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Old 01-25-2005, 08:57 AM   #211
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Originally Posted by markdoane
Brad,

Perhaps I misunderstood your original comment:
"And as for China, I guess you're prefer to play the kid that whines on the playground, "But what about him, Mommy? He doesn't haftuh!""

Do you believe that the USA should just suck it up and let a country like China have a free pass? And you think that statescraft doesn't involve whining? Don't get a job in the State Department!

And who is the "Mommy"? The UN? Global opinion? Allah?

Perhaps if we use the "He doesn't haftuh!" argument, then Korea and Iran should use the same reasoning when we demand that they stop manufacturing nuclear weapons?

You're welcome to stand by your comment. I just don't think it made a whole lot of sense as a argument for the Kyoto Accord.
I do stand by the analogy - that's what little kids do that "don't wanna," but offer no constructive alternative! We can't afford to look for the lowest common denominator and hide behind it. If it weren't China, we would point a finger at Australia. And Korea and Iran are using that argument, you're proving my point that it's not mature reasoning! They don't have the security or infrastructure to handle WMD, and they shouldn't be allowed to have them just because we do! (Nobody should have 'em, but that genie is out of the bottle.)

I have no problem rejecting Kyoto, if an alternative is put on the table. Ignoring the problem isn't an acceptable reaction. We're the leading cause of pollution, and I don't think we're doing enough to stop it, period. Hello? Our research on global warming solutions has been funded by Exxon... is that unbiased research?

Silvertwinkie is right, it's about changing the way we drive, what we drive, how we consume. But it's also about relying on our elected officials (red or blue) to keep pushing to give us better options, this isn't going to be a "feel good, grass roots, tree-hugging" kind of thing. It's going to be a hard core revolt against the oil, timber and automaker lobby. It's time for a shift in our thinking, from the top down (regardless, 'Twinkie, of how that metric thing ended up). This is done through legislation. We have to majorly shift directions and go after the causes of pollution the same way we went after tobacco. I think we can do it without dismantling our entire way of life, and I think we can do it without making millions unemployed.

I'm not laying it all at Bush's feet - I'm just saying he has convinced me the least of anybody I've ever heard that he's able to put his and his friends' interests after the good of the planet.

And I'll say this too: the longterm health of the planet is infinitely more important than the good of America, and the sooner we recognize this, the better off we'll be. As we're waving our flag and screaming our anthem, some of us start to slowly think of the U.S. as a little bit better than everyone else. I can't stop you, but be warned: the U.S.S.R. did that too, and so did the empire of Rome, and Napoleon, and Hitler. I'm not saying we're trying to conquer other lands, 'cause we're absolutely not. I'm just noting that when powerful nations cross the line from enormous pride... to believing they're above reproach - it's not a long road to ruin.

The only thing we gain with power, is even more responsibility to be an effective leader, and on that test right now... I give my country a "C-".
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Old 01-25-2005, 09:19 AM   #212
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Most of the hydrogen cell manufacturing is based on using natural gas. Water and biomass is just frosting. How many gas wells have been drilled within a 4 mile circle around your house in the past year? It's 20-30 here. And we are in the 'burbs mostly now. We are paying the price.
If we are at war, why doesn't Bush declare a similar program as in WW2. Austerity. Victory gardens, gas rationings, buying USA products or doing without. The Govn't is getting hard pressed to keep new sign-ups for the armed forces.
As for the Kyoto Protocal, for 30 years and longer I have been fighting to live on the land as lightly as possible, planting hundreds of trees, devoting my acreage to wildlife support, cleaning up the land, being organic, having an electric cycle. I finally realised the Earth can shake mankind off like a bunch of fleas, and keep moving on for a couple of billion years. What we are fighting for is earthspace suitable to sustain people in a healthy way. The trouble with most Americans, is we are horrendously spoiled, and can't see the forrest for the SUVs. and have no idea what living in a warzone is REALLY like. Perhaps we should have mandatory 2 year government service, for all. Those not soldiers ,can cook or manage supplies, or help the guys who are coming home missing limbs, to adapt to handicapped living. Or cleaning up depleted uranium bullets and other contaminated sites, or cleaning up left-over landmines, or building better housing for the troops at home. The list goes on. Let CEOs clean up contaminated military bases or clean up oil spills with their own hands. Let everyone participate in the war or wars so we all understand what war means.. To be shaken out of our comfortable ways. 100% of americans to the best of his or her own abilities. (actually this sounds a little like what China did to their intellectuals when they were sent to manual labor). But ours would be for America, for Freedom, and Democracy. I'm sure the spinmeisters could have a great time. But maybe it might make a little conscious change in the American Way. A little "Compassionate conservativness". (compassionate is defined as feeling or showing pity, sympaththetic. "conservatism' -the disposition in politics to maitain the existing order and to resist or oppose change or innovation".) So someone explain to me what Bush's favorite expression means to the country???? I am totally at a loss, as he certainly doesn't use it in that context. It certainly doesn't sound like he is actively out to help people's lives change for the better. More like he is still out to make money for himself and his cronies at the average American's expense. But it's a great
sound bite. Just not very healthy for our kid's and future generations. Bush does not want change- that's why he is against anything to do with climate change- any kind of Kyoto doesn't stand a chance under his watch. (and Silvertwinkie-no reply from you.) silver suz
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Old 01-25-2005, 09:27 AM   #213
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Brad,

