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Posted at 12:00 AM ET, 12/26/2010

Key to the highway

By Tom Toles

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By Tom Toles  | December 26, 2010; 12:00 AM ET
Categories:  Congress, GOP, Polarization  
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Happy New year all. Perhaps we will all get it together in 2011. Peace love and happiness.


Here's a interesting tidbit regarding that nasty pollutant CO2 that we all need to live.

CO2 EMISSIONS :
1. Respiration Humans, Animals, phytoplankton 43.5 - 52 Gt C/ year
2. Ocean Outgassing (Tropical Areas) 90 - 100 Gt C/year
3. Volcanoes, Soil degassing 0.5 - 2 Gt C/ year
4. Soil Bacteria, Decomposition 50 - 60 Gt C/ year
5. Forest cutting, Forest fires 0.6 - 2.6 Gt C/year
6. Anthropogenic emissions (2005) 7.5 - 7.5 Gt C/year
TOTAL 192 to 224 Gt C/ year


So the total combustion process CO2 emission is less than the range of respiration every year. Combustion accounts for about 3% of the total world CO2 output every year. According to some scientists, water vapor is about 95% of greenhouse gas effect, methane and others about 2%, and CO2 is about 3%. so burning carbon adds about point 1% to the overall greenhouse effect. (3% x 3% = .09% round to .1%) That is Humans contribute 1/1000 to overall greenhouse effect by consuming fossil fuels. I wonder why the IPCC and other scientists reports never mention how much natural CO2 there is compared to combustion CO2.

Posted by: dalyplanet | December 31, 2010 3:17 PM | Report abuse

"government of the people, by the people, for the people..." Socialism, then, plain and simple, from Lincoln's Gettysburg address. There's also the part about "Governments (being) instituted among Men, deriving their just Powers from the Consent of the Governed," from the Declaration of Independence, basically saying that we, the people, have the right to form a government with the sole purpose of doing what is best for all of us.

Again, Socialism.

Funny how, anything that happens to be good for the entire community of citizens is labeled 'Socialism," and then summarily dismissed.

We have socialized police and fire protection, socialized water delivery and sanitation, socialized maintenance of city and state and federal services, socialized subsidy of the construction of electricity distribution, phone, internet, etc., etc. Yet we somehow villianize socialism when it comes to delivering health care when the profit gained by privatization is the real problem at hand and the ONLY reason for skyrocketing costs.

That diversion is a trick of the 20th century second only to the commercialization of bottled water!

Posted by: jonroesler | December 31, 2010 2:08 PM | Report abuse

~~~The right concepts of social organization are cooperation instead of conflict and love instead of hate.dave~~~~

I love you dave :-)
U 2 daly.....
Happy New Year!!

Posted by: bertzel | December 31, 2010 9:32 AM | Report abuse

~~~Binary systems are an integral part of both physical and social systems...~~~dave
yeah...me too...
Posted by: bertzel

My Reply...
Right! We are all an integral part of the reality in which we exist.
We also function through a binary physical/ mental system of thoughts and actions, concepts and responses and right and wrong responses.
Dave (:-)>

Posted by: OckamsRazor | December 30, 2010 8:25 PM | Report abuse

Dave please define "wrong concepts of social organization" for me. Please try to be concise. What are the right concepts of social organization.
Posted by: dalyplanet

My Reply...

Wrong concepts of social organization are concepts that are inconsistent with reality, concepts that prevent the correct solution to problems and/or make the problem worse. It is concepts that ignore human needs and desires. It is concepts based on sociopathic intent or greedy selfishness. Concepts that is self-destructive or self-defeating.

The right concepts of social organization are those concepts that improve life experience, improve the environment and improve people's ability to cope with life.
The right concepts of social organization are cooperation instead of conflict and love instead of hate. It is an inclusive instead of exclusive concept of social organization.
Human civilization is a fragile organization that makes it possible for people to improve their lives through joint effort or destroy each other through war and ignorance.
Dave



Posted by: OckamsRazor | December 30, 2010 8:13 PM | Report abuse

~~~Binary systems are an integral part of both physical and social systems...~~~dave

yeah...me too...

Posted by: bertzel | December 30, 2010 3:25 PM | Report abuse

bertzel I am beginning to wonder what color is the sky in Dave's world.

Simple questions and little exposure here today.

Dave please give some definition to your verbiage.

Posted by: dalyplanet | December 30, 2010 2:48 PM | Report abuse

~~~I appreciate all of the people who have helped me clarify my concepts.dave~~~

Well by all means dave, let's give them credit...who are you referring to? I think they should be named so we all can 'appreciate' them.
I recall asking you about your 'books' and you refused to respond just as you chose to ignore my questions regarding Strong....and I await your response to dalyplanet's comments.

Posted by: bertzel | December 30, 2010 2:39 PM | Report abuse

Dave when you answer my question remember

The simplest explanation that covers all the facts is usually the best. Right?

Posted by: dalyplanet | December 30, 2010 1:22 PM | Report abuse

Dave please define "wrong concepts of social organization" for me. Please try to be concise. What are the right concepts of social organization.

Posted by: dalyplanet | December 30, 2010 12:57 PM | Report abuse

Cop Out.
and a 'self-proclaimed messenger'...right.
Who stated you were a "prophet of doom" dave?
COP OUT.....
Posted by: bertzel

My reply...
I would like to take credit for all of the complex understanding of social organization and the complexities of our physical reality but it would not be possible without the input of what I think is a "Universal Source of Knowledge".
Trying to get my books published and posting my comments is a daunting task.
I appreciate all of the people who have helped me clarify my concepts.
NO COP OUT INTENDED! Please explain what cop out.
Dave

Posted by: OchamsRazor | December 30, 2010 12:51 PM | Report abuse


Dave it is very clear that you belong to the 'one world one government' belief system.
This system has a few elites controlling all aspects of commerce while distributing the goods, services, and money equitably to all the worlds citizens.
Posted by: dalyplanet

My Clarification,
Binary systems are an integral part of both physical and social systems...

