this year:

"There aren't enough votes to include climate change rules in a Senate energy bill, a top Democrat said Tuesday.

"Sen. Byron Dorgan (D-N.D.), a senior member of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, dismissed any hopes his colleagues might have of including regulations to clamp down on emissions as part of a comprehensive energy bill this summer.

http://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-room/news/103225-key-dem-says-votes-lacking-to-include-climate-change-in-energy-bill

Posted by: sbj3 | June 15, 2010 1:15 PM | Report abuse

"Go Lakers!!!!!"

The most disagreeable thing you've EVER said!

Posted by: wbgonne | June 15, 2010 1:15 PM | Report abuse

Oil executives admitted at the House hearing that they could not even remotely deal with the amount of oil in a worst-case-scenario disaster.

They also admitted that clean-up technology hasn't improved in 40 years.

They also admitted that BP should have shut down the well when pressure tests showed red flags.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | June 15, 2010 1:24 PM | Report abuse

lmsinca,

"At some point qb you're going to have to begin posting links to back up your claims. This is from 2001-2008. There's lots of little charts and stuff in there."

1. Don't ever link anything from the far-left CBPP if you want credibility or at least want to persuade me of anything.

2. Don't hand me this garbage "at some point." I have linked INNUMERABLE sources to prove INNUMERABLE points. Just ask Ethan. That's why he is so mad.

3. Funnily enough, your own link to the CBPP page PROVES the very point I made. Did you notice that? Did you notice that all the tables there show that defense is a minor part of the overall budget?

Now, I realize the CBPP is always hard at work to undermine the country by twisting and distorting statistics to best serve their radical agenda of disarmament and Europeanization, but in this case even their effort to show that defense grew under Bush still proves the very point I made.

Next time, I hope you'll read more carefully before making false accusations.

Posted by: quarterback1 | June 15, 2010 1:27 PM | Report abuse

Correction: Defense spending is about half, not more than half of discretionary spending.

Its inaccurate to compare defense spending with mandatory spending (debt interest payments) and social security and medicare which have their own funding sources (for now). With those out of the picture, defense spending is about half of all discretionary spending, more than all of our European allies, China and Russia combined. So in terms of % of federal income taxes, Defense is by far the largest federal outlay.

Posted by: srw3 | June 15, 2010 1:27 PM | Report abuse

"Anyway, I'm out for the day, lots of work and a graduation to attend this evening."

Way to hit and run. Unfortunately, you struck out.

Posted by: quarterback1 | June 15, 2010 1:30 PM | Report abuse

Slave Sargent:
""If not now, when? If not us, who?""

Wow, the Hive Mind really HAS run out of ideas!

The Alleged Hawaiian not two years into his show, and they're already into reruns.

Now, should he deliver this line before or after performing his "Angry Bojangles" dance number?

Posted by: Bilgeman | June 15, 2010 1:32 PM | Report abuse

@qb1: Did you notice that all the tables there show that defense is a minor part of the overall budget?

24% is 1/4 of all spending(including VA benefits and the portion interest on the debt attributable to defense spending), the largest single expenditure besides entitlements, not minor. When looking at discretionary spending which is more representative of where federal income tax dollars go, it is closer to 50%.

Posted by: srw3 | June 15, 2010 1:32 PM | Report abuse

srw,

No, it isn't inaccurate to count the whole budget. You can't run that left-wing baloney on me.

Don't cite the war resistors' site if you want credibility.

We still spend less than 30% of what we spend on defense.

And, sorry, lmsinca, that is a minor part of the overall, particularly given that it is the single highest constitutional priority for the federal government.

Posted by: quarterback1 | June 15, 2010 1:33 PM | Report abuse

"here aren't enough votes to include climate change rules in a Senate energy bill, a top Democrat said Tuesday.

"Sen. Byron Dorgan (D-N.D.), a senior member of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, dismissed any hopes his colleagues might have of including regulations to clamp down on emissions as part of a comprehensive energy bill this summer."

Fine. Then the EPA is duty-bound to follow the mandate given them by SCOTUS.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | June 15, 2010 1:34 PM | Report abuse

For those complaining about military spending:

"President Barack Obama on Tuesday said he is “mobilizing the greatest military in the world” to combat the Gulf oil spill."

Posted by: sbj3 | June 15, 2010 1:35 PM | Report abuse

"They are frauds. They are liars. They are trying to change the subject of this conversation from ENERGY to BUDGET."

I realize you are bitter and angry -- I presume still at having been proven wrong about OPA -- but I also assume that by "They" you mean BGinCHI, since he is the one who brought up the defense budget, arguing that it is too big and takes money from . . . something that would solve our energy needs.

You shouldn't call him names like that.

Posted by: quarterback1 | June 15, 2010 1:36 PM | Report abuse

Here's a great idea -- if you exclude EVERYTHING except defense, then defense is 100% of the budget.


Clearly, we are militarily obsessed. Disarm and our enemies will become our friends. AND we'll be energy independent.

Posted by: quarterback1 | June 15, 2010 1:40 PM | Report abuse

QB has now totally changed the subject. Great job all.

It's not like there's an important House hearing going on that is germane to the issue of the thread.

The fact that we cannot even have a decent conversation about energy on this blog is illustrative of how thoroughly we are addicted and how thoroughly we have -- HAPPILY -- turned over the keys of the country over to multinational extractive corporations.

We get what we deserve on energy.

