RUSH: Do you want peace and prosperity and negative news accompanying it? Or would you prefer the illusion of peace with class warfare and positive news? Because the circumstances that we’re in now, I think the country is primed for an upbeat fix from El Rushbo. We’ve got a Wall Street Journal poll out there, and it shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone. Congress’ approval rating is 22%. We hear all this talk about Bush at 33 or 36 or 39%. Congress is at 22%, and the question is, does Congress deserve a better approval number than 22% or perhaps does it even deserve 22%? Should Congress’ approval rating be even lower than that? The irony is that at 36%, at least Bush is holding.
The terrain is this. Bush is trying to and will end up, mark my words, upgrading his ratings. That will happen. Congress on the other hand, it’s out of control. The Republicans are now trying to out-Democrat Democrats, and there’s a great piece today, I’m not going to have time to read the whole thing to you, but my buddy Bob Tyrrell has a great piece in the American Spectator. He can’t believe what he’s looking at. He says, “Do my eyes deceive me? Am I reading that President George W. Bush has joined with the Republican leadership to call for investigation of the oil companies in light of soaring oil and gas prices? Oil hit $75 a barrel recently and apparently transformed the Republicans into Democrats, Democrats of the Charles Schumer and [John] Kerry variety.
“Actually if they are going to haul in the oil executives for investigation, I suggest they get to the root of the matter and haul in famed economist Milton Friedman. Let him bring his Nobel Prize along for display. Professor Friedman is the fellow who, roughly fifty years ago, revived the world’s awareness of markets, and he has been explicating the consequences of markets ever since, first from the Department of Economics at the University of Chicago and more recently from an office in the Hoover Institution,” on the campus of Stanford. Now… “The oil industry is a high-risk operation. As Boone Pickens, one of the industry’s most perceptive entrepreneurs, has been saying for several years now, the production of oil has probably peaked.
“The world can pump 85 million barrels a day. The world consumes 30 billion annually and will thirst for more as the years go on. That means prices will go up. Moreover, with a madman running Iran and a would-be Fidel Castro running Venezuela, it is not clear we can count on the aforementioned daily production of 85 million barrels. The politicians may think the answer is to drag businessmen into investigations, but that is not going to produce oil. It may produce votes for the politicians from the electorate’s economically illiterate but not much else. What is needed is more oil or at least a steady contribution to Boone Pickens’ 85 million barrels.
“That means opening up areas where we know oil exists, for instance, the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. It means encouraging the creation of more refineries. We have not built a new refinery in the United States in 30 years [in this country]. It means encouraging alternative energy sources, the best being nuclear. Unfortunately these three recourses have all been thwarted by environmentalists… One wonders why the Republicans have not made energy growth their response to the high energy prices that are troubling the electorate. Instead of haranguing the oil companies, one would have expected the Republican leadership and the President to unite in blaming the Democratic environmentalists while calling for wider oil exploration, more refineries, and the development of a real alternative to fossil fuels, namely nuclear.
“Instead the Republicans have continued to forsake their principles. Yet what do they expect to get for this abandonment? Owing to their excessive spending there already is fear that the Republican vote will stay at home this autumn. Now with the Republicans adopting the economic illiteracy of the Democrats, there is even more pressure for the Republicans to stay home. I do know how the President could lower oil prices immediately. Suspend all federal taxes on oil through the summer driving period. That would put a smile on the electorate’s faces — and it is not nearly as irresponsible as denigrating markets.”
So Congress’ approval is 22%. Does it even deserve that? That’s my question. You can talk about the president all you want. Our guys are trying, as Tyrrell points out, to out-Democrat the Democrats in pandering and demagoguing, and so the left has succeeded with phase one and that is blocking and scaring everyone they can. The second shoe is yet to drop, phase two, and it’s this: Whether it’s a good plan or a bad plan or a very bad plan, there is going to be a plan. There’s going to be a plan to deal with all this, and we’re going to call these oil companies in, and we’re going to rake them over the coals and we’re going to tell the IRS we want to see their books, not one thing of which of those items is going to produce any more oil or alleviate any of the pressures on the market that caused these price rises.
None of this is going to make a shred’s bit of difference to the real problem, but it may solve the problem of elected officials in an election year — and that’s what frustrates me about this. So prepare yourselves for — oh, and how about this brilliant scheme, ladies and gentlemen, a brilliant scheme of $100 rebates to all of us to accommodate the rising prices of gasoline. That is patently absurd. It takes me back, what was this idiot’s name, McGovern, back in 1972, who wanted to give everybody a thousand dollars, or $2,000 just for the sake of it. So we create a panic. We’ve got great economic news.
We’ve got a forging ahead economy, but we’ve got negative news all over the place. Now, we can have one of two things. We can have a roaring economy and we can have great upside potential and a great future for everybody and our kids, along with bad news because the Democrats control the media, the drive-by media, and all that good news cannot be allowed to stand, particularly in an election year. So if you want to go along with all this you can say, “I don’t care about the actual good news. I don’t care about the future opportunity. I’m tired of bad news. I want good news.” Okay, elect Democrats, the country will go to hell, and the media will tell you how wonderful things are, and that way you can have what you want. I’m not playing that way.
