Monday, March 24, 2008
Poll on Public Willingness to Pay More for Gas to Fight Global Warming Covered by Fox
Posted by Amy Ridenour at 5:31 PM
Posted by Amy Ridenour at 5:31 PM
Posted by Amy Ridenour at 5:31 PM
Michigan Congressman Wants 50-Cent Tax Hike on Every Gallon of Gas_____
A Michigan congressman wants to put a 50-cent tax on every gallon of gasoline to try to cut back on Americans' consumption.
Polls show that a majority of Americans support policies that would reduce greenhouse gases. But when it comes to paying for it, it's a different story.
Rep. John Dingell, D-Mich., wants to help cut consumption with a gas tax but some don't agree with the idea, according to a new poll by the National Center for Public Policy Research.
The poll, scheduled to be released on Thursday, shows 48 percent don't support paying even a penny more, 28 percent would pay up to 50 cents more, 10 percent would pay more than 50 cents and 8 percent would pay more than a dollar.
"I don't want to pay more, I don't think anyone wants to," said Karen Deacon, a motorist.
"I think that wouldn't make any sense," said Frankie Hoe, a motorist. "Ugh ... who's making the money from all this and where is that money going? Is it going to go green? I don't see any green things anywhere."
The automobile is the nation's biggest polluter; Americans use more gas than the next 20 countries combined.
Some environmentalists and economists say pain at the pump may be bad for Americans, but good medicine for a sick planet.
But others say it wouldn't change much. Even if Americans abandoned their cars, global emissions would fall by less than one percent.
"A tax on gas is a way to reduce dependence on import oil, reduce traffic congrestion and reduce carbon emissions," said Lester Brown, president of the Earth Policy Institute.
The Earth Policy Institute proposes raising the gas tax 30 cents per gallon each year over a decade and offset with a reduction of income taxes, Brown said.
David Ridenour, vice president of the National Center for Public Policy Research, said the proposal wouldn't help long term.
"I think when you are talking about raising gas prices, there may be short-term reduction, put off vacations, but bottom line is over long term, that isn't going to have much of an effect," Ridenour said.
While Dingell's idea will likely lie dormant until after the 2008 election, the idea of carbon taxes is not. Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama and John McCain all support some type of system that either directly or indirectly will raise prices to penalize polluters.
Posted by Amy Ridenour at 11:34 PM
Tuesday, the U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments on the first major case dealing with the 2nd Amendment right for citizens to own a firearm in almost 70 years. Wednesday, readers of the Examiner newspaper chain were able to read Project 21 Fellow Deneen Borelli's comments on the case and gun rights in general.
Wrote Deneen, in part:...Besides violating the Second Amendment, D.C.'s gun ban is a violation of the fundamental rationale of law.To read the Examiner piece, click here. To read all of Deneen's commentary, click here. Project 21's press release on Tuesday's arguments can be found here.
In "The Law," noted political theorist Frederic Bastiat wrote: "It is evident, then, that the proper purpose of law is to use the power of its collective force to stop this fatal tendency to plunder instead of to work.
All the measures of the law should protect property and punish plunder." [But] D.C. promotes the opposite, effectively protecting the plunderer and punishing the property owner.
Looters, for example, know it's easier to steal another man's property than to earn their own.
When government can't perform a basic function like protection, it's naturally up to the citizens to defend their property.
The duty becomes harder when the property owner is hobbled by things like Washington's ban on gun ownership.
Posted by Amy Ridenour at 5:01 PM
National Center vice president David Ridenour will be a guest of talk show host Ron Smith on WBAL in Baltimore this afternoon (March 20) at approximately 3:45pm Eastern. David and Ron will discuss the National Center's new poll that indicates most people do not want to pay 50 cents or more extra for a gallon of gas in order to pay for the cost of proposed greenhouse gas emissions. The full press release on this poll can be read by clicking here.
You can listen to the interview live by going to the WBAL web site. Look for the "Listen Live" button on the left-hand side of the home page, just below the station logo.
Posted by Amy Ridenour at 2:13 PM
Americans Cool to Global Warming Action, New Poll Finds Nearly Half Wouldn't Be Willing to Pay Even a Penny More for Gasoline; Opposition to Taxes Especially Strong Among Minorities_____
For Release: March 20, 2008
Contact: David Almasi at (202) 543-4110 x11 or [email protected]
Washington, D.C.: Forty-eight percent of Americans are unwilling to spend even a penny more in gasoline taxes to help reduce U.S. greenhouse gas emissions, according to a new nationwide survey released today by the National Center for Public Policy Research.