Good arguments, and I agree. It's up to each of us to move the ball forward. I think your "C-" is about right.

But why do you bring Australia into the argument? They feel the same way we do about Kyoto! We aren't the only country that feels there might be a better agreement if we just work a little harder.

A flawed agreement on global warming will just encourage cheating and discourage the search for alternatives.
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Old 01-25-2005, 09:32 AM   #214
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I agree Brad. Government does have some responsibility here. Maybe it was shortsided not to say no and come back with something different. I am unsure if during the treaty process, the US did or did not try to modify it and the others just said no. You know every president has taken care of his own, no matter who has been in office. In the Johnson years (I think he was a Democrat), he took care of Texas really good and his group of buddies. Nixon too. Point is that it's politics, and that we have struck a nerve here on the environment card and this president may or may not be supporting big oil and the manufac sector a bit more than others might have done. I still feel that hydrogen is our best hope when it comes to autos, but the issue goes so far beyond the feds and the consumer. Change in life usually comes slowly, and if goverment is involved you can easily add 10 years to that already slow process, but you are right, if there was just as much fire under the behind to do hydrogen as there was to go into Iraq, maybe we could have done it in 7 or 8 years. There is no doubt in my mind as good as John Kerry sounded, could he (or anyone for that matter) have pulled off as much as he promised, paid for it and got widespread acceptance from the consumers since the initial cost of change are high...just like cell phones, DVD and CD players, etc. Only with time do these costs go down and get more widely accepted. You could say that if we started in 2000, we'd be there already, and you'd be right, but on the list of priorities, cleaning up the world of "bad guys" in a post 9/11 world took the top spots on the prioirty list. Now if 9/11 didn't happen and Bush did nothing else but the status quo, I'd have considered Kerry as I did Clinton the first time around. Before you say why didn't we start in 2000, I would first ask, why didn't we start in 1992 outside of a few token gestures from the Clinton years like no snowmobiles in the national parks, or just closing off areas of wetlands, etc. Those I would consider some government actions taking the lead which produced little.

Oh and so sorry Suz, you won't get off the hook that easy. I won't be able to not reply since it's an open topic, but let's just say that I don't agree with most of what you've said (not that it's a big surprise ). One area in particular is the drilling, if it's bad, why not move? You must have some means, I mean I thought I reacall you just bought a CCD thats being ozoneated. The production of the cell hydrogen solution though correct would produce far, far less emissions from cars and trucks than currently released today, so it would be a small price to pay. The plants that make stuff have to be some place, if you care not to be by them or produce the raw materials that would go into the construction or other needs, there are options and it's all about choices.

BTW, "we" (the feds) didn't go after tobacco, the slime ball lawyers did. I know that tobacco did do some wrongs, but so do the alcohol folks and other vise based companies too. The feds went after Microsoft, and I am unsure what the final outcome of that will really be....the EU did the same thing.
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Old 01-25-2005, 09:44 AM   #215
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Wow... I go to a meeting, and go to bed without checking in and get up this morning to thirty new posts? Whew! Being the opinionated bigmouth that I am, I'm compelled to comment on some... (keep in mind I'm a registered Democrat as you read through this...) One of the things that I REALLY enjoy about AirstreamForums.com are the members. You folks are some of the most well educated and articulate folks on the internet who share a common interest (our Airstreams), and I want to say thanks to each of you who has posted on this thread for the betterment of all. I learn a great deal here, and I am always humbled by how well you can express and support your various perspectives.