Frankly, we deserve this disaster. And we deserve another one after it. And another one after that. The American public deserves to be DUNKED in oil.

It's pathetic.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | June 15, 2010 1:40 PM | Report abuse

Slave Ethan overcomes his medication and "breaks on through to the Other Side":

"We NEED an ENERGY TRANSFORMATION in this country for so many reasons that any suggestion that we should continue to rely on oil as we have is simply laughable"

An ENERGY TRANSFORMATION?

Captain...she can't. take. much more of this!

We'll get right on looking for that Dilithium Crystal mine.

Meanwhile, you can power that automobile that you don't own with unicorn farts,(I reckon you can bungee-cord the critter to your hood until the ENERGY TRANSFORMATION happens...don't mind his wailing, it doesn't really hurt him all that much).

Posted by: Bilgeman | June 15, 2010 1:43 PM | Report abuse

@qb1: No, it isn't inaccurate to count the whole budget. You can't run that left-wing baloney on me.

Discretionary spending is the correct denominator when calculating the amount we spend from federal income taxes on defense. Social security and medicare are self funding, with their own income streams. When general revenues start paying for these programs, then the % of money coming from general revenues can be added to the total on discretionary spending, since we don't have to continue benefits at current levels + inflation. You can take your right wing baloney and eat it.

"We still spend less than 30% of what we spend on defense." 30% is the single biggest chunk of spending, besides entitlements.

We do spend more that all of our allies and potential adversaries combined!

The numbers used by the WRL come directly from government figures. WRL is explicit in what it includes in defense spending. Unless you want to give examples methodological errors, your criticisms have no credibility.

Posted by: srw3 | June 15, 2010 1:44 PM | Report abuse

All, Sharron Angle very clearly floated possibilty of armed insurrection as a valid response if Congress continues along its current course:

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/plum-line/2010/06/sharron_angle_floated_possibil.html

Posted by: Greg Sargent | June 15, 2010 1:45 PM | Report abuse

lmsinca's nonsequiturs abound today.

"I was going to do education next, but I'll skip it just to say that the Dept. of Education under Arne Duncan is making huge changes that even some Republicans approve of including Jeb Bush."

Which refutes what I said how? Has education improved or worsened since we've had the D of Ed? Yes, that's what I thought.

"These include accountability and charter schools. Also, 80% of education funding is state based. Sheesh!!!!!!!"

Again, which proves what? I said education has worsened while we've had D Ed and increased money spent on ed.

Somewhere, sometime, I'm sure you will come up with a relevant retort. But not yet.

Posted by: quarterback1 | June 15, 2010 1:47 PM | Report abuse

Oil industry execs admit drilling cannot be considered 100% safe. Just like they admitted they could never deal with a disaster of the likes we've seen.

All this despite telling us over and over and over again that drilling is safe.

The oil industry has lied to the American public and Congress for too long.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | June 15, 2010 1:48 PM | Report abuse

Slave Ethan suffers the downswing from his earlier medication-high:

"Frankly, we deserve this disaster. And we deserve another one after it. And another one after that. The American public deserves to be DUNKED in oil. "

Obviously, this is because nobody has waved that there Magic Wand and made the ENERGY TRANSFORMATION happen already.

"The fact that we cannot even have a decent conversation about energy on this blog is illustrative of how thoroughly we are addicted and how thoroughly we have -- HAPPILY -- turned over the keys of the country over to multinational extractive corporations."

You want to hold a decent conversation?

Moonbat, you are the (nominal) human equivalent of a propaganda loudspeaker.

You babble your drivel 24/7, and then you whine about the lack of conversation?

You're crazier than a bedbug in a sleeping bag, fella...you know that?

Posted by: Bilgeman | June 15, 2010 1:49 PM | Report abuse

Slave Ethan the Schizoid Moonbat:
"Oil industry execs admit drilling cannot be considered 100% safe."

Neither is commercial air travel.

"Just like they admitted they could never deal with a disaster of the likes we've seen."

Almost every disaster is unprecedented in its own unique way...so what? The worst accident in aviation history was from 2 747's that collided...while taxiing on the runway at Tenerife.

"All this despite telling us over and over and over again that drilling is safe."

Airline executives say the same thing, and even allow children to fly in their aluminum sky buses of death.

"The oil industry has lied to the American public and Congress for too long."

They weren;t lying to the public, dweebus, but to ninnies like you who insist on being lied to.

Every field of human endeavor entails some kind of risk inherent in it;s practice or its product or both.

But you, from your padded cell, get all bugsy over the oil industry and offshore drilling.


Posted by: Bilgeman | June 15, 2010 1:56 PM | Report abuse

Thank you for proving my point, Racist Slave-master bilgefreak.

We cannot have a decent conversation about energy because of you.

The oil industry has plainly admitted today that they lied to the American people and to Congress that drilling is safe and that they can manage a large spill.

How anyone, including you Racist Slave-master Bilgefreak, can sit here and defend their actions is beyond me.

The FACT remains that oil execs themselves have admitted that they cannot meet their OWN guidelines on safety and environmental preservation.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | June 15, 2010 1:57 PM | Report abuse

"QB has now totally changed the subject. Great job all."

Haha, no, BG brought up budget and military.

I've been happy to talk about energy all along.

In fact, I have repeatedly raised, both directly and ironically, the question of how exactly liberals think that some type of "comprehensive" federal energy legislation is going to magically provide energy independence. What do I mean?

