Saturday, January 31, 2009

SAMBLA gets wierder still

Could it get any wierder? It is hard to keep up with this circus.

Beau Breedlove has been offered a nude photo op in an LA gay magazine. Sam Adams accused John Vezina of raping Breedlove. Sam Adams also said Bob Ball was "vulnerable" on the issue of sex with underage boys. Mark Wiener told Sam Adams he was a "F***ing moron." Beau Breedlove's lawyer, Charlie Hinkle, also represents the Oregonian on first amendment issues. Sam Adams' current boyfriend is Oregonian reporter Peter Zuckerman.

Further, According to KATU, a close friend of Beau Breedlove says he DID have sex with Sam Adams before he was 18. According to Willamette Week, the reason Adams' spokesperson, Wade Nkruma resigned is because Adams told his staff that he never had intimate contact with Breedlove before he was 18, and then Breedlove claimed they kissed twice when he was 17. According to The Funny Paper, Randy Leonard no longer trusts Adams.

Why hasn't Leonard called for Adams to resign? He's done everything but that already, so what is he waiting for? You don't go public with a statement that you don't trust a colleague if you plan on working together in the future, so why not push Adams off the ledge he's tried to stay on for the last two weeks?

Adams resigns if his fellow commissioners tell him to. Why won't they step up? The longer they try to avoid it, the weaker they look and the more they themselves lose credibility. I mean really - Sam Adams CONTINUES to lie, to his staff, to the media and to his colleagues, and they sit silent. As far as I know, Amanda Fritz and Dan Saltzman are still defending/supporting Adams.

Why? What leverage does Adams have that is preventing them from tossing him overboard?

Friday, January 30, 2009

But did anyone teach them the economics?

In the "How We Live" section of The Funny Paper today, there's a story about a group of students in Hood River High School who spearheaded the installation of a wind turbine on school property. 

These kids, according to the story, have been fully indoctrinated in everything green:

 "To these teens and many of their generation, understanding and promoting alternative, renewable energy is a given. They want more recycling bins on school grounds and energetically embrace other green projects. Not to mention, they know they can play a bigger role for the environment by teaching their elders."

They got the money for the turbine from the Oregon Energy Trust, who agreed to fully fund the $25,000 installation and maintenance for the project. Now they have a turbine that feeds the grid a small amount of electricity. 

The story says the electricity produced by the turbine is 1.8 kilowatts. That, no doubt, is what it spits off when it is actually spinning, not an average of what it produces during any given year. But let's assume it is an average.

The value of that electricity at Oregon prices is about $1,261 a year.  Would you invest $25,000 to yield $1261 a year? Barely. That is about a 5% return - a 20 year payback - far less than any profit making enterprise would need to invest. 

Plus, the $25K doesn't include various costs such as land. 

So I am wondering whether, along with what these students are taught about alternative energy and sustainability, they are ever taught anything about ROI and economics. 

Any guesses?

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Kulongoski's legacy - your money

Be very, very afraid when a politician wants to use your money for HIS legacy. 

Front page story in The Funny Paper today about Kulongoski's "green legacy."  The Governor wants to put Oregon "on the front lines of what he firmly believes will be the next economic revolution: green energy."

Predictably, what the fawning article never asked, was what vast experience does the Governor have in the private sector that would position him to know what the next economic revolution would be?  Did he predict the transistor? The microprocessor? The internet? 

Just think of all the money we've wasted in Oregon on some politician's claim of the next big thing? Remember "creative services?"  The Portland Development Commission just knew this was going to be big, so they even remodeled an entire office building specifically outfitted for the needs of the creative service sector (or "cluster" in bureau-speak.) The building bled money from the get-go, so much so that the PDC had to occupy it themselves, just to stop the embarrassment.

Of course then there was the "Biotech" craze. Ten thousand new jobs were coming to Portland if we just spent billions on South Waterfront and OHSU. Both places are basically bankrupt now, and taxpayers are holding the bag. So far, ZERO biotech jobs were created. (Actually, some jobs did result, which went to Florida.)

So now our Governor says he just knows that the green economy is the next big thing. Why would we put one dime of our money on his vision? 

