Energy Shortages and Inflation The New Norm as Refinery Closures Outpace Construction

Estimated Reading Time: 4 minutes

Editors’ Note: Progressives have played a coy game. As they over-regulate the energy business, denigrate the industry, have their allies in the environmental organization tie the industry up with lawsuits, and deny capital for expansion with their friends in the ESG movement; they grin like the proverbial Cheshire cat when energy costs soar far faster than the general rate of inflation. Grinning through their teeth they blame the industry, blame Putin, and blame us for wanting reasonably priced oil and gas. But you can’t shut down capacity as demand is expanding and expect lower prices. That defies all economic logic. Voters need to remember that this strangulation of energy is all part of the Progressive/Democrat plan to control your lives, make you more dependent on them, and reduce your standard of living. Some might say that is unfair on our part; it is the save the environment. If that were true, why would they permit capacity to be built elsewhere? Why are Chinese emissions better than ours? They aren’t and the earth can’t tell the difference. If anything, US energy corporations are more diligent in protecting the environment than most foreign operators. No, the energy crisis is contrived by Democrats for political control, not to save the earth. Further, it leaves us vulnerable to foreign producers, many of whom are bad actors. For a better economy, a better environment, and for national security, we need to get off the back of our domestic energy industry.

 

With worldwide refinery closures outpacing new construction, shortages and inflation are likely to be the new norm that inflicts regressive expenses upon those that can least afford it, as control of the worldwide refining industry shifts to Asia and Europe.

As the world has become impassioned with increasing its electricity generation from wind turbines and solar panels from breezes and sunshine, the world is silently slipping into a future of shortages and inflation as society’s demands for all the products and fuels manufactured from crude oil are exceeding the supply available from the dwindling number of refineries.

There were almost 700 oil refineries in the world as of January 2020, but as a result of continuous over regulations, permitting delays, aging equipment,  and the worldwide support of the Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) to divest in fossil fuels, the right operating model and level of integration will be crucial for survival and sustained profitability of refineries.

In 2019 there were 135 refineries in the U.S.  but five facilities were shuttered during the last two years.

Each refinery location is a business that needs to make business decisions. Consequently, one in five oil refineries is expected to cease operations over the next five years. One in five is 20 percent, or almost 140 refineries expected to be shuttered worldwide, resulting in a 20 percent decline in the products manufactured to meet the ever-increasing demands from society.

There are over 100 new refineries under construction, with most of them in Asia with 88, Europe with 12, and North America with 10. Asia is the region with the greatest number of future petroleum refineries. As of 2021, there were 88 new facilities in planning or under construction in Asia. By comparison, Europe is set to see an addition of 12 petroleum refineries, and North America is set to see an addition of 10. The amount of oil fed through refineries in Asia has significantly increased in the past three decades as demand for petroleum products surged in developing countries such as China and India. China is on track to succeed the United States as the country with the greatest oil refinery throughput.

While worldwide demand for the products made with oil derivatives and fuels manufactured at refineries continues to increase, the upcoming closures of manufacturers over the next five years will significantly reduce the supply of those items and place tremendous pressures on continuous shortages and inflation.

Renewables can only generate electricity, and intermittent electricity at best. The undisputable science is that renewables CANNOT manufacture any of the oil derivatives that are the basis of the thousands of products that are the foundation of societies and economies around the world. In fact, renewables cannot exist without crude oil as all the parts of wind turbines and solar panels are made with oil derivatives manufactured from crude oil.

Here is a reminder of what is manufactured from oil that did not exist before 1900 that is needed to support the growing demands of the world’s economy and for the health and well-being of the world’s eight billion residents:

Fuels for the:

  • 50,000 heavy-weight and long-range merchant ships that are moving products throughout the world.
  • 50,000 heavy-weight and long-range jets are used by commercial airlines, private usage, and the military.
  • The 290 million registered vehicles in the U.S. as of 2021, were comprised of about 56 percent trucks, 40 percent cars, and 4 percent motorcycles.
  • The cruise ships now move twenty-five million passengers around the world.
  • The space program.

