Thursday, July 29, 2010

The Long March To Economic Ruin

The photo introducing this post is Old Roundtop, the first oil gusher in the United States. From that well grew an entire industry that contributed heavily to the growth of American wealth and success in all strata of society throughout most of the 20th Century. From that discovery in Texas in 1901, we have come to a point in history where politicians, environmental cuckoos, socialists, Luddites and plain damned fools want to destroy America's ability to produce that vital "black gold."

Currently, liberal demagoguery centers around the Gulf BP oil spill. The Democrats who are so fond of claiming that Republicans use tragedies for political purposes are using the BP tragedy to advance their agenda of taxing energy to death, and destroying America's abundant sources of energy. Though the current realization among eco-weenies is that they cannot pass their massive economy-destroying Cap 'n Tax legislation in its original form because of an immense public backlash, they are still determined to pass it piecemeal.

The CLEAR Act is an integral portion of that stealth scheme. CLEAR stands for Consolidated Land, Energy, and Aquatic Resources. Putting all of that together in one proposed law is a towering example of massive government power-grabbing on a scale so colossal as to make the Founders spin in their graves. And mind you, it's only a part of the grand Cap 'N Tax scheme. CLEAR is being pushed through Congress on the backs of energy-consumers and energy-producers alike, all in the guise of protecting us helpless morons from ourselves and a repeat of the BP oil spill.

The bill provides the usual snake-oil accounting involved in carbon-offset voodoo. But be sure to note the L stands for "land." Gulf drilling is only one facet of this plot to shut down all American oil production. But the Democrats know a good crisis when they see one, and they're going to exploit it. While we're shutting down deep water drilling, we might as well shut down all land operations as well, just in case some oil baron decided to try to drill in the Alaska National Wildlife Refuge.

Remember also that the act won't stop oil drilling in the Gulf. It will just stop American oil drilling. Obama's current moratorium is a good start, but it's important to make sure that it becomes permanent along with the land drilling prohibitions. You see, like Obama health care, this won't cost the taxpayers a dime, will have a very positive effect on the economy, and as a bonus will force the ignorant public away from gas-guzzling and into modern green technology. In no time at all, without oil and its dirtier cousin, coal, we'll all be driving cars powered by batteries, running manufacturing plants powered by wind and living in houses lighted, heated and cooled by the sun. Everything else will be powered by the newly-discovered, clean and locally abundant element Omnipowerum. The latter was discovered by Al Gore, who will have the sole patent on its production and distribution.

Back to the CLEAR Act. The act is scheduled for a vote on Friday of this week in the House. It cleared the Energy Committee unanimously with a provision for an independent investigation into the disastrous Gulf spill. It's bad enough that the Republicans on the committee voted for this huge government intrusion into the energy industries, but the only sop given to them for their submission was the investigation. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi has stripped the bill of that one small bit of sanity.

The original version would have provided for a bipartisan, independent National Commission on Outer Continental Shelf Oil Spill Prevention. It would have addressed how to avoid future disasters, but didn't contemplate avoiding them by eliminating all drilling once and for all. The commission set up by Barack Obama was purely comprised of leftists, eco-freaks, environmental activists, socialists and other know-nothings. Unlike the Obama commission, the Congressional commission would have included people of all environmental persuasions, and specifically would have included experts in petroleum engineering. There was not a single one on the Obama commission.

A Senate committee has also approved an independent commission of experts to study how to avoid another Deepwater Horizon disaster, but if Pelosi has acted, can Reid be far behind? By eliminating the independent commission in the House, Pelosi has provided cover for Obama and his administration's failure to prevent, then minimize, the damage now occurring. Some of the major failures which resulted in the oil spill are the direct responsibility of the Department of the Interior and other federal agencies, and by eliminating the commission, Pelosi covers the President's rear end.

Representative Bill Cassidy (R-LA) proposed the unanimously-passed amendment to create the commission in the House. Said Cassidy after Pelosi's action: "It defies common sense that this amendment passed unanimously in committee, only to be deleted in the Speaker's office." The lead Republican on the Natural Resources Committee, Doc Hastings (R-WA) had this to say: "By deleting the bipartisan, independent oil spill commission that's received bipartisan support in both House and Senate committees, Democrats have shown they are more interested in protecting the President than getting independent answers to what caused the tragic Gulf spill."

More importantly, Hastings addressed the real stealth purposes behind the removal of the commission and the entire CLEAR Act. "Even more outrageous is this bill's attempt to use the oil spill tragedy as leverage to enact totally unrelated policies and increase federal spending on unrelated programs by billions of dollars. What does a solar panel in Nevada, a wind turbine in Montana, uranium for nuclear power, or a ban on fish farming have to do with the Gulf spill? Nothing--but the spill is a good excuse to try and pass stalled or unpopular new laws."

That pretty much sums it up. Cap 'n Tax was about to go down to ignominious defeat. BP's spill gave the eco-nuts and power-grabbers a new life by providing a crisