This week marks the 40th anniversary of the Staggers Rail Act of 1980, which deregulated American freight…
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Happy 40th to the Staggers Rail Act, Which Deregulated and Saved the U.S. Rail Industry

This week marks the 40th anniversary of the Staggers Rail Act of 1980, which deregulated American freight rail and saved it from looming oblivion.

At the time of passage, the U.S. economy muddled along amid ongoing malaise, and our rail industry teetered due to decades of overly bureaucratic sclerosis.  Many other domestic U.S. industries had disappeared, and our railroads faced the same fate.  But by passing the Staggers Rail Act, Congress restored a deregulatory approach that in the 1980s allowed other U.S. industries to thrive.  No longer would government determine what services railroads could offer, their rates or their routes, instead restoring greater authority to the railroads themselves based upon cost-efficiency.

Today, U.S. rail flourishes even amid the coronavirus pandemic…[more]

October 13, 2020 • 11:09 PM

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Global Warming Dead-Enders Imitate Gilligan’s Island Print
By Timothy H. Lee
Thursday, February 11 2010
Today, the dejected cult of global warming dead-enders increasingly resembles the fanatical Japanese sailor of [a humorous Gilligan’s Island] episode, fighting a futile battle.

Decades after Japan surrendered to conclude World War II, legend persisted of abandoned Japanese soldiers scattered across the Pacific, fighting a war they’d already lost. 

This week, desperate global warming alarmists did a brilliant imitation amid record winter storms. 

The legend of fanatical Japanese dead-enders actually had a basis in fact, including the March 1974 surrender of Lt. Hiroo Onoda from Lubang Island in the Philippines.  Lieutenant Onoda tenaciously refused to come out of hiding until Japanese authorities literally brought his former commanding officer to order his surrender. 

Incidents such as that became so ingrained within American folklore that they even served as the basis of a humorous Gilligan’s Island episode in 1964.  Entitled So Sorry, My Island Now, Vito Scotti played a Japanese sailor unaware of the war’s end, who captured the castaways until the bumbling Gilligan ultimately rescued them. 

Today, the dejected cult of global warming dead-enders increasingly resembles the fanatical Japanese sailor of that episode, fighting a futile battle. 

After all, an entire decade of climate data has undermined the global warming movement, including temperature declines since 1998 despite rapid industrialization in China, India and other developing nations.  Further, the embarrassing recent “Climategate” scandal has exposed the fraud of climate scientists who violated British law by concealing data, sabotaged the careers of scientists who disputed their claims and targeted scholarly journals that contradicted the global warming orthodoxy.  And last month, a United Nations claim that the Himalayan glaciers could melt by 2035 itself evaporated when the researcher behind it admitted that it was completely concocted. 

To top it off this week, the entire world witnessed a record snowstorm that utterly paralyzed Washington, D.C. 

In the span of four days, two separate storms named “Snowmageddon” by not-so-affectionate D.C. residents dumped over three feet of snow on the capital.  These storms followed December’s original “Snowmageddon,” whose icepacks still hadn’t completely melted away.  Collectively, this winter’s D.C. snowfall reached a record 54.9 inches, thereby surpassing the record set over a century ago when the winter of 1898-99 witnessed 54.4 inches. 

In the face of this inconvenient truth, Al Gore, the disgraced Emperor Hirohito of the global warming hysteria movement, disappeared rather than face the heat, so to speak. 

Like the scattered Japanese soldiers, however, Gore’s loyal minions continued their fanatical fight. 

Take Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., for instance. 

In a Los Angeles Times commentary dated September 24, 2008, just over one year ago, Kennedy alleged that man-made global warming has changed the climate so dramatically that winter snow has almost disappeared from the D.C. area: 

“In Virginia, the weather also has changed dramatically.  Recently arrived residents in the northern suburbs, accustomed to today’s anemic winters, might find it astonishing to learn that there were once ski runs on Baltimore Hill in McLean, with a rope tow and a local ski club.  Snow is so scarce today that most Virginia children probably don’t own a sled.” 

When confronted this week about his 2008 assertion, a frustrated and embarrassed Kennedy lashed out by pulling the Rush card: 

“Idiots on the right like Rush like to point to any cold weather anomalies as proof that global warming doesn’t exist.” 

Even more embarrassing for the global warming holdouts, they can’t even get their stories straight on whether climate change is making our winters drier or wetter. 

In a spectacle so farcical that it belonged on Saturday Night Live rather than MSNBC, host Dylan Ratigan decided to play kamikaze rather than take cover and avoid the issue.  With a straight face and apparent earnestness, Ratigan argued that D.C.’s record snowfall was caused by – you guessed it – global warming: 

“Here’s the problem:  these ‘Snowpocalypses’ that have been going through D.C. and other extreme weather events are precisely what climate scientists have been predicting, fearing and anticipating because of global warming.” 

Climate scientists other than Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., that is. 

So Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. claims that man-made global warming is causing snow-free D.C. winters.  Simultaneously, MSNBC’s Dylan Ratigan claims that man-made global warming is causing record D.C. snowstorms. 

Similarly, global warming alarmists claimed in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina that we’d witness an onslaught of similar catastrophes.  Since then, however, we’ve seen an abnormally low number of hurricanes. 

But in the end, none of this really matters to the climate change hysterics.  Any element of larger intellectual coherence has disappeared following Climategate, global temperature declines over the past decade and record winter storms. 

All that remains are isolated, abandoned foot soldiers fighting their own contradictory battles, just like the legendary Japanese soldiers who refused to surrender long after their war was lost. 

Question of the Week   
Which one of the following was the first 20th century presidential candidate to call for a Presidential Debate?
More Questions
Quote of the Day   
 
"In nominating Barrett to the Supreme Court, [President Trump] kept his promise by choosing an undaunted originalist -- someone who interprets the Constitution based on the understanding held by its ratifiers.Trump's most profound effect on the Constitution will come when she and the other Trump Justices apply that originalism to the questions of liberty and equality."Read entire article here.…[more]
 
 
—John C. Yoo, Heller Professor Law at U.C. Berkeley School of Law
— John C. Yoo, Heller Professor Law at U.C. Berkeley School of Law
 
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