I heard a forecast that oil prices will likely drop to $25/barrel sometime early next year. With that in mind, take a look at the chart above from gasbuddy.com. The red line is the price of oil, the blue line is the price of gasoline. The current national average for a gallon of gas is $1.77. If your local price is 30 cents or so below the national average like mine is, it's possible you could see gas sell for under a dollar per gallon sometime early next year.
Some other interesting thing about this chart:
Notice how much faster the oil prices rose compared to the gas prices the last two years. This is why prices are plummeting right now. Oil prices can't sustain a "gap" as large as the one that began in 2007 for very long. What were seeing right now is a price correction - capitalism at work. It's too bad my local government didn't realize this when they signed a contract to lock-in gas prices for local police, fire, and maintenance vehicles at $3.45/gallon earlier this year! Yikes! When a products' price is at a historic high, it's probably not a good idea to lock yourself into that price.
Also, can you believe the national average for gasoline was $4/gallon five months ago?! Next time you buy gas, double the price you pay in your head. You would have thought that price was a great deal in July.
Check out this post from townhall.com:
How Sarah Could Run for the Senate
Posted by: Amanda Carpenter at 3:19 PM
As we wait for the final results to come in about Ted Steven's Senate race many of you have been wondering about Sarah Palin's options for the slot.I have all the relevant Alaskan state law statutes in front of me so let me run down the scenarios for you.
SCENARIO 1) If Ted Stevens loses, Democrat Mark Begich becomes Alaska's new senator. Palin can challenge Lisa Murkowski for her seat in 2010. (This would be fitting since Palin unseated Murkowski's father. It would be interesting to watch Palin go after the daughter, too.)SCENARIO 2)Ted Stevens wins and then the Senate refuses to seat him. Or, Stevens does the right thing and resigns.If this happens and Palin wanted to get his seat she would be best off temporarily appointing someone else and running for the seat straight up in a special election. This is because Alaskan law requires a special election and while Palin may be able to temporarily appoint herself the laws on this are too new and confusing to mess with.Regardless of whether she runs or not, Palin would need to call for a special election between 60 and 90 days AFTER the vacancy occurs. Now, about the temporary appointment. It's complicated. Alaskans passed a ballot measure in 2004 that said the Govenor is allowed to call for a special election, but NOT make a temporary appointment. The Alaskan state legislature passed something on this in 2004 as well. And, it's at odds with what the voters did. The legislature passed a measure that says "When a vacancy occurs in the office of United States senator, the governor may, at least five days after the date of the vacancy but within 30 days after the date of the vacancy, appoint a qualified individual to fill the vacancy temporarily until the results of the special election called to fill the vacancy are certified."You got that? The ballot initiative says she can't do it, but the legislature says she can. No one knows which measure would win in the end because it's never been tested.But, it wouldn't make a lot of sense for her to appoint herself at all. That would be a touch "diva." Appointing the place holder and then running honestly would be much better and, I'm guessing, more Palin's style.I was on a conference call with conservative activists this afternoon and a leader from Alaska said, "If she runs, she wins."
There is a lot of speculation that John Kerry could be Barack Obama's Secretary of State. His primary competition seems to be from New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson.
Also, it appears Alaskan Senator Ted Stevens will be reelected to the Senate despite his recent conviction on bribery-charges. Alaskans would rather elect a criminal than a liberal. :) The Senate will certainly refuse to seat Stevens which leaves his Senate seat open. Governor Sarah Palin could run in a special election for this Senate position. Alaskans may very well encourage her to do so. As a Senator, Palin would keep her national presence. She would also be in a better position to make a 2012 presidential run.
There is another option for Palin. She could finish out her term as governor and run against fellow Republican Lisa Murkowski in 2010 for Alaska's other Senate seat. Lisa Murkowski was appointed by her father, Governor Frank Murkowski, after he resigned from his Senate seat to become Governor in 2002. Frank Murkowski's appointment of his daughter was extremely unpopular. Alakans responded by voting to strip appointment power from all future governors. Alaskans disdain over Frank Murkowski's appointment led to his defeat against Palin in 2006. Lisa Murkowski managed to escape the public outcry and was reelected in 2004. Wouldn't it be odd if Palin defeated her second Murkowski in 2010 for the U.S. Senate?
Gotta love Alaskan politics! :)
The story of Barack Obama's rise to the presidency is truly remarkable. Despite my differing views, I couldn't help but smile at the symbolic moment last night. Interestingly, America has become the first predominately white nation to elect a black leader in recorded history. Yes, you read that right. You would think we were the last nation to do this based on the talk out of Europe. That is something to be proud of.
