August 13, 2004

Kipling

Once before I wrote about Kipling's classic poem, and asked readers to consider it when selecting a candidate this year for any office.

Here is my own version of what I would love the RNC to produce for the convention. It is a large PowerPoint file (6MB) so don't bother if you have dial-up...you'll be waiting a long time!

***UPDATE*** I've added Shockwave and Windows Media Player versions which will be more amenable to most visitors.

Posted by Bunker at 10:03 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

August 07, 2004

Relative Numbers

Those of you interested in actuals relative to forcast numbers might want to take a look at the Congressional Budget Office's Monthly Budget Review.

The budget deficit, larger than I want to see, is looking smaller and smaller. I don't know that a balanced budget is better than a deficit. I've heard arguments both ways and really can draw no conclusion. I do want to see them separate Social Security from the general revenues. There was never a true balanced budget since these were merged back in the 1960s as a way to hide deficits.

I want to see spending reduced. And I don't want increased spending to be called "reduced" simply because it is less than someone desires. Neither party has any interest in doing so because that's how incumbents keep their jobs.

Posted by Bunker at 06:03 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

August 04, 2004

Justice

Do we operate under a system of equal justice under law, or is there one system for the average citizen and another for the high and mighty? --Teddy Kennedy

I think he should ask Sandy Berger.

Posted by Bunker at 12:30 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Firing Time

According to an NPR report this morning, members of the 9/11 Commission, and the Victims Families Steering Committee are scattering around the country to campaign for the Commission's recommendations. This is a "bi-partisan" effort. Personally, I would prefer an non-partisan effort.

The main thing they want is for Congress and the President to implement all their recommendations. In other words, the Commissioners want control. No debate. Just accept what we said and do it. Now. If there was any doubt about the political nature of the commission, this should end that doubt.

Congress, for their part, want the proposed Intelligence Chief to have budgetary power. In the words of several senators and congressmen in the 88 committees and sub-committees that oversee Homeland Security, he or she would have no authority without it. I can't believe it even after writing it down! And they all want better congressional oversight. Funny, I don't see anything in Article I, Section 8, of the Constitution which gives them "oversight" authority over the Executive Branch. They control the budget, but prefer to have the President submit one each year.

Please save the politics for the campaign trail and simply do the job we hired you to do. Remember, you are our employees, not the other way around.

Posted by Bunker at 05:45 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

August 03, 2004

Sales Tax

The really wealthy in this country pay no income tax. The Democrats like to point that out, even though many of them fall into this category. What they don't tell you is--why. The really wealthy have little or no income. They live off savings and trust funds and perqs (like our senators and congressmen) and have no need for income.

But they do spend. And they spend big. Let's use the favorite adjective of "antis" everywhere to describe them: BIG SPENDERS. Kinda goes along with Big Oil, Big Tobacco, and Big Personal Injury Lawyers.

Just an example that's been floating around recently--John Kerry's $8000 bike. And let me clear, this isn't a slam at Kerry, but of everyone like him. Is a 10% sales tax to replace the income tax a good idea? His bike would then cost him $8800. I think he could afford it. "But sales tax hurts those who don't have much money." Only if they buy things. Right now, they pay no income taxes at all. If we restrict a sales tax to limit its application so that things like food and medicine aren't taxed, there is no suffering involved. It puts you in charge of how much you pay in federal taxes.

Our Curmudgeon has an interesting piece on Hastert's proposal and its repercussions. Democrats won't like it even though it taxes the rich in proportion to their spending habits, or maybe because it does so. They also won't like it because the people they count on to remain in office will end up having to contribute something to "provide for the common defense and promote the general welfare."

This country operated for more than a century without an income tax. When created, it was supposed to be a temporary measure. Nothing in the Federal Government is temporary.

***UPDATE***
Neal Boortz has more.

Posted by Bunker at 07:09 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

July 28, 2004

Supporting the President

Dean has posted An Interesting Question For Conservatives:

Now here is my interesting question: I've made myself some friends among conservatives by speaking this way. But I do find myself wondering: how many of you on the right will embrace such a philosophy if John Kerry should carry the election in November?

I will.

I believe in the separation of government and politics. I hate politics. Government interests me. The two are not the same, nor should they be. We elect people to represent us, and we expect them to do what is right within the framework of our Constitution.

