FOR VETERANS DAY: THE SOLDIER, THE CITIZEN, AND THE SIN OF PRIDE

churchill's empireI am in the process of reading a book about Sir Winston Churchill. For the most part, what I know about Churchill relates to his role as the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom during World War II. Churchill’s Empire by Richard Toye focuses on focuses on Churchill’s beliefs and his role with respect to British imperialism (see herehere and here for reviews).

I doubt most Americans give the matter much thought now, but at one time the British Empire was huge.

By 1922 the British Empire held sway over about 458 million people, one-fifth of the world’s population at the time. The empire covered more than 33,700,000 km2 (13,012,000 sq mi), almost a quarter of the Earth’s total land area. As a result, its political,legal, linguistic and cultural legacy is widespread. At the peak of its power, the phrase “the empire on which the sun never sets” was often used to describe the British Empire, because its expanse around the globe meant that the sun was always shining on at least one of its territories. (from here)

We sometimes forget that even after United States escaped British domination during the American Revolution the British acquired many other colonies. These colonies did not escape British rule until the middle of the last century. Hence, the British ruled an empire for centuries, and Churchill served this empire as a journalist, a soldier, and a statesman.

Churchill served the British Empire proudly, but his conscience did sometimes trouble him. One such time followed the “Battle of Omdurman” (see here, here, and here). Churchill was present at the battle, and he charged into the thick of combat with the 21st Lancers, a charge immortalized in poetry, The Battle of Omdurman.

That battle took place in the Sudan on September 2, 1898. It pitted well-armed, well- trained, and ably led British soldiery against a brave, but foolish tribal people.  With every intention of slaughtering the British, Muslim tribesmen launched suicidal frontal assaults against the British force, and with mechanical efficiency, the British slaughtered them.

In his book, Toye reports that experience wore on Churchill’s conscience. To underscore that point, Toye quoted a passage from one of Churchill’s books, The River War. Here is that passage in context.

What enterprise that an enlightened community may attempt is more noble and more profitable than the reclamation from barbarism of fertile regions and large populations? To give peace to warring tribes, to administer justice where all was violence, to strike the chains off the slave, to draw the richness from the soil, to plant the earliest seeds of commerce and learning, to increase in whole peoples their capacities for pleasure and diminish their chances of pain–what more beautiful ideal or more valuable reward can inspire human effort? The act is virtuous, the exercise invigorating, and the result often extremely profitable. Yet as the mind turns from the wonderful cloudland of aspiration to the ugly scaffolding of attempt and achievement, a succession of opposite ideas arises. Industrious races are displayed stinted and starved for the sake of an expensive Imperialism which they can only enjoy if they are well fed. Wild peoples, ignorant of their barbarism, callous of suffering, careless of life but tenacious of liberty, are seen to resist with fury the philanthropic invaders, and to perish in thousands before they are convinced of their mistake. The inevitable gap between conquest and dominion becomes filled with the figures of the greedy trader, the inopportune missionary, the ambitious soldier, and the lying speculator, who disquiet the minds of the conquered and excite the sordid appetites of the conquerors. And as the eye of thought rests on these sinister features, it hardly seems possible for us to believe that any fair prospect is approached by so foul a path. (from here)

Philanthropic invaders? The demands of pride can be harsh. We wish to see ourselves as good, strong, and powerful, and we insist others see us the same way, but the dead, the dying, and the maimed accuse us. And so Churchill struggled to justify the blood price of empire.

When the United Kingdom forged their empire, that people wandered, like straying sheep, from the wisdom of the Bible. Instead of treating the people they met in distant lands as potential Christian converts, they subjugated them. That’s a fact many of the conquered remember bitterly to this day. Even our president, Barack Hussein Obama, has been accused of harboring grudges against British imperialism.  Hence, when the White House returned a bust of Winston Churchill to Britain, the suspicion arose that Obama despises Churchill. Almost hilariously, the White House could not get its story straight (see here). At first they denied returning the bust, but they had done so (see here and here).

Should we despise Churchill? Or should, as others suggest, Churchill’s life serve as an example for our own? The Bible tells us not to judge each other. Instead, we should follow the example of Christ, and we should strive to be good examples for each other.

So did Churchill provide a good example for us? For the most part, I think we can say he did, but his own words tell us he was too proud of the British Empire. Churchill paid lip service to the future equality of other races. Only reluctantly and ambivalently did he concede the injustice of British rule.

Yet imagine the irony. The Empire of Great Britain spanned the globe. That empire declared the supremacy of a white and Christian kingdom. Suddenly, that self-styled benevolent empire of white men found itself in a death struggle with white men even more blatantly racist than themselves. What were the British people to think? How could they now explain their behavior? And so, following the end of World War II, the British Empire quietly dissolved.

Are we so different from the British, the Victorians of Churchill’s era? No. In every age of men, some men find an excuse to dominate and lord over others. We too do what the British imperialists did. We too wish to serve as overlords. We too wish to believe we rule for the benefit of those we dominate. How? Instead of Imperialism, in our era, our time and place, we find our excuses in the doctrines of Socialism. Instead of lording over distant dark-skinned peoples, we impose our needs, our desires, and our values upon neighbors.

Like Churchill, until we see the dead and dying, we can too easily grow accustomed to the benefits of government power.  When government seems to serve our needs, what could be wrong with it? That is what our rogue president and the Democratic Party has shown us in recent years. Here are just a few examples, but there are so many others this post could be about nothing else.

Yet imagine the irony. Don’t Liberals hate the use of abusive power against minorities? Don’t they loudly proclaim how much they detest the policies that led to colonization? Then why is it they have no trouble with majoritarian tyranny, using government power to force others to do what they don’t want to do just because they (“the majority”) think they ought to do it? Are all the victims of Liberals just angry, bigoted white men who deserved to be screwed?

Whether we conquer our barbarous neighbors with ballots or barbarous peoples in distant lands with bullets, the problem of tyranny remains the same. To get people to do what they don’t want to do, we must threaten and use extravagant force or they will not submit to our will.

As citizens, when we send our soldiers into combat or ask our policemen to enforce our laws, we must set aside our pride. We must remember that just because we can that does not give us the right to use force to impose our needs, our desires, and our values either upon neighbors or peoples in distant lands. When we send our soldiers into combat or our policemen to enforce our laws, we don’t want the people who fight for us to struggle in the aftermath, wondering why they had to kill, maim, or lock up the people they had to fight.

