Archive for June, 2008

Obama supports higher prices for food and gasoline

Monday, June 23rd, 2008

Obama supports higher prices for food and gasoline. Or at least that is what one would have to conclude from Obama’s support for ethanol.

According to the New York Times, Barack Obama is a big ethanol supporter.

When VeraSun Energy inaugurated a new ethanol processing plant last summer in Charles City, Iowa, some of that industry’s most prominent boosters showed up. Leaders of the National Corn Growers Association and the Renewable Fuels Association, for instance, came to help cut the ribbon — and so did Senator Barack Obama.

Then running far behind Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton in name recognition and in the polls, Mr. Obama was in the midst of a campaign swing through the state where he would eventually register his first caucus victory. And as befits a senator from Illinois, the country’s second largest corn-producing state, he delivered a ringing endorsement of ethanol as an alternative fuel.

Mr. Obama is running as a reformer who is seeking to reduce the influence of special interests. But like any other politician, he has powerful constituencies that help shape his views. And when it comes to domestic ethanol, almost all of which is made from corn, he also has advisers and prominent supporters with close ties to the industry at a time when energy policy is a point of sharp contrast between the parties and their presidential candidates.

Obama is not just a supporter of ethanol as an alternative fuel but it is part of Obama’s protectionism. Obama refuses to even consider using sugar based ethanol from Brazil defending the need for high import tarrifs on ethanol.

This is one issue where John McCain has taken a stand that does not appease the voters of Iowa and has opposed the ethanol program.

Mr. McCain advocates eliminating the multibillion-dollar annual government subsidies that domestic ethanol has long enjoyed. As a free trade advocate, he also opposes the 54-cent-a-gallon tariff that the United States slaps on imports of ethanol made from sugar cane, which packs more of an energy punch than corn-based ethanol and is cheaper to produce.

“We made a series of mistakes by not adopting a sustainable energy policy, one of which is the subsidies for corn ethanol, which I warned in Iowa were going to destroy the market” and contribute to inflation, Mr. McCain said this month in an interview with a Brazilian newspaper, O Estado de São Paulo. “Besides, it is wrong,” he added, to tax Brazilian-made sugar cane ethanol, “which is much more efficient than corn ethanol.”

The United States should be getting rid of ethanol all together or at least letting in Brazilian sugar based ethanol which is 4 times more efficient.

The price of ethanol has raised the cost of gasoline.

Ethanol also has raised the price of food. Farmers are growing corn for ethanol thus raising the prices of all types of food.

Things Done Changed

Thursday, June 19th, 2008

I think I qualify as an O.G. in this hip-hop blogging thing since I’ve been covering hip-hop on and off since October 2001. Back when I first started blogging it was just me and hip hop anonymous. Times have changed, now the record industry can not deny the influence of hip-hop blogs.

Hip-Hop blogs in 2008 have such great influence that other sites react to them. Here is a video of Kidz in the Hall responding to a poll featured on unkut.com

In the poll Kidz In The Hall were one of eight choices for Who Is The Biggest Hipster Rap Douchebag at unkut.com

Kidz In The Hall should be happy, they came in last place in the poll.

To defend themselves Kidz In The Hall holdup a silk screened t-shirt of Obama. The interview seemed perplexed about how pointing out that a pastel colored t-shirt defends them from the accusations. They also claim they are the first artist to put out a pro-Obama song which may or may not be true.

It’s hard out here for a blogger.

Thursday, June 19th, 2008

There have been limits to American freedom in recent years but Americans remain largely free to blog; whether Americans choose to blog about serious issues or waste time blogging about the the latest Lil Wayne album or who has appeared in the Presidential candidate’s photo ops.

In some countries blogging is a hazardous activity. Since 2003, 64 citizens unaffiliated with news organizations have been arrested for their blogging activities.

Using Google and LexisNexis as search engines, the World Information Access found 64 blogger arrest incidents discussed in various news articles, blogs, scholarly articles and informational Web sites. The WIA organized the incidents by blogger name, country, date of arrest, reason for arrest and time in jail. The majority of incidents took place in the Middle East and Asia with some in North America and Western Europe. The WIA recorded only bloggers who were arrested for using electronic media, which included written online blogs, videos and text messages, to discuss or record political issues and events. The online texts WIA reviewed cited a variety of reasons for the arrests including refusal to give information to the government and violating rules unrelated to state security. Incidents involving pornography or sexual abuse were avoided with the exception of a few select incidents.

More date on the World Information Access report can be found at this link.