Both a people up and a government down system of social management are possible.
Economics is also a binary system with the demand side of economics supporting the supply side of economics.
The people should do the demand side of government and the government should do the supply side of governing.
Capitalism is an essential element of society just as individualism is an essential element of society. There is no reason why we cannot have an efficient system of capitalism that makes individualism possible. It is social organization that provides the capacity for quality lifestyles, a quality environment and a quality society.
Without cooperation, society becomes chaotic and self-destructive.
We have the technology and the resources to do the impossible yet because of in-fighting and wrong concepts of social organization, we are doing self-destruct.
What a pity.
May God have mercy on our souls.
Dave

Posted by: OchamsRazor | December 30, 2010 12:19 PM | Report abuse

Man you pegged him dalyplanet...
I must say that latenight dave is indeed a strange brew....yet amusing.

Posted by: bertzel | December 30, 2010 11:52 AM | Report abuse

Dave it is very clear that you belong to the 'one world one government' belief system.

This system has a few elites controlling all aspects of commerce while distributing the goods, services, and money equitably to all the worlds citizens. Utopia. Top down government. Karl Marx wrote a book on this type of government.

On the other hand Dave there are many of us that believe that individuals and small government units will be the most responsive to provide the best solution for their local citizens. This was the plan that the US was founded on. Bottom up government. The cold war went on for years regarding the philosophical difference between these two visions.

It is clear to me today that it is not corporations you dislike so intensely but capitalism in general. You would prefer that the fruits of labor or labor itself go to a Benevolent Government to be 'properly distributed' locally or globally as needed. I am opposed to your philosophy.

There is a serious disconnect in any persons thought process who can rail against greedy corporations and 'republicorp' in nearly every post here and then say "My favorite billionaire is Bill Gates. He lives on the Hood canal which is just a few miles away from my house. I have met his Father who is a local lawyer." This company was and is one of the most anti competitive and controlling in the US today. He is deep into politics and has probably paved the streets with gold in your opinion.

It appears that corporate money and influence in politics is a good thing as long as you agree with the politics being supported. Get corporate money out of politics unless it is Democrat corporate money. At least Dave you have given up the code on one more Dem\Lib speak phrase for me.

Posted by: dalyplanet | December 30, 2010 10:40 AM | Report abuse

~~~I am convinced the prophets of doom have to be taken seriously.
Maurice Strong

I find no fault with what I read from the quotes by Maurice Strong.

I agree that we need to be the caretakers of earth and not the reason for its destruction.

I am not a "Prophet of Doom".
I am a messenger of what needs to be done to survive our own destructive nature.
Posted by: OckamsRazor~~~

Cop Out.
and a 'self-proclaimed messenger'...right.
Who stated you were a "prophet of doom" dave?
COP OUT.....

Posted by: bertzel | December 30, 2010 9:17 AM | Report abuse

~~~I am convinced the prophets of doom have to be taken seriously.
Maurice Strong

I find no fault with what I read from the quotes by Maurice Strong.

I agree that we need to be the caretakers of earth and not the reason for its destruction.

I am not a "Prophet of Doom".
I am a messenger of what needs to be done to survive our own destructive nature.
Posted by: OckamsRazor~~~

Cop Out.
and a 'self-proclaimed messenger'...right.
Who stated you were a "prophet of doom" dave?
COP OUT.....

Posted by: bertzel | December 30, 2010 9:09 AM | Report abuse


Dave did you check out any of the the Progressive Billionaires on my short list yet.
Posted by: dalyplanet

My Reply,
Yes I did. I have no problem with progressive Billionaires but I do have a big problem with Sociopathic, greedy and/or anal retentive billionaires.

There is no need to take money away from rich people but they should pay for the government services they receive. Many Billionaires got that way through government giveaways of natural resources.
My favorite billionaire is Bill Gates. He lives on the Hood canal which is just a few miles away from my house. I have met his Father who is a local lawyer. Also, I have first cousins that own gold mines in South Africa.
Personally, I think putting gold in the ground is sinful; it should be used to feed the hungry and improve people's lives.
Governments that restricted the availability of funds needed to support their society are evil.
Dave

Posted by: OckamsRazor | December 30, 2010 2:42 AM | Report abuse

Yeah dave still waiting for a proper response from you....
Posted by: bertzel

I am convinced the prophets of doom have to be taken seriously.
Maurice Strong

I find no fault with what I read from the quotes by Maurice Strong.

I agree that we need to be the caretakers of earth and not the reason for its destruction.

I am not a "Prophet of Doom".
I am a messenger of what needs to be done to survive our own destructive nature.

Posted by: OckamsRazor | December 30, 2010 2:13 AM | Report abuse

Question - What is the difference between a liberal and a puppy?
Answer - A puppy stops whining after it grows up.
Posted by: dalyplanet

Question - What is the difference between an anal retentive conservative and an anal retentive jackass?

Answer - There isn't any difference.

Posted by OchamsRazor


Posted by: OckamsRazor | December 30, 2010 1:34 AM | Report abuse

Dave did you check out any of the the Progressive Billionaires on my short list yet.

Soros is interesting in that he crashed two country's currency. one being jolly old England's pound sterling in i997 breaking the Bank of England. 10 Billion with a B dollar hedge. Caused a recession putting a bunch of commoners on the dole for some time. Spent 23 Million to defeat Bush in 2004. Good rich Progressive.

