Tuesday, May 27, 2008

It's OK to Break the Law. We're Catholics...

This from the Houston Chronicle, via PoliPundit:

SAN ANTONIO — A group of faith-driven activists is trying to organize a network to help illegal immigrants who fear new local immigration-related laws and massive raids.

The advocates — all Catholic — hope to provide places to stay, food and health care for immigrants. They have a few families who have volunteered to host immigrants, but ultimately want to open a shelter.

This article, in turn, was taken from the AP, staunchly anti-American in all things. Reading the carefully sanitized lede above, you'd think we're dealing with a bunch of heroes trying to right the wrongs perpetrated by our evil government. How do we know this? Well, the good guys are Catholics, that's how. Game, set, and match. Problem is, the actions above are part and parcel of the socialist "New Sanctuary Movement," which in turn is based on an earlier "Sanctuary Movement." And both, in turn, are based on Marxist-inspired "Liberation Theology" which was championed in the 1960s and early 1970s, but later turned back by Rome which recognized a Marxist front group when it saw one.

Fellow travelers of the "New Sanctuary Movement" include the Islamofascist front group CAIR, who have obvious reasons for thwarting the goal of secure US borders. Others include the Interfaith Worker Justice "movement" which is funded by the Marxist Tides Foundation and some additional usual suspects.

The Catholic Church explicitly denounced Liberation Theology and its Marxist ties as outlined in a complex document put out by Sacred Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith in 1984. Nothing has really changed since then. The current socalled "New Sanctuary Movement" is simply Marxism in sheep's clothing, making useful idiots out of left-leaning Catholics and clergy who are prodded to employ the ancient tradition of "sanctuary" in their churches to thwart the will of the American people and undermine our traditions and laws, both of which encourage LEGAL immigration. "Catholics" they are not. They are Marxists first and foremost, although some are too dumb to know the difference.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Congressional Idiotarians = Higher Oil Prices

Yesterday, we had the laughable spectacle of Congress calling the oil companies on the carpet to explain how those companies were screwing the American consumer with "windfall profits." Leave it to the Democrats, particularly that other Socialist Senator from Vermont, Patrick Leahy (Idiotarian-VT), to launch an instant Grand Inquisition on TV after rounding up the usual suspects.

But, as the oil execs ably explained between bouts of Senatorial grandstanding, the problem here is that "national oil companies" (read Saudi Arabia, Venezuela, and their ilk) own not only the oil under the ground but the companies that produce it. American oil "giants" don't really own very much oil at all. And the huge resources of oil, gas, and coal that America has--which, if developed, could clearly blunt the current oil mania--are inaccessible, not because of the corporate oil giants, but because the production of fossil fuels in this country has been effectively terminated due to the predations of eco-freaks and their congressional enablers.

PowerLine has some great sound bits on this. Elaborating on the observation above, an Exxon Mobil exec observed that:
Exxon Mobil is the largest U.S. oil and gas company, but we account for only 2 percent of global energy production, only 3 percent of global oil production, only 6 percent of global refining capacity, and only 1 percent of global petroleum reserves. With respect to petroleum reserves, we rank 14th. Government-owned national oil companies dominate the top spots. For an American company to succeed in this competitive landscape and go head to head with huge government-backed national oil companies, it needs financial strength and scale to execute massive complex energy projects requiring enormous long-term investments.

To simply maintain our current operations and make needed capital investments, Exxon Mobil spends nearly $1 billion each day.

So much for "windfall profits."

In case the obtuse Dems in the audience didn't "get it," a Shell exec elaborated further:
...in the United States, access to our own oil and gas resources has been limited for the last 30 years, prohibiting companies such as Shell from exploring and developing resources for the benefit of the American people.

Senator Sessions, I agree, it is not a free market.

According to the Department of the Interior, 62 percent of all on-shore federal lands are off limits to oil and gas developments, with restrictions applying to 92 percent of all federal lands. We have an outer continental shelf moratorium on the Atlantic Ocean, an outer continental shelf moratorium on the Pacific Ocean, an outer continental shelf moratorium on the eastern Gulf of Mexico, congressional bans on on-shore oil and gas activities in specific areas of the Rockies and Alaska, and even a congressional ban on doing an analysis of the resource potential for oil and gas in the Atlantic, Pacific and eastern Gulf of Mexico.

