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TODAY'S QUESTION: What do you know or remember most about Ronald Reagan?

Thursday, February 3, 2011 | 12:44 p.m. CST

COLUMBIA — The celebration for the anniversary of Ronald Reagan's 100th birthday is Sunday. Several events are planned to commemorate him, according to the New York Times. A rose parade, a concert by the Beach Boys, a 6-foot-tall cake and a video homage are scheduled to be played during the Super Bowl, which is also on Sunday.

Reagan was the 40th president of the United States and served two terms from 1981 to 1989. He was 93 when he died on June 5, 2004.

What do you know or remember most about Ronald Reagan?


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Comments

Paul Allaire February 3, 2011 | 10:26 p.m.

I don't recall.

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frank christian February 4, 2011 | 9:58 a.m.

What I know and remember about Reagan is far different from what is apparently being taught today.

Reagan was never responsible for the deficit spending of Tip O'Neal and the Democrat Congress. He stopped monitorizing (print press)of the debt of Carter-Congress and obtained the money the only honest way, Borrowed it. Carter gave us 4 years of 12-15% inflation which we were being told by our Gov't was happening because we were consuming too much. Folks like cartoonist G. Trudeau fomented this lie with his Pogo, "we have found the enemy and it is us!"

When Reagan formed a bi-partisan committee to look into repairs for Social Security, a nation wide campaign to scare seniors to death (this newspaper very much included)was created. "Ronald Reagan only wants to destroy your SS!"

He cured J. Carter's "energy crisis" with the stroke of his pen. Revoked one of Carters Reg's. Famed Democrat T. Eagleton proclaimed gas prices would go thru the roof! They went down immediately.

These are some of the things I know about Ronald Reagan. All would best read it here. You'll have to look hard for it elsewhere in today's liberal reading.

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John Schultz February 4, 2011 | 10:07 a.m.

Frank, since you didn't get the creator of Pogo correct (my recollection is that it's Walt somebodyoranother, while Gary Trudeau penned Doonesbury), how much of the rest of your memory can we trust?

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frank christian February 4, 2011 | 2:59 p.m.

John - I did not know Walt Kelly created Pogo or the sentence. Was sure, however,Garry Trudeau used it and was praised for his help in that regard. If I made it up I'm really good at revisionism, aren't I. I have a mental picture of S. Carolina Senator Ernest, Fritz Hollings telling us in a speech that we had inflation, because all us Americans are consooomin too much. Rush L. spent a lot of time on it and had a great imitation of the too long serving Democrat. Can't find anything about either instance on the google, so 1000 pardons, please! (I did say it would be hard to find.) Any thing else, you let me know!

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Gregg Bush February 7, 2011 | 3:40 p.m.

I remember Reagan lying about not supporting the drug running Nicaraguan Contras to finance a terrorist operation (in violation of the Boland Amendments) and selling TOW missiles to Iran in exchange for hostages while arming Saddam Hussein.
That and invading Grenada.
Can I remember 2 things?

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frank christian February 7, 2011 | 6:30 p.m.

gregg - Reagan always openly supported the Contras, believe he was first to call them "freedom fighters". The Boland Amendments caused the whole Iran-Contra episode. The Democrat controlled Congress allowed the Rep. to attach amendmnt to any spending bill passed to prohibit one dollar from being used to remove Communists from Central America. A black period for our leftist, Democrat Congress.

I guess you got 1 right. Hate to think if you had elaborated further on it.

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frank christian February 7, 2011 | 6:38 p.m.

I note now you were wrong on another point,the missiles were sold for cash to Iran to raise the money Congress would not allow. Soviet Union was still in business, encamped in Cuba, and were making strides in Central America. All this OK with our commie Congress.

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David Karr February 7, 2011 | 7:07 p.m.

