One way to encourage a nuclear deemphasis is to force the Department of Defense to pay for their weapons. Right now, the DoD gets nuclear weapons "for free" as they are funded through the Department of Energy. (This discourages the DoE from working on clean, renewable, alternative sources of energy.) If the DoD had to budget for their nukes, then the warheads would have to compete against other military programs desired by each service. And, given competitive budget pressures and the low military utility of nuclear weapons, this would put the few advocates of nuclear weapons in a difficult position.
The Solano County (California) Democratic Central Committee and the Northern Solano Democratic Club have passed a resolution to transfer responsibility for nuclear matters to the DoD, thus liberating the DoE to pursue clean, renewable, alternative energy sources and forcing the DoD to pay for any nuclear warheads:
A Resolution in Support of Refocusing the Department of Energy onto Clean, Renewable, Energy by transferring the National Nuclear Security Administration to the Department of Defense
WHEREAS the United States of America is in need of bountiful amounts of reliable, safe, and secure sources of clean, renewable, non-nuclear supplies of energy for sustained economic growth in a high-technology post-industrial era and to become independent from the pressure of other nations, and
WHEREAS the Department of Energy, through the National Nuclear Security Administration, spends an inordinate amount of time, money, and resources focusing on the development and management of nuclear weapons, reactors for nuclear-powered naval vessels, and special nuclear materials used primarily by the Department of Defense without cost to the Department of Defense (they are budgeted through the Department of Energy) instead of working to help the United States to attain energy independence, and
WHEREAS the Department of Defense currently receives the advantages of nuclear research, development, testing, engineering, manufacture, and maintenance of nuclear weapons without having to account for these activities in its budget,
THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED THAT the _______________ supports reassigning the National Nuclear Security Administration from the Department of Energy to the Department of Defense thus relieving the Department of Energy of its nuclear weapons and related responsibilities, and taking the first step toward changing the primary focus of the Department of Energy to clean, and renewable energy,
BE IT RESOLVED THAT the ________________ supports requiring the Department of Energy to develop, create, fund, and distribute alternative sources of clean, renewable non-nuclear supplies of energy to all Americans.
... is to dedicate the HOT lanes to carpools and buses ONLY. As a matter of basic right and wrong, people should not be able to buy their way out of problems, whether it be HOT lanes or gated "communities" where those able to pay the going rate can partially secede from local government and local problems. HOT lanes are another example of the partial privatization of a public good.
Also, as a matter of common sense, public transit should not be dependent upon auto tolls for revenue when the goal is to get people out of their cars and onto public transit.
One of the problems in the Bay Area is the Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC). It acts as a gatekeeper of money but does not operate any transit systems. A look at the 19 commissioners of the MTC and what each represents is revealing, particularly for those of us in Solano County. Of the 19, only one is from Solano. He is James P. Spering, a pro-development Republican county supervisor. He represents District 3, a predominately Democratic region made up of large chunks of Democratic Fairfield and Suisun City. (Another example of why non-partisan elections are bad.) Bus service is Fairfield and Suisun City -- a contract operation -- is atrocious, the details of which belong in a diary of their own, but one example should suffice: the first Fairfield city bus gets to the local AmTrak station about 90 minutes after the first train leaves. The rest of Solano County has zero representation on the MTC. Furthermore, most of the commissioners represent cities, counties, and other governmental agencies. No one directly represents the people as far as I can tell.
Part of the problem is that many local transit systems are run by city governments. The better ones, such as AC Transit, are their own public entities with boards of directors elected by the people. (Yes, I know AC Transit has money problems but HOT lanes have nothing to do with their operating expenses.)
As one who remembers life in the Bay Area before the MTC was created, I assure you the MTC hasn't been much help. The Bay Area Rapid Transit District (BART) and AmTrack already provide a regional rail network around which all local public transit operators -- independent of city and county politics -- can build a route structure as the good ones do. We need more and better public transit but the MTC is not capable of offering that. Only dedicated organizations -- such as AC Transit -- that own and operate their own rolling stock, employ their operators and mechanics, and set their levels of service can. That is the direction we need to go, not HOT lanes.
His temper is legendary in the Senate.
His compulsive lying is on full display in this election.
He dumped his wife who stood by him while he was captive.
He aimed obscenities at his (current) wife.
Does anyone know if he has ever sought mental health treatment? Every so often I think he is fighting the Vietnam War in head over and over. I wonder what his medical records show. Is he suffering from possible Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder?
He is also the only military officer I can think of who seems proud of having been a prisoner of war. Other than McCain, I have never heard of a soldier who was proud to have been captured, a sailor who was proud to have had his/her ship sunk, or an airman who was proud to have been shot down.
... is a good time for everyone to take a Basic Accounting course (or two or three) from their local community college. A course in Finance would also be useful. The GOPigs are counting on us to be ignorant. If more Americans had a knowledge of accounting and finance, the Great Treasury Robbery of 2008 would already have been jeered out of town.
Not only does he not have any honor, he is also the only military officer I can think of who is proud of being a POW.
Before McCain, I have never heard of soldiers who were proud to have been captured, sailors who were proud to have had their ship sunk, or an airman who was proud to have been shot down. There is something seriously wrong with this guy.
"We live in fame or go down in flames ... "
- From The Air Force Song (Wild Bluwe yonder) by Robert Crawford
P. S. Yes, I know McCain's Navy, but the line makes the point.
Maybe we can get some attention on the scandals in Alaska: "Tubes" Stevens, "Bridge" Young, Veco oil, all the Alaska corrpution, etc. Did McSame just highlight the Alaska mud surrounding the former beauty pageant contestant and all the Alaska GOPigs?
I'd be interested in hearing the reaction from candidates Begich and Berkowitz, and what they have to say about Palin.
And don't forget that Senator Stevens' corrpution trial will be underway.
She also has her own scandal. Can the Alaska state house initiate impeachment proceedings against her? The timing would be perfect.
Also, what was her position on the Iraq war? She needs to be asked about foreign policy. What is her plan for Iraq? Should we go to war with Iran? What should the U. S. do about Russia and Georgia?
Finally, now is the time for Senator Clinton to come out roaring. She can attack Governor Palin like no other can.
That might be. The only observation I have is that the five years from the start of the Iraq War (2003) to the 2008 election runs a little bit on the high side. The average time between "trigger" event and "confirmation" is three years. But time will tell. One thing is for certain: historians 20 to 40 years from now will be doing a lot of interesting analysis of the times in which we now live.