Thursday, February 5, 2009
They spend money like drunk sailors on leave and expect us not to care.
From the latest press release from Speaker Hunt:
"...the House approved legislation authorizing some $176 million worth of construction projects that will provide as many as 3,000 jobs over the next few months." (Press Release, February 5, 2oo9, Office of the Speaker of the House.pdf)
That's three thousand jobs for three months? Each worth $58 thousand dollars?
What is happening in Salem is criminal. And this is just the beginning of the stupid. We're in early days down in Salem. If you think ten percent of these maintenance jobs are going to be done by legal Americans...you're dreaming.
The white guys will own the companies. The illegal guys will do the work.
But, in Oregon, the list of predatory animals includes coyotes, birds and rabbits.
In Alaska, the list is a little more manly. You've gotcher wolverine. Coyotes. And, wolves. Students of Russian literature will recall that the simple defense against an attack by wolves was to simply throw the youngest child from the sleigh and continue travel. You didn't want the wolves to get to your horses, or all was lost.
If you ranch in the West, you've seen the terrible, brutal way which predators take your stock. Look at what a rancher has invested in a calf by the time it is taken by a predator. You've committed to ten months of care and feeding for the cow. As well as additional costs for vet care. Structures investments, maintenance and repair. A ten month bovine investment which can be lost in moments after an attack from predatory animals. Coming across a carcass after such an attack is both sad and angering. If you take pride in your beeves the loss of a calf is an economic and emotional loss. Seeing the savage remains of a predatory attack is anger making. And as wolves become more likely in Oregon, since our brilliant leaders in Salem have determined that it is state policy to help increase the wolf population, the bloody carcasses of livestock seem to be the logical outcome of a policy that prefers predatory animals over ranchers. Not to mention naive lambs and calves.
Jack Southworth has an idea, though:
"That doesn't make it sound any better to Southworth, who is concerned for the local band of antelope along Shirttail Creek. Wolves, he fears, are another wedge between rural Eastern Oregon and urban Western Oregon.
"'My greatest frustration is the idea that Western Oregon is not wolf habitat and Eastern Oregon is,' he said. 'I think wolves would do great in the West Hills of Portland. I think there would be plenty of dogs, cats and maybe deer to eat. But that idea seems ridiculous. I feel the same way about wolves right here.'"
For anyone who has seen the carcass of a lamb, calf or antelope taken by a wolf, the image is disturbing. But lots of the images one gains from animal husbandry are disturbing. I would be lying if I told you that the day we slaughtered rabbits didn't and doesn't disturb me.
It has been said that a picture is worth a thousand words. But, I would suggest, that these same pictures can reveal a lot about the people providing those pictures. The image of a fetus within the womb can be such a strong image that it may not be shown. Below is an ad rejected by NBC:
Images are powerful things. But compare and contrast the ad you just watched with this attempt to use images to appeal to our emotions without the context of what it really means to advocate for a certain outcome for predatory animals without thinking about the victims of those predatory animals:
Ms. Judd is hot. Her mom is hot. She's an hell of an actress. But she hasn't much more than naivete and, perhaps, a political ax to grind in her presentation. And at no time in this video does she show you what happens to a deer, antelope, sheep or cow when a wolf attacks.
Alaska is more than twice the size of Texas. It's as big as, what, Texas, California and Montana combined. Perhaps Ms. Judd would support mobile SWAT teams of hunters roaming the tundra of Alaska on horseback? Or does she, in her naivete, simply reveal that for many Americans the idea that sausage-making is a messy business is today's latest, shocking discovery?
Common sense flies out the window when Lefties talk. In Oregon, people with little or no common sense pass laws. We call them legislators. Today they are taking up discussion for imposing Cap and Trade on the industries of Oregon. I'm sure they've been motivated by the images of the Gore "Truth" movie. Images. Pictures worth a thousand words. Which will cost Oregon thousands of jobs. It isn't settled science. It is settled images. We don't need to worry about the wolves in the Oregon legislature.
