Free Markets, Free People

Daily Archives: July 7, 2011

Obama embraces his inner Bush

So how does the left feel about the 3rd term of George Bush – when it comes to prosecuting wars?

The Obama administration, which refuses to send terrorism suspects to the detention center at Guantanamo Bay Naval Base, on Wednesday defended its decision to interrogate a detainee for two months aboard a U.S. Navy ship, outside the reach of American law.

“He was detained lawfully, under the law of war, aboard a Navy ship until his transfer to the U.S. for prosecution,” presidential spokesman Jay Carney said.

Uh, wasn’t that the argument of the Bush administration?  Didn’t they say  that detaining unlawful combatants at Guantanamo was a lawful detention under the “law of war” (or similar words to that effect)?

After all, the only difference here is location.  One place is located on an island outside the US and the other is a ship located outside the US.  However, the very same thing happened in both locations – something Obama argued against most strenuously when but a mere candidate for office.

My, my … you mean George Bush might have been right about all this?  That it is indeed both legal and necessary?  How come we’re not being treated to the usual “Bush did it” this time?

Oh, and so much for Miranda rights, huh?

“Wherever possible, our first priority is and always has been to apprehend terrorism suspects and to preserve the opportunity to elicit the valuable intelligence that can help us protect the American people,”Mr. Carney said. He added that the International Committee of the Red Cross was allowed to visit the Navy vessel “and had an opportunity to interview the detainee aboard the ship.”

I’m sure the Red Cross was able to visit – after our boy had coughed up what he needed to cough up.  I love the expression of the “first priority” too.  To “preserve the opportunity to elicit the valuable intelligence that can help us protect the American people.”  But evil Bush – not so much huh?

Funny how the rules change when you get stuck with the responsibility of prosecuting a war and protecting the nation and everything is fine that you condemned previously.  Ignorance and hypocrisy are the operative terms here.

~McQ

Twitter: @McQandO

[ad] Empty ad slot (#1)!

The UN’s plan to dominate the world of energy and to redistribute wealth? “Climate change”

If you’ve ever wondered what the purpose was of the UN’s climate change agenda or where it is going, a new report makes it pretty obvious:

Two years ago, U.N. researchers were claiming that it would cost “as much as $600 billion a year over the next decade” to go green. Now, a new U.N. report has more than tripled that number to $1.9 trillion per year for 40 years.

So let’s do the math: That works out to a grand total of $76 trillion, over 40 years — or more than five times the entire Gross Domestic Product of the United States ($14.66 trillion a year). It’s all part of a “technological overhaul” “on the scale of the first industrial revolution” called for in the annual report. Except that the U.N. will apparently control this next industrial revolution.

The new 251-page report with the benign sounding name of the “World Economic and Social Survey 2011” is rife with goodies calling for “a radically new economic strategy” and “global governance.”

Throw in possible national energy use caps and a massive redistribution of wealth and the survey is trying to remake the entire globe. The report has the imprimatur of the U.N., with the preface signed by U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon – all part of the “goal of full decarbonization of the global energy system by 2050.”

Make no mistake, much of this has nothing to do with climate.

I couldn’t agree more with the last sentence.  This has never been about climate.  World governance, however,  is and always has been the end game of the “Third World Debating Club”, also known as the UN. 

Dan Gainor, who wrote the piece being quoted, then cites the press release from the UN concerning the report:

The press release for the report discusses the need “to achieve a decent living standard for people in developing countries, especially the 1.4 billion still living in extreme poverty, and the additional 2 billion people expected worldwide by 2050.” That sounds more like global redistribution of wealth than worrying about the earth’s thermostat.

Well if you really understand how this is being approached, Gainor is exactly right.   Let me explain.   Those living in “extreme poverty” – the 1.4 billion cited – live mostly without running water and electricity.  Anyone – what is the fastest way to remedy that situation?  Well on the power side, fossil fueled (i.e coal fired) power plants.  You can build them relatively cheaply and quickly and they can begin to provide the requisite power necessary to begin to lift these people out of poverty.

But of course, the UN couldn’t control that, could they?  Instead, it has decided the way to do this is through going green with complete “decarbonization” by 2050.  That is can control, because it has been the initiator of most of this nonsense about global warming and the absurd treaties that have gone with it.   If it can find a way to convince governments that the threat is real and to have them self-impose carbon restrictions on themselves based on the UN agenda, it will be the UN calling the shots.

So essentially the UN is holding these 1.4 billion hostage to their agenda by refusing to budge on their push for global “decarbonization” by 2050.  In essence they’re telling the extremely poor that they’re stuck with that condition because the simple and immediately available solution is unacceptable to them since it poses a threat to the environment.  They’ll just have to wait while the UN engineers this agenda to the detriment of economies everywhere and we all end up in poverty of some sort.

An example of where this could head can be found in the UK right now as Christopher Booker explains:

Three years ago, when the hysteria over global warming was still at its height, our own British politicians voted almost unanimously for the Climate Change Act committing us, uniquely in the world, to cut our CO2 emissions by 80 per cent within 40 years. Even on the Government’s own figures, show that this will cost us up to £18 billion every year until 2050 – it is by far the most expensive law ever passed by Parliament. As our politicians continually impose on us ever higher taxes and other costs supposedly in the cause of ‘fighting climate change’ they have been carried away by a collective fantasy that has no parallel in history.

