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Simplify Political Campaigns

U.S campaigns are too complex and unfair for everyone to get a chance to serve in office. Campaigns are corrupt and driven by special interests. All these things can be changed by simplifying campaigns.

 

These are the major goals:

1)      Reducing campaign costs.

2)      Eliminate misinformation.

3)      Simplify who can be a candidate and how they register.

4)      Restrict the type of ads that can be run.

 

Candidates should not play the media. They should be required to announce two years in advance if they are going to run for office. This would give all voters plenty of time to find out more about the person. Also, it will eliminate all the speculation and media hype about whether or not someone is planning to run. This will make politicians more sober and thoughtful about the future, which is an important quality of a lawmaker.

 

A simple filing system online should be used to register to run for office. Each person running for office will have a free website that they can easily use to display their positions and record on issues. All basic issues will be covered, and voters can pull up profiles and comparisons of each candidate. A voter can also create a voter profile and compare each candidate with their own positions on issues. If a voter is undecided, then they can read a candidates blog, audio feed or videos that are accessible via their profile.

 

Gothic Green Blogs:

http://stockevaluationsbygothicgreen.blogspot.com Stock Evaluations by Gothic Green

http://greenbusiness.livejournal.com Gothic Green Business Journal

http://artistandcollectors.blogsot.com Art Blog

www.fortheloveofhistory.info History Blog

www.battleforvictory.info The Battle for Victory: Fiction Blog

http://sustainablecentralflorida.blogspot.com Sustainable Design of Central Florida

www.gothicgreensecurity.info Security Officer Training Blog

 

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A New Generation of Politics

The vision of the 20th century lead the U.S. to dominant power, but created a vacuum that requires the U.S. to adopt a new approach to politics. The Cold War ended, but only served to prove that communism was not able to win. It did not prove that capitalism was the pinnacle of human achievement. That point of view was basically a baby boomer’s perspective.

 The new generation of politics needs a new generation of leaders. The baby boomers cannot grasp the fact that times have changed. Generation X must now stand up and take command of the helm. Generation Y should also be ready to take action.

 

Generation X and Y understand that the biggest issues confronting the U.S. are environmental issues and the rights of people over corporations and special interests. Most Generation X and Y are more open to people of all races and origins whereas the Baby Boomers are most offended by other races and cultures. Most of the New Generation has a more rational view of issues like same sex marriage and abortion, but the Baby Boomers are still polarized. Most of the New Generation is not concerned about socialism versus capitalism.

 

In short, new generation of politics equals new generation of leaders. The Baby Boomers need to step down and stop trying to lead Generation X.  

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www.fortheloveofhistory.info History Blog

www.battleforvictory.info The Battle for Victory: Fiction Blog

http://sustainablecentralflorida.blogspot.com Sustainable Design of Central Florida

www.gothicgreensecurity.info Security Officer Training Blog

 

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Energy Efficiency

Currently, the entire world uses 400 quads of energy. One quad is equivalent to 2.93 trillion kilowatt hours. The United States uses the greatest amount at 100 quads of energy, yet it only has 5% of the world's population. This is important to understand because if the current world population of 6 billion people used the U.S. Standard then it would equal 2,000 quads of energy. That total means that with our current fossil fuel use the pollution would be five times greater than it is now. When the population grows to 9 billion people then the U.S. standard would require 3,000 quads of energy. The amount of pollution would be 7.5 times greater than now. Currently, the U.S. is the most inefficient place on Earth, because with proper conservation methods and appropriate technology the US can have a higher standard of living with only 15 quads of energy. The entire world can have the same high standard with only 300 quads of energy. All the while, pollution can be almost eliminated. This is all possible with today's technology. Eventually, breakthrough technologies may reduce energy needs to 30 quads for the entire world. 

The true renewables energy sources are solar, wind and water. These renewable energy technologies are already advanced and sound economical investments. As for hydrogen, it is an energy carrier rather than an energy source, so both renewable and fossil fuels can be used for the energy source. However, if fossil fuels are used then it still is an ecologically degrading approach to energy. The true renewables are the best.