Today, the election cycle never ends. Politics continue day in and day out. Political shenanigans are the domestic equivalent of diplomacy, and belong in a small, controlled timeframe prior to an election. No deal-making. No vote buying. Simple representation is what we deserve.

The real question is whether we want a President or a Political Commisar. A President will act in the best interests of the United States, whether it is popular or not. I believe that is what Dubya has done. That's why I support him. People seem to forget what a tremendous political risk he was taking by first going into Afghanistan, and then finishing up what the UN refused to do in Iraq a decade ago. Those political chickens seem to be coming home to roost, but not because of any failures. We have had many successes, with bumps in the road. The bumps are heralded as failures.

I don't like Kerry because I believe Ted Kennedy will finally get the White House if he wins, something Ted couldn't accomplish on his own. We will have the equivalent of Tip O'Neill controlling Jimmy Carter. Kerry would be a political commisar like Clinton. At least Carter had a sincere heart.

My biggest complaint about those who speak ill of our President and besmirch the accomplishments of our troops is that they do it with no sense of how destructive it is to any foreign policy we want to pursue. Divide and Conquer is a valid strategy, and even easier to accomplish when the enemy divides himself, which our enemies clearly understand. Diplomacy only works if you operate from strength. That is what the "Give Peace a Chance" group refuses to understand.

My loyalties lie first with the United States. For all our failings, this is still the best place in the world to live. There is absolutely no comparison. And we are quick to point out our own failings. For the whole world to see. I have been to and lived in (not just a visit) a wide variety of countries with different histories, languages, and cultures. None come close. Not even England, which is as close to us in those things as any other. Not Canada, as much as they would like to be like us.

In the first half of the 19th century, all the nations in Europe sat back waiting for this experiment to fail so they could then come in and pick up the pieces that suited them. No representative government like ours had ever survived. In 1861 we surprised them all. We fought a war, one of the bloodiest in history, between ourselves. Europeans thought the end was near. What surprised them was not that we had a Civil War, but that the entire nation was mobilized--fiercely. We had larger armies fighting one another than they could ever dream of building. We had muscle and commitment like no society had ever known. We were united in our division, as strange as it sounds. At that point, the US became a force to be reckoned with. Still something we need to project overseas if we ever want to succeed diplomatically.

That unity of purpose is what we saw in the one or two days after 9/11, which dissolved quickly once people saw Dubya was looking too good to suit them. We cannot survive in this world operating that way. As long as Kerry, if elected, acts like a President I will support him as one. Too bad Dubya wasn't given that opportunity.

Posted by Bunker at 01:12 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack (1)

July 22, 2004

Federal Inertia

The 9/11 Commission officially released its report today. One of the recommendations is that a new cabinet-level position be established for a Director of Intelligence.

That may not be a bad idea. What are they going to eliminate to form this new department?

You know the answer. The Federal Government grows. Always. Well, Clinton often spoke of reducing the size of the monster, and actually did. That is, if you count heads. The number of Federal employess declined at one point during his Presidency. Every department actually increased in size except one: the Department of Defense. Our military was depleted so that other departments could continue to grow while still reducing the total number of people employed.

That is the nature of our Government. It will continue to grow, and grow. No Department is ever eliminated. And every Department always feels it is short-handed. It is time for some lawmaker or President to stand up and say, "That's enough."

To be truly efficient, the Government needs to prioritize. When a new program is proposed, some other program must be eliminated to provide the manpower and budget for the new one. If there is nothing which is less important than the new proposal, then it fails. Period. Unfortunately, everything is the top priority in Washington. What that really means is that nothing is the top priority. Everything is equal. And everything is equal because each program is the most important in the world to someone.

But not the most important to the country. And that is the sad fact. Our "representatives" in Washington don't look at what is best for the United States. You'll hear them say they do, but their actions speak much louder if you're listening. They are interested in what benefits them or their constituents. I can live with that. But I don't want them trading things away to satisfy someone else's constituents. Heresey, I know. But as soon as you are willing to trade your vote for someone else's, you've bloated the bureaucracy and made every program the top priority.

I know that won't change. And I know there isn't a politician in Washington who would propose a bill to make things change by requiring a review of existing Departments or programs before approving a new one to replace one. Inertia in politics is huge. It has a very low velocity, but the mass is tremendous.