I hope you will join me in praying for Barack Obama. He needs wisdom just like any other president. Romans 13 exorts us to be supportive of him and his authority. For some perspective, Paul wrote this passage while Nero was in power and was burning Christians to light his gardens at night. That's commitment to pray for your leaders!!
I may still disagree with Barack Obama in principle but I will honor him and his position. There is nothing gained from speaking ill of those in authority over us.
On Friday, Zogby polled John McCain at 48% and Obama at 47%. This same poll showed Obama up by nearly double-digits last week. It's just one day, but it is clear that as we go into the final weekend of the election, John McCain is quickly gaining on Obama. The main voting groups that are trending towards McCain are Catholics, young/first-time voters, conservative women, and blue-collar men. The conservative women and Catholics moving to McCain seem to have been unaware of Obama's positions on abortion and marriage. The young/first-time voters and blue-collar men started moving towards McCain after Joe the Plumber asked Obama his famous question.
The fact is, there are a lot of Americans who have been saying they support Obama but have no idea what Obama believes. That will change for several of them this weekend as they begin to Google each candidate in order to make their final decision. One AP poll suggests as many as 1 in 7 voters could change their minds before election day. This should benefit John McCain because a larger chunk of Obama's support seems to come from voters unaware of his policies.
I hope undecided voters find are these two clips as they mull over their choice this weekend. The first is the Governator campaigning for John McCain in Ohio. It's really powerful to hear how wonderful America is from someone who experienced the worst of socialism and communism. The last clip is from an Iraq war veteren. American soldiers are supporting John McCain over Obama 4-to-1. This clip explains why.
You can now go to www.johnmccain.com, fill out a brief information form, and begin calling fellow voters from your very own phone. It's easy, the script is provided, and you could make a major difference! This is great for all of you stay-at-home-moms who can't take your kids down to your local McCain/Palin office.
I've been debating about posting a link to this article all week. Understand that I am not sold on the argument by any means. I was more than skeptical at first. However, as I've researched the theory, it is obvious the claims aren't baseless. The author has a history of conspiracy theories. As with any such researcher, sometimes his theories have been proven dead-on accurate and other times they are completely off-base. This researcher is at least making sure he can reasonably back-up his theory.
There are two things that finally convinced me to post this. First off, regardless of whether or not you think Bill Ayers had anything to do with Obama's book, "Dreams of my Father," it's obvious this book was several reading levels above anything else Obama has written, including his more recent book, "Audacity of Hope." I don't know that Ayers is the ghostwriter behind "Dreams," but there seems to be one. "Dreams" is easily at a 12th grade reading level. That's why many critics hailed it as the best written work by a politician in our generation. Obama's other books, essays, and articles are generally considered readable by an 8th or 9th grader. People that study this kind of thing for a living say "Dreams" is in the 95th percentile of reading difficulty while Obama's other works range between 50th and 60th percentile. I suppose it's possible "Dreams" is kind of a "one-hit wonder" of the literary world or maybe "Audacity of Hope" was Obama's sophomore slump? It seems to me though that music is a little more hit-and-miss than literature. Either way, I find the differences between Obama's first book and everything else he's written suspect.
The other reason I decided to finally blog about this is that it is likely to hit the mainstream press soon. It could be the so-called "October Surprise" of this election. Jack Cashill, the primary researcher of this theory, said in an interview yesterday that there are congressmen prepared to bring this theory to the forefront as early as Monday. We'll see. My guess is they'll wait to see how Joe the Plumber pans out first.
Make no mistake, if this theory hits the mainstream press, we will witness an unprecedented backlash from the Democrats and the press. Deservedly so, because if proven true, McCain will win the election. People are giving Obama the benefit of the doubt on Ayers. If Ayers really helped write "Dreams," Obama will face an unprecedented backlash that will cost him the election and possibly his political career. Vice-versa if this theory hits the press and is quickly debunked, it could effectively end the McCain campaign. There's a lot at at stake here. Don't believe for a second that Obama and McCain aren't completely aware of this theory even though the press is sitting on it.
