American Elephants


Lots of Regulation: Accomplishes Nothing, Nothing at All. by The Elephant's Child

Try to estimate all those policies and programs that our government at all levels has put in place to reduce global temperature so that we don’t suffer from the depredations of global warming or, if you will, global climate disruption.  We have national policies, state policies, county policies and city policies.  There are a lot, and the cheerleader-in-chief is the Environmental Protection Agency.

Obama said, when he secured the nomination, that “this was the moment when the rise of the oceans began to slow and our planet began to heal.” And he said “The science is beyond dispute.  The facts are clear.  Sea levels are rising.  Coastlines are shrinking.  We see record drought, spreading famine, storms that are growing stronger each passing hurricane season (Nov. 17, 2008).

But then Dr. Nils-Axel Mörner, geologist, physicist, one-time expert reviewer for the IPCC, and one of the greatest — if not the greatest— experts on sea levels in the world today announced  at the end of February this year, that contrary to IPCC claims, sea levels are not rising.  He has worked with sea level problems for 40 years in areas all across the world.  But of course the world did not break out in celebration that a big worry was removed.  Why doesn’t anyone celebrate?

Tough new rules proposed by the Environmental Protection Agency restricting greenhouse gas emissions would reduce the global mean temperature by only 0.006 to 0.0015 of a degree Celsius by the year 2100, according to the EPA’s analysis.

As a side effect, these rules would “slow construction nationwide for years.”

Republicans on the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee issued a report last week.  It said that a series of proposed and partially implemented new regulations on industrial boilers, greenhouse gas emitters, and ozone levels will put over 800,000 jobs at risk with little or no environmental benefit.  The Obama administration just can’t stop destroying jobs.

The report’s authors quote the EPA staff to show that greenhouse gas regulations which would require major sources of CO2 to obtain permits and limit their output, could seriously harm the economy if put into place.

The EPA issued a ‘finding’ last Spring that carbon dioxide is a danger to public health, so the EPA is able to regulate automobiles and trucks,  but in effect stationary emitters — factories, schools, office buildings — are now subject to those Clean Air Regulations as well. Please explain to me just how what you exhale can possibly be a danger to public health.  Do we all have to stop exhaling indoors? Can we no longer exhale in a closed situation, like a car?

The benefit of regulating those sources adds up to, by the EPA’s own estimates, as little as less than two thousandths of a degree in temperature reduction in over a century.  This is absurd. All this regulation and rules and policies, and all those employees at the EPA who are churning our this nonsense are accomplishing nothing, nothing at all.

That should make it fairly clear that the purposes of the EPA have nothing much to do with reducing global warming, and have some other ideology as their motivating factor.  Any ideas?

[Pictures of smokestacks are used to say "pollution", yet it's usually just steam].



On the Campaign Trail: Policies Right, People Stupid. by The Elephant's Child

President Obama is out on the campaign trail, complaining, self-pitying, and demanding.  He says the tough economy has made it hard for his supporters to retain their buoyant sense of optimism. “I know there are times when probably it’s hard to recapture that sense of possibility.”  The public is just not thinking clearly.  It is always about him and it’s never about the policy.

The economy had turned sharply down when Obama entered office with a Democrat controlled House of Representatives and a Democrat controlled Senate.  Although Republicans did not have the votes to change any legislation, the president likes to claim that Republicans made a strategic decision to oppose all of his policies.  Since there was nothing Republicans could do to oppose his policies except talk, this is simply whining.  The president views “bipartisanship” as the necessity for everyone to agree with his policies.

Abe Greenwald had a line in his post at Commentary today that got right to the point:

Those opposed to the stimulus were not the reactive “party of no;” they were the party of knowing.

Republicans tried to explain that Keynesian stimulus has never worked in the past.  They tried to explain that incentives matter, and that the “multiplier effect” was a flawed idea.  Greenwald went on to say that the president is getting an education:

Kind of like a school where the $862 billion tuition is picked up by the public and word problems describe real people in real circumstances.  If unemployment is at 7.7 percent and you invest $7 billion of taxpayer money in the study of ant behavior, sage grouse mortality, and corporate travel and the refurbishment of abandoned forts, how many speeches attacking George W. Bush will you have to make before November?

