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Posts Tagged ‘texas’

‘Unintended Consequences and The Texas ‘Big Freeze’ Energy Disaster’ – Ron Paul’s 22 Feb. Column

Posted by M. C. on February 23, 2021

But Texas did not only freeze because of Abbott’s Covid restrictions. For the better part of a year thousands of businesses have been destroyed. Recovering drug addicts and alcoholics have relapsed. Depression and suicides have skyrocketed. Children have been deprived of education.

And for what? Texas with Abbott’s restrictions fared no better than Florida with no restrictions when it comes to Covid cases and deaths. The Texas governor knew that months ago when the data from Florida proved that lockdowns, masks, and other restrictions had no effect. But he refused to change course. He refused to follow the brave lead of Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and open Texas completely.

https://mailchi.mp/ronpaulinstitute/bigfreezetexas?e=4e0de347c8

Last week Texas experienced a cold snap that resulted in serious statewide damage, death, and destruction. The collapse of the state’s energy grid left millions of Texans in the dark and freezing for days at a time. Tragically, at least 30 people died.

There are many reasons why Texas became like a Third World country, and we should be careful not to pin all the blame on just one factor. But it seems clear that the disaster was to a large degree caused by political decisions to shift toward “green” energy generated from solar and wind and by Governor Abbott’s authoritarian Covid restrictions.

Abbott, who won a “wind leadership” award just this month, oversaw the near-collapse of wind energy generation last week. Yet the politicization of energy generation in favor of “green” alternatives over natural gas and other fossil fuels has led to the unintended consequences of freezing Texans facing multiple millions of dollars in property damage and worse.

Additionally, federal emissions and other restrictions forced Texas to beg Washington for permission to generate power at higher levels in anticipation of unprecedented demand. Governor Abbott finally received permission from the Department of Energy on February 14th, but by then many facilities found themselves off-line due to freezing conditions.

Why should the Federal government be allowed to freeze Texans to death in the name of controlling emissions from energy generation plants? It’s a classic example of politics over people. I guess if you want to make a “Green New Deal” omelet, you have to break a few eggs.

While Governor Abbott was quick to blame energy generators and even the state Electric Reliability Council of Texas, NBC News in Dallas reported that ERCOT “did not conduct any on-site inspections of the state’s power plants to see if they were ready for this winter season. Due to COVID-19 they conducted virtual tabletop exercises instead – but only with 16 percent of the state’s power generating facilities.”

Governor Abbott’s authoritarian Covid executive orders at least indirectly led to lax inspection, maintenance, and winterization of wind and other energy generation plants.

But Texas did not only freeze because of Abbott’s Covid restrictions. For the better part of a year thousands of businesses have been destroyed. Recovering drug addicts and alcoholics have relapsed. Depression and suicides have skyrocketed. Children have been deprived of education.

And for what? Texas with Abbott’s restrictions fared no better than Florida with no restrictions when it comes to Covid cases and deaths. The Texas governor knew that months ago when the data from Florida proved that lockdowns, masks, and other restrictions had no effect. But he refused to change course. He refused to follow the brave lead of Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and open Texas completely.

Politicians too stubborn or fearful to change course when facts dictate otherwise do not deserve to remain in office. Governors Gavin Newsom in California and Andrew Cuomo in New York are finally facing consequences for their Covid authoritarianism. When the smoke clears – and it is rapidly clearing – many more of these petty tyrants will fall. That list of deposed Covid tyrants may well include Texas Governor Greg Abbott – and the slumbering Texas state legislature – as well. 

Let’s hope Texans – and all Americans – will learn from this and more forcefully demand their God-given liberty!



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Dear US media, we don’t need Russia to attack our power grid, we’re perfectly capable of tanking it ourselves…just look at Texas — RT Op-ed

Posted by M. C. on February 18, 2021

Although the Post article is still freely available online without so much as a firewall, it comes with an editor’s note that reads, “An earlier version of this story incorrectly said that Russian hackers had penetrated the U.S. electric grid. Authorities say there is no indication of that so far. The computer at Burlington Electric that was hacked was not attached to the grid.”

https://www.rt.com/op-ed/515846-us-media-russia-texas/

Robert Bridge

Robert Bridge

Robert Bridge is an American writer and journalist. He is the author of ‘Midnight in the American Empire,’ How Corporations and Their Political Servants are Destroying the American Dream. @Robert_Bridge

One of the wilder charges the US mainstream media has leveled against Russia is that it could “kill the power” in the US during a brutal cold snap. Can Russia expect an apology now the US energy grid failed the Lone Star State?