No Frank; you are wrong. I do not believe you actually know very much about Latin American or Nicaraguan history.
Reagan branded the Nicaraguan revolution falsely as out-and-out communist; but before U.S. aid was cut, the revolution's major trading partner was Mexico--not Cuba, and certainly not the USSR. The revolutionary leaders came from a mix of Christian, democratic, socialist, and yes, communist, backgrounds, but were not tools of the USSR. But when the U.S. economically moved against them, and pressured Mexico to cut off aid, they turned to Cuba, as a last remaining place to go (they were among the poorest states in Latin America). Reagan mined their harbors, and portrayed Nicaragua as a genuine military threat to the U.S.
I (and I suspect many others who actually read books by experts on this region--rather than crap put out by thinktanks or worse) will never forgive Reagan for his attack on a democratic-socialist revolution mounted against a corrupt plutocratic--but US-friendly--regime. I see Reagan's clandestine war against Nicaragua as one of the most shameful episodes of post-WW2 US history.
"Commie Congress" indeed--that's supremely ignorant language. Go back further in history, to the 1960s, 1950s, and 1940s, and you'll learn something important about our relationship with Nicaragua. Come back when you've done some research beyond wikipedia. Warning: you will have to read books.

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Derrick Fogle February 7, 2011 | 7:27 p.m.

I remember when "Ronald Ray-Gun - the Fascist Gun In the West" became the fascist gun in the entire nation. I remember his "Star Wars" defense initiative, pissing away a then-unheard of $Trillion on military buildup. I remember the staggering (at the time) national debt he ran up during his tenure. I remember his ludicrous "Trickle-Down" economics sham, which began the massive transfer of wealth from the average citizen to the elite oligarch which continues to this day. I remember he presided over our nation going from the biggest creditor nation on the planet to the biggest debtor nation on the planet. I remember the Air Traffic Controllers. I remember his obvious age-related dementia during his 2nd term. I remember him repeating "I don't recall, Senator." over and over and over during the Iran-Contra hearings. I remember his "Welfare Queen" rhetoric. I remember his "War on Drugs" which has put 10 million people behind bars, and saw crime steadily increase for the first 10 years, but has done absolutely nothing but create a massive and dangerous black market for drugs.

I remember a lot of things about Ronald Reagan. Few of them are good. When Reagan stepped in, the prosperity of the middle class was stepped on. He was an actor, playing the part. He was the father of tax cuts for the rich, and belt-tightening for everyone else. He was the father of modern-day debt spending by the federal government. And, he is the father of modern day "conservatism".

(Report Comment)
Ricky Gurley February 7, 2011 | 7:43 p.m.

What do you know or remember most about Ronald Reagan?
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I can't recall..........

Ricky Gurley.

(Report Comment)
Ricky Gurley February 7, 2011 | 7:44 p.m.

Dang! I did not read the comments. Paul beat me to it.. LOL.

Ricky Gurley.

(Report Comment)
hank ottinger February 7, 2011 | 8:36 p.m.

The less-than-artful slide into the passive voice: "Mistakes were made."

One more: the euphemism for multiple warhead missiles: "Peacekeepers."

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frank christian February 7, 2011 | 9:23 p.m.

D Karr - American history is the subject here. You must know that USSR was tight with Castro and financing Cuban guerrillas into Africa and all over Central America. J. Kennedy knew it, J. Carter and his commie Congress tried to further it and R. Reagan knew it. Boland Amendments prevented any money from us while Russia and Cuba were bankrolling everyone on their side. The only thing clandestine about is what Oliver North had to do to raise money and that is only shameful thing about it as well. I don't know what you read but in my opinion you are the ignorant one in this issue. I'm sure, like that Congress, you intentionally ignore the threat from USSR and Cuba. Why, I Do not know. My info came from the news at the time. Here are a couple of notes telling about the situation. I'm sure they won't suit you.

The Sandinista National Liberation Front (Spanish: Frente Sandinista de Liberación Nacional, or FSLN) is a socialist political party in Nicaragua.

The Communist Party of El Salvador (in Spanish: Partido Comunista de El Salvador) was the official Communist political party in El Salvador. The Communist Party was founded by Miguel Mármol in the 1930s. In the mid 1960s the U.S. State Department estimated the party membership to be approximately 200

Communism in Latin America - Guerrilla Insurgents

However, in the 1960s, at the height of its regional influence and revolutionary appeal, Cuba joined with the Soviet Union in funding and training Marxist guerrilla groups throughout Latin America. Following Cuba's lead, these movements chose armed conflict over electoral competition as a means to their deliverance from exploitation. What followed in many countries were two decades of civil…

(Report Comment)
David Karr February 8, 2011 | 6:16 a.m.