And the mass continues to grow.

Posted by Bunker at 11:38 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

July 21, 2004

Berger

Sandy Berger is a liar and a thief, at the very least.

I waited to comment on this issue because I've been mulling it over in my mind. Of course, Democrats are already out in force talking about "timing" and "partisan politics" as if they knew nothing of such things. What I have to say will probably be condemned as such, even though I will simply point out fact. Because fact indicts a member of the Democratic Party and National Security Advisor to the current Democratic candidate for the Presidency, it does not automatically imply partisanship.

I have spent a great deal of time in both the National Archives and the Library of Congress Manuscript Division doing research. I understand procedures in the open areas. The classified areas have even more stringent controls. When you enter you are asked to leave all your folders, cases, and bags at the main entry. The US Government provides pencils and paper for you to take notes. You are not allowed to bring in your own. When you seat yourself at a table, you fill out a form requesting specific boxes of records. If you know what you are looking for, it is relatively easy. Otherwise, you go through a series until you locate what you need. You are welcome to take notes, although this would not be allowed in any classified area I'm familiar with.

When you depart, you pick up your belongings at the front desk area. The attendant checks your papers to be sure you haven't "inadvertantly" included anything which belongs to the Government, and the people of the United States.

You walk into the reading area with nothing, and leave with nothing more than notes written on paper provided. In a classified area, you leave with nothing. Period.

Okay. Tell me where calling Berger a liar and a thief is partisan.

Posted by Bunker at 06:23 AM | Comments (7) | TrackBack (0)

July 19, 2004

The Authority of Silence

Bill says much of what I believe regarding the Federal government, and explains it in a way which makes a lot of sense.

Posted by Bunker at 05:32 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack (0)

July 16, 2004

Music in Flight

Annie Jacobsen writes in WomensWallStreet about a domestic flight she was on recently.

So the question is... Do I think these men were musicians? I'll let you decide. But I wonder, if 19 terrorists can learn to fly airplanes into buildings, couldn't 14 terrorists learn to play instruments?

I like this lady. She has a logical mind. Probably better than some of the agents doing the investigation on this case.

****UPDATE**** I've sworn off watching the news on TV for a while. So I tend to get current events updates on the web. This story is one which should be broadcast. Apparently it wasn't. But, as Sarah noted, it is all over the internet.

The mainstream media have had a stranglehold on news reportage for so long, I don't know that it's possible for them to change. It is kinda like the buggy whip manufacturer who insisted people still needed his product long after horses no longer provided pull power for the majority of Americans.

They had better evolve.

Posted by Bunker at 05:52 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

June 30, 2004

Patriot Act

Because of the confusion regarding the Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism (USA PATRIOT ACT) Act of 2001 (gotta love those Congressional staffers and their acronyms!), I did a little research to see just what the Patriot Act really said. It is 132 pages long in PDF format, and difficult to follow at times as it amends existing laws by replacement or addition of words out of context within this document itself. Relative to other Federal laws, it really isn't that extensive.

I first went to Thomas at the Library of Congress where the official register of legislative activity is maintained for public consumption. At the time I didn't know precisely what section of the Federal Code the law was placed in, so I did a search on "Patriot Act" and found about 40 references, including the current bills to rescind the "sunset clause". But, no version of the law itself. Google took me to the ACLU web site. There they have a PDF of the law, and a flyer with their concerns. I thought it might be a good idea to look at their concerns and verify them in reading the law. These are the issues identified in the law itself:

Expands terrorism laws to include "domestic terrorism" which could subject political organizations to surveillance, wiretapping, harassment, and criminal action for political advocacy.
Expands the ability of law enforcement to conduct secret searches, gives them wide powers of phone and Internet surveillance, and access to highly personal medical, financial, mental health, and student records with minimal judicial oversight. Allows FBI Agents to investigate American citizens for criminal matters without probable cause of crime if they say it is for "intelligence purposes."
Permits non-citizens to be jailed based on mere suspicion and to be denied re-admission to the US for engaging in free speech. Suspects convicted of no crime may be detained indefinitely in six month increments without meaningful judicial review.