‘Never let a good snowstorm go to waste’ appears to be the mantra of the moment as Texas suffers through a state of emergency. Amid freak weather conditions that sent temperatures plummeting across the country, leaving some three million Texans without power, Democrats are lecturing the Republican-run state for not adequately protecting their “outdated” fossil-fuel-powered resources. The Republicans are responding by blaming the crisis on “frozen windmills,” one of the left’s sacred cows representing a pollution-free world of endless free energy. Notice anything out of place?

America installed Antarctic wind turbines in 2010, but Texas is freezing because their privatized public energy utilities were too cheap to winterize their windmills. https://t.co/Bclt78DrCZ— Grant Stern (@grantstern) February 17, 2021

Strangely missing from this latest descent into American madness is the global arch-villain, Russia. That is a rather surprising omission considering that the American people have been conditioned to believe that if they find themselves without heat in the dead of winter the most likely culprit is not an aging and dilapidated energy grid, or even an unpaid heating bill, but rather a ruthless gang of Russian hackers, most likely in the employ of Vladimir Putin.

By way of example, back in 2016, at the very same time that Barack Obama had just expelled 35 Russian diplomats for “undermining our election processes and institutions,” the Washington Post ran a sensational story entitled, ‘Russian operation hacked a Vermont utility, showing risk to U.S. electrical grid security, officials say’.

No less of a governmental authority than Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin (D) was quoted in the article as saying: “Vermonters and all Americans should be both alarmed and outraged that one of the world’s leading thugs, Vladimir Putin, has been attempting to hack our electric grid, which we rely upon to support our quality-of-life, economy, health, and safety…”

There was just one problem with that explosive accusation against faraway Russia: it was entirely predicated upon fake news and disinformation. Although the Post article is still freely available online without so much as a firewall, it comes with an editor’s note that reads, “An earlier version of this story incorrectly said that Russian hackers had penetrated the U.S. electric grid. Authorities say there is no indication of that so far. The computer at Burlington Electric that was hacked was not attached to the grid.”

One must wonder what would happen in the event that the US media, after publishing some similarly unsubstantiated piece of derangement, finds itself responsible for dragging the world to the precipice of World War III because some people lost their heat in Spokane. Would anyone bother to read the buried editor’s note that finally sets the record straight before the missiles start flying? But I digress.

Fast forward to 2019, and the US media was in full-blown anti-Russia manic mode. After all, US presidential elections were fast approaching. In February, amid a different cold spell that swept across the nation, MSNBC host Rachel Maddow didn’t miss an opportunity to ratchet up Russophobia by asking her millions of listeners: “What would happen if Russia killed the power in Fargo [North Dakota] today? What would you do if you lost heat indefinitely as the act of a foreign power on the same day the temperature in your backyard matched the temperature in Antarctica?”

Oh, I don’t know, Rachel, what should I do, aside from freeze? Sit down and write a letter to my congressman?

U.S. largest audience TV host, MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow (Democratic party aligned) this evening: Russia will freeze you and your family to death. pic.twitter.com/2KL4STsQpg— WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) January 31, 2019

Had Rachel Maddow been your average media hack, working for some obscure backwater publication, then perhaps such a bone-chilling rhetorical question could be excused as gross unprofessionalism and journalistic immaturity; the work of an amateur fresh out of journalism school. After all, Moscow has never – not even during the height of the Cold War – made the cold-blooded decision to turn off Europe or America’s energy supplies, not in the summer nor in the dead of winter. Yes, there have been arguments over energy payments, specifically with Ukraine, but that is not the same thing as deliberately freezing people to death in their homes. If Rachel Maddow was unfamiliar with that information, that makes her a lousy journalist; if she was familiar with it, yet didn’t feel the need to mention it, that makes her an irresponsible hack with a heavy political ax to grind.

As host of the eponymous The Rachel Maddow Show, the liberal television commentator is one of the most prominent media figures in the United States, with millions of people tuning in nightly to her program. Since Maddow must be aware of her profound influence, which has no small effect on the state of relations between the world’s two preeminent nuclear powers, one would expect to find a hint of objectivity, a modicum of journalistic integrity before she serves up her latest cold dish of Russophobia. Unfortunately, and potentially tragically, there is none of that much-needed balance. When it comes to reporting on Russia, all Western journalists operate with the understanding that they can take tremendous liberties as they please. 