The poll found just 18% of Americans are willing to pay 50 cents or more in additional taxes per gallon of gas to reduce greenhouse emissions. U.S. Representative John Dingell (D-MI), chairman of the Committee on Energy and Commerce, has called for a 50 cent per gallon increase in the gas tax.
According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, transportation accounts for 33% of the U.S.'s man-made carbon dioxide emissions. Over 60% of these emissions - or about 20% of all U.S. carbon dioxide emissions - result from burning gasoline in personal automobiles.
"With one-fifth of all U.S. CO2 emissions coming from light trucks and cars, any serious effort to significantly reduce U.S. emissions would have to encourage fuel conservation in personal automobiles," said David A. Ridenour, vice president of the National Center for Public Policy Research. "But almost half of all Americans oppose spending more for gasoline, despite polls indicating wide public concern over global warming. These results suggest Americans' concern may not be as deep as we've been led to believe."
Opposition to increased gasoline taxes was especially strong among minorities, with 53% of African-Americans indicating they are unwilling to pay higher gas taxes in any amount. Eighty-four percent of blacks and 78% of Hispanics opposed paying an additional 50 cents or more for their gasoline.
"It's not surprising that minorities oppose higher gas taxes in large numbers, as such taxes are sharply regressive, harming the economically-disadvantaged disproportionately," said Ridenour. "An extra $300 per year in taxes means little to someone making $100,000 annually. When you're just getting by, it can mean not having enough for food, rent or utility bills."
Voters were told: "Congress is currently considering legislation that would raise the tax on gasoline in an attempt to motivate Americans to conserve fuel and reduce greenhouse gas emissions." They were asked to indicate how much more they'd be willing to pay on top of what they already pay in gasoline taxes. They were given seven choices: nothing, less than 50 cents, 50 cents, one dollar, two dollars, five dollars, eight dollars or more.
Eighteen percent indicated they are willing to pay an additional 50 cents per gallon of gas or more; eight percent indicated they're willing to spend a dollar or more and just 2% said they're willing to spend $2 or more.
"Congressman Dingell's proposal to raise gas taxes by 50 cents per gallon appears to be dead-on-arrival as far as the public is concerned. Even if it wasn't, Dingell's proposal is too modest to encourage any meaningful fuel conservation," said Ridenour. "Europeans routinely pay between $4 and $5 per gallon of gas in taxes and their fuel appetite continues to grow nevertheless. Just 1% of Americans are willing to spend an additional $5 dollars or more. Republicans are willing to do so by a 3 to 1 margin over Democrats."
Opposition to any gas tax hike was strongest in the Great Lakes, home of the automakers and Congressman John Dingell, at 56%, followed by New England (51%) and the Farm Belt (50%).
Opposition grew once respondents were informed that eliminating passenger cars in the United States altogether would only reduce world emissions by a fraction.
Among those who indicated they are willing to pay more for gasoline to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, 58% indicated that they are less willing to do so, and 42% much less willing, when informed their sacrifice would produce little positive results.
"Many global warming polls ask the wrong questions," said Ridenour. "We shouldn't ask Americans if action is needed on global warming, but how much more they’re willing to pay for that action. We need to also ask whether people would still be willing to pay more, given the almost certain futility of it."
The poll was conducted February 24-26 by Wilson Research Strategies, which surveyed 800 registered voters who are likely to vote in the 2008 presidential election. The poll has a margin of error of 3.46% at a 95% confidence interval.
Full poll results may be found at http://www.nationalcenter.org/NCPPR_Global_Warming_Poll_Questions_0208.pdf
The National Center for Public Policy Research is a non-partisan, non-profit educational foundation established in 1982 that supports commonsense, market-based solutions to environmental problems.
Posted by Amy Ridenour at 12:44 AM
Congratulations to Project 21 fellow Deneen Borelli for spelling out the antiquity of affirmative action policies in the March 18 Boston Globe.
Globe reporter Matt Negrin called Project 21 to ask if the election of a black U.S. president would show that race preference policies are no longer needed. Ward Connerly of the American Civil Rights Institute and Abigail Thernstrom of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights and Manhattan Institute, among others, were also interviewed.
Deneen told the Globe:Times have changed. There are plenty of opportunities available, but to have this crutch... is just wrong. It's discriminatory on all ends.Deneen has previously written about affirmative action in a New Visions Commentary that can be read by clicking here.
