Barton is in line with the Republican Party

As everyone knows by now, Rep. Joe Barton apologized to BP for the $20b fund Obama strong armed from the company. The reason Obama was able to do this was because of the non-free market style economy the U.S. has which allows for the threat of greater, government-enforced penalties. Of course, the free market would be entirely flaccid in trying to wrest any real funds from BP. Thank goodness the U.S. has never had such an awful, awful system.

But Republicans and their sister Teabagging party wish we had a free market system. It sounds like liberty – despite the inevitability of monopolies, limited (if any) rights for workers, and no real enforcement of safety standards, retirement plans, or anything else that makes modern life comfortable. But it sure does sound swell. And that’s why they like it. It isn’t that it actually makes a majority of people happy or that it results in a strong economy. In fact, one of the few free market economies – Hong Kong – has only been able to experience any success because of the supporting structure of communist China. On their own, free markets will fail. If they don’t, the well-being of the people subjected to the whims of the few who become powerful will come under greater and greater strain over time.

But forget all that. It still sounds nice. Liberty! Boy, oh, boy! That’s why Rep. Barton made his apology.

What Obama managed to accomplish with BP runs counter to the free market principles the Republicans and Teabaggers support (until they need/want roads, schools, a place to put the homeless, a war on drugs, etc, etc). Rep. Barton is perfectly in line with the Republican Party on this one. Obviously they ran away screaming because of the political fallout of the situation, but if everything they’ve ever said was in the least sincere, then they hate that BP is being forced to pay.

Will they admit it when it doesn’t work?

There are religious groups planning prayer vigils in response to the Gulf of Mexico spill because they don’t know prayer doesn’t work.

The Wednesday event will be a sunset vigil that will last about 45 minutes, said Amanda Richardson Bacon, one of the organizers.

She said the Wednesday vigil is also intended as a community meeting and not a protest rally or national activity.

“Everyone is so angry and frustrated and we need to unite instead,” she said. “We’re all tired. We’re all frustrated. This is a chance to just turn it over to someone else for a minute.”

And when nothing happens, will they actually admit prayer is impotent? No. No, it will be God’s plan. I guess God being evil is okay sometimes, right?

The Gulf Coast

If the U.S. actually had a free market and if it actually followed the libertarian principles advocated by teabaggers*, then the government wouldn’t even be attempting to fix the Gulf of Mexico spill that is currently in the process of decimating marshland.

And that’s just one problem with ideology. Virtually no matter which one a person chooses, either consequences or intention will be largely ignored. Internet caricature feminism ignores intentions. Libertarianism says “Screw you!” to consequences; Egalitarianism does the same. Utilitarianism is the best at towing the line, but it still fails in many respects to what I think most people want in their ethics and morals. This consistency people seek so much tries to paint the world as black and white, and that just doesn’t work. The current crisis in the Gulf of Mexico would either be made worse or allowed to become far worse than it otherwise would if the U.S. applied an ideology to it.

*When I say teabaggers adhere to libertarian principles, I mean economic libertarian principles – and even then they aren’t that consistent (i.e., favoring publicly-funded roads). But I certainly do not mean social libertarian principles. They hate those.

Bigot gets fired

Jonathan I. Katz is a ridiculous excuse of a human being. Here’s what he says about gay people.

Unfortunately, the victims are not only those whose reckless behavior brought death on themselves. There are many completely innocent victims, too: hemophiliacs (a substantial fraction died as a result of contaminated clotting factor), recipients of contaminated transfusions, and their spouses and children, for AIDS can be transmitted heterosexually (in America, only infrequently) and congenitally. The icy road was lined with unsuspecting innocents, who never chose to ride a motorcycle. Guilt for their deaths is on the hands of the homosexuals and intravenous drug abusers who poisoned the blood supply. These people died so the sodomites could feel good about themselves.

What of those cursed with unnatural sexual desires? Must they forever suppress these desires? Yes, but this is hardly a unique fate. Almost everyone has desires which must be suppressed. Most men and women think adulterous thoughts fairly often, and find themselves attracted to members of the opposite sex to whom they are not married. Morality requires them to suppress these desires, and most do not commit adultery, though they feel lust in their hearts. Almost everyone, at one time or another, covets another’s property. They do not steal. Many people feel great anger or intense hatred at some time in their lives. They do not kill.

I am a homophobe, and proud.

This bigot was given a prominent position within the Obama Administration, working on the Gulf of Mexico oil spill. To compound Obama’s error, the guy is also a global warming denier to some extent. (“To some extent” = global warming is happening and is caused by people, but it’s somehow good for us.) A person such as this deserves to be shunned and pushed away from any prestigious position or stature – that should be obvious. In fact, it should have been obvious that such a person shouldn’t have been given any sort of distinguished label in the first place. Fortunately, at least hindsight is 20/20.

Dr. Chu has spoken with dozens of scientists and engineers as part of his work to help find solutions to stop the oil spill. Some of Professor Katz’s controversial writings have become a distraction from the critical work of addressing the oil spill. Professor Katz will no longer be involved in the Department’s efforts.

Good.