Posted by: dalyplanet | December 29, 2010 11:14 PM | Report abuse

~~~To Tom Toles,
Proper job Tom;~~~ dave~~~

Proper???? gotta laugh...sorry...ha!

Yeah dave still waiting for a proper response from you....

Posted by: bertzel | December 29, 2010 7:45 PM | Report abuse

Muurice Strong is the thread that connects the dots for me!!!

Posted by: dalyplanet | December 29, 2010 2:04 PM | Report abuse

Waste of time there Daly...when dave hits confrontation he turns tail and runs...just one of my many observations...also been looking into those you mentioned...interesting to say the least....

Posted by: bertzel | December 29, 2010 1:51 PM | Report abuse

Question - What is the difference between a liberal and a puppy?
Answer - A puppy stops whining after it grows up.


Who is republicorp? Dave (Some of your questions are too daft to answer)

Look up Berkshire Hathaway, Warren Buffet owns 20% of the WaPo and 45 major companies outright inc GEICO and Mid America Energy Holdings ( All you AGW acolytes may want to think about this connection)

Bill Gates and Microsoft How much competition did they kill?

Ted Turner and his massive portfolio of media

George Soros hedge funds

Maurice Strong Look him up Creator of the IPCC

Al Gore and his carbon offset scam

Six easy ones to start who may not have the best interests of the American public as their guiding principals. All Progressives.

Posted by: dalyplanet | December 29, 2010 1:43 PM | Report abuse

How much does Republicorp pay you for your posts?
Posted by: OchamsRazor

How much does George Soros and Maurice Strong Al gore and others pay you for yours dave
Posted by: dalyplanet

My Reply...
No one pays me to post. Can I assume that you are paid by Republicorp to post considering the fact that you did not deny that concern?
Dave (:-)>

Posted by: OchamsRazor | December 29, 2010 12:44 PM | Report abuse

One other little thing Dave
A bunch of the absolutly richest corporations are CEO ed by Progressives Libs Democrats I will compile a list for you Berkshire Hathaway is number one ruthless and owns so much its crazy Railroads Insurance manufacture and on Think about it
Posted by: dalyplanet

My Reply...
Would a bunch be two out of thousands?
There are a lot of people who call themselves liberals who are anal retentive sociopaths. There are also people who call themselves conservatives who have spent our nation into oblivion; just like there are lots of people who call themselves Christians who would be happy to Crucify Christ again if he did not go along with their greed and maliciousness.
That is why it is necessary to have laws and a government to make those laws so that the nation has some semblance of justice and equity.
Dave

Posted by: OchamsRazor | December 29, 2010 12:35 PM | Report abuse

One other little thing Dave

A bunch of the absolutly richest corporations are CEO ed by Progressives Libs Democrats I will compile a list for you Berkshire Hathaway is number one ruthless and owns so much its crazy Railroads Insurance manufacture and on Think about it

Posted by: dalyplanet | December 28, 2010 9:46 PM | Report abuse

~~~Decouple health insurance from your employment and it becomes portable.

dalyplanet

What happens to my health insurance group pricing advantage when I decouple from the hundreds in my employer's group? Isn't that the advantage of, well, group insurance? My USAA auto insurance is also cheaper because of that large, specialized group too, right?

Posted by: redhead1990

There are many who believe that health insurers make too much money including myself. If this is the case then you are still paying too much even with the group discount. Imagine how much worse it is for individuals and small employers without the strength of hundreds to negotiate for you. If you could choose from many insurers then competition would reduce the cost of your insurance. Groups would still be able to buy insurance collectively but from hundreds of providers instead of a few. Each state mandates some of what must be insured and these mandates vary a lot between states affecting price. The marketplace does a better job of pricing services than government mandates.

Posted by: dalyplanet | December 28, 2010 8:45 PM | Report abuse

How much does Republicorp pay you for your posts?

Posted by: OchamsRazor

How much does George Soros and Maurice Strong Al gore and others pay you for yours dave

Posted by: dalyplanet | December 28, 2010 8:15 PM | Report abuse

~~any real market conditions to warrant the spectacular rise. Speculators were to blame, dalyplanet~~~

there is always someone there to 'push the button'...

Posted by: bertzel | December 28, 2010 7:42 PM | Report abuse

short attention span this eve...my bad...

~~~~could buy the automobiles they were making. Now there is no reciprocal motivation and people are cutting their own throats by buying foreign products.~~~

Is not the people dave it is the corporations that our beheading us.

Posted by: bertzel | December 28, 2010 7:27 PM | Report abuse

Oh and dave, I have disconnected from the norm, NOT reality. There is a difference

Posted by: bertzel | December 28, 2010 7:22 PM | Report abuse

~~Again; I have no idea who Maurice strong is and I "tell it like it is". You are the person who has disconnected from reality. ~~~

Ok dave google him and get back to me. I've got time...

Posted by: bertzel | December 28, 2010 7:20 PM | Report abuse

anyone care to explain why, the day after the extended tax bill was voted on gas prices took a giant leap??? Not trying to change the subject...dahhh.

Posted by: bertzel | December 28, 2010 7:16 PM | Report abuse

We may get to the point where the only way of saving the world will be for industrial civilization to collapse.
Maurice Strong
bertzel

Perhaps it is the loss of individual responsibility and rise of Progressive Government that is gutting our little country?
Posted by: dalyplanet

My reply to Bertzel...
I support our industry. People need wages that are high enough to buy our products so that our industry can thrive and provide jobs. Our economy is an interdependent system. The supply side depends on the demand side and the demand side depends on the supply side. When one fails, so does the other.
Henry Ford figured that a long time ago and paid his workers enough so that they could buy the automobiles they were making. Now there is no reciprocal motivation and people are cutting their own throats by buying foreign products.
Again; I have no idea who Maurice strong is and I "tell it like it is". You are the person who has disconnected from reality.

My reply to dailyplanet...
The problem is that the government has sold out to Repulicorp and the working people can no longer support their industry, their government or their lifestyles.
Without a progressive government, we will have a crappy society, chaos and desperation.
How much does Republicorp pay you for your posts?

Posted by: OchamsRazor | December 28, 2010 7:13 PM | Report abuse

~~~Decouple health insurance from your employment and it becomes portable.

dalyplanet

What happens to my health insurance group pricing advantage when I decouple from the hundreds in my employer's group? Isn't that the advantage of, well, group insurance? My USAA auto insurance is also cheaper because of that large, specialized group too, right?

