This, the fifth post in a series evaluating the fiscal responsibility/irresponsibility of the Governments of the United States (mostly the Congress, the Executive Branch, and the Federal Reserve) by Administration periods, beginning in 1977 to 1981 with the Jimmy Carter period, will cover the performance of the Government on the environment and climate change aspect of “public purpose.” Posts 1, 2, 3, and 4, discussed some basic definitions and assumptions of the series and evaluated Government performance relating to economic stagnation, living wage full employment, price stability/inflation, implementing universal health care, and educational reform.
I've explained why fiscal responsibility is closely connected to the idea of public purpose, in this post prior to beginning the series. You'll want to read it, if you want to know what I mean by “public purpose,” and see what else that pregnant term includes, apart from enhancing the environment.
In the first post, I also claimed that the Government of the United States has been fiscally irresponsible in every Administration period since 1977, because its fiscal policies have largely worked against key aspects of public purpose. The first 4 posts supported that claim across 5 aspects of public purpose, as will this one. Future posts in this series will attempt to document it across additional aspects of public purpose. Read more about Real Fiscal Responsibility 5; Carter: Environmental Degradation
Two of the more loaded words in contemporary politics are independence and freedom. Despite their similarities in meaning they get used in very different ways. Independence is used in a more national sense, which might be natural because of its prominence in what is arguably our founding document. It doesn't seem like it is possible to disparage independence in our discourse. Even a word like patriotism, while generally well regarded, has qualifications. Independence is all good though, so anything you can attach to it is improved by the association.
This has played out for years now with the much-invoked phrase "energy independence." The latest calls for it began in the wake of 9/11 as a way to argue for policies that would remove our need to import oil from abroad. It made sense on the face of it: We send our money to oil-rich states, states that in some cases fund groups hostile to America. Buy from them and you're funding the terrorists, went the argument. (This is simply a description of what leaders put out for public consumption, not an endorsement of it.) Read more about Away from energy independence, and towards energy freedom
(cross-posted from PaxLupo.com)
First, let’s dispense with the comforting bedtime story of energy independence. Regardless of all the campaign rhetoric, neither Romney’s “Drill Everywhere” nor Obama’s “All of the Above” energy strategies do anything for energy independence. Regardless of how much oil, gas and even alternative energy is produced by commercial operations in this country (or Canada), unless the government is prepared to either nationalize the industry or commandeer the product, companies are free to sell their goods wherever and to whomever they like. It can safely be said that neither candidate favors energy industry nationalization. The question will still remain; independent from whom? Read more about Is there an Energy Shock Doctrine?
And now for something completely different.
We have our plantidotes, petidotes, and insectidotes here on Corrente, but at least once I thought I might put forward an antidote that humans have made, an antidote to more than one sort of poison. Read more about Friday Energidote: Kitegen's Prototype Stem
Awesome footage from Montana site 4&20blackbirds.com on a piece about "Freeing the White Salmon River". It is the 2nd largest dam to be dismantled ever. Read more about Breech of the Dam and Rebirth of White Salmon River
[Edit for clarity: i'm visiting Chicagoland this weekend, but I no longer live in IL, and when I did I lived in South Side Chicago proper. I currently live in a suburb of MI's capitol city of Lansing. Sorry for not making that more clear in the post.] I'm on the road this weekend, but I thought I'd post some thoughts I've had while spending a lot, and I do mean a lot of time in the car. I really wish I had the opportunity to travel more, because I'd like to get more support for this thesis with my own eyes. Read more about Mini vs Mega Burbs
Who: Former Vice President Al Gore
What: A discussion on the future of America's energy needs
Where: D.A.R. Constitution Hall 1776 D St., NW, Washington, DC
When: Thursday, July 17 at 12:00 p.m. EDT Read more about Al Gore to speak in Washington DC
I've got a lot to do today, so rapid posting now with return later in commments, go read this tale of what I'm going to start calling "predatory government." Here's a sample:
Read more about CA Energy Fraud: An Tale of Predatory Government