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Monday, August 04, 2008

To the Gang of 10: Better, But Keep Trying

Fox News and others are reporting that the energy "Gang of 10" which includes Senator John Thune have formulated an energy proposal to lower gas prices.

While I'm not totally happy with their plan, this group of Democrats and Republicans seem to have a slightly better understanding of the problem of high gas prices than Democrat Senator Ken Salazar last week.

From Human Events:

McConnell was asking for unanimous consent, so the bill could pass immediately. Try as he might, Sen. Ken Salazar (D-Co) objected no matter how high McConnell raised the ante.

$4 a gallon? Salazar objected. $7.50 a gallon? Again, Salazar objected. Finally, McConnell offers a trigger for offshore drilling permission at $10 a gallon gasoline prices. And guess what? Salazar objected.

The Democrats would rather have us under the burden of $10 a gallon gasoline than give permission for offshore oil drilling.




The Democrats are supposedly the party of the common man? Can you say "out of touch?" Can you say, "elitist?" Can you say, "Let them eat cake?" I knew you could.

Here's what the Gang of 10 has in mind, from Fox News:
The plan also would require automobiles to be more fuel efficient and would provide research money for improved batteries to move away from petroleum-products in cars: the plan calls for 85 percent of vehicles to run on non-petroleum-based fuel in 20 years.

Senators said the bill also would promote more renewable energy sources and nuclear energy, as well as carbon capture techniques to reduce greenhouse gas production through tax and other incentives.

"This bill would do more to lower gas prices at the pump" than any other plan, Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-La., told reporters at a Capitol Hill news conference. "Any change in production would send a powerful signal to markets" that would ease back on speculation that primarily Democrats have blamed as one reason for sky-high oil prices.

Actually, I can think of a a plan that would do more to lower gas prices at the pump: one that incorporates immediate drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR), immediate drilling offshore, streamlining the regulatory and permitting process for new refineries, and streamlining approval and building of new nuclear reactors.

As for the carbon capture and other promotion of faerie tales, the only effect that might have would be to raise energy prices.

I also don't put much stock in the call for most cars to run on non-petroleum energy sources in 20 years. Maybe it'll happen, maybe it won't, but "calling" for it isn't going to conjure it up like a magical spell.

And when you consider that the CAFE standards of times past have "called for" more fuel efficient cars, this increased efficiency has come not so much at the hands of better technology, but cheap, plastic, toy-like cars that are totalled after even a low-speed impact.

And how many people have died from riding around in these plastic death traps? About 46,000 people, according to National Highway Traffic Safety Administration information published in USA Today.

What will be the unintended consequence of a mandate for "85 percent of vehicles to run on non-petroleum-based fuel in 20 years?" How many lives might it cost if no miracle breakthrough occurs in the next 20 years?

I suppose this plan would be better than the current Democrat plan: do nothing.

Perhaps this is a sign that not enough pressure has been put on our elected representatives yet. Apparently they still don't take $4.00 a gallon gasoline--or our energy needs--seriously.

Let's keep turning up the heat, folks. How many Senate seats lost will it take the Democrats to get the picture: 4? 7? 10?


1 comments:

Dr. Theo said...

"Perhaps this is a sign that not enough pressure has been put on our elected representatives yet." Bingo!
We have to keep the pressure on if we expect our spineless representatives to do something. I read this morning that even Madame Pelosi is beginning to waiver a little. I guess saving the planet only comes second to political power.

 
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