Fence Post

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Wake up and change U.S. energy policy

There has been a lot said about the current government's failure to act quickly enough to fix the oil spill.

We all need to ignore the issue of how quickly the Obama administration reacted as the question itself is patently absurd and remarkably silly. Instead the left and the middle should immediately move on to what is the opportunity of a lifetime.

The oil spill opens the door for real reform that can get the United States and all of its citizens out from under the thumb of big oil and its allies. Without going through a whole economic analysis of why unfettered multinational corporations controlling the life blood of our economy is bad, let me point out just two reasons why the U.S. should act decisively and immediately.

One, the cost of gasoline and heating oil is in reality a regressive tax that adversely and inordinately affects the lower and middle classes.

Two, allowing the multinationals to continue operating without real safety regulation and without any concern about the economic well-being of the U.S. puts the United States and its citizens in jeopardy.

Not only should there be stricter safety laws, but this is the time to change tax policy to encourage development of alternative sources of energy.

It's time for the right to admit that regulation of businesses that are essential to our well-being is a job that must be done and that only the federal government can take on that job.

It's time for the right to do the right thing even if it means admitting that environmentalists had a point about offshore drilling.

This oil spill is a wake-up call and it's time to not only cap the well, but to change the culture of government being in the pocket of big oil.

James Farruggia

Schaumburg

Corporate takeover is ruining America

When the market crashed in 1929 and FDR was elected president, he inherited much the same economic mess that Obama has inherited. With no help from Republicans he created government jobs, Social Security, reined in corporations with rules and regulations and gave power back to the people.

Unions created the strong middle class and in those days the wealthy paid as much as 90 percent of their income in taxes.

When Reagan came into office, he did away with those rules and regulations, gave tax breaks to the wealthiest and corporations thinking the market would control itself. He forgot about the human factor of greed and power corrupting.

There was a reason the Founding Fathers created a Constitution giving power to the people -- not corporations. Corporations, unconstitutionally, made corporate personhood a new law that gives them the same rights as individuals.

Corporations now own the Republican Party and the news media. They have infiltrated our government with lobbyists and people from corporations like Enron making energy policy that nearly bankrupted California, Cheney's Halliburton making billions war profiteering, and insurance companies making policy on health care. Our government has become a revolving door. They have the money to hire the best talent to brainwash us into believing that government is bad and we should have less of it; however, lack of regulation has led to the oil spill in the Gulf, the problem in Arizona, and lack of unions has led to the mine tragedy in North Carolina -- but just blame the poor, those lazy people who don't want to work. …