First:
Quote:
by Over59 Roger there is nothing new in this other than some guy trying to keep his job at DOD or CIA or NSA or ASA or AFSG or NSG or DIA or SDI or ..... We really need to learn to not get sucked in by the self serving pols in DC.
The issue with SecDef starting a new intelligence bureau is that we already have one (CIA), that if properly funded, directed, and MANAGED could and should do a superb job. If they're not (and they apparently haven't been for years) whose responsiblity is it to make it work so SecDef gets what he needs to do his job? Why would SecDef have to spend MORE citizens' tax money to start and run a second agency that merely duplicates the efforts that the first is supposed to be doing? Shouldn't those funds be used to buy soldiers, rather than a duplication of effort? Isn't it the Republican platform to have LESS government, not more?

Second:
Quote:
by Stefrobts The Stats site is a wonderful place to see the science behind the news. This article on Global Warming is very interesting. I recommend everyone take a quick look at it. It's short.

http://www.stats.org/record.jsp?type=news&ID=119

Things are never as cut & dried as we'd like.
On the Kyoto treaty and global warming et.al., I consider myself an environmentalist. I pack out what I pack in, walk when I can, do the bicycle routine, recycle, etc. etc. etc. For the past several years I have been solidly on the "stop global warming" bandwagon, and believed that the popular press was reporting solid info. And undoubtedly they thought they were. Pending disaster always sells papers. The science, it appears, is conflicted and so are the interpretations of what it shows.


Stef's comment is appropriate and timely. The jury is out on global warming, and no one is really sure whether climate is changing or exactly what we're seeing. While it's true that we, as humans, are contributing to a change in composition of the atmosphere, it's NOT clear at all what the results, if any, will be.

I think that knee-jerk reactions are never good. Let's find out what's going on as quickly as possible, and THEN decide a course of action.

Third, some general observations regarding lawlessness, assault weapons, weapons bans, and government funding and operations:

I have been in law enforcement for thirty years and as many of you know, am now a chief of police. I've worked in a major metro west-coast PD for 11 years, a rural NoCal Sheriff's department for 7 years, and now been a Chief in rural/suburban Iowa for 7 years. In my years of varied experience regarding crooks and firearms, I've seen some truths emerge. First, street crooks are cowards. They generally won't undertake a crime unless they think that they can succeed without getting hurt. Terrorists and 'patriots' are a different breed driven by idealism (regardless of how misguided) and are willing to take on authority with force, but they have in common that their power comes from their willingness to acquire and use guns to accomplish their goals against a largely unarmed victim pool.

Nearly every unfortunate (and unprecedented) incident (from the Circuit City hostage situation in Sacramento to the LA bank robbery to the 9-1-1 hijackings) could have had a very different outcome had there been armed citizens on the scene willing to take appropriate action at the onset of the incidents. Think about that for a moment. Yes, I'm suggesting that had three or four 'victims' in each situation been able to react at the onset of each situation with that amount of force necessary to overcome the resistance offered, the outcomes of those incidents would have potentially been very different.

I recognize that's a bold statement, and it's in direct opposition to the 'anti-gun' lobby. I also recognize that there would undoubtedly be unbalanced folks out there causing problems for a short time, but in short order I'd expect that we'd have one of the most well-mannered societies in history. I'd also like to add that it's NOT an unprecedented idea in the world. The Second Amendment was written to ensure an appropriate national response against invasion, not as has so often been quoted for individual gun ownership; however, Israel has for years told their people that each and every one of them is responsible for the security of the State, and that they are all soldiers in that regard. An interesting perspective in this day and age.

Guns themselves are not a problem, and frankly it's just not realistic to think that merely by legislation that guns will disappear from the U.S. civilian scene. There are just too many of them, guns are too ingrained in our history and national fabric, and too many more of all types being produced and sold every day. People who choose to do harm using guns ARE a problem, and yet we as citizens are not willing to take appropriate action, either through legislation or personal values, to stop those who want to harm us.