Sorry Frank, but cutting and pasting from internet sites (as you have just done) just doesn't cut it in a discussion of world and world-regional politics. You haven't responded in any meaningful way to my corrections of your misreporting the nature of the Sandinista revolution, nor of Reagan's extralegal method of repressing that revolutionary government. Hit the books, and lay off the internet.

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frank christian February 8, 2011 | 8:34 a.m.

D Karr - I showed you some information and admitted you would not accept it. You can't/won't accept "any meaningful way" except your own.

The Communist, USSR goal was world domination. They were in Cuba and J Kennedy prevented them from installing missile sites there. I showed Castro and USSR efforts to expand their ideology to other continents by force, not elections, and you say study the Sandinista revolution. Nicaragua not a genuine military threat? With Soviet missiles installed there, pointed at us? I pointed out exactly why Lt Col North and others had to take things into their own hands because of the Democrat Congress and their Boland amendments. Any books you are reading that do not address these facts are of no interest to me.

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frank christian February 8, 2011 | 9:39 a.m.

D Fogle - I planned to ignore you in this but the above post is so fraught with errors, it seems impossible.

Reagans military buildup was necessary because J. Carter, as does every every Democrat, afforded the chance, had decimated our defenses. "Missile defense "had less impact on the industry than many might think," Augustine said. "Although it was a highly publicized and certainly controversial program, in the grand scheme of defense spending it wasn't that large, and much of it was spent on research and development, a relatively smaller part of the defense budget."

The people it really affected were the Soviets, he said. "They were much more convinced we could make it work than many of us were, frankly, and certainly more than much of our media."

Reagans "trickle down economics" created 19M jobs (reduced to 16M in today's history) needed after Carter, as is needed today with Obama.

The aircraft controllers union had broken the law that allowed them to organize. They struck, over a $10,000 per year, per employee salary increase, while the industry was so overstaffed, supervisors were working as regular controllers. It was quite a shock for a President to require they obey the law.

"I don't recall, Senator.", has more to do with Hillary C. being questioned about Rose Law Firm billing records than Reagan.

Nancy Reagan created the "Just Say No" drug program, (I explained it in a letter to the other publication)which created great reductions in youth drug use. The War on Drugs was installed by Reagans successor, moderate R' Globalist, HW Bush. Clinton erased the Just Say No program and concentrated on treatment of adult addicts. Did this decrease crime rate?

You have to know, with your great wealth of knowledge that,"modern-day debt spending by the federal government." was then, as now, controlled by Congress. Give us a break!

(Report Comment)
David Karr February 8, 2011 | 7:02 p.m.

Good grief, Frank--the notion that the USSR was somehow in a position to install missiles in Nicaragua in the early-to-mid 1980s is simply laughable. Do you know anything about the state of the USSR in 1981, 1982??

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Derrick Fogle February 8, 2011 | 7:33 p.m.

I knew you couldn't resist Frank. Spin the Ray-Gun however you want. He is still the father of modern big deficit government spending, no matter how urgent or necessary you think his deficit spending was. He also raised taxes 11 times. Today's economy is stalled largely because of Reagan's economic policies that have seriously eroded the ability of our nation to provide demand for products.

Oh, wait, because Democrats have existed somewhere, anything and everything bad can always be blamed on them. Gotcha.

I do think it's kinda funny how we goaded the USSR into spending themselves into oblivion, and Osama Bin Laden is successfully playing the same trick on US.

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frank christian February 9, 2011 | 8:02 a.m.

D. Karr - http://cuban-exile.com/doc_201-225/doc02...

This a 1981 report from state dept, showing what Cuba was doing in CA and that USSR was spending 8M$ per Day bankrolling them. This comes from the net,so not in your zone 0f belief. Just suffice it to say you are wrong, wrong, wrong. It appears you and Fogle are more content to twist Truth, when it suits your purpose, which seems to be promotion of the progressive in these discussions.