Posted by: redhead1990 | December 28, 2010 6:54 PM | Report abuse

bertzel

Your continued reference to Maurice Strong has been educational. Our current recession started with a nearly doubling of energy prices\commodities without any real market conditions to warrant the spectacular rise. Speculators were to blame, but Mr. Strong has a lot of influential friends, money, and an agenda that is 25 years in executing.

Posted by: dalyplanet | December 28, 2010 4:50 PM | Report abuse

I can put my money in any bank I choose nationwide but need to be insured by a Minnesota health plan\insurance provider in MN.

Legislators still write and pass the laws that prevent competition. (I know about lobbies)

I believe Health care plans\insurance is highly profitable BECAUSE of government intervention not in spite of it.

A single payer government run health insurance pool is Socialism. Having many health plans available will reduce the cost of medicine and keep quality high in the US. Write your legislators demanding more choice in Health Insurance plans.


Decouple your health insurance from your job. Your employer does not buy your auto, life, or home insurance for you, why do they buy your health insurance. Employer based health insurance discriminates against self employed or not employed persons. Decouple health insurance from your employment and it becomes portable.

Posted by: dalyplanet | December 28, 2010 4:31 PM | Report abuse

We might want to keep in mind that, it is neither citizens not citizens groups which make it difficult (or impossible) to incorporate new insurance companies, credit unions or banks. Rather, it is the existing insurance companies, credit unions and banks which write the legislation making it difficult (or impossible) to incorporate new businesses with which they would be forced to compete.

"Stop competition at its source, and you need not ever deal with it," is their motto, and it works quite well for them.

Threat of Socialism ever taking hold in this country? Fat chance. We discourage competitive startups by otehr businesses; never mind us citizens.

Posted by: jonroesler | December 28, 2010 3:37 PM | Report abuse

dalyplanet...smiles to you...