Oil derivatives to make thousands of products such as:

  • Tires for the billions of vehicles.
  • Asphalt for the millions of miles of roadways.
  • Medications and medical equipment.
  • Vaccines.
  • Communications systems, including cell phones, computers, iPhones, and iPads.
  • Water filtration systems.
  • Sanitation systems.
  • Fertilizers that come from natural gas help feed billions.
  • Pesticides to control locusts and other pests.
  • Wind turbines and solar panels are all made with products from fossil fuels.

With worldwide refinery closures outpacing new construction, shortages and inflation are likely to be the new norm that inflicts regressive expenses upon those that can least afford it.

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This article was published by CFACT, Committee for a Constructive Tomorrow and is reproduced with permission.

Abortion Protest Locks Down Lawmakers Inside Arizona Capitol, Tear Gas Deployed

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Protesters angry about Friday morning’s U.S. Supreme Court ruling released some frustration at the state Capitol building in Phoenix later that evening.

Several hundred protesters gathered at the doors of the Capitol as the Legislature was finishing up its legislative session.

A short time later, protesters could be seen on a video taken by Sen. Michelle Ugenti-Rita, R-Scottsdale, hitting windows and kicking open glass doors, prompting Arizona’s Department of Public Safety to intervene. 

From videos taken outside of the Capitol, police officers stationed on a balcony were seen deploying tear gas into the crowd.

Security could be seen informing lawmakers that they would have to take precautionary measures. Arizona DPS began ushering them and others into the Capitol lobby.

“While Arizona State Senate members were wrapping up passing important legislation for the session, extremist demonstrators made their way to the entrance of the Senate building and began forcibly trying to make entry by breaking windows and pushing down doors,” a statement from the state Senate read.

According to a statement from a Senate official, none of the protestors made it into the building.

Senate President Karen Fann celebrated law enforcement’s quick response to what could have been a dangerous situation.

“We are incredibly thankful for our local law enforcement who quickly intervened during what could have been a destructive and dangerous situation for our members, staff, and public inside the Senate,” said Fann. “Violence is never the answer, and we will not camouflage what was a blatant attempt at an insurrection as a ‘rally’ or ‘peaceful protest.’ We are calling on all state lawmakers to condemn these acts. There is a way to make your voice heard and violence is never the answer.”

Due to residual tear gas making it into the Senate chambers via the building’s ventilation system, lawmakers finished their business and ended the session in another room.

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This article was published by the Center Square and is reproduced with permission.

Want to Understand the Inflation Problem? Look to Harvey Road, Not Pennsylvania Avenue

Estimated Reading Time: 4 minutes

As news headlines have reported, the US economy today suffers its worst inflation in two generations. Not coincidentally, US public debt is also at its all-time high. As if on cue, opposition pundits are blaming the Biden administration, whose apologists, in turn, blame Russia and corporate greed while touting the success of Washington’s $5 trillion in recent crisis spending. This partisan and ideological bickering misses the central point.

Some economists know better than to treat today’s economic woes as a partisan problem with roots in the 2020 election. Alan Blinder of Princeton University, for example, has for several years complained that politics gets in the way of smart ideas. Professor Blinder’s “lamppost problem” suggests that we would not be here had past policies not fallen victim to the politicization of ideal economics. Moving forward, mainstream economists join Professor Blinder in saying that we now must aggressively neutralize politics, unchain the ideas of intellectual elites, and finally—hallelujah!—let smart policies rule. Never mind that these same economists have admitted fault for getting it wrong, thus vindicating the steady analyses of AIER’s Sound Money Project directed by Will Luther.

