Stop the whining and let’s do something
It’s time to step up to the plate on the oil situation and implement a multi-faceted approach. It’s time to reason through the hysteria of those who complain but offer no alternative solutions. Say what? Hey, finish the sentences. What work do we have to do? Gutless and spineless politicians on both sides of the aisle — many of whom now have gone into hiding — offer the same old drivel about alternative energy sources and conservation. They talk about ethanol (which has been the “answer” for as long as I can remember), they blow foul wind about wind-induced energy, they offer up geothermal, hydro, solar and tidal energy alternatives without even knowing what they are talking about, and they have the gall to discuss government-mandated miles-per-gallon limits. Stop this insane pandering, do your due diligence and at least try to understand the fundamentals of global economics. Do what is necessary to bring our great country back on its feet — predicated, in part, on the basic economic logic that prices come down when supply goes up. Initiate actions that include but are not limited to the following: • Understand that any policy must be predicated on a clear balance between our need for oil and energy sources and the impact of that need on the ecosystem. • Remove the moratorium on offshore drilling and utilize remotely operated vehicle techniques. • Determine once and for all whether environmental concerns override the potential benefits of drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. • Begin a selective and staggered approach to utilizing nuclear energy and recognize that one part of the risk-reward equation is that well-operated nuclear power plants do not release contaminants into the environment. • Provide meaningful financial incentives for use of solar and wind-induced energy. • Provide financial incentives for realistic approaches to energy reduction: conservation, weatherization, efficiency, and on a somewhat longer term, renewables. • Utilize coal energy on a selective basis (rural areas, for example) recognizing that the coal industry has found several ways to reduce sulfur, nitrogen oxides and other impurities from coal. • Implement appropriate controls on paper trading of oil futures so there is no possibility whatsoever the crisis is caused by such trading as much as it is the result of fundamentals. • Remove restrictions so that refineries can be built — something that has not been done in 25 years. Heck, I don’t have all the answers but at least I have recommendations. I truly believe a multifaceted approach can go far in solving our energy issues, but we need to get through some difficult political knotholes — ones that are predicated on the fast-deteriorating assumption that environmentalists know what is best for the United States. You want to place blame, place it squarely on our government for failing to come up with a credible energy policy.
Ted Sares of North Conway can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.