Daily Fix, March 3

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*Oil topped $100/barrel and has hit $4 a gallon in parts of the county. It continues to rise rapidly. According to a Wall Street Journal piece “We can expect in coming months to hear many sober analysts attempt to explain the complex reasons for rising oil prices: inflation, Middle East tremors, growing demand. Expect, too, for all those reasons to vanish behind what most Americans will see as the far more obvious (and graspable) cause: President Obama’s regulatory assault on domestic oil and gas production. This is, after all, a White House that has put at the center of its domestic agenda its goal of a “green economy,” which hinges on making fossil fuels too expensive for Americans to purchase. In January 2008, candidate Obama told the San Francisco Chronicle that under his cap-and-trade plan, “electricity rates would necessarily skyrocket.” Steven Chu, now Secretary of Energy, told this newspaper in the same year: “Somehow, we have to figure out how to boost the price of gasoline to the levels in Europe.” That would be, oh, $10 a gallon.” Read the rest at the WSJ

*A federal judge just declared Idaho’s open primaries unconstitutional. The ruling by Judge B. Lynn Winmill deals specifically with Republican primary elections and will allow them to have closed primaries. Idaho Statesman

*The Illinois State Police are refusing to release a list identifying all firearm permit holders in the state after a reporter for The Associated Press made a Freedom of Information Act request to the police for the names of cardholders as well as information about the weapons each permit holder is authorized to carry. But the state police, who safeguard that information, resisted as lawmakers and others raised privacy concerns. Critics questioned what public interest it would serve to let neighbors look up each other’s potential weapons cache — further, they warned that publicizing the information could put both gun owners and those who don’t own guns at risk. Fox

*A bill designed to restrict collective bargaining by state employees has narrowly passed in the Ohio Senate. Under Senate Bill 5, unionized workers could negotiate wages, hours and certain work conditions, but not health care, sick time or pension benefits. “Our cities are not making their pension payments, they are not making their workers comp payments, they are not doing infrastructure projects, they are gutting basic services,” said Sen. Shannon Jones, the bill’s sponsor. “Why? Because their hands are tied by collective bargaining agreements.” WLWT News

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8 Responses to “Daily Fix, March 3”

  1. JBT Says:

    It is sheer nonsense to blame President Obama for the rise in gasoline prices. Shame on you Holly. I thought you were smarter than that.

  2. Larry Chandler Says:

    Gas prices surged to over $4.00 per gallon under George Bush in the summer of 2008. So why is the WSJ (and perhaps you) blaming Obama? The unrest in the Middle East is why the spot price of oil continues to rise.

  3. hollyonthehill Says:

    I am flattered that you believe I am smarter than the writers at the Wall Street Journal. I am so busy, all I can do right now is pull articles from other places. Thought you might be interested in the bio of the author: Kimberley Strassel, a member of the Journal editorial board, writes Potomac Watch every Friday. Ms. Strassel joined the Journal in 1994 and has worked as a reporter in Europe and as an editor and editorial writer in New York.

  4. Larry Chandler Says:

    First, why do you assume that reporters are always smarter than legislators (or anyone else)? They may have a specific skill that you lack, but intelligence has nothing to do with it.

    Second, you did add your comments to this article and did not merely quote or link to them.

    Third, despite Kimberley Strassel’s impressive credentials, she is not merely a neutral observer but a partisan advocate for a particular point of view.

    The fact remains that gas prices went up under Bush and are going up under Obama and that the reasons for it have nothing to do with either man. Obama’s thinking may be in error, and his staff may have bizarre ideas on energy policy, but that is not relevant to the fluctuations in gas prices.

    And while right now you are understandably busy, if you quote someone, be prepared to defend it. Because others will attack it and it probably isn’t good to be seen as running from an argument.

    But it is nice that, unlike some others, you are willing and able to communicate intelligently with people in an open and transparent manner. And yes, you probably are smarter than many reporters at the WSJ and elsewhere.

  5. hollyonthehill Says:

    Thanks, Larry. You are very kind.
    I agree that the unrest in the Middle East is the key reason gas prices are rising. However, a moratorium on drilling, both on and off-shore and an apparent unwillingness to truly pursue energy independence can be laid at Obama’s feet. Right in Utah, the yanking of the 77 leases in the Uintah basin cost our economy tens of millions of dollars – at least.
    (And in another week, I’ll have more time to do some original writing.)

  6. Larry Chandler Says:

    Good. Then I will wait until you have more time to continue the discussion (but only after I finish this post)!

    What I would like to see is a complete and open discussion of exactly what is “energy independence”, how much it costs, who pays for it, and what are the benefits and consequences of pursuing it.

    Energy independence should include drilling on shore and off, but also alternatives, should there be a limit (to the actual resource, but also financially and technologically) to what can be obtained this way.

    It will be difficult, because energy independence has become a political football. (Just like entitlement reform.)

    This country has never really pursued energy independence, though there were some half-baked and half-assed ideas proposed and some even implemented.

  7. bronson Says:

    Holly,

    I am curious as to why you would co sponsor on HB 477. It is a terrible piece of legislation.

    Bronson

  8. steven Says:

    Rep Holly, Please do something on HB 477, the records bill.Thanks stevo

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