We need to worry about the rabbits.
Wednesday, February 4, 2009
Nice article on the Governor's budget plan at Terrancethisisstupidstuff.
When Palin took office in 2006, the State of Alaska had set aside $2.15-billion. Today that set aside is $6.59-billion. Unfortunately, Oregon's Democrats can't be trusted with the checkbook. Their big plan for the budget under discussion? How to borrow more money.
I mean, jeez...
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Tuesday, February 3, 2009
World peace, surely. Just a quick look at the webpage for Astoria Schools points out that "our" job as parents is to make sure our kids are "citizens of the earth." Of course I don't think there is a single teacher or administrator willing to stand against this Earth Citizen thing and promote American citizenship. The standard is simply too high. It would be too harmful to kids who don't want to be American citizens. It would mean, what? Individual responsibility? Working to advance yourself? In the world view, it's easier to rely upon your neighbor. It's what tax policy and Change!™ is all about. It's easier to take from your neighbor than to make a thing yourself.
And what is the standard for Earth Citizen? Well, we look around the world and see anti-Semitism gaining a prominent lead in Earth Citizen thinking. Israel is a terrorist country seeking to keep the liberators of Hamas down. Not cool, dude. Oh, and guys like Chavez and Mugabe screwing the folks who live under their dominion? They're just trying to make sure that their citizens are Earth Citizens. You can't do good without taking away a certain amount of economic liberty.
And American Values are too patriotic. You can't expect union employees to advocate American Values, can you? The "Can Do" thing? American entrepreneurship? It's all so white, bourgeoisie and jingoistic. Not everyone has the advantage of being white. Or male. Or American.
It comes as no surprise that Astoria Schools don't want to teach American values. Much easier to teach Earth Values.
Like, LNG is bad. Corporations are bad. Capitalism is bad. We need change. (Change!™) Cheap electricity rates are bad because we need to spend more for energy--alternative energy. Did you know that your schools are actually teaching your kids that energy from shale oil, drilling, hydropower, coal and LNG are "bad" sources of energy? What kid is going to stand up to a teacher and point out that while alternative energy may mean something to a teacher, it doesn't mean much to a guy trying to build a business? You don't get ergs from Earth Citizen dreaminess.
How do they sell the dreck that passes for education today? Ah. Here's their secret. It's called "sustainability."
Check out your standard Webster's college dictionary published before 1972. You'd think an important word like "sustainability" would be in there, right? It's not. Because it's a made-up word. Look at any resource, use the word "sustainability" and you have an argument against its utilization. We can't drill for oil because it doesn't have sustainability. We can't cut trees because of issues around sustainability. We can't develop our land because it lacks sustainability. I mean, once it's developed, we lose undeveloped land.
And we can't have that. And here's where Democrats come up with their motive: Earth Citizens. It doesn't matter that we have the tenth largest state in the Union. It doesn't matter that less than 2 percent of that landmass--tenth largest in the Union--has been developed. What matters is, if we develop more land, we lose that land. It's no longer sacred, I suppose. And if we're to be good Earth Citizens we need to stop looking at the state's resources in a typically American way. You know. For use.
Because utilization of any resource lacks sustainability. Any time you use a resource, it's, um...being used! And if We as Oregonians can't protect the Earth, how can we expect others to begin protecting the Earth? And so, we must lead.
Even though Oregon's population less than 2-1/2 percent of our nation's total population. If we continue to promote sustainablity here, others will follow. You don't think our state's Democrat bosses have a group Messianic delusion? How else do you describe "Oregon, we do things differently here" theme? So, while the people of Oregon are dwarfed by the population of the world, we do things to change the world. To be good Earth Citizens. Macro results from micro efforts.
In fact the best way to describe Oregon's legislature is to compare it to scenes from "Superman", where Jar-El is standing before his state's parliament and everthing is bright and white and wonderful. Truly, Jar-El was an Earth Citizen (albeit, from Krypton.) So don't be surprised when Oregon's duly elected representatives determine that We (Oregonians) must be different from other states.