When we send our soldiers to war or ask policemen to enforce our laws, we must never forget there is only one proper justification for government.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. —That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, –That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. (from here)

 

 

59 thoughts on “FOR VETERANS DAY: THE SOLDIER, THE CITIZEN, AND THE SIN OF PRIDE

  1. I don’t think that Churchill was being prideful with “philanthropic invaders” as much as wry. The use of the term “invaders” is not calculated to produce a sanguine effect, though the invaders themselves literally did.

    But speaking of veterans and the sin of pride, I have fallen into that trap. The second word of my poem posted today is “proud.”:
    http://www.dehavelle.com/2014/11/thank-you-veterans/

    Happy Veterans Day and best wishes.

    ===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle

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    1. Churchill is one of great men of the 20th Century, and I readily call myself one of his admirers. I do so knowing there is little doubt he supported the expansion of the British Empire, and he defended the barbaric sort of warfare necessary to make it happen.

      Churchill quite deliberately weighed the cost of “philanthropic invasions” by the British against the brigandry of the local rulers, and he came down on the side of the British form brigandry, British imperialism. To his credit, Churchill feelings about the matter were not sanguine, but he did mean to inspire the pride of the Brits in their Empire.

      Churchill believed the British Empire the lesser of evils, and I suppose there is no simple or easy way to argue he was wrong. However, imperialism requires a Machiavellian approach to government that must in the end corrupt even those with the best of intentions (see https://citizentom.com/2009/07/15/philosophical-confusion-over-ends-and-means/). Hence we have that idiom concerning the unexpected nature of the pavement on the road to Hell.

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  2. “As citizens, when we send our soldiers into combat or ask our policemen to enforce our laws, we must set aside our pride. We must remember that just because we can that does not give us the right to use force to impose our needs, our desires, and our values either upon neighbors or peoples in distant lands. When we send our soldiers into combat or our policemen to enforce our laws, we don’t want the people who fight for us to struggle in the aftermath, wondering why they had to kill, maim, or lock up the people they had to fight……………..”h

    Maybe you can explain your thoughts why we as a nation are now fightng in the Middle East. You will know what I believe our main interests may be when I tell you this story.

    When my son asked me to sign for him when he was seventeen to join the marines, I told him no and explained I will rather ride my bike ten miles a day to work than to agree to risk his life over a a barrel of oil. That was just before the first Bush sent US troops to the Middle East.

    What do you think is the real interests of the US as to the reason we are policing the Middle East?.

    Regards and good will blogging.

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      1. To answer your question, we need to work backward in time.

        The US got involved in Afghanistan to revenge the 9/11 attack by Osama.

        Osama got involved in Afghanistan to revenge US political involvement in Saudi Arabia and the Middle East.

        Read the Churchill book of Citizen Tom and you will understand how England got involved in the Middle East politics first, then later the US.

        Oil is the main driver of US involvement in the Middle East.

        Until we change our foreign policy, the US will always be hated by one side of any two sided political conflict for becoming involved in their politics.

        The only country that does not get involved in other countries politics is Switzerland. Maybe we should learn something from their example.

        Regards and good will blogging.

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        1. “Osama got involved in Afghanistan to revenge US political involvement in Saudi Arabia and the Middle East.”

          I don’t imagine you intentionally left out two letters of “USSR.” Carter set up our covert involvement there when the Soviets moved in, and orchestrated Saudi Arabia and other Middle Eastern countries to send their jihadist hotheads (and their money) to Afghanistan. One of those was a young Usama bin Ladin, eager to prove his worth as a warrior against the Soviet Union. But he hated the US as well.

          Usama bin Ladin was instructed in college by one of his professors, Muhammad Qutb, to hate America and everything it stood for, because of its “decadence and depravity” and the fact that a Constitutional republic goes completely against Shariah law. Muhammad Qutb happened to be the brother of Sayyid Qutb, the major proponent of this philosophy in the Muslim Brotherhood, who developed and refined his hatred for the US during his education there. Sort of a Malik Hassan who was also a prolific writer. Qutb has been for many decades the guiding spirit of the Muslim Brotherhood.

          These things are independent of the US paying the Saudis billions of dollars in oil revenue, though there is a connection because the hated Saudi royal family makes their fortune from this. And it is independent of US firms paying hundreds of millions to major Saudi firms, such as the bin Ladin construction company that Usama (as child #17) derived his wealth from.

          But jihadists hated the US and sought to destroy it before we even knew there was oil in the Middle East. And the Muslim Brotherhood — the Ikhwan — has been a jihadist progenitor for more than a century.

          The Saudis thought to control and encourage the Ikhwan, using them as a tool to spread Wahhabi/Salafist doctrines. Some Saudis still do, but that number has been vastly reduced. Many years back, the Saudis wound up kicking Ikhwan out of Saudi Arabia to their current home base in Egypt. And from there, the Ikhwan has engendered and spun off jihadist organizations around the world from ISIS to al Qaida to Hamas to Hexbollah to CAIR and MSA in the United States, plus countless madrassas from the Philippines to Virginia.

          If we departed from the Middle East next week, the Ikhwan-fomented jihadists would still seek to destroy us. Our involvement there has little to do with that.

          But the hypothesis of “it’s all for oil” runs into trouble when you examine the execution. If we went into Iraq for oil, you’d think we’d have gotten their oil. We did not. It does not seem reasonable to me to believe that they just sort of forgot what Ron Paul seems to believe was their primary mission.

          Oh, and the jihadists hate the Swedes as well, and are in the process of taking over that country along with the rest of Europe (including moving almost an eighth of a million Muslims into Sweden each year) as a sort of cold-war branch of the Jihadist War we are now engaged in. Now, to be fair, we haven’t heard of significant jihadist activity in Sweden … for almost two weeks

          ===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle

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        2. Hah! Switzerland, not Sweden! Here’s one news page for that neutral country that is also a target for jihadist takeover.

          They do have one thing going for them: Armed citizens. But the US does too, and it has not kept politically correct multiculturalism from disarming us philosophically in preparation for doing so physically. This is a major tool for the jihadists, who hold sway with the current US administration — and to a certain extent the previous one as well. And it is a major factor for them in Europe.

          ===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle

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        3. Scatterwisdom wrote:

          The only country that does not get involved in other [countries’] politics is Switzerland.