Let’s be honest. Even gifted Ivy League economists must have trouble keeping a straight face while recommending that we take politics out of the equation. This is America, after all. Aren’t we the world’s shining exemplar of political inclusion? Sure we are. Yet puzzlingly, there is a long line of thinkers who say that we should replace politics with the judgment of elites. In today’s monetary and fiscal policy, this thought goes back to at least the days of John Maynard Keynes.

On the eve of the early 1980s high inflation rates, mainline economists James Buchanan and Richard Wagner drew attention to the rising debt and inflationary risks of the time. Their 1977 book carried the evocative title, Democracy in Deficit: The Political Legacy of Lord Keynes. Buchanan and Wagner’s prose minced few words, describing the Keynesian influence as the culprit behind “continuing and increasing budget deficits, a rapidly growing governmental sector, high unemployment, apparently permanent and perhaps increasing inflation, and accompanying disenchantment with the American sociopolitical order.”

Buchanan and Wagner argue that the post-Keynesian era suffers from the “presuppositions of Harvey Road.” Harvey Road is a reference to the Keynes family home in Cambridge. A biographer of Keynes, R. F. Harrod, coined this “presuppositions” expression, and Buchanan and Wagner use it to argue that Keynes’s economic theory operates in a political vacuum where the world of monetary and fiscal policy is carried out by wise men in authority. This intellectual aristocracy could ensure conditions of prosperity, freedom, and even peace. In 2011, after President Obama’s stimulus package, many remarked that “Keynes was back.” In reality, the Keynesian influence never died, and modern macroeconomists and policymakers still suffer from the presuppositions of Harvey Road.

Following Harrod’s description, today’s politicians, Federal Reserve officials, and mainstream macroeconomists still posture as enlightened, wise people, who therefore know from their expert analysis what is the best course of action. These elites are also trusted as benevolent people, therefore, they can be trusted to choose the course of action that is best for society. Finally, they are deemed reasonable people, therefore, they will seek to persuade one another and the general public that their chosen course is the best course. Is it just us, or does this 45-year-old description seem more apropos than ever in 2022?

While the proverbial lampposts might shine more brightly along Pennsylvania Avenue than along Harvey Road, let us not fall victim to casting central blame along the former. America’s fallible and often mistaken ruling elites have fanned the flames of today’s economic dumpster fire. It may be tempting to jump to the conclusion that we should replace the “intellectual aristocracy” with democracy. Again, this is America. But when you look closely at the history behind these problems, as we have done in our recent and ongoing work, it becomes clear that unchained democracy has been part of the problem, and crisis periods have justified all of us in treating the government as a fiscal commons.

Perhaps the central point for today’s inflation problem is that we cannot remove the political dimension, but we can better insulate our fiscal and monetary house from the foul sides of politics. One part of the course forward should be to replace trust in politics and elites with acceptance, followed by restraint. This requires recognition that politicians and ruling elites are neither angels nor wizards, and that voter demand for largesse deserves moral judgment alongside corporate greed. From the standpoint of a healthy economy, it is wrong for big business to rent-seek its way to corporate welfare. It is wrong for households to demand loose money to bubble up home values and retirement plans. It is wrong for politicians to take credit for loose budgets and every economic success while bickering over blame for their failures. And it is wrong for Fed officials to invent new instruments of control that transforms their jobs into old-fashioned central planning. Taking politics out means adopting ex-ante rules that retrain all of us from treating the government like a fiscal commons. Instead of replacing smart elites with unchained democracy, we should turn to “small c” constitutional constraint and republican governance. A bipartisan generation of loose money and loose budgets has created major negative spillover effects, and today’s inflation problem is what we all have to show for it.

Taking Buchanan and Wagner’s Democracy in Deficit seriously means putting the focus on political morality and institutional rules. These rules restrain discretion in monetary policy and limit both the scope and scale of fiscal policy. AIER’s Alex Salter and others are right that we need Milton Friedman back now more than ever. But even more so, we need Buchanan and Wagner to take front and center in the political and economic discussion.