Posted by: bertzel | December 28, 2010 3:05 PM | Report abuse

~~~My Reply...
Regarding Maurice Strong; you are right, the name does not ring a bell or toot a flutal. I have a problem with connecting names with context. Please fill me in~~~

I do not believe you. If I happen to be wrong(and I doubt it) google the man and fill me in....the similarities are 'intriguing' to say the least...
And dave you have already tooted your own horn. By the way...a little bit of honesty goes a long way...lies and deceit shorten the journey.

Posted by: bertzel | December 28, 2010 3:02 PM | Report abuse

We may get to the point where the only way of saving the world will be for industrial civilization to collapse.

Maurice Strong

bertzel

Perhaps it is the loss of individual responsibility and rise of Progressive Government that is gutting our little country?

Posted by: dalyplanet | December 28, 2010 1:09 PM | Report abuse

By the way dave…you never did respond to my question regarding Maurice Strong… or was your lack of response your answer?
Posted by: bertzel

My Reply...
Regarding Maurice Strong; you are right, the name does not ring a bell or toot a flutal. I have a problem with connecting names with context. Please fill me in.
On the subject of pessimism...
I understand that it will take no small miracle to survive our present dilemma.
I am only a "voice in the wilderness".
I just hope "they" do not shot the messenger.
I have spent forty years putting together a four volume book on concepts for the development of a best possible world society.
I still need to get three of the books published and the first book, I published myself.
It is very possible that my first book influenced China's great capitalist success. I gave out copies of my book when I went to ten universities in China with an American Philosophical Association group of philosophers.
I have sent my first book to many important people and organizations and have gotten cordial replies at best.
While others were enjoying the fruits of our prosperity at the time, I was doing research and studies to but together a comprehensive high-tech best possible system of social organization based on the history of civilization and the best possible intelligencia. What I did is way beyond my normal intelligence and was the verification of concepts that came to me.
My theory on my source is that there is a universal source of intelligence that people sometimes key in on.
At the present time we need a plan and we need to work that plan to get us out of a serious threat to civilization.
Our present social systems are inadequate and failing at a rapid rate. This is no fantasy or playful game.
Dave

Posted by: OckamsRazor | December 28, 2010 12:57 PM | Report abuse

bertzel

What do you mean by gutted

loss of direction or destiny or purpose?

loss of religion or rise in secular humanism and accompanying doubt?

loss of industry or manufacturing?

loss of personal identity due to ever present marketing and labeling?

something else?

Posted by: dalyplanet | December 28, 2010 12:53 PM | Report abuse

dave, I am indeed a pessimist. Hard core…not. What is it that I have said that leads you to believe I do not understand reality vs. fantasy? Phantasia …isn’t that a movie?
High-tech, in my opinion, has to do with far more than your example of farming.
Computers, electronic equipment of any kind, comes to mind. And let’s not forget the “control” which comes along with that ‘high-tech’ equipment…farming is actually quite simplistic. Think about it.

While it is possible for ‘things’ to exist, for those same ‘things” to exist simultaneously (go ahead, look it up) for all world- wide is not a reality at this time…we have not yet ‘evolved’ (survival of the fittest?) enough to achieve that “Eden” on our own merit.

My true concern right now has to do with the little country I live in…I have seen the rise and now witness the fall. Our country is being ‘gutted’ and all I hear about is ‘healthcare’, war, global warming and globalization…I am curious as to what part the USA would play in the One for All and All for One scenario…

By the way dave…you never did respond to my question regarding Maurice Strong… or was your lack of response your answer?

Posted by: bertzel | December 28, 2010 11:29 AM | Report abuse

The question I wanted an answer to was what you meant by "high-tech" society...again, simplicity, which you fantasize about and 'high-tech' do not go hand in hand...
Posted by: bertzel

My Reply...
By Jove, I think you do not know the difference between fantasy and reality.
Fantasies are visionary. The word fantasy comes from the Latin word phantasia to imagine or visualize.

dave, explain what you envision this 'Large/high-tech society', to be...
Also, is this what we truly desire?
Posted by: bertzel

You did ask for what I envision did you not?

You must be a hard core pessimist if you think it is impossible to have peace, no war, equity, justice...
We have all of these things just not all during the same time frames or in the same instance.

There is nothing simplistic about a large/high-tech society. It goes beyond the natural capacity of people to supply the demands of a low-tech society.
We would have had massive starvation if it were not for the development of advanced food supply systems. It is people's ability to envision better ways to do things that makes it possible for people to create high-tech societies.
Our problem is that we have high-tech societies with caveman social skills. We have the capacity to destroy the earth several times over and the attitude of a Tasmanian Devil.
If we want to survive our own technology we are going to have to adjust our attitudes to do just as I have envisioned or we will be extinct and that is not debatable.
Dave


Posted by: OckamsRazor | December 28, 2010 12:28 AM | Report abuse

dave...your vision of the future(which I did not ask for per se) is indeed a fantasy...world peace, love, no war, financial equality...a place for everyone and everyone for a place....

The question I wanted an answer to was what you meant by "high-tech" society...again, simplicity, which you fantasize about and 'high-tech' do not go hand in hand...

by the way...I'm just going to ignore your other verbiage dave...I know you are not capable of debate

Posted by: bertzel | December 27, 2010 10:09 PM | Report abuse

Dave, my apologies. Sometimes my ‘third eye’ opens and I have a tendency to view things ‘outside of the box ‘. Clearly I have mistaken you as a worthy debater.
Posted by: bertzel

kriminy Bert; what now?
No apologies are required.
You got what you asked for and as far as I can tell it is all inside the box.
The only thing that is outside the box is your third eye that contains a very large beam that is making you irritable.
I was not debating; I was presenting my visions. What are your visions of the future? Are there only three eyed monsters that enjoy death and destruction?
Maybe you would like to turn life into a survival of the fittest horror movie that would even make Hollywood cringe.
What people desire and what people get is seldom the same thing, there is always compromise. If you expect too much you will never be satisfied.
The greedy with their insatiable appetite are a big problem.
Dave

Posted by: OchamsRazor | December 27, 2010 8:09 PM | Report abuse

My glib comment is distorting the point I am making.

Germany has an excellent system of high quality care that is more reasonably priced than in the US because each person can choose from 1100 insurance pools, competition and tailoring of plans to meet different groups needs providing better value.

In the US each state charters a handful of insurance pools and mandates that perhaps cosmetic surgery or in some cases a sex change operation are part of the insurance requirement. This causes these pools to be expensive to all enrolled. This is part of the per capita medical cost. If we could choose from all state chartered pools and if some new pools were created I would be able to choose a pool that was not including cosmetic surgeries and sex change operations as insured procedures. I would likely pick a major medical loss pool and cover drugs and routine exams out of pocket saving a lot of money.

The point is that Germany has a lot of pools to pick from so that similar care costs less than in the US because of choice and competition.

