A Pricey Cartoon and a Madman

I had a really good cartoon by Tom Toles of the Washington Post that I planned to share with you this afternoon.  Having spent the last ten years of my accounting career in the publishing industry, I am ever conscious of copyright law, so I always try to cite or footnote passages I might use from a publication, and I request permission directly from the publisher if I want to use a lengthier portion of an article.  So, I requested permission to reprint Mr. Toles cartoon on my blog, and here is the answer I received:

“Hi Jill,

Thank you for your request.  We charge $35.00 USD + a $12.00 service fee for blog use.  Let me know how you would like to proceed.

Best regards, Raegan Carmona

Raegan Carmona

Manager of Permissions

Universal Uclick”

Needless to say, I am not sharing the cartoon with you, however if interested, you can find it at this link: Toles cartoon  (Note that I can post a link for free!)

So, on to other things.  On 22 April 2016, President Obama, along with leaders of 176 other nations, signed the Paris Agreement, an international agreement within the framework of the United Nations, to limit the effects of global climate change by controlling greenhouse gas emissions, among other things.  It is complex and would require an entire post or two to explain the details, but for now, suffice it to say it is a step in the right direction toward preserving our environment.  Among some who claim that climate change is a hoax, the Paris Agreement is not popular, but they are a very small minority.  Today, 97% of all scientists agree that global climate change is very much real, that climate-warming trends over the last century are almost certainly a result of human activities, and that it is essential that all industrialized nations take part in developing policies and technology to help prevent further damage to our atmosphere.

Yesterday, 26 May 2016, Donald Trump gave a speech in North Dakota in which he said, in part:

“President Obama has done everything he can to get in the way of American energy. He’s made life much more difficult for North Dakota, as costly regulation makes it harder and harder to turn a profit. Millions of jobs, and trillions of dollars of wealth, will be destroyed as a result. That is why our choice this November is so crucial. Here’s what it comes down to. Wealth versus poverty. President Obama’s stated intent is to eliminate oil and natural gas production in America. His policy is death by a thousand cuts through an onslaught of regulations. The Environmental Protection Agency’s use of totalitarian tactics forces energy operators in North Dakota into paying unprecedented multi-billion dollar fines before a penalty is even confirmed. America’s incredible energy potential remains untapped. It is a totally self-inflicted wound. Under my presidency, we will accomplish complete American energy independence. Imagine a world in which our foes, and the oil cartels, can no longer use energy as a weapon. But President Obama has done everything he can to keep us dependent on others. A Trump Administration will develop an America First energy plan. Here is how this plan will make America Wealthy Again: American energy dominance will be declared a strategic economic and foreign policy goal of the United States. America has 1.5 times as much oil as the combined proven resources of all OPEC countries; we have more Natural Gas than Russia, Iran, Qatar and Saudi Arabia Combined; we have three times more coal than Russia. Our total untapped oil and gas reserves on federal lands equal an estimated $50 trillion. A Trump Administration will focus on real environmental challenges, not phony ones.


“Here is my 100-day action plan:

We’re going to rescind all the job-destroying Obama executive actions including the Climate Action Plan and the Waters of the U.S. rule.

We’re going to save the coal industry and other industries threatened by Hillary Clinton’s extremist agenda.

I’m going to ask Trans Canada to renew its permit application for the Keystone Pipeline.

We’re going to lift moratoriums on energy production in federal areas

We’re going to revoke policies that impose unwarranted restrictions on new drilling technologies. These technologies create millions of jobs with a smaller footprint than ever before.

We’re going to cancel the Paris Climate Agreement and stop all payments of U.S. tax dollars to U.N. global warming programs.

Any regulation that is outdated, unnecessary, bad for workers, or contrary to the national interest will be scrapped. We will also eliminate duplication, provide regulatory certainty, and trust local officials and local residents.

Any future regulation will go through a simple test: is this regulation good for the American worker? If it doesn’t pass this test, the rule will not be approved.

Policy decisions will be public and transparent. They won’t be made on Hillary’s private email account.”

(For full annotated transcript of his speech, follow this link) Trump speech 26 May – North Dakota

Amazing, isn’t it, that in one brief speech, riddled with lies and misconceptions, he just vowed to destroy every positive step that has been made toward protecting and preserving our planet?  He plans to explore for oil and gas on lands where such processes would threaten wildlife and ecosystems, re-invest in coal mining and production, increase the burning of fossil fuels.  His ‘statistics’ have all been proven false, and his policies, as they are stated, would hasten the destruction of our ecology and the environment of the earth.  Given that the majority of nations across the globe recognize the dangers posed by greenhouse gas emissions and have banded together, via the Paris Agreement, in an effort to halt further destruction of our earth, for Donald Trump to pull out of the agreement would certainly not gain us any friends in the global community, and would make the U.S. the subject of scorn and derision. There are complexities that would make it difficult to simply withdraw from the Paris Agreement, but not impossible. Such an action would be a tremendous setback.(Note that, while he claims he will ‘cancel’ the agreement, that would be well outside his power, as he has no control over the other 176 nations who signed the agreement)

Time and space do not permit me to print the entirety of Trump’s speech in North Dakota, nor to address his various lies and misstatements, but this is as serious an issue as any facing us today, so I urge you to use the link above to read it for yourself.  U.S. citizens absolutely must see that Trump is indeed a madman who simply cannot be allowed to become president of this nation!

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