Does it Matter?

Benghazi Update: Britons and all other westerners were told to leave the Libyan city of Benghazi on Thursday after diplomats received warning of an “imminent” terror threat in the wake of the Algerian hostage siege.

By the way, “Was it because of a protest or was it because of guys out for a walk last night who decided to kill some Brits? What difference at this point does it make? 🙂

Michael Ramirez Cartoon

A day after President Obama vowed an aggressive global war on global warming, Nebraska Gov. Dave Heineman delivered a political hot potato to the White House in the form of state approval of a re-routed Keystone XL pipeline.

Given the pressing domestic need for a) more reliable sources of oil and b) thousands of long-delayed, good-paying jobs, you might think federal approval of the endeavor with our closest neighbor and best friend is a gimme.

Ah, but we are just three days past the middle of the 2,922-day Obama era. So, it’s much more complicated.

The 1,700-mile long pipeline is designed to carry 700,000 barrels a day of Canadian heavy crude oil from Alberta tar sands excavations to Gulf Coast refineries. The project would create thousands of construction jobs and reduce U.S. dependence on unreliable foreign oil sources, often cited by both American political parties as a good thing.

Heineman, a Republican, had rejected Trans-Canada’s original route through important aquifers and the state’s fragile Sand Hills region, a step the Obama crowd cited for its initial parallel rejection of the facility. A new study by the State Department, which must approve pipelines crossing international borders, isn’t due until late March at the earliest.

By that time, of course, the Obama administration will have a new secretary of State in the form of John Kerry. The about-to-be-former senator has fallen hook, line and sailboat for the global warming bunkum, making approval appear iffy.

Environmentalists, who plan a White House pipeline protest next month, claim the extraction and combustion of such oil volumes would contribute catastrophically to global warming.

Unfortunately for that argument, it’s not like a pipeline defeat will keep that oil in Canadian soil. It will just be exported through another pipeline to the West Coast for sale to China, while alienating the United States’ best neighbor, closest ally and largest trading partner.

Both Republican congressional leaders sought to add approval pressure on Obama Tuesday. Said Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell:

“The President says he’s for an all-of-the-above approach to energy and now it’s time for him to live up to it. Nebraska has taken care of the issues the President raised when he denied the permit, so there’s no more room for excuses or delays and it should be expeditiously approved.”

Added House Speaker John Boehner:

“Nebraska’s approval of a new Keystone XL pipeline route means there is no bureaucratic excuse, hurdle, or catch President Obama can use to delay this project any further. He and he alone stands in the way of tens of thousands of new jobs and energy security.

“Every state along the proposed route supports this project, as does a bipartisan coalition in Congress and a majority of Americans. I recognize all the political pressure the president faces, but with our energy security at stake and many jobs in limbo, he should find a way to say yes.”

In his inaugural address Monday Obama gave numerous nods to his liberal base. “We will respond to the threat of climate change,” he said, “knowing that the failure to do so would betray our children and future generations.”

His full text and a complete C-SPAN video are available here.

But the Democrat, who has only 1,458 days left in office, also called for large-scale investments in the nation’s infrastructure to stimulate new jobs and rebuild the country after a decade of war-drained finances.

Although Obama has never appeared bothered by adding some $6 trillion so far to the national debt, now north of $16.3 trillion, the job-creating pipeline expenditures would be private.

So, do you think Obama will choose to come down in favor of his jobs vow or his environmental vow?

Given Obama’s long record of, shall we say, flexible vow-keeping, the answer is most likely, Yes. (IBD)

🙂

After all, he raised the payroll tax on everyone but it was the same as 2 years ago so he didn’t “increase” it.
🙂

So expect doublespeak and much gnashing of someone elses teeth and blaming someone else for it.
That is only if they can’t just ignore it all together.
What does it Matter? 🙂
Political Cartoons by Chuck Asay

Political Cartoons by Jerry Holbert
 Political Cartoons by Gary Varvel

Political Cartoons by Glenn Foden

 Political Cartoons by Chip Bok

But at least it’s not OIL!

Political Cartoons by Gary Varvel

“It’s the easiest thing in the world (to) make phony election-year promises about lower gas prices,” Obama said. “What’s harder is to make a serious, sustained commitment to tackle a problem that may not be solved in one year or one term or even one decade.”

It’s not my fault!! Don’t blame Me!