And last:
Quote:
by 71 Safari Well compared to $200 Bil or so on Iraq so far, it IS chicken feed.
John is absolutely right. Regardless of where you stand on the 'right' or 'wrong' of Iraq, the reality is that the current Administration is cutting domestic spending dramatically to fund the war effort. This gets back to whether or not idealistically we should be there... BUT can we continue this effort while neglecting social problems at home? What exactly ARE we trying to spread to the rest of the world: our version of Democracy which includes disputed elections, domestic homelessness, drug addiction, hunger and disease? According to Maslow's Theory of Hierarchy of Need, it's difficult to be fulfilled when you're hungry or in want of other basic human needs. 200 billion dollars, folks, would go a long way domestically to developing energy independence, providing training for folks on welfare, and pay for treatment and other social programs to help get folks off the government dole.

For a quick illustrative current event, there WERE two law enforcment welfare grants out there called the Byrne Grant and the Local Law Enforcement Block Grants that have, for the past twelve or so years funded much of the drug enforcement task force activity that has been moderately successful in taking druggies and the violent crimes associated with them out of your communities and neighborhoods. Last September, this Administration proposed redistributing those funds by rolling them into a program called "Justice Assistance Grant" or JAG. JAG cut funding to 37 rural states who most need that money and gave net increases to CA and FL. Within the past month, the Office of Management and Budget has zeroed out the new JAG line item to help pay for the war effort.

This will come home to touch each and every one of you personally in the form of increased property and violent crimes being committed in your neighborhoods by folks interested only in supporting their drug habits because the Narcotics Task Forces that were funded by those monies are going away. You will see more toxic meth lab dumps in your neighborhoods along with ther rest of the social baggage that comes with uncontrolled drug abuse. Local governments cannot afford to keep local drug task forces operational on their own budgets.

Congress passed this bill as part of an omnibus spending bill on November 24th 2004 without a hearing by the Senate or the Senate Judiciary Committee. JAG had strong bi-partisan opposition in the Senate, but was passed by a Republican majority in the House, including the Iowa House delegation.

My point to all of this is that our priorities are skewed. Once we have our house in order in our own country, our citizens are cared for, crime ISN'T rampant (and violent crimes have been on the decrease now for several years nation-wide), THEN we can begin to spend $200 billion helping other folks, but we're not there yet.

I thank you again for your indulgence. I leave you with a question... Where SHOULD our priorities as a country lie? Where SHOULD money be spent?

Roger
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Old 01-25-2005, 10:05 AM   #216
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[QUOTE=85MH325](keep in mind I'm a registered Democrat as you read through this...)

Well, coming to terms with that fact is the first step in the recovery and healing process!

First:

The sec of defense should get whatever he needs to kick the behinds of the folks not toing the line. If it cost more, it just costs more. I have no problem with making goverment bigger since I have nothing to hide. I say damn the torpedos, full steam ahead. If he starts violating the constitution, that's a whole different story, but if he violates the constitution and it's against non citizens, I also have ZERO issue with it since they are not citizens and not covered under our constitution. You think, Russia, China, North Korea, Iran, Pakistan or others are having this discussion on non-citizen rights or on broad steps to deal with a non-conventional problem?


Second:

"I consider myself an environmentalist."

Not to kick sand, cause I'm no better, but that is a very bold statement coming from a man that drives the biggest, baddest, fuel hog, SUV (V-10 Ford Excursion) on the planet and uses it to tow the largest Airstream trailer built.

I agree though with the rest of what you said 110%.

Third, "some general observations regarding lawlessness, assault weapons, weapons bans, and government funding and operations:"

No doubt that I agree 110% here too....you sure your still a Democrat?

And last:
"Where SHOULD our priorities as a country lie? Where SHOULD money be spent?"