Posted by: dalyplanet | December 27, 2010 4:03 PM | Report abuse

~~Why bother? To give ourselves the illusion that we're doing something worthwhile to solve the problem? We're not.~~~

There it is, in a nutshell...

Posted by: bertzel | December 27, 2010 3:41 PM | Report abuse

"The downside is that medical costs (in Germany) are high. Health care costs - for doctors, hospital stays and even medicines - are among the most expensive in the world."

As if, we would never in a million years want to spend as much as Germany does per capita on health care.

Oh, wait... We do. Roughly TWICE as much.

--

On legalization, has anybody read the history of the results of Prohibition relative to the cost of alcohol or its societal effects, including providing a way for gangs to make serious money and the escalation of gang violence? Think there might possibly be a connection?

Does anybody seriously believe drugs are any more difficult to obtain now than they were before passage of the Uniform State Narcotic Act in 1932? Or since the "War on Drugs" was officially declared by Nixon in 1971?

Why bother? To give ourselves the illusion that we're doing something worthwhile to solve the problem? We're not.

I say decriminalize ALL drugs, and let nature takes its course, which it is doing regardless. We could spend at least as much on treatment as we are now, and likely more depending on whether the collective "we" thinks treatment is any kind of solution. Zero out what we spend on imprisoning non-violent offenders, and take the profit out of the illegal side of it. No longer romanticized as a way to "rebel against the establishment," drug use would become as boring as using alcohol.

Employers could still require testing; there's no reason we should be required to keep employees who endanger themselves or others by using drugs any more than we are required to keep employees who endanger themselves or others by using alcohol.

Too much government interference in our personal freedoms? Yes, I suppose there is that.

Oh.. Wait, we have that already, too.

Posted by: jonroesler | December 27, 2010 3:21 PM | Report abuse

~~ Plus generating your own power makes you aware of your consumption.~~~

as does reading your bill...

Posted by: bertzel | December 27, 2010 3:20 PM | Report abuse

Not to mention that we can also 'sell' our power 'back' to the energy corporations.
Which is why they are not "on board".

Posted by: bertzel

Amen brother.

This type of decentralized electrical supply has an up hill struggle ahead of it, though it makes the most sense to me. Plus generating your own power makes you aware of your consumption.

Posted by: dalyplanet | December 27, 2010 3:12 PM | Report abuse

pdog

The point with Germany is YOU CAN CHOOSE FROM 1100 INSURANCE POOLS, keeps them honest.

In MN one of the best paid execs ran a NON PROFIT insurance pool (no profit cause he got paid so well, 500 mil) There are only 5 insurance pools to choose from in MN. The state picks one for all its employees making for some fine exec compensation. Open up the process so I can pick my own from a choice of 1100 like Germany and I am sure competition will reduce the cost of my insurance. Add some layer of protection from arbitrary cancellation and here is a plan that works. Choose how much insurance you want like your car.

Posted by: dalyplanet | December 27, 2010 3:00 PM | Report abuse

~~rural areas will eventually be a part of the system. Subsidising private small local power production would be better than giving money to the giant producers like Xcel Energy..dalyplanet~~~

Not to mention that we can also 'sell' our power 'back' to the energy corporations.
Which is why they are not "on board".

Posted by: bertzel | December 27, 2010 2:59 PM | Report abuse

First of all DOG...my comments are not silly....2nd...don't care if you are at work or not....3rd...I do know that POT and Hemp are NOT one in the same which is why I asked YOU why you put them in the same category! Alcohol compared to pot would be one in the same....cost that is...I for one don't want to see a bunch of 'potheads' running around...especially on the job...which you aren't (on the job that is, don't have a clue as to whether or not you have been smoking).

As for war...I am opposed as well...pulling out asap would have dire consequences....

Perhaps you should take the time to read before you spout off....No one asked you to comment...just sayin'.

Posted by: bertzel | December 27, 2010 2:49 PM | Report abuse

Oh come on dayly...that is a lame arguement. Besides, there are very few windturbines in the states so far....also private turbines (for rural areas) can be used...batteries ring a bell for you?

Posted by: bertzel | December 27, 2010 2:25 PM | Report abuse

I do not believe there is enough lead for batteries to make a pile to power NY City for a day or two. This is the problem with wind farms.

Local production and local use is the way to go. Big energy and government interests are not on board with this though today. Private power generation esp. in rural areas will eventually be a part of the system. Subsidising private small local power production would be better than giving money to the giant producers like Xcel Energy.

Posted by: dalyplanet | December 27, 2010 2:40 PM | Report abuse

I don't have the time or energy to keep repsonding to all the ridiculous comments that people throw back in here, so this is it for today.

Germany...all the insurance companies are non-profit. Same goes for the handful of other countries using the Bismarck Model. Yes, it has a few issues, as does any health care model. But everyone is covered, there are no insurance companies making gazillions of dollars for handling money (while denying claims and coverage) and costs are reasonable. We need to take the best of ALL the healthcare models out there, and make one that works here. What we have, doesn't work.

Haven't a clue what bertzel is talking about with regard to legalizing marijuana not saving on law enforcement costs. There are currently millions of people locked up for growing, selling and smoking pot. This would stop immediately after legalization. As far as industrial hemp is concerned, it is illegal for the same reason marijuana is. People seem to be under the false impression that this is a "drug", when it's not. It could be grown for fiber production to make clothes, shoes, baskets, reinforcing fibers, etc. Tis a very versatile little plant, and legalizing its growth, along with that of marijuana, would be an economic boon to the country.

As far as wars, I don't see us pulling out as "turning our backs on" those countries. We never should have been there in the first place. We've sacrified hundreds of BILLIONS of dollars in two useless wars, not to mention the irreplaceable lives and limbs given up. And what do we have to show for it? Countries in which we create more terrorists than we kill. Countries where the civilian populations do NOT want us! Why are we in countries where the people want us out? I call that imperialism. How long do we keep dying and going broke to stop people from trying to get us out of their country. No, I don't think the Taliban is a great bunch of guys. But they would have self-destructed eventually, as most repressive regimes do, had we stayed out. New and unstable countries will always have terrorists trying to kill someone or something they disagree with, and horrible civil wars are a consequence of that. We, as one nation, can't keep trying to be the world's police force. Sometimes, humanitarian aid is the best we can do. Look at our own stupid civil war. How do you think the US would have reacted, let's say, if Spain or some other country invaded the US in 1861 in an effort to try to prevent us from killing each other? Once it was obvious that they weren't welcome, how long do you think they would have stayed? All we need to do is make sure the crazy terrorists that are ALWAYS around, don't start creeping into our land and killing us here. Trying to "get them there before they get us here", only seems to be making more of them.

Okay...although I have the day off, that's all I have time for. Here's hoping for a better world in 2011.

Posted by: PrairieDog60 | December 27, 2010 2:34 PM | Report abuse

Wind is not constant so requires other generation capability on standby. This makes wind be like ethanol, it costs a lot of energy for the energy produced. Figure out how to store and smooth wind power and it may be useful.