Of course he wants a heck of a lot more than a dime. Hundreds of millions of dollars to subsidize inefficient forms of energy production. A cap and trade system that will bleed tens of millions out of ratepayers' pockets to fund more of their green dreams. Mandates for "renewable energy" that drive up energy costs even further.

That is his vision, his legacy. And he pretends that it will create jobs! Oh, sure it will result in more people employed making windmills and solar panels. But far, far more people will lose jobs due to the higher energy costs in the rest of the economy.

But people like Ted Kulongoski don't have the frame of reference to understand this economic reality. A lifetime in the public sector, he literally doesn't understand wealth creation. 

But he does understand special interest politics, like all good liberal politicians. A system of energy taxes (Cap & Trade) and renewal energy mandates (25 by 25) and tax credits (BETC) will absolutely ensure that money will flow to all Kulongoski's environmental allies for years and years to come. 

And we all pay for it in higher taxes and energy costs. The net effect, of course, is that we are all very much the poorer, with a worse economy and fewer jobs. 

But the government class and their press-release publishers (The Funny Paper and the rest of the mainstream media) along with the environmental lobby will tell us for years what a success this all has been, and what a wonderful legacy Ted Kulongoski has built.

Have fun paying for it.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Great quote

From a George Will column today:

"There never is a moment when an open society that wants to remain such does not need the wisdom of Friedrich Hayek, the Nobel Prize-winning economist who said: "The curious task of economics is to demonstrate to men how little they really know about what they imagine they can design."

I sure do wish that the Oregon planning set understood the truth of this quote. Their hubris knows no bounds, so hell-bent they are on social engineering everything from housing, transportation and even climate.

The audacity of pork

I was down at the legislature today, and watched the Senate debate on the Oregon "stimulus" bill. It's the plan to borrow $180 million or so and use the funds for a laundry list of current spending plans.

The floor speech by Peter Courtney was classic. He's an impassioned speaker and gets pretty wound up when he wants to. He gave this stemwinder, talking about how so many Oregonians are suffering, losing jobs, anxious, and insecure. He said he would do whatever it takes to help them get jobs. He wouldn't stop at anything, so concerned he was about the plight of these poor folks. In fact, he said, his only regret is that the package isn't bigger.

I sat watching this exercise in political posturing, thinking: So you'd do anything you could, Peter Courtney? OK then, how about increasing logging on Oregon's public forests? How about fast tracking the LNG plant? How about allowing all those Measure 49 claims to go forward? How about allowing offshore drilling?

I guess he meant "I'd do anything that is acceptable to the enviros."

And then he retired to his newly remodeled offices, which cost the taxpayer $400,000 each to remodel.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

But they claim that capitalism has failed

Mona Charon has a great column today making the point that President Obama never had to learn the lessons so many liberals of the Great Society learned - that government programs often have worse unintended consequences than the benefits they are designed to bring.

And she also makes the best point I read all day:

"President Bush, along with a sloppy and incontinent Republican majority in Congress, managed the feat of discrediting free-market economics without ever practicing it."

I've heard so much lately that conservatism has failed. But Bush was never really a conservative. At least he was never a limited government conservative. 

I've grown very uncomfortable with the label "conservative" anyway, because it doesn't properly describe my own ideology, which I believe is very close to that of our founding fathers: Classical Liberalism.  This was the basis for our constitution. Government limited to protecting people from each other, and from enemies foreign. A guarantor of rights - not the 20th century notion of rights, but the proper definition  - a right is something that government cannot take from you, not something the government must do for  you.

President George Bush was not a classical liberal. And he has given the left the claim that free markets have failed. 

Running for cover from SAMBLA

One of the worst spectacles of SAMBLA  (Sam Adams Man-Boy Love Affair) has been the weak- kneed and mealy-mouthed reaction from the Mayor's colleagues on the city council.

First, Randy Leonard. While it is true that he has evolved his position to a place in which he is probably more critical of Adams than any other councillor, he still looks like a complete weenie. 

Randy was the primary attack dog when the rumor was surfaced by Bob Ball. He led point on destroying Ball's reputation for "smearing" Sam Adams. 