Ethanol and biomass fuels have been touted as a renewable energy source, but in reality, they are not sound choices for large scale infrastructure. In fact they waste space and interfere with ecological diversity. According to the Earth Policy Institute, 'The conversion of ethanol from corn is one ton of corn = 39.4 bushels(1379 liters) = 110 gallons (418 liters) of ethanol. The grain it takes to fill a 25 gallon tank (95 liters) with ethanol just once will feed one person for a whole year. Converting the entire U.S. grain harvest to ethanol would satisfy only 16% of U.S. auto fuel needs.'

A few points to consider before converting plants or plant wastes to ethanol:
1) How will it affect the natural process of returning plant waste to nature to feed the soil?
2) Is there a more efficient way to provide fuel?
3) Can conservation reduce fuel needs in the first place?
4) How much land and infrastructure is actually needed to grow and make ethanol?
5) How will it affect natural diversity in the local ecosystems?
6) Can the land, labor, and infrastructure be better devoted to growing food to feed hungry people?

The next notion is converting trash to fuel. This is unsound because it violates the first rule of conservation. If you convert trash to fuel then you will always need a supply of raw resources to create new materials. Secondly, when converting trash to fuel, one unit of trash would have to produce at least one unit of energy equal to the amount of energy required to produce the original unit of material just to break even.

Fossil fuels degrade the environment in both extraction and use. Natural gas has been promoted lately as a sound source, but the facts weigh heavily against it. The U.S. has only an estimated 1532 trillion cubic feet (tcf) of reserves that are technically recoverable. The U.S. uses about 23.1 tcf per year. At that rate it will only last 66 years while it pollutes the environment. However, if the option of being dependent on it to replace foreign use of oil then the reserves will only last about 25 years. Likewise, oil shale, domestic oil, and coal all have serious environmental hazards. They are all limited in reserves because they are finite resources. None of the fossil fuels are sound energy sources given our current state of technology and knowledge. Nuclear energy has too many downfalls (toxic waste and storage, nuclear weapons, security and safety risks). It should rightly be called "Toxic Energy." Toxic energy is not green.

Websites:
http://www.energystar.gov
http://www.repoweramerica.org
http://www.aceee.org
http://www.clean-air.org
http://www.ases.org
http://www.awea.org
http://www.nrel.gov
http://www.eere.energy.gov
http://www.findsolar.com
http://www.goethermal.org
http://www.nrel.gov

http://www.nabcep.org
http://www.crest.org
http://www.seia.org
http://www.solarliving.org
http://www.energytaxincentives.org
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/energy_use_in_the_united_states


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Abolish Oil Drilling

Oil drilling leads to environmental ruin. The Gulf Oil Spill is just the latest and most visible incident. Oil creates pollution in its extraction, refining and use. Ultimately oil supplies will run out, but the environmental damage it causes in the meantime may exceed humanities’ capacity to restore the environment.

 

No one was prepared or capable of solving the Gulf Oil Spill before it did significant damage. This is a fact that no one can dispute. The mantra of “Drill baby drill” must stop, and we must abolish oil drilling and the use of oil. What will happen if oil dependence continues and a larger oil disaster happens? History proves that the oil incidents and their effects have gotten larger and worse, so why would any reasonable person believe that the future of oil drilling and use will differ?



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Energy Policy II: Toxic and Clean Energy


The endeavor in nuclear energy and technology is a dangerous business regardless if the purpose is for war or peace. The complexity and long term nature of toxic waste constitutes a threat which scientist can only theorize. The true hazards they pose cannot be understood, and currently, the only way to dispose of them is burying them. Burying toxic waste as a method of disposal is irresponsible. Nuclear energy is toxic energy, and must be treated as such.

 

 The coal and natural gas industry have been promoting their energy as clean energy, but they are spreading misinformation. Coal and natural gas are both resource intensive businesses and produce pollution on large scales. Coal, by its very nature, is dirty. Natural gas when compared to crude oil may appear clean, but the fact is they are different sides of the same coin.

 

The efforts to store pollution underground is used by the industry, but this policy of hiding waste underground does not address the basic fact that it still exists. There are consequences to this policy that will come to light eventually. Coal and natural gas are not clean, and the ads that the fossil fuel industry run need to stop.

