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February 2010
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March 2010

An interesting proposal related to off-shore drilling

Writing on HuffPo today, Raymond J. Learsyargues that we need to create a National Oil Trust to oversee the drilling that President Obama today authorized.  Here is an excerpt:

We are at a crossroads for President Obama to seize the moment by establishing our own National Oil Trust. It could be modeled after our own experience with the TVA and that of the world's third largest energy exporter, Norway's National Oil Trust.

Norway's Oil Trust's stated objective is to contribute and create the greatest public value for Norwegian society from Norway's oil and gas deposits. Profits from the Norway's oil and gas operations accrue to the Norwegian Government's Pension Fund and is invested in conservative bonds and investments.

Were we to have a similar program, the trust could be mandated to direct its revenues toward developing alternative energy programs and to expand mass transportation, thereby becoming a cornerstone for energy independence and combating climate change.

Death from police brutality?

EscapeOKC reports that Keith Kimmel, LGBT rights activist, was found dead today. 

Just this weekend he had filed a formal complaint against the Tulsa Police Department alledging brutality and accusing them of committing a hate crime.  You can read his formal complaint, and see pictures of his bruised body, here.

One speculates.  If the autopsy finds that the death did result from the alledged police brutality, what will the response be?  And how will this impact the debate going on currently at the State legislature over hate crimes and the attempt to exempt state law enforcement from participating with federal authorities in prosecuting hate crimes in the state?  We were lobbying on this very issue today!

My Holy Week Playlist

What are you listening to this Holy Week?  Here's what I just put into the cd player to start putting me in the proper mood:

1)  The Best of Bach -- particularly for the St. Matthew Passion and Jesu Joy of Man's Desiring
2)  The Durufle Requiem
3)  The Mozart Requiem
4)  The Rutter Requiem
5)  And Saviour -- an album by a bunch of 1990's CCM stars that is one of my very few albums like that

I'm sure later in the week I'll add "When We No Longer Touch" by the Turtle Creek Chorale.

Increases in Medicaid

Because of the mandates in the new health care law, the state may see 1/3 of the population enroll for Medicaid, which may cost Oklahoma up to $93 million a year.  Currently Oklahoma has a pretty minimal Medicaid program.  I wonder if some Oklahomans will second-guess their opposition to the public option or other proposals which would have increased options instead of putting so many people on the state rolls?  I am glad we will finally have to pony up and start providing the sort of social services that we should have been providing.