Once Adams admitted the true nature of the relationship, Randy stood by Sam saying "Sam didn't lie to me" because all Randy asked Sam was "did you have sex with an underaged person."  

Well, that one flew like a lead balloon, and Randy knew it. So he knew he had to stake out a slightly more defensible position, and Adams made it easy, because his own story kept changing and then it was revealed that he and the boy did play kissy face while the kid was underaged. 

But Randy still has not called for Adam's resignation, nor to my knowledge has has he apologized to Bob Ball, whose story now has been proven 100% accurate. So Sam Adams totally played Randy Leonard, used him to destroy a political foe whose story turned out to be true, and Randy is STILL not calling Sam out?

RANDY! Grow  a pair!

The others are just as bad. Nick Fish hasn't said much at all. Amanda Fritz is openly supporting Adams, as is Saltzman.  

Unbelievable! By their continuing to work with Sam Adams, these folks are condoning a 42 year old man's abuse of a 17 year old boy, and on city property! They are condoning lying to suborn an election. 

As far as I am concerned, NONE of these folks are worthy of our respect until and unless they call for Sam Adams resignation and refuse to sit with him on the council. 

Obama's first week

We better brace ourselves. Anyone who believes that free markets, capitalism and limited government are the best route to prosperity and freedom is in for a long four years. Ditto if you believe that government's #1 job is to protect the country. 

President Obama signed the executive order banning "enhanced interrogation" techniques. In the Washington Post, and the again today at National Review, Marc Thiessen details how this program directly prevented the U.S. from being hit again by terrorists, and how it stopped terror strikes in other countries.  

A blogger from WashPo took him to task for the claim, saying that there was no evidence the program ever stopped any attack. Thiessen responded, making the blogger look ridiculous. He gave a detailed account of precisely how and when waterboarding and other techniques led to information that stopped several terror plots.

So now we have announced to the world that we won't do this anymore. Prediction: After seven years of no terror strikes on U.S. soil, within two years we will be hit. 

The so-called "stimulus" package is speeding through congress. This is nothing but a special interest payday much of which will not even be spent within two years. And the "tax cut" portion of it is not really a tax cut anyway. A lot of it is just another name for welfare - giving people checks who don't even pay taxes. 

And NONE of the tax cut is of a "supply-side" nature.  Just sending tax credit checks to people doesn't have much effect on the economy, because it doesn't change any incentives and it's not a permanent change in tax policy that people and businesses can rely upon and therefore change their behavior in response.  If you want the economy to grow, change the marginal incentive to make income. This "stimulus" package doesn't do this - it just doles out money we borrow from the next generation. 

The media reporting on the stimulus has been just horrendous. Last night I watched national network news and also Nightline (something I almost never do.) References to the stimulus package were repeatedly couched in terms such as "President Obama's plan to fix the economy." 

The reality: President Obama's plan to funnel hundreds of billions of dollars to Democrat constituencies using the current economic slump as cover.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

He's Staying!

This is going to be fun.

On my radio show today I tried to hide my glee. Oh all right, I'll stop lying. (Unlike Sam Adams.) I didn't try to hide my glee.

Honestly, this is going to be a fabulous circus. It has everything! Sex, lies, a criminal investigation, interest groups jockeying for position, politicians looking for cover, high priced lawyers - all the ingredients for a rock-em sock-em scandal! It promises to be quite a show, and to last a long time.

And the by-product is positive too. This will distract the City Council from its toxic agenda. Sam won't be able to lecture anyone on making the I-5 bridge "sustainable." Nothing will happen, which, with this crew, is good.

I still can't figure out why Randy Leonard isn't jumping up and down telling Sam Adams to take a hike. Adams played Leonard for the fool, used him as his attack dog against Bob Ball. Now it turns out Ball had it right. And Leonard hasn't turned his back on Adams?

The rest of the mealy-mouthers are hunkered down hoping the criminal investigation lets them not take a position. What a bunch of weenies! The stipulated facts of this case are plenty to end Sam Adams' career. The investigation can't make any of that better - it can only hurt Adams.

