I’ve been listening to Newt Gingrich since former State Rep. Bernie Pedersen starting sending me GOPAC tapes every month during the late 1980′s.
What impressed me was that his visions embraced the entire country–from suburbs to inner city.
I was particularly impressed with the privately-funded program to pay public housing kids to read books. The best line was when an older sister who had pooh-poohed the concept saw the money that her little sister brought home after a week.
“Where’d you get that money?”
“Readin’,” the little sis answered. (There was a verification process, sort of a verbal book report.)
The next week the older sister got with the program and read enough to buy a pair of Nike’s with what she earned by reading.
Of the Republican Presidential candidates, Gingrich clearly gives the best speech.
Today he performed at Ray Polte’s airplane hanger at the Lake in the Hills (used to be and could still have been Crystal Lake) Airport.
Inspired by the aircraft in the hanger, Gingrich talked about the efforts of the Wright Brothers to learn how to fly.
He said what Orville and Wilbur had in their favor was that they knew they didn’t know how to fly.
After being told by the U.S. Weather Bureau where the winds were most reliable, they headed to Kitty Hawk on the train.
They took extra wood, Gingrich explained, because they knew they were going to fail.
And they failed 499 times.
But on the 500th attempt they succeeded.
Orville ran next to the plane on its first flight so he could balance the plane manually if he needed to to save his brother’s life, Gingrich said.
Within three years they flew a plane around Manhattan.
Gingrich attributed this to the technological advances American inventors and engineers are capable of, if the government doesn’t get in the way.
Gingrich brought laughter to the crowd of a couple of hundred by asking what the Congressional hearing would have been like, after hundreds of crashes, if there had been a government subsidy involved.
Then, he pointed out that the Smithsonian Institution had been given a $50,000 grant to build an airplane.
A premier scientific institution, those working on the project knew they knew how to fly.
They built a catapult, a concept still used on aircraft carriers.
They aimed the catapult out over the Potomac River.
The basic problem was that they didn’t plan for failure, Gingrich said.
While the Wright Brothers had soft sand upon which to land, if the Smithsonian’s plane crashed, there was no chance for a second try.
If the plane didn’t break up on impact and sank, lifting it from the bottom would have demolished it.
There was an Associated Press reporter for the first Kitty Hawk flight.
The Smithsonian invited the press, who, after the crash, wrote of the spectacular failure.
Gingrich told this story to let people know he was enthusiastic about science even though he had denigrated President Obama’s pitch to use algae to fuel cars.
He presented himself as the candidate of Wright, Edison and Henry Ford, “people who invented the modern world without government subsidies.”
He then moved on to the theme of the campaign, $2.50 a gallon gasoline.
That’s what the sign on the podium said.
Gingrich criticized Obama for praising Brazil for doing offshore drilling, while preventing it in United States waters.
He criticized Obama for his elation at convincing the Saudis to increase oil production, which Obama said would lower prices.
Then, Gingrich pounced.
If increased oil production in the Mideast would lower gasoline prices, why wouldn’t increased oil production here have the same effect.
And, of course, anyone with a rudimentary knowledge of the laws of supply and demand would know that.
So, the real question is whether the President should be “a purchasing agent” of oil abroad or someone trying to create jobs in the United States.
Gingrich pointed to North Dakota with its oil boom and 3.5% unemployment rate.
And he pointed to the drop in natural gas prices because of the huge new supply resulting from using the new technology of fracking.
Gingrich drew an analogy with oil prices, which may or may not be valid, because natural gas has a domestic use and distribution system, while oil prices are set on the world market.
He pointed out that in North Dakota alone, the recoverable oil was estimated to be 150 million barrels fifteen years ago.
Until last week, the new estimate was 4 billion barrels.
And within the last seven days the number has been increased to 24 billion barrels.
He predicted that within two years, when technology is developed to get oil from 800 feet down, the reserves would be estimated at 500 billion barrels.
Using his natural gas price drop analogy argument, he thinks that the price could go lower than the $2.50 a gallon pump price he is merchandising.
Besides North Dakota, he points to tremendouse acreage in Alaska and offshore drilling to provide additional supply.
The Presidential candidate argued that the Strategic Oil Reserve could do little to lower the price of gas.
Gingrich said his goal as President would be to make us energy self-sufficient.
He drew applause when he said, “I do not ever again want to see an American President bow down to a Saudi King. The Saudis are not our allies.”
At one point Gingrich read an attack on him by President Obama after Gingrich made fun of Obama’s having said that algae would help solve the energy problem.
“They make jokes about biofuels. They must have been founding members of the flat earth society.”
Gingrich’s reply was the Obama must belong “to the flat earth Sierra Club society.”
That brought a laugh from the audience.
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A commenter adds something I didn’t put above:
I was at the airport and saw Newt and His lovely wife.Newt spoke on a lot of topics without a teleprompter and did not stumble over his words or use lots of Umms in between his thoughts.
Then his solution to eliminate the Federal Deficit is outstanding and the 300 or so people loved it too.
His solution is open federal lands for oil and take the oil royalties paid to Government and put them in a special account to pay off the deficit and not be used for other purposes.
The royalties are said to be worth 18 TRILLION dollars!
This program will make USA and energy supplier to the world and let us be energy independent! He got big applause for this.
I am very glad that my wife and I were able to see him live.
Very Impressive man!
I took lots of photos and got some very good ones.