OT: Oil Spill. There are two men...

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snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

Not only is the government getting larger, it is getting more incompetent.
Most of our presidents have had executive experience. Bush 41 was UN Ambassador and Director of Central Intelligence. Bush 43 was governor of a large state. Clinton was in public service for most of his working life.
These folks had, at heart, a valuable precept: choose the right people. The biggest problem with the current administration is they have no adult in charge. The Secretary of Homeland Security is the ex-governor of a relatively small state. The Secretary of Energy is an academic whose only brush with commercial energy is flipping on a light switch. The Interior Secretary is a former U.S. Senator who might have visited a national park. The Labor Secretary was a U.S. Congresswoman from California. And so on.
Offhand, I can think of no current appointments where qualifications were the primary factor and only a few where the qualifications are sufficient (Holder as Attorney General and Sotomayer as Supreme Court Justice).
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HeyBub wrote:

Compared to GWB and "Brownie", Obama's people are all rocket scientists, and either Clinton probably capable of understanding any issue any of them discussed. Given the choice between a PhD. in physics and a guy who ran horse shows, I'd be inclined to take the academic. If there were more academic voters, we might be better off...25% HS dropouts and 1% ex-cons.
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snipped-for-privacy@earthlink.net wrote: .

Well, let's see (I'll omit the qualifications where they're obvious): State: Colin Powell & Condi Rice Treasury: Paul O'Neill (served under Nixon, Ford, Reagan, Bush) - John Snow, economist, served under Nixon & Ford, Director National Highway Administration Defense: Donald Rumsfeld Interior: Gale Norton, Interior Department, Colorado Attorney General Attorney General: John Ashcroft, Missouri Attorney General, Governor Agriculture: Ann Veneman, California Secretary of Food & Agriculture Transportation: Norman Manetta (D), former Secretary of Commerce
and so on. All on this list, and most of the rest, have had experience running large government agencies.
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wrote:

High class. Powell left when he couldn'tstomachit anymore Rice knuckled under.

I have no opinion. I think they were pretty bland and doing as directed.

IMNSHO (disclaimer) criminal.

I have no opinion. bland and doing as directed.

See Rumsfeld qualification.

See Rice.

Experience running large bureacracies is not enough. You also have to have integrity and the political will to do what is right. Sometimes even the Constitution comes into play <BG>.
--
Best regards
Han
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Han wrote:

The issue was experience and competence, not integrity, honesty, or whether the individual likes puppies.
Consider Richard Nixon. He brought an end to the Viet Nam war and opened up relations with China (every time I go to Harbor Freight I thank Tricky Dick). By all objective measures, a pretty good president.
But most thought he was a crook.
The public, in retaliation, elected the most righteous man that was running: Jimmy Carter, and a more incompetent buffon would be hard to find. His presidency was a disaster, but his morality was untouchable, just the reverse of Nixon.
So, if you choose someone who makes you feel good over someone who can actually, you know, run things, you're screwed.
Note I'm not saying a person can't be good AND competent; I'm saying that between the two, I'll take competency.
After all, Mussolini made the trains run on time.
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HeyBub wrote:

Jimmy's major attraction, brought forth by the media because nobody outside of Georgia had ever heard of him, was SMALLER GOVERNMENT!! (No terrorist attacks or oil spills in Georgia).

Yeh, that's what I said when Reagan ran for pres. Nobody every got bent out of shape over Ronnie ignoring the AIDS epidemic 'cause the only ones killed for quite a while were gay men and then kids with hemophilia.

Wonder what Monica and Paula are doin' these days.

Please don't take this as a complaint, but Sarah Pahlin has been strangely quiet these days...isn't she the one who knows how to handle oil companies?
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Han wrote:

Continuing on with the discussion of the competence of Obama's picks, just yesterday he announced a "Blue Ribbon Panel" to investigate the causes of the recent oil spill and make recommendations for changes in policy. This commission consists of seven members.
Member #1 (Murray) is Dean of Harvard's engineering school. He's an expert in optics. Member #2 (Reilly) is an environmental scientist with a sub-specialty in oil spills.
So far, pretty good.
Member #3 (Beinecke) is an environmental activist and has often urged a total ban on offshore drilling. Member #4 (Graham) is a former Florida governor who led the fight opposing offshore drilling in his state Member #5 (Boesch) professor of environmental science Member #6 (Ulmer) University chancellor Member #7 (Garcia) former chief lawyer for NOAA.
You'll note that the commission is long on policy wonks and short on technical expertise.
More info: http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20100620/ap_on_bi_ge/us_gulf_oil_spill_commission
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I'm not yet retired. I can't go and fish for the bona fides of all these guys. Thus I take your words for it. I know your words have a political color. That's fine. Mine usually do have a color too, I think a complimentary one. I hope you don't mind. I think this is a plite discussion!!
So according to you there are a bunch of technical experts. Of course there are also "policy wonks" (your words), or maybe "politicians" (?) on that committee. After all they are (to be charged) with formulating policy. There are also lawyer types, presumably they know or should know how to formulate laws/regulations. Altogether, aren't these the types of people who should formulate policy? I don't think it should be only oil company execs, including experts in sailing?? Laws and regulations should follow, and Congress should have a voice in it. And maybe after that, the courts. Who knows. I would like a setup (as exists in Holland) of a sort of pro forma trial before the SCOTUS to immediately figure out their opinion of constitutionality of a drastic change (if that comes forth) in current law/regulation.
The ultimate goal is to prevent a blowout like this to happen ever again. I am not an oil expert, but I have a suspicious feeling that we are lucky that this is happening in warm waters, where both evaporation and metabolism of oil is greater. An old rule of thumb says that for every 10 degrees Centigrade, enzymatic conversions go 3 times faster. But I have no idea what the temperatures of the Gulf waters are over their whole depth range, only that the surface waters are probably close to 20 degrees centigrade higher than in/near the Arctic, which should mean that metabolism is ~9-10 times faster.
--
Best regards
Han
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wrote:

