Friday, June 13, 2008

Suicide by Environmentalism

Our dependence on Middle East oil is a common object of ridicule. The critics of this dependence are generally the same people who caused the dependence in the first place - environmentalists. They have placed so many areas of America off limits to drilling - ANWAR, coastal waters, etc. - that we are left with no choice but to import oil from elsewhere.

But logic was never a strong suit among environmentalists. Consider the recent vote to continue restrictions on off shore drilling. The Democrats trotted out one of their standard excuses for not allowing more drilling:

"We are kidding ourselves if we think we can drill our way out of these problems," said [House Appropriations Committee Chairman David Obey, D-Wis], noting that no matter how U.S. oil sources are pursued “we still have a tiny portion of the world (oil) supply.”

Suppose for a moment that everyone, everywhere, took that attitude. Then no one would ever drill for oil except Saudi Arabia, and everyone would be 100% dependent upon them for their oil. That is the "logic" underlying the Democrat/environmentalist restrictions on drilling for oil. By that twisted logic, Americans should never have extracted any oil in this country at all, since we were never going to have more than a small percentage of the world supply.

But even that is giving the Democrats too much credit. There are enormous amounts of oil available from oil shale in this country, over and above all the oil waiting to be tapped off shore.

But environmentalists would rather fantasize about alternative energy sources like wind and solar - when they are not obstructing even those sources of energy, as eyesores. Last I heard, no one is stopping them from developing those energy sources themselves.

The free market could provide us with all the energy we need. If we had a free market.

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