Weekly Comments Archive
Archived Issue
Sunday, July 17, 2022
ISSUE #1119
Lower Gas Prices, Higher Temps, More Wildlife, and Great Speakers. Bonus: The Oak Ridge Boys

President Biden is more persuasive that we thought. He implored your local gas station owners to lower the price. And they did. They cut their average 5-cents a gallon profit by 95 cents.

While most Americans are concerned about the economy, inflation at 9%, and high prices for food and fuel, President Biden’s main issue is climate change. Regardless of the effect on the lives of average Americans, he is determined to cut greenhouse gas emissions in 2030 to half the level they were in 2005.

The President does not have a majority of votes in Congress to adopt dramatic changes, so Senator Whitehouse from Rhode Island is demanding he use Executive actions to cut fuel use. Yes, he is from a state where you could bicycle from one side to the other, eat lunch, and get back home before dark. This winter, I guess he’ll shut off the fuel oil furnace and burn wood instead.

Texas and California have already experienced rolling blackouts when air-conditioners are running at full throttle. Manufacturers have to cut back production in favor of residential comfort. Wind and solar energy are weather dependent. On extremely hot days the wind does not blow as much. And it is still hot at sundown. The usual “backup” generators are not available. Operating a gas-powered power plant at less than half capacity is not economical so they go out of business.

I’ll keep repeating a key point until someone in charge recognizes it: the federal agency responsible for anticipating changes in energy use (the EIA), says that in 2050 we will use slightly more oil and gas than today. Solar and wind, while increasing rapidly, will only be the third most used energy source in 2050. So please stop demanding we shut down the amazingly efficient and productive energy sources that have kept this country at the top of the global economy and provide for our national security.

Do you have any endangered wildlife on your land? The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has decided it’s necessary to protect the habitat not only where these rare animals are, but where they might want to move to in the future. They may have spent their entire existence in California, but they may decide Texas is more habitable. This places limits on farming and ranching and drilling. In western Oklahoma the lesser prairie-chicken (grouse) is endangered. Old-time ranchers who say they have never seen one on their fields are still regulated. Concerning oil drilling, when the Alaska Pipeline was planned the environmentalist were scared it would cut the population of caribou. But the caribou love standing under or next to the raised sections because they get warmth from the flowing crude oil.

Last week, Saturday to Monday, I was in Nashville for the annual conference of the National Speakers Association, called Influence. We had a lot of younger, lesser-known high-energy presenters on the main stage. Plus, a few “seasoned veterans” shared their wisdom about the speaking business (which, I’m reminded, is really the “meetings business”).  A huge highlight was a performance by The Oak Ridge Boys. (I got terrific photos, and a short video of “Elvira.”)

If you have followed me for a while, you know my favorite group of professional speakers is the “Tall Women.” I have been their “official photographer” since 1996. To be in this exclusive fun group, you have to be at least 6 feet tall. This year we missed the founder of the group. Jeanne Robertson, 6’2”, former Miss North Carolina, passed away last August, while preparing at home for another theater show (she had 55 booked). By the way, if you want to listen to great humor, look her up on YouTube. If you want to buy a CD or DVD, go to:  www.storejeannerobertson.com.

Historic quotes by Will Rogers:

“I think we put too much emphasis and importance on our so-called High standard of living.  I think that ‘high’ is the only word in that phrase that is really correct.  We sure are a-living High. Our Children are delivered to the schools in Automobiles.  But whether that adds to their grades is doubtful….  It’s also a question what we can convert these 4 billion filling Stations into in years to come.  But it ain’t my business to do you folks’ worrying for you.” Saturday Evening Post, June 2, 1928 

“You always learn something. I know now why they call ’em ‘After Dinner Speeches.’ That’s because they can’t be made during a meal. I thought you could talk anytime, but you can’t. You got to get ’em full first. In fact, the best way to do it is to get ’em so full that they have to stay and listen. They can’t get out.” WA #224, March 27, 1927

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