I realize this is difficult for people who have no comprehension of free enterprise rather than government planned economies, but even liberals have to acknowledge that there are and have for decades been unfathomable economic incentives for anyone who can develop or discover the holy grail source of energy independence, or even something less -- just significant source of "clean" energy to replace some of our fossil fuel use.

Billions and billions and billions in incentives. Whoever is the person who, like the Heinlein character, discovers a bottomless "fuel cell" technology -- or as Bilgey says, the dilithium crystal mine -- would be unimaginably rich.

But it hasn't happened. Why? And, more importantly, how is legislation by Captain Kick Ass and his Congressional sidekicks going to change that? How are they going to legislate scientific and technological discovery.

The answer to this is not as simplistic as your knee-jerk reaction I'm sure will be.

Posted by: quarterback1 | June 15, 2010 1:59 PM | Report abuse

srw,

We're all familiar with the Democrat budget shell games you are playing.

You want to count entitlements and payroll taxes when it suits you and not when it doesn't. When taxes are discussed, you liberals insist that payroll taxes are fungible with income taxes and should be graduated. When it comes to looking at the budget, you want to pretend they are separate and different -- except when you are peddling talking points about the supposed "Clinton surplus."

Your tricks are nothing new. Just old Democrat budget Monte Carlo.

War resisters' "analyses" are bogus for just those reasons.

If somone wants to argue about our federal spending priorities and allocations and how they affect our national welfare, the whole budget counts. End or story.

Posted by: quarterback1 | June 15, 2010 2:05 PM | Report abuse

QB, as usual, you offer no substance and only some disingenuous fraudulent argument based on a red herring hypothetical. It's a joke argument, surprise surprise.

The fact is that we have the technology, we have the money to invest, and we have the policy incentives.

If you don't know that, I feel sorry for you in your ignorance. If you do know that and choose to continue to obfuscate and hide behind red herrings, then SHAME ON YOU for damaging our country.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | June 15, 2010 2:08 PM | Report abuse

Ethan sounds more and more like News Reference.

Posted by: quarterback1 | June 15, 2010 2:10 PM | Report abuse

QB sounds more and more like Bilgefreak.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | June 15, 2010 2:12 PM | Report abuse

What you just said, Ethan, is "blah blah blah."

You aren't even able to comprehend the question I raised.

I am not surprised.

But, hey, I look forward to driving my dilithium crystal turbo-warp car.

Posted by: quarterback1 | June 15, 2010 2:13 PM | Report abuse

lms:

"I realize that Scott but I think it's pertinent to remind us all of the increase in MIC spending vs. the decrease in other spending."

Would that it were so, but other spending has decidedly NOT decreased. It has simply increased at a slower rate. Which itself doesn't tell us anything interesting, either.

Suppose you have a monthly family budget of $1,000, 70% of which goes to food, mortgage, utilities, and other essentials, while 30% goes towards non-essentials like entertainment, sports, kids activities, etc. For whatever reason, your budget increases to $1,300, and you increaase your spending on essentials by $160 and on non-essentials by $140. Your non-essential budget has "grown" by almost 50%, while your essential budget has "grown" by merely 23%. So in absolute terms you spent more of your increase on essentials than on non-essentials and you are still spending nearly twice as much on essentials as on non-essentials. But, according to you, we should lament the fact that our non-essential spending "grew" by more than twice the amount of growth in our essential spending, presumably because we care much more about entertaining ourselves than feeding ourselves.

"It illustrates once again our love of war over people."

It illustrates no such thing, and not just because it is absurdly false on its face. And when it comes to such putrid claims, you should speak for yourself and not presume to speak for "us".

"It sort of coincides with 5% of the population controlling 95% of the wealth."

I don't know how it "coincides" with this, but in any event do tell, lms...what is the "correct" ratio of weath "control" to population that you seek? How did you determine this ratio to be "correct"? Are you speaking about population of CA, the US, the world? Does it matter, or should it be the same for all?

I wait with bated breath for your answers.

Posted by: ScottC3 | June 15, 2010 2:17 PM | Report abuse

QB, I understand your question. It is so obviously bogus that it brings into question your ability to form a coherent argument.

The fact is, as I've said, that we have the technology, we have the money to invest, and we have the policy incentives to engage an energy transformation.

Do you disagree with that statement, QB?

None of your garbage insults. Just answer the question. Do you disagree with my statement?

Posted by: Ethan2010 | June 15, 2010 2:22 PM | Report abuse

"The fact is that we have the technology, we have the money to invest, and we have the policy incentives."

I just keep marvelling at how absurd that statement is in so many respects.

"We" already have the technology for clean energy independence.

And "we" have the the money to invest. "We" presumably being the government, which is tens of trillions in the red and climing under Obama.

And "we" already have the "policy incentives."

But, strangely, no dilithium yet. I guess Obama himself needs to work out the tech.

You are utterly detached from reality and reason.

Posted by: quarterback1 | June 15, 2010 2:24 PM | Report abuse

@qb1:You want to count entitlements and payroll taxes when it suits you and not when it doesn't. When taxes are discussed, you liberals insist that payroll taxes are fungible with income taxes and should be graduated. When it comes to looking at the budget, you want to pretend they are separate and different -- except when you are peddling talking points about the supposed "Clinton surplus."

This is just false.