          I am not so certain of this. While Switzerland only became a full member country of the UN this century, they’ve been participating in sanctions, embargoes and asset freezes against Middle Eastern countries for more than a third of a century. Here’s a snippet:

          The Swiss government on June 25, 2003, eased most of the sanctions against the Republic of Iraq in accord with UN Security Council Resolution (UNSCR) 1483. The government lifted the trade embargo, flight restrictions, and financial sanctions in place since August 1990. The weapons embargo and the asset freeze, the scope of which was extended, remain in force, and restrictions on the trade in Iraqi cultural goods were newly imposed. Though not a member at the time, Switzerland had joined UN sanctions against Iraq after the invasion of Kuwait.

          Switzerland also has joined UN economic sanctions imposed on Libya, Sierra Leone, UNITA (Angola), Liberia, and Serbia/Montenegro. On October 15, 2003, the Federal Council ended the import restrictions on raw diamonds from Sierra Leone and lifted sanctions against Libya.

          Switzerland in October 2000 implemented an ordinance to enforce UN sanctions against the Taliban (UNSCR 1267), which it subsequently amended in April 2001 in accord with tighter UN regulations (UNSCR 1333). On May 2, 2002, the Swiss Government eased the sanctions regime in accord with UNSCR 1388 and 1390, lifting the ban on the sale of acetic acid (used in drug production), Afghan airlines, and Afghan diplomatic representations. The weapons embargo, travel restrictions, and financial sanctions remain in force.

          The Swiss Government in November 2001 issued an ordinance declaring illegal the terrorist organisation Al-Qaida as well as possible successor or supporting organisations. More than 200 individuals or companies linked to international terrorism have been blacklisted to have their assets frozen. Thus far, Swiss authorities have blocked about 72 accounts totalling U.S.$22.6 million.

          So: Economic attacks by Switzerland against jihadist groups and entire countries in the Middle East … I would say that this counts as “involved,” and more than one of the affected countries and groups has explicitly decried these as “acts of war.” Also, I encourage you to Google[Switzerland minaret] to see their relationship with Muslims as a whole. Hardly neutral.

          At one point Switzerland even chaired the Organization for Security Cooperation in Europe (though it is not part of the EU), and currently still has a small number of troops stationed with other UN “peacekeeping” forces. Hopefully, these aren’t the rapists and child molesters that the UN blue-helmets are famous for.

          Ah, but the Muslim rapists and child-molesters in England are now a protected species. A pity that the poor children are not.

          ===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle

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  3. “But the hypothesis of “it’s all for oil” runs into trouble when you examine the execution. If we went into Iraq for oil, you’d think we’d have gotten their oil. We did not. It does not seem reasonable to me to believe that they just sort of forgot what Ron Paul seems to believe was their primary mission.
    But the hypothesis of “it’s all for oil” runs into trouble when you examine the execution. If we went into Iraq for oil, you’d think we’d have gotten their oil. We did not. It does not seem reasonable to me to believe that they just sort of forgot what Ron Paul seems to believe was their primary mission.”
    I seem to remember a statement in the news when we invaded Iraq that we would be reimbursed our military costs from their oil revenue.
    Why they presently have a Government surplus in revenues and we have a Government deficit is beyond my comprehension.
    When the Roman’s sent their troops to quell a uprising or disturbance in their empire, they made the nation pay the costs for sending in their troops.
    We just borrow the money and in time pay back triple the costs when interest accrues. Maybe we should rethink our involvement in terms of costs? Better yet, impose war taxes on voters and watch how fast we stop becoming involved in other nation’s conflicts by our military.
    Thanks for your thoughtful reply about the other reasons we are hated by jihadists. I wonder if all the immigration policies of the countries you mentioned are foolish in light of your information.
    Regards and good will blogging.

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    1. After I posted this post, it occurred to me that someone would probably bring up the oil/Middle East complaint. What I said does seem invite that line of argument. Fortunately, I think Keith makes a good case for the fact that what is going on in the Middle East has far more to do with ideology than it does oil.

      Because we have a secular state and a secularized educational system, we tend not to take very seriously a simple idea. What people believe makes a difference. Instead, we put everything in economic terms. In this case, we think oil, but the the folks in the Middle East don’t seem to be satisfied with wealth. Muslims want to spread Islam. Russians want power. And so forth.

      So what role does oil play?

      1. Because of thoroughly idiotic economic policies, we have allowed ourselves to become dependent upon Middle East oil. One reason is simple economics. The oil in the Middle East is cheap and of high quality. So we like using it, and the American companies who sell it, and the Saudis weld considerable influence. Further, because the don’t want the nuisance, the NIMBY (not in my backyard) crowd complains bitterly whenever we try to develop alternative energy sources. Hence, we we see too much politics and little real action. Nevertheless, we have to have energy to grow our food, operate our industries, carry our goods, drive our cars, and so forth. It is a life or death matter. Access to energy is national vital interest. Therefore, without US energy sources, we must buy oil from overseas, and that makes Middle East oil important to us, like it or not.

      2. The oil in the Middle East provides the people who control it geopolitical power. They can use oil wealth build military forces, and they can threaten those who depend on their oil with an oil famine. Therefore, ensuring that ownership the oil in the Middle is not concentrated in the hands of a just a few people is also a vital national interest.

      One other thing. Our leaders did not attempt to take control of the oil fields in the Middle East. Yet we obviously have the capacity to do so. Why? Whatever else is wrong with the United States, we still don’t greedily rape and pillage other nations. Therefore, we did not go to war in the Middle East just for the oil. We sent our troops to the Middle East to protect vital national interests.

      Thanks for the comment and the opportunity to present an alternative view.

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      1. I understand the economics of oil. The problem with economics of oil is how we as a Christian nation have allowed ourselves to become so dependent and wasteful of this resource that our entire economy will collapse without it. Meanwhile, the Amish will go on living and surviving with their Christian values same as they do now.

        Just a thought I have whenever I read the phrase “national interests”

        Regards and good willl blogging.

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        1. The people we have in charge of society pursue their own self-interests, not the good of the People. Unfortunately, that happens because too many of us vote for our own self-interests instead of the good of our neighbors. So I suppose we are just getting what we get what we deserve. And one of those things is an oil-based economy that depends too much on foreign oil.

          You understand the economics of oil? I doubt I have a good understanding of it, but maybe you do. However, that remark about the Amish suggest some kind of misunderstanding of economics.

          We live in a society that depends upon cheap energy. We live in such a society because it vastly increases our standard of living. With cheap energy, we are far more productive, and we can do things and produce things that would otherwise not be possible.

          The fact the Amish participate in our economy also increases their standard of living. The Amish and other old order religious groups may isolate their communities from many aspects of American society. Nevertheless, these people sell their products and buy some of the things they use from other Americans, and if they could not do so they would be much poorer.

