scharrison's blog

Offshore Drilling: The Conversation Continues

With a nod to the recent drop in the price of light sweet crude (I'm not going to say I told you so, but...I told you so) and the mad dash by producers to slow production to counteract said drop in price, I thought I would (once again) try to focus attention on the environmental impact of offshore drilling. In a near-future where Global Climate Change will already be jeopardizing the continued survival of some 1/4 to 1/3 of the world's species, we can no longer afford to be cavalier in our environmental behavior.

Back to the current price of oil for a minute:

Neocon War Machine Attacks Kay Hagan

I'm sure I'm not the only one reading this who just received a robo-call from "Freedom's Watch" attacking Kay Hagan for her stance on illegal immigration. But that call has absolutely nothing to do with illegal immigrants and everything to do with their fear that Kay won't be a puppet like Liddy Dole, helping them wage perpetual war in an effort to establish an American Empire.

Although Freedom's Watch was established in 2007 to promote the surge in Iraq, it's basically a construct to continue promoting the views and goals of PNAC (in exile) and the hawkish, ultra-right pro-Israel lobby:

The Truth Behind Dole's Fannie Mae Reform Attempt

The most recent whine coming from Republicans is centered around their alleged attempt to "reign in" Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac back in 2005, and the Democrats' blocking of such. I should have looked closer at this sooner, because there's always something that stinks just under the surface of these "valiant" efforts. Anyway, here's the deal:

Conservatives and Free Market fundies have historically been opposed to GSEs (Government Sponsored Enterprises) for a few basic reasons: they target assistance to groups the government deems "in need" of assistance, and the profits/losses of said enterprises are controlled by the public (as opposed to private industry). The former is viewed as an entitlement, and the latter makes it difficult for private enterprises to compete with the GSEs.

Ukraine, NATO and Corporate Foreign Policy

Although the debate Friday night did expose some stark differences between the two candidates for President, there are some areas they both come close to agreement on. Unfortunately, it doesn't necessarily follow that this consensus represents a solid policy position that will forward America's future. I am referring specifically to Barack Obama's stated desire to see Ukraine's accession to NATO successfully realized, which I believe is just one in a long line of wrong-headed and downright dangerous foreign policy moves.

Liddy's Money Part Three: The Bush Cabal

Much has been said about Elizabeth Dole's voting record in the Senate being strongly supportive of President George Bush's misguided policies, and that is a legitimate issue by itself. But I believe her behavior as a party apparatchik and deal facilitator has had a much more profound impact on the way our country operates and the direction in which our tax dollars flow. And the more North Carolinians are exposed to the truth about her dealings, the more likely they will realize that she's a salesperson to the moneyed elite, as opposed to a public servant.

McCain and the March of the Emperor Neocons

Inspired by tomorrow's inclusion of a hate propaganda DVD in the Raleigh News & Observer's Saturday Edition, I decided to (once again) try to bring focus to the most important factor in the upcoming national election: whether or not we will allow the empire-builders to continue taking our country down their delusional path to world dominance. And I chose the title (and picture) for a reason: unless their progress is arrested, they will slowly and methodically continue until they reach their objective.

Sustainable Development Part Five: Greenbridge

Very often here at BlueNC, we focus on the things that people are doing wrong. Which is cool, because being progressive means that we eschew complacency and believe in taking active measures to "fix" the things that need fixing. But we also need to recognize progress when it happens, as it demonstrates that our "hope for the future" is neither naive nor in vain.

Sustainable Development Part Four: Large-Scale Hydro

Amidst all the talk these days about meeting our current and future energy demands, hydroelectric power is often merely mentioned in passing, as if it's potential is limited and not as deserving of "excitement" as wind or Solar power. Part of this stems from a basic misunderstanding of the economics of large-scale hydro, while another part is rooted in a justifiable concern about the environmental impacts of these projects. I am also aware that this diary may generate some negative responses, so don't worry about hurting my feelings. :)

The Misinformation Age: or, Where's My Grain of Salt?

Most people consider themselves fairly well-informed, and are not likely to admit that they (personally) are vulnerable to manipulation. Those other people are, of course, but not me. And while we might think we carefully "choose" the sources of our information, our brains often store and edit things according to a different set of often less "enlightened" rules. Whatever. It's part of our psychological makeup, and not likely to change any time soon.

Liddy's Money Part Two: The Neocon War Machine

Triggered by a debate I've been engaged in over at Ed Cone's place about the current Russia/Georgia conflict, I decided to go ahead and publish some thoughts I've been processing on Elizabeth Dole's relationship to the Military Industrial Complex and the rule-the-world Neocon chickenhawks.

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