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Tony Snow - courtesy AP


Former White House Press Secretary Tony Snow died early yesterday morning (Saturday, July 12th, 2008).

While this is not a particularly huge event in the broad scope of history; it is most certainly worthy of a bit of discussion, especially due to the fact that this man is being disrespected all over by the ignorant, mainly here on the internet.

These commentators seem to feel that Tony Snow somehow isn't a good person due to their political differences.

I suppose that I shouldn't be surprised by the ignorance of some people, considering the way they treat everyone that disagrees with them, even on issues that are not in any way political.

Still, I find it quite saddening, as the great majority of these people have no idea what kind of person Tony Snow was, they're too ignorant to do any research on him, they're too ignorant to care.

They would rather spout their political ideologies and demonize the man after his death. It really shows their character.

Having actually had the opportunity to speak with Tony Snow, I can honestly say that he seemed like nothing less than a good person to me.

Not only was he a good person, but he had several interesting political stances that differentiated him from many other people in his political party.

Simply because of his association with the Bush administration he has been unfairly judged and labeled. The fact is that he disagreed with many decisions of the current administration.

Take a look at some of the articles that he has written. While I certainly don't agree with everything in them, some of his opinions and beliefs are interesting, and they are quite different from the beliefs and opinions that many of his current detractors believe he held.

Not only was he a good guy, quite different from how many people are currently portraying him; but he was a loyal public servant, and by all accounts a devoted family man. All of which are attributes that should be respected in a person, sadly some have allowed politics to cloud their vision - making such features difficult to see.

With that said: No matter what your feelings towards him are, we should all be able to agree that any article regarding Tony Snow deserves nothing less than a R.I.P. and wishes of strength for the family that he leaves behind.

There was a great article by Thane Rosenbaum in the Wall Street Journal today. The article is entitled The President Has Kept Us Safe. In the article he goes on to discuss how he believes that our President has kept us safe from terrorists in the nearly 7 years since 9/11. Here is my commentary on the article:

I, as Mr. Rosenbaum, also did not vote for Bush in 2004 (I wasn't of age in 2000), but regardless of whom I voted for, President Bush was reelected and I accepted that choice. I've never talked badly about him at all; I realize that he has an extremely difficult job, much more difficult than I can even imagine I am sure.

That doesn't mean that I support absolutely everything that the President and his administration have done, as the article mentions the Patriot Act as an example: I certainly don't agree with our government infringing on the rights and the privacies of our nations citizens, in fact I am very much against it; but I can at the very least understand why such measures were taken. They were undoubtedly put into place to protect the American people, not to hurt them. I also do not believe that they are wire-tapping my telephone or reading my messages.

I was also in New York on 9/11, and it's absolutely correct that the people had a completely different mindset at that time. I can clearly remember the most liberal people that I knew, people who now support Barack Obama, suggesting that our country simply attack other nations without any evidence at all against them, nations in the middle east, simply because they may have had something to do with the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

Those very same people quite suddenly changed their tune as the years passed; now they're against the war in Iraq and think that it was a terrible idea from the very beginning. They're vehemently supporting Barack Obama and the Democrats, and they trash our President every chance that they get.

Now you could make the argument that the people that I speak with are simply ignorant, but if you actually read some of the comments made by Barack Obama followers right here on the internet, you can see that the people that I speak with are not much different from any other Barack Obama follower.

The article is absolutely correct in saying that the winds of change take to the American people as a hurricane takes to a wind chime. They forget that not even 7 short years ago they were the very thing that they are now so against. They are the ultimate hypocrisy.

So this whole gas tax issue has been popular lately; since John McCain and Hillary Clinton both stated that removing the tax on gasoline and other fuels would be something that they would do, and something that they believe would be good for Americans; while Barack Obama opposed the idea.

I'm not going to argue whether I believe John McCain, Barack Obama, or Hillary Clinton is correct in their stance and their beliefs on the issue. What I am going to address is what exactly all of these tax payer dollars in fuel tax revenue are supposed to be going to:

You may have seen the word hypothecation used in reference to the gas tax; what that means is that the revenues from the motor fuel tax are supposed to go directly towards the infrastructure used by motor vehicles, such as roads, bridges and highways; as well as to help with the infrastructure for the fuels themselves.

Many people's main argument against both John McCain's and Hillary Clinton's idea to relieve the American people of this motor fuel tax for the summer has been that this money is indeed going towards the repair and upkeep of our roads, bridges and highways; and why would we not want better and safer roads, bridges and highways.

Yet just last summer we had two different bridges collapse right here in the United States; including the absolutely devastating Minneapolis I-35W Bridge in Minneapolis, Minnesota; which sadly cost the lives of 13 innocent Americans and hurt at least 60 more. A horrible and unnecessary travesty, that undoubtedly could have and should have been prevented.

Several independent research institutions have also pointed out several other bridges in need of repair; as well as vast stretches of other infrastructure that is in need of upkeep. So where is all of this tax money going if not on this very necessary infrastructure maintenance?

In fiscal year 2005, nearly 36 Billion Dollars in revenue from the Motor Fuel Tax was received by state and local governments across the United States. An additional 18.4 cents per gallon in Federal Tax is also currently charged; which is also the tax that the three Presidential candidates and their supporters are debating over. That is a lot of money that is supposed to be used to keep Americans safe.

The 18.4 cents per gallon Federal tax, if voided for the summer as John McCain and Hillary Clinton wish to do, would "cost" the government 10 Billion dollars. What "cost" actually means in this case is that the American people would be able to keep 10 Billion of their hard earned dollars over the summer, while the government would theoretically have 10 Billion less tax dollars to waste.

The argument of those against the tax holiday is, as I stated above, that this summer tax holiday is going to "cost" the government 10 Billion dollars, which would otherwise be going towards the upkeep of our nation's infrastructure.

Yet from our recent history, as well as simply keeping our eyes open as we drive on, ride on, and walk along our roads, we can see that our infrastructure is in terrible shape. From this we must come to the conclusion that the Billions of dollars in taxes that are supposed to be going towards our nation's infrastructure are actually being wasted. Which is not a surprise; the government wastes the vast majority of our tax dollars.

The other argument against the gas tax holiday is that it is not going to reduce prices at the pump at all. Those greedy oil companies are simply going to add another 18.4 cents per gallon to their bottom and top lines!

That argument is simply ignorance. Why? Because the Motor Fuel Tax is added onto the price of gas set by the oil companies, it has no impact on the price that fuel companies charge for their fuel. It is an added tax of 18.4 cents on every gallon of fuel sold in the United States.

That doesn't mean that the price of your gasoline will not continue to rise over the summer, as it does every summer. That is simply due to the increased demand for the product during the summer months. The tax being there or not being there is not at all relevant.

If the tax was there, then the price for gasoline over the summer would be the oil company's price plus an added 18.4 cents extra in tax. If the tax was not there, then the price of the gasoline would be 18.4 cents cheaper.

Hopefully that clears up the issue for everyone that was confused about it, and for those unsure of whether your candidate's stance is intelligent or not: Simply look at the facts and come to your own conclusion.

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