To estimate total tax burden on individuals, it is appropriate to include all of the taxes paid to the feds.

When talking about discretionary spending, it is appropriate to talk about the money that needs to be appropriated (hence discretionary) in the budget.

Whether defense is 50% of discretionary spending or 25% of total spending, it is the single largest discretionary spending item in the budget. It dwarfs any other non entitlement program. We spend orders of magnitude more than our allies or our potential adversaries.

RE: Clinton surplus. Whether you say that clinton created a surplus (not counting ss borrowing) or reduced the deficit (counting ss borrowing), Bush did the exact opposite, just like Reagan did. Reagan, Bush I and Bush II increased the deficit and debt. Clinton reduced it.

Posted by: srw3 | June 15, 2010 2:38 PM | Report abuse

srw:

"Discretionary spending is the correct denominator when calculating the amount we spend from federal income taxes on defense. "

No one (but you) was talking about what is spent out of federal income taxes. The discussion was about what we spend, period. And talking about precentages of what we spend where, the correct denominator is, um, what we spend. Period.

(Nice try, but neither qb nor I are part of the progressive peanut gallery. Such sophism and strawmen are not likely to prove convincing.)

Posted by: ScottC3 | June 15, 2010 2:39 PM | Report abuse

So, the only issue with my statement that you even ATTEMPT to rebut is that we have the money for financial investment. And your response is that we are still suffering from GWB's debt. I agree that we are in debt. But we are also subsidizing failure by handing billions of dollars to the oil industry in subsidies and tax breaks. We should immediately shift that money to investment into renewable energy.

But other than that, you don't rebut the fact that we -- America in the 21st century, the information/technology age -- indeed, have the technology to complete an energy transformation. The reason you don't rebut that statement is that there IS no rebuttal. We simply DO have the technology and that is indisputable.

Of course, likewise, we have a plethora of policy reasons to engage in clean energy. You cannot rebut that part of the comment because there IS no rebuttal.

But since you're posting so prolifically today, QB, I'd like to hear you try to prove that you are right. Go ahead and tell us that we don't have the technology and we don't have the policy rationale to pursue clean energy transformation.

Go ahead. Give us a coherent argument based on provable facts.

Go ahead.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | June 15, 2010 2:43 PM | Report abuse

"None of your garbage insults."

You mean like these?

"lmsinca, he's a fraud and liar. Please ignore QB."

"If you don't know that, I feel sorry for you in your ignorance. If you do know that and choose to continue to obfuscate and hide behind red herrings, then SHAME ON YOU for damaging our country."

Oh, wait that was you again insulting me.

I already told you above that your statement is absurd. And it is.

If "we" had the technology, the money, and the policy incentives (whatever his even means), we would have the dilithium crystals.

How is the government going to legislate the existence of a new energy source?

You don't seriously think a patchwork of windmills, solar panels, and compost is going to make oil obsolete, do you?

Posted by: quarterback1 | June 15, 2010 2:46 PM | Report abuse

qb:

"We're all familiar with the Democrat budget shell games you are playing."

Well, you and I at least.

Posted by: ScottC3 | June 15, 2010 2:48 PM | Report abuse

Go ahead, QB, go ahead and prove to us that we don't have the technology.

Go ahead and prove to us that we have no policy reasons.

Go ahead. I'm ready for a rational critique based on FACTS and not fraudulent red herrings like "dilithium crystals."

Ready when you are. Go ahead.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | June 15, 2010 2:49 PM | Report abuse

Ethan,

"And your response is that we are still suffering from GWB's debt."

No, it wasn't. Try honesty sometime.

"But other than that, you don't rebut the fact that we -- America in the 21st century, the information/technology age -- indeed, have the technology to complete an energy transformation."

Don't ask me to rebut what you have offered no shred of evidence to prove. If we had it, we would be using it -- unless perhaps it is way too expensive. Or unless it is nuclear, which the enviro-fanatics won't allow, either.

"But since you're posting so prolifically today, QB, I'd like to hear you try to prove that you are right. Go ahead and tell us that we don't have the technology and we don't have the policy rationale to pursue clean energy transformation."

Again, some basic logic for you: You are the one making an affirmative claim, and you have to prove it. The negative can't be proved.

So prove -- that's what you demand -- prove that we have the technology and means you claim.

Posted by: quarterback1 | June 15, 2010 2:56 PM | Report abuse

"Ready when you are. Go ahead."

Like I said, you have the burden of proving your claim. We await with bated breath.

So, show me the dilithium!

Posted by: quarterback1 | June 15, 2010 2:58 PM | Report abuse

Scott:

"Well, you and I at least."

I will say in srw's favor that at least that he is capable of holding an adult conversation, so to speak.

Unlike certain other . . . persons.

Posted by: quarterback1 | June 15, 2010 3:01 PM | Report abuse

QB, you won't make that argument, because as I said, you can't.

You're content to mock science, mock research, mock investment.

Your argument is a fraud. YOU are a fraud.

We NEED a clean energy transformation in this country.

We HAVE the technology to bring it on.

We HAVE the funding that we can properly allocate.

We HAVE the policy rationale.

To suggest we do not have these things is simply untrue. We not only have them, but our transitioning off of oil is WAY overdue on many levels.

I am really hoping that Obama not only delivers a great speech, but follows up on the details to really make it happen.

