Sunday, May 6, 2007

Does anyone have a clue?

"We are continuing this policy in bleeding America to the point of bankruptcy." Osama Bin laden October 2004

"I would argue that the most serious threat to the United States is not someone hiding in a cave in Afghanistan or Pakistan but our own fiscal irresponsibility."-David Walker, Comptroller General of the United States [March 2007]

"We are entering an era in which we know nothing much, where we have a brand-new set of rules...One of these new rules, in my opinion, is that there will be in the very near future nothing like business as usual. In my opinion, nothing is usual from now on for any of the countries involved. And the lower you are in the pile, the worse it is going to get."- Dr. Ali Samsam Bakhtiari Whiskey & Gunpowder May 2007

So, we have had "debates" for both the Democratic and Republican Presidential candidates. Think of the things we have learned. Democrats continue to cling to a belief in an omnipotent federal government--- witness the discussion about what the federal government could have done to prevent the massacre at Virginia Tech. It also appears that all the Dems support some sort of federal health care plan and an increase in taxes on the "rich". On the other hand the Republicans all promised to lower taxes once in office, but seemed to have a little disagreement about evolution, if you can believe that.

The three statements at the top of this post reflect "big-picture" issues and problems America will be confronted with over the next several years. You might think that in three hours of political dialogue someone might offer a plan to address these issues--- but guess what? These topics never came up--not once. These issues are all connected and unfortunately they won't be disappearing anytime soon.

Here's an amazing fact. Last year marked the first time ever that U.S. imports of African crude oil surpassed shipments of oil from the Middle East. The trend is continuing in 2007; so far, three African countries (Nigeria, Angola, Algeria) account for 26% of crude oil imports, while three Middle Eastern countries (Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Kuwait) account for just 23%. Thanks to Doug Casey at 321 for that nugget.

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