Why the title?

"Pioneers take the arrows"

Oh, wait. I should be upbeat and taking arrows doesn't sound like an upbeat thing to say.

So, let me amend that statement.

It was courage and vision that led the pioneers to leave behind a comfortable, settled life and trek West to begin a new life in a new place. Many of those from the East that went West found a strength within themselves that they didn't see while they were in their old life. Instead of being one of those that just kind of went along with the others in the old life, they became leaders and visionaries in their new lives.

The sentiments of that last paragraph come from a favorite author, Louis L'Amour, in many of his books. So, I can't really say that it is an original thought from me. However, what he said is truthful.

Welcome to being a pioneer. Look ahead and ignore the "barking dogs" that give you negative opinions and comments. Louis L'Amour also spoke of the barking dogs.

In some of his stories, it was usually a father or older man telling a young boy how it was that when the Westward bound Conestoga wagons rolled through towns, the dogs came out to bark at them. His character then told the young listener that the barking didn't stop the wagons from going on to their destinations.

Following the advice of the Louis L'Amour characters, may we all forge ahead with our plans, after carefully considering all consequences and leave the "barkers" behind.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Comments for a Forum Post

On RV Dreams forum, under the heading of “Money Stuff” is a thread dealing with prices and government’s contribution to them, along with discussions about oil exploration, government entities, just to name a few of the topics discussed. The tread title was “Go Go Juice On the Rise.”

I started to post some more comments, but by the time I was through, those comments ran too long for me to feel comfortable with it being on the RV Dreams forum. I have no real understanding about how text and photos contribute to “bandwidth” but I do suspect that photos would be a bigger “bandwidth hog.” So, I’ve decided to post my comments here and have posted on the forum thread that I would make my comments on my blog instead of at RV Dreams’.

Following are those comments:

Just a few more comments, if I may.  Text within quotation marks will be comments from others.

"I think the EPA, energy, and education depts need to be stronger.  I think the last thing we need to do is destroy more of our country's amazing wild spaces looking for oil."

Even the oil companies know that not all areas of the United States are conducive to exploring for oil.  However the EPA has done so much harm to American citizens and businesses with regulations that have been 'demanded' by environmental groups, some of whom have certainly been proven wrong in some of their claims.  Their regulations can affect anyone.  There have been incidents where individuals, including homeowners, cannot do with their property as they wish.  In the past there were instances of individuals who had property that tended to hold rainwater for a period of time after a rain.  They found themselves suddenly regulated by the EPA because the EPA declared the individuals’ property as 'wetland'.  Also, I would like to know how much the EPA is involved with the acquisition of land for the federal government.

The Energy department was started when the U.S. was depending on foreign sources for less than 30% to 35% of our oil.  It was started with a mandate to diminish that dependence, but instead, our dependence on foreign oil is now more than double the initial percentage.  I would suggest that if an agency can’t accomplish its mandate, it shouldn’t exist anymore.

What has happened to the education of our students since the advent of the federal Education department?  Having been a school board member, I have seen first-hand the diminishing levels of education of our nation's children due to Education department demands.  How many young people can count back change?  What classes are no longer taught but our schools teach diversity studies and sex education and even hand out condoms?  Are any schools still teaching Home Economics?  Plus, federal dollars handed out to the schools also tend to come with regulations and demands as to what those schools can do and teach.

I am a serious, amateur photographer and formerly involved with several industries, including agriculture.  I fully understand the need for conservation of our resources and dearly love photographing nature's beauty and its wildlife.  So, it isn't that I advocate exploiting our country.

"I also agree on the solar and wind.  If it was of any value at all, it wouldn't need to be subsidized.   (This part was an original comment of mine and the answer to it is just below.)

While your agreeing is a fact, your next sentence is an opinion.  New technologies often require subsidizing, and it is definitely in our interest to do so (my opinion   Besides we subsidize the oil and gas companies!  At a time when the 5 most profitable companies in the world are oil and gas companies.  Unless you believe tax cuts don't equal subsidies.  I sure do."

In regards to the last part of my original comment, I should clarify my thinking.  If the advocates of a new technology can convince others of the value of their technology, then there is the opportunity for private sources to help fund those technologies without using the taxpayer's dollars.  If they can't convince them, then they should perfect their technology, not ask the government to fund them.  A multi-millionaire by the name of T. Boone Pickens was strongly advocating wind generated energy, but now he isn't.  Originally, as long as he could be partially funded by the government with subsidies, he was willing to build wind generation facilities.  Now, he has stopped because he recognizes that natural gas is still cheaper and the consumers don’t want to pay extra for wind generated power.

I remember a few years ago at the Oklahoma State Fair in Oklahoma City there was a booth where one of the electric companies (involved with generating with wind) was asking people to sign up for a program where their personal energy would come from wind generation.  Upon questioning them, it was found out that if one signed up, one paid higher rates for that energy.  Plus, their energy was still coming in on the very same transmission lines that natural gas or coal fired generated electricity used.  Sorry, but I consider that as a flim-flam scheme, even though there were those that thought “green energy” was what they wanted to be a part of.

As for tax cuts being subsidies, it was the companies and the individuals who first earned the money.  If anyone is REALLY being subsidized, it is the government.  Other than hydro-electric generation plants that are owned by the government, no other entity that I can think of makes a profit for the government.  Government has proven over and over that they aren't capable of understanding how to profitably operating any business.  I currently work for a government agency and I see first-hand how few people really know truly good management principles.

There was another part of the forum comments that dealt with the differences in various categories that have come about within a period from January 2009 to “Today”. Since it was sort of lengthy and was printed as sort of a “table”, I don’t think it would fit within the margins of my blog pages and look right.  While I have a tendency to want to believe the data presented, I've not yet researched it to find out for sure.  I'm thus not inclined to claim that those changes occurred because of political reasons and actions.

I apologize for any misunderstanding I may have caused anyone with this blog post and the posts on the RV Dreams forums.  I also apologize for any feeling of this being a rather fragmented post.  Hopefully, I won’t be tempted in the future to get strange with the posts.

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