If you buy into the Vision of the Democrat party, these folks are doing good in our name. Even though the population of Oregon is point-zero-zero-zero five percent of the world's population. We are five ten thousandths of the world's population. If we were an independent country, we would be entirely inconsequential. If all countries were our size, we would be one of two-thousand countries each making independent decisions about our individual futures. And among the bable of those two thousand countries, no one would care about what one little individual country, Oregon, is doing. What do we have going for us? High unemployment? An energy policy from space. Government mandates against growth and development. And an extremely naive policy of our being Earth Citizens.
Perhaps it is due to our having only 5 ten thousandths of the world's population. After all, the atmospheric content of carbon dioxide has been measured at less than 4 ten thousands of the total value of our earth's atmosphere. (Don't look at the 9,996 ten thousands in the atmosphere. It's carbon dioxide we're worried about.) And it's important. So, why can't Oregon be important, too?
In Oregon, we are have macro effects because we say so. Never mind that certain policies actually have a macro effect. Like our national tax policy. Not good enough for Oregon, sez Oregon lawmakers. At a time when Oregon's unemployment rate is skyrocketing, and the federal government is attempting to use its powers to stimulate growth and development, Oregon lawmakers want to remove macroeconomic stimulus from Oregon's economy.
"'Part of the purpose is to clear the decks, so that we do not have to worry about the effect of what the feds might do to us while we are trying to struggle with a very difficult budget situation,' said Chairman Phil Barnhart, D-Eugene."
Cutting taxes for Americans is good economic policy. Good macroeconomic policy. But not in Oregon.
Oregon. We do things differently here.
(H/T to Max.)
Monday, February 2, 2009
(Thanks to Government Is Not Your Daddy.)
In 1978 I worked for the Re-elect McCall campaign.
My hope was, that if he were the winner of the primary, that we could cobble enough votes together to return the Maverick to Salem. After two session with Bob Straub (No More BS!), it was pretty clear that Oregon was going to make a change.
When Victor Atiyeh failed to beat Straub in 1974 I figured that the party would welcome a return of the Maverick. And I was hedging: if Tom McCall had won, I wanted a place inside his new administration. SB100 was a long-term disaster for Oregon and Oregonians, but the anti-Californication crowd had gained too much influence with Governor Tom. And Tom was often overwhelmed by the adulation of the crowds that received him. What I felt he needed was someone who would push for replacement, if not outright repeal, of SB100. The big government guys loved SB100. It helped create a whole new industry: growth planners.
Rural counties looked at the requirements of SB100 and were horrified. Scarce revenue would be diverted from basic services into this new shibboleth. With less than 2 percent of the state's land developed, the interest in placing restraints on growth were misguided. And failed to take into account the changes that take place in demand for use of land in ways that people actually would want, rather than how they were planned for.
Here we are, some 35 years after the adoption of SB100 and still about 2 percent of Oregon's land has been developed. Rural counties are being crushed by state mandates...and increasing federal mandates. Schools are increasingly beholden to state and federal revenue and increasingly obsequious to demands of teachers' unions. Local control has been lost. That feeling of helplessness you have is natural.
You gave away your rights. Now you haven't any.
As the last remnants of the Rule of Law are replaced by mandates for Change!™ you're going to notice that fewer and fewer voices will be heard attempting to re-establish local control over schools, land and development issues. We will receive new and important mandates, however. Your choices will be limited so that we can Save the __________!™
Want to restore local control and downsize the state government? Work for the repeal of SB100. County governments should be more than the lackies of the State. Opponents to repeal would attempt to scare you that with the repeal of SB100 the State of Oregon would be inundated by outside developers attempting to cash in on easy local rules.
Imagine. Stimulus. From the private sector. Jobs. Cutting trees. Building homes and offices and factories. Without government mandates and control.
Or is this just another Utopian fantasy?