Posted by Amy Ridenour at 5:00 PM
Today is the 5th anniversary of the beginning of America's liberation of Iraq in the larger Global War on Terrorism. Anti-war activists are operating throughout the Washington, D.C. area - blocking traffic, blockading buildings and making mischief all over. Project 21 member Kevin L. Martin is trying to help keep things civil outside of the military recruiting office on L Street NW, the site of an attack by left-wing protestors in April.
This past Saturday, Kevin took part in a press conference organized by Move America Forward about the campaign of violence on the part of the left on military recruiters. A male member of the predominantly female Code Pink in attendence, wearing a pink military-style uniform, began to disrupt the event. After shouts in which the protestor - among other things - falsely claimed to be a "second-generation Marine," Kevin took the microphone and was quoted in The Washington Post as saying "Let me tell you something, dammit! I'm a Navy veteran of seven years, and... you are a joke, sir! Please step the hell out of the building!" Security later ejected the protester.
Move America Forward Executive Director Catherine Moy pointed out, "We don't do this at their press conferences."
To read all about the Saturday event, click here.
Posted by Amy Ridenour at 4:22 PM
Black Activist Asks: If Courts Can Gut Second Amendment, How Can We Assume 13th Amendment Ban on Slavery is Safe?_____
For Release: March 18, 2008
Contact: David Almasi at (202) 543-4110 x11 or [email protected]
As the U.S. Supreme Court considers its first major case involving the definition of the 2nd Amendment's protection of gun rights in almost 70 years, black activists with the Project 21 leadership network assert that government should not be allowed to pick and choose what constitutional protections are honored and enforced.
"As a black American, I would be horrified to hear a state or local government enacted legislation or regulation that gutted the 13th Amendment's prohibit on slavery or the 15th Amendment's guarantee that all races could vote. Why aren't more people outraged when the 2nd Amendment's guarantee that individuals can protect themselves is infringed?" asks Project 21 fellow Deneen Borelli. "Besides violating the 2nd Amendment, this case involving the District of Columbia's gun ban is a violation of the fundamental rationale of law as well as immorally denying citizens the right to protect themselves."
In the case of District of Columbia v. Heller, to be heard at 10:00 am Eastern on March 18, the justices will consider arguments about a ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit last spring that struck down the 1976 law that banned most gun ownership in the nation's capital. This particular case is important from other recent gun rights cases heard by the Court because the nature of the case touches the core 2nd Amendment protection of an individual's right to own a firearm.
"In Washington, criminals know that an unarmed citizen is easy prey. Right now, the criminals are winning because the city's gun ban is effectively protecting the plunderer and punishing the property owner," added Project 21's Borelli. "The lower court verdict to restore power to the people to legally possess a suitable firearm will make criminals think twice about their actions, and it is something the Supreme Court should affirm."
Borelli's column on the case is available at http://www.nationalcenter.org/P21NVBorelliGuns90507.html
Project 21, a nonprofit and nonpartisan organization, has been a leading voice of the African-American community since 1992. For more information, contact David Almasi at (202) 543-4110 x11 or [email protected], or visit Project 21's website at http://www.project21.org/P21Index.html.- 30 -
Posted by Amy Ridenour at 12:22 AM
Posted by Amy Ridenour at 12:11 AM
Alex Prud'homme paints a scary picture of America's antiquated system of levees and fingers two culprits: a backlogged Army Corps of Engineers and lax wetlands protection due to a recent Supreme Court ruling on the Clean Water Act. There are two contradictions here.
He invokes the Hurricane Katrina catastrophe, yet fails to mention that it was a wetlands protection lawsuit, filed by an environmental group, which prevented a massive hurricane barrier from being built 30 years ago. As Joseph Towers, former Army Corps chief counsel in the New Orleans district, lamented, "If we had built the barriers, New Orleans would not be flooded."
In addition, the Supreme Court ruling Prud'homme bemoans (Rapanos v. U.S.) should enhance the Corps' ability to focus on backlogged projects. Now the agency can spend less time regulating every isolated wet area in the country and focus on more pressing projects like levee rehabilitation.
Posted by Amy Ridenour at 10:00 PM
Posted by Amy Ridenour at 9:51 PM
You may remember Al Gore being unmasked last year by the Tennessee Center for Policy Research, which discovered that Gore's Nashville mansion was using 20 times the amount of energy as an average American home. Additionally, Gore and his celebrity friends are holding nearly annual rock concerts to celebrate their environmental alarmism. And let's not forget all those special flights they take to and from their international conferences, where they moan about the evils of excessive air travel, among other things.