 

Coal mining also produces polluted water and runoff which damages local ecosystems. Mine remediation does not restore the ecosystem at a deep level. It merely superficially cleans up an old mine. The mining operations also disrupt the natural state that would normally exist.

 

Clean energy is just a term that a dying industry has erected to buy them time in the face of change. Fossil fuels are not renewable and this is the hidden fact that clean energy tries to conceal.

Gothic Green Blogs:

www.gothicgreen.info Sustainable Concepts and Designs

http://greenbusiness.livejournal.com Gothic Green Business Journal

http://sustainablecentralflorida.blogspot.com Sustainable Designs of Central Florida

www.gothicgreensecurity.info The Discipline of Security

www.battleforvictory.info The Battle for Victory: Fiction Blog

www.fortheloveofhistory.info History Blog

 

Gothic Green Sites:

www.gothicgreen.net Green Social Niche

www.gothicgreen.biz Gothic Green Central

www.gothicgreen.org Gothic Green Politics

www.gothicgreen.us Gothic Green Art

www.gothicgreenrealestate.biz Gothic Green Real Estate

www.gothicgreensecurity.biz Gothic Green Security

www.gothicgreentransit.biz Gothic Green Transportation

 


Energy Policy

Energy policy is one of the most fundamental issues of the times. All good energy policy should be realistic. First, energy policy should be comprehensive. It should address energy efficiency, pollution control and reduction, sustaining resources, security, and economic factors. Energy policy must move the U.S. steadily away from fossil fuels and nuclear, and move rapidly towards renewable energy.

 
The shift in policy must reflect the growing awareness that resource use must be based on a sustainable level. It must reflect that levels of pollution have risen as a result of fossil fuels. It must reflect that burying fossil fuel and nuclear waste for future generations is a form of neglect and irresponsibility. It must reflect that we, as a society, have more knowledge than the people who initiated the industrial revolution. In other words, we know now that fossil fuels are dirty and unsustainable for widespread use.

 

The agenda of  “Drill baby drill” is absurd. Drilling for oil and natural gas as well as mining for coal is unsound policy when the sun and wind will come to us. The technology to harness and use wind, water, and solar energy for both day and night time use already exists and is being used.

 

If a policy of renewable energy use takes precedence over fossil and nuclear energy, then the U.S. can be more secure and financially stable. Ultimately, renewable energy will trump any dirty or dangerous energy sources.

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New Term Limits


There are many reasons to limit the terms politicians can spend in office, but an overview of the chief reasons will suffice to make the point clear:

1)      Eliminate lifetime politicians who maneuver for their self interest above the common good.

2)      Ensure voters retain political power over the politicians.

3)      Break up good old boy networks.

4)      Introduce fresh thinking into the political process.

5)      Engage younger adults.

6)      Motivate politicians to act rather than debate.

 

 The major problem of politicians who can move from office to office or remain in one position indefinitely is that they can manipulate the system. The system was originally conceived to create a fair and level playing field and to ensure the people were properly represented, but now politicians use bad political practices to get their way or, at least, prevent the other person from getting their way. These bad political practices are manifested as:

1)      Endless debates.

2)      Pass and repeal strategy.

3)      Stalling by adding on to bills to prevent a vote from passing.

4)      Polarizing an issue to prevent reasonable action.

 

Lifetime politicians stink of an oligarchy and are enemies of the people. Politicians should not be capable of serving more than a combined 16 years between all elected offices. The elimination of lifetime of long term politicians will return the power to the people. Anyone who opposes stricter term limits opposes democracy also.

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Trade Policy

Trade policy must be congruent with environmental policy. Generally, trade policy is debated in a vacuum which only considers economic matters, but the shift towards more sustainable designs in energy and efficiency must also be set in trade policy.

The GDP and amount of products exported versus imported have been largely debated since the Revolutionary War, but they ignore more in those debates than they include. In fact, trade policy must revolve around self sufficiency rather importing and exporting. Trade policy must shift to a sustainable trade policy that will support local and regional economies and ecosystems.