The Argonne National Laboratory did a report in 2004 that identified 40 specific federal policy areas that halt, limit, delay or restrict natural gas projects.
That was the windup. Here's the pitch:
The cumulative effect of these policies has been to discourage U.S. investment and send U.S. companies outside the United States to produce new supplies.

As a result, U.S. production has declined so much that nearly 60 percent of daily consumption comes from foreign sources.

The problem of access can be solved in this country by the same government that has prohibited it. Congress could have chosen to lift some or all of the current restrictions on exportation and production of oil and gas. Congress could provide national policy to reverse the persistent decline of domestically secure natural resource development.

(Bold text highlighted by Wonker.)

Senator Orrin Hatch (R-UT) worked with the Shell exec to pinch in on further truths:
HATCH: ...we're talking about Utah, Colorado and Wyoming. It's fair to say that they're not considered part of America's $22 billion of proven reserves.

HOFMEISTER: Not at all.

HATCH: No, but experts agree that there's between 800 billion to almost 2 trillion barrels of oil that could be recoverable there, and that's good oil, isn't it?

HOFMEISTER: That's correct.

HATCH: It could be recovered at somewhere between $30 and $40 a barrel?

HOFMEISTER: I think those costs are probably a bit dated now, based upon what we've seen in the inflation...

HATCH: Well, somewhere in that area.

HOFMEISTER: I don't know what the exact cost would be, but, you know, if there is more supply, I think inflation in the oil industry would be cracked. And we are facing severe inflation because of the limited amount of supply against the demand.

HATCH: I guess what I'm saying, though, is that if we started to develop the oil shale in those three states we could do it within this framework of over $100 a barrel and make a profit.

HOFMEISTER: I believe we could.

HATCH: And we could help our country alleviate its oil pressures.


HATCH: But they're stopping us from doing that right here, as we sit here. We just had a hearing last week where Democrats had stopped the ability to do that, in at least Colorado.

HOFMEISTER: Well, as I said in my opening statement, I think the public policy constraints on the supply side in this country are a disservice to the American consumer.

Yeah, they are. (Bold text above courtesy of Wonker.)

The Dems are actually thrilled that oil is currently being goosed upward by speculators at the rate of 2-5 bucks a day which, in pretty short order, is going to cause mass-layoffs when the ripple effect is felt across the housing weakened economy, which is actually attempting to recover. Why? Because it's all about blaming the Republicans. Problem is, they just might succeed, which shows you how thoroughly these leftists have captured the media machine.

In point of fact, since Nixon first attempted to impose some rationality on the oil situation back in the 1970s, the Democrats and their eco-freak allies have thwarted each and every attempt to achieve, if not energy independence, then energy parity with the rest of the oil producing nations. We can't extract oil because it might displace a couple of polar bears. We can't extract oil shale because it might spoil somebody's view. We can't burn coal because it's dirty. We can't use nukes because we'll all be killed. We can't build more hydro because that messes with fish.

You get the picture. The Dems conduct show trials and villainize Republicans and oil companies for causing the disaster for which the Democrats themselves are exclusively responsible. Just shows you how effective Party Discipline--enforced with a little bravado, chutzpah, and outright lying--can be in completely obliterating the truth.

Yesterday's hearings didn't turn out quite as the Dems had expected. Truth sneaked out anyway. But you'll never hear that if all you do is read the local paper or listen to the MSM's Nightly Snooze.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

No Crisis for Boys in School

Hey, great news! Read our headline! Problem solved!

Actually, it's not our headline. It's a condensed version of the headline for an A-1 above-the-fold story that ran in the Washington Post yesterday. The actual headline reads:

No Crisis for Boys in School, Study Says

Now being the natural born skeptic that he is, Wonker immediately smelled a rat. Who did the "study?" Why, none other than the American Association of University Women, that's who. And since you read this in the Washington Post, well, it must be true.

To make a long story short, the "study" claims that there is no crisis facing our school system due to the fact that boys are significantly underperforming girls. In typical leftist fashion, the "study" alleges that there is no problem and the study proves it. And furthermore, if there WERE a problem (note the hedge), it would be racially and/or economically oriented, and wouldn't be affecting nice white boys.

This is the typical Marxist whitewash that flies in the face of numerous other studies conclusively illustrating that, after several decades of gender-feminized education, boys are underperforming girls in school by a significant margin. Further, fewer boys are going to college. Worse, fewer still are actually graduating.