Posted by: dalyplanet

Oh come on dayly...that is a lame arguement. Besides, there are very few windturbines in the states so far....also private turbines (for rural areas) can be used...batteries ring a bell for you?

Posted by: bertzel | December 27, 2010 2:25 PM | Report abuse

What would you have to do to cut 40% of your personal energy consumption?
Posted by: dalyplanet


go into a coma? : )

Posted by: bertzel | December 27, 2010 2:20 PM | Report abuse

One power plant in MN provides nearly double the combined output of all midwest wind power currently available. Spending billions to connect this tiny contribution to the east coast grid is penny wise and pound foolish. Wind is not constant so requires other generation capability on standby. This makes wind be like ethanol, it costs a lot of energy for the energy produced. Figure out how to store and smooth wind power and it may be useful.

Posted by: dalyplanet | December 27, 2010 2:20 PM | Report abuse

Dave, my apologies. Sometimes my ‘third eye’ opens and I have a tendency to view things ‘outside of the box ‘. Clearly I have mistaken you as a worthy debater.

Posted by: bertzel | December 27, 2010 2:15 PM | Report abuse

Tiny Germany (compared to the states) has 1100 health insurance pools to choose from.

Posted by: dalyplanet | December 27, 2010 2:03 PM | Report abuse

Dog, as far as I know the model Germany is currently using is facing some major financial issues.

Legalizing marijuana for the purpose of cutting down on law enforcement and prison expenses…PLEASE…ever hear of alcohol??? And why would you place hemp and marijuana in the same category?

Rapid with-draw of all troops currently at war??? What about the consequences…what about the problems we have since created and added to concerning the ‘innocents’ of these countries??? You are ok with ‘turning your back ‘on them?

Where you plan on getting the funds for those agencies you mentioned?

Posted by: bertzel | December 27, 2010 2:02 PM | Report abuse

The German health care system has the reputation of being one of the best in the world. There is an extensive network of hospitals and doctors covering even the remotest areas of Germany.


The downside is that medical costs are high. Health care costs - for doctors, hospital stays and even medicines - are among the most expensive in the world. There is no such thing as "free" treatment in Germany, not even in state hospitals. All care, including emergencies, has to be paid for by you or your health insurance!

Posted by: dalyplanet | December 27, 2010 1:59 PM | Report abuse

Please define, What is a smart grid? How is it different than what is currently used?

Even easier survey, How many Kw of electric do you all use in a year at home.

How will expanding Mass Transit help small towns or rural America save energy. Or suburbia for the matter. Drop you off and walk a mile or two or ten?

What would you have to do to cut 40% of your personal energy consumption?

Posted by: dalyplanet | December 27, 2010 1:54 PM | Report abuse

dalyplanet. You're absolutely right. All the doctors in Germany, Switzerland, Japan, and all the other countries that use some form of the Bismarck model, are all incompetent idiots. *rolling my eyes*

Also, we currently have a powergrid that is not friendly to renewable energy because it doesn't reach into areas where renewable energy can be produced...deserts for solar and plains for wind, for a couple examples. I would not call this "remarkably good".

If you're going to take time to type things in here, give them some thought please.

Posted by: PrairieDog60 | December 27, 2010 1:47 PM | Report abuse

dave, explain what you envision this 'Large/high-tech society', to be...
Also, is this what we truly desire?
Posted by: bertzel

My Vision for the Future...
I envision a world that is user friendly and people who understand the need to cooperate for the common good and provide people's particular needs for quality life experiences.
I envision a government that is dedicated to the best interests of its people.
I envision an economy that is stable and provides the efficient exchange of goods and services that are equitable and just.
I envision a just and equitable justice system that has the power to prevent unfair labor practices, monopolies and profiteering.
I envision the efficient use of our resources and the development of affective problem solving skills.
I envision efficient communication systems and entertainment that promotes social skills and avoids promoting destructive behavior and maliciousness.
I envision support for the family unit and good health for everyone.
I envision an education system that teaches social skills, the constructive use of technology, the facts of life and the value of human compassion.
I envision religion as a personal experience and a force for peace on earth, good will toward men.
Dave

Posted by: OchamsRazor | December 27, 2010 1:18 PM | Report abuse

I think public financing of elections is a good idea, but I think it would be a dangerous thing to allow the current parties to arrange, as they would make it even more nearly-impossible than it already is for a new third-party or independent candidate to run.

Posted by: jhnnywalkr | December 27, 2010 1:06 PM | Report abuse

Remove profit from medicine what do ya get - Dumb Doctors

What would make you think that putting the hand of stupid egotistical pols on our power management will improve anything. Our power grid is remarkably good because of little government intrusion. Electricity and Internet are remarkably adaptive and respond to real needs not mandated wants. Energy production and management is Applied Science (real) not Political Science (fuzzy).

Smart grids,sustainable energy, and mass transit are just buzzwords for doing business as usual and carbon tax is just another government grab of money and power. If you AGW alarmists are serious you will need to start looking at a completely new way of living. Think tele commute, local food, and loose the air conditioning.

Posted by: dalyplanet | December 27, 2010 12:53 PM | Report abuse

Government financed elections? HA! Thats going to improve elections?!! One person, one vote, we all have choices to make. Corporations and Unions are both collections of individuals.

Posted by: dalyplanet | December 27, 2010 12:13 PM | Report abuse

bertzel, here is my top ten list of some things I think congress should vote for that would be good for the nation. See if you can guess how corporate interests would push back hard against each one.

1) A health care system in which profit is removed from the equation as much as possible. Whether this is single-payer "Medicare for all", or something like the Bismarck model Germany uses, I'm not sure. I lean toward the Bismarck model.

2) Restore tax rates on upper income levels to what they were 40 years ago. This would help pay down the deficit in a hurry and ensure that Social Security could remain solvent for decades.

3) Legalization of marijuana and the growing of industrial hemp. This would cut down on law enforcement and prison expenses, and also provide farmers a crop to grow that can be used for countless purposes.

4) Begin the phase-in of a carbon tax, and use the revenue to fund a new electrical grid nationwide, mass transportation projects, research and development for sustainable, renewable energy production.

5) End most farm subsides except those to very small, independent farmers.

6) Rapid withdrawl of all troops from oil-producing nations whose culture does not want us there (yes, this would mean an end to all activitiy in Afghanistan and Iraq).

7) End, to a great extent, the use of private contractors for military and security work.

8) Begin to incorporate instant runoff voting in elections so that third party and independent candidates have a legitimate chance at winning elections (although this is something more controlled on a state level, congress could help move it along).

9) Reinstate Glass-Stegal and other financial regulatory rules and laws designed to prevent what happened in 1929 and in 2008.

10) Better funding and teeth for OSHA, USDA, EPA and other regulatory agencies whose purpose is to protect the environment, consumers and workers.

Posted by: PrairieDog60 | December 27, 2010 11:51 AM | Report abuse