I agree and disagree. There have been the sky is falling type comments from many non Republican groups and even a few Rebublicans. The fact is that local folks need to find some solutions on there own. The states act like a bunch of kids looking to dad for solutions, only the states are all grown up. That said, I would think that the feds do have some responsibility to fund a mandate and fund some of the state and/or county actions to make sure very rural America is covered from the "bad guys". You won't convince me that in the Suburbs or Chicago or in any metro area with a population of over 10-20k that has tax base, will feel any impact on crime as a result of funds being pulled. Hell during the Ford and Carter years where money was no doubt also scarce, we all managed just fine. If I recall you and I also have a long term bet on watts type riots based mostly on Bush's re-election and his actions, with me on the side that it isn't going to happen (by the way, I drink MGD and like 'em cold). Beer won is twice as good as beer bought, which either way uses fossil fuels in some capacity to produce.
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Old 01-25-2005, 10:32 AM   #217
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Silvertwinkie

Second:

"I consider myself an environmentalist."

Not to kick sand, cause I'm no better, but that is a very bold statement coming from a man that drives the biggest, baddest, fuel hog, SUV (V-10 Ford Excursion) on the planet and uses it to tow the largest Airstream trailer built.

I agree though with the rest of what you said 110%.
Uhhh... not so fast here Shorty... I chose the Excursion with some care toward environmental concerns. My Ex ONLY gets exercized when pulling the trailer or for long trips, not for commuting or general driving, so a single tank of gas may last three months or more! I pull down 15-16mpg unladen and around 10-11mpg towing. That, for starters, ain't bad for a 7000 lb truck with huge V-10. Last, the Ex is touted as 85% recycleable at the end of it's useful service life which, based on the durability of the 3/4 ton chassis and the reasonable care with which it's used, maintained, and stored, could be reasonably up to 25 years. It has always surprised me that Ford hasn't done a better job marketing that aspect of the Excursion.

There are real energy costs to society in automobiles of this type is in the manufacturing process and how many are built and how long they remain in service. If I choose to engage in the wasteful pursuit of owning an Airstream and choose to purchase a product once during my lifetime that will last me as long as I choose to own it, and no more replacements have to be manufactured for MY personal demand, haven't I contributed to the wise use of raw materials and the energy used to produce replacements? Don't we buy Airstream over stickies for similar product longevity?

Sorry, Eric... nice try!

Roger
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Old 01-25-2005, 10:40 AM   #218
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OK I was not going to join in but …..

Think about it, Russia went broke try to force their form of government (communism) on the rest of the world.
A person could take the GW speech on freedom and understand he (we) are going to take on the responsibility to “force” our form of government on anyone that isn’t conforming to our way of government.
Bold undertaking but one that is sure to cause this country to go broke sooner if not later.
I think the war on terror is just and noble but how much are we willing to sacrifice to take on a good portion of the world to force changes in their governments ?

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Old 01-25-2005, 10:46 AM   #219
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You can try to legit it any way you'd like, but you won't convince me Rog. It's not an attempt; it's a plain fact.

That truck is a monster and even when used as described eats more gas than the average ride. There is a reason Ford is dumping the Excursion. Not cause it was a bad truck, but it wasn't getting the PR it needed at $2 gallon and all the **true** environmental groups that screamed from the mountaintops.

There are a number of choices out there that an environmentalist could have chosen, but as in my case, we are creatures of comfort (particularly when we get older)...but you won't find be boasting myself as an environmentalist having a 3/4 Suburban 6.0L that can get equal mileage to your truck and used in the same manner, mostly for the economics of the situation.

...and just cause 85% can be recycled, doesn't mean that all 85% will for sure be recycled. Noting that 85% of the Ex is still more parts that took resources to create than any of it's counterparts.

If either of us were real environmentalists, we'd both tent and drive a Prius or other Hybrid. But we both like our comforts.

I'm gonna get you a few Greenpeace stickers to place on your Excursion.

BTW, I seem to recall John Kerry touting his speech on the environment when someone asked him why he drove a oil eating large SUV....I did get a kick out of his answers though about it. Classic do as I say, not as I do.

http://timblair.spleenville.com/archives/006607.php

http://www.ragemeister.com/Opinions2...rrys%20SUV.htm
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Old 01-25-2005, 10:59 AM   #220
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OK I was not going to join in but …..

A person could take the GW speech on freedom and understand he (we) are going to take on the responsibility to “force” our form of government on anyone that isn’t conforming to our way of government.