Fact: Adams lied because he figured if he fessed up, he would have lost. In the words of my co-host, Marc Abrams, he "suborned the election."

Fact: Adams enlisted Randy Leonard to destroy the reputation of a political rival.

Fact: Adams used a paid consultant to coach his boy-toy to lie to the media.

Fact: Adams was romantically interested in Breedlove when the kid was 17 years old, and met with him on more than one occasion prior to his turning 18. Breedlove says on two of those occasions, they made out. One of those time it was in the City Hall mens room.

I am SO looking forward to the next few months. Portland is circling the drain anyway. We might as well have fun with this in the meantime.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Yet another planning failure

In the Washington County section of The Funny Paper today there's a great article about another high profile planning failure - the "Washington Square Regional Center." 

For ten years, Metro has wanted the area around Washington Square to turn into one of their mixed-use transit-oriented development fantasies. The fantasy involved a "greenbelt of trails, mixed-use development featuring 200-foot office buildings and compact residential communities near the shopping center." 

Metro got Tigard to re-zone their part of the land to "regional center" designation. Beaverton lagged, and didn't do it for their territory. They were too busy with their own high profile failure-  the Beaverton Round.

So now, ten years after Metro designated the area to be a regional center, NONE of the type of development they fantasize about has happened. Oh they have all the excuses.... there wasn't the money to pay for the $200 million in infrastructure, city foot dragging - but nowhere no how do they ever suggest that perhaps one small reason why nobody has stepped up to build what Metro wants is because no enough people want to live in their little urban utopias.

Never, ever question the ideology. Despite the fact that NOT ONE of Metro's regional centers has worked out as planned. Despite the fact of several expensive and high profile failures where the planners expensive dreams were completely jettisoned - such as Cascade Station, the Beaverton Round, South Waterfront, Downtown Hillsboro. No, failure never causes these folks to question their assumptions. 

More ironic still was the fact that the nation's largest used car dealer, CarMax, wanted to develop a part of the Washington Square area to build a dealership. Nothing sends planners into a bigger tizzy than to see an automobile-oriented business try to use some of their precious regional center/transit-oriented land for a profit making enterprise.

Since Beaverton had never gotten around to re-zoning their part of the territory as "regional center," the existing zoning allowed a car lot. The application had to move forward. 

Which is another great illustration of how our land-use policies hurt the economy. Imagine! Here our economy is in tatters, and an out of state company wants to expand in Oregon. But all the planners can do is whine that the proposed enterprise doesn't fit the planners' goals for that real-estate.  The fact that nobody is interested in building what the planners want doesn't seem to matter to them.

Well, the planners are getting a respite, it appears. CarMax withdrew the application because of the economy. Now you can bet that Metro will pressure Beaverton to re-zone that land to "regional center" designation, so we can rest assured that the land will be underutilized for years longer. 

Will our local governments ever get out of the way? Don't count on it - the problem, you see, is NOT their ideology, it's that all of us regular folk aren't enlightened enough to live like they think we should.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Adams Protester!

I was surprised to see pictures of this guy on local blogs and newspapers, and then see him interviewed on network news tonight.

He's my brother-in-law! He married my sister several years ago. Lest anyone think there is anything remotely anti-gay about his motivation for staging a one-man protest at city hall, I can disabuse you of that notion.

Without going into details, I can tell you he has devoted significant personal possessions to assist lesbian couples have children. He is a caseworker in MultCo's criminal justice system.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Sam Adams, Scumbag

Or, I guess I should say: Mayor Scumbag.

Honestly, are the people of Portland going to accept this? I think this issue is a great bellweather for just how far Portland has sunk into the abyss. If Sam Adams is allowed to stay on as mayor, this city is done. Forever. 

Why do I say that? Look what this disgusting excuse for a man did:

1) He took advantage of a troubled young man who approached him for personal advice at a time of severe emotional stress, and had sex with him.  This is absolutely, 100%, completely wrong, and in and of itself should end his political career.  

2) When Bob Ball brought the story out in 2007, Sam Adams went on the offensive. He trashed Bob Ball publicly, said this was just a political smear by a would be rival, and went on to play the victim, saying that Ball's accusation played into the stereotype of gay men predating on younger men. 