Trade policy must integrate reduced emissions into policies on exporting and importing. If a region can produce a product and use that product, then it should do that instead of exporting their product and then importing a similar product to use. Trade policy should reduce shipping distances rather than increase them, because it will be more energy efficient and support the local and regional economies. Importing and exporting should be frugal activities in trade rather than the basis of trade.

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The Ways of Governing


The government exists to govern the people and the resources of the people. It provides infrastructure, order and security for the people. If the government fails to govern the people, then the people will be incited to rebellion. If the government succeeds, then the people will remain pacified.

 

Governments can govern by three basic means:

1)      Expansion via annexation and/or territorial conquest.

2)      Expansion via increased freedoms and rights.

3)      Restriction via reduced freedoms and rights.

 

Most just and prosperous governments employ a combination of all three means, but will lean most towards increased freedoms and rights and annexation. Territorial conquest and reduced freedoms and rights are oppressive measures and should only be used sparingly.

 

A government that pacifies the people by directing discontent through territorial conquest will become imperialistic and oppress external people. A government that expands via annexation will be in accord with the people both internally and externally, because they both agree to terms for mutual benefit.

 

A government that expands freedoms and rights will gravitate towards a more natural form of government that is neither oppressive nor intrusive. A government that restricts rights and freedoms will gravitate towards a police type state.

 

All police states have these common attributes:

1)      Polarized politics.

2)      Sealing off boarders.

3)      Restrictions on travel.

4)      Torture and intense interrogations.

5)      Confining people without proof of guilt or charging them with crimes.

6)      Profiling and singling out certain groups of people.

7)      Eaves dropping and spying on citizens.

8)      Accumulation of wealth and power in a small group of peoples’ hands.

9)      Corrupt politicians and political policies.

 

Both imperialism and police states are similar in nature, and they are often used together to expand outwardly while oppressing inwardly. These states are doomed to failure though, because the people internally will not always concede and will ultimately rise up. The people externally affected will not be completely subdued, so that between these two circumstances a state must eventually meet failure.

 

An imperialistic state will maintain itself for a long time if it has advantages which its enemies cannot overcome, but it must also meet failure when it reaches a point of overextension. All governments that expand by conquest have a natural geographic limit which cannot be exceeded without peril. Once this overextension occurs, a government must change its method of governing or it will end in disaster. The worst policy is to become a police state, because the people in an imperialistic state have generally enjoyed the fruits of conquest and they are unaccustomed to oppressive measures.

 

The best policy for an imperialistic state is to adopt a method of annexation and increased freedoms and rights. The annexed will benefit from the size and general well being of the imperialistic state. The people internally will benefit by a buffer from growing external enemies. The extension of rights and freedoms will ensure prosperity and keep the people pacified and willing to improve infrastructure.


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Direct Action

Direct political action enhanced by indirect political action is the most potent form of political power. All too often though, people simply vote and nothing else. Their vote counts as a form of political action, but alone it proves to be too little. Voting needs to be reinforced by other direct action as well as indirect action.

Indirect actions and direct actions are very different. Direct action is any action in which the action has an immediate effect. Indirect actions are any actions that may influence a direct action, but may not have any effect because they rely on someone else taking the direct action.

Direct actions are under your complete control, but indirect actions are also important, because you can influence others who may have more direct power than you have. The key to developing the greatest indirect power is through direct power. It works by this means:

You lead by example. If you take a direct action, then you have developed your first base of power. Then if you support that direct power by more direct actions, then you have reinforced your base of power. Next, when you indirectly encourage others to do the same, then you have created a network of power. This network then supports your original power. The circuit is complete.

For example, if you support healthy food choices and organic farming, then you will vote for a politician that supports that also. Secondly, you will purchase healthy, organic food. Third, you will invest in organic food and farming. Fourth, you will write emails to your lawmakers to encourage organic farming. Fifth, you will protest unhealthy food choices. Sixth, you will not purchase unhealthy foods. All of these actions are either direct or indirect, but all of them have an If they are all combined together, then they represent true power.

On the other hand, often times people speak one way, but do another. They lack power and consistency. Ultimately, they will be defeated.