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Here are some news stories and articles which might be of interest to you. I've posted the opening section, and if you want to read more, you can click on "Read the whole article" to go to the original item. You'll find a variety of things here -- current news, political analysis, opinion pieces, articles about religion -- things I've happened to read and want to share with you. It's your Reading Room, so take your time. Browse. You're certain to find something you'll want to read.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Obama’s Theorems

The people don’t believe any more.

by Victor Davis Hanson

Part of the problem with the president’s agenda is that it is predicated on a number of radical ideas that are asserted, rather than proven. His experts and the elites assure us of a reality that most people in their own more mundane lives have not found to be true. In short, they may find Obama personally engaging, but they no longer believe what he says.

Take cap-and-trade legislation. We are asked to endanger an already-weak U.S. economy with a series of incentives and punishments to discourage the use of carbon-based fuels, with which — whether shale, natural gas, coal, or petroleum — America is rather well endowed.

A number of eminent scientists, along with environmental advocates such as Mr. Gore, lecture us that global warming as a manmade phenomenon is unimpeachable. But this month Americans are shivering through one of the coldest Octobers in memory, whether in Idaho, Colorado, or Michigan. They understand that over the last decade average global temperatures did not spike; in fact, they slightly decreased.

We are advised, of course, to look at larger trends to grasp the full extent of the looming disaster. But again, that is a more abstract proposition. And it is not one that is enhanced by elite condescension. In the here and now, the weather seems cooler, and it has for a decade. Voters, unless convinced otherwise, are not about to invest trillions on a theorem.

If borrowing money is the right way to get us out of the recession, the public wants to know why we do not call it “borrowing,” rather than “stimulus.” If well over a trillion dollars in new debt was supposedly essential to restarting the economy, why not three, four, or five trillion more to make recovery a sure thing? And if Americans know from first-hand experience that charging purchases on their credit cards is optional, quick, easy, and fun, but that paying them off is necessary, slow, difficult, and unpleasant, why would they think their government’s charges would be any different?

We are in a terrible energy crisis, we are told: Petroleum supplies have spiked, and we must immediately convert to mass transit, hybrids, biofuels, and electric cars. Such concern is wise, since oil is indeed a finite product. And while this recession has unexpectedly given us a reprieve from crippling oil prices, it is only a reprieve...    Read the whole article.

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Fr. Phillips is the founding pastor of Our Lady of the Atonement Catholic Church, the first Anglican Use parish, established on August 15, 1983. Not that there is any confusion, but he is on the left, shown in his younger, less gray-headed days.