American Elephants

Yes, Obama is Lying About Ayers by American Elephant

Good new web-ad from the McCain camp. Will they have something like it for TV? Who knows. And Obama is outspending McCain on TV 3 to 1. Its up to all of us to spread the word.

Barack Obama has so many associations with radicals because he is very radical himself.

God, help us!

More Debate: Obama’s Oil Obfuscation by The Elephant's Child

Barack Obama reiterated in the debate two claims that have been standard Democrat obfuscation.  He said “We have 3% of the world’s oil reserves and we use 25% of the world’s oil.  So what that means is that we can’t simply drill our way out of the problem.” Well, to quote Obama again, “Yes we can.”

In part, Obama’s claim is true.  We do use about a quarter of the world’s oil production. With that quarter, we produce around 28% of the world’s goods.

What’s wrong with the claim is the “3% of the world’s oil reserves” part.  This is based on a very old estimate of the world’s reserves, which in America’s case does not include the estimated 200 billion barrels in the oil shale lands of the Bakken Formation — a huge, rich reserve that stretches through Montana and North Dakota.  Nor does it include the 130 billion barrels off our coasts that Congress had placed off limits.  It doesn’t include the Green River Formation in Colorado, Wyoming and Utah, which is estimated to hold 1.2 trillion to 1.8 trillion barrels of shale oil, nor what may exist off the California coast — where we know there are unexplored oil reserves.

Then there is the 10 to 20 billion barrels of easily accessible oil in the ANWR coastal plain, which has been placed off limits by Congress because of spurious pressure from environmental groups.

Estimates are old because Congress has prohibited exploration.  Obama has attempted to legally prevent any exploration with new technology that gives much better estimates of how much oil is there.  And you don’t want to be able to find out how much oil is there because…?  Surpassingly strange.

Obama also hauled out the canard about the 68 million acres that Congress has offered for drilling, but where they haven’t produced oil.  This completely ignores all the work that must be done before drilling can take place, including fighting environmental lawsuits in court.  The earth is not a pincushion where you just stick a drill in and oil spouts out.  Even the slightest amount of actual thought should point out how silly this is.

Obama has been a vocal supporter of ethanol. He’s wrong. We are having food riots and severe hunger in the developing world as a result of putting food crops in our gas tanks.  Here at home, the diversion of farm land to corn grown for ethanol has raised the price of everything from food to wallboard.  The world population is expected to double by 2050, then start declining.  We are going to need all available farmland for the production of food, to prevent forests from being razed for farming. We can’t spare the farmland to fill our gas tanks — it is not efficient fuel in any case.

The environmental left believes or claims to believe that we can just switch to “alternative fuels” like wind, or solar, or geothermal and shut off the petroleum promptly.  Wind is a fraud.  There is wind, but it must always have full-time electricity back-up of gas or coal-fired power plants, simply because power is only produced when the wind blows at the right speed, not when it is not windy.  Without vast taxpayer subsidies  provided by gullible governments, wind power loses all proponents.

In spite of vast investment, wind energy does not yet produce even 3% of our power needs.  Solar can be effective for heating water, but takes too much land and is too inefficient to be a serious source of energy.

Environmentalists (true believers all) are sure that an Apollo Program will do it.  “If we can go to the moon…”  Um, it’s not the same thing.  The moon shot was a complicated engineering feat, but still fairly straightforward.

Finding new sources of energy to power our society is simply not an engineering task alone, and it is not just around the corner.  There are many efforts out there, and all kinds of hype.  Folks wanting funding for their particularl effort are ever so sure that if they just had enough money, miracles would occur.

We need to accept the fact that there is a very large energy gap between the environmentalist hatred for petroleum and their gaseous vision of a green-energy future. At present it is: Oil?, no, dirty!  Natural gas?, no, dirty! Nuclear?, no, dangerous! Hydropower?, no, kills fish! Coal?, no, dirty! Clean coal?, no, still dirty!

But those are the only things that work.  Doesn’t matter. Clean energy: wind, solar, tides, geothermal — repeat. Sigh.

Bottom line: we have enough oil resources to last us for a long time. We have not reached so called “peak oil”.  But we cannot forego the resources we have in a naive wish for a fantasy world.

Did You Know that Bush Called For Reform 17 times in 2008 Alone? by The Elephant's Child

You undoubtedly saw in the news the report that President Bush called for reform of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac 17 times in 2008 alone, didn’t you?  You didn’t? There was a press release from the White House on September 19th.  I only found out through the courtesy of Sweetness & Light.

April, 2001:The Administration’s Fiscal Year 02 budget declares that the size of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac is “a potential problem.” because “financial trouble of a large GSE could cause strong repercussions in financial markets, affecting Federally insured entities and economic activity.”
2002: The President calls for the disclosure and corporate governance principles contained in his 10-point plan for corporate responsibility to apply to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. (OMB Prompt Letter to OFHEO, 5/29/02)
January, 2003: Freddie Mac announces it has to restate financial results for the previous three years.
February: The Office of Federal Housing Enterprise Oversight (OFHEO) releases a report explaining that “although investors perceive an implicit Federal guarantee of [GSE] obligations,” “the government has provided no explicit legal backing for them.” As a consequence, unexpected problems at a GSE could immediately spread into financial sectors beyond the housing market. (“Systemic Risk; Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and the Role of OFHEO,” OFHEO Report, 2/4/03)
September: Fannie Mae discloses SEC Investigation and acknowledges OFHEO’s review found earnings manipulations.
September: Treasury Secretary John Snow testifies before  the House Financial Services Committee to recommend that Congress enact “legislation to create a new Federal agency to regulate and supervise the financial activities of our housing-related government sponsored enterprises” and set prudent and appropriate minimum capital adequacy requirements.
October: Fannie Mae discloses $1.2 billion accounting error. [continue reading]

…and the story continues. Do read it all. That is, if you plan to vote.

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