How cynical can you get? Adams basically went all-in on the denial. It wasn't enough for him to just deny and try to get the story behind him, he used the story and his denial to get sympathy by playing the gay card.  And all the while, he knew that he WAS the stereotype of the disgusting gay predator. 

3) He ruined the reputation of Bob Ball. Just roadkill, I guess, on his path to election. 

4) He leveraged the sympathy he created in his denial into votes. Would he have been elected if he had told the truth? So his election is invalid.

5) It is still an open question whether Sam Adams really "waited" until Beau Breedlove was 18 before they had sex. How can we trust what he says? He is a confirmed liar.

There is one very positive aspect to this story, however. Randy Leonard has been confirmed as a buffoon. I mean really! He said "Sam Adams never lied to me." Huh? Randy says he never asked Sam if he had sex with Beau Breedlove, he only asked Sam if he had ever had sex with an underage person! As if when Sam Adams went public with his denial and trashing of Ball and playing the gay card, he was speaking to everyone in Portland except Randy Leonard!

OK Randy. We got it. Defend Sam to the end. 

I have a feeling that Sam Adams will survive this. He will be damaged, for sure. He will be a standing joke in the talk radio and blog world. But he probably survives.

A more ethical person would resign, but Sam Adams has shown us that his #1 priority is Sam Adams. He doesn't care who he destroys along the way. It is all about Sam. He will weather all the catcalls, because this is his life. He knows nothing other than a quest for power. 

And Portland will sink further into the abyss. 

Monday, January 19, 2009

Our Mayor is a child molester?

Wow. Nigel got him to confess. Nigel KNEW Adams was lying - I talked to him personally about it months ago. I even helped chase down some leads that Nigel thought might confirm it, since Beau Breedlove worked as a legislative aide in Rep. Kim Thatcher's office.

More on this later. Will Adams resign? He blatantly lied to the public, got elected, and now two weeks after taking the oath we know he is just like Goldschmidt. A child molesting scumbag liar.

Update 5:11 PM:
Oregonlive is reporting that although Sam Adams mentored this kid when he was 17, they didn't start having sex until he was 18. I don't buy it. He is a confirmed liar, and why would he not lie about this, the most damaging aspect of the story?

Plus - he was the kid's MENTOR, for God's sake! And he starts having sex with him? 


Indoctrinating Education Leaders in Environmental Extremism

You gotta love Portland State University's school of education. The biggest collection of left wing clowns in town. 

They have a masters degree program called "Leadership in Ecology, Culture and Learning." Before I even start, let's just take a few moments and gaze in awe at this wonderful name.  What would it mean to be a "leader" in "ecology, culture and learning?" Wouldn't you be embarrassed to be at a cocktail party and tell people that you had a masters degree in Leadership in Ecology, Culture and Learning?

Isn't it kinda scary that apparently some people AREN'T embarrassed? And these folks are teaching our kids somewhere in some public school?

Well, take a look at some of the courses in this program.  

ELP 410/510: Ecology and Social Justice (4) 
ELP 410/510Garden-Based Education Research (4) 
ELP 410/510: Global Indigenous Cultures: Journey into Biocultural Diversities (4) 
ELP 410/510: Learning Gardens and Sustainability (4) 
ELP 410/510: LECL Naturalist Mentoring (2-4) 
ELP 410/510Nonviolence and Gandhi's Educational Philosophy (4) 
ELP 410/510: Permaculture and Whole Systems Design I (4) 
ELP 410/510: Permaculture and Whole Systems Design II (4) 
ELP 431U: Gandhi, Zapata and Topics in New Agrarianism (4) 
ELP 448U: Introduction to Global Political Ecology (4) 
ELP 449U: Spiritual Leadership (4) 
ELP 450U: Introduction to Leadership for Sustainability (4) 
ELP 501: Theory and Practice of Sustainability (1-4) 
ELP 503: LECL Thesis/ELP 506: LECL Culminating Project (2)
ELP 510: Ecological Education in K-8 School (4) 
ELP 510: Urban Education Farm: Food Policy, Curriculum Design, and Action! (1-4) 
ELP 516/616: Collaborative Ethnographic Research Methods (4) 
ELP 517/617: Ecological and Cultural Foundations of Learning (4) 
ELP 519: Sustainability Education (4) 
ELP 548: Advanced Global Political Ecology (4) 
ELP 550: Leadership for Sustainability (4) 

