Sunday, September 17, 2006

Oil Prices - NYT Suprised at Oil Price Decline

Well, maybe not. At least not yet. At least not in public - yet...

A Question: Has the US Government completed its replenishment of the Strategic Reserve?

This factor has many implications:
  • A full reserve can be used to stabilize prices.
  • A full reserve is one preparation for war in the Middle East.
  • A full reserve means that the US Government is not competing in the market.
Economic factors:
  • What is India’s current economic status?
  • What is China’s current economic status?
  • What is the economic matrix of a barrel of oil costing $70 and a gallon of gasoline costing $2.50 (refined cost estimate). We know a barrel (55 gallons) cannot all be refined to gasoline so I am guessing the math sucks for Iran. They sell 55 gallons of oil at $70, Exxon or Shell or TotalFinaElf refines the oil to gasoline and other fuels, and sells it back to Iran at let’s say $2/gal. That is, export at $70, repurchase at $110. Very unsustainable. And, very difficult to remedy without internal refining capability.
Political factors:
  • Is Iran being slowly subsumed by another great power – thus following a pattern of weak ME pashas becoming clients of major powers? Is this a bad thing? Can we deal with China on a civilized basis, Iran? In my very humble and unlearned opinion I would greatly prefer Libysque ‘Frank Diplomatic Discussions’ with China to similar talks with Iran.
And, one market factor:
  • How many times can Mahmoud Ahmadinejad cry wolf before the markets ‘discount’ him? This may not be the smart thing to do, but it is the natural thing to do. Very coy regarding the August 22 thang – but also dumb long term. When he is discounted he will cease to affect the market price.

Saturday, September 16, 2006

The Western Way...

Re(1): ‘Not a sparrow falls to earth’, The Belmont Club, Wretchard TC
Re(2): 'Planet X in Washington', The Belmont Club, Wretchard TC
Re(3): 'Storm Warning...', My Sandmen, Mr. Atos

Wretchard asks the question:
Our human problem is more prosaic: who actually killed Mohammed Al-Dura? But for those looking for a larger answer, try this: the camera killed the little boy. A man and a boy cringing in a crossfire at no great distance from two groups of armed men was the obvious target of neither: no side's marksmanship could be that bad. But they became the center of a second drama within the first. Anyone present would sense the obvious question and the camera kept on Al-Dura -- hoping? Is that too much of a word to use? -- for the "shot". It was a sentence waiting for the punctuation. And it came when eventually someone, or some ricochet, or some unaimed shot provided the clinching scene. I have often wondered whether 60 men would take the trouble to kill an unknown election worker on Haifa street without the assurance of front page coverage. If looks could kill? Oh, but they can.
Another question must be asked - in the light of the Plame-Neptune planetary wobble.

Is this a form of Western Terror?

A terror that subsumes terror. A guiding light.

Would Islamic Terror be as malevolent and as prevalent and as encompassing without the unseen hand? A hand holding to dreams that can’t be attained through democratic process. A hand with a voice.

Believing An Unaccepted ideal?
Accepting An Underappreciated social structure?

A Western Terror need not be directly violent to force change on the great unwashed. When Islamic or Irish or Bolivian terrorists require the camera, and the camera comes, who is the terrorist?

Are there not other theaters in the Global War on Terror?

Tuesday, September 12, 2006


Re(1): 'August Monthly Treasury Statement', Federal Government


WARNING: Do not click on these links till tomorrow. These links will point to the August 2006 Monthly Treasury Statement if they follow their consistent naming conventions. Right now, they point to nothing. The report is published on the eighth working day of the month. Smack has no value when the game is over, eh...

Obviously, America is a giant Hooverville...

Prediction: Tomorrow's August Federal Deficit will come in at around 10 Billion dollars - potentially less...

Meaning: We will be looking at an annual Federal Budget Deficit of less than 200 Billion dollars.

This means that this years annual deficit will be 118 Billion less than last year.

This includes all DOD spending - to include the 2006 suplimental.

This includes all expected Katrina spending.

This is < 1.5% of our growing GDP.

This is < 7.5% of our shrinking spending growth.

Next year the DOD suplimental will be significantly reduced and there will be no new Katrina spending. Libs, the economy is expanding in a sustainable fashion. The tax base is growing in a rapid fashion. And, there is pressure on the Republican Congress to reign in spending.


Hitchens Redux!!!

Re(1): 'How not to hunt a tiger', The Belmont Club, Wretchard T.C.
Re(2): 'Tony Jones speaks with author and commentator Christopher Hitchens', LateLine, Terry Jones
Re(3): 'From the Archives: The Public Destruction of Moonbats...', Me

A warning from Wretchard of The Belmont Club regarding debates against folks who know the topic at hand:
... no one who doesn't command the topic or the language should try such a
high wire interviewing style.