Somehow in the world of US journalism and global geopolitics this loathsome treatment of an entire nation has become the accepted norm, to the point where a veritable hate campaign – shall we call it ‘racism’ – has been conjured up out of the blue against Russia. In fact, it’s almost worth pondering if even the Jews have historically suffered a more negative press than the Russians, especially in these modern times. I’m guessing at this point it’s about a toss-up.

In any case, since there is already a heated debate underway in the US over who or what is to blame for the rolling blackouts, perhaps it might also be a good time to reflect upon the unfair treatment that has been leveled against the Russian people. After all, Russians have some experience with intemperate weather conditions and they certainly appreciate the importance of staying warm in the winter. Dreaming up some fantastic scenario where Russia magically switches off America’s power grid is not based on precedent or historical experience or even plausibility; rather, it is based on propaganda and cheap lies which only serve to drive up the level of distrust between America and Russia by journalists who really should know better. Before global warming in geopolitics gets any worse, best to treat Russians with the same journalistic scrutiny and integrity that all people deserve.   

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Why These Five States Would Be Better Independent Countries | The Daily Bell

Posted by M. C. on December 1, 2019

Add New Jersey. Many of us Pennsylvanians would gladly add Philadelphia as an incentive.

https://www.thedailybell.com/all-articles/news-analysis/why-these-five-states-would-be-better-independent-countries/

By Joe Jarvis

Trump scares me. But progressives terrify me.

Whoever comes next will be more extreme than Bernie Sanders.

Californians may hate Donald Trump now. But you can bet Texans will hate whoever comes next.

The federal two-party system ensures a perpetually unhappy populace. Each tries to force their will on the other when it is “their turn.”

And the rest of us, who aren’t on one side or the other, constantly lose.

This is unneeded friction. Forced unity creates far more problems than it solves.

But why put up with the swaying whims of federal politics?

In America, we have a marketplace of 50 state governments lying in wait.

I moved from Massachusetts to Florida three years ago. The taxes are lower, the living is cheaper, the laws are less restrictive, there’s little traffic, and the weather is nicer.

But that didn’t allow me to escape the shadow of Washington DC.

But imagine if we could keep the ease of moving from state to state, but without the federal government following us.

States would sink or swim on their own merits. No help from DC. And no interference either…

Plus, not a single US state would even be close to the smallest country on earth, by population or land area. Much tinier countries do just fine on their own.

California has plenty of reason to become its own country. It is the most progressive state without much in common with DC or many other states.

Californians are still being prosecuted by the feds for owning state-legal marijuana dispensaries. California wants liberal immigration policy, while the US government thinks otherwise.

It’s also the most populous state. It would be the 36th largest country on earth by population. Larger than Canada, Saudi Arabia, and Poland. Slightly smaller than Spain, Argentina, and Ukraine.

California has the 5th largest economy in the world. That’s ahead of Great Britain despite having less than 2/3 the population.

Some states are net payers of federal taxes. They pay more to the federal government than they get back.

California receives $.99 in federal expenditures for every $1.00 it pays. That means it would hardly be affected financially by divorcing the US government. Overall California would keep 1% more money in the state without federal taxes and without federal programs.

Other estimates claim it is much worse, and California only gets 70 cents back on every dollar it sends to Washington DC.

An initiative Calexit wants a 2020 ballot question to ask Californians if they want to secede from the US. Louis Marinelli is the co-author of the initiative. Here’s his take:

[C]an you think of 25 red states that might like to see blue California secede? I can think of 30 that voted for Donald Trump.

Look, the United States claims to be the freest country in the world. We ought to enjoy the fundamental right of self-determination, and if we so determine, self-rule.

Then California can sign a military base agreement with the Americans to lease land for their existing bases. California will not be hostile towards them, but our immigrants will be protected from them.

Additionally, by keeping the tens (sometimes hundreds) of billions of dollars we lose each year supporting red states that hate California, we will reduce our debts, fund our liabilities, and provide every Californian with a debt-free college education and universal healthcare.

I personally think Cali’s high taxes, restrictive regulation, and overbearing laws are ridiculous.

But who am I to tell Californians that they can’t bankrupt their state? I’d prefer to have them govern themselves, especially if that meant California voters didn’t have control over me and my affairs.

California isn’t the only state where federal taxes and aid zero out. New York and Florida are also large population states with close to even return based on what they give to DC.

Florida has millions more residents than Chile or the Netherlands.

With no income tax, it is quite attractive to work there.

Plus Florida has the 17th largest economy on Earth, topping $1 trillion GDP (Gross Domestic Product).

That’s bigger than Turkey’s economy, despite having just a quarter of the population.

At just under 21 million inhabitants, Florida would be the 58th largest country on Earth by population.

