Wednesday, May 23, 2007

An Exercise in Futility

So, the House of Representatives has passed an “Anti-Opec” bill, the Washington Post reported yesterday.

Evidently the bills main sponsor, Representative John Conyers, Jr. (D-MI), has been lacking adequate press coverage, and justification for his presence in Washington D.C., and the hot topic of the times is of course gas prices, which has nothing to do with simply supply and demand in the marketplace, at least according to John Conyers.

“We don’t have to stand by and watch OPEC dictate the price of gas,” Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers, D-Mich., the bill’s chief sponsor, declared, reflecting the frustration lawmakers have felt over their inability to address people’s worries about high summer fuel costs.

The bill supposedly allows the U.S. government to sue OPEC over how much oil they do, or don’t, pump out of the ground.  A similar bill is in the Senate for the same exercise in futility.

Let’s consider how this lawsuit will work a moment.  The U.S. government will spend millions of dollars on attorney fees, so the OPEC countries will have to do the same, all the while the OPEC countries will continue to pump as much, or as little, oil out of the ground as they well please, which is how it should be, and Congress and John Conyers will get alot of press coverage over the lawsuit, which will be fed to us poor “citizens” who are at the mercy of OPEC’s caprice in regards to oil.

Meanwhile, back in the real world, as OPEC cuts oil production because of the U.S. government’s interference in their private business, gasoline prices will rise, due to supply not keeping up with demand.  But it’ll make good press.

Yeah, that’ll learn those darn OPEC countries.

Posted by John Venlet on 05/23 at 10:25 AM
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Seat Belt Law Foolishness

I always wear my seat belt, but I do not wear this active restraint because the state decrees I must, I wear it because it makes sense.  If you don’t want to wear your seat belt, don’t.

New Hampshire, the “Live Free or Die State,” currently the only state without an adult seat belt law, may soon be putting one on the books.

The primary sponsor of the seat belt law, is Democrat Jennifer Brown.  And what is her reasoning for sponsorship of such a law?

The bill’s primary sponsor, state Representative Jennifer M. Brown, said her goal is not to erode the state’s famous motto, but to prevent serious injuries that drain the public coffers in a state that is trying to make ends meet without a sales or income tax.

Brown additionally has this to say.

“By that person being stupid and not wearing their seat belt, they are costing me and my constituents money,” Brown said. “And if there is one thing this state believes in even more than ‘Live Free or Die,’ it is no broad-based taxes.”

Ms. Brown’s arguments sound rather convincing, especially if the state has to foot the bill for those inclined to foolishly not wearing their seat belts without the state’s coercive power as their incentive.

Though Ms. Brown’s arguments seem convincing, what is the real reason for New Hampshire’s consideration of such a law?  I think it is the following.

If it does pass in its current form, the state could receive $3.7 million from the federal government for promoting public awareness of the need to use seat belts.

Yep, it’s the dollars, both from the federal government, and from what New Hampshire can glean from enforcement of the law, if it passes.

I don’t think New Hampshire will have room on their license plates for a revision of their state motto, though.  “Live Free or Die, But You Better Have Your Seat Belt On.”

New Hampshire could join rest of nation with seat belt law

Posted by John Venlet on 05/23 at 07:43 AM
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Wednesday Morning Laugh

The New York Times has an article up this morning with the headline Democrats Find Ethics Overhaul Elusive in House.

The piece explains that the Dems were unable to keep one of their campaign “promises” regarding lobbying, and are in a tight spot in trying to keep another of their campaign “promises.”  Is anyone actually surprised by this?

But the real laugh, in this piece of reporting, is uttered by Representative Michael E. Capuano, a Massachusetts Democrat.

“I made a career change 20 years ago to be a full-time elected official,” Mr. Capuano said, explaining his position. “I am no longer qualified to be a tax attorney. It is like saying to people, ‘Please, come into public service, give it your all, and when you are done you are completely unqualified for anything else.’ ”

The laments of a professional jobholder, who is undoubtedly “unqualified for anything else.”

Posted by John Venlet on 05/23 at 07:10 AM
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