Obama wanted to ban gun stores within five miles of schools and parks?

Al Sadr Forming New Fighting Force To Attack Americans – “Those Who Disobey Will Not Be With Me”

The Climate Alarmist Manifesto

The Climate Alarmist Manifesto

By Marc Sheppard

Just as class struggle forms the nucleus of Marxism, so does it sit at the very core of the Left’s climate alarmism.  At a glance, the regressive nature of fiscal Carbon control schemes, be they taxation or cap-and-trade, would appear to be antithetical to liberal thinking.  But beneath the veneer of both the domestic and international green agenda lies a devious wealth-redistribution plan compared to which all predecessors pale.

Take, for instance, the recently tabled Lieberman-Warner Bill.  The Act would have empowered government to control key aspects of — while extracting trillions of dollars from — our economy by forcing the auction of greenhouse gas (GHG) credits upon industry and power companies.  And, while the left lauds penalizing bourgeois “big business” success, advocates for the poor were quick to point out that the inescapable consequent increase in energy costs across the board (electricity, home heating, gasoline, etc) would have placed a disproportionate burden upon proletarian lower wage-earners.


Ah, but the Democrats — champions of the downtrodden that they are — were just as quick to respond.  Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works chair Barbara Boxer (D-CA) offered a substitute amendment bearing her name, Subtitle I of which provided “Financial Relief for Consumers” as follows:


“The bill sets aside a nearly $800 billion tax relief fund through 2050, which will help consumers in need of assistance related to energy costs. The precise details of the relief will be developed by the Finance committee.”


And if Senator Boxer’s plan of doling out $800 billion in industry profits to the “needy” sounds like class warfare to you, just wait until you hear what’s brewing down the hall. 


Late last month, chairman of the Special House Committee On Global Warming, Rep. Edward J. Markey (D-MA), unveiled even harsher climate change legislation.  Unlike Lieberman-Warner, which would have at least eased industry and power companies into compliance over time, Markey’s bill would require permits for virtually all emissions right from day one, in a crazy effort to roll atmospheric CO2 back to levels 85 percent below 2005 by 2050 (that’s 15% more than even the doomed Senate bill). 


Also unlike its Senate counterpart, Markey’s Investing in Climate Action and Protection Act (ICAP) requires no amendments to begin redistributing the profits of domestic commerce.  Actually, Subtitle A: Climate Trust Tax Credits and Rebates is quite clear in describing how $4.3 trillion (which represents an estimated 55 to 58.5% of auction proceeds) will:


“be used for refundable tax credits and rebates for middle- and low-income households, to compensate for any increase in energy costs resulting from the bill. Tax credits will be used to reach middle-income wage earners and senior citizens, and cash rebates — distributed through the Electronic Benefits Transfer systems used for food stamps — will be used to reach low-income households. All households earning under $110,000 will be eligible. Virtually all costs from climate regulation will be covered for households earning under $70,000, with benefit levels phasing out gradually for households earning $70,000 to $110,000.”


Of course, under the cloak of a “market-based” solution, cap-and-trade’s government command-and-control system is, as George Will so brilliantly describes it, already nothing more than “a huge tax hidden in a bureaucratic labyrinth of opaque permit transactions.”  Adding unabashedly obvious wealth-redistribution to the formula merely strips any façade of capitalism’s skeleton beneath. 


It seems that giddy anticipation of further power gains next year — combined with hope of the most liberal among them living in the White House — has caused many Dems to lower their guard with respect to their aims.  Just last month, before a House Judiciary Committee, Maxine Waters apparently cared little for Shell Oil President John Hofmeister’s response to her questions about guaranteeing a drop in oil prices were he allowed to drill off US shores.  Visibly flustered, the California Democrat let slip to an astonished audience:


“And guess what this liberal would be all about? This liberal would be all about socialize — uh, uh, would be about basically taking over and the government running all of your companies.”