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This article was published at AIER, American Institute of Economic Research, and is reproduced with permission.

Biden and Powell Are in Denial—A Recession Is Indeed “Inevitable”

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And they are the ones who made it so.

On Wednesday, the Federal Reserve announced that it will “raise” interest rates faster than previously planned in order to “fight” worsening inflation.

In a press conference, Fed Chairman Jerome Powell tried to assure investors and the public that the Fed is, “not trying to induce a recession now. Let’s be clear about that.” As the Wall Street Journal reported, Powell “still believes [the Federal Reserve] can cool the economy and bring down inflation while engineering a so-called soft landing in which the economy and labor market continue to grow.”

On Thursday, President Biden was similarly hopeful, telling the Associated Press that a recession is “not inevitable.”

That same day, investors splashed cold water on Biden and Powell’s hopes. After the Fed’s announcement, markets briefly rallied before tumbling yet again.

Yet it’s not just traders who beg to differ with the rosy optimism emanating from the White House and the Fed, but economic reality itself. Biden and Powell are in denial. A soft landing is impossible, a recession is inevitable, and it is their own policies that made it so.

Media reports tend to leave out why the Fed thinks raising interest rates will fight inflation in the first place. First of all, it is grossly misleading to say that the Fed “raises” interest rates or “fights” inflation.

Imagine a bully pins down one of his victims. If the bully eases up, allowing the victim to stand up on his own, you wouldn’t say that the bully “raised” up his victim. Yet that is basically what the Fed is doing with regard to interest rates. The Fed has been holding down interest rates, and now it’s relenting a bit to allow them to rise somewhat.

And imagine an arsonist pumps gasoline on a fire. If the arsonist eases up on the pump, allowing the fire to die down a bit, you wouldn’t say that the arsonist is “fighting” the fire. Yet that is basically what the Fed is doing with inflation. The Fed has been driving up inflation, and now it’s relenting a bit to allow prices to moderate somewhat.

The way the Fed holds down interest rates is by “quantitative easing,” a euphemism for flooding the banking system with newly created dollars. The Fed has been holding interest rates down to near zero by injecting trillions of new dollars into the banks.

More money chasing the same amount of goods will tend to bid up prices. Federal Reserve bureaucrats are at least economically literate enough to be aware of that, so they know their money pumping is fueling the flames of inflation. And the inflation conflagration is getting dangerous enough to back them into a corner. They feel they have no other choice but to ease up on the pump, even if it means allowing interest rates to rise.

Fed policymakers are highly reluctant to do so, because the main reason they have been holding interest rates down has been to “stimulate” the economy, especially in the face of COVID and the lockdowns. Many investors and economists fear that an economy with less monetary stimulus will crash and fall into a recession.

But what almost nobody understands is what crashes and recessions even are and why they happen. And they have no excuse, because that was clarified way back in 1912 by the great Austrian economist Ludwig von Mises.

As Mises explained, crashes and recessions are made inevitable by monetary stimulus. Money pumping can only stimulate the economy by overextending it.

The extra money sloshing around the banking system lowers the interest rate by boosting investor demand for resources to use in new and expanded production projects. This means more investment opportunities, higher profits, more jobs, and higher wages: i.e., a “stimulated” economy.

New and expanded production projects would be fine and great if they were matched by new and expanded resources to support them—made available by higher savings. That’s what a natural drop in the interest rate would signify. But the infusion of new money only expands production; it does nothing to reduce present consumption and thus increase savings. So it results in an over-commitment of available resources.

It’s the simple logic of scarcity: we have (1) the same finite stock of resources, (2) more production demands for resources, and (3) the same (if not more) consumption demands for resources.

Eventually, something’s gotta give.

The Fed’s money pumping only “stimulates” the economy by deluding investors into behaving as if there are more available resources in the economy than there actually are. At some point, that delusion must run headlong into economic reality.

