Thursday, January 10, 2008

Yes, It's been a while

From the lobby PC - so no cut and paste of links. Sorry.

Had a fun holiday, but exhausting. Rented a Grand Prix and G6 GT (different locations), and was reminded why I just love cars with over 200 horses under the hood. The pump prices reminded me why I am also happy I don't own one of these.

Speaking of pump prices, The Oil Drum's roundups of articles indicate that MSM is finally reacting to the status of the oil supply, although that strike at $100 oil was apparently the work of a publicity hound. Nevertheless, Simmons had an article (PDF) from November posted there discussing the fundamentals around the analyses leading to the conclusion that peak has likely occurred back in May 2005. Noticed a slug today from an article indicating that Russia, for all its bluster, is pumping oil that is feeding domestic needs, the export trade may not be all that for our comrades across the pond.

Also saw an article on climate change that clearly explained why the fact that a portion of the Antartic gets snow and more ice (higher elevations are the reason) does not negate the overall theory that climate change is hard upon us. In that vein, Nature magazine will be running a couple of articles that conclude climate change is a cyclical event that is being amplified by human activity, a theory I have subscribed to for some time. We keep forgetting that the smartest mammal on the planet also has the capacity engineer ourselves out of existence. Who was it that invented the H-bomb, biological warfare, and chemical warfare? Our friends the beavers are superb dam builders, but their skills pretty much end there.

Caught up to the racket about the lawyer around the corner from me who seems to bear a grudge against the military. He certainly took a drubbing on the blogs, and understandably so, but I don't think harassing him via email, phone, etc. served any useful purpose other than to prove the Internet is an effective way to organize a mob response to an event. And while we are on that subject, I read about the Megan Meier/MySpace suicide. The behavior of the adult (a friend's Mom) involved was the lowest I have ever heard. Unfortunately, the behavior of the adults who are responding via the 'Net is as low, perhaps lower. My Mom (may she rest in peace) used to ask me if I was going to jump off a bridge or grovel in the ditch just because my friends did. I suspect she would have no patience for those who pursued the lawyer or the woman who engineered the MySpace hoax leading to Megan's death. There is no value in showing you can sink to the same level as those you would criticize.

I am not registered to any party (personally consider myself a Republicrat), so cannot vote in the Primary on Feb 5. However, I will be at United Church of Rogers Park for the Candidate Forum, especially since I get to introduce the candidates and moderate. It's a great opportunity for the Democrat voters to ask questions and hear from their candidates for the State Senate District 7 seat. Hope you are there.

Staying on top of the primaries; happy that both Obama and Clinton have won primaries, with any luck this will be a solid campaign on the Democratic side. A few people I have talked with would love to see a Hillary/Barack ticket (Barack as Veep) as they believe it would be a dynamite ticket nationally, and buff America's rep internationally. I am hard pressed to disagree. I like Barack, but Kass' column reminds me he has little national experience. I am not in favor of dynasties (Bush was more than enough), but may be able to live with Billary/Barack.

The Republicans have a lot of work to do. Right now McCain is the most viable of the candidates I am seeing. Huckabee scares the bejesus out of me, Romney may be too patrician for this cycle of elections and the rest just need to hang it up if they can't do any better by Super Tuesday. I would like to see a knock down, drag out fight for the general election, but given voter dissatisfaction with the Repubs, I kinda doubt it.

Back when I can get on the lobby PC again. Bye.


Fargo said...

I've always thought it was wrong that Illinois does not allow unaffiliated voters to vote in a primary election. New Hampshire's got the right idea there.

The North Coast said...

Remember, JFK was 43 years old and didn't have much national experience, either. I use JFK as an example because he had so much in common with Obama- youth, intellectual brilliance, and the ability to inspire, which neither Clinton nor Edwards seems to have.

Somehow, I can't count Clinton's years as First Lady as "national experience". Being a power behind the throne is not the same as being truly accountable. Moreover, she has not come up with either a viable health plan nor a reason for her support of the war.

I would be willing to support anyone who would come clean on the real reason to support the war. The only reason that matters, really. I don't want to hear any more crap about "fostering democracy" or "fighting terrorism".

In other words, I could get behind someone who would level with us about the seriousness of our energy situation, and say to the sheeple out here: Listen, all of you. I know you don't like the war and I don't like the war either, but as long as you people out here insist upon living in 4000 sq ft houses and running 3 gas-guzzles per household and making 11 car trips per day and commuting 40 miles each direction to work, we are going to have to have war. So figure out if all this stuff is worth sending our young people to die for.

But, so far, nobody has really said this, or suggested to the citizenry that they might have to make any adjustment at all. Everyone wants to keep on enabling the boys and girls out here in the idea that they can have their oil and guzzle it up.

So far, Obama is the only candidate who has ideas that are even halfway realistic concerning energy. Even he still spouts nonsense about biofuels. But at least he supports nuclear power, as well as high gas mileage standards for autos.

McCain is the only Republican with any ideas on energy at all.

Regarding Obama's distasteful association with local machine pols like Daley and Moore and Fagus- there is no way anyone is going to make it to the national level without picking up dirt along the way.