Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Five Dollar Gas?

Five dollars -- good for one gallon of gas. That's where we're going.

And I just checked, and John McCain still does not have an energy plan mentioned on his web site. Check it out under "issues".





Gasoline prices and energy dependency are, literally, non-issues for John McCain.

The closest John McCain comes to an energy policy is a little sticker page where he says we should "institute a summer gas tax holiday."

A summer gas tax holiday??!

Translation: "I think you're so stupid that if I mention 'taxes' you'll forget that the international price for oil is now $118 a barrel due to this crippling war which I voted for, and which I still support. I think you're so stupid you won't realize I'm simply trying to pander to you until the election in November. I think you're so stupid you won't realize this 'holiday' will soon end, but in the meantime it will add tremendous amounts to the National Debt (already rising fast due to the war) while undercutting our ability to repair roads and bridges which are, literally, collapsing around us."

John McCain really is a fossil fool from another era. He's a politician locked and ready to move us from horses to cars, but he's the wrong politician to move us into the Next Economy, which even British Petroleum understand is "beyond petroleum."

Can we really afford a President who does not have a single word on his campaign web site about energy policy?

Can we really afford a candidate who actively opposes increased fuel efficiency standards?

And can we really afford a national media that simply ignores this very real issue??

Why is it OK for the government to send our children to the Middle East to DIE for oil, and to be CRIPPLED for oil, but it's not OK for this same government to mandate increased fuel efficiency standards and to invest in alternative energy and energy conservation?

Is there anything more likely to impact impact your life (your commute to work, your run to town for groceries, your hunting season, your dog show and dog trials, your vacation) than the price of gasoline?

And realize that the price of gasoline has gone up $2 a gallon since the start of this war that John McCain continues to be a cheerleader for.

Remember in November.



jdege said...

Nothing on his website about how he'd address the energy crisis?

Odd. I did a quick search and found this:


There seem to be some actual proposals in there. Just a part:

"Energy efficiency by using improved technology and practicing sensible habits in our homes, businesses and automobiles is a big part of the answer, and is something we can achieve right now. And new advances will make conservation an ever more important part of the solution. Improved light bulbs can use much less energy; smart grid technology can help homeowners and businesses lower their energy use, and breakthroughs in high tech materials can greatly improve fuel efficiency in the transportation sector. We need to dispel the image of conservation that entails shivering in cold rooms, reading by candlelight, and lower productivity. Americans have it in their power today to contribute to our national security, prosperity and a cleaner environment. They understand the dangers we face, and are prepared to respond to appeals to patriotism that explain how we can free ourselves from them.

We need not wait for another age, in which science fiction becomes every day reality. Flexible-fuel vehicles aren't futuristic pie in the sky. We can easily deploy such technology today for less than $100 per vehicle; and we must develop the infrastructure necessary to take full advantage. We were able to overcome the challenges of putting seatbelts, airbags, and computer technology in practically every car. We can provide fuel options and improve the fuel efficiency of our vehicle fleet by making them out of high tech materials that improve their strength and safety. We are doing that very thing right now to beat our foreign competitors in the aerospace industry.

Alcohol fuels made from corn, sugar, switch grass and many other sources, fuel cells, biodiesel derived from waste products, natural gas, and other technologies are all promising and available alternatives to oil. I won't support subsidizing every alternative or tariffs that restrict the healthy competition that stimulates innovation and lower costs. But I'll encourage the development of infrastructure and market growth necessary for these products to compete, and let consumers choose the winners. I've never known an American entrepreneur worthy of the name who wouldn't rather compete for sales than subsidies.

America's electricity production is for the most part petroleum free, and the existing electric power grid has the capacity to handle the added demand imposed by plug-in hybrid vehicles. We can add more capacity and improve its reliability in the years ahead. Nuclear energy, renewable power, and other emission free forms of power production can expand capacity, improve local air quality and address climate change. I'll work to promote real partnerships between utilities and automakers to accelerate the deployment of plug-in hybrids.

With some of the savings from cutting subsidies for industries that can stand on their own, we can establish a national challenge to improve the cost, range, size, and weight of electric batteries for automobiles. Fifty percent of cars on the road are driven 25 miles a day or less. Affordable battery-powered vehicles that can meet average commuter needs could help us cut oil imports in half. The reward will be earned through merit by whomever accomplishes the task, whether a laboratory in the Department of Energy, a university, a corporation or an enterprising young inventor who works out of his family's garage.

There is much we can do to increase our own oil production in ways that protect the environment using advanced technologies, including those that use and bury carbon dioxide, to recover the oil below the wells we have already drilled, and tap oil, natural gas, and shale economically with minimal environmental impact.