My prediction is Joe Wurzelbacher, better known as Joe the Plumber, will change the presidential race. He represents middle-class, mid-west, hard-working entrepreneurs. In other words, me and mostly everyone I know. Joe has worked in the plumbing business for many years. He works 10 - 12 hours a day and is a single parent of a 13 year old boy. He works hard because his goal is to buy the business he works for or one similar to it. He appears to live modestly, within his means, in an attempt to save money for his son's future. The small business he would like to buy has around 8 employees. It has a net profit of roughly 250k to 280k per year. Joe did his own research on Barack Obama's tax plan. It appeared to him that this business was going to see a 30% tax increase under Obama's plan, roughly $80k/year. He got concerned about this and decided to attend a Barack Obama rally near his home town. By luck, Barack Obama passed by Joe after his speech. Joe had his opportunity to find out the truth from Barack Obama about his tax plan. Would all of his hard work for his son, all the hours really pay off, or was it just going to be sucked up by Obama's administration. Here's the exchange and some commentary:
Joe quickly became a symbol of all entrepreneurs across the country and the star of last nights debate.
Before going on, let's debunk some of Obama's charges here. First off, it is true that 95 - 98% of businesses make under $250k, especially when you include lemonade stands, garage sales, and lawn mowing services run by 13 year olds. The point is, most businesses that make under $250k employ one person, the owner. A business that nets $250k or more employs roughly anywhere from 4 to 8 employees. How many businesses can you think of that employ four employees or more? Everyone of these businesses will see a tax increase under Obama. Somehow, Obama thinks this won't effect the people who work for these companies. Well, these businesses are going to have to cut somewhere aren't they?
I just don't get it. If Obama really thinks this is the worst it's been since the Depression, which there's ample evidence it's not even close, then why tax anyone more? Why tax nearly all employers across the country? Their income doesn't grow on trees. If they're taxed more, they'll lay more people off. Herbert Hoover used this model during a recession and it led to the Great Depression a few years later.
One more thing, Exon Mobile pays $26 billion in taxes per year. That's more than the bottom 50% of American taxpayers combined. That's more money than all the tax payers in some smaller US states!
Back to Joe the Plumber... in all seriousness, he has the potential to change the results of the race for president. He symbolizes hard-working entrepreneurs everywhere. He represents the American Dream.
Here are some interviews he gave today. Pretty good for a plumber!
REPORTER: What do you hope for your son's future?
WURZELBACHER: Not to have to pay $10 trillion back. I mean come on now. Social Security is a joke. I have parents. I don't need another set of parents called the government. You know, let me take my money and invest it how I please. Social Security, I've never believed it, I don't like it I hate that it's forced on me. You know, as far as for my son, I want him to live in america that he's proud of, I'm tired of people doubting america. saying that we're the bad country. I mean that upsets me and my friends greatly. you know, we are the greatest country in the world. Stop apologizing for it. I mean really, I get real mad about that I'm not sorry for being american. I'm not sorry for having the things i have. I've worked for them. I'm not sorry their I wish our borders were closed and you have to come through in a legal manner. I'm not sorry for any of those things, I'm not sorry that we're in Iraq. My friend notice military that come back and have told me the thanks that they've received for us being there. It doesn't get enough play. We've liberated another country. freedom, things that every one of you guys take for credit -- take for granted. Everything that Americans take for granted, these guys haven't had it, now they've got that's an incredible thing. That's almost, I don't know if you are Christians or not, but that's like somebody coming to Jesus and being saved. These guys have freedom. Our guys here that are poverty stricken have cell phones. Those people over there, they have one pair of pants and a shirt. You know, what we've done over there is an incredible thing. Has it kept us safe? Absolutely. I believe in that 100%. Wmds or not, I don't care, we took the fight to them, we've done a pretty good job there. Could have done better? Yeah, sure, but It's easy being an arm chair quarterback. Hindsight they say is 20/20. I call it x-ray vision. So i'm like i said, proud of our military and proud what we've done over there. so that's pretty much the main thing there....
REPORTER: Not to hammer this too much, but being local, we're curious what your ties are here. I know we talked about it a little bit. where you were born and all that kind of stuff?
WURZELBACHER: I was born here. Toledo hospital. No, I'm sorry, St. Charles. I only found that out when I was 18. I thought i was born in the South and raised southern. I found out I was born in toledo. That took me back for a second. Raised down south in Florida. We called it L.A., lower Alabama. ...
REPORTER: Your family is from here?
WURZELBACHER: Yeah, for the most part.
REPORTER: Was your dad born here?
WURZELBACHER: He's actually from cincinnati.
REPORTER: That's where you get the bengals from.
WURZELBACHER : Yes.
REPORTER: Then you came back six years ago. who else is still here?