You have added a fresh factor tho,most around here, that I've written with,won't believe it Unless it comes from the net.

(Report Comment)
Gregg Bush February 9, 2011 | 8:30 a.m.

Frank - The Soviet missiles were not "aimed at us." They were surface to air missiles. Your link shows that.

Do you think about the things you type before you type them - or do you just smash at keys?

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frank christian February 9, 2011 | 10:02 a.m.

gbush - I think I'm having a hard time figuring out what you are writing about. "Nicaragua not a genuine military threat? With Soviet missiles installed there, pointed at us? If this is it,My point was that since USSR had tried to install pads and missiles in Cuba and they would no doubt be welcomed by Sandinista gov't and missiles pointed at us would be quite likely. Was there another mention of missiles besides "tows" in your mistake laden post of the 7th?

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John Schultz February 9, 2011 | 10:35 a.m.

Frank, are you saying that the Soviet Union had nukes in Nicaragua?

(Report Comment)
frank christian February 9, 2011 | 3:34 p.m.

NO! John.

(Report Comment)
David Karr February 9, 2011 | 7:04 p.m.

Frank--then what *are* you saying??? The FLN leadership were simply not the unified bloc of commies you seem to want to depict them as. Do you understand that the minute the FLN accepted Soviet missiles--which you can bet were *never* an option in the early 1980s (do some reading on the nature of the post-Brezhnev gerontocracy)--they would be a pariah state among their L. Am. and S. Am. neighbors?

Nicaragua was a small, desperately poor state, which saw a popular revolution against a US-supported plutocracy (admittedly, one which we had pressed to undertake reforms after 1973). The revolution succeeded, and whereas Carter started trying to find a way to balance US business and geopolitical interests in the region, with the fundamental reorentiation that the FLN sought to being to the state, Reagan decided to move against them full-force. Once Reagan did that, he also pressured Mexico--which had contributed the largest economic aid by FAR to the new government--to cut that aid. The new, young fragile state of Nicaragua lost US aid, Mexican aid, and thus Cuba became primary by default. But at the beginning, Ortega wanted to deal with the US. Our gov't crushed a popular uprising for domestic political reasons: Reagan's desire to appease the hawks in his constituency. I wish there were space here to tell you about the FLN's medical and educational initiatives, and its land reform program.

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frank christian February 9, 2011 | 9:31 p.m.

D.Karr - Read yours, "you can bet", "they would be". Reagan was intent upon destroying the greatest threat to the U.S. since Germany and Japan. One of your books must have told that Communist failures after USSR showed them that "small, desperately poor states" were the only places they could succeed. I really am tired of reading your efforts to make communism sound reasonable. But of course you are only trying to prove it has not been a threat. Sorry, it was and is.

(Report Comment)
Gregg Bush February 10, 2011 | 9:59 a.m.

Trying to have it both ways, I see.
"..."small, desperately poor states" were the only places they could succeed."
And -
"All this OK with our commie Congress."

How dare you call America a small, desperately poor state!
Well, I love my country, and I find it pathetic how much you run it down. At least our First Amendment, is big enough for people like you, Frank. Be sure and thank a veteran for your right to type such vileness.

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Derrick Fogle February 10, 2011 | 12:44 p.m.

Frank's consistent Logic:

Reagan gets all the credit for his one tax cut and 19M jobs created, while the "commie Congress" gets all the blame for the 11 tax increases and the $2.6 Trillion ($4.7 Trillion in today's dollars) deficit.

Clinton gets all the blame for the dot-com downturn, and pretty much everything that's wrong with the economy today, while the Rebup congress gets all the credit for the small budget surpluses and 22.4 Million jobs created during Clinton's tenure.

I guess we don't talk much about the paltry 5.7 Million jobs created, or $3.2 Trillion of debt created, between 2001-2007 when R's had full control of everything, except to blame it all on the previous Clinton administration. But anything that has happened since 2007 when D's gained control of house and senate, and especially since 2009 when Obama was inaugurated, is clearly the D's fault, and none of anything bad was the fault of any previous R Congresses or R administrations.

