Monday, September 15, 2008

My Election Issues

I was planning on writing this post yesterday, but instead I spent the entire day watching football*. It was a great day filled with lots of meats, cheeses, cocktails and comebacks. Of course the Dolphins weren't one of teams that made any sort of comeback, but at least they forced Kurt Warner to throw 5 incompletions.

*The Vikings really snatched defeat from the jaws of victory. In a way it is depressing being around Vikings fans. They have been to 4 Super Bowls, but have 0 Super Bowl wins. They have seen one of the best passing attacks in the league when they had Cris Carter, Jake Reed, and Randy Moss. At the time they could throw any QB into the system and get a career year. Now they have one of the best rushing attacks in the league led by Adrian Peterson. The only problem is that never seem to have a complete team and because of that they have been running 2nd fiddle to the other upper Midwestern team in green and yellow for close to 50 years now.

Anyway, I have digressed into a sports rant, which is not the main reason for the post. The main reason for the post is to point out what my two most important issues are on for the 2008 election. I don't care about troopergate, lipstick jokes, teenage pregnancy, celebrities, Vietnam, experience, $400 glasses, or small town values. The majority of what I care about is what the next President is going to do in terms of our economy and our energy crisis. I care about what Thomas Friedman cares about in his "Making America Stupid" article from this past Sunday's NY Times. Along with that article, I would vote for nearly anyone who would enact what Gregg Easterbrook writes about in his TMQ football column under "Hold Your Horsepower." I encourage you to read the entire section on Horsepower (not the entire article unless you are a huge football fan), but here are two exerts in italics:

Like weight, horsepower depresses fuel economy. Simply knocking a third off the horsepower of new U.S. passenger vehicles would, in about a decade -- as efficient new vehicles replace wasteful old ones -- eliminate approximately the amount of oil the United States imports from the Middle East. Yes, it's that simple. Race cars need lots of horsepower; suburban family cars do not. Excessive horsepower causes the United States to be dependent on Middle East dictatorships, engages military commitments to those dictatorships, drives up the price of oil and pushes down the value of the dollar.


Federal legislation to regulate the horsepower of passenger vehicles, perhaps by establishing a power-to-weight standard, would reduce petroleum consumption, cut greenhouse gas emissions, lower U.S. oil imports, strengthen the dollar, and take some of the road-rage stress out of driving. So what are we waiting for? Whatever your answer, don't reply, "No one can tell me what I can drive." Courts consistently rule that vehicles using public roads may be regulated for public purposes, such as safety and energy efficiency. NASCAR races occur on private property -- there, horsepower is nobody's business. On public roads, horsepower is very much everybody's business. You'd be laughed at if you asserted a "right" to drive a locomotive down the freeway. Where is it written we have the "right" to operate an overpowered car that wastes oil and pollutes the sky?

If the United States started looking for new alternative energy sources then the hope would be that this would not only improve our energy dependence situation, but also as a huge side effect help our economy. There should be other steps taken to improve our economy and I am curious to hear from both candidates on their ideas. Anyway, as a warning to both candidates they should take my opinion seriously since I still might be able to vote in Bulter County, Ohio like I did back in 2004.

1 comment:

Mary said...

Great info on horespower. I'm glad you've picked your topic that will make or break your election selection. Do you agree with Obama's plan? Does he have one? (It sounded pretty vague on his acceptance speech.)