True, but he surely signed death warrants for execution while Governor. When he went to the Senate, I suspect he got light in the loafers (weak).
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On the other hand, the guy who found out what caused the Challenger disaster was a physicist.
Cindy Hamilton
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Robert Green wrote:

I disagree. Rumsfeld didn't so much SEND troops to get killed as he ALLOWED our warrior class to go do their thing: kill people and blow things up. Our military are volunteers and they knew the risks when they signed up, much the same as mountain climbers, sky divers, or race car drivers. To them, the opportunity to cause death and mayhem was worth the (slim) chance of a disability.

Good point. I would also argue that we need a war every decade or so to keep the tip of the spear sharp and to encourage enlistments. After all, who would want to be a fireman if there were no fires?

Another good point. But a stockholder can divest himself of any connection to policies he opposes. This is not the case with labor unions.
Also allowing "special interests" to participate in the election process is good. They act as a foil to the lunatic unwashed masses who emotionally enact "feel-good" legislation that causes calamity. California is an "initative and referendum" state which means the plebeians can pass anything if they get a big enough mob together. Limits on taxes, mandated smaller class sizes, Draconian environmental constraints, prohibition of products that cause distended stomachs in laboratory rats when they are force-fed five pounds of the substance daily, and so on, have turned the state into a disfunctional Rube Goldberg machine.
No, "special interests" are often the voice of reason (e.g., the NRA) in a world filled with slogans. It is altogether fitting and proper that their voices be heard.
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The invaded Grenada to keep the world safe for second-tier medical students. Everyone knows that.

Actually there is always the implied (your) special interests. Mine, because they are by definition Good and Pure and Righteous, should have no restrictions.
--
I want to find a voracious, small-minded predator
and name it after the IRS.
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There are two very distinct types of soldiers in Iraq (nearly wrote 'Nam). The lifers, who are the warrior class you speak of, and the reservists, who in many cases chose that path because it paid for college and came with good government benefits. The people in the latter group tell me that the mission in Iraq was to drive around in trucks and various other vehicles until they got blown up and either killed or sent home maimed. There was no clear end game in sight, no strategy, just a low level sort of constant chaos.
The warriors truly believe in the war and tell me that the Iraqis love them being there, and that they are told that every day by them. I tell them "what other choice do they have?" It's the smart thing to do for them to say "we love you" because the men standing in front of them each could kill 100 Iraqis as they stand and with a radio call could call in an airstrike even more devastating. So it makes sense to make guys with that much destructive power feel wanted. But I don't really believe Iraqi civs love them half as much as the warriors believe.
The reservists, on the other hand, especially the Stop-Loss ones on their fourth or fifth tour just want to go home to see if their kids still recognize them and if their job is still there. Lots of employers have been finding very clever ways to circumvent the laws that require them to hold the jobs of reservists open. Common sense says when you are away from work for four or five years, you've fallen off the promotion path and into limbo.

We can ALWAYS find enough work for the warrior class. The world has never been in a state of universal peace. But I get your point. Lifers also love war because it gives them a chance for faster promotions than peace time allows for.

Agreed. It's a sticky-wicket. Unions and corporations are quite different animals, though, and I think one has to be very careful when comparing the two. No union could possible hope to build a war-chest the size of Verizon's, Comcast or Wal-mart. Despite the claims, we're talking about two different things. I don't think unions should be able to donate to campaigns either, but then I never bought into the theory that money and free speech are the same.

It's a perversion of process. Lawmakers *should* be able to make hard decisions for the long term. Instead they jump on anything they can pander to bring in votes. We have a bad situation in that incumbents mostly do things to ensure they'll stay in power, not necessarily things that are good and needed. It may be that all of California's problems can be traced back to Howard Jarvis's Prop 13 which basically said "we want Cadillac government services, but we don't way to pay for them with taxes."
http://www.calitics.com/diary/8965/howard-jarvisism-a-tale-told-by-an-idiot
Reaganomics, the belief that cutting taxes would stimulate growth forever, has similarly been exposed as a Ponzi scheme of sorts that ends up in the very bad state we are in now. Tax revenue has crashed along with the economy, and many local and state governments are on the ropes. Anyone who thinks we have sailed out of the iceberg infested waters of recession should remember the Titanic. If GM can fail, the whole country can, too.