Garry
Garry,

I just can't find in the speech the section you are talking about. This is what I found:

"This is not primarily the task of arms, though we will defend ourselves and our friends by force of arms when necessary. Freedom, by its nature, must be chosen, and defended by citizens, and sustained by the rule of law and the protection of minorities. And when the soul of a nation finally speaks, the institutions that arise may reflect customs and traditions very different from our own.
America will not impose our own style of government on the unwilling. Our goal, instead, is to help others find their own voice, attain their own freedom and make their own way."
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Old 01-25-2005, 11:02 AM   #221
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Excursion vs. Marxism

Close, Eric, but no cigar. I'm not justifying the Excursion as an environmentalist's dream wagon, not by a long shot. It's big and it uses fuel, no argument there. And I'm not trying to portray myself as a far-left, touch nothing environmentalist. It's not the choice of vehicle thats the problem, it's the pursuit of the hobby that's entirely wasteful from an environmental standpoint. NONE of us NEEDS an Airstream or a 6000+lb truck to pull it to go 'camping'. But, since we've all chosen that path of wretched excess in our unbridled pursuit of capitalism and bourgeois lifestyle, it makes sense to me to take the least harmful alternative in so doing. My point is that I considered the options when I spent my money and tried to take the least harmful course from the choices available at the time.

Roger
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Old 01-25-2005, 11:12 AM   #222
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 85MH325
Close, Eric, but no cigar. I'm not justifying the Excursion as an environmentalist's dream wagon, not by a long shot. It's big and it uses fuel, no argument there. And I'm not trying to portray myself as a far-left, touch nothing environmentalist. It's not the choice of vehicle thats the problem, it's the pursuit of the hobby that's entirely wasteful from an environmental standpoint. NONE of us NEEDS an Airstream or a 6000+lb truck to pull it to go 'camping'. But, since we've all chosen that path of wretched excess in our unbridled pursuit of capitalism and bourgeois lifestyle, it makes sense to me to take the least harmful alternative in so doing. My point is that I considered the options when I spent my money and tried to take the least harmful course from the choices available at the time.

Roger
Still doesn't win either of us a pin for being environmentalists on ANY level which is what your initial statement said. "I consider myself an environmentalist." In fact you and I are both environmentalists of convenience which I would much more agree with, which only contributes to the problems we are talking about. Even a slight environmentalist would have made different choices (myself included). If you think that either of our trucks are the least harmful course, think again. The only way I'd agree is if one or both ran on hydrogen. Then, I'd be the first to say, YOU DA MAN (in more than the law enforcement sense). Until then, they are both belching pigs on the road contributing to the problems we are talking about. If for some reason thinking your truck is the least harmful course and makes you sleep better at night, I am very happy for you, but I'm not about to pat myself on the back for only getting the 6.0L compared to the 8.1L and say it was the least harmful.
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Old 01-25-2005, 11:30 AM   #223
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Originally Posted by Silvertwinkie
Still doesn't win either of us a pin for being environmentalists which is what your initial statement said. "I consider myself an environmentalist." In fact you and I are both environmentalists of convenience which I would much more agree with and only contributes to the problems we are talking about. Even a slight environmentalist would have made different choices (myself included).
I guess that depends on your definition of "environmentalism". Dictionary.com says:
en·vi·ron·men·tal·ism ( P ) Pronunciation Key (n-vrn-mntl-zm, -vrn-)
n.
  1. Advocacy for or work toward protecting the natural environment from destruction or pollution.
Main Entry: en·vi·ron·men·tal·ist
Pronunciation: -&l-&st
Function: noun
1 : an advocate of environmentalism
2 : one concerned about environmental quality especially of the human environment with respect to the control of pollution

Note that it doesn't say "one who is dedicated to total abstinance of changing the environment in negative ways"... I have to think that considering and pursuing the least harmful choices in the paths we choose to take qualifies both of us. IMHO, advocating responsibility in the way we use our resources IS environmentalism.

Roger
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Old 01-25-2005, 11:31 AM   #224
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BTW Rog, you know I have a LOT of respect for you and regardless of agreeing to disagree on this one or more subjects, I still that same amount of respect for you..even if you are a die hard Democrat and proud to call you a friend.

Did I mention the beer needs to be cold.
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