Generally, that happens when the Fed finally eases up on pumping money into the banking system. With less new money pumping it up, the effective demand of investors for resources collapses back down to a level compatible with consumer demand and the actual rate of saving. Deluded less by monetary stimulus, market actors start reckoning with economic reality. The interest rate spikes, stock prices collapse, and throughout the economy, production projects that looked like profitable winners are revealed to be unaffordable losers (“malinvestments”).

That is what a crash is.

Entrepreneurs then scale back or liquidate the loser projects, reallocating resources (including human resources) to uses that are more compatible with the now clearer economic reality. That reallocation can only happen through a mass change of partners throughout the economy. This means many painful “break-ups” of impractical economic relationships: lay-offs, contract cancellations, bankruptcies, etc.

That is what a recession is.

Those break-ups are prerequisites to the formation of new, more practical economic relationships: new jobs being filled, new contracts being signed, and new businesses being started.

That is what recovery is. The result is a healthier economy. And the only path from an unhealthy economy to a healthier one is through a recession.

That is why Biden and Powell are wrong. A recession is inevitable. It’s also necessary. It was made inevitable and necessary by their own policies: by Biden (as well as President Trump before him) crippling the economy with lockdowns and other destructive policies, and by Powell “stimulating” the crippled economy into a distorted, overextended, and unsustainable condition.

The only way to heal that condition is to let the economy heal itself through a recession. And the sooner that Biden and Powell let that happen, the better.

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This article was published by FEE, Foundation for Economic Education and is reproduced with permission.

Bill Maher Says Donald Trump Will Easily Win In 2024 If He ‘Can Just Let Go’ Of 2020

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Bill Maher thinks Donald Trump can cruise to a win in 2024 if he just lets the 2020 election go.

Why? Well, Drag Queen Story Hour might be enough to propel Trump to a victory, according to Maher.

“And I just thought, you know, if Trump could just let go of the election, which he can’t, he can win this so easy because he can win just on Drag Queen Story Hour…Again, if he could just let go of the election, but at this point, you know, he’s just like a hotel room that smells at some point you just want a new room, you know what I mean? And DeSantis, I mean, he’s just more is more vibrant, if you like people who don’t lose elections and, you know,” Maher said when talking about Trump’s election chances, according to Fox News.

 

It’s hard to argue with Maher’s comments about Trump and DeSantis. It seems like the crazy people on both fringes are dominating the narrative, but the difference is that one side definitely doesn’t think it’s okay for young children to be subjected to sexual material.

As we’ve seen time and time again, parents care about looking out for their children, and the justified outrage over the fact children were brought to a drag show shows people are not happy.

Maher has often said he hasn’t gotten more conservative but that liberals have just gone way too far to the left. Judging from his comments, he’d apply that mindset to Trump crushing the field in 2024 if he can just stop with the 2020 talk.

I think most rational observers will agree with his assessment. The crazier America gets with insane stuff, especially stuff targeted at kids, the better it is for politicians on the right.

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This article is published by The Daily Caller News Foundation and is reproduced with permission.

Strong Families Are Worth Defending

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In 1965, Daniel Patrick Moynihan wrote a landmark report in which he contended that the rising number of black families headed by unmarried mothers would reduce the prospects for Blacks to rise out of poverty, in spite of that era’s landmark civil rights legislation.

Moynihan was furiously denounced for his efforts. But he was proven right and he would be even more correct making the same observations today.

It’s been a tough half-century for families. Although Moynihan focused his concerns on Blacks, family breakdown correlates as much with income level as it does with race.

Because there are more low-income Blacks, more black children are raised by single mothers, but the overall percentage of births to unmarried women has gone from 5% in 1960 to 40% today. In 1970, 84% of US children spent their entire childhood with both biological parents. Today, about half do.

Partly because of the withering criticisms directed at Moynihan, the chattering classes have mostly avoided the issue of family deterioration, at least until recently. But the consequences have been enormous.