This is what you get when you forcefully apply class-struggle doctrine to practically anything without giving the consequences much thought. In this case, "privileged" boys were "deprivileged" in order to "privilege" girls. The effect is easily predictable. Let me elaborate.

Back when Wonk was enjoying his short, happy career as an English professor (without benefit of rank or tenure), girls indeed were called on less often and taken less seriously by a great many instructors. This was clearly wrong and held many of them back, proving an impediment to higher achievement. Obviously there was a social interaction that had to be fixed.

But in typical leftist fashion, rather than fix the problem by leveling the playing field, it was transformed into class struggle, pitting the proletariat--in this case women--vs. the capitalists or the bourgeoisie (take your pick) as represented by male instructors and students. The leftist solution to this issue was standard-issue Marx: reverse polarity and elevate the women while putting down the men.

It's been pretty effective, too, as the majority of studies of this issue have proved over the years. Leftists aren't really interested in solving the problem. They're basically fascists at heart. Rather than create equal opportunity to solve a once-legitimate issue, they simply wish to change places with the alleged oppressors and become the oppressors themselves. Anyone who questions their motives gets denounced publicly and often.

The bogus AAUW "study" trumpeted in the Post is an attempt to belittle and dismiss a major threat to the current status quo of female leftist educational hegemony. Which, in the educational establishment at least, has swapped alleged male dominance with its very real opposite. The problem for AAUW, like all leftist organizations, is maintaining this dominance once the truth has come out. They can obviously depend on the usual media shills, like the Washington Post, to help them out. Once the left has seized yet another cultural and social beach head, it has no intent of letting go.

BTW, AAUW, we're not the only ones who noticed this collusional sham science. PowerLine comments on it here.

Monday, May 19, 2008

The Problem with Conservatives

Victor Davis Hanson has taken a look at the Republican Party--currently behaving like a mass-cloning of the Three Stooges--and has succinctly distilled this miserable mess:

They forgot who they were and can’t explain what they might be.

That pretty much sums it up. From fiscally-responsible adults, they've transformed into spendthrift, adolescent children. From supporting their president, they've turned instead toward the Dem's favored "Bush did it" mantra as an excuse for everything. From supporting the Afghani-Iraqi phases of the Global War on Terror, they're jumping on the defeatist-withdrawal wagon, apparently hoping to cement a new "defeat" like the one we allegedly had in Vietnam. (In actuality, we were never "defeated" there. Congress simply terminated the money. Anyone for for an instant replay?)

You get the drift. When Republicans, particularly Conservative Republicans (there are other kinds) start acting like Democrats, they come off as second-best Democrats and lose elections.

If a Republican politician's behavior and actions cause voters to conclude that he or she is actually an amateur Democrat, they'll invariably choose the real Democrat over the imposter. Every time.

It's amazing that it took the Republican bozos on the Hill only about 10 years to completely squander the Reagan Revolution and the brilliant, Gingrich-led Conservative takeover of the House. But when you see the Democrats passionately committed to that final cattle-drive toward outright Euro-style Socialism while the so-called Conservative Republicans just sit there wringing their hands and doing the same stupid things that got them into the current pickle in the first place, you're forced to realize that the Stupid Party is living up to its name. Which very shortly will consign them to back-bench status for another 50+ years.

Hansen has some good ideas for countering this slow, political suicide in his article, which everyone who cares about this issue had ought to read. The current batch of Republicrats, though, will probably skip it.

Friday, May 02, 2008

Universities: Pink Collar Ghettos?

Interesting exchange in the female blogosphere, where two docs effectively debate what's been happening to men in an increasingly feminized society.

Dr. Melissa seems to have started it:
What the world needs more of is manly men. I've blogged about this before, but it's worth repeating. A girlfriend of mine told me that her three best girlfriends all have husbands that stay home while their wives work and the men sit around complaining about their wives.
Gee, what a concept. Seems some professional women like Dr. Melissa are getting tired of what kind of men the gender feminazis have succeeded in creating: an awful lot of passive wussies. Like the alleged Chinese proverb more or less says, don't wish too hard for something. You just might get it.

She continues:
Societally, it seems like men don't value or seem to be valued for manliness. A strong, hard-working, driven guy has been replaced with a soft, unmotivated, aimless man who can't make a declarative sentence or find the will to do what needs to be done. Basically, too many men have become pansies. Gay men need to butch up, too.