WURZELBACHER: My mom and dad are still here. I have aunts and uncles out in point place. so i've got a pretty good family here. we're all real close. We're together just about every other weekend during the summer having a barbecue somewhere....
REPORTER: If you say you'll be here for a long time, you anticipate taking over the business, would you ever run for office locally?
WURZELBACHER: You know, it sounds cool. but I really don't know what that entails. I don't know what kind of sacrifices would have to be made. I'm bagging on the politicians a little bit, but there are sacrifices they make and I don't know what all that entails. I'm sure it's difficult to a degree.
REPORTER: Do you think county commissioner?
WURZELBACHER: I have no thoughts on that at all right now. I'm just happy being a plumber. I'm about beat. what's that?
WURZELBACHER: You know, i'm still warm from my workout earlier. REPORTER: Do you think senator mccain will stop by your house?
WURZELBACHER: I asked the campaign if he would....
REPORTER: They haven't reached out to you since this started?
WURZELBACHER: They called me and asked me to attend one of their rally's, but I'll be in new york over the weekend, so I haven't.
REPORTER: Have you seen Kevin Costner's ""swing vote""?
WURZELBACHER: I haven't seen that movie yet. I'm too busy working.
REPORTER: What does your wife or girlfriend think about all this?
WURZELBACHER: I don't have one, so I couldn't tell you.
REPORTER: What about your boy?
WURZELBACHER: My son is excited. He's jacked. He got to do a couple of interviews this morning. He and his friend, I imagine that's cool being 13 and saying you're on tv and your friends are seeing you. So my son is really, really happy about it. That's about the extent of that. all right, you guys are done. Thank you, guys, I really appreciate it.
Here's an interview with Diane Sawyer. It's pretty obvious she's never run a business. :) I'm struck by how she feels the need to defend Obama's plan to a plumber. By the way, the 3% increase is just for businesses at $250k. As a business makes more, Obama takes more, all the way up to 30%. What's the point of making more if the government takes it away?
Diane Sawyer: "Well I just want to ask you now about the issue that was raised because it's been a little confusing to me as I tried to sort it out here. To get straight here, you're not taking home $250,000 now, am I right?" Joe Wurzelbacher: "No. No. Not even close."
Sawyer: "And you were you asking -- about the prospect, the hope that someday you would make $250,000, and you were saying you didn't want that to be taxed?"
Wurzelbacher: "Well, exactly. Exactly. I mean not that I don't want to be taxed. You have to be taxed. But to -- just because you work a little harder to have a little bit more money taken from you, I mean, that's scary. You know as opposed to other people. I worked hard for it. Why should I be taxed more than other people?"
Sawyer: "Well if people making $250,000 should not be taxed additionally -- by the way, it's 3% from 36% to 39% under Senator Obama's plan. If those people should not be taxed additionally, even though they're in the top 5% of America, what about people who make $1 million? Or $5 million?"
Wurzelbacher: "Well, I mean, quite honestly, why should they be penalized for being successful. I mean, that's what you're telling me. That's what it sounds like you're saying. That's wrong. Because you're successful, you have to pay more than everybody else? We all live in this country. It's a basic right. And Obama wants to take that basic right and penalize me for it, is what it comes down to. That's a very socialist view and it's incredibly wrong. I mean, $250,000 now. What if he decides, well you know $150,000, you're pretty rich too. Let's go ahead and lower it again. You know it's a slippery slope. When's it going to stop?"
Amen! Here's to Joe the Plumber for Secretary of Commerce! :) Get him on the campaign trail! He can speak right before Sarah Palin.
John McCain said a few minutes ago at his first rally since last night's debate that although he fared "pretty well," "Joe the plumber was the winner of the debate." John McCain shouted, "Joe's the man!" to a thunderous applause.
John McCain already has a new ad out that features Joe's converation with Obama.
Any doubt we're going to be hearing about Joe the Plumber all the way up to November 4th? Or that our kids will be reading about him in the history books? We will if John McCain wins.
-New Gallup poll shows a 2 point race.
-Former Clinton advisor Dick Morris predicted on Sean Hannity's radio show that Obama's "spread the wealth around" quote will be one of the most well-known quotes in political history.
You've gotta be kidding me! I guess this is the natural progression of feminism. Do you think this eats away at his support from women 18 - 25? Here's the link.
Here's an awesome online game I found on Matt Lewis blog at townhall.com! McCain calls down bombs from the skies, Obama will pummel with his doves of peace, Biden shoots feet out of his mouth, and Palin has an assault rifle. Whoever came up with this has a good sense of humor!