Quote of the Day “I’m T Boone Pickens. I’ve been an oil man all my life. But this is one problem we can’t drill our way out of.” — T. Boone Pickens, Oilman, Swift Boater
I really don’t like politics. I wish I could look away. I wish I could ignore it, because thinking about it tends to ruin at least that part of my day. But I can’t help it sometimes, so bear with me today.
Most of the readers of this blog are in Mississippi or at least the Deep South and you all understand how out of the mainstream of non-trial lawyer white folks liberal politics are around here. One day I may post about the process that led me to leave the ranks of red staters, but today I just want to highlight four events that I’ve read about over the last twenty-four hours and why it is stories like these and not which nut job preacher has ties to which politician that should determine our voting decisions. I’m not linking, but google the subjects and you will find the sources easy enough.
First I read a CNN account about household supplies and clothing that were DONATED to Mississippians and handled by FEMA. That’s FEMA, a part of the Republican Executive Branch. Millions of dollars worth of goods sat in a warehouse for 3 years, then were given away to governmental agencies. Millions of dollars were spent on storage during that time and while I don’t know what political party those warehouse owners were in, I have a damn good guess. I had friends that lost almost everything they had. Most have never and never will be compensated by Insurance, FEMA, Grant money, or charity for the goods they lost. They were partially compensated for their structural losses. They could’ve used a blender or some cutlery or some blue jeans and could’ve put the money they spent on those things toward rebuilding their houses. Or replacing their furniture. Maybe some poor kids wouldn’t have been poisoned by formaldehyde if their folks had a bit more cash on hand to afford the skyrocketing rent costs of an apartment.
Which brings me to story number two. Republicans in the House said manufacturers of FEMA trailers were not at fault for formaldehyde levels because the government had not regulated those levels. Read that over again carefully. The very regulatory agencies the Republicans have gutted and politicized did exactly what the Cons wanted done–nothing. And because of this, these businesses, which made millions supplying defective trailers should not be held responsible for the injuries they’ve caused. To add insult to injury, guess what party the Judges sympathize with that will hear these cases stemming from the Mississippi Coast.
Then I get an email from CEO’s of 12 major US airlines. They tell me the price of oil is out of hand and its largely due to speculators echoing one of the mantras I’ve been hearing from the Lefties. They complain that due to market deregulation–a tenet of Republi-con-ism–the price of a barrel of oil is falsely inflated anywhere from 30 to 60 bucks a pop. I’m still processing the idea that airline CEO’s are calling for INCREASED government oversight and regulation.
And finally, T. Boone Pickens is spending some of his billions to tell us we cannot drill our way out of the oil crisis. He’s pushing wind energy and I agree with him. Bush, Cheney, McCain and the other Cons disagree completely. They want more drilling and that’s all they want. Look, I’m not opposed to developing oil in the US and if they find a gusher under my house I’ll tear the place down overnight to get to it. But in my opinion finding more oil is only a temporary and partial solution at best.
These stories are just a microcosm of why the Cons have to be punished in November. It seems there is more justification to rid ourselves of them and their beloved “wedge” issues every day. If you disagree with T. Boone and the CEO’s and CNN and Travellinbaen on these issues, maybe you should vote Republican and McCain. On the other hand, if you think there are things in the world of greater import than loudmouth preachers maybe consider giving the liberals a chance. Truth be told, we need somebody to come in and try some radical ideas and my biggest concern is the Dems have gotten too corporate over the years to really do enough. But anything is better than the debacle that has been the Bush Presidency. I tell you, when T Boone and the cigar boys start to worry about the times, Travellinbaen takes note.