Somewhere between the hypermasculinity of Islamofascism and the gang culture on one hand and the effete softness of the bitchy out-of-work, tears in his beer dude on the other, there's a balance. To me, the honor, strength and drive shown by men who've been through military training serves as a good model of manly behavior.
Butch up. There you go. I'd have expressed this somewhat differently. But in this fashionably anti-het age in which we live, you get the point.

Dr. Helen, (spousal unit of Instapundit) on the other hand, gives the un-fairer sex a little more credit for creative thinking:
Have men become "pansies" (your words, not mine) using this strategy? I don't think so. They have become strategic. This is different than aimless. Aimless suggests no purpose. Men may look aimless but underneath it all they actually have a purpose--to protect themselves from a society that considers men responsible for the welfare of women and children but offers them little or nothing in return. Who can blame them?
Well, yeah. But "The Other Side" (blogger Kim du Toit) agrees with 'em both. Sort of:
I agree with both of them, a little—although I think Helen gives men too much credit for being devious and scheming—kinda like women...

You want to know why CEOs earn so much these days? It’s because of all the “teaming” and diversified responsibility which takes place in their corporations—to the point where only the “C” class can actually make decisions.

It’s the corporate version of kids’ soccer matches where nobody keeps score, lest the losers get their feelings hurt.

Here’s where the fun begins, by the way. I don’t think that men are as subtle or as perceptive as Dr. Helen thinks they are. They can recognize a game in which the odds have been stacked against them, of course—but I don’t think they work the system as she thinks they do.

What they do is refuse to play.

What’s the point of being ambitious or hard-working, when your efforts will be subsumed in a “task force” or “team” project, and others get the credit for your work? What’s the point of being a man, when all you get from it is scorn from women and from men who behave like women?

Interesting thought, which leads the Kimster to this conclusion:
And if some harpy tells them to “butch up”, they say, “Bite me”.

When women finally do get everything they wanted, I wonder whether they’ll enjoy living in the world they’ve created.

Good question. Which is what got Dr. Helen to the Pink Collar stuff we advertised in our headline. The university system is where today's men start to run into the wimpy, PC crap, since that's where spineless men and feminazis tentatively co-exist, with the feminazis holding the upper hand, so to speak. Real guys are immensely turned off by this environment, yet they're forced to endure it to get the necessary credentials, dealing with loads of anti-U.S., anti-capitalist, anti-Western spleen en route. Small wonder why guys hate school from K-8 thru post-graduate. It's insulting, demeaning, and stupid to put up with the idiotic sideshows while attempting to pursue education and fathom a career path. Plus, it's entirely too girly.

Dr. Helen describes one male's path around this nonsense to bolster her argument:
For example, I recently talked with my accountant, a man who is getting an advanced degree online. He didn't want to go to a PC university and sit through a bunch of professors putting down his gender or having him do ridiculous amounts of tedious and inefficient paperwork that he found boring. Instead, he is taking classes that he enjoys on his schedule. The male nurse at my doctor's office is getting his degree online because he doesn't want to deal with the "crap" that a regular university expects students to listen to on an ongoing basis. He stated that he simply reads the material and takes the tests and doesn't have to deal with the PC milieu that would leave him annoyed and disgruntled. Both of these men have successful careers and while I don't know what they make, I bet it is plenty enough to pay for whatever lifestyle they want to enjoy.
She concludes this round by stating:
It's no wonder universities are turning into pink collar ghettos. Men are finding other avenues that are fulfilling and fit in with their lifestyle. With the rise of technology and alternative ways to make a living and live one's lifestyle, I have no doubt that most men will find what works for them.
This is actually a pretty civil, provocative little debate. Kim and the Doctors essentially agree on the point. Real, actual men have had it up to here with liberal, PC, male-bashing nonsense, whether in the corporate or university environment. It's axiomatic to them that this is all crap. But our panelists are not quite in agreement as to how or in what manner the men are really dealing with it. Have they bought in? Are they subversive? Have they figured out how to get their own way without tipping their collective hand?

Being an actual real man with the wreckage of an intellectual career well behind me, I can help. Men DO know what they're doing. Teddy Roosevelt said it best: Speak softly and carry a big stick.

Maybe better still, to paraphrase the English meaning behind a famous (and bogus) legal Latin cliche: Never let the bitches wear you down.

