Morning Whip, 3/20/05

I’ve stayed away from the Terri Schiavo story, mainly because I find the entire affair incredibly distasteful. But now, Congress is involved[*1] . I still don’t know what to think, other than This Should Not Be Happening.

SecDef Rumsfeld was on Fox News Sunday this morning. I wasn’t able to catch the full interview, but snippets sounded typically Rumsfeld-amusing. If I can I’ll find a transcript somewhere on the web and comment on Rummy’s comments.

Gas prices continue rising. Many news stories are of the “sky is falling and Joe/Jane Sixpack Whines” variety, but there don’t seem to be many stories giving a reasoned analysis of why this is occurring. We have nonsensical linkages[*2] of the Iraq war to the gas price spike. Some articles mention speculators[*3] . Increasingly, industry observers are thinking that this is indeed a price bubble[*4] . But underneath the bubble, there is a long-term shift in the energy market driven by increased energy demands, primarily from China [*5] and India[*6] . Prices might come down a bit, for a little while, but long term, get used to higher gas prices, folks.

Send in the Panthers. Apparently, Bucknell couldn’t round up their own band to play at the NCAA tournament, so they offered t-shirts and $150 in pizza to the Northern Iowa band to play the Bison fight song[*7] during their win over Kansas. Given the result, perhaps Bucknell will extend a permanent offer to the UNI band, as well as change the pronunciation of their mascot to the Bi-SOHN after the CBS TV commentator persistently mangled the relatively simple name for the American Buffalo (was it Billy Packer?). (My friends from NDSU pronounce it “BI-zunn” by the way).

Finally, how high are you on the Ladder of Accountability[*8] ?