Personally, I don't know what they really mean by "minimal judicial oversight" and "meaningful judicial review. Nothing in the law allows law enforcement to take actions without judicial approval--warrants are required. additionally, it requires the Attorney general to appear before Congress and detail those investigations:

"SEC. 502. CONGRESSIONAL OVERSIGHT.
"(a) On a semiannual basis, the Attorney General shall fully inform the Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence of the House of Representatives and the Select Committee on Intelligence of the Senate concerning all requests for the production of tangible things under section 402.
"(b) On a semiannual basis, the Attorney General shall provide to the Committees on the Judiciary of the House of Representatives and the Senate a report setting forth with respect to the preceding 6-month period--
"(1) the total number of applications made for orders approving requests for the production of tangible things under section 402; and
"(2) the total number of such orders either granted, modified, or denied.".

Their concern that political organizations might be subject to investigation might be warranted if this hadn't already been covered by Congressional oversight as well:

"(A) NOTICE.--
"(i) TO CONGRESSIONAL LEADERS.--Seven days before making a designation under this subsection, the Secretary shall, by classified communication, notify the Speaker and Minority Leader of the House of Representatives, the President pro tempore, Majority Leader, and Minority Leader of the Senate, and the members of the relevant committees of the House of Representatives and the Senate, in writing, of the intent to designate an organization under this subsection, together with the findings made under paragraph (1) with respect to that organization, and the factual basis therefor.
"(ii) PUBLICATION IN FEDERAL REGISTER.--The Secretary shall publish the designation in the Federal Register seven days after providing the notification under clause (i)."

This refers to the requirement for any group to be subject to surveillance under the law to be designated by the Secretary of State, with review by Congress, and the name of the organization published in the Federal Register. Not very secretive.

Other concerns of the ACLU outlined in their flyer have to do with Executive actions already in place:

8,000 Arab and South Asian immigrants have been interrogated because of their religion or ethnic background, not because of actual wrongdoing.

This is the standard "law enforcement" approach to anti-terrorism which was extant prior to 9/11. There is no mention of whether these "immigrants" are here legally or not, whether "wrongdoing" includes only terrorism laws or any petty crimes, or if there may have been links with these folks to other, known terrorists or organizations. The implication is that they were simply questioned based on their being (presumedly) Muslim. I doubt law enforcement has time to pick up people at random.

Thousands of men, mostly of Arab and South Asian origin, have been held in secretive federal custody for weeks and months, sometimes without any charges filed against them. The government has refused to publish their names and whereabouts, even when ordered to do so by the courts.

This is reference to, I believe, detainees at Gitmo. There is good reason not to publish their names: Accomplices will operate in the dark. I don't know whether it is common practice for the ACLU to insist on the publication of names for "ordinary" criminals or not. If someone is looking for this person, they might be smart to ask the Feds if that person is in custody. Or maybe they don't want to risk that. Further, an "armed combatant" is not a criminal detainee, but more akin to a prisoner of war. POWS, for example, are held indefinitely to keep them from rejoining the fight. The Geneva Accords we hear so much about prohibit a captured soldier from returning to battle. Yet some detainees who were released have already rejoined the fight. There are oversight provisions for this as well:

"(6) LIMITATION ON INDEFINITE DETENTION.--An alien detained solely under paragraph (1) who has not been removed under section 241(a)(1)(A), and whose removal is unlikely in the reasonably foreseeable future, may be detained for additional periods of up to six months only if the release of the alien will threaten the national security of the United States or the safety of the community or any person.

That falls under the semi-annual review by Congress.

The press and the public have been barred from immigration court hearings of those detained after September 11th and the courts are ordered to keep secret even that the hearings are taking place.

Why is it important for deportation hearings to be public? If fact is all that matters, why open the hearing to people wanting to make a political point? Here is the judicial oversight the ACLU says it wants, yet even that doesn't satisfy what they really want. So what do they want?

The government is allowed to monitor communications between federal detainees and their lawyers, destroying the attorney/client privilege and threatening the right to counsel.

Any court presented with eveidence gleaned from such monitoring would throw it out. The reason for monitoring such discussion is to get leads on other groups or planned operations. Let's not let an attack actually take place if we can avoid it.

New Attorney General Guidelines allow FBI spying on religious and political organizations and individuals without having evidence of wrongdoing.

As explained above, he can't do this unless the group is on the approved list published in the Federal Register.

President Bush has ordered military commissions to be set up to try suspected terrorists who are not citizens. They can convict based on hearsay and secret evidence by only two-thirds vote.