On Tuesday, March 11, the Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI) will begin running a commercial on cable television exposing the hypocrisy of Gore and the environmentalist elite.
CEI's commercial shows that many in the Third World - particularly those in Africa - are literally dying due to a lack of adequate power, and the catastrophe that could result from imposing anti-global warming emissions regulations on power generation in these areas. Forcing these people to go without would be especially galling considering Gore and his ilk are living opulent lifestyles.
To help CEI and show just how much the anti-energy environmentalist elites are out of step with the rest of the world, Project 21 - the National Center's black leadership network - has gathered statements for the press conference from native Africans and black Americans who have seen first-hand how Western elites try to impose their will on others.
Here are some samples of their statements:Thompson Ayodele, director of the Initiative for Public Policy Analysis in Lagos, Nigeria: "The Nobel Peace Prize, Oscar and an Emmy Mr. Gore has been awarded for his environmental activism will only aid the people of Africa is he melts them down and donates the gold to a relief organization. For him and his colleagues to try to restrict people of the world from obtaining the energy they need in the means that are cost-effective and readily available for them to get it is not humanitarian in any sense of the word."The CEI press conference will be held in the Murrow Room of the National Press Club (529 14th Street NW, 13th floor) at 10:00 am on Tuesday, March 11. A PDF of the statements can be found here (pdf).
Project 21's Bishop Council Nedd II: "If it weren't so unsettling it would be funny that it is people such as Al Gore who are behind policies and pressure to restrict the development of pretty much every sort of successful method of energy production. This is inconvenient and costly to us here in the United States, but it can be a matter of life-and-death in a developing country."
Alice Wanja Hinga, RN, a native Kenyan: The people of Africa cannot afford to worry about their carbon footprint when they are focused on making sure they have enough to eat and can remain healthy. If people from outside Africa want to intervene, it should be to make access to things easier, not more difficult. My people ask for assistance, but the strings attached to certain aid are sometimes worse than not accepting anything in the first place."
Posted by Amy Ridenour at 8:06 PM
CNN's Miles O'Brien recently asserted that the Heartland Institute "desperately wants us to believe" there's a conspiracy to distort information about global warming.
O'Brien said so in his Tuesday story about the Chicago-based group's March 2-4 international global warming conference held in New York.
The trouble is, no one from the Heartland Institute said anything about a conspiracy. Without the power of telepathy, O'Brien would have no way of knowing what Heartland Institute wants.
So why did O'Brien have conspiracy on his mind?
Perhaps because O'Brien was busy distorting the global warming debate at the very time he was mocking this straw man of his own creation.
For example, O'Brien cited a Yale University poll showing that an overwhelming number of Americans - 83% -- are concerned about global warming.
To find the poll, O'Brien had to be pretty creative.
For one thing, he had to track down a poll more than a year old while skipping over other more recent ones, including another Yale poll just last September, showing less concern over global warming. Yale's September poll found 62% of respondents believe urgent action on global warming is needed and only 48% believe that most scientists agree that global warming is occurring.
O'Brien also had to be creative in finding a global warming poll that wasn't weighted to reflect the actual composition of the population. Respondents were screened for age to ensure they were 18 years of age, but nothing else.
O'Brien didn't mention that 71% of those polled also indicated that they are "often interested in theories," that 67% "like to lead others," that 26% have already purchased a vehicles getting 35 mpg or more (yet the average fleet mpg is miraculously still 20.2 mpg); and that 66% had a negative view of the overall state of the environment.
Little wonder than 83% of those polled were concerned about global warming!
Seventy-one percent of those respondents, by the way, self-ided themselves as "intellectual."
Must have been an interesting list they polled.
Finally, O'Brien fails to note that those expressing concern about global warming included people concerned about natural global warming, too. At issue is not all global warming, but anthropogenic - human influenced - global warming.
The poll isn't the only place where O'Brien misled.
He cites Dan Fagin, a journalism teacher at New York University, saying that "skeptics have changed their tune as evidence started stacking up against them" - as though changing ones views as new evidence emerges is an indication of a character flaw.
It is, in fact, an indication of integrity.
Scientists on both sides of the global warming debate - although not enough - have refined their projections and analyses as data has improved and their understanding of the climate increased. That's part of the scientific method.
O'Brien then cited Fagin again, saying, "A decade ago they denied global warming even existed."
Absurd. No one suggested anything of the kind as everyone recognizes that global warming is what makes all life on our planet possible.