Harvard economist Raj Chetty analyzed the causes of income disparity and concluded that “the strongest and most robust predictor is the fraction of children with single parents.“

In fact, there is scant evidence that race or racial discrimination causes the multiple economic and societal problems associated with family breakdown. Government spending doesn’t seem to have any effect, nor even does education explain the income gap. It is family status itself.

So what caused families, long our core civic institution and the means for passing on our values, to falter? There’s no easy answer, of course, but scholars note a sea change in our views of almost everything that began about the middle of the last century.

Especially in developed countries, people became more anti-authoritarian and more critical of traditional rules and roles. Views about sex outside of marriage, divorce, cohabitation, and single parenthood significantly changed.

It wasn’t all bad. Many of the changes extended civil rights and created a more fair society. But some of the “progress” has been tough on the kids.

For example, it’s not judgmental, just descriptive, to note that the increase in cohabitation has resulted in more unstable family structures.

Even with children, cohabiting couples break up faster and more often than married couples. Unmarried fathers are even less likely than divorced dads to form lasting bonds with their children. What may appear to be simply a matter of documentation can have a profound impact on the well-being of children.

Changing mores regarding sex before marriage has resulted in millions of young women bearing children for which they have made no financial or other preparations.

It’s not judging, it is the essence of caring for each of us to do a better job of informing these potential mothers of the catastrophic lifelong consequences of their casual decisions, both on themselves and the new life they are bringing into the world. We should also do a better job of making unwed fathers, many of whom openly boast about the children they are not raising, accountable for the consequences of their actions.

As Ronald Reagan might say, the government is not the solution to this problem. It is the problem. There’s no question that the Great Society welfare rules, requiring recipients to be unmarried and unemployed to qualify for benefits, led to countless women making the sensible decision to “marry the government“ rather than the uneducated, undependable father.

The government has also mortally harmed families by taking over many of their traditional functions, especially care of the young and the aged. Families traditionally stayed together to assure that those unable to provide for themselves would be sustained.

Today, it is assumed that the elderly are entitled to be cared for by the government. Some adults are known to simply walk away from their families because they don’t see the need.

We need sound strong families for all Americans, not only the wealthy and privileged. It would help if the government did less harm. But we need to do a better job of protecting and prioritizing our families, respecting the outsized role they play in making our country strong and our lives worthwhile.

Democrats’ Disastrous, Capricious Energy Policy

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Democrats have spent decades warning that the United States must stop using the most efficient and affordable energy sources or it will be consumed by heat waves, fireballs, and cataclysmic weather events.

Every flood, every hurricane—every natural event, really—is now blamed on climate change. We have burdened our children with an irrational dread over their future. Then again, many in The Cult of Malthus won’t even have children.

So, why, if we’re on the precipice of this apocalypse if saving the planet trumps every other concern, is President Joe Biden begging everyone to drill? On the days Democrats aren’t blaming Russian President Vladimir Putin for rising gas prices (a cost the president not long ago argued was worth paying for “freedom”), they’re blaming oil companies for profiteering.

As the national average hit $5.01 last Wednesday (nearly $2 higher than a year earlier), Biden sent letters to refining companies threatening to once again abuse his executive powers if they do not immediately alleviate high prices—a political appeal to the imaginary “greedflation.”

Biden, who promised a 100% “clean-energy economy” with “net-zero emissions” in a couple of decades, now demands energy companies, already at utilization rates above 90%, invest tens of billions more in new drilling infrastructure, when everyone knows that tomorrow when prices recede, Democrats are going to go right back to passing laws and regulations that undercut their business.

Today, Democrats demand CEOs spend more; tomorrow, they will promise to “hold oil executives accountable” and drag them in front of congressional committees where they will be scolded by economically illiterate windbags.

