In this issue

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review June 8, 2008 / 5 Sivan 5768

Foreign climates

By Debra J. Saunders

Debra J. Saunders
Printer Friendly Version
Email this article

http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Let me say this for Our Betters in Europe: Not only do they pay obscenely high gasoline taxes, and hence prices at the pump, but also, at least until recently, they've seemed happy to do so.

Don't think that Europeans didn't get a kick out of the outrage that followed after prices at American pumps surpassed $4 per gallon. When European visitors fill tanks for rented cars in America, they feel like they hit the jackpot. In May, thanks to high taxes, gasoline prices hit $8.49 per gallon in the United Kingdom and a whopping $9.89 per gallon in the Netherlands.

With worldwide demand pushing up oil prices, the day may be near when Western Europeans decide they're paying too much for petrol, merci beaucoup. In the United Kingdom, France, Italy and Spain, there have been protests staged by truck drivers, fishermen and angry consumers against high gas taxes.

So what's this column about? I would never advocate raising American gas taxes to the levels levied abroad. This is a long-distance nation; a switch to European-style gas taxes would kill the American economy. But when you look at how many Americans reacted to $4-a-gallon gas — including people who say they want to curb energy use — you have to respect how Europeans enunciated a set of goals — less congestion, less pollution, more public transit — and agreed that everybody has to pay to achieve those goals. They don't just dump the burden on smokers and "the rich," and many Europeans are proud that they pay through the nose for gas.

Back in America, a different dynamic is at play. Many voters say they want to fight global warming, while everyone wants to increase America's energy independence. Yet somehow many Americans seem to think that they are entitled to expect politicians to deliver greenhouse-gas reductions and energy independence — along with cheap gas and big cars. Politicians duly tell voters that they will pass laws to reduce energy consumption, and voters like what they hear — in part because they think they won't have to pay more at the pump or think about fuel efficiency at the car dealership.

After gas prices began to spike in April, presumptive GOP presidential nominee John McCain proposed a summer holiday on the 18.4 cents-per-gallon federal gas tax — even though few economists expected a tax holiday to yield a commensurate reduction in prices at the pump. Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton later picked up the proposal. To his credit, Democratic candidate Barack Obama refused to play that game.

The worst part: McCain and Clinton have said that they want to sharply reduce greenhouse gases and decrease America's dependence on foreign oil. You don't get there with cheap gasoline. You get there by curbing energy use, which higher prices will do.

Or you get there by increasing supply. Instead, McCain and Obama support Congress' refusal to allow drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, as well as bans on new drilling off the coasts of California and Florida. They say they support energy independence — while they support policies that guarantee more importation of foreign oil.

If there has been some progress, then it is with nuclear power, which can generate cheap energy without emitting greenhouse gases. McCain understands that: "We're never going to really significantly reduce greenhouse-gas emissions unless nuclear power is a major component" of America's energy supply. And McCain is right. Obama says he wants to explore nuclear power — which, I suppose, beats an outright rejection.

All is not rosy on the other side of the Atlantic. Global demand may increase prices to a point that forces European countries to give consumers a break by lowering taxes.

Also, most European Union nations will not reduce greenhouse-gas emissions enough to meet the target they agreed to in the 1997 Kyoto global warming pact. Instead, they are calling new meetings and agreeing to tougher goals, like cutting emissions in half by 2050 — and then patting themselves on the back for setting harder goals, which they won't meet.

Of course, you can't just pass a pact to reduce energy consumption years into the future. And you can't reduce energy consumption by fiat, and without any sacrifice. Fiats and feckless pacts don't reduce energy use, people do.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

Comment JWR contributor Debra J. Saunders's column by clicking here.

Debra J. Saunders Archives

© 2007, Creators Syndicate