The Juice Blog- All Politics, All the Time

As some of our more veteran readers have commented on, it would seem like our blog has been fairly silent in regards to political issues. Well, it’s time to tell the truth behind why this has happened. I am only speaking for myself, when I write that I was silenced by a right wing conspiracy led by and baseball writer George Will, who had discovered that I also work as a male prostitute, much like former White House reporter Jeff (Bulldog) Gannon. These righteous men told me they would expose my very lucrative, lubricative business, if I didn’t stop my political postings.

Well, I will no longer be silenced. I feel no shame, as my job has pleased so many wives of ultra-conservative men, who needed to know what life is like outside the missionary position. Sure, many of you just want to read about baseball, but dammit, I’m a man with a diversity of interests and sometimes I will need to illuminate on the political world. Here is my first installment in quite sometime.

It’s a joke that our country cares so little about conserving energy. Sure, SUV sales have slowed down slightly, because of higher gas prices, but we are still gluttonous in our thirst for the crude, crude. The savior to our desperate oily desires, according to the Republicans is drilling in the Alaskan wilderness. Now, I’m someone who believes in protecting our enviroment at (almost) all costs. I say almost, because sometimes you need to be pragmatic, especially when you have little political power. (see Democratic party)

If I would have been sitting on the Senate Energy Commission, I would have offered a compromise. I, Mr. Liberaltarian, would support your new drilling in Alaska, as long as part of the bill, we mandate raising our average fuel standards 3 mpg over the next 5 years. Now, would this have passed, considering the strong lobbies of the oil and automoblie industries? I don’t know, but it would have made for a great political issue for the Democrats to have on their side.

Americans are selfish pigs, who love to consume and don’t want to be told they can’t. This is a human trait, not just an American one. If Europeans had as much wide-open space in their countries, I have little doubt a majority of them would be driving Suburbans to their soccer practices. The Democrats have been the more responsible of the two parties on the issues of fuel and enviromental conservation, but they lose out on getting a majority of American voters on their sides, because they don’t frame the issue, pragmatically.

Are you better off, just because you feel righteous indignation over your bought and sold gaseous enemies, when they are the ones who are getting their agenda pushed through? It’s time for some classic Bill Clinton triangulation of Republican concepts, taking pieces of their proposals and then adding important things to them, which make sense to the voters. Ideological stances are good in debates, but have left the Democratic party in the sorry state it finds itself in today. The only way extremist will lose their power is if the moderates in both parties come together on issues like this which are generally what the vast majority of what Americans desire.

11 thoughts on “The Juice Blog- All Politics, All the Time

  1. 1.  agree quite strongly.

    and….when americans complain about the gas prices, they usually don’t realize that:

    1) prices in europe have been significantly higher for a LONG time.
    2) a nice chunk of the increase the past 2 years is because of the dollar’s decline in the world’s financial markets. and much of that is because of our deficit and irresponsible fiscal actions of our government.

  2. 2.  So, is “Long” your real name or your call-sign?

    The Dailyshow had a great segment on Bush’s recent speech on his energy plan. Pretty funny I suppose, if I wasn’t so worried.

  3. 4.  I am a conservative with a conservationist bent, and I am appalled by the lack of leadership for the last 30 years in so far as an energy policy. Part of our involvement in Iraq is due to oil (otherwise we would ignore that region like we ignore Africa). The arab oil embargo occurred 30 years ago. Since then, Carter, Reagan, Bush, Clinton and Bush have done very little. Sure we’ve raised Corporate Average Fuel Economy, but we left huge holes that you could drive a hummer through. Like tax rebates for heavy duty (work) trucks, that can be just well equiped SUVs. Or classifying the PT Cruiser as a truck (unless its a convertible, then its a car). Meanwhile, the radical environmentalists refuse to consider anything but solar or wind, because they don’t like nuclear or damming rivers. So we stick to the old standbys, talk a lot about conservation, but really do very little.

  4. 5.  If the government had the balls to stand up to the automakers (American and Foreign), and demand that they increase CAFE for ALL of their vehicles by 5 mpg over the nest few years, we could reduce our reliance on the oil producing countries to such an extent, that they would have to treat us as valued customers, rather than slaves.

    But GWBs energy plan is to give tax breaks to corporations that are currently making about 5 billion per quarter. And if you think that drilling in ANWAR, or anywhere else in the US, will make fuel either cheaper or reduce our fealty to the Saudis etc., guess again. At the rate we use oil, the untapped oil reserves in the US would supply us for 6 months, and be assured that the people that get the oil out of the ground will sell it at the same price that we’re currently paying.

  5. 6.  Put me in the minority: I do not want fuel standards raised. Leaving aside the fact that the Fed shouldn’t monkey around with the free market, this is a safety issue. To keep up with these standards, car companies will need to make lighter vehicles that don’t protect their occupants as well during collisions. That’s bad public policy.

  6. 7.  Todd, your logic would have us all driving Hummers, if its about saftey first. If the US govt. would have been stricter with fuel standards over the past 20 years (yeah that includes Clinton, but he had little power with a Republican congress) we wouldn’t have had the explosion of large SUV’s. Mr. J brings up a great point about the tax breaks given to large SUV’s, just another horrible pork cut added to some bill.

    My point on ANWAR was not that opening it was going to do much in the long-term, but it was an opportunity for moderate Dems to reach out and give something up in return for higher fuel standards, something that would make a huge difference.

  7. 8.  Scott, where do I say it’s about safety first? What I am saying is that the CAFE regulations make cars less safe than they could be. You think the gas saved is worth the sacrifice in safety; I disagree. Just wanted to let you know that one of the vast minority is roaming around the blog.

    Now I think what Mr. J is referring to (and if I get this wrong I apologize) is the exemption in CAFE for vehicles over a certain weight. Presumably, this was to exempt heavy duty trucks that need to haul things for construction or farming. But what it has allowed automobile manufacturers to do is to make SUVs heavy enough to qualify for the exemption…thus providing an incentive to decrease fuel economy. Yet another example of a Federal program that sets out to do one thing but accomplishes the opposite.

  8. 9.  CAFE makes cars less safe than they could be … I thought the automakers built cars? If all small cars are unsafe, why does the Honda Civic get the insurance industries highest ratings for safety? And if big vehicles are safer, why is Ford paying multimillion dollar settlements to people who have been injured in Explorers. The arguement that CAFE makes cars less safe is the one that the big three has made for years. They want to continue to build and sell high profit margin SUVs, and refuse to put any engineering and design effort into either efficiency or safety. They also know that the Japanese will slaughter them in the efficiency race. I believe that America has the engineering know-how to beat the Japanese at this game if they wanted to, but it is easier to lobby congress and use safety as a red herring to avoid the fight.

    What congress should do is increase the minimum weight of the vehicles that are exempt from CAFE standards, and figure another way to differentiate the vehicle thats used by a landscaper to haul mulch and the vehicle thats used to ferry executives to the golf course. They won’t though.

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