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Dumb Me Down, Scottie
Languages have become more dynamic, acquiring new vocabulary from other cultures and are in a state of flux. English is particularly adept at borrowing from other languages.
German has more foreign loan words than English: computer, car rental, fast food, just to name a few. Often they are practical items in everyday life.
Even a few innocent French ones survive as restaurants, although one got rid of the fries, which were politically adjusted to freedom fries.
English already has a number of words derived from German: Blitz, Lebensraum, Zeitgeist, Schadenfreude and Gestalt (some more respectable, some less tainted than others). They are all abstract, their concepts better understood in their original coin than the English equivalent.
I preach another. The time is right. Daily political events and their coverage in the mainstream news media scream for Volksverdummung. For once, the German word is shorter than its translation: to deliberately deceive the public.
Let me give you a few examples that all happen to be related to the gas record. In his latest segment on How to Survive Gas Pump Crisis and Shock, a CNN and medical guru I adore recommends walking more: save gas and lose weight. What a novel idea! Smaller cars use less gas. Liar! Drive slower to reduce gas consumption. All the gratuitous remarks and insults in the face of consumers, or are Americans still asleep and completely ignorant?
The prevailing wisdom coming out of the White House a week ago was a gas tax break to ease the burden on consumers. No big deal for the likes of Bush and McCain, who either have their own oil well, free use of a car, or access to a money-grubbing press.
Now Bush and his political twin McCain had a brainwave. Off the table since disasters like the one off the coast of Santa Barbara in 1979, offshore drilling may be the answer to today’s oil price collapse. Crist, the governor of Florida, has taken a step to avoid losing his chance as McCain’s running mate by promising not to drill in the Everglades, etc.
Speaking with NPR today about the challenges of building offshore oil rigs, Chevron spokesman Mickey Driver admits that we won’t see prices drop anytime soon. Neither the politicians nor the oil companies have yet to answer the question of why the millions of acres already under lease (about 68) are not being drilled to increase production.
Also last year, the Department of Energy (DOE) stated that lifting the OCS (Outer Continental Shelf) drilling moratorium “will not significantly affect domestic crude oil and natural gas prices before 2030,” which is well after investments. Alternative energy sources will have a greater impact on reducing gas prices for consumers: “Projections in the DOE OCS study show that access to the Pacific, Atlantic, and eastern Gulf regions will not have a significant impact on domestic crude oil and natural gas production or prices through 2030. .Since oil prices are determined in the international market, however, any impact on average wellhead prices is expected to be negligible.” (Quotes taken from official press release: http://www.house.gov/apps/list/press/fl20_schultz/DrillingFacts.html ).
In the years since the Club of Rome’s disastrous predictions (1970s) that oil reserves would run out for decades, we consumers have listened to a litany of prayers from both the oil companies and their cronies, politicians like Bush and the like. consortia that will start looking for alternatives to get rid of oil dependence. Hydropower, solar power, wind turbines, it’s all good, but unfortunately it’s not possible yet because gas prices weren’t high enough. Exactly how high is high enough? Answer: To justify the investment and monetization of these alternatives. This mantra has been repeated over the years. It has now reached approx. $140, still no convincing effort here.
You hear about obscure little countries like Iceland and Denmark being almost independent of oil and relying on turbine power. The great Germany is the technological leader in the field of solar energy. Where is Florida, USA? Where I live they have enough sunlight to contribute to the grid. Instead of continuing billions in oil subsidies, the GOP still won’t talk about energy conservation, but wants to scrap the moratorium on drilling.
Does no one in the GOP listen to NPR? The interesting, unbiased, non-condescending discussions they invite with experts on topics such as offshore drilling today are easy to follow and excel in depth of information. Many politicians – who are not bribed, targeted and not overly lobbied – would benefit from listening.
Perhaps another example would be more persuasive for the Volkswerdumung, such as the reasons that led the Americans to believe that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction and that they would welcome us as liberators, that the war would pay off; ironically with oil. I hope the concept has crossed the language barrier.
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