That future is baked into today’s price. Because Democrats’ energy policy is a schizophrenic mess, oscillating from puerile to pernicious. You can’t spend decades working to undercut production and campaign on the promise of destroying industry and then demand it turn on a dime when it’s politically convenient.

Democrats will argue that this is a unique emergency as prices have spiked to historic highs. Guess what? Energy prices will always be at historic highs when you create shortages, which is exactly what progressives have been advocating we do for years.

Virtually every left-wing energy proposal in the past two decades, if not longer, has been designed to create false scarcity, either through fabricated marketplaces and stringent regulations or by putting caps on production. This is what they wanted.  

“No more drilling on federal lands,” Biden promised during the 2020 presidential campaign. “No more drilling, including offshore. No ability for the oil industry to continue to drill, period, ends, No. 1.”

Not No. 2. No. 1.

“No more—no new fracking,” the president also said.

Blue states across the country have either banned fracking or are in the process of banning fracking projects.

And, on the first day of his presidency, Biden rejoined the Paris Agreement—an accord he is now working hard to break—revoking permits for Keystone XL, a 1,700-mile pipeline that was going to carry approximately 800,000 barrels of oil a day into the United States (also baked into the price).

Biden signed a slew of executive orders prioritizing climate change over energy production, halting oil and natural gas leases on all public lands. When a court blocked him, the Biden administration appealed the decision, even as indications of an energy spike were clear.

Rather than threatening price controls, the president should just rescind all his executive orders.

Of course, until some new technology is devised, implementing any policy that resembles the Green New Deal—the plan Biden says is the “framework” for his own efforts on “environmental justice”—would hold approximately the same economic consequences as having coronavirus economic shutdowns for 30 years straight. That’s merely if we followed the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change recommendations on carbon emissions.

Last year, with inflation already looming, Biden preached that it was a “moral imperative” to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 50% from 2005 levels by 2030 and 100% by 2050. That’s a policy that will have us fondly reminiscing about $5 a gallon.

Energy policy can’t be capriciously implemented and then abandoned every time the Democrats’ poll numbers flail. This is just a little taste of the Green New Deal. There is no sentient being that could accept the notion that Democrats are the party that is in favor of abundant fossil fuels.

Hopefully, the price—even in small measure—for Democrats’ green policies is so politically severe that they will moderate. Because we all have unattainable dreams.

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This article was published by The Daily Signal and is reproduced with permission.

What We Saw During ‘Night of Rage’ Pro-Abortion Protest

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As the sun set over Washington, D.C., hundreds of pro-abortion demonstrators stood chanting and holding signs outside the Supreme Court.

Rally speakers called for protesters to “take to the streets” in response to the Supreme Court’s ruling Friday that overturned Roe v. Wade.

In the majority opinion, Justice Samuel Alito wrote: “Like the infamous decision in Plessy v. Ferguson, Roe was also egregiously wrong and on a collision course with the Constitution from the day it was decided.”

The protesters outside the Supreme Court on Friday night appeared to disagree.

Below are videos and pictures from the “Night of Rage,” as it was dubbed by the pro-abortion demonstrators. Warning: Rude language ahead.

Around 8:30 p.m., a group of 30 protesters dressed in black and carrying an Antifa sign arrived at the Supreme Court and proceeded to march down Constitution Avenue toward downtown Washington.

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This article was published by The Daily Signal and is reproduced with permission.

Halfway There

Estimated Reading Time: 2 minutes

On April 12, 2022, Georgia Governor Brian Kemp signed Senate Bill 319, Constitutional carry, into law. Constitutional carry in Georgia goes into effect immediately. Georgia is now the 25th Constitutional carry state, and the Peach State becomes the fourth state to join that group in 2022. Half of the country now recognizes the right of a law-abiding adult who is legally allowed to carry a concealed firearm to do so without first having to obtain government permission. This ensures that citizens have the right to self-defense without government red tape or delays, or having to suffer the whims of local authorities who “shall not” have the stroke to ban you from exercising your right to self defense.