          Even those the Amish and those other old order religious groups live what appears to be a quaint existence, they still live in 21st century America. They don’t starve when the harvest is poor, and they don’t have to pay and arm and leg for metal tools. In a pinch, some even make use of modern medicine. What they strive to eschew are the temptations of our culture and those things that tear modern families apart. And for that, I cannot say I blame them.

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        2. When I used Amish as an example, it was because they are not wasteful in their lifestyle like the typical US oil and energy consumer,

          For example, big cars, trucks, SUV all with only one passenger. Thousands of Semi Trucks driving cross country instead of rail, 6000 sq. ft. houses being lived in by only two people.

          All examples of wasteful use of oil and gas, the most versatile energy sources being burned up that will be depleted in time.

          I won’t bloviate any more about US involvement in other countries politics to appease our selfish lifestyles. In my opinion, we are also not very wise in our world police roles for “national interests.” I describe our role as the name of a game I used to play as a kid. “monkeys in the middle:”

          When future generations read history books about our generation, they will neither like nor respect us for depleting earth’s resources of oil and gas without regard for future generations.

          Regard and good will blogging.

          PS I drive a big car only because I am afraid to drive a small car down the highway with all the big cars and trucks zooming around me. When a big car hits a small car, the small car always loses. I only have one life and value it. My point is our consumer oriented society drives many other wasteful choices to grow and perpetuate.

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        3. When future generations read about us, if they are any wiser, it might be because they have learned a little humility. But that’s not likely.

          1. We live only about 80 years.
          2. Even if we had the mental capacity, that’s not much time to gain the experience needed to understand how a complex civilization composed of over seven billion humans should function.
          3. Every year we produce various new technologies. We can only guess what their environmental and social implications might be.
          4. We are born to be greedy, lazy, lustful, full of pride and sinful drives.

          If they are many future generations to come, it will be because of God’s grace and mercy. Fortunately, God is full of grace and mercy.
          🙂

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        4. 3. Every year we produce various new technologies. We can only guess what their environmental and social implications might be.
          .
          This to me does not seem to be very wise. In ancient times, a wise king set aside grain to plan for times of famine.

          We are guessing we will find a way to replace oil and gas for future generations?.

          Yes indeed, according to the laws of physics, we are going to need God’s grace and mercy when we deplete our natural resources. Amen, .

          Regards and good will blogging.

          Regards and good will blogging

          .

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        5. Scatterwisdom wrote:

          Every year we produce various new technologies. We can only guess what their environmental and social implications might be. This to me does not seem to be very wise.

          We should be suspicious, perhaps, because the undeniable track record of our new technologies in the past has been to feed billions and to lift billions of people out of abject misery and poverty, as well as tremendously reduce the number of persons killed by war.

          This number has declined dramatically after peaking just before the atomic bombing of Japan. It’s been down ever since. Of course, socialist totalitarians in various flavors have killed another hundred-million-plus civilians in peacetime. As is common practice for such “progressives,” these murders are by their own governments. But by now the only people surprised at this are … the next crop of socialists, or their victims.

          Scatterwisdom wrote:

          In ancient times, a wise king set aside grain to plan for times of famine.

          And his people lived in backbreaking labor, poverty, and misery compared to our technological society.

          According to US media, we already have a “wise king”; they’ve used both words repeatedly to describe our Marxist-mentored mendacious manipulator. I hope that we survive this as a free nation.

          Scatterwisdom wrote:

          We are guessing we will find a way to replace oil and gas for future generations? Yes indeed, according to the laws of physics, we are going to need God’s grace and mercy when we deplete our natural resources. Amen.

          No guesses need to be made here. While we have enough fossil fuel for hundreds of years (at least) at present rates, our rapidly increasing technology will eventually make other energy sources cheaper.

          Solar power satellites are an obvious choice: Unlimited, scalable, power anywhere you want it, zero pollution, and space solar power is a natural resource good for another billion years at least. But Obama’s forcing of taxpayer dollars to be directed to his fundraising cronies poisons the free market, and hampers private enterprise’s development of economically viable alternatives.

          In addition to being zero-pollution, space solar power is also zero-CO2-emissions. That’s a problem, but by then we will have figured out other ways to pump this life-giving substance into the atmosphere to keep the world fed.

          We’ve only recently been able to overtake the draining of CO2 by plants (and they still use more CO2 than we can produce five months out of the year). Plants are now enjoying a tiny bit more of the 20,000 PPM of CO2 that they evolved to use. They’d been suffocating themselves, but now the extra CO2-fertilized crop production is feeding a billion people, through our technology’s use of CO2-emitting fuel combustion.

          CO2 has a minor positive effect on temperature, and that in turn has reduced the number of hurricanes and tornadoes and fires and such as well as helping crop growth. But this won’t be enough, as we’re seeing now, to counter the Sun’s reduced output.

          ===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle

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        6. I left the following comment at: http://rudymartinka.wordpress.com/2014/11/14/king-solomon-on-the-economics-of-oil/

          Thank you for the link and an interesting post.

          Keith DeHavelle makes some interesting points on this subject in his comment here, https://citizentom.com/2014/11/11/for-veterans-day-the-soldier-the-citizen-and-the-sin-of-pride/#comment-55987. I cannot say I entirely agree with him, but that is because I “I don’t know” correctly states my position. Nevertheless, Keith makes a strong case; he should be taken seriously.

          Will we eventually run out of fossil fuels? Given current trends, the answer is yes. However, I have no idea how long current trends will persist.

          Consider this example. We very nearly exterminated whales. Then people started using kerosene instead of whale oil. With respect to fossil fuels, something very similar may happen. As Keith observed in his comment:

          Solar power satellites are an obvious choice: Unlimited, scalable, power anywhere you want it, zero pollution, and space solar power is a natural resource good for another billion years at least.

          Then again, solar power satellites may be too costly, or we may not be able to find a safe and efficient way to transmit power from the satellites to the ground. I don’t know. What I do know is that putting the government in charge of the research will not help. I worked at NASA for four years, and I have never seen such a waste of smart people and good money in all my life. Working there helped to make a Conservative out of me.

          Consider the story of Joseph in the Genesis. After the Joseph explained the Pharaoh’s dreams — related them to a seven-year famine that would start after seven good harvests — the Pharaoh put Joseph in charge of preparing for the famine.

