Question 7: What kind of policy do you believe is best for stabilizing and lowering energy costs in Oklahoma and America?
Answer: The energy industry is very important to Oklahoma, in the sense that it provides so many jobs (mine included). The policy that the government should adopt, is a policy that keeps government as far away as possible from the energy industry. I have grown to accept that certain government regulations are here to stay. Certain common sense environmental regulations that many companies failed to comply with until it was law, I completely understand. However, the government should not continue to tie the oil and natural gas industry's hands. Red tape and federal bureaucracy should not be responsible for rising energy costs. I also find it asinine that one of our nation's largest oil fields, the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR), with the size of almost 10 Oklahoma's, is practically off limits. Politicians want to free us of our dependency of foreign oil, yet they ignore the elephant in the room. In short, I feel our energy policy should be clearing the way for production, not creating obstacles.
Question 8: Do you feel the U.S. should become more involved in the new civil uprising in the Middle East?
Answer: What is happening in the Middle East right now is different than what happened in Afghanistan and Iraq. These were countries being ruled by terrorist sponsoring dictators, but were facing no opposition within the country. What is happening in Egypt, Libya and Tunisia are matters that are taking place between the people and their government. It is an internal matter that really is none of our business, aside from the business dealings we have with the countries. Our main goal in Libya for instance, is to ensure all Americans who were working there are safe and out of harm's way. And since the government has already taken measures into providing their safety, our goal for now is finished. We now must wait and see how this uprising turns out. Should the Libyans begin to face the horrors that the citizens of Somalia faced in the early '90s, where over 100,000 were systematically starved to death, we as the leaders of the free world must do what we can to help the people. Yet we also must learn from history that taking sides in matters that do not directly involve us, can lead to trouble in the future. Take Iraq and Afghanistan for example. We supplied logistical aid to both of these countries. We sided with Afghanistan when the Soviets invaded, in order to help win the Cold War. And regarding Iraq, we again chose what we thought was the lesser of two evils by helping Saddam against Iran. Therefor, we must use caution when it comes to helping either side of the conflicts. We cannot let these same problems of the past fester again at our expense.
Question 9: How do you feel about the collective bargaining battle that has taken place in Wisconsin and other states?
Answer: I applaud the state congressmen of Wisconsin who stayed and voted. They faced down an angry mob, held to their republican (lower case "r" on purpose) duties, and truly represented the people who voted for them and the state as a whole. What we saw from the Democrats who fled to Illinois, was a political temper tantrum. They could not get everything they wanted, so instead of being grown ups and accepting the fact that elections have consequences, they ran away. I do not feel that the Democrats were cheated, because they had their chance of staying in Madison and debating. Instead they tried to force the majority holding Republicans to give in to Big Union, and go against the people who made them into the majority. As for the unions and teachers, I honor and respect their right to peaceful (though often hate-filled rhetoric) demonstration. I have more of a problem with the union boss thugs who have so many public officials (our President included) in their pockets. The main problem I had with the protesters, is that they really seem to miss the big picture. The issue was not completely an anti-union issue. The fact that the state of Wisconsin is on its way to bankruptcy is the big picture. The protesters seem to be demanding more than the state can provide, which is not fair to the tax payers. Overall I feel that the Republicans who voted for the bill made the right choice, by putting the future of the state ahead of possible political harm.
This is the end of my interview with myself. More questions will be answered directly and indirectly in future blogs to come. Though my schedule keeps me from making a blog every day, I will do my best to keep at it.