19 July 2008

Mt. Greenie

11,271 ft.

Highest point in New Mexico attainable in a vehicle. The trip up and down was quite a bit of fun, I've gotta say. And the view at the top was awesome.

13 July 2008

Google Trends: ǝlƃooƃ noʎ ʞɔnɟ, Jul 13, 2008

I just noticed an interesting #1 Google trend (follow the link above). It says, "ǝlƃooƃ noʎ ʞɔnɟ." What an interesting trend, indeed.

Winning the Energy War

This is an expanded version of a little thing I sent in to Senator Cornyn's website; perhaps it will show up there as well at some point in the near future. In the meantime, here you go....

All that is required to win the energy war that has been raging in this country since the 1970s is to defeat the radical environmentalists.

Think about it.

Every policy, law and regulation that is keeping us from becoming energy independent has its origin with the environmental movement.

The United States sits on more resources than we could use in the foreseeable future in the form of oil, gas and coal deposits. Add nuclear and emerging technologies into the mix and our reliance on foreign governments that may or may not support the United States would be over.

Yet we are not allowed to mine the resources that we are in fact, sitting on, thanks to the environmental movement. Between the moratorium on offshore drilling that was signed into law in the 1980s, and President Clinton's proclamation in 1996 making 1.7million acres in Utah a national monument and therefore putting off limits billions of tons of clean burning coal - the United States is fighting the energy war with both hands tied behind its back.

Thanks to public reaction to the 1979 movie The China Syndrome, we have
limited the construction of nuclear power plants. Thanks to "do as I say, not as I do" liberals like Teddy Kennedy, we can't build windmills in areas that might ruin the cultural "viewscape." Environmental regulations make it impossible to build oil refineries to the point that we haven't had a new refinery built in the United
States in decades. It makes you wonder just whose side the environmentalists and their lackeys are on because clearly they are not on the side of the American people. It is crystal clear that we are on the cusp of a growing energy crisis yet we as a country are handcuffed at every turn as we search for either existing energy supplies or new sources of energy whether that is nuclear, wind, or water power. To an outside observer, it would appear that the environmentalists want nothing more than to return to the Jeffersonian ideal of an agrarian nation of yeoman farmers.

In order to regain our energy independence, we must turn back the tide of radical environmentalists who would have us believe in manmade climate change. Common sense should dictate that while climate change is real, man has nothing to do with it. Ice ages have come and gone without the internal combustion engine. Global warming is taking place on Mars and mankind has yet to set a foot there. More pollutants are emitted into the atmosphere during a large volcanic explosion than all of mankind's history, from day 1. Yet somehow, the radical environmentalists and their willing accomplices in the media will have us believe that in a little over 100 years, the internal combustion engine is to blame for any climate change we are currently experiencing.

Again, proving that common sense is not so common, let's think about this. We all know that weathermen can't predict with any degree of certainty what the weather will do this weekend. In fact, here in north Texas, we're lucky if they can predict what it's going to do this afternoon with any accuracy! Yet many of these same people who can't tell us what's going to happen 5 days from now will have us believe
that they know for certain what will happen 50 years from now. Am I the only one that sees a problem with this?

And let's look at the expense our economy is paying for "going green". Hybrid cars are great, right? No one ever seems to say anything (with the exception of Car and Driver) that after you pay the premium the dealerships are putting on hybrid vehicles, you'd have to own the car several decades to balance out the cost savings. No one points out that the batteries are going to wind up in a landfill
somewhere. Everyone knows that batteries, even rechargeable ones, die over time. What kind of environmental mess is THAT going to make?

The ethanol gas lobby that is forcing "green" ethanol down our throats adds additional expense to an already tight gasoline market for a gas product that performs at least 10-15% worse than a non-ethanol based product. So you end up using more gas and paying more for it at the pump all so we can feel good about the environment. Governmental entities across the country are spending billions upon billions of dollars to purchase "green" equipment that doesn't work as efficiently or as powerfully as gasoline powered equipment but hey, at least we can all feel good about ourselves, right?

What's the answer? I am surely not advocating strip mining or irresponsible drilling. There have been enough technological advances in the last 30 years that make both prospects environmentally conscious and safer than they were 3 decades ago. (Again, apply common sense. Do you really think that Exxon wants another Valdez? To do so would kill their company in today's climate.) Drill responsibly for oil and natural gas. Mine responsibly for coal. Build nuclear power plants. Develop new technologies that are economically feasible and practical. Deregulate the energy business to the point that they can work to explore and produce additional power supply for the country. Build new refineries. Think about what that would do to job growth alone, not to mention our energy woes! We're the United States of America for God's sake! We put a man on the moon in about a decade of trying, do you really think we can't solve our energy issues if we put our mind to it? But in order to do all of this, we need to stop the hoax that is the
environmental movement and refuse to be bullied by their tactics.

Take away the illusion that leftists are the only ones who *care* about the
environment. I am as avid an outdoorsman as any environmentalist I know. Unlike most of them, who only pretend that they can survive in the outdoors without their A/C and running water, I know (because I've done it many, many times) that I can survive and thrive in harsh environments from deserts to mountains to swamps, thickets and timber. I love to be outdoors and view the natural environment as something to be treasured and enjoyed. But I also understand that in order to
protect and support this thing that is the United States of America, we have to defeat the environmental movement that will have us believe that a field mouse is more important than the survival of our society.

Defeat the radical environmentalist movement, and we are well on our way to winning the energy war.