And Oil will never solve the problem so let’s concentrate on pie-in-sky, economically non-viable solutions instead! And when you call me on it I will use bogus statistics that “show” I’m not doing just that!!!

Unless you’re a Democrat and the President is a Republican, especially one named Bush, then it’s entirely their Fault!

So Obama trotted out yet another ANYTHING BUT OIL liberal “feel good” Enviro-whacko fantasy: The trio of proposals announced in Miami included a $30 million competition in natural gas technologies and a $14 million program to development algae-based fuel.(which is a minimum of 10 years away from even competing- see below- let alone replacing)

None of this crap is economically viable, but at least it’s not OIL! 🙂

“We’re making new investments in the development of gasoline, diesel ($4 a gallon here in Phoenix) , and jet fuel that’s actually made from a plant-like substance, algae — you’ve got a bunch of algae out here,” Obama said at the University of Miami today. “If we can figure out how to make energy out of that, we’ll be doing alright.

IF!!!!! Yeah and IF I could figure out how to win the Lottery and look like Hugh Jackman and retire as a multi-millionaire the world would be a better place! 🙂

So I think I’ll devote the rest of my life to making that happen and ignore reality. Fantasy is so much better and makes me “feel” so much better. 🙂

Believe it or not, we could replace up to 17 percent of the oil we import for transportation with this fuel that we can grow right here in America.”

IF it Works! IF it’s viable! IF it’s compatible! In 20-30 years and after trillions of dollars of Solyndras.

But at least it’s not OIL!

Obama did not say when he expected algae-based fuel to reach that level, but the federal government has a dodgy track record with respect to developing alternative vehicle fuels. Biodiesel, for example, accounted for less than 1 percent of the diesel fuel market as of 2008, according to the Energy Information Administration. And of course there’s ethanol — after four decades, tens of billions of dollars in subsidies, and draconian mandates that force it on unwilling consumers, ethanol was five percent of vehicle consumption (by volume) as of 2008. Although algae-to-gas is a very different idea, it is still in its early stages.

I did blogs about famines in other parts of the world because so much corn was being used up for the then-latest NOT OIL Liberal fantasy.

But it’s not Obama’s fault! Remember that. 🙂

Oil is what makes the world run, but Liberal hate it, so they’ll do everything they can to avoid it without appearing to do so because that’s bad politics.

Just remember, when you fill up your car and it cost $60,70,$80, $90, $100 to do it it’s The Republicans fault!! 🙂

Oil industry leaders reject Obama’s claim to have given significant support to oil production. “These have been the most difficult three years from a policy standpoint that I’ve ever seen in my career,” Bruce Vincent, president of Swift Energy, an oil and gas company in Houston, said yesterday. “They’ve done nothing but restrict access and delay permitting.”

The Ministry of Truth has a Lot of work to do! 🙂

The Washington Examiner’s Michael Barone argues that he hasn’t been consistent even on that front. “We’ve prohibited a pipeline, the safest way to transport oil, from Canada, but we’re aiding Mexico in offshore drilling, which is riskier, and by a firm that lacks the experience of the U.S. firms we have been trying to prevent drilling in the same body of water,” Barone wrote yesterday. “Does this make any sense at all?”

And we are subsidizing Brazil. It just so happens that Petrogas in Brazil is partially owned by Democrat Uber-contributor George Soros.

Nothing to see here. Except Cronyism. 🙂

Speaking of Crony Capitalism: Solyndra

Nearly two dozen employees of the solar panel maker that got a $535 million federal loan guarantee shortly before bankruptcy got $368,500 in bonuses Wednesday from a federal bankruptcy judge — in spite of the company failing to disclose it gave several of the raises of as much as 70% months earlier, after it went bankrupt.

The Washington Times noted a lawyer representing fired Solyndra workers has argued the company’s liquidation benefits few beyond Argonaut Ventures, part of a foundation run by Obama fundraiser George Kaiser.

Other Solyndras are coming to light, the latest being Sapphire Energy. Its pond-scum-based biofuel still costs over $26 a gallon, but that doesn’t matter when your executives give almost solely to Democrats.

The Washington Free Beacon reports that after $104.5 million in stimulus and other Energy and Agriculture Department funds for a New Mexico facility, it can boast just 36 new jobs. UC Berkeley’s Energy Biosciences Institute says it’ll take a decade before we know if algae-based fuel can compete with gas.