Obama apparently knows that much of his stimulus money was wasted.  David Brooks says that Obama told him a year ago that “there are no shovel-ready projects.”  We don’t know if he has learned anything about health care.  Ms. Sebelius at HHS is busily granting exemptions to McDonald’s, the United Federation of Teachers, and 28 other employers, exposing the unworkability of ObamaCare even before it comes into effect.  The waivers clearly threaten the whole idea of America as a country of laws, not men.  “Hall passes for some, not others,” to return to Greenwald’s analogy.

This bunch of naive economic illiterates is so intent on the ideology — we will have free public health care for everybody and they will be dependent on us and reelect us in perpetuity — that they cannot recognize the actuality staring them in the face.

The Massachusetts plan on which ObamaCare is based has the most expensive insurance premiums in the country.  People wait till they get sick to sign up.  Doctors are fleeing Massachusetts for places where they are better treated.  All those “scare stories” about NHS in the British papers are real life-damaging  or life-ending results of an inevitable sluggish bureaucracy making decisions for and about people who should be making those decisions themselves with their doctors.

Most countries with government-run health care are desperately trying  to find a way to turn medical decisions back to patients and their doctors.  Basic arithmetic should inform that if you insure some 30 million more people it is going to cost more — way more, but this simple calculation is beyond them.

“Obama 2.0″ which the administration is planning now, will involve the same bad policies, but they will explain them better, so that everyone understands how inspirational they are.



If You Want the Economy to Recover, Vote Republican! by American Elephant
October 18, 2010, 11:00 am
Filed under: Capitalism, Economy, News, Politics | Tags: , , , , , ,

More than half of the new jobs created in the past 12 months were in Texas.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 214,000 net new jobs were created in the United States from August 2009 to August 2010. Texas created 119,000 jobs during the same period. If every state in the country had performed as well, we’d have created about 1.5 million jobs nationally during the past year, and maybe “stimulus” wouldn’t be such a dirty word.

What does Austin know that Washington doesn’t? At its simplest: Don’t overtax and -spend, keep regulations to a minimum, avoid letting unions and trial lawyers run riot, and display an enormous neon sign saying, “Open for Business.”

“D” is for Depression, “R” is for Recovery.



“‘So Much for ‘We the People’” by The Elephant's Child

—” We the People” are the central concern of the Constitution” says Thomas Sowell,”as well as its opening words, since it is a Constitution for a self-governing nation.  But “we the people” are treated as an obstacle to circumvent by the current administration in Washington.”

— Ken Langone, co-founder of Home Depot, says “Stop Bashing Business, Mr. President. If we tried to start The Home Depot today, it’s a stone cold certainty that it would never have gotten off the ground….” My question to you was why, during a time when investment and dynamism are so critical to our country, was it necessary to vilify the very people who deliver that growth?”

— Victor Davis Hanson gives ten rules on How to Turn a Recession into a Depression. “It’s hard for a president to turn a recession into a long-term downturn in the United States, given the inherent resiliency of private enterprise and America’s open and free markets.  But if you were to try, you might do something like the following.”

An Annoying Regulation for Every Room in the House, by Ben Lieberman.  President Obama has asked the Department of Energy to come up with new energy standards to raise the price of every appliance in your home, ranging from $67 to $974.  Which may or may not save energy if that is for some reason desirable.  Secretary Chu is delighted, it’s one of his ideals.

Military ballots for members of the military serving overseas were to have been mailed by September 18 according to federal law. Some states like New York received an extension until October 1. Despite these hard deadlines, nearly a third of the states have failed to comply with the law.  In some cases this means our soldiers overseas are going to lose their right to vote.  The DOJ has heard in no uncertain terms from Congress.  Once again an inept Department of Justice, at best — or politics at the DOJ.

Nancy Pelosi’s travel “cost the United States Air Force $2,100,744.59 over a two year period.  Speaker of the House and members of her family and staff took 85 tax-paid trips on military aircraft between March 2, 2009 and June 7, 2010.  “Pelosi’s abusive use of military aircraft demonstrates a shocking lack of regard for the American taxpayer and the men and women who serve in the U.S. Air Force.” said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. I think this is what they mean by “elite.”




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