Hear and see the bones crunch!!!

And, for your further entertainment please review my archives!!!

From the Archives: The Public Destruction of Moonbats...

For those reluctant to click here are some debates that absolutely must be seen and heard:

The Dean/Pearle drubbing...
Or the VDH/Huffington destruction...
Or, oh my God, the Great Hitchens/Galloway mauling...

Thats right, Hitchens has taken down two (minimum) 9/10ers.

Watch and enjoy - the Libs even think they win these things.

Bring it On

Saturday, September 09, 2006

The Silky Path to 9/11

Re(): "This is it: crunch time for getting the slanderous ABC television docudrama 'The Path to 9/11' yanked off the air.",, Ann Althouse
Re(): 'The Kerry Cabinet', National Journal, Carl M. Cannon

When one gets right down to it the controversy over ‘The Path to 9/11’ comes down to who is/was more serious with regards to defending the country. To that end, let us review the 2000 election:

Emphasis on National Defense:

Part of the 'W' election discussion centered on the military was becoming a 'hollow force' under the Clinton Administration - and that hollowing out would continue under Gore. A vote for 'W' in 2000 was a vote for increased emphasis on defense. A vote for Gore in 2000 was a vote for status quo regarding defense of our nation. Both potential Presidents could only affect the budget with their first Fiscal Year in office - ie. 2001/10/01 onward.

Which of these policies – ‘W’ or Gore – were more prescient to our times?
Vice President:

‘W’ chose a former Secretary of Defense for his Vice President. Al Gore selected
a Senator.

Which of these selections was more clearheaded given the issues of our times?
Secretary of Defense:

‘W’ chose a former Secretary of Defense as his Secretary of Defense. Al Gore kept is choices close to the vest, but was apparently thinking of keeping Cohen on the job or maybe selecting another Senator for the position.

Which of these choices has more gravitas?
Secretary of State:
‘W’ selected the former Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff as his Secretary of State. Al Gore was apparently looking at Senator Sam Nunn or Ambassador Holbrooke.

In a war on terror, your selection can be a Senator or a General.
Who was more serious and farsighted in the run-up to his election? Why did Al Gore ‘keep his selections close to the vest’, while ‘W’ presented his choices to the voting public prior to the November 2000 election?

Now, let us get more current - that is, after 9/11:

Does anyone want a rundown of the potential cabinet positions of Senator John Kerry to determine the focus of a Kerry Presidency during a time of war. Apparently, here were his choices from the National Journal:
"Earlier this year, Kerry himself mentioned four names. Two of them, John Warner of Virginia and John McCain of Arizona, are Republican senators. The other two are Sen. Carl Levin, D-Mich., and former Clinton administration Pentagon chief William Perry."
Kerry wanted two Republican Senators, a Democratic Senator, or the wizard of Somolia William Perry.

The article also places the ever so serious Congressman John Murtha on a very long list...

The list is so long it is obvious that the position is a political one - not based on ability.

Who is still more serious about the 'Great War for Democracy’?

Thursday, September 07, 2006

2006/09/07 - An Unrecorded Milestone

Re(1): 'Better Late Than Never', RealVerse, Bethany
Re(2): 'The 2,996 Project', D.Challener Roe

HT: 'Bethanymania: RealVerse returns',, AllahPundit

IMPORTANT ADDENDUM 2006/09/07 1855

Bethany reminded me of of the 2,996 Project - a project to memorialize each and every one of the murder victims of the 9/11 terror attacks...

She reminded me of something I felt must be posted...

American (and Coallition) Fatalities in OIF:
American (and Coallition) Fatalities in OEF:

On 2006/09/07 Military Fatalities in Iraq and Afghanistan equaled the murder count of 9/11.

Within one week of the five year anniversary of the attack...

Question Libs: Do you want to fight them over there, or over here?

ADDENDUM 2006/09/07 1855

Good God, Bethany is stunning!

As a comparison, here is a 'stunning' Lefty:

Sunday, September 03, 2006

Pax Americana Into its Second Century...

Re(1): 'The Nation That Fell To Earth', Time Magazine, Niall Ferguson
Re(2): 'NYT Surprised by 2nd Annual Jump In Revenues since Tax Cuts...', Me
Re(3): 'The Aftermath: Hezbollah's Looming Loss', StrategyPage, Austin Bay
Re(4): 'Is Britain tired of its multiculturalist mantra?', The Daily Star, Muhammad Zamir
Re(5): 'New violence erupts near Chechnya', al-Reuters

As my post title illustrates I don't see things exactly as Ferguson sees them, but his long view is intriguing - and correct.