What still escapes me is just why anyone might be surprised by her faux-pas.  Such is precisely the Left’s rationale for jumping aboard the bogus GHG bandwagon in such earnest almost to the very man and woman.


In the section Das Klima Kapital of my recent piece celebrating the death of Lieberman-Warner for its lack of scientific merit, I also pointed out why cap-and-trade is the perfect liberal synergy of environmentalism and socialism:


“In 1867, Karl Marx argued that capitalism’s cycle of labor exploitation could not endlessly sustain itself and would ultimately be its doom. Modern greenies insist that capitalism’s cycle of environmental exploitation will not endlessly sustain itself and will ultimately be not only its doom — but the entire planet’s.”


But, indeed, the reach of this ecosocialism extends far beyond our borders.


Internationally, the Left has always accused capitalist western nations of growing fat through the exploitation of poorer countries.  And they now argue that those same fat-cat nations have exploited the planet to the brink of doom, also to the simultaneous exclusion and detriment of those less fortunate.


And for their imaginary sins of both economic and ecological abuse at both the national and global level, liberal-elitists have decreed that now is the time for the successful to atone. Translation: “developed” nations must not only clean up their own mess, but also pay to help “undeveloped” nations clean up theirs.


Much as Vladmir Lenin promised in 1920 that centralized electrification and “advanced technology” would abolish “the division between town and country” and “conquer completely and decisively the backwardness of the countryside, its scattered economy and its ignorance,” so do the ecosocialists plan to uplift “developing nations.”  But unlike the first soviet leader’s GOELRO project, which coalesced Russian scientists and peasant cooperatives to bring modernizing power to their own country, contemporary ecosocialists would simply play Robin Hood with the wealth and patented technology of “prosperous” nations under the false pretense of “saving the planet.”


Through Carbon trading, taxes, mandatory “clean energy” technology transfers, and other austere regulations, proposed UN-controlled international climate treaties to succeed Kyoto would penalize wealthy, innovative, capitalist countries while subsidizing poorer nations with waivers and foreign aid.  And with most “good governance” requirements for beneficiary nations lifted, this equates to coerced underwriting of military regimes, dictatorships and, of course, socialists.    


In his 1875 Critique of the Gotha Program, Marx defined the basis for a communist society with the words “from each according to his ability, to each according to his need.”   What a marvelous creed for today’s climate alarmists, who would steal from flourishing countries, enterprises and citizens in order to give to those they deem chronically underprivileged.  And, by spreading their woefully unproven yet widely accepted GHG horror stories, would do so on a global level that Marx and Lenin themselves dared only dream of.   And would wield more centralized control of international economies than either ever dared envision.  


In his book, Blue Planet in Green Shackles, Vaclav Klaus wrote:


“The largest threat to freedom, democracy, the market economy and prosperity at the beginning of the 21st century is no longer socialism. It is, instead, the ambitious, arrogant, unscrupulous ideology of environmentalism.”


With all due respect to the wise Czech President, they are indeed one in the same.


Marc Sheppard is a frequent contributor to American Thinker and welcomes your feedback.

Greens Thwart Gasoline Production

Greens Thwart Gasoline Production

By Steven Milloy
Fox News | 6/13/2008

Four-plus-dollar gasoline is forcing Americans to realize that we need increased domestic oil production to meet our ever-growing demand for affordable fuel. But even if the greens lose the political battle over drilling offshore and in places like the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, they nevertheless are way ahead of the game as they implement a back-up plan to make sure that not a drop of that oil ever eases our gasoline crunch.  

The Sierra Club and the Natural Resources Defense Council, or NRDC, successfully pressured the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to block ConocoPhillips’ expansion of its Roxana, Ill., gasoline refinery, which processes heavy crude oil from Canada, the Wall Street Journal reported on Monday.

The project would have expanded the volume of Canadian crude processed from 60,000 barrels per day to more than 500,000 barrels a day by 2015. After the Illinois EPA had approved the expansion, the green groups petitioned the federal EPA to block it, alleging ConocoPhillips wasn’t using the best available technology for reducing emissions of sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxides.