Link via A Stitch in Haste

Barr Not Just Running for McCain Voters

Thursday, June 19th, 2008

The Washington Post has a video of an interview where Eric Pianin interviews Bob Barr about the election.

One of the things I liked about this interview was that Barr brought up Obama making it specifically clear he is not just going after John McCain’s voters. Barr should repeat to the anti-war Clinton voters that there is an anti-candidate running other than Obama.

Barr also brought up the point that McCain’s proposed assault on earmarks is not enough to fix the budget process. In many cases, earmarks just redirect funds that would otherwise be appropriated. Control of earmarks is a start but is not enough to get control of the increased rates of spending.


Bush Considers Idea of Off-Shore Drilling

Wednesday, June 18th, 2008

President Bush has decided to come out in favor of allowing states to participate in off-shore drilling. Bush is pushing a good policy proposal here. It is too bad Bush never did this earlier in his administration.

offshore oil, come on bubble and boil

Tuesday, June 17th, 2008

Senator John McCain has proposed ending the federal ban on offshore drilling. This measure would then allow coastal states to decide whether or not to allow drilling for oil offshore. Offshore drilling has not been allowed since 1981.

John McCain told a conference cal
l:

Asked about the offshore drilling, McCain responded, “Right now there’s a moratorium, and they have to be lifted. I’m not dictating to the states that they drill for oil. I’m saying the moratorium should be lifted so states can choose that option if they want to.” He added that the situation might require “additional incentives… in terms of tangible financial rewards” to states that permit drilling. He said he didn’t have a particular position at this point on an appropriate distance from the coast for offshore drilling.

Oil prices are due almost entirely to supply and demand. One sure way to lower the price of oil would be to increase the supply through measures such as offshore drilling. At the very least decisions on whether or not to drill should be made by the states that will be most directly affected by offshore drilling.

This is a positive policy proposal by Senator McCain.

McCain Not Old Enought To Remember The Dred Scott Case

Monday, June 16th, 2008

McCain may be old enough to remember Pearl Harbor but he isn’t old enough to remember the Supreme Court’s Dred Scott decision. How else do you explain the fact that McCain compared yesterday’s court ruling as one of the worst Supreme Court ruling?

The ruling required that terrorism suspects be charged with a crime.

There are many worse Supreme Court ruling I could think of off the top of my head. Dred Scott vs, Sandford declared that black people have no legal standing and are no different than a chair in the eyes of the law; this decision partly led to the Civil War. Korematsu v. United States declared that holding American citizens in prison camps is okay as long as the public feels they have a legitimate reasoning for their racist beliefs. People such as John McCain, who say they want to overturn Roe v. Wade should take that case into consideration. John McCain should realizes there are many historical instances of bad Supreme Court decision. Giving terrorists the right not to be locked up forever without at least being tried is nowhere near the level of bad Supreme Court decision.

The Supreme Court made the right decision. One measure of a free state is whether or not people can arbitrarily be arrested by the government with no means of challenging the government’s say.

Fox News Does Some Good For Once

Saturday, June 14th, 2008

Fox News has some sort of a political bias that can be summed up as pro-Republican Party, pro-war, anti-Muslim. It is almost amusing the ability of some of the anchors to deviate from the norm.

However, Fox News has done a good job lately by airing an hour long special on earmarks, wasteful spending and Congress.

The contents of the hour long special are below:

Impeach Bush Now!

Saturday, June 14th, 2008

Rep. Dennis Kucinich has led the charge of impeachement against Bush.

Kucinich has pushed the House of Representatives to vote on sending articles of impeachment to be taken up by the judiciary. Kucinich had previously attempted to raise the issue several times for impeaching both President Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney.

I support the impeachment of George W. Bush for no other reason than it will be a waste of time and will not cost that much money compared to the other actions that Congress would be taking. Unfortunately, it does not look like the motion will be taken up by the Judiciary Committee since John Conyers realizes it is a waste of time.

Snoop Goes Country

Saturday, June 14th, 2008

It takes a lot of guts for a rapper to go in as many musical directions as Snoop has recently. Snoop had sensual seduction written for him and made the video for it in which Snoop tries to appear as an 80′s funk video one would expect from the likes of Prince.

Snoop has taken it one degree further. Snoop has gone country with the video for his new song My Medicine which features references to Grand Ole Opry, a cameo by Willie Nelson and starts with a shout out to Johnny Cash “a real American gangster.” Snoop going country shouldn’t be too surprising since the South has been running things but country seems like the new frontier for rap music.

My Medicine isn’t a bad song though. It’s a fun Snoop song what else would you expect.