Or, best of all, op. cit. above in the contemporary idiom: Bite me.

And have a nice day.

More on the Eco-Freaks and How They're Bankrupting Us

If you haven't read Luther's excellent post on Dr. Zubrin below, do it now.

I'd especially commend his conclusion, which gets to the real root of the larger problem:
Ethanol from corn or sugar is not new, does not work well, and can only be supported with subsidies and state intervention in markets. That support causes a major problem in food markets, now noticed in screaming headlines across the world. Even Greens are starting to advocate nuclear powerplants. We've known for thirty years that there's enough shale oil and gas in Wyoming to fuel America for centuries. Congress refuses to do anything except mandate bad solutions like ethanol. It is time perhaps for Congress to start representing the people, instead of a single special interest that shells out bucks for campaign money...
Frankly, I'd like to know when the average American is going to wake up and stick a pitchfork into the increasingly insane Eco-Freak movement in this country. It's THEY, not Bush, the Chi-coms, or even the Democrats who are bankrupting this country and destroying its economy. (Although the Dems do their level best to help.)

We're talking energy here. And we're talking the near-complete triumph of illogic in this situation. Let's see. Oil is too expensive, so let's make ethanol from corn to replace oil. And to make it cheaper, let's subsidize it with taxpayer money. Meanwhile, let's denounce oil company "windfall" profits while preventing them from using those profits to drill for oil on both U.S. continental shelves as well as in Alaska where such exploration might force a few dozen elk to take a 10 minute detour.

And let's not burn coal, since we have plenty of it, because it creates pollution and acid rain. Let's just sell it to the Chinese so THEY can create pollution and acid rain (without the need for any coal scrubbers) while we freeze but feel virtuous. Meanwhile, we can buy more expensive oil from the Saudis so they can fund more radical madrassas to train more radical students so they can kill even more of us so we eventually won't have to use so much energy.

And let's shut down all the wind-turbines, since they kill birds and bats. And above all, let's at least not put any of those where Ted Kennedy can see them. Let's put them all in West Virginia where all those gun-toting cretins live. And then we can shut them down, since they kill birds and bats.

And let's not build nukes, because they provide clean, green energy. Because nukes cause mushroom clouds that are harmful to children and other living things. And speaking of living things, let's not wear furs to take up the warmth slack because that's a violation of animal rights.

And while we're at it, let's not build solar farms in the desert. It creates visual pollution. And besides, solar farms don't produce oil, which we need to fuel our Hummers and SUVs and private jets as we travel the world telling people not to buy Hummers, SUVs, and private jets and to use one sheet of toilet paper per necessary room session to save our trees and save our planet.

And when the entire economy collapses, let's just blame Bush.

You think we're kidding? Just try to put the energy logic of the Eco-Freaks to work, and an ambiguous, random chain of phony, indefensible nonsense like the above is what results. It's the same far-left game, really. Listen to us, because we're better, smarter, and more virtuous than you. But when you try to parse out the message, all you come up with is the snake oil they're selling. And don't get us started on carbon credits, the latest example of popular delusions and the madness of crowds.

He's Ba-a-a-ack!

What, again? For the umpty-umpth time, Wonk is attempting yet another blog comeback after disappearing yet again. Add to deaths in the family a surprise additional wrinkle. The demise of a long-estranged relative who ended up expiring intestate. A poor idea in tax-happy Ohio.

Wonk is back in DC again, and America's lawyerly class has been enriched again. We all are definitely in the wrong profession.

Meanwhile, I'm catching up on Luther's brilliance which really has been quite non-stop, hasn't it?

Thursday, May 01, 2008

Stick to Mars, Dr. Zubrin

With his alarmist call for American oil independence (“Breaking OPEC’s Grip”), Robert Zubrin joins a long tradition of pundits who have used national security as an excuse to abandon consumer markets in order to forward their Big Government schemes. Add the Mideast “oil cartel” to Japan and China as declared threats to our manufacturing base requiring protection...Whatever the merits of his argument, Zubrin sadly uses the same rhetorical device to sell flex-fuel mandates as Gore & co. make for Kyoto: if you disagree, you are a proponent of petroterrorism, or in the latter case, a polar-bear killer...Flex Fuel Folly, Henry Payne, Planet Gore National Review Online, 2/22/08

The trouble with a smart guy like Dr. Zubrin is that, with his origins in big science, funded primarily by Big Government, he has a limited understanding of such things as market. The primary principle in analyzing a market is supply and demand. In a given market, if you divert a commodity's supply, as with a government subsidy of ethanol production from corn, it will directly impact supply of corn for other purposes, such as food.