New York would be 59th by population.

With the 15th largest economy, this is slightly smaller than Spain’s economy. Meanwhile, Spain has twice the population of New York. Clearly, New York is quite capable of operating as an independent nation.

Of course, New York City alone could be its own country. And then they wouldn’t be able to dictate oppressive urban laws to rural upstate New Yorkers.

Then again, NYC wealth is redistributed to other portions of the state…

This highlights the natural friction of grouping incompatible regions under one government.

 

Texas is another large state that would do just fine on its own. As a country, it would be 51st largest by population, larger than Australia.

Texas’ GDP of $1.6 trillion is also slightly larger than each of the Australian, Russian, and South Korean economies.

The size of the economy is on par with Canada. Yet Canada has almost 9 million more residents.

Only three states receive less money per person from federal expenditures than Texas. Texas takes in the fourth smallest amount of money per capita from the federal government.

Oh, and of course there’s that little fact that Texas was once an independent country.

It became its own country, called the Republic of Texas, from 1836 until it agreed to join the United States in 1845. Sixteen years later, it seceded along with 10 other states to form the Confederacy. The Civil War forced it back into the Union, where it has stayed ever since.

New Hampshire would be a relatively small country–a little bigger than Estonia in terms of population.

But New Hampshire would also be the richest country in the world.

At least among the OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development) countries. This list includes 34 of the most advanced countries like the USA, UK, Australia, Japan, Denmark, Israel, the Netherlands, Canada, Chile, etc.

Median income, adjusted for purchasing power, even puts New Hampshire ahead of Luxembourg, Norway, and Switzerland.

New Hampshire is another net payer of taxes. It gets about 70 cents back on every dollar it sends to DC.

New Hampshire also has a small secession movement. One organization is called the Foundation for New Hampshire Independence. Another calls itself NHexit.

A 2014 Reuters poll showed 23.9 percent of Americans would support their state peacefully seceding from the union if necessary, while 53.3 percent opposed the idea.

Secession

This list is far from complete.

For instance, Hawaii probably has the most legitimate reason of any state to secede. They were an independent Kingdom until 1893. The USA annexed Hawaii after the monarchy was overthrown.

Native Americans are another group who have a strong historical claim to independence.

And what’s Alaska still doing as part of the United States anyway? It isn’t even attached.

Being united by force just averages the good states with the bad. It means states can’t feel the full benefit of their good policies. It means they don’t suffer the full consequences of their failures.

It means wealth is redistributed. It means power is centralized. It means individuals have less control than they would over a smaller, more local government.

Forced unity eliminates the marketplace for the government. Let the states compete, and the best policies will rise to the top.

The American people will then truly have a choice and a voice in government.

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CNN: El Paso Shooting Suspect’s Mom Called Police Weeks Before Attack

Posted by M. C. on August 8, 2019

A quick check of friends and social media would have prevented an Epic Fail.

Another case of everyone in town except the cops were on to this guy.

https://www.breitbart.com/politics/2019/08/07/cnn-el-paso-shooting-suspects-mom-called-police-weeks-before-attack/

by AWR Hawkins

The El Paso shooting suspect’s mother reportedly called police weeks prior to the August 3, 2019, attack that killed 22 people.

CNN reports that the suspect’s mother “called the Allen, Texas, Police Department…because she was concerned about her son owning an ‘AK’ type firearm.” She expressed concern over her son being able to own the firearm, “given his age, maturity level and lack of experience handling such a firearm.”

The mother was told that her son, a 21-year-old, was legally of age to possess the firearm.

Attorney’s for the suspect’s family indicate the mother was not calling to report her son as a danger. Rather, they describe her call as an “informational” one in which she was trying to ascertain what was legal.

Family attorney Chris Ayres said of the shooting suspect, “This was not a volatile, explosive, erratic behaving kid. It’s not like alarm bells were going off.”

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Packed Churches: .357, .45, and Glock

Posted by M. C. on November 9, 2017

https://www.garynorth.com/public/17349.cfm

In liberal political circles, the gun-abolition outlook of browbeaten Western Europe is common. Liberals want to make Americans as fearful about the state, and as unquestioning regarding state intervention in their lives, as citizens are in Western Europe. This outlook does not predominate in the United States with respect to political theory, but it is predominant in practice. Most people believe in the principle of the Second Amendment in the United States, but most people are rarely armed. Most people really believe that the state can defend them against terrorists. Americans have surrendered their liberty to the federal government since 2011 on this basis. That is why the massacre in Texas took place. Read the rest of this entry »

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