          When happened during the famine? At first the Egyptians bought the grain they needed from the Pharaoh. So the Pharaoh ended up owning everything his people had. Then, when they ran out of money, the Egyptians sold themselves to the Pharaoh. Thus, the Pharaoh owned his people, and he fed his property.

          Grateful to be alive, and revering their Pharaoh, the Egyptians accepted their reduction in status gracefully. Nevertheless, this little bit of history illustrates what we can expect whenever we put the government in charge of anything. Government programs best serve the best connected.

          The problem with government-run research is that it tends to divert a lot of money to the well-connected, and not much research actually gets done. We get a big bureaucracy and a good sideshow, but most of the money is wasted.

          You want people to use less fossil fuels? We already tax the dickens out of fossil fuels, and those taxes already discourages us from using fossil fuels. But perhaps further increases may be feasible.

          You want to increase taxes on fossil fuels in exchange for lowering income taxes? That might work. Just be careful our government doesn’t raise taxes so high or so fast people cannot adjust. If we get a black market in fossil fuels, that will make things worst, not better.

          Meanwhile, get government out of the way. Let free enterprise do what it can do better than government. Let inventive people search for alternative energy sources. Let entrepreneurs risk their money and earn profits when people like what they produce. Insist the lawyers who run our government do the job they are supposed to do: protecting our God-given rights.

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        7. More taxes on the backs of the poor to feed a bloated and unelected government bureaucracy? I would think that this wouldn’t even be on your list. Allow time to pass, and the market to determine relative value. It will automatically work itself out. Government distorting the market for their own gain is an odious approach, to me, and a spectacular failure in practice.

          On Space Solar Power: We know how to get the power down: A microwave beam at 2.6GHz or 5.6GHz, spread out to be low intensity, and aimed at a large antenna on the ground. I have had just sucg a beam passed through me to light a bank of incandescents behind me. The antenna would be a metalized net strung on poles; you can grow crops under it, as it would block only about 20% of sunlight. In deserts, this would be an advantage.

          “Costly” is a matter of scale as well as approach; we need to loft only an infrastructure to start building these using Lunar materials launched by electric mass driver. Once we get that far, the process will grow as fast as we can staff it.

          We ran the safety studies back in the 1970s, and I participated in NASA’s “Fresh Look” review of space solar power in the mid 1990s (at Huntsville). Were you there then?

          ===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle

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        8. Note the option on taxes.

          You want to increase taxes on fossil fuels in exchange for lowering income taxes? That might work.

          I was being a little bit sarcastic. The point is that our tax laws already favor alternative energy sources.

          I worked at Johnson Space Center when the Challenger crashed. I was an Air Force officer, and I was there because the Air Force had been directed to use the Shuttle as its primary launch platform. So we were there to learn how to plan and run our missions. Reagan ended that dumb idea after it became clear the crash of the Challenger had NASA tied up in knots.

          I read about space solar power a long time ago. When I finally realized our government will never do anything about it, I stopped giving the matter much thought. Look at the controversy we get over cell phone towers. Can you imagine the public’s reaction to a high-powered space based microwave emitter? Can you imagine politicians like John Boehner and Mitch McConnell leading the charge against the opposition such a system would stir up?

          Is such a system technically feasible? The lawyers running our government don’t even care, unfortunately. Their personal ambitions are what they care about.

          I presume the satellites in a solar power system would be deployed in geosynchronous orbit. What the footprint of the microwave beam would look like when it reached the earth from that far out? This article summarizes the technology: http://www.academia.edu/6417446/SPACE_BASED_SOLAR_POWER_STATIONS_-_An_Energy_Solution_For_Tomorrow

          What we can do with phased array microwave transmitters is really quit amazing, but how do we convince the public that it is safe? What happens if it loses its lock on the rectenna? Would the beam hurt people or damage ground-based electronics? How easily could such a device be converted into a weapon? What happens if there is a big solar storm? Those are all problems of a different sort, and too many politicians are more interested in screwing their constituents than serving them. Therefore, except in a nation like Japan (where there are no fossil fuels), I don’t expect government directed research to accomplish anything useful.

          Like

        9. Some people are deathly afraid of cell towers. Nevertheless, we have huge numbers of them installed. The microwave beam is low-intensity; point it at a city and it will be a while before anyone notices. If it’s a cool day (or night), the mild extra warmth would be appreciated.

          I agree that the problems are political. We know how to do this now, technologically.

          Incidentally, the paper is dated recently but is rather outdated in content. Many orbits are possible, and will be used for different applications — and SPS systems on the Moon and beaming back here are quite feasible. He does not even mention the tiled concept, which greatly simplifies installation and maintenance in space.

          ===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle

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    2. scatterwisdom wrote

      “Why they presently have a Government surplus in revenues and we have a Government deficit is beyond my comprehension.”

      The Iraq War II was relatively tiny in terms of its impact upon the US budget. When you subtract, as you should, the costs that would be borne by the military even in peacetime (such as salaries), this was small potatoes. Even the cost in soldiers’ lives was lower than peacetime under previous administrations, oddly, though our tortured “rules of engagement” were a major factor in most Iraq deaths.

      Years ago, I wrote about the disparity in lives lost:
      Military Deaths — 1980 to 2006

      Hah! The chart seems to be missing. But the comments are still there. ("Level Head" is me; it is an anagram of DeHavelle and intended to represent an ideal that I strive for.)

      As for our expenditures — we have the most expensive thing in the world: a leftist bureaucracy.

      ===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle

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      1. Kieth,, Thanks for your source on jihad in Switzerland. . They appear to be doing what all countries should be doing, and that is using economics instead of bullets to war with jihad.

        As for problems with Muslims if you feed them, they will come. Stop feeding them by buying their goods and services, and deport them instead of jailing them.when they “don’t do in Rome what the Romans do.”.

        Regards and good will blogging.

        Like

        1. Except that what you’ve posited as “what all countries should be doing” is considered by enemy forces in the Middle East as good and adequate reason for those countries to be destroyed or subjugated.

          It is explicitly not the neutrality that Switzerland has acquired a reputation for. I agree with their pursuit of sanctions, but as a model for behavior that keeps the jihadists happy, it obviously fails. Jihadist appeasement always does, as the basic issue is not our actions or lack of actions, it is their ideology. Appeasement assumes a rational interest in (only) their own internal affairs, and a wish (only) not to be disturbed from the outside. But this is not how Islam spread from Mecca and Medina, and not why they conquered nations across Africa, Asia and Europe.