The Washington Post recently found “$3.9 billion in federal grants and financing flowed to 21 companies backed by firms with connections to five Obama administration staffers and advisers.”

Revelations of Obama’s green waste and corruption may have only just begun. (IBD)

The Great Obama Whoppers

IBD: The White House billed President Obama’s energy policy speech as a response to mounting criticism of record high gas prices. What he delivered was a grab bag of excuses and outright falsehoods.

Obama’s main message to struggling motorists was: It’s not my fault, so stop whining. The speech only got worse from there, recycling excuses and myths that Obama’s peddled for years. But there were some standout whoppers that deserve debunking. The five biggest:

“We’re focused on production.”

Fact: While production is up under Obama, this has nothing to do with his policies, but is the result of permits and private industry efforts that began long before Obama occupied the White House.

Obama has chosen almost always to limit production. He canceled leases on federal lands in Utah, suspended them in Montana, delayed them in Colorado and Utah, and canceled lease sales off the Virginia coast.

His administration also has been slow-walking permits in the Gulf of Mexico, approving far fewer while stretching out review times, according to the Greater New Orleans Gulf Permit Index. The Energy Dept. says Gulf oil output will be down 17% by the end of 2013, compared with the start of 2011. Swift Energy President Bruce Vincent is right to say Obama has “done nothing but restrict access and delay permitting.”

“The U.S. consumes more than a fifth of the world’s oil. But we only have 2% of the world’s oil reserves.”

Fact: Obama constantly refers to this statistic to buttress his claim that “we can’t drill our way to lower gas prices.” The argument goes that since the U.S. supply is limited, it won’t ever make a difference to world prices.

It’s bogus. New exploration and drilling technologies have uncovered vast amounts of recoverable oil.

In fact, the U.S. has a mind-boggling 1.4 trillion barrels of oil, enough to “fuel the present needs in the U.S. for around 250 years,” according to the Institute for Energy Research. The problem is the government has put most of this supply off limits.

“Because of the investments we’ve made, the use of clean, renewable energy in this country has nearly doubled.”

Fact: Production of renewable energy — biomass, wind, solar and the like — climbed just 12% between 2008 and 2011, according to the federal Energy Information Administration.

“We need to double-down on a clean energy industry that’s never been more promising.”

Fact: Renewable energy simply won’t play an important role in the country’s energy picture anytime soon, accounting for just 13% of U.S. energy production by 2035, according to the EIA.

“There are no short-term silver bullets when it comes to gas prices.”

Fact: Obama could drive down oil prices right now simply by announcing a more aggressive effort to boost domestic supplies. When President Bush lifted a moratorium in 2008, oil prices immediately fell $9 a barrel.

Obama said in his speech that Americans aren’t stupid. He’s right about that, which is why most are giving his energy policy a thumbs down.

So The Ministry of Truth has EVEN more work to do.

So don’t worry, Be Happy. Your grandkids will be free of OIL!

Possibly…Maybe…Probably Not…But it will make you feel good thinking it will happen.

Enjoy!

Michael Ramirez Cartoon

Political Cartoons by Lisa Benson

Political Cartoons by Chuck Asay

Winning The Future (WTF)

Political Cartoons by Bob Gorrell

When the President addresses the Congress and the Nation and presents his real budget just remember, “tax expenditures” means tax increase.

So the budget the President put out in February was a Fake!!

Boy no one saw that coming. 🙂

https://indyfromaz.wordpress.com/2011/02/14/the-tactical-budget/
https://indyfromaz.wordpress.com/2011/02/15/the-tactical-budget-ii/

https://indyfromaz.wordpress.com/2011/02/16/the-tactical-budget-iii/

https://indyfromaz.wordpress.com/2011/02/17/the-tactical-budget-iv/

Certainly not me. 🙂

The Republican released a plan.
Now The Follower-in-Chief has a plan!!

Now that his opposition has put out their plan and the left has savaged it like a pack of piranhas as heartless and cruel.
Now he will propose his budget for real, the one that the liberal intelligensia and liberal media will fawn all over.
It will have tax increases that won’t be called taxes increases. This is a great idea.
Class Warfare will certainly be enough to pay down a $14 Trillion debt.
Cut spending without cutting spending.

It will be his usual pie-in-the-sky non-specifics so he can weasel out of them at any moment.

But it will sound good, at least to the slobbering left.

Just remember, according to recent reports 48% of Americans pay no taxes now! and more than 50% are on the government dole.

