Monday, July 14, 2008

Monday Thoughts

Well, twice in a week, or successive weeks. Ok, not bad for the summer, and it's finally been summer here, with temperatures in the 70's normally and 80's occasionally. Not bad, especially with blue skies. Unfortunately that also leads to still winds haze and blocked vista. But the mountains are still clear. Taking the ferry across the Puget Sound Sunday morning I could see Mt. Baker, Glacier Peak and the obvious Mt. Rainier, and the Olympics were beautiful.

Ok the news.

This just in. Five of the group of eight terrorists accused by the British government of attempting to blow up airlines headed to the US using bombs disguised as soft drinks were convict of attempting to cause explosions, not terrorism or actually blowing anything up. They simply wanted to do it and tried to make the bombs.

Ok, the connection?

They did this in August 2006 and this is the reason US airlines banned passengers from carrying liquids onto planes. Yes, the rule wasn't about terrorist actually doing anything, but simply thinking, planning and then trying to build a bomb. They never succeeded to actually build a bomb, let alone actually succeed.

The whole rule about liquids is a fraud, based on false claims by the British government. It didn't originate in the US nor involve any US citizen. And no US law enforcement agency has found any liquid-based bombs on planes or being smuggled onto plane by passengers. So how do you feel about that rule now?

Kinda' stupid rule, huh?

I don't understand this. The mortage company IndyMac is a public traded company which operates for a profit. Granted they have a large share of the mortage market, but to forestall their failure, the government takes over the company, not to save the people paying the mortages but the shareholders and company management from losing their money.

This is a real WTF moment for me. Congress and the government won't bail out home buyers but they'll bail our investment companies and mortage companies. While home buyers are getting fucked by their bank and mortage company, the company is getting the government to offset their losses and giving them loans to forestall bankruptcy.

And now they're going to save FannieMae and FreddieMac too, despite all the rhetoric about how solvent they are by those very same Congressional Representatives and Senators. The reality is that these two companies which own $5 Trillion in mortages is on the verge of being insolvent and facing big loses, in billions of dollars, from the burst home price market.

And on top of that the mortages are packaged into securities bought by investors, many of which are foreign investors. So all this isn't about home buyers but investors, shareholders and corporate executives. Hmmm.... Do you think we know where the loyalty lies now? Our government and Congress isn't out to save you or I but their corporate friends while protecting the international investors in US companies.

George Bush and the White House has learned a new tool in their political arsenal. Punt.

Since the Iraqis want a timetable for withdrawal, they've decided to punt the issue to the next President.

Since the courts ordered the EPA to do its job on climate change and global warning, they've punted the work to the next EPA Administrator.

Since they won't go after the oil speculation market which adds $0.50-.80 to every gallon of gas, something even the Democrats won't touch, they've decided it's not an issue, so punt it past the endzone into oblivion.

Since they can't get the oil companies to explore the land currently under the lease in the Western US, they punted the pressure to the next President.

Since they can't get the oil refineries to build new facilities - last one built over 20 years ago - to add new quantities to the market, they've punted it to the next President.

They've learned the art of punting political responsibility to the American people and just bide their time until next January.

Off-shore oil exploration. All the reports say that any off-shore drilling would get into the pipeline for 3-5 years minimum and likely 5-8 years and it won't change the price of gasoline at the pump. Exploring ANWR won't help for 7-10 years minimum and won't change the price of gasoline.

The oil companies currently hold leases for 68 million square acres of land in the West, why aren't they exploring there when they have more information, existing development, and faster extraction to refineries and to market? That alone would help reduce the cost of gasoline if just a little.

This isn't about drilling for oil but simply companies getting leases, ownership right to explore and extract oil on public lands and waters, but not now or the immediate future. Our lands and our off-shore waters. Even if they had those new leases they wouldn't explore for oil anymore than they need to keep the lease. It about control of oil for the future.

They oil companies have been doing this for decades, how else did they get their current unused leases, and around the world. And what's even worse, Congress is on track to agree with the President to do this. We're being fucked by our own elected officials!

Feel good now? Sorry, it's not fair, especially on a Monday, but it is what they're doing.

Well, that's it. Be careful who you follow, you might be following a quack. Ok, bad joke, but it's Monday and the brain isn't all there. Have a good week.

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