NASA, to which Zubrin presented his Mars Direct program some years back, had a fling with "market" back in the planning stages of the space shuttle, one which the author's father, a very successful marketer, was invited to participate in. The idea was that payloads would pay for the shuttle's operations. The author's father later said he wished he had never taken the offer, for a simple reason. A government agency has no conception of business operations. In the business world you can't call on the Commerce Committee to introduce new funding authorization if your project isn't making money. The shuttle's costs were never properly analyzed. In the end, there was no way the payloads could pay for operations if the shuttle was to be a competitive launching system.

Zubrin seems to have about the same idea regarding the energy problems of the early 21st century.

He says that all Congress has to do is “pass a law requiring that all new cars sold in the U.S. be flex-fueled” (that is, alcohol-fuel compatible) and — voila! — alcohol fuels will become competitive....(Flex-Fuel Folly, cont'd)

This kind of magic thinking has surrounded legislation for a long time, so Dr. Zubrin can't be fairly accused of original ignorance. He's only going into an old frontier where thousands have gone before.

Heavily dependent on OPEC oil, Brazil embarked on a national plan of oil independence during the last oil price panic in the 1970s. Dubbed “Proalcool,” the central government nationalized its largest energy company to goose ethanol production, massively subsidized sugar ethanol, mandated the production of ethanol cars, and mandated at least a 25 percent mix of ethanol in gasoline. In effect, government took over its domestic energy sector in the name of national security....there were unintended consequences. Inflation soared thanks to government spending and an agricultural economy now skewed towards fuel — not food — production. Brazil suffered widespread environmental degradation with the rush to convert cropland to fuel, and ultimately — with the collapse of oil prices a mere decade later — the program failed because ethanol is fundamentally an uncompetitive fuel source relative to oil....(Flex-Fuel Folly, cont'd)

The problem with many scientists is that they only see individual processes, not the whole ecology as it were. The whole direction of science since the 18th century until the stirrings of chaos and complexity theory in the 1960s was precisely opposite the strategy of studying overall views and consequences. This is great if you're trying to derive a fundamental law, such as the behavior of a gas under pressure. But that method's dependency on a closed system is fatal in large-scale analysis.

A practical understanding of broader consequences, called "seeing the big picture" by business people, is informed by market decisions too complex to analyze individually, as one might a container of pressurized helium. A business has to take the measure of consequences by broad statistical analysis in market studies. The methods aren't very different from those used to study individual processes, but are held in contempt by representatives of and advocates for state intervention in the economy. Payne emphasizes this strongly but I doubt Dr. Zubrin will pay attention until food rioters are at his local supermarket.

U.S. prosperity is due in part to free markets determining our most efficient fuel sources. Indeed, as oil topped $50 a barrel, Canadian oil sands have become viable, making that country our leading oil exporter (hardly Zubrin’s caricature of a terrorist oil country holding us hostage)...Left alone, free markets might ultimately determine that coal-to-oil is the best alternative to gas, or hydrogen, or even ethanol. . . . But Zubrin would rather strangle the U.S. economy with subsidies and decrees for an ethanol technology that has not yet proven itself worthy in the marketplace....(Flex-Fuel Folly, cont'd)

Dr. Zubrin's conceptions for interplanetary, human-crewed travel are brilliant, but as an economist, he offers very little except politically easy answers for a very complex problem that affects the entire industrial world. In sum, we have reached the stage where the quantity of petroleum is not sufficient to meet demand. Price, the most powerful indicator in a market, is shouting a message: either find a way to increase the energy output of existing supplies, or develop something new.

Ethanol from corn or sugar is not new, does not work well, and can only be supported with subsidies and state intervention in markets. That support causes a major problem in food markets, now noticed in screaming headlines across the world. Even Greens are starting to advocate nuclear powerplants. We've known for thirty years that there's enough shale oil and gas in Wyoming to fuel America for centuries. Congress refuses to do anything except mandate bad solutions like ethanol. It is time perhaps for Congress to start representing the people, instead of a single special interest that shells out bucks for campaign money, and for Dr. Zubrin to figure out a way to privately finance Mars Direct.