At the edge, how do we know when we win 'The Great War for Democracy'?
And, will the West accept losing this 'The Great War for Democracy'?

We know we are winning the 'Great War for Democracy' when we can use that term unabashedly. When will that occur?

When we no longer run deficits – even though we are still actively dealing with global terrorism. When the proxies of global terrorism are unmasked for what they are – weak pawns of weak horses. When global terrorism involves all major civilizations in the conflict.

All these markers are coming to bare.

  • Our (United States) annual deficit is receding rapidly. It will zero out within two years – my guess is next year. That is not a positive datapoint for Islamic Terror. bin Laden attempted to destroy our economy. He failed miserably.
  • Hezbollah and Hamas are facing their Katrina test this year - and for years to come. Are the sponsors of terror going to be able to martial the men and material and knowledge and organizational skill to rebuild their proxy polities after wars they started and lost? Do they have the resources to fight democracy at home, deal with massive military might on their borders, steam along on complex and expensive Manhattan Projects, and rebuild regions decimated by wars they initiated? I think not. It shall be demonstrated that they can fight and lose, but not that they can govern and prosper.
  • While China and Russia are playing great power games, they are playing them at the edge. Another Beslan changes things for Russia. In fact, in 2006 just how are the Chechen Islamic terrorist doing in their struggle against Russia. A major Islamic terrorist attack in China opens another front. It will happen. Sooner rather than later. Then Militant Islam will have enemies on all sides.

    Soon, within President Bush’s tenure, we will be able to call this conflict ‘The Great War for Democracy’. Maybe this year.
We will know we have won when we can repeatedly elect representatives on an 'It's the economy stupid' platform. Not yet, not for quite a while. Good people like Mark Warner cannot run on this platform, and they will face an uphill battle in dealing with the still undefeated extremes in their Party.

On accepting a loss in the ‘Great War for Democracy’ I can say without reservation that the long range answer will be a resounding NO.

  • There may be blips in the short term – but the enemy will reinforce our will to fight. Take for example a takeover of Congress by silly isolationists and conversationalist. It may be peaches and cream for a short time, but what happens when it is viciously demonstrated that there is nobody to talk to. Our civilization, our culture, our nation can deal with millions of casualties – but we will be enraged by the murder of thousands. Can militant Islam fight us toe to toe, can they control their decentralized goon squad organizations enough to hold a winning strategy against the West? Again, I think not.
  • I would not want to be on the side of deep discussion with Iran, Syria, North Korea, Hezbollah, Hamas, Islamic Jihad, or Osama bin Laden. When those turds strike Paris or attempt to launch a missile at, or over, Japan or detonate some huge bomb in Toronto or machine gun a gay parade in San Francisco it will show the voters just how ineffective group therapy sessions are when dealing with ideological murderers. In fact, my biggest concern revolves around the destruction of the Democratic Party as an entity worth listening to – and voting for. A One-Party republic is not a stable democracy.
  • On Niall's belief that we will win this conflict outside military means I accept and deny his conjecture. How absolutely presumptuous of me. I accept that victory will be measured by non-military datapoints. However, the application of military might enhances and illustrates and aggravates those datapoints. Without active military capability on the borders of Iran and Syria and Saudi Arabia (and Pakistan) we would have to wait much longer for natural degradation to occur. Our military forces these sponsors of terror to expend resources they could have used elsewhere. Fighting this conflict without the use of military force is like playing a basketball game on your defensive court. You could (and in this case would) with, but the game will be close and consume many extra overtime periods to break the tie – do we have the time against a suicidal, aggressive, ideological foe?

The Left on Iraq or Iran or Whatever :-&

The Left on Iraq:
Caesar Clinton’s targeted bombing of Iraq’s WMD facilities – along with the intrepid actions of the expelled UN inspectors - destroyed Iraq’s capability to ever develop, produce, and use those weapons!
The Left On Iran:

BusHitler’s incompetent regime can’t seem to figure out that bombing Iran’s WMD facilities will do nothing - it is guaranteed to fail. We must win a 'war of words' with Iran!

Consistency is the Hobgoblin of Small Minds...

The World at War…

The French are in the fight!

However, on which side do they find themselves?

What I mean is, um, oh, uuuggghhh, I can’t really put this diplomatically. I have to ask the question. I have to get the truth out. Is America at war against France? Are we involved in another illegal and immoral war of conquest and enslavement?

This should shut Victor Davis Hanson up!
This proves democracies do fight each other!