But we ALL need to raise our voices that we want it to happen. We need to take this time and these circumstances and recharge America with a new clean energy commitment. We need to make sure our politicians KNOW FOR A FACT that we will not give up until the job is done.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | June 15, 2010 3:01 PM | Report abuse

News Ref . . . I mean Ethan,

You just said blah blah blah again -- appropriately opening with insults.

And you completely copped out yet again, as you always do.

You do recognize, don't you, that the burden is on you to prove what you affirmatively claim?

So, again, last time, prove what you say. What is the existing technology that renders fossil fuel obsolte?

Show us the dilithium.

Posted by: quarterback1 | June 15, 2010 3:22 PM | Report abuse

QB, it will be a combination of technologies that impact literally every sector of modern life. From buildings and homes, to transportation, to materials. Whether it is a renewable source of energy or a means of using less energy. The combination of all of these things WILL end our reliance on oil.

We simply HAVE the technology to totally remove ourselves from this addiction. We just need to commercialize and mass-produce them where needed. And that requires making sustainability a priority and making investment into cleantech a necessity.

But, I understand your view. You prefer to be beholden to OPEC. And that's fine for you.

It's just not fine for a super-power in the modern era.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | June 15, 2010 3:39 PM | Report abuse

Count me as underwelmed.

A "combination of technologies," huh?

Somehow I knew that is what it would come down to -- just a reassertion of the assertion, with no specifics whatsoever.

I guess i will have to look forward to driving a corncob and windmill-driven wimp car instead of a dilithium crystal turbo.

Here is a tip: It usually doesn't work out to make bold and strident factual claims that you know you can't back up with any specifics.

Posted by: quarterback1 | June 15, 2010 3:51 PM | Report abuse

Fools and Charlatans believe their actions control the weather, while they vote our taxes into the hands of carbon barons, third world dictators and government propaganda machines.

Posted by: ecocampaigner | June 15, 2010 3:57 PM | Report abuse

"Somehow I knew that is what it would come down to -- just a reassertion of the assertion, with no specifics whatsoever."

Somehow I knew that is what it would come down to -- just a reassertion of your mocking of science, mocking of research, and mocking of the concept of investing in the future.

QB, go to NREL:

http://www.nrel.gov

And then tell me about corncobs.

You are either ignorant or a total fraud.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | June 15, 2010 4:22 PM | Report abuse

QB,

Make sure to thoroughly examine the SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY section, including detailed examination of each of these sub-sections:

* Advanced Vehicles & Fuels
* Basic Sciences
* Biomass
* Buildings
* Computational Science
* Concentrating Solar Power
* Electric Infrastructure Systems
* Energy Analysis
* Geothermal
* Hydrogen & Fuel Cells
* Renewable Resource Maps & Data
* Photovoltaics
* Wind

http://www.nrel.gov/science_technology/

Corncobs and windmills, eh? You are a fraud.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | June 15, 2010 4:28 PM | Report abuse

I'm sorry Greg, but your post is meaningless drivel. Obama's going to create a green industry because the polls show that people favor it? How's he going to do that, tap his ruby slippers together, to create a new industry out of energy alternatives that don't exist? You're living in a complete fantasy world.

Posted by: pijacobsen | June 15, 2010 5:31 PM | Report abuse

By the way, Greg, don't feel too bad. There's lots of people living in the same fantasy world as you. Check out Ethan, above, who is going to replace the entire fossil fuel industry with "a combination of technologies" that exist primarily in his imagination. And this is from people who laud themselves as coming from "the reality based community". Which begs the question of which reality they're talking about.

/signed/

Former DOE consultant.

Posted by: pijacobsen | June 15, 2010 5:42 PM | Report abuse

ELECTRIFYING LEADERSHIP!

America needs to move to ELECTRICAL and away from petroleum. The technology exists and it may just be that private industry will have to BY PASS the government since the government is controlled by BIG OIL.

Do the math. Look at the cost of this current GULF disaster. And, for what?

The data is clear that Americans do NOT need imported oil IF the current technology were emplaced for vehicles; then power production in one's backyard that would eliminate the need for COAL powered plants that dump millions of tons of MERCURY into the atmosphere each year.

Think about it.

Posted by: gglenc | June 15, 2010 5:48 PM | Report abuse

Is human activity a substantial cause of global climate change?

Over the 20th century the earth warmed 1-1.4°F and climate changes including more intense heat waves, stronger hurricanes, loss of sea ice, glacier retreat, and more droughts have occurred. As of Apr. 2010, levels of the greenhouse gas CO2 were 389 parts per million – allegedly higher than at any time in the last 650,000 years.

Some people argue that rising levels of human-produced greenhouse gases are warming the planet and causing the climate to change.

Others argue that reported greenhouse gas increases are too small to change the climate, and that 20th century warming has been the result of natural processes such as fluctuations in the sun’s heat and ocean currents.

For some great information on both sides of the debate check out http://climatechange.procon.org

Posted by: jeffrey8 | June 15, 2010 5:50 PM | Report abuse

Fight the Dems to the death on cap n' trade! This is just another "crisis" that Obama is using to further his interests. I think we should wonder if Obama has played some role in causing the spill so that he could get his energy tax passed.

Fight Obama!

Posted by: josephpturner | June 15, 2010 5:51 PM | Report abuse

pijacobsen, that's why you're a FORMER consultant. Your opinions are useless in the 21st century.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | June 15, 2010 6:01 PM | Report abuse

As a good progressive, Greg Sangent seems to be suggesting that, now that Obama and his comrades have created and developed a huge crisis, it's time to fully take advantage of that crisis and insert the last nail in the coffin of the U.S. economy.