What did you say about having it both ways?

Wallz in hiz brainz...

(Report Comment)
Mark Foecking February 10, 2011 | 1:07 p.m.

@Derrick

Actually what's most consistent about the "Logic" you've cited is its *inconsistency*. Whichever is the majority party in Congress, and especially who is in the White House, has very little to do with our economic performance. They just take the credit, or blame.

DK

(Report Comment)
Louis Schneebaum February 10, 2011 | 3:03 p.m.

frank christian says:

"He stopped monitorizing (print press)of the debt"... LOL.

(Report Comment)
frank christian February 10, 2011 | 3:13 p.m.

@ g bush - Is it dyslexia that makes people read things wrong? Nicaragua had been described as a small, desperately poor" state. I have read two books by avowed communists, bemoaning the fact that their movement since USSR had suffered failures trying gain footholds in countries in which the people were healthy,wealthy,thus, happy. (Rahm Emanuel knows this, "never let a good crisis go to waste!) US of A of course is in the latter category and never mentioned in the former. Are you seeing anybody?

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frank christian February 10, 2011 | 3:35 p.m.

Mark Foecking - Derrick has problems enough getting his opinion and his facts in proper order. Don't throw anymore curves at him.

"Whichever is the majority party in Congress, and especially who is in the White House, has very little to do with our economic performance." Actually, they have much to do with it. You somehow always omit "gov't" in your assessment of our economy. Our debt is a great problem, caused by no one except Gov't. You bemoan our need for foreign oil but never mention the 20 year moratorium on drilling by Congress. Former CEO of Shell Oil recently publicly stated ,we could be providing 10M barrels a day, of our own oil, if not for Federal regulations. Just curious, why are these problems never included in any discussion, that I have read by you?

(Report Comment)
Derrick Fogle February 10, 2011 | 5:41 p.m.

If Mark was throwing me a curve, why are you pinch hitting for me?

"Our debt is a great problem, caused by no one except Gov't."

Really? What about all those people who bought more house than they could afford? Are they not to blame, too?

I do think you're at least partly right... but it dovetails very nicely with my point: That Ronald Reagan was the first president since WWII to drive the government into significant debt. Reagan is the father of modern government deficit spending.

(Report Comment)
Gregg Bush February 10, 2011 | 5:55 p.m.

"I think I'm having a hard time figuring out what you are writing about." This is not surprising.

But I know stalker-talk when I read it: "Are you seeing anybody?"
Creepy.

(Report Comment)
frank christian February 10, 2011 | 7:50 p.m.

Derrick, Greg - It is clear,you both need to see someone, tho, not, of course, each other. When, if,something sensible can be discerned from a post, come back.

(Report Comment)
Mark Foecking February 11, 2011 | 3:36 a.m.

frank christian wrote:

"Our debt is a great problem, caused by no one except Gov't."

Yes it is, and I never said it wasn't. But one party isn't responsible - both are. Why do the difficult and unpopular work of raising taxes and cutting spending when it's so much easier just to "charge it"?

Our economic ups and downs have much more to do with easy credit and energy prices than government policy and taxing/spending. There's no correlation, for example, between top tax rates and GDP growth, but there's a much stronger correlation between oil prices and GDP growth.

"Former CEO of Shell Oil recently publicly stated ,we could be providing 10M barrels a day, of our own oil, if not for Federal regulations."

I estimated on the other board that, with a balls-to-the-wall drilling program, we could achieve an output of between 10 and 12 million barrels/day by 2025 and sustain that for about a decade. However, all this would do is moderate prices in the medium term (plus, we'd still have to import 1/3 of our oil), and delay the necessary transition away from our dependence on oil. We'll drill for all this oil eventually - people will demand it - but I don't want to see it squandered as we do now.

It would be like a person in an isolated cabin with two cords of wood, that will keep his house at 60 degrees for the winter if he rations carefully. He could keep it at 65 or 70 if he wanted, but will run out of wood by February and spend a lot of chilly nights before spring comes.