The result has been quite predictable:

As energy prices go through the roof, shocking figures reveal one in four families has been plunged into fuel poverty. Consumer Focus warns as many as 6 million could be forced to choose between a hot meal or heating their homes this winter.

Here are the numbers:

As energy prices go through the roof, shocking figures reveal one in four families has been plunged into fuel poverty.

[…]

The figures are higher than the one in five first estimated and show for the first time wealthier families have also been hammered by spiralling fuel costs with 15% of middle classes now fuel poor.

Research from price comparison website uSwitch found the number would leap to one in three if housing costs were added in.

It means at least 18 million people are spending 10% or more of their take home pay on energy bills. Based on the new way of calculating fuel poverty, 47% of working class families and 22% of the middle classes fall into this bracket.

A quarter of families with a stay-at-home parent are fuel poor but uSwitch argues this figure would soar to 44% if mortgages or rents were included. The number of fuel poor single parent families would jump from 39% to 52% while pensioner numbers would rise from 33% to 36%.

According to the website, fuel bills have rocketed by 71% in the past five years rising from £660 a year in 2006 to £1,131 today.

In other words, the UK’s self-imposed carbon caps and attempts to use not-ready-for-primetime alternative and renewable energy sources has driven up energy costs to such a level that it has put 1 in 4 in the UK into what is known as “fuel poverty”.

Bottom line?

William Baker, Head of Fuel Poverty Policy added: “Rising energy prices will lead to a bigger bills and a huge upswing in fuel poverty. This will mean an increasing percentage of our population, especially those on low incomes, are more likely to live in colder or damp houses or face higher debt.”

Most who have taken the time to do some study of the subject of climate change have come to the conclusion the science supporting it is suspect and that the UN’s IPCC is a political organization, not a scientific one.   This new UN report just puts an exclamation  on
that point.  The UN has, for years, concocted various plans and schemes to give it a larger role in world governance.  Not satisfied with being a deliberative body with the aim of keeping the peace, it now is attempting to find ways to direct revenue via this, their most ambitious scheme to date, to who they choose should receive it.  It is indeed a revenue redistribution scheme.

The end result of enacting this plan would be disastrous to the world’s economies, would keep those 1.4 billion in extreme poverty in the same state and, as is being demonstrated in the UK, put even more of the world’s population in “fuel poverty”.

Time to kill this monster now, before it gets any further out of its cage.

~McQ

Twitter: @McQandO

[ad] Empty ad slot (#1)!

Obama not serious about debt ceiling or deficit

There’s a story out in the Washington Post about Obama’s supposed willingness to make cuts to entitlements, specifically Social Security.   Also out today is a story in The Hill concerning proposals to make much deeper cuts to defense spending than previously proposed.  All of this has to do with the debt ceiling debate.

The question I ask is what is really behind the Obama willingness to cut (or claim to be open to cutting) Social Security.  Is it real or is it just politics?

Combine that with increased cuts in defense and one has to question what the administration is or isn’t really willing to do?  My conclusion?  The Social Security cut proposal is smoke and mirrors.  The defense cuts are real, i.e. that’s where Obama and the Democrats are willing to go and go deep.  Why have I concluded that?  Well, two paragraphs, one in each story, give the game away.

First Social Security:

Privately, some congressional Democrats were alarmed by the president’s proposal, which could include adjusting the measure of inflation used to determine Social Security payouts. But others described it as primarily a bargaining strategy intended to demonstrate Obama’s willingness to compromise and highlight the Republican refusal to raise taxes.

A president running for re-election is not going to condone cuts in Social Security in an election year.   Politics 101.  Not. Going. To. Happen. 

But … he comes from a base constituency which would be fine with deep cuts to defense (disclaimer: there are cuts to defense that can be made – that’s understood – but not at the level they’re proposing).  Here’s the paragraph from The Hill story that tells you how serious Obama is about cutting spending – he gave it away at his “Twitter Townhall” yesterday:

During his first-ever Twitter town hall meeting Wednesday, Obama said the Defense budget is so large that even modest cuts to it would free up dollars for other federal programs.

Of course the budget is “large”, thanks to him we’re involved in our third war.  But that’s not the key takeaway from this paragraph.  Notice what he’s talking about for the dollars freed up by cuts.  Debt reduction?   Nope – further spending.

But it is more than clear that Obama is willing to gut defense and attempt to claim radical spending reductions on the back of the national security apparatus as a means of satisfying voters concerned about debt.  The $400 billion in DoD cuts has already been declared dangerous.  $700 billion would most likely be crippling.  With the first, you would trim mostly fat, but have a good chance of cutting critical muscle (i.e. critical programs such as the F-35).  With $700 billion in cuts, to continue the analogy, you’re cutting through muscle straight to the bone.

Defense spending is not sacrosanct and as I mention above, there are certainly cuts to be made.  But the problem with spending isn’t to be found there.  It is and always has been in entitlements.  President Obama has no intention of cutting Social Security – bet on it.   Unless such cuts for both Medicare and Social Security are made and restructuring of both programs seriously undertaken, what is happening (other than defense cuts) can’t be taken seriously and represents the politics at its worst.

Not that anyone should be surprised, considering the political class we’ve elected to represent us.

~McQ

Twitter: @McQandO

[ad] Empty ad slot (#1)!