If not now, when?! Obama and his comrades have have to push their energy (cap and trade) SCAM now, before people fully wake up and try to defend themselves!

Posted by: AntonioSosa | June 15, 2010 6:03 PM | Report abuse

As a good progressive, Greg Sangent seems to be suggesting that, now that Obama and his comrades have created and developed a huge crisis, it's time to fully take advantage of that crisis and insert the last nail in the coffin of the U.S. economy.

If not now, when?! Obama and his comrades have have to push their energy (cap and trade) SCAM now, before people fully wake up and try to defend themselves!

Posted by: AntonioSosa | June 15, 2010 6:03 PM | Report abuse

You are right, pijacobsen. Unless Greg is being paid to push Obama's ludicrous propaganda, he's living in the fantasy world where Obama and his comrades want the brainwashed population to live.

It’s hard to believe that there are still people who believe in the global warming/climate change fairy tale! Obama and his comrades obviously don’t believe it. They are ready to let companies emit CO2 as long as they pay! Some of the “dumbed down” U.S. population (as per Pravda), however, are ready to kill the economy to “stop global warming”!

When it became evident that the earth was not warming, the hoaxers came out with “climate change,” which made the hoax even more ridiculous! Even the words "climate change" are NONSENSE. By its very nature, climate changes. The climate on earth (and in other planets) has ALWAYS CHANGED and will continue to CHANGE, no matter what we do.

And it’s even more absurd to claim that humans are responsible for climate change! It's like saying "Wet Rain" and then blaming humans for rain being wet! No matter what we do, rain will always be wet! No matter what we do, the climate (on earth and on other planets) will change.

Posted by: AntonioSosa | June 15, 2010 6:11 PM | Report abuse

You are right, pijacobsen. Unless Greg is being paid to push Obama's ludicrous propaganda, he's living in the fantasy world where Obama and his comrades want the brainwashed population to live.

It’s hard to believe that there are still people who believe in the global warming/climate change fairy tale! Obama and his comrades obviously don’t believe it. They are ready to let companies emit CO2 as long as they pay! Some of the “dumbed down” U.S. population (as per Pravda), however, are ready to kill the economy to “stop global warming”!

When it became evident that the earth was not warming, the hoaxers came out with “climate change,” which made the hoax even more ridiculous! Even the words "climate change" are NONSENSE. By its very nature, climate changes. The climate on earth (and in other planets) has ALWAYS CHANGED and will continue to CHANGE, no matter what we do.

And it’s even more absurd to claim that humans are responsible for climate change! It's like saying "Wet Rain" and then blaming humans for rain being wet! No matter what we do, rain will always be wet! No matter what we do, the climate (on earth and on other planets) will change.

Posted by: AntonioSosa | June 15, 2010 6:12 PM | Report abuse

Never let a good crisis go to waste?

Posted by: rmfischer117 | June 15, 2010 6:23 PM | Report abuse

Ethan,

Great argument you have there: Do you actually think that if you insult me enough times it proves something?

Here is the simple truth you are unable to grasp: If any or all of those alternatives were a viable replacement for fossil fuels, they would have replaced them.

Why haven't they? Because they are not technologically and, more importantly, economically viable substitutes. There is no combination of these alternatives and conservation areas (wow, my car would run great on computational science or energy analysis) that can replace fossil fuels without crushing us economically. Period.

Could we be become "energy independent" and use some combination of those alternatives instead, despite its huge impact on our economy and quality of life?

Maybe. The government could just outlaw the internal combustion engine and other uses of oil and coal. Instant energy independence.

That is what you are advocating, only in an amorphous and soft form. That is what Obama meant when he said he wanted to drive up the cost of energy.

And that is why your argument is dishonest. "Energy independence" is not currently possible without devestating economic consequences, not to mention disastrous national security consequences. We do NOT have the technology, because if we did it would have already replaced fossil fuels, and nothing is even close to doing that.

And that's why you are a fanatic and not a reasonable discussant. I don't mock science and research. You make a mockery of it all.

And, btw, biomass = corncobs.

Posted by: quarterback1 | June 15, 2010 6:29 PM | Report abuse

Sargeant is an idiot. Climate change has as much to do with this blown oil well as guns do when some gangbanger stabs someone with a knife, but nanny state commies look for any excuse to push their socialist agenda.

The white-hating racist alien in the WH has proven to be a grand failure at the job for which he was hired, keep the USA safe & solvent. Or perhaps not a failure, but effective in a deliberate attempt to harm the USA. He's looking more like a bonifide traitor with each passing day.

Posted by: LoachDriver | June 15, 2010 6:33 PM | Report abuse

BOzo in the WH lied about healthcare as each passing day confirms. Now you want him to act on his lies about Climate Change too?

The unprecedented incompetence that he and his entire administration has demonstrated in their non-action on the Gulf spill confirms that they don't deserve to be in office.

We hired an inexperienced Community Organizer and that's what we got: someone who knows how to make a fuss; blame others; file some law suits; but nothing more. Unfortunately what we need is a leader who is capable of actually accomplishing something. There are none to be found in Washington. All we have are corrupt Chicago-style Politicians and their wannabes.