If we are not willing to do something about demand, I'd rather see us import oil as long as exporters will take our currency, and save our own oil for later. Only in a context of conservation and efficiency would I like to see a greatly expanded domestic drilling program.

DK

(Report Comment)
frank christian February 11, 2011 | 9:02 a.m.

Mark - "But one party isn't responsible - both are." One party has controlled Congress, which controls our money and debt for more than 50 years. The other took control for 12 yrs, balanced their budget 4 yrs in a row and reduced our debt by 490B$, then accepted a President who's desire to reach out to the spenders cost them Congress. They have regained the House,proclaim their desire to balance their budget (not even established by previous majority), reduce spending and debt. The other party has never, to my knowledge, ever even considered reduced spending or a balanced budget. This history is true. You can decide which party is which and note that the word both never appears.

The Shell CEO said we could be producing 10M barrels per day right now, today! Except for Federal regulations. The only "new" energy source any where near our horizon is nuclear. Gov't has stopped development there. Gov. M. Coumo shut down an 11B$ operating reactor in NY because of "safety" concerns by environmental groups.

Many would be happy to see our oil imports reduced to 1/3 of needs. Thankfully you do not decide what part of our supplies are "squandered". Your vision puts us in the cold now, because it may be worse later. You never consider Gov't role, except as an inevitable obstruction which is to be ignored rather than corrected. Neither, do I ever recall you referring to "free market" as any part of a solution.

(Report Comment)
Mark Foecking February 12, 2011 | 6:26 a.m.

frank christian wrote:

"ever recall you referring to "free market" as any part of a solution."

The free market will not solve our energy predicament. There is no substitute for oil on the scale that we use it, and likely never will be. That is a matter of physics, not policy. The free market has historically been an effective allocator of resources, and it largely has determined the shape of our transportation system. However, this transportation system cannot run on anything but petroleum. This, again is a matter of physics, no matter what people would like to believe.

"Squandered" means that we cannot waste 90 units of energy to provide one energy unit of transportation, and this is precisely what we do when the average driver uses his car. Automobiles account for almost half of our petroleum usage, and will for the forseeable future. This is unsustainable in a world where Asia wants to put another billion cars on the road by 2050. We are getting much more like Europe in terms of our import situation, and should look to some of their solutions, like a severe fuel tax.

This tax could be used to subsidize domestic production (removing the uncertainties of market price swings that keeps oil producers from investing in high-cost production methods), and build usable alternatives to driving. Most of Europe's mass transit systems are self supporting - our could be also.

The automobile is simply the ultimate expression of instant gratification, and an incredibly costly one. It has allowed us to choose unsustainable lifestyles that are at constant risk of disruption because of political, and eventually geological, happenings. It is prudent for government to address this, if nothing else as a matter of national security. This isn't conservative or liberal, it's just facing reality square in the eye, instead of ignoring it like spoiled children.

DK

(Report Comment)
frank christian February 12, 2011 | 11:53 a.m.

Mark F. - I was beating a dead horse with the initial post and know I am doing it again with this one.

You are never going to admit that our Gov't is responsible for most of our problems with energy,much less ever address the solutions it could provide if necessary changes in those running it were to occur. Allow exploration for additional oil,more refineries to produce gas, the use of natural gas for transportation etc.http://www.anga.us/learn-the-facts/power-generation/availability. The people in charge until recently have stifled every tangible source of energy while subsidizing wind and solar and electric cars, for their environmental donors, to the detriment of the rest of us.

The moms transporting 8 kids to and from school, in their SUVs are "spoiled children"and should find other means so "we" might save our own oil for future use. "We" most certainly does not included Gore and Pelosi in their jets. What is being done to curtail, "Asia wants to put another billion cars on the road by 2050."?

"a severe fuel tax." would probably be used in 100 ways other than that which you suggested, "to subsidize domestic production (removing the uncertainties of market price swings" might be the last, in my opinion.

Your posted solutions would reduce our economy and lifestyle to oppressively low levels, while "saving" our domestic oil for use by the elitists among us, for whatever purpose they wish. You probably won't accept that truth either.

(Report Comment)

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