The Heartland Institute showed no sign of being "desperate" to prove a conspiracy to misrepresent global warming information.
But after seeing O'Brien's report, perhaps it should be.
Posted by Amy Ridenour at 11:36 PM
Early this morning, Times Square in New York City was rocked by a terrorist explosion. Security cameras show someone on a bicycle approach the military recruiting station located on the south end of the square at about 3:40am. A package was dropped. Minutes later, an explosion that was felt blocks away damaged the recruiting station.
Project 21 and Navy veteran Kevin Martin recently helped lead a rally in support of recruiters in Washington, DC whose office was attacked by left-wing activists (news about this rally can be found here). While the person thought to be responsible for this morning's attack has yet to be found or identified, Kevin believes that the increasingly nasty political rhetoric regarding our forces in Iraq has contributed to an atmosphere in which a domestic terrorist action against our military can be considered.
Here's what Kevin says:This kind of unconscionable behavior is what happens when an already unhinged radical left is spurred into action by the rhetoric of politicians. They are essentially putting a target on the backs of our troops with their anti-war and anti-Bush zeal. Too many politicians seem willing to play fast-and-loose with the facts and turn any news out of Iraq into a negative these days. In the process, they are hurting troop morale and - in this case today - I believe they are inciting acts of domestic terrorism.
As a veteran, I believe this type of behavior cannot be tolerated. With our recruiting stations and recruiters under increasing attacks by leftists across the nation, I find it hard to believe that I have not yet heard anything about congressional investigations into this disturbing trend. When I hear lawmakers opposed to our work in Iraq say they want to support our troops by bringing them home where they will be safe, it now rings hollow. At least, in Iraq, our troops can shoot back when they are under attack.
Posted by Amy Ridenour at 10:20 PM
Congratulations to Project 21 member Bishop Council Nedd II for pushing back against the atheist assault on faith in Pennslyvania.____
Bishop Nedd, who serves the Diocese of the Chesapeake and Northeast of the Episcopal Missionary Church, is also the chairman of In God We Trust, an organization dedicated to promoting religious values and freedoms. Before Christmas, the atheist Freedom From Religion Foundation rented a billboard on U.S. 30 West in Chambersburg that read "Imagine No Religion." In February, In God We Trust rented a billboard of its own just down the street that asks: "Why Do Atheists Hate America?" and features a photo of a child saying the Pledge of Allegiance.
"We found out about it, so we figured we would respond," Nedd told the Chambersburg Public Opinion. "We want to provide a counter balance and draw attention to the issues. This is a national campaign and we want to spark debate. We also feel very strongly about the issue."
Nedd's billboard will rotate among various locations in the Chambersburg area over the next six months and may eventually go national. The atheist billboard was taken down at about the same time as Nedd's went up, and it now reads: "In God We Trust: Kegerreis Outdoor Advertising LLC. The previous sign posted at this location does not reflect the values or morals of our company. Thank you."
To see the entire Chambersburg Public Opinion article about the billboards, click here.
Posted by Amy Ridenour at 10:19 AM
Posted by Amy Ridenour at 1:31 PM
Posted by Amy Ridenour at 1:23 PM
Project 21 Member Bob Parks has begun producing his own multimedia "Outside the Wire" commentaries on the Internet.
In one of his latest postings, which can be found on YouTube, Bob takes on the establishment environmental movement, pointing out how their "good intentions" are "all that matters" and sometimes actually inconvenience or hurt people.
For example, talking about the recent legislative mandate to replace the reliable old incandescent light bulb with compact florescent bulbs (CFLs), Bob points out that the new bulbs require careful handling and special disposal lest they poison their handlers. He notes that "these light bulbs may be friendly to the environment, but don't seem to take too kindly to the saps who bought them."
Bob also cites the circular advice to use paper-then-plastic-then-paper bags at grocery stores as an inconvenience, and the banning of DDT as a deadly remedy to an overstated panic. But that's not all.
To see Bob's entire commentary, go here.
Posted by Amy Ridenour at 2:05 AM
National Center for Public Policy Research Director of Environmental and Regulatory Affairs Peyton Knight will be on KIRO in Seattle on Monday night at 3:00 pm PST (3 pm eastern) to talk about the eco-terror attack in the Seattle suburbs last night that destroyed several area homes under construction._____
You can listen by clicking here and looking for the KIRO on the air tab in the middle of the page.
Posted by Amy Ridenour at 5:45 PM
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