American Elephants

This Really Covers It, Doesn’t It? by The Elephant's Child


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A Political Problem? Just Throw Money At It. Make It Go Away! by The Elephant's Child

A billion here, a billion there, pretty soon you’re talking about real money.
But once you get up over a billion dollars, or even before that, it’s hard to grasp just what we are really talking about.

The current administration was hoping that the Republicans would fail to raise the debt ceiling, so they could demonize the GOP for the rest of the  year for not paying our country’s bills, for defaulting on the debt, destroying our credit-rating, for all the things they would be able to shut down to pay for the damage the nasty Republicans were doing to the country. But Republicans raised the limit, as had to be done anyway, and now the GOP is free to point at those who, so callously, could not stop spending.

The First Lady and the girls are in Aspen, skiing. The president has gone to California to play golf with Jay Carney, but dropped in on the Central Valley to publicize California’s drought — as a sign of global warming. It is a little preposterous to try to blame  the East’s snow and ice on global warming, though some of media have valiantly tried to do so. It really doesn’t pass the laugh test. Ditto for the drought.

Another quiet story broke that didn’t make front-page headlines. “A newly-uncovered and monumental calculating error in official U.S. government climate data shows that climate scientists unjustifiably added on a whopping one degree of phantom warming to the official ‘raw’ temperature record. ” Independent data analyst Steven Goddard released his telling study of the officially adjusted and “homogenized” U.S. temperature records relied upon by NASA, NOAA, USHCN and scientists  around the world to “prove” our climate has been warming dangerously. His evidence proves conclusively that the officially-claimed one-degree increase in temperatures is entirely fictitious. It also discredits the reliability of any assertion by such agencies to possess a reliable and robust temperature record.

So on his trip to California, President Obama is pitching a new $1 billion climate change resilience fund during a visit to Fresno and the Great Central Valley, devastated by government-caused drought. The President even hauled out his assistant to the president on science and technology, John Holdren, who said “Weather practically everywhere is being caused by climate change.”

The new fund—separate from Obama’s climate agenda announced in June — will be detailed in the president’s 2015 budget, set for release next month.  Obama has said he will use his executive authority to push his climate agenda and other policies during his “year of action,”  but the president would need approval from Congress for the fund.

In Europe, countries are backing away from renewable energy as they realize that they can’t afford the subsidies, and without subsidies the renewable energy goes away. Britain is having a flooding problem, blamed by some on global warming, but in reality, apparently the fault of government’s failure to dredge coastal rivers in order to protect a mollusc.

Victor Davis Hanson, a 3rd or 4th generation California farmer, explains the drought Mr, Obama wants to spend a billion on, as two droughts — nature’s and its man made twin.

Californians have not built a major reservoir since the New Melones Dam more than 30 years ago. As the state subsequently added almost 20 million people, it assumed that it was exempt from creating any more “unnatural” Sierra lakes and canals to store precious water during California’s rarer wet and snow-filled years.

Then, short-sightedness soon became conceit. Green utopians went further and demanded that an ailing three-inch bait fish in the San Francisco delta receive more fresh oxygenated water. In the last five years, they have successfully gone to court to force millions of acre-feet of contracted irrigation water to be diverted from farms to flow freely out to sea.

So there you have it. Government causes problems, president proposes billions in public money, congress appropriates, which doesn’t solve problems and creates more.  You can’t fix problems by throwing money at them. A Political Problem cannot be solved by throwing money in it’s direction.

United Auto Workers Stunned by Devastating Defeat at Volkswagen. by The Elephant's Child

Workers at a Tennessee Volkswagen plant firmly rejected the United Auto Workers union’s bid to break into the right-to-work state on Friday.

The plant rejected the UAWs attempt to unionize the plant 712–626, in spite of an aggressive campaign by the union, and with the cooperation of Volkswagen. Union opponents, including Matt Patterson, executive director of the Center for Worker Freedom, celebrated.

The rejection of a key Democrat Party ally came in spite of President Barack Obama’s improper personal support for the unionization drive. “Tennessee Republicans “are more concerned about German shareholders than American workers,” Obama said shortly before the vote was announced.

Previous failed UAW campaigns at Nissan and Honda plants were resisted by employers, but Volkswagen did not resist the union here. The company has said it favors the creation of a German-style “works council,” which gives workers a voice on a variety of product and other decisions. Under American law, a union must represent employees for a company to form a works council.

In Germany, high-school students are separated into vocational training programs early on. and I suspect that workers’ relations with German unions are quite different than workers’ relations with the UAW here. The United Auto Workers were stunned by the devastating defeat. They had hoped that with Volkswagen’s cooperation, they could break into the foreign-owned Southern factories, in spite of a region wary of organized labor. More and more states are becoming “right-to-work”as the example of Detroit competes with the pitches of union organizers.

Union’s incessant efforts to boost pay and benefits for workers seem less enticing when measured against shuttered factories, lost jobs and lost benefits in the examples so prominent in the news. Tennessee auto workers seem to be quite happy with their employer.  It usually helps the union cause if workers hate their boss, and feel mistreated.

It would be interesting to know if President Obama’s constant efforts  to push  unions help or hurt his cause.  He has certainly been involved,  not the job of a president.

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