~~~There is only one solution to all this...publically financed elections. As long as wealthy individuals and corporations control votes (and they do), Congress will never do what's best for the nation or its people.~~~~ dog

Again I ask...what do you consider to be best for our nation and peoples??

What do you believe a "smart congress" should vote for??
"tis the season of reflection....

Posted by: bertzel | December 27, 2010 11:07 AM | Report abuse

There is only one solution to all this...publically financed elections. As long as wealthy individuals and corporations control votes (and they do), Congress will never do what's best for the nation or its people. It will always do what's best for getting reelected.

The wealthy control of votes works three ways. 1) Giving more money to candidates that vote the way the donator desires. 2) Witholding money from candidates who don't vote the way the donator wants. 3) Threatening (and following through) to spend loads of money to defeat a candidate that doesn't vote the way the donator wants. As long as advertising and publicity are what gets votes, and the person that buys the most ads or has the biggest and best staff/publicity team, then the person with the most money will win. There have been exceptions to this, of course, but the biggest machine is usually the winner.

Money sways votes. And many of these votes are the votes that will benefit the wealthy donator at the expense of some program, individual or cause that would benefit if the wealthy donor did not get their way. If wealthy donors were all philanthropists and altruistic folks, this wouldn't be a problem. They'd be pushing for the kind of votes that WOULD benefit society. The problem is, most of these wealthy donors, whether individual or corporate, are looking out for their own wealth, and not society as a whole. Oh, they may actually believe that their wealth and the well-being of their monied interests are indeed good for society, but that doesn't make it so.

Publically financed elections may be difficult to establish, and may even be ruled unconstitutional by this Supreme Court, that seems obsessed with the "money = free speech" philosophy. But unless the wealthy and corporations stop controlling elections, I don't see any resolution to the stupidity of how congress often votes.

Posted by: PrairieDog60 | December 27, 2010 10:54 AM | Report abuse

~~~The first thing that needs to be done is to arrive at an economic system that will support the dynamics of a large/high-tech society. dave~~~~

dave, explain what you envision this 'Large/high-tech society', to be...

Also, is this what we truly desire?


If education becomes the next 'big money maker' and all that the US is good for is the selling of that education where do we see that leading us into the future? What are we educating ourselves for?
What will be it's purpose? What will be the point?
To hope for 'world peace' is such a noble idea, but I don't believe in Santa Claus and we will never 'evolve' into that state of being on our own terms....just sayin'...
besides, high-tech and simplicity do not go hand in hand.

Posted by: bertzel | December 27, 2010 9:36 AM | Report abuse

I pray that we will fight greed and corruption in our capitalistic society, and re-learn the values that made our country great--hard work, honest dealings, compassion, personal responsibility, shared sacrifice, integrity, peace, fairness, and generosity toward the less fortunate. This is my hope for the New Year.
Posted by: insightinc

Posted by OckamsRazor,
Hopefully, we will be able to do all of the above before our social systems arrive at critical mess and go into gridlock.
The first thing that needs to be done is to arrive at an economic system that will support the dynamics of a large/high-tech society.
I know a lot of people fear socialism but socialism is not the problem; it is capitalism that is the problem.
Without sufficient funds from the capital (Washington D.C.), we will become a poverty nation that cannot protect itself let alone fix anything. We will be at the mercy of our enemies.
Courage is meaningless without the wisdom to do what is necessary to avoid self-destruct. Pogo, "We have met the enemy and they are us".
Dave

Posted by: OckamsRazor | December 27, 2010 12:39 AM | Report abuse

ohh and bignoisy...I think those are horses. I never have seen mules move that fast. In fact...I believe they would be the ones standing at the barn door wondering what just happened...

Posted by: bertzel | December 26, 2010 8:07 PM | Report abuse

HA, Toles! Funny 'toons'!
but you forgot about the hay loft and/or silo...just sayin'...or is that in the second 'toon?

Posted by: bertzel | December 26, 2010 8:01 PM | Report abuse

Pelosi is the nag and Hoyer lead easily to water. Ye Haw!

Posted by: bignoisylawnmower | December 26, 2010 6:53 PM | Report abuse

How will we ever get out of this mess? Greed, corruption and a broken system have led us to this place. I don't mean to sound dour during the Christmas Season, but we've managed to put this country on a path to financial ruin with our outrageous spending, expensive wars, Wall Street bailouts, and tax give-aways. Not to mention the old standbys...fraud, waste and abuse. How will we compete with countries like China with their vast investment in infrastructure and education? Can you believe that I'm even writing this? Compete with CHINA! It is astounding that this poor "backward" country holds so much of our debt and is poised to overtake us in a few short decades if we don't get our house in order.

I pray that we will fight greed and corruption in our capitalistic society, and re-learn the values that made our country great--hard work, honest dealings, compassion, personal responsibility, shared sacrifice, integrity, peace, fairness, and generosity toward the less fortunate. This is my hope for the New Year.

Posted by: insightinc | December 26, 2010 1:20 PM | Report abuse

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