This is a masters degree in EDUCATION program! I promise - I didn't cherry pick only the most outrageous sounding courses. I just copied EVERY course listed in the program. For an even better laugh, go read some of the course summaries that describe these important and worthwhile courses. Here is the description of the first course:

ELP 410/510: Ecology and Social Justice (4) What have social classes, gender, ethnic and race relations got to do with ecology  in the greater Portland area and North America? Are there various types of environmentalisms depending upon how people concerned are situated in a particular culture of habitat and “relations of ruling? This course addresses these questions within the rubric of Earth Democracy, while expanding democracy to include intra and intergenerational democracy as well as inter-species democracy, intercultural democracy and inter-economic systems democracy. While intercultural democracy seeks equal recognition and respect for all bio-cultural diversities, inter-economic systems democracy seeks mutually beneficial exchange between producers and consumers, industry and agriculture, and rural and urban livelihoods.

Inter-species democracy? Again, I am not cherry picking. This is the very first course listed - pretty much each and every one of them has a course description which is just laughable. They actually have Perfessers who teach this crap!

Keep this in mind next time they whine about not having enough money. 

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Write your own lines, Kari Chisolm!

Steve Schopp alerted me to this.

Over at BlueOregon, Kari Chisolm wrote a post about Congressman Greg Walden being appointed as the ranking Republican member on the Oversight and Investigation Subcommittee of the House Energy and Commerce Committee.

He finds it ironic since Walden was chair of the audit committee of the NRCC when a fake audit report covered up a missing million bucks. And his tag line:

"In Republican circles, there ain't nothing that succeeds like total, epic failure."

Hey! Kari! Write your own stuff!

Anyone who knows me has heard me say the same exact thing as a motto for Oregon. I've said it many times on the air, and a simple search of my blog shows the times I have written it down here.


Saturday, January 17, 2009

Steve Novick subs for Marc Abrams tomorrow

Steve Novick, who darn near beat Jeff Merkley in the Democrat primary for U.S. Senate (and who I said all along would have given Gordon Smith more trouble in the general election than Merkley) is going to substitute for Marc Abrams tomorrow on Kremer & Abrams (KXL AM 750 from 9:00-11:00.)

If you watched the Novick/Merkley race, you saw Novick become something of a phenomenon. A very different kind of candidate, to be sure. I think he will be great on the radio, because he's unabashed in his lefty views and willing to talk/argue/disagree without taking things personally.

Hope you tune in. It's webcast at

Learning the wrong lesson

In 2002, Metro decided that the best place to expand the urban growth boundary in order to meet its statutorily required 20 year inventory of housing land, was as far away from the major job center as possible. So they brought thousands of acres in and around Damascus into the boundary.

They were so excited. Finally, they had a blank slate upon which they could draw their urban village utopia. They started plans for 50,000 new residents, fully in their blueprint of "new-urbanism:" bike paths, mixed use commercial centers, small lots crammed with townhouses - we've all seen the drill.

Some folks in Damascus went along, seeing a big payday ahead when they sold their land. But most of the good folks in Damascus saw it for what it was: a pig in a poke. Not only was there no way in Hell that there would ever be enough money to build out the necessary infrastructure for a new city of 50,000 people (which means all their plans would sit idle, much like the Beaverton Round, the Cascade Station, and other new-urbanist wet dreams) but the folks in Damascus didn't want their little burgh to be turned into what the Metro planners wanted in the first place.

So they passed a couple local initiatives which pretty much stopped Metro in its tracks. Now, seven years later, Metro has finally admitted defeat.

But predictably, they are taking precisely the wrong lesson from that defeat.

The lesson they SHOULD learn is that people don't share their new-urban vision. For the most part, people don't want to live that way. They want back yards and cul-de-sacs, and they want to use their car to move around as they please.

