November 16, 2005

Enervated Energy

Hatched by Dafydd

Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), the would-be Speaker of the House, has come out of her corner swinging. Alas, she seems as likely to hit the referee, the judges, and spectators in the first eleven rows as to hit her opponent, George W. Bush. (Via Daniel Weintraub's Bee-blog, California Insider.)

She gave a speech today designed to "develop an agenda that will help the Democratic Party retake power in the House" and "silence critics, even within her own party, who say she and Senate Democratic leader Harry Reid of Nevada haven't done enough to give disgruntled voters a reason to turn away from Republicans." In a hard-hitting, name-taking, prisoner-rejecting, high-ground-staking, high stakes, low-comedy departure from the Democratic norm -- we don't need no steekin' platform! -- she has drawn a line in the sand, laid down the law, put up or shut up, put her foot down, and grabbed the bull by the tail to look the facts in the face.

She has come out in favor of (wait for it) -- technology!

(Whatever happened to the good old days, when everybody opposed technology?)

But this is technology with a difference, the difference being Ludditism. Nancy Pelosi demands more energy, but only from sources proven ineffective at producing any:

"We should be spending America's energy dollars in the Midwest, not the Middle East," Pelosi is scheduled to say, proposing a crash federal research program into "high-risk, high-reward, revolutionary energy technologies."

"Our goal is energy independence, and we intend to achieve it within 10 years," she adds.

Those technologies include plant-based fuels such as ethanol and new engines for hybrids and biodiesel vehicles. [Emphasis added]

Not a word about drilling in ANWR, in the Gulf of Mexico, off the West Coast; shale oil; building more refineries; high-temp ceramic engines; or even nuclear power. Those are bad technologies; you can tell them from the good variety because the bad actually stand a chance of producing real energy.

Pelosi says the United States, the Internet's birthplace, has fallen behind other countries in broadband penetration, which she says threatens the country's economy. She wants to double federal funding to bring broadband into more American homes, businesses and schools, give businesses a tax credit for bringing such access to rural or other underserved areas and promote wireless Internet access.

Yes, we certainly can't trust the market to protect the constitutional right to high-speed broadband internet connectivity for all Americans; just think, there are some people still muddling along with dial-up! It's an emergency; the federal government must intervene quickly, before we lose another entire generation to slow surfing.

Pelosi also wants to boost the number of scientists, engineers and mathematicians in America by 100,000 over the next four years by providing more scholarships and other financial aid to students. In 2004, America graduated 70,000 engineers, while China turned out 10 times as many.

Ah -- and if this doesn't work to bridge that technological gap, she can simply use the same techniques as China: decide in advance how many engineers you want to graduate this year and simply order that many students to switch majors to engineering.

Folks, I rib you not, this is the upcoming Democratic party platform: Vote Democrat -- we're the Age of Aquarius, while they're the stodgy, old Picean plesiosaurs! Nancy Pelosi's response to the Global War on Terrorism? Ethanol! Imminent collapse of Medicare/Medicaid and Social Security? Broadband! The battle to protect traditional marriage? More state-subsidized engineers!

Sometimes you look at her and wonder. Other times, you just look.

Hatched by Dafydd on this day, November 16, 2005, at the time of 2:18 AM

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