RUSH: Let me ask you this. We’ve got these earnings reports out today on Big Oil, and I just have to ask you, do you think it was a coincidence, did the congressional assault on Big Oil build to a crescendo timed to today’s earnings figures? Was it a coincidence, folks? See, I don’t believe in coincidences when it comes to political calendars. I mean, if it were planned and if it were timed, I have to ask this question, and I have no doubt that it was. All of this the past five days, all this bleating, all this pounding of the chest, all this “I’m going to stand on the side of the little guy! We’re going to screw Big Oil! We’re going to bring ’em in here. How dare they!” getting on this retired execs retirement package.
How come it is that all of these brilliant politicians out there can be so farsighted when it comes to an election? They can plan in advance; they can strategerize; they can conspire; they can time a calendar for maximum impact to solve their electoral problems. Why is it that they become blithering idiots when it comes to real solutions to real problems? Because in their lives the only real problem is their next election, and the real solution to that problem is whatever it takes to get them reelected, and then after they get reelected all of a sudden they become blithering idiots, unable to accomplish anything in the real world and solve any kind of real problem. They come up with solutions that will exacerbate and extend the problem, thereby giving themselves something else to solve down the road by the time the next election rolls around. I don’t believe any of this was coincidental.
Now, this program has talked on many, many occasions about the Greatest Generation, that generation being the World War II generation. These are people that came out of the Great Depression. They came out of the Korean War. They fought World War II. They had to deal with Khrushchev banging his shoe on the floor and the podium at the United Nations shouting, “We will bury you! We will bury you,” and they responded to all those challenges.
They won World War II. They had to grow up real fast and they learned very soon that there was a lot in life much larger than themselves, that life did not resolve around them; and because they worked so hard, and because they overcame such challenges, and because they emerged victorious, all the while producing a strong foundation of a burgeoning economy, they then found time to procreate, and they had what’s called the baby boom generation. I’m a member of that worthless generation. I’m just kidding about worthless, but the baby boom generation, because their fathers, grandfathers and mothers and so forth, their parents and grandparents had done so much, they gave them and bequeathed them a world of relative peace.
And we in the baby boom generation had to create our own syndromes and our own traumas, because we needed something to make ourselves feel as though our lives were filled with challenges, too. But compared to the challenges our parents and grandparents faced, ours have not been all that traumatic. Not nearly as such, and in fact we find ourselves in a similar circumstance to our parents and grandparents on the eve of World War II. Here we are on the cusp of the war on terror and the war in Iraq, and I dare say, half this country doesn’t want to get involved. Half the country doesn’t even want to pull their head out of the sand and admit that we even have an enemy. To them the enemy is in the White House and Washington. The enemy is George W. Bush.
So there are some differences here. But it’s time to ask ourselves, folks — and I’m including all of you Gen Xers out there and you Gen Yers and all the other generations that have not yet been named, is it time for us to become the Greatest Generation Version 2.0? Because we have some serious challenges. If you can rise above the liberals today, if you can rise above their efforts to unnerve you, to panic you, to scare the hell out of you, to depress you, to ruin your day, if you can think beyond members of Congress making utter fools of themselves, then the news for your children and grandchildren in our country is actually very wonderful.
But if you want to get caught up in the media bubble of every day the drive-by media touting some doom-and-gloom story — gas prices today, war in Iraq tomorrow, war on terror every day, whatever — if you want to latch on and live in that world, feel free, but if you choose to get above it, if you choose to move beyond it and not let the media bubble every day determine your mind-set and the definition and boundaries of your world, understand that the news for your children and grandchildren is wonderful. It always has been in this country. You and I, all of us, can be part of the new greatest generation. The original greatest generation paid the price of World War II.
We are paying the price, and it’s a far lower price for freedom from OPEC, among other things. Now, I know, you’re being told the high gasoline prices are gloom and doom, it’s a cliff that we’re all going to fall off of, we’re dead, oh, my gosh, our lives are over as we know it, but as usual the opposite of what you are told by the drive-by media is the truth. High oil prices, still higher oil prices, they kick in, they may kick in, they’re going to fluctuate, who knows where they’re going to end up. But one of the things that these high oil prices are going to inspire is American ingenuity. It’s not going to happen in a day. It won’t happen with a government plan, folks. It won’t happen with a Charles Schumer press conference.
Won’t happen with a Jimmy Carter synfuel scheme or a solar scheme or a bio-bubble. As a matter of fact, I have no shame in saying I don’t know where this next batch of American ingenuity will come from, except for one caveat. Sooner or later, the Bill Gates of energy will be identified and find a solution. The higher prices of oil, the higher prices of gasoline, will flush out the entrepreneur spirit in this country, and somewhere, someday, somebody’s going to come along and find a solution to the market. The mother of necessity always creates invention. If the OPEC leaders are as wise as we’re told they are, they have to be more worried about these high oil prices than anyone because these prices, as they continue to rise, seal their doom. We reach a point where we won’t pay it; we’ll find an alternative. Screw them. Get on board, folks. It’s not time to start wringing your hands and have your life governed by doom and gloom.
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