But why would Metro learn that lesson now? It's not as if this is the first spectacular failure of one of their new urbanist projects. After all, when others don't share your religion, it is only because they haven't had sufficient exposure to your gospel. The fault isn't with the religion.

David Bragdon, Metro council president, had this to say about the fiasco in Damascus:

"I think this council will look very skeptically at further urban growth boundary expansions. The reality is that we need to be more efficient with land already inside the boundary."

In other words: "Fine. If you don't bend over and let us force our plans on you when we expand the boundary, we are just gunna pile everyone inside the current boundary."

It would be too much to hope for, I guess, that one of these dolts might think:

"Hey, maybe this model we all think is so cool isn't what the folks we are elected to represent actually want. Maybe we should learn from our many expensive failures, because it seems every time we try to build one of these new urban villages, it ends up a financial disaster. Perhaps what we should do is expand the urban growth boundary, and allow the local areas to decide how they want to allow growth on it."

No, don't worry. I am NOT that naive. I know that people like Peter Bragdon and Carl Hosticka and all the other central planning social engineer utopians do not consider it their job to represent the people who elected them. Their job is to establish their religion, and force it on their subjects regardless of whether they want it.

So it was absolutely predictable that the takeaway from the Peter Bragdon types would be that we can't expand the urban growth boundary. That lesson serves his agenda.

An agenda that is increasingly being exposed as one that is ruining what was once a terrifically functioning metropolitan area.

Friday, January 16, 2009

John Kroger is going to be worse than we thought

Our new Attorney General John Kroger is going to be a nightmare. Many of my friends in the conservative movement supported him, and I told them all at the time that they would rue the day.  

I realize they did it because of Greg MacPherson's work to get Measure 37 repealed by Measure 49. I get that. But Kroger is going to do tremendous harm to what's left of our economy  through his environmental activism. He can't wait to make headlines. 

Just this week he spoke at the anti-LNG rally on the capitol steps along with all the enviro-loonies. Word is the governor's office is steamed that he would basically take sides as an advocate when Kroger's office will be very involved is certain aspects of the issue. For one, the governor has indicated he will be suing FERC for its approval of the Bradford Landing LNG site license. Guess who litigates the suit on "behalf" of the state? Kroger.

How can Kroger, in his role of AG, fairly apply the law concerning the LNG proposal when he has already publicly chosen sides on the issue? He can't. 

Word also has it that Kroger marched into the Guv's office last week and demanded that he get $100 million more in the AG's budget for his enforcement division. The Guv reportedly told him to go jump. He explained the facts of life to him: The AG's office is UNDERNEATH the governor, and does not have autonomous budgeting authority. The AG's budget was proposed by Hardy Meyers, and was rolled into the Governor's budget proposal. Not only was this not the right time to go adding ANY amount to the AG budget-  but the fact is that by the time the May re-forecast is revealed, it is likely that the AG budget will face CUTS from the guv's current budget, not a $100 million increase.

And Kroger left with his tail between his Napolean-length legs. 

I'm telling you - this guy is going to be a nightmare.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Here comes Cap & Trade

The governor dropped the Cap & Trade bill - Senate Bill 80. 

It is a nightmare, just as expected. The bill itself is actually not all that long, despite the very complex nature of what it proposes to do. And that, too is a big problem.

Why is that a problem? Because what the bill does is essentially proclaim that there will be a Cap & Trade system to reduce Oregon's carbon dioxide emissions, and empowers the Environmental Quality Commission to design it and implement it by rule. 

So we will have a new, unprecedented level of power in an unaccountable bureaucracy. You think the legislature and the lawmaking process is hard to influence? Try stopping an administrative rule promulgated by a team of bureaucrats.  I've been through it many times.

Why will this be so bad for Oregon? It will be hugely expensive, directly in a higher cost of energy (with the money going both to the government and to large energy companies who have the political clout to game the system) and in reduced economic growth rates in Oregon. 

They are essentially calling for a 40% reduction in CO2 emissions by the year 2020. Which basically means they want Oregon to use 40% less energy. The easy (and only technologically proven) way to make that happen is to be 40% less productive than we are now. 