Apparently, the plant’s planned 95 percent reduction in sulfur dioxide emissions and 25 percent reduction in nitrogen oxides wasn’t green enough. NRDC’s opposition is quite ironic since ConocoPhillips and the activist group actually are teammates in the global warming game. Both belong to the U.S. Climate Action Partnership, a coalition of eco-activist groups and large companies that is lobbying for global warming regulation.

So even though ConocoPhillips is aiding and abetting the NRDC to achieve the green dream of absolute government control over the U.S. energy supply, the enviros still are in take-no-prisoners mode, refusing to allow the expansion of a single refinery.

Imagine what the rest of us can expect from the greens.

Meanwhile, in California, green groups are working through the state attorney general’s office to block the upgrade of the Chevron refinery in the city of Richmond. The $800 million upgrade essentially would expand the useable oil supply by permitting the refinery to process lower-quality, less-expensive crude oil.

California Attorney General, ex-Gov. and climate crusader Jerry Brown claims the upgrade will produce an additional 900,000 tons of greenhouse gas emissions per year. But Chevron says the upgrade actually will reduce the emissions by 220,000 tons.

Whose figure is closer to the truth?

It’s hard to know for sure at this point, but it’s worth noting that material false statements made by Chevron are prosecutable under the federal securities laws and California state law, while Brown and the activists pretty much can say whatever they want without legal accountability.

Whatever the facts are, Brown and the city of Richmond insist that Chevron eliminate 900,000 tons of greenhouse gas emissions so that the upgrade will be “carbon neutral.” While the greens remain vehemently opposed to the project, it seems their plans for blocking the refinery might go awry as Brown and the local government eventually may side with Chevron rather than the greens, but only because the company has deep pockets and is open to being shaken down.

Brown and the city have proposed that Chevron ensure that half the total emissions-reduction projects be undertaken on-site at the refinery and the other half be done either in the city of Richmond itself or elsewhere in California.

Translating the latter part of this “offer that can’t be refused:” Chevron essentially must purchase 450,000 tons of “carbon credits” annually from the city of Richmond or the state. As the street value of carbon credits is about $10 per ton, Chevron is being “green-mailed” to the tune of perhaps $4.5 million per year to upgrade its refinery — amounting to perhaps a 1 percent annual “tax” on the gains in gross revenue produced by the upgrade. And the local government officials are not the least embarrassed about this extortion.

“When you’re dealing with a refinery where the project will cost close to a billion dollars and someone like Chevron with tremendous resources, that’s not a constraint, so they should do everything possible,” an unidentified state official told Carbon Control News in a June 9 article.

The farcical nature of the entire transaction is underscored by that state official’s apparent lack of understanding about how greenhouse gas-induced global warming is supposed to work.

The official told Carbon Control News that the greenhouse gas emission reductions “are vital to protect low-income minority communities in the Richmond area, which already suffer disproportionate pollution impacts.”

Climate alarmism, of course, is based on the notion of global emissions causing global warming, not local emissions causing local warming; moreover, the allegation that low-income minority populations are disproportionately harmed by industrial emissions — the basis of the so-called “environmental justice” concept of the 1990s — hasn’t stuck since no scientific evidence supports it.

Though green and local government shenanigans can be a source of endless amusement, let’s get back to the main point. As the 2005 hurricane season dramatized, oil production, itself, is only one factor in determining gasoline supply and prices.

Damage to Gulf Coast refineries by hurricanes Katrina and Rita reduced gasoline supplies and increased prices worldwide — a real problem given that U.S. refineries operate at or near capacity thanks to other green constraints.

We may produce all the oil we need, but if we can’t refine it, then it won’t do much for reducing gasoline supply problems. So while working to expand domestic drilling, we’ll simultaneously need to expand domestic refining capacity.

It will be quite the Pyrrhic victory to finally produce oil from ANWR and then not be able to do anything with it.