A two-thirds majority is standard for military courts-martial. I don't like the idea of unanimous jury decisions for the most part because a defense attorney can focus his attentions on a single juror and get an acquittal.

American citizens suspected of terrorism are being held indefinitely in military custody without being charged and without access to lawyers.

Actually, I heard John Kerry phrase it in a slightly different manner. He said lawyers aren't being given access to detainees. Which do you think is more important in his mind? Why, then, is there concern about attorney/client privilege? I can't think of a single American citizen being held in this condition. Perhaps there are. The ones I am aware of just recently had their hearings before the Supreme Court.

That's as simple an explanation as I can give in this forum. I would recommend anyone with concerns about the law itself to download a copy and read it. I bet I'm one of the very few non-lawyers in this country who have done it. As John mentioned in a comment on an earlier post, the sunset clause is a good thing. It makes Congress go back and address the issues after some time in place. I only wish they would do this with some intellectual integrity rather than in a political mode.

****UPDATE****

La Shawn provided this link to a debate on this issue.

Posted by Bunker at 09:03 AM | Comments (5) | TrackBack (1)

June 21, 2004

Charity Reform

All I can say is that it is about time. Charities' Tax Breaks Scrutinized.

I've considered different ways to make a fast buck while doing virtually nothing. The best way I've found is to set up a non-profit organization, pay myself a pittance, and live off the foundation. No income tax (or very little) and no accountability. No wonder we have so many in this country.

Panel members will also look at the idea of making public far more of the records and filings of nonprofits.

If they are operating tax-free, I think all financial records should be made public.

Posted by Bunker at 09:01 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

June 16, 2004

Health Insurance

I've decided to start a new campaign to ensure universal health care insurance in the US. As with anything that includes the word "universal", this will require the efforts of a large number of people. I've already written my Congressman, the Honorable Solomon P. Ortiz, to let him know how I think he should look at this. He wrote back to tell me he stands behind me 100%:

Thank you for contacting me regarding important issues that we are facing in the 108th Congress. As always, it is a pleasure to hear from you.
It is always valuable to hear from the citizens whom I represent in the 27th District of Texas. Your opinions are always welcome and instrumental in gauging the pulse of my constituents on significant matters that come before the Congress for consideration. Please be assured that when the full House of Representatives debates these issues in the 108th Congress, I will keep your views clearly in mind.
Once again, thank you for contacting me about these issues. Please feel free to contact me whenever you have an interest in an issue at the federal level.

Now, who can argue with that? Is the man sincere, or what? He is all over those issues, as is obvious from his letter.

Back to universal health care! Every state requires people who own a vehicle to have insurance on that vehicle. We can now solve the problem of health insurance in exactly the same way. Only this time, we'll do it right. I think the Congress needs to get off its collective butt and write a new law requiring everyone in the United States to purchase health insurance.

Problem solved, and solved in a way that will satisfy everyone, just as mandatory car insurance has solved the problems of uninsured motorists and the rising cost of car repair.

Write your Congressman today!

Posted by Bunker at 06:24 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

June 15, 2004

Separation

Whatever happened to the Separation of Church and State?

Posted by Bunker at 11:32 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Yosemite

To me, the Sierra Club has always been a group of wealthy people who want to keep wilderness areas to themselves. There are many common folk who have joined the organization because they believe in the purported mission. But all the activists seem to be they type who can take off when they want to and be transported by helicopter to some remote area for a weekend with nature.

Most of us don't have that luxury, and that's just the way they like it.

I remember a special on television about a remote area in Idaho or Washington which is owned by one of the local tribes. It is beautiful, a forested Eden next to a crystal river. The tribe wants to develop the area. Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., and his friends at the Sierra Club don't want to see that happen. Right now, the only access is by helicopter or a hike through the mountains for a day or two. So, most of us will never have the chance to visit this place, but Junior can take his private jet and charter a helicopter to get there any time he wants.

Thomas Sowell writes of a similar issue at Yosemite.

Groups like the Sierra Club and other environmental zealots have for years been trying to reduce the number of people visiting our national parks. They seem to think that our national parks are their own private property, and that it would be best if the unwashed masses are kept out as much as possible, leaving the backpackers to enjoy these parks in seclusion.