Sounds great. 

If you want to really get angry, go take a look at the blizzard of planning documents  concocted by the Western Climate Initiative, which is the multi-state group behind this whole thing.  Read some of those design drafts to get a sense of the breathtaking scale and scope of the intrusive bureaucracy they plan to foist on us. 

And the whole point is to bleed money out of the economy in the form of a hidden energy tax, so the politicians can use it for all their sustainability initiatives. 

I will be writing about this issue a lot in the weeks to come, because we can absolutely count on the newspapers in Oregon not bringing a lot of the truth about this to light. So stay tuned - this could be the most harmful initiative ever to come out of our government class in Oregon.

Monday, January 12, 2009

The Funny Paper Today

The Funny Paper was in rare form today. One article after another was laugh out loud funny - both the news pages and the editorial section.

Starting with the front page, where there's a big article on the controversy over math instruction. For years, the educrats have been trying to shove down the throats of parents and children their ridiculous theories on how kids learn math. When parents see the stupid stuff their kids are doing (group projects, math journals, spending hours on trivial problems) they go crazy. The educrats hem and haw, try to run out the clock. The persistant parents win.

Well, the article today tried to put the best face on it for the education establishment. The real story is that parents resent their kids being used as guinea pigs as the educrats try once again to pretend they have this new approach to learning (which is nothing more than the same old bullshit John Dewey "constructivism" packaged in some other shiny box) but the parents know better.

Johnny can't multiply 9 times 5 in the fourth grade, but the educrats yammer on about 'conceptual understanding."

This battle has been fought on so many fronts all over the nation, and there's a current battle brewing in Tualatin. Same story.

Then over to the Op-ed page, where there's a plaintive cry for the departure of Gil Kelly, Portland's planning director. We learn that partly because of Kelly's efforts, Portland is "among the best planned cities in the world."

Give me a break! They make a point of saying that without Kelly's efforts, South Waterfront would not have happened! THAT is their example of good planning? Wow!

Then on the other side of the page we have Ryan Deckert, along with some dude on the State Board of Higher Education, telling us how Oregon is going to have the "greenest" universities in the country by spending the governor's planned $1 billion in capital funds on "sustainable" buildings. He celebrates the fact that Oregon requires that any public building built after 2006 must have at least a silver LEED rating.

Which of course means we buy far less for our money in order to save a small amount of energy. And that is pretty much the definition of "sustainability" - spending a lot of money to save a teeny bit of energy.

It's the Oregon way - wasting taxpayer money to support the political agenda of the elites in charge. With guys like Ryan Deckert pretending to be a business leader!

We are so screwed.

First day of the legislature

I've been avoiding posting anything on my blog for a month for some reason. Not sure why, but every time I thought about posting something, I just didn't do it. I'm a pretty unreliable blogger, I guess.

The 2009 legislative session started today, and it is going to be a doozy. I heard some of the governor's state of the state speech, and it is obvious that not only does he have no clue what to do to bring Oregon out of this deep recession, but that the things he plans to do will make things worse than they otherwise would be.

He said we had to have the courage to raise revenue, even though times are tough. He asked: "If not now, then when?" How about never! We should NEVER increase the burden of government on the taxpayers. I thought his question was very funny, because clearly his answer is "Always!" he has proposed tax increases at every single turn, in good times and bad.

The most irritating part of his speech was when he talked about Oregon's new economy, how we are the unquestioned national leader in sustainability, and how that will lead us out of this recession. This is just fantasy.

The only reason we are on the map for "sustainability" is because the government is throwing dollars at every goofy alternative energy project and ridiculous energy saving scheme they can subsidize. It's wasted money. So his plan to get us out of the recession is to raise taxes and then waste the money. Yeah, that'll work.

And his biggest money wasting scheme will be coming soon, when he unveils his legacy legislation - the 'Cap & Trade' plan. I'll have much much more on this later, but it is basically a way to drive up the cost of energy and use the money extracted from energy users to fund all their sustainability projects.

It is a job killer. Why would we make energy more expensive in the middle of a deep recession?

And this is just the first day. Oh my.