Steven Milloy publishes JunkScience.com and DemandDebate.com. He is a junk science expert, advocate of free enterprise and an adjunct scholar at the Competitive Enterprise Institute.

Six Ways Obama Will Transform America

Six Ways Obama Will Transform America

By Floyd and Mary Beth Brown
FrontPageMagazine.com | 6/13/2008

What word does Barack Obama and his supporters keep chanting? “Change!” Like a drumbeat, Obama’s chant for change runs nonstop in an endless loop. But how does Obama want to change America if he becomes president? Here are six different areas he would like changed.

For starters, Obama received a 100 percent rating from NARAL (a pro-abortion group) in 2005, 2006, and 2007. Why do they hold him in such high esteem? Because he supports every pro-abortion bill that comes along. He wants tax dollars for abortions, he voted against notifying parents of minors about abortions, he supports partial-birth abortion, and he would withhold life-saving measures from babies born after botched abortions.

Obama wants no limits on abortion, ever, but he is completely out of step with the majority of Americans. For example, seven out of 10 are against partial-birth abortion — which is a brutal procedure in the second or third trimester of pregnancy in which babies are pulled feet-first from the womb, stabbed through the skull with a scissor-like instrument and their brains are sucked out via a strong suction tube. Afterwards the dead baby’s collapsed head is removed from the mother. As ugly as it is, and as it sounds, in Obama’s America it would be routinely done all the way up to the time of birth.

Secondly, Obama is glaringly weak on national security. He advocates negotiating with terrorists. One week after he told AIPAC, a pro-Israel group, that Jerusalem “must remain undivided,” he backpedaled, did a shameless about-face, and now declares that the status of Jerusalem will need to be negotiated in future talks. Obama naively wants to pull our troops out of Iraq without first ensuring stability in the area, which will put all of America at risk.

It has been less than four years since he became the junior senator from Illinois. Guess which foreign leaders have expressed their desire for him to win? Communist Fidel Castro recently called Obama, “the most progressive candidate to the U.S. presidency,” while an advisor from the terrorist group Hamas told WorldNetDaily, “We like Mr. Obama, and we hope that he will win the election.”

Third, Obama will dramatically raise taxes. In response to Bush’s 2008 State of the Union address, Obama said he is against tax cuts for Americans. “We heard the president say he wants to make tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans permanent, when we know that at a time of war and economic hardship, the last thing we need is a permanent tax cut for Americans who don’t need them and weren’t even asking for them.”

Prior to clinching the nomination he proposed what he would do with your money: “And the Bush tax cuts — people didn’t need them, and they weren’t even asking for them, and that is why they need to be less, so that we can pay for universal health care and other initiatives.”

This leads to change number four, socialized medicine. “Well, look, I believe in universal health care,” Obama said at a presidential debate last February. “Every expert has said that anybody who wants health care under my plan will be able to obtain it.” Obama likes to call it “universal health care” because it sounds more palatable than what it is: socialized medicine.

Change number five is education. His far-left voting record voices his beliefs about education. In 2003, he cast his vote in Illinois to allow “age appropriate” sex education to be taught in elementary school. Planned Parenthood and the ACLU also supported this legislation.

In Illinois, Obama also supported “free” taxpayer funded college tuition for students as long as they maintained a “B” average. This sounds nice, but where does the money come from? You, of course, with higher taxes.

Finally, change number six is an end to free trade. USA Today wrote about Obama’s plans: “Modifying or scrapping NAFTA wouldn’t create jobs or more skilled workers. The idea raises false hope and seeks to scapegoat Mexico and Canada.” The possibility of a President Obama is making Wall Street nervous and the stock market reflects it.

Remember, a favorite word liberals use to describe themselves is “progressive,” and this means change. Every time you hear the roar “change,” remember that this chant translates into elitist, left-wing, socialized change — change for which you will dearly pay.

Floyd and Mary Beth Brown are bestselling authors and speakers. Mary Beth’s latest book is featured at www.condibook.com. Together they maintain a blog at www.2minuteview.com.