          Egypt is a good example: Islamic forces attacked and conquered them hundreds of years ago, and destroyed or supplanted their institutions, culture and language. Today the only people speaking some version of the original Egyptian language are the Copts. And the Muslim Brotherhood was slaughtering them until Sisi clamped down on them again.

          The Coptic Christians did not wage kinetic or economic war against the jihadists, and merely wanted to be left alone to practice their faith in their small ways. But their very existence is offensive to jihadists, and thus they deserve to be destroyed.

          Exactly the same applies to all of us in the West, and the idea that “if we just left them alone they’d be happy” is undercut by the history of Islam over the last millennium and a half.

          ===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle

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    3. Scatterwisdom wrote:

      Thanks for your thoughtful reply about the other reasons we are hated by jihadists. I wonder if all the immigration policies of the countries you mentioned are foolish in light of your information.

      You’re welcome. And, of course, yes they are. One excellent book on the topic is While Europe Slept by Bruce Bawer, an American who moved to Europe to avoid (he thought) persecution of homosexuals. He has an informative website as well as other books on related topics.

      ===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle

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        1. Do what, exactly? The “persecution” that Bower thought he would experience in the US? It was nothing compared to the rest of the world, and almost non-existent here. Cases like Matthew Shepard, which was never the “gay-bashing” incident that it was portrayed as, are used to stir people up just as Obama maintains the fiction of horrific racism here.

          Christians and Jews get more grief in the West than gays do. A Jew in Europe can be beaten by jihadists right in front of his fellow countrymen, and they’ll just look the other way. It is an everyday occurrence there, and becoming more common in the US as well. With Christians, the hatred developing against them is an institutional one. They are becoming an “officially disfavored” group.

          ===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle

          Like

  4. If you are right, then the world must all join together because the US cannot do it alone. Example, WWII was not won by the US alone. The sooner the world realizes it, the better. Time to leave the Middle East and let the Arabs fight among themselves for awhile. The US is only prolonging the time when everyone becomes involved because they no longer can just be spectators and leave it up to the US to do all the world policing

    By the way, Iraq and Iran never got along too well with each other..Seems to me the US is helping Iran by being involved in the present conflict.

    Regards and good will blogging.

    Like

      1. They will in time have nuclear weapons because they are afraid that they will be invaded or overthrown same as what happened in Ethiopia when they agreed not to build nuclear weapons.

        Like

        1. “They will in time have nuclear weapons because they are afraid that they will be invaded or overthrown…”

          Do you actually believe that this is Iran’s motivation?

          Incidentally, Iran already has an intercontinental nuclear weapon delivery system capable of reaching every seaport city in the US. It’s called a freighter ship.

          By the way, “every seaport city in the US” includes Tulsa, Oklahoma — did you know it was a seaport? It is far enough from Norman, OK (the jihadist capital of the US) where they would not worry about fallout affecting their friends there.

          ===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle

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        2. All right, Libya then. Days after we moved on Iraq in 2003, Qaddafi quietly approached the Brits to say “Can you please tell the US that I’m willing to play nice and please don’t invade me?” Qaddafi then cut a three-party deal to get out of the WMD-making business.

          Are you suggesting that his removal from power a decade later is because he didn’t have nuclear weapons to use on his protesters? He was already in bad shape before the US/UN intervention.

          Incidentally, Iran ALSO dropped their nuclear weapons program shortly after we went into Iraq in 2003. They did not pick it back up again for years, when they saw that the US had lost its resolve and become weakened in foreign policy. This was before Bush left office, and was at the time that rthe Democrats took over both houses of Congress. But you can guess, of course, that the triumphant articles touting the Iran nuclear activities (revealed in a National Intelligence Estimate years later) carefully avoided mentioning the timing. It would make their team look bad.

          ===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle

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        3. Kaddafi lost when the US intervened and used air power to defeat him. We did not get much thanks for helping out though when our embassy was attacked though. And Libya is not doing too well since. I read an opinion that if he had nuclear weapons, the US would not have been too eager to play “”monkey in the middle there. “

          Iraq and the entire Middle East is not much better after Bush. I read another opinion that the one trillion dollars spent in Iraq will wind up costing three trillion when the interest accrues and the vets wounded or killed are taken into account. Bush also allowed more US manufacturing jobs to be outsourced and left office in the middle of an economic meltdown caused from some baloney theory of letting business regulate itself

          Bush in my opinion was the worse President in History.

          However, beauty is in the eyes of the beholder
          .
          Regards and good will blogging

          Like

        4. Wow.

          Are you aware that this “meltdown” was a good strong economy until the Democrats took over in 2007? And that the “meltdown” was from the housing bubble engineered by the Democrats through cronyism with their buddies at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac? (Who took hundreds of millions of dollars out of those entities in bonuses while reassuring folks that a 50-to-1 leverage structure was just fine and nothing to worry about.)

          And that Bush engineered one of the quickest turnarounds in history from the recession during Clinton’s last year? (Look at the charts. The collapse began in April 2000, but was largely hidden or undiscussed by the media to give Gore a chance of winning. NASDAQ lost over half its value by the end of 2000, destroying many peoples’ investments. This was the famous DotCom crash, but the media managed to make it seem like Bush’s fault though this all transpired after Clinton’s last tax increases and before Bush took office.)

          And that losses (US dead and wounded) in Afghanistan have been much higher under Obama than under Bush, largely because of the emasculating Obama rules of engagement?

          And that the 2007 surge in Iraq worked and gave us a victory over the jihadists there, despite all the detractors, but the Democrats demanded that Iraq be left to its own defenses?

          As an aside, the high cost of nuclear power plants is mostly legal costs. The technology is not all that difficult. China is building them at the rate of almost one per month, and inviting IAEA in to inspect them. (This doesn’t impress me much; they’re the same people who gave Iraq the okay just before we went in and then we found they were less than a year from completing a nuclear bomb. Later, they pronounced Iran clear just before it was revealed that their bomb program was well-advanced. So they gave the head guy a Nobel Prize and sent him off to try to run Egypt. The people rejected Muhammad elBaradei, the bribe-taking Mister Magoo of inspectors.)

          ===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle

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        5. “Bush also allowed more US manufacturing jobs to be outsourced”

          I don’t know if you realize this, but making outsourcing against the law is not possible. A business that has too much in costs fails when competing against a business with lower costs.

          The president’s job is, among other things, to encourage a robust economy and business environment that invites people here, not the other way around. Obama has turned the US into a meta-California driving businesses (and jobs) away in droves, and the rate of exodus far exceeds that of the Bush tenure.