BP didn't follow regulations: why wasn't that discovered before we had problems? The federal government netted $2.3 Billion in March 2008 from the lease in which the Deepwater Horizon site was located. That should have paid for some competent federal oversight, but we didn't get it. This site wasn't developed until more than a year into the Obama presidency so there is no one else to blame: and Obama knew before getting into office that there were problems in the Gulf yet he still did nothing to correct it in a year!

The federal government didn't follow long established containment procedures after the well blew: THAT is why oil is spread over hundreds of miles of Gulf coast now.

This administration has refused every offer of help, expertise, and resources offered over the past two months and THAT is why we are no closer to a solution than we were Day One.

BOzo wants to know whose Butt to Kick? He should start with that expert advisor Michael Jackson and start with "The Man in the Mirror".

Obama is grossly incompetent and should be removed from office for this and other criminal acts he has committed (extortion, subornation of our bankruptcy laws, etc.). The only reasons for delay are Biden, Pelosi, and Reid in the wings. They need to be removed first.

Under no circumstances is this clown show of Obama and his incompetent minions to be trusted with any other responsibilities.

Posted by: fbanta | June 15, 2010 6:37 PM | Report abuse

Um how bout no.

Posted by: iacoboni04 | June 15, 2010 7:00 PM | Report abuse

Ethan

Ok, I followed the thread, got to your last post and went to your link. Read a fair amount of it – interesting stuff from reputable contractors (I have done business with Battelle at the Hanford Nuclear Site).

HOWEVER, if you think this in any way supports your position (your repeated claim that “we HAVE the technology”), then I strongly suspect – make that firmly believe – you never read a word of the site you referred us to. This is from a research laboratory that – pretty much by definition – means the work they do is develop new technology. Just in case you are not clear on the subject, that means these technologies do NOT exist. They may be based on well accepted theories and even have some lab based support but they are not existent in any practical sense. So, please stop with the nonsense – repeating something over and over does not actually make it true.

For others in this thread, those debating the nation’s expenditures,

don’t you find the use of the term “discretionary” more than little Newspeakish when it comes defense. I know it is in common usage but really, when the constitution says “provide for the common defense” isn’t reference to the defense budget as discretionary a little bit like calling food and shelter discretionary for an individual? Sure, you can stop paying for it but you are going to suffer and die as a result.

In a related vein, I would like to point out that the USA’s state governments often have no counterparts in other major developed countries in terms of independent taxing and spending capacity. Factoring in spending by the states the military budget drops substantially as a percentage of overall government spending. It is still a bigger slice of the pie than many other countries (but many of them rely on us for their defense).

finally, for the author himself -

you might want to consider this: I could answer in the affirmative on many of the poll questions you cite, taken in the abstract. Try asking the question another way "given the Obama administrations track record in reforming healthcare, ending the recession and handling the oil spill, would you now want the same people to take on environmental issues"? I know what my answer would be.

Posted by: RRD1 | June 15, 2010 7:01 PM | Report abuse

The problem with the "Global Warming" is that it is a great idea which unfortunately does not correspond to the reality.
Why I say it is a great idea? Because if it was true, we would have a really good argument to improve our environment and free our country from the Saudi and other Islamofascists influence.
Then why would I say it is a hoax? Thats' because I studied it very thoroughly for the last 5 years and after reading hundreds of reports and studies I am convinced that the changes in our climate are caused by the changes in the energy output from the Sun, and that the human activity had no significant impact on the global temperatures.

However, perhaps we should keep on lying about it, because cleaning up environment and defeating the from Islamofascists, are both great goals.

Posted by: mpresent | June 15, 2010 7:03 PM | Report abuse

In the last few days several blogs have published the remarkable news that the Egyptian foreign minister disclosed on TV that Mubarak Hussein Obama, in a private conversation with the Egyptian foreign minister told him that his father, and step father were Muslims and that he still is a Muslim. He said that he is sympathetic to Muslims agenda.

Well, most important point on the Muslims agenda is the World Caliphate and United States is the biggest obstacle to that.
If our Hussein Obama indeed is a Muslim, he will strive to destroy the United States from the inside. It seems like he has done a pretty good job already printing money, bailing out everyone and in the process destroying our economy. He is also dismantling our military might. And as does that the clueless leftists applaud.

Posted by: mpresent | June 15, 2010 7:11 PM | Report abuse

Oh, please, the Gulf disaster has no association with "climate change" or "global warming" or whatever is the current buzz phrase.

The Gulf disaster is the result of human error, and it has continued because of the inadequacy of measures to curb such an error. It also has been ignored for the better part of weeks by the Obama administration.

Thanks to Obama, Pelosi, and Reid and their puppet congress, Americans are already being victimized by (1) the so-called "stimulus" that was only dedicated to saving government and union jobs and Pelosi's mice and by (2) the health-reform legislation that doesn't reform anything but will cost trillions while depriving many Americans of the health insurance that Obama assured them they could keep.

If Obama and his confederates try to promote sweeping climate legislation, all hell will break out.

Posted by: judithod | June 15, 2010 7:39 PM | Report abuse

In regard to the budget discussion on this post, here's the percentage breakdown of federal government expenditures for FY2010:

Health = 17%
Education = 16%
Pensions = 15%
Defense = 14%
Welfare = 11%
Remainder = 27%

See http://usgovernmentspending.com/ for verification.

Posted by: judithod | June 15, 2010 7:47 PM | Report abuse

Hey Greg, here's a great idea - "not right now, ffs."

