Day: August 21, 2015

Good feeling about Rep. Post

To the Editor: Even though we’re registered in different parties, I came away with a good feeling about Rep. Bill Post (Post talks about first year in Capitol, Keizertimes, Aug. 14). A couple of really positive things stood out. So, let me get one “partisan” issue out of the way. He stated: “Business will always make the right choice. We don’t need government to tell us.” Business is always right? Squinting on that one.  We do need some government, though less of it. When Rep. Post said, “The majority party uses Sine Die as a tool. If there was a Republican majority and this happened, I’ll still stand up and say this is wrong,” my response was a loud yes. Sine Die is bad legislating, bad politics, and thanks to him for being willing to make such a pledge, and do it publicly to boot. Last, this met me on several levels: “I was the first Republican to get a bill signed by the governor (Kate Brown),” Post said. “It was a pro-business bill to get rid of some restrictions. The governor and I have a unique relationship. She really likes me for some reason, even though we are opposites. She showed us freshmen around and took me by the arm. She said, ‘I know I can count on you for the transportation package, right?’ I said ‘No.’ She...

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Hunting for a miracle on global warming

By MICHAEL GERSON   In recognition that internet questionnaires get more eyeballs than earnest columns on energy policy, here is today’s quiz on obscure presidential history: When President George W. Bush met Bill Gates for the first time, the topic of discussion was (A) nuclear power, (B) rural internet access, (C) global health, or (D) all of those subjects, in considerable depth, in that order. Those who find “D” surprising don’t get the concept of leading test questions, and don’t know much about either participant. As a fly on the wall at their lunch, I watched two men with a wonkish interest in energy policy talk over my head for 15 or 20 minutes about nuclear power plant design. (Gates has since become a major investor in one design that would utilize depleted uranium, essentially running on its own waste.) One of Gates’ contributions as a public-minded billionaire—as opposed to turning the Republican presidential nomination process into a second-rate reality television show —is to bring a dose of reality to the achievement of large humanitarian goals. The (almost) end of polio. The vaccination of children on a global scale. In the case of energy, rigor requires rethinking. Gates is ruthless (and not always politically correct) in pressing the assumptions of the environmental movement to their logical conclusion. If climate scientists are right about the pace of global warming, and about...

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2016 candidates rattle the war saber

A couple of weeks ago, syndicated columnist Austin Bay wrote about World War II in reference to the number of fanatics in Germany and Japan who brought about that awful conflict and whose end in Europe and finale in Asia came with the detonation of two atomic bombs.  There were efforts all around the planet during the 1930s to prevent it while the U.S. involvement got underway with an Imperial Japan attack on Pearl Harbor in December, 1941. World War II’s cost in American lives exceeded 100,000 in the Pacific theatre alone. The death count in Vietnam of U.S. service men and women is recorded on the Vietnam War Memorial in Washington. There are 58,195 names on it. More recently the count of those Americans who perished in Iraq or died later has reached a total of 73,846 with many more every day succumbing to their wounds or committing suicide.  The number told us by the Bush administration is around 4,000 because those folks lied again by counting only those Americans who died with their boots on in Iraq; the real count is the higher 73,846. Now who are the fanatics that want more war and thereby the deaths upon more deaths on the battlefield?  These will again be the children of families from all over America.  There will be, then, tens of thousands of families left to grieve with little or no benefit to the people of our nation; rather, those who gain from these...

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