The United States has coal reserves more abundant than Saudi Arabia's oil reserves. We found a way to cut down acid rain pollutants from burning coal, and we can find a way to use our coal resources without emitting excessive greenhouse gases.

We have in use today a zero emission energy that could provide electricity for millions more homes and businesses than it currently does. Yet it has been over twenty-five years since a nuclear power plant has been constructed. The barriers to nuclear energy are political not technological. We've let the fears of thirty years ago, and an endless political squabble over the storage of nuclear spent fuel make it virtually impossible to build a single new plant that produces a form of energy that is safe and non-polluting. If France can produce 80% of its electricity with nuclear power, why can't we? Is France a more secure, advanced and innovative country than we are? Are France's scientists and entrepreneurs more capable than we are? I need no answer to that rhetorical question. I know my country well enough to know otherwise.

Let's provide for safe storage of spent nuclear fuel, and give host states or localities a proprietary interest so when advanced recycling technologies turn used fuel into a valuable commodity, the public will share in its economic benefits.

I want to improve and make permanent the research and development tax credit. I want to spend less money on government bureaucracies, and, where the private sector isn't moving out of regulatory fear, to form the partnerships necessary to build demonstration models of promising new technologies such as advanced nuclear power plants, coal gasification, carbon capture and storage, and renewable power so we can take maximum advantage of our most abundant resources. And I'll make it a national mission to develop a catalyst capable of breaking down carbon dioxide into useful chemical building blocks, and rendering it a new source of revenue and opportunity."

PBurns said...

Good find!

Funny how this made it to a PRESS RELEASE side of his web site, but not the ISSUES side of his web site. Does that mean something?

I think it might.

Reading this I find pure rhetoric but not much in terms of numbers or real legislation or incentives. This reads a bit like a Popular Science article from 1978 when we were promised that we would all have flying cars by 2008. But you and I are still waiting. Where are they? These things take programs and John McCain is against those.

What's amazing here is that getting out of Iraq is not part of John McCain "let's reduce the price at the pump" plan even though it is clearly a HUGE part of the problem.

Apparently John McCain does not see ANY connection with invading Iraq (which he supported then, supported yesterday, suppors today, and supports tomorrow and into the future, forever) and the international price per barrel of oil which TRIPLED in just 4 years after Iraq.

Iraq is what caused the "jump at the pump," but McCain ignores it, instead talking about solutions that are 10-50 years into the future (or more!) which is his way of saying "get used to being screwed by Exxon."

In fact, to the extent he is relying on ethanol and biofuels, he knows that "solution" depends on $5 a gallon gasoline to make the economics work. John McCain's pitch is "let the drive on Vodka." And who care what it does to the price of food here and in the developing world.

Good on him for mentioning Nukes, but if he thinks that's a quick fix, he is mistaken. Let's face it -- McCain will NEVER have the political muscle, as president, to get even one more nuclear reactor built, much less the 80 or 90 that are going to be needed. "Maverick" has always been a divider, not a uniter, and it's not what is needed.

And so, without a real solid plan based on legislation and real money, this did not go onto the "issues" side of the web site, but on to the "press release" side of the web site.


jdege said...

"Apparently John McCain does not see ANY connection with invading Iraq (which he supported then, supported yesterday, suppors today, and supports tomorrow and into the future, forever) and the international price per barrel of oil which TRIPLED in just 4 years after Iraq."

On the other hand, you clearly see a connection. You seem convinced that if we were to leave Iraq, oil prices would come down.

Could you explain to me, please, by what mechanism this would happen? Or by what mechanism our getting involved in Iraq caused prices to rise in the first place?

Oil prices are a function of supply and demand. If our getting out if Iraq were to lower oil prices, it would have to either raise supply or lower demand, or both.

Would our getting out of Iraq reduce the growing demand for oil in China and India? How?

Would our getting out of Iraq lead to increases in oil production? Where? How?

What's the mechanism?

PBurns said...

Actually, jdege, prices of things are NOT based solely on supply and demand. They are also based on speculation (hence the stock market and bubbles ranging from tulips to tech stocks) and fear. And the fear premium is pretty high in oil.

But if you want to Google, there's alot to read. Here's the latest from The Washington Post in which Dan Froomkin also notes the "magic wand" thinking of the GOP (apparently while was noting that John McCain's energy spiel reads like a Popular Science fantasy article, George W. Bush was invoking his new "hope-in-sorcery" policy.


Read the whole thing. >> http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/blog/2008/04/30/BL2008043001821_pf.html

I will post a nice graph on pricing and Iraq, however. Good illuminating stuff.