Which part of the economy do you think will benefit from a cap and trade tax regime right now?

Answer: none.

What you're longing for is a sure way to send us deeper into the tank, destroy countless more jobs, skyrocket prices and inflation (and not just energy prices - everyone that consumes energy as a part of their business will have to increase prices), tank the stock market, etc.

Are we really that stupid? Well, "we" are not - unfortunately it appears that many Dems and Obama are, in fact, that stupid. Or perhaps the clear results of such an action are, in fact, what they *want* to occur?

So which is it, Greg - stupid or evil?

Posted by: Midas2000 | June 15, 2010 7:52 PM | Report abuse

Only a progressive would take, what is a tragedy in the gulf and try to turn it into a political circus. These poor folks need the hole plugged and Obama is going to push the Cap & Tax. The data supporting this argument has been riddled with scandal. The movement shows their radical disposition creating riots and blowing up towers. Don't let the facts get in the way just as laws and the truth didn't get in the way during the health care debate Now the truth is coming out on the trash and Obama won't be able to lie his way out of the facts when each individual starts loosing his health care or wait in lines to get inferior treatment. And the costs will go up through the roof. Go back to Chicago Obama and take the rest of your damn progressives with you.

Posted by: psutopgun | June 15, 2010 8:11 PM | Report abuse

Ethan2010 wrote (@QB1):
"You're content to mock science, mock research, mock investment."
==============================
And you're apparently content to 'mock' Logic, Reason. and Rational Argument.
Go figure.

Posted by: OttoDog | June 15, 2010 8:37 PM | Report abuse

Greg's brilliant insights into the left's talking points on renewable energy are only marred by the extremely adverse economics such a shift represents. Not to the yuppies and wealthy among us, of course, just to the financially stressed middle class. In the ordinary elitist oligarchy this wouldn't make any difference, but in a democracy it does.

Wind and solar are renewable alright, but they're also intermittent, which means they can't be used for baseload electrical generating capacity, unless you are prepared to impose random brownouts and blackouts on the population, which Greg may be.

Renewables also cost 4X to 10X conventional coal, gas, nuclear, or oil-fired power, another imposition Greg appears to be prepared to make on our middle class.

Of course, consistant with the rest of progressive agenda, none of these shortcomings will be disclosed to American voters in advance of the left's legislative and PR push. That's democratic transparency sacrificed for the preservation of the progressive dream.

This BS ends, of course in November...

Posted by: Multikultur | June 15, 2010 9:39 PM | Report abuse

Just what America needs. More left wing idiocy that will continue to destroy the US Economy and lose more private sector jobs. Obama is the gift that keeps on giving to the GOP. Can you spell MASSIVE LANDSLIDE of EPIC proportions?

Posted by: dencal26 | June 15, 2010 10:27 PM | Report abuse

mpresent, cap and trade has NOTHING to do with cleaning the environment!

It's a hoax that will give dictatorial powers to Obama and will further enrich his billionaire friends (Gore, Soros, Goldman Sachs, Obama’s Chicago Climate Exchange friends, GE, the United Nations, etc.) -- all at our expense and at the expense of our children and grandchildren.

By destroying our economy, cap and trade will futher destroy our environment. Poor countries can't protect the environment. Just look at Haiti!

Posted by: AntonioSosa | June 15, 2010 10:50 PM | Report abuse

Criminy, you whack jobs never give it a rest.

Posted by: cccarol | June 15, 2010 11:29 PM | Report abuse

Great political speak

If not NOW - When

oh lets just say January 4, 2009

If not US - Who

the Democratically controlled House of Representatives and the Democratically controlled House of Representatives.

Now lets ask gang of 535 why they exempted themselves from ObamaCare?

Posted by: ybnormal1 | June 16, 2010 8:35 AM | Report abuse

Greg, did Axelrod write this for you? because your mental capacity is very limited to understand any facts. Do you get up every morning and worship at the alter of Podesta? When cashing your pay check do you feel any SHAME?

Posted by: DectectiveDick | June 16, 2010 9:35 AM | Report abuse

It's getting old watching him tip-toe around the issue and failing to lead. His Oval Office speech was awful. If not now, indeed. He can't even bring himself to speak the words: Global Warming. How do you solve something that you don't feel you can even talk about?

We're all acting like spoiled children. I rarely find anyone in my life that worries about their children's environmental inheritance. And why should they when they cannot see the effects:
1. Species loss - now 1,000 times the normal rate in the fossil record
2. Ocean acidification killing our reefs
3. Fisheries in collapse
4. Giant dead zones in the oceans due to run off of pesticides and fertilizers
5. 28,000 villages in China lost to desertification in the last 5 years.
6. Depletion of aquifers
7. Oil peaked in the US in 1970 at 10.7M bbl per day. The world is either about to peak or just passed it at 87M bbl/day.

If anyone thinks that our current economic woes are bad, they haven't seen anything yet if we don't pull our heads out of our asses.

We're facing converging catastrophes: global warming and peak oil. Fortunately, both can be solved with the same strategy, conservation and putting a price on carbon. But that's just for openers. Obama is afraid to tell us what, deep down, we all know: we're living an unsustainable lifestyle. Failure to restructure it before the laws of scarcity do will result in a chaotic and destructive transition that none of us will enjoy.

Posted by: sdavis3398 | June 19, 2010 7:52 PM | Report abuse

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