# 396, February 4, 2006
COLUMBUS: President Bush gave his State of the Union address Tuesday. It was more of a “this is the State I wish the Union was in” speech. He said we are addicted to gasoline, and that we should make ethanol from wood chips, switchgrass and various waste products. Well, it’s not gasoline we’re hooked on, it’s cheap gasoline. Replacing gas with ethanol at $5 a gallon is easy. But we want ethanol at $1 a gallon, and that’s tough to do even if you make it out of weeds and sawdust.
It’s been a big week for these “State” addresses. Bin Laden and Al-Zawahiri both gave a “State of Al-Qaeda” televised address. Once you cut through the politics, about all they said was, “Hey, we’re still alive.” The terrorist running Iran gave his response to President Bush, “You say you want more nuclear power plants… well, so do we.” We haven’t heard anything from North Korea yet. It takes quite a while for news to get in and out of there by donkey.
The Virginia governor followed President Bush with the Democratic angle on the country. Since he was in Virginia, and he was recently elected, he figured the state of the Democratic Party was looking mighty good, at least in his home state.
Republican Congressmen elected a new leader, John Boehner. He told his fellow Republicans, “Elect me, and you won’t need to rely on Lobbyists for campaign funds. I’ll just carry you myself.” See, John comes from a huge family in Ohio, and they all live in his district so he’s got enough votes right there without spending a dime. So he figures he can share the wealth with enough of his fellow Congressmen to get them all re-elected.
A few days ago I was called on the address the farm machinery dealers of Ohio and Michigan. They had Elvis Presley perform for ’em the night before and he was so terrific they were still all shook up when I got there. I told ’em that in “my” days in Vaudeville I had followed a fair number of acts that kinda died right there on stage. But this was the first time I followed one that had been dead for years.
I kidded those folks about their modern equipment. “Haven’t seen a tractor working all day. The country has gone sane and got back to horses. Farmers all look worse, but they feel better.” (DT # 2112, May 11, 1933) Then I reminded them, “Horses raise what the farmer eats and eats what the farmer raises. You can’t plow the ground and get gasoline.” (DT #1967, Nov. 23, 1932) Well, they got me on that one; said today you can plant corn and get ethanol. And you don’t even have to plow to do it.
Today I read where a bunch of scientists in London predict that in fifty years England will get rid of all the cars and buses and airplanes, and give everyone a horse. They say this is the only way for ’em to satisfy that international Kyoto agreement on air quality. Well, I’m all for clean air and I sure like horses. But you put a million of ’em in downtown London and the aroma of their air will be a big shock, even if every horse comes with its own shovel. The plan would, however, solve any potential shortage of fertilizer.
Historic quote from Will Rogers:
“California had a bill to investigate lobbying, and the lobbyists bought off all the votes and they can’t even find the bill now. Putting a lobbyist out of business is like a hired man trying to fire his boss.” DT #2704, April 5, 1935