While I support the right to own firearms, I might have to disagree with you on how to classify the NRA. Their voice will be heard, whether they can "buy" candidates or not. I'd prefer that they not. I'll just point out that there are a lot of liberals that talk gun control, but sleep with a Glock on the nightstand. I used to be one of them until I decided I wasn't going to conform to a checklist agenda.
I've already had one friend (who works in the Senate!) tell me "I can't have friends who aren't willing to support gun control and go gun-free." So be it. Yes, innocent people are killed too often with guns, but on more than one occasion, having one has undoubtedly saved my life. I can't turn my back on a "friend" I owe my continued existence to.
-- Bobby G.
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Whine on. I'll bet you were one of the guys like Harry Reid, proclaiming the war in Iraq is lost just a few years ago. Far from having no strategy or end game, it's winding down nicely. In fact, the course of the war would have been the same whether Obama or McCain was elected.

What a total crock. When Reagan came into office, the top federal tax rate was 70%. Combine that with state and local taxes and the most productive people had no incentive to produce or invest. Reagan cut that rate by more than half and a decade of malaise, high unemployment, and inflation were replaced by the re-birth of the American economy that was the envy of the world. And tax revenue did not decrease, it had a huge increase as the economy soared. While paying at a lower rate, far MORE federal revenue was coming in. The deficits of the Reagan years, which look like frugality compared to what Obama just did, were caused by large increases in SPENDING. And unlike today's spending, a lot of that money had a good purpose. It rebuilt our military, at a pace the Russians tried to match, but could not. That helped bankrupt them and end the Cold War, freeing hundreds of millions of people. But, for the usual reasons, I don't think Reagan will be getting a nobel prize. That honor is now reserved for those that are president for less than a month and those who make movies.
Only a liberal loon would try to lay Reagan cutting taxes off as a Ponzi scheme and never once mention out of control government spending, which is the real problem. Even under Clinton, the tax rates, though a little higher, were close to where Reagan had lowered them. And while I said for years the Republicans in Congress, together with Bush, should have been doing a lot more to reduce spending, the deficits under Bush were modest compared to what Obama and the boys are doing now. They like to point to the $1Tril plus deficit in the final year of the Bush administration and whine about how they inherited it. That is another total crock. Some $700bil of that deficit was the one time TARP money. It was NOT spending. It was loans to companies, used to buy stock, etc. Most of that has been paid back to the US treasury, including all of it by the major banks. Last time I checked, which was a long time ago, the treasury said that at most they had $180bil or so left that was still at risk.
Compare that to commrade Obama who is projecting $1 tril in deficits for the next DECADE. Was there a huge tax cut? I must have missed it. Of course the real source of that deficit is even more out of control spending that has been taken to a whole new level.

The checklist agenda explains a lot.
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Once the US pulls out of IRAQ it will have the civil war it needed all along. no doubt the tailban will try to take over, and the surrounding countries dont want democracy in the area, it mioght spread and depose them....
the sad fact both of these wars are unwinnable just like vietnam...........
a great example of federal stupidity and waste
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According to you, Mr. negativity. Sounds like Harry Reid, you're cheering for it to happen. Of course, it's just possible that it will turn out that it winds up a stable, peaceful country too. The civil war prospect looked a lot more likely 3 years ago than it does today.
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On Jun 26, 11:43am, snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

havent you noticed violence is up in iraq,as we leave areas violence increases. it will get fart worse once us combat troops have departed. pleas note i am just noting the violwence increase and have no control over whats going on
as to coal to gasoline consol coal said they would build the plants, but fear gasoline prices from crude could drop so low the idea would be a loser.
cant say i blame them but we really need energy indenpendence, besides the environmental disaster in the gulf.....
i dont expect congress to do much of anything the members are owned by big oil and other lobbyists, so big oil will get what it wants. no changes things are quite profitable as is
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On Sat, 26 Jun 2010 14:34:19 -0700 (PDT), " snipped-for-privacy@aol.com"

Vietnam was a War? What about Korea. was that a "war", won by one side or the other?
Update me, please.
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vietnam war? its constitently called that. over 50,000 americans died.
war protests .........
you are just trying to obscure the fact we lost the vietnam war... conflict or whatever you care to call it. lost, not won, all those died for nothing
now to iraq, the surrounding countries all dictator ruled DONT want democracy in their area. once we withdraw they and iran will fund and supply insurgents.
what would iran want more than a puppet government next door?
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snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

We did NOT lose the Vietnam war. The war was concluded by a peace treaty (for which Henry Kissinger was awarded a Nobel Peace Prize). It was over a year after the last U.S. troops left Viet Nam that the North Vietnamese rolled into Saigon.

Yep, you're right. But we HAVE planted the seeds of democracy in Iraq. Now we will water it with the blood of tyrants.
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