          But the outsourcing that took place under Bush was mostly call-center jobs. China did indeed take manufacturing jobs, but primarily from former low-cost manufacturing havens such as Japan and Taiwan and India.

          India is fighting hard to keep these jobs, since it is losing call center jobs to the Philippines. The Philippines recently became the number 1 call-center country in the world, despite having a tenth of India’s population. They’ve created a business-friendly environment, and it is working for half a million employees just in this one segment.

          Outsourcing is not entirely evil, as this report notes. But losing good jobs because the US is no longer competitive is a fact of life, and needs to be addressed by allowing the US to be competitive again, not trying to legislate the economies of China and such.

          Notice the success (including the employee success!) of firms like Toyota and Volkswagen’s US operations, compared to GM and Chrysler.

          ===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle

          Like

      2. When the Bush 2 administration engineered the bailout, W went down greatly in my estimation. However, with their government sponsored lenders like Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the Democrats created and engineered the housing bubble that precipitated the bailout.

        Who is the worst president ever. With the support of the Democrats, Obama is openly trying to gut the Constitution. His executive orders go well past anything Bush did. The Democrats and Obama’s policies have undermined the economy, and they are doing to our military is an abomination.

        Unfortunately, the Republicans won’t fight. So we live in sad times.

        Like

        1. Bush was warned more than once about Freddie Mae and Mac by his own Treasurey Secretary and did nothing.

          As far as which President was the worse betweeen Bush and Obama, I will give you my opinion in two years if I am still around, They appear to be tied though right now.

          Regards and good will blogging.

          Like

        2. “Bush was warned more than once about Freddie Mae and Mac by his own Treasurey Secretary and did nothing.”

          I suspect that you have forgotten that the Bush backed Republican bills to reform Fannie Mae and Freddy Mac, and stave off this overleveraging of assets, were filibustered by Chris Dodd. I have seen various “debunking” pieces written to protect Democrats. They are uncompelling if you are familiar with the mechanics of those markets. But “Bush … did nothing” is simply false-to-fact.

          ===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle

          Like

        3. Here’s an “independent” article that also conveniently forgets about the filibustering of the attempted reforms. But the Barney Frank quotes are telling:

          The issue that day in 2003 was whether mortgage backers Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were fiscally strong. Frank declared with his trademark confidence that they were, accusing critics and regulators of exaggerating threats to Fannie’s and Freddie’s financial integrity. And, the Massachusetts Democrat maintained, “even if there were problems, the federal government doesn’t bail them out.’’

          Now, it’s clear he was wrong on both points — and that his words have become a political liability as he fights a determined challenger to win a 16th term representing the Fourth Congressional District. Fannie and Freddie collapsed in 2008, forcing the federal government to buy $150 billion worth of stock in the enterprises and $1.36 trillion worth of mortgage-backed securities.

          Frank, in his most detailed explanation to date about his actions, said in an interview he missed the warning signs because he was wearing ideological blinders. He said he had worried that Republican lawmakers and the Bush administration were going after Fannie and Freddie for their own ideological reasons and would curtail the lenders’ mission of providing affordable housing.

          “I was late in seeing it, no question,’’ Frank said about the lenders’ descent into insolvency.

          Republican Sean Bielat, who is trying to unseat Frank, has been hammering away at him with a website titled “Retire Barney’’ that features clips of Frank at the 2003 hearing and elsewhere. During debates this week, he called Frank “one of the leaders of the economic disaster’’ because he supported Fannie and Freddie when they were taking the risks that led to their collapse.

          But Frank said that putting blame entirely on him is unfair — and several independent analysts agree. They said Republicans also failed to take warning signs seriously enough to avert disaster, despite controlling the White House and both houses of Congress between 2003 and 2007, a crucial period leading up to the Fannie and Freddie failures.

          (Emphasis added by me.)

          Note that despite the article’s admission, through Frank’s words, that “Republican lawmakers and the Bush administration were going after Fannie and Freddie,” the article still tries to assert that Republicans “failed to take warning signs seriously enough.” This is inconsistent, contradictory, and in fact wrong.

          But the point is, Frank was explaining/excusing his role in the financial disaster, and admitting that he was opposing Republican efforts to head it off. This was not some new-found conscience, or a sudden growth of character: Frank was admitting a minimum in an attempt to get re-elected. A “modified limited hangout” in the Nixonian phrase. Frank knew that Republicans were attempting to head off disaster, and Frank knew why as one of the Congressional stewards of the FMs.

          And speaking of heading off, I must do so. This has been a pleasant distraction, but I have a project I must attend to. I will leave you to the good offices of Citizen Tom.

          Oh, and here is one of many transcripts of Frank covering for the FMs, which (in addition to over-leveraging) had just been found guilty of cooking their books so that their bosses could get gigantic bonuses. It got so bad after a while that even Democrats were distancing themselves. That is bad indeed, as corruption goes.

          What happened to the main guy who took nearly $100 million out of these entities during this fraudulent scheme? Jail? Restitution? No. He became a financial advisor to Barack Obama.

          Good night.

          ===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle

          Like

    1. I don’t agree that it is time to let the Middle East alone so that the jihadists can build strength. That wasn’t your reason, but it is an easily predictable result.

      ===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle

      Like

        1. When you say “no one buys their oil,” don’t forget that the US is not the only market. China is cutting major oil deals, and is currently Iran’s largest customer. They LIKE the idea of jihadists attacking Western interests.

          As a result, the US dollar is rapidly losing cachet as the world currency, and oil is one of the first areas we are losing. Obama’s efforts are bringing this day closer, including the implementation of FATCO last July (which penalizes foreign banks that have US dollar accounts).

          Sometime soon — in a week, or perhaps as much as five years — we will lose that “world currency” status. That day, our debt can no longer be addressed by printing money, quantitative easing, or any other technique, because we would be required to actually own the resources behind it, in Chinese yuan — and our credit will be gone. A massive turnaround is needed now to prevent that day from being the collapse of the US.

          ===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle

          Like

  5. Keith, Tom

    I based my statements on an interview I heard in relation to chemistry and physics. That being that there are no less costly sources of energy on earth than coal, oil, and natural gas t hat are capable to obtain the BTU power presently required and being used to power our economies. I do not remember the source. If he is correct which I personally believe his statements are, we should be implementing all green energy sources to preserve and amortize the costs of energy in time.