I haven't been there myself since the mid 60s, but think it is one of the most beautiful places on Earth. I understand, though, that it was overrun not long after I visited by flower children from Frisco wanting to get back to nature. They trashed it. It has since regained its status as a place for all Americans, but the Sierra Club and other environmental groups continue to try to limit visitors by getting laws enacted to restrict vehicular traffic--the only way to get there unless you can canoe up the Merced river.

Teddy Roosevelt's vision was to have nature retained in its glory for all Americans to enjoy. Maybe the Feds should make helicopters available to us all.

Posted by Bunker at 10:56 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack (0)

Old Glory

Mark Alexander of The Federalist keeps me updated through email on a regular basis. Yesterday he sent a tribute to the US Flag.

We are unique in the world for honoring the banner which symbolizes out nation. It represents us all. Some in this country don't believe that, but everyone else in the world does. While people in other nations carry large posters with photographs of people, we carry flags. We honor our country and its Constitution, not individuals. A single person may be President, but his role is to serve us. That thought is alien to most people in this world.

The Pledge of Allegiance is "to the flag", not to "The Supreme Leader." Our men and women in the military, Civil Service employees, and every politician holding national office swear allegiance to the Constitution, not to a president or king.

Copy the file I've linked, and save it for reference next time you display our flag. Independence Day is just around the corner.

Posted by Bunker at 05:43 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

June 06, 2004

Reagan

Punctilious has an excellent pictorial tribute to our 40th President. I don't think I could come up with anything better.

During the dark days of Jimmy Carter's Presidency, I consistently whined about politicians being too cowardly to take the steps necessary to get our economy under control That is, lessen control of the economy by the government. It was something that needed several years to take root, maybe as many as five. What politician is willing to take action that would see no results before the next election?

Ronald Reagan.

He did things boldly. He said what he meant and meant what he said.

God Bless you, Mr. President.

Posted by Bunker at 12:10 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

May 28, 2004

EPA and "Big Oil"

This morning's NPR story was about refineries. The reporter visited our Valero Refinery here in Corpus Christi to gather information for his report, and climbed the ladders on cracking towers to get a feel for how things operated.

He described the problem of cost as it related to EPA requirements fairly well. Then he left it to an environmentalist to rebutt the claim that increased emissions standards caused increases in fuel costs. The implication was that oil companies attribute all the current increases to environmental regulation. The expert disputed that saying the rules added only about 10-20 cents to each gallon.

I don't think I've ever heard anything from the oil companies that claimed such a thing. But I always wonder when someone who is an activist of any kind ever fully comprehends what costs actually are. Without having been in the engineering, management, or accounting system of an industry, how can you reasonably determine such a thing?

Capital investment can be a shadowy thing. There are costs involved which outsiders never think about. Consider, for example, replacing a cooling tower at a facility. The expense of the tower is only a small part of the cost. There is interest on that money (loss of interest if cash is used, or interest on a loan), the cost of engineering to develop a specification and statement of work, cost of legal review of a contract, cost of coordination with local, state, and government regulators, cost of disposal of the old tower, cost of any hazardous material abatement, and cost of downtime in the facility. Many more issues increase the cost.

The reporter said that "streamlining" (you could hear the scare quotes in his voice) EPA requirements, as the Bush Administration wants to do, would increase the sulfer content of gasoline, and cause health problems for Americans. Common misperception of "streamlining".

What the EPA currently requires is that a facility which upgrades its processes and adds any environmental improvements must make the same environmental upgrade in the entire facility. What the administration wants to do is allow companies to make improvements.

The EPA requirements are akin to making you replace every window in your house with a more energy-efficient model if you break a pane and replace that single window. A lofty goal, right? Unfortunately, companies cannot afford that large a capital outlay at a given time. Every company would like to improve the efficiency of their physical plant at the earliest convenience. It improves their profit. But given the choice between going under and not making any changes, companies won't make changes. That is what streamlining addresses. That is how loosening EPA requirements actually improves the environment.

If the company has ten cooling towers, as in the example above, they can replace them one at a time over a period of years. Does that improve the environment? Yes, and the company remains solvent. In fact, it probably improves profits at the same time. I get the impression that environmental activists would actually prefer to see companies fold. Then they produce nothing that endangers the environment.

Wouldn't it be nice if none of us had a job? We'd never have to work again!

Posted by Bunker at 06:16 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)

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