Gov. Kemp also signed House Bill 218, to grant universal recognition to concealed carry permits held by non-Georgia residents, issued by any other state. It also directs the Georgia Attorney General to enter into formal reciprocity agreements with any state that requires a formal agreement to recognize a Georgia Weapons Carry License. This reform recognizes that Georgia residents traveling to other states, and visitors to Georgia, should not be left defenseless simply by crossing a state line.

At a signing ceremony the next day, joined by First Lady Marty Kemp and two of his daughters, Governor Kemp made a few interesting comments I thought you might enjoy.

“I’m excited to be here today. SB 319 and HB 218 help build a safer, stronger Georgia. Here at Gable [Sporting Goods] is where [wife] Marty and I bought [daughter] Lucy her first firearm — a Glock 43X 9mm, which she is carrying today!

“We did that, not only because we strongly believe in the Second Amendment, but we also want Lucy and both her sisters to be able to defend themselves. As the parents of three daughters, there’s nothing Marty and I care more about than making sure Jarrett, Lucy, and Amy Porter are safe. With Jarrett a recent graduate and Lucy and Amy Porter still in college, that isn’t as easy as it used to be.

“SB 319 makes sure that law-abiding Georgians, including our daughters and your family, too, can protect themselves without having to ask permission from state government. The Constitution of the United States gives us that right — not the government. And HB 218 ensures that individuals who are licensed to carry a weapon in another state are also authorized to do so here in Georgia.”

So far this year four states — Alabama, Ohio, Indiana, and Georgia — have passed Constitutional carry or permitless-carry laws. Alabama’s (22nd) law will go into effect on January 1, 2023. Ohio’s law will go [went] into effect on June 12, 2022. Indiana’s will go into effect on July 1, 2022. Perhaps Louisiana, Florida, or Nebraska will become the 26th state to adopt Constitutional carry, and perhaps before the end of 2022.

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This article was published by Gun Tests and is reproduced with permission from the author.

Scottsdale Official Faces Board Expulsion After Arizona AG Files Suit

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School Board member Jann-Michael Greenburg is facing potential removal from the Scottsdale Unified School District school board.

Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich has filed a lawsuit in Maricopa County Superior Court, arguing that Greenburg should be required to step down from the board after multiple violations of public hearing requirements.

Brnovich said Monday the lawsuit’s goal is to, “…seek to have Greenburg removed, impose civil penalties on the board, and ensure no future Open Meeting Law (OML) violations occur.”

The lawsuit takes place after a series of meetings in August 2021, when Greenburg, “knowingly structuring an agenda and meeting so as to prohibit public comment about a proposed mask mandate and other subjects…” the complaint read.

Greenburg faced scrutiny by school district officials and the Scottsdale Police Department for his alleged involvement in keeping and sharing a set of online files containing personal information of parents who opposed the board’s COVID-19 mitigations, including information on some of their children. Greenburg’s father, Michael Greenburg, was allegedly the proprietor of the information. Neither organization found any reasons to pursue charges.

The school board voted to remove Greenburg from his position as president in November 2021, with some recommending he resign.

The suit stated Greenburg created content restrictions during board meetings, cutting off speakers when they strayed too far from the topic of the instructional time model. Similarly, Greenburg interrupted multiple parents, going as far as to conclude with profanity directed at the parents.

Though criticism of parents’ remarks is allowed, it must be done after the close of the open call to the public.

Creating content restrictions as well as interrupting speakers is considered a violation of the school board meeting code, thus breaking the Scottsdale Unified School District Number 48’s rule, “…to open the conduct of the business of government to the scrutiny of the public and to band decision-making in secret.”

If Brnovich wins, Greenburg could face expulsion from the Scottsdale school board. As described by the case document, “The Open Meeting Law further provides that in such a suit ‘the court may remove the public officer from office.’”

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This article was published by The Center Square and is reproduced with permission.