Thursday, October 26, 2006

It's time

OPEC prepared for $60 a barrel

OPEC has agreed to cut oil production and our "friends", the Saudis, are on board with it. Apparently, the new accepted minimum price for oil will be $60 a barrel. And this is just further evidence that we MUST do something about foreign oil dependence.

It's funny to me that when gas climbs over $3 a gallon, and the American people are pissed off, and our political leaders try to lean on the Saudis and other OPEC nations to ease the strain, they simply shrug their shoulders and say "there's nothing we can do", as if they have no control over supply and their wells are tapped dry. Then, when the price drops, suddenly the discover they DO have control of supply and decide to stick it to us. That's fine. I'm a capitalist and they have the right to do what they want with their resources, all I ask is that they don't piss on my boots and tell me that it's raining.

Just as they have the right as producers to alter the market, we have the right as consumers to do the same. It's time to END our dependence on foreign oil. The good thing is we can unite on this issue because I don't care if your motivation is to protect the environment or to eliminate OPEC's funding of terrorism, as long as we agree that it's time to stop this. The only question is how.

I think we can reach an agreement, a compromise if you will. First, we drill in the Gulf and the Arctic Wildlife refuge. The environmentalists will have to concede this for a return promise. Within a decade we stop burning fossil fuels for energy and all those drilling rigs can be torn down and the environment restored. Sound impossible? It can be done, especially if we come together on at least this one issue.

Will there be resistance? Of course. The oil lobby is powerful, but they can be encouraged to branch out into grain and grass fuels and hydrogen power. Capitalism always presents oppurtunities. And if we can pull this off, the OPEC crumbles, many of our terrorist enemies lose funding, the environmentalists are happier, and our economy no longer depends on what a few anti-American oil barons decide.


Dan Trabue said...

"Within a decade we stop burning fossil fuels for energy and all those drilling rigs can be torn down and the environment restored."

Intriguing proposal. Of course, I doubt that it can be done. Not the agreement so much (although that's an uphill run) as changing our ways within ten years so that we are no longer dependent upon fossil fuels. We NEED fossil fuels if we're going to keep living and promoting the way we're living (which, as you know I think, we can't continue to do much longer).

To live sustainably, we need to live in smaller circles, change habits, quit consuming so much. That's a much larger challenge that I sort of doubt we'll do until we're forced to do so by ecologic and economic necessity.

What would we be doing at the end of ten years that will allow us to stop burning fossil fuels?

Robert M. said...

Unfourtuanatly, (and I hate to sound liberal here) the oil componies aren't going to do anything. We know the Mid-East won't. What we have to do is either drill here or put some incentives out for alternative fuels. I think incentives would work better than gov't funding because the money would be paid to the best product insteead of being squandered.

John said...

Yep - let's start by getting rid of every enviro-freak we can find in the States...

Dan Trabue said...

"What would we be doing at the end of ten years that will allow us to stop burning fossil fuels?"

Anything? (Besides getting rid of "enviro-freaks"?)

shedmaster said...

i don't think a decade is enough time.
howsabout we give tax credits for passive solar home construction, thereby freeing up crude for auto fuel refinement. also BUILD some doggone refinery capacity. it's been 30 yrs. since one was built. they're building refineries in india fer crissakes. yes, drill in the ME, ship to india to refine, and ship back here.
easing restrictions on homeschooling reduces bus trips and gives kids better education.
lots of other ideas, but you get the drift.

John The Patriot said...

A lot of good ideas. Here is what I think. Basically, there are three reasons why I don't own an ethanol-based car. 1) too expensive 2) fuel is too expensive 3) fuel is not readily available (you can't just whip into the corner store to fill up).

I'm sure I'm not alone. These things can all be solved rather easily by creating a market for ethanol and ethanol-based engines. Basically, start taxing gasoline motors. At the end of year one, consumers pay a 2% tax for a gasoline motor. Year 2 - 4%, and so on until we reach something like a 15-20% tax on gasoline motors. Discourage consumers from buying them.

Also, tax the automakers for building them. Something similar to the above based on volume of production.

With the revenue, give HUGE tax credits to people who produce and purchase ethanol cars, and to stations that sell ethanol-based fuel. I think within ten years there will be a significant shift from gasoline to ethanol.

Farmers don't need much encouragement either. Things like switch grass require little maintenance and actually REPLENISH the soil, so it can be planted in the off-growing season for many farmers, giving them another source for revenue. Cane-based crops are another option. We have more than enough farm capacity to sustain this.

Encourage research into hydrogen technology. It's a better way to spend our tax dollars instead of funneling money into stem cell research.

Yes, tax breaks for homes that run on wind and solar power is good. Also, we must convert our electricity to nuclear power. It's cleaner and safer.

We may not be "fossil fuel free" in ten years, but we could potentially free ourselves from foreign oil dependence. It would be a good first step. After all, the space program started the same way.

Realist said...

Wake up!! There is enough oil in the ANWR to last about SIX MONTHS. Does that sound like even PART of a real solution?? The real answer is to look at alternative fuels (which we are going to have to do sooner or later anyway). Ethanol for example which we could have been using since Henry Ford designed the Model T to run off of it in 1927 had big oil not crushed it.