Oh, and the evil “rich” pay the most taxes. So let’s tax them EVEN MORE.

In this global economy they won’t just pack up and go somewhere else.

Political Cartoons by Mike Lester

Tax Year 2008

Percentiles Ranked by AGI AGI Threshold on Percentiles Percentage of Federal Personal Income Tax Paid
Top 1% $380,354 38.02
Top 5% $159,619 58.72
Top 10% $113,799 69.94
Top 25% $67,280 86.34
Top 50% $33,048 97.30
Bottom 50% <$33,048 2.7
Note: AGI is Adjusted Gross Income
Source: Internal Revenue Service

But don’t worry, rich people don’t pay their fair share!

And the liberals purport to protect the middle class are squeezing them with the price of gas and food price inflation.
But the solution is to spend even more and buy a newer car.
What a solution!!
When you are making less and paying more, SPEND MORE.
Sounds very Liberal…
Now that’s “Hope and Change” 

Political Cartoons by Gary Varvel

Thomas Sowell: Someone once said that taxes are the price we pay for civilization. That may have been true when he said it, but today taxes are mostly the price we pay so that politicians can play Santa Claus and get reelected.

That’s not the worst of it. We may think of taxes as just a source of government revenue. But tax rates are a big political statement on the left, whether they bring in any revenue or not.

For more than 80 years, the political left has opposed what they call “tax cuts for the rich.” But big cuts in very high tax rates ended up bringing in more revenue to the government in the Coolidge, Kennedy, Reagan and Bush 43 administrations. This included more– repeat, more– tax revenue from people in the highest income brackets than before.

That was because high-income people took their money out of tax shelters like municipal bonds and invested where they could get a higher rate of return, after these returns were not being taxed as much. This has happened repeatedly, over so many decades, in administrations of both parties, that you might think this would put an end to the “tax cuts for the rich” demagoguery.

But the same rhetoric that “progressives” like Senator Bob La Follette used against tax cuts in the 1920s is still going strong in the 21st century. When you point out to today’s “progressives” that “the rich” paid more total tax revenue to the government after what were called “tax cuts for the rich,” that doesn’t make a dent.

After all, “the rich” paid that larger sum of taxes only because their incomes had risen. Their paying a higher share of all taxes doesn’t matter to the “progressives,” who see high tax rates as a way to take a bigger bite out of the incomes of higher-income people, not just provide more revenue to the government.

Tax rates are meant to make an ideological statement and promote class-warfare politics, not just bring in revenue.

There has been much indignation on the left over the recent news that General Electric paid no taxes, despite its large amounts of profit. But another way of looking at this is that high tax rates on paper do not mean high tax revenues for the government.

The liberal answer to budget deficits is almost always to raise tax rates on “the rich,” in order to bring in more revenue. The fact that higher tax rates have often brought in less revenue than before is simply ignored.

Our corporate tax rates are higher than in many other countries. That may have something to do with the fact that many American corporations (including General Electric) expand their operations in many other countries, providing jobs– and tax revenues– in those other countries.

But high-tax ideologues don’t see it that way. They would be horrified at the idea that we ought to lower our corporate tax rates, just so that more American businesses would do more of their business at home, providing more Americans with much-needed jobs.

To ideologues, that is just a cop-out from the class-warfare battle. It is far more important to them to score their political points against “the rich” or “Wall Street” than that a few million more Americans out of work would be able to find jobs.

The idealism of the left is a very selfish idealism. In their war against “the rich” and big business, they don’t care how much collateral damage there is to workers who end up unemployed.

It so happens that many– if not most– of those called “the rich” are not rich and many, if not most, of those called “the poor” are not poor. They are people who happen to be in a particular part of the income stream as of a given moment in their lives when statistics are collected.

Internal Revenue Service data show that the income of people who were in the lowest income tax bracket in 1996 rose by 91 percent by 2005. But people in the “top one percent” had their incomes drop by 26 percent in those same years.

There is nothing complicated about this. Most people simply start at the bottom when they are young and their pay rises as they get more experience. Most people in the top one percent are there for only a single year when they happen to have a spike in income. They too are not an enduring class.

The time is long overdue to start thinking about taxes as sources of revenue, not as ways of making political statements.

Political Cartoons by Robert Ariail

Political Cartoons by Chuck Asay

Political Cartoons by Dana Summers