American Elephants

If It Sounds Good, It Trumps Truth Every Time! by The Elephant's Child

I shouldn’t do this to myself.  I go to the White House website fairly frequently to read what the president has to say in his speeches and remarks.  I don’t want to judge him by what others have to say, but to read his own words. That’s only fair.

So I read what he had to say on Tuesday at a campaign speech in Austin, Texas. You expect campaign speeches to be self-enhancing, putting one’s best side forward, pointing out successes while ignoring the mistakes, so you have to allow some self-aggrandizement — but there are limits.

But we’ve got more work to do.  Some of you may have noticed gas prices are a little high.  And with all the instability around the world we’ve got to keep making those investments in alternative energy.  And to help pay for it, by the way, because we’ve got to worry about our fiscal situation, it’s time to eliminate the $4 billion in taxpayer subsidies that were given to oil and gas companies — (applause) — $4 billion of your money that they’re making for record profits while you’re struggling at the tank.  Instead of subsidizing yesterday’s energy sources, let’s invest in tomorrow’s energies.

Sorry, that is false. The oil and gas companies don’t get “subsidies.” They get to depreciate their capital investments just like every other business does. If a company buys a big new machine, they get to depreciate it over its useful life, so that they can afford to replace it when they need to. An oil company has a pool of oil or gas that is of finite quantity. They get to depreciate it over its finite extent. In the case of oil companies it’s called a depletion allowance.

Oil and gas are not “yesterday’s” energy sources — they are the sources on which our economy will be dependent for the foreseeable future. Wind and solar energy have nothing to do with transportation, and biofuels contain less energy than gas, are more polluting, and use way too much land.

Because of you we’re putting hundreds of thousands of people back to work repairing crumbling roads and bridges, our infrastructure.  But now we’ve got to make sure America is built to compete in the 21st century — not just new roads and bridges, but high-speed rail lines and high-speed internet.  We always used to have the best stuff.  Texas knows something about that.  But today South Korea has faster high-speed Internet than we do.  China has got high-speed rail.  It doesn’t have to be that way.  We created the Internet.  Austin knows a little bit about the high-tech industry.  We should be leading the world when it comes to cutting-edge technologies and innovation.

Because of you? No, we’re not “putting hundreds of thousands of people back to work repairing crumbling roads and bridges, our infrastructure.”  He loves this idea, but it has never happened, whatever roads were crumbling are still crumbling. Ditto bridges. He admitted himself that there weren’t any “shovel ready” jobs, and it has become very clear that the “stimulus” was a gigantic waste directed largely at payback to the labor unions for their campaign support.

The Labor Department’s current jobs report, indicates that fewer black men now have jobs than at any time in recorded history. If the election of America’s first African-American president was supposed to give blacks an economic boost, it hasn’t emerged yet. Indeed the percentage of African-American men with a job has dropped to it lowest level since 1972, according to the government’s monthly jobs report.

I would urge you to read the speech.  This is what he says to his Democrat supporters, and there’s no truth in it. It’s all fluff at best or gross hyperbole. What it means is that we have to look carefully at candidates’ record of accomplishment, and demand real experience, not good looks.  America fell for showmanship, a deep baritone voice, a dazzling smile and a fraudulent resume.

So ultimately that’s what this budget debate in Washington is all about. it’s  about who we are. It’s not just about numbers.  It’s about our values, what we care about, the kind of country we believe in.

What a colossal load of #*&#! nonsense.  It is about spending. You are deliberately spending more money that you are taking in, and you can’t squeeze enough out of “the rich” to save the country. It is about the kind of country we believe in — responsible, dependable, solvent, able to pay our bills.

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