    I explained a possible method of cost amoratization in earlier posts with Tom

    Keith, my postings in relation to King Solomon are not to claim that ancient his were better than our present modern world technologies benefits to mankind. The purpose is to try to relate his wisdom to still be relative in our modern world. For example, “nothing is new under the sun” in relation to technology means every new technology is only a new discovery of what God has blessed us with.

    As for human wisdom and foolishness, his writings and philosophy is also still relevent. For example, every new generation in history continues to war. This bears a relation to what he wrote “what will man do after the King is what has been done.”

    Until we wise up, History proves his statements of foolishness will continue and his wisdom still always be relevant..

    I hope both of your statements about future energy will bear out for future generations. Until they are actually discovered though, I believe we should employ every means to amortize energy dources now. Think of it being what wise kings did in the past to plan for famine. Because if the chemist physists statements are accurate, there will be a famine of natural energy sources in the future. Think about how island populations destroyed all the trees on certain islands by using the tress for firewood. Those islands became uninhabitabal in time.

    Regards and good will blogging.T
    .

    Like

    1. scatterwisdom – Don’t we all sometimes make mistakes that upon reflection leave us wondering how we could have done such thing?

      Consider again the relative cost of different energy sources. Then imagine lighting your house with whale oil. What if your grandchild asked why you use whale oil? Isn’t that mean to the whales? Well, of course it is, but you can’t find anything less expensive, and you refuse to live in the dark. So with twinges of guilt you and your neighbors continue to use whale oil, and whales start to get scarce. Fortunately, a few years latter you are using kerosene, which is much less expensive and far nicer to whales.

      Because we don’t use whale oil to light our homes, are we now better people? No, but though the grace of God economics and human inventiveness have come to our rescue.

      Will through the grace of God economics and human inventiveness come to our rescue again? We have options worth investigating and testing, but we do a vile job of selecting our leaders. They are so hungry for power they actually get in the way.

      At what point could we have anticipated the switch to kerosene? When Socrates admitted that he was wise because he knew he was ignorant, I think that was a good lesson for all of us. Unfortunately, such wisdom is too rare. So we presume to tell each other how to run our lives.

      Far too many of us spend to much time trying to force our needs, desires, values, and “wisdom” upon our unwilling neighbors. That’s what leads to endless wars, and that also prevents us from receiving the grace of God. When we busy our hands grasping and clutching what rightly belong to someone else, we cannot open them to receive God’s grace.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. The problem of government in relation to energy is management in my opinion. Because private industry is forced by competetion to use the cheapest sources of energy, there will be a future problem when present US natural sources of energy are depleted. Management is supposed to look out for the future as well as the present.

        The future of US in regards to management of resources is not looking too bright in my opinion.

        When righteous men are in power, people rejoice……………….. There will not be a lot of people rejoicing when the lights go out and they have no jobs.

        Of couse, I can not force anyone to read or agree with the wisdom of my opinions. I can only try to express my concerns that the present ecconomic supply and demand theory may not be the best way to manage future energy needs anymore. Kinda like whale oil was replaced by kerosene was replaced in time. ..

        Regards and good will blogging..

        Like

        1. scatterwisdom wrote:

          The problem of government in relation to energy is management in my opinion. Because private industry is forced by competetion to use the cheapest sources of energy, there will be a future problem when present US natural sources of energy are depleted.

          Indeed. The free market is the best management of markets ever devised, and government intervention is the worst.

          Consider: In a free market, coal and oil and gas would be much cheaper. This would be a boon to civilizations all around the world, and will dramatically reduce money going to jihadist-sponsoring countries—a double win. Over the next few hundred years, coal and oil and natural gas in the free market would tend to get gradually more expensive, at different rates, based on different supplies and different demand. But somewhere along the way, other technologies will produce something better yet, and then the market will re-orient itself to this new supply and demand. But if NOTHING comes along in all that time, if the dozen different alternative energy sources now being worked on never become economical, then gradually rising prices will make space solar power competitive. Problem (if you see it as one) solved either way.

          This is the path of maximum liberty. It is the path of the highest quality of life. It is the path we should choose.

          ===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle

          Like

    2. Your “chemist physicists” statements ARE inaccurate. How did he uninvent nuclear power, for example? Or did he just forget?

      We don’t need to “discover” future energy sources; they are already there and well-known, and will come into play as the free market demands them. We have a crisis of government bureaucracy, not a crisis of natural resources.

      Incidentally, trees and plants are growing like crazy now. We have far more forest in the US now than when this country was founded, for example. We need to allow third world countries access to cheap fossil fuels, so that they have less incentive to burn their own rainforests (and die miserably from the fumes of dung burned indoors for cooking, a major cause of death there currently).

      ===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle

      Like

      1. Kieth,
        I agree with you on nuclear energy which is currently the lowest cost of energy. I just forgot about it. The problem is the high cost to build safe nuclear power plants today.

        As for China buying Iran oil, nothing we can do about that except to stop buying any product from them that exceed he amounts they buy from us. They currently enjoy a favorable trade imbalance of close to 1/2 trillion dollars every year that they export to the US. If other countries did the same, they may change their foreign polcies and join in with thier biggest customers. Iran is small potatoes as a ccustomer compared to their Western customers

        As far as the US dollar no longer being used, I say it will be great for US employment. The dollars will come back to the US economy when they can only use the dollars to buy US products because other countries will stop useing the dollar to buy other countriy products and investments. The US is in the best position than any other country to be self sufficient if no other country wants to trade with us. We are the biggest consumers in the world. What we buy from trade partners can be made here.

        As for your opinion that there is a sufficient supply for the next 500 years of coal, oil, and natural gas, I hope you are right for the sake of my grandkids

        As for free markets being the best and most efficient, beauty is in the eyes of the beholder. I see where it is best for speculators and the super rich more than the average Joes..

        Regards and good will blogging.

        Like

  6. All our heroes are flawed! It does not diminish their achievements only enlightens our understanding. I thank you for enlightenment!

    Like

    1. That’s a good way to put it.

      Some people tend to deify great men, and they cannot stand to hear anything bad said about them. That’s actually unChristian. Look what the Bible says about the apostles.

      Because He was God, only Jesus led a perfect life. That’s one of the things He did that shows us He is God. To expect such perfection from anyone else is to make an idol of them and set them up as a god.

      What we learn from our heroes is how they persevere when they fall. When we make a mistake — when we fall — we don’t give up trying to do what is right. We confess our sins to God, beg for forgiveness, pick ourselves up, and we resume our Christian walk.

      That said, I don’t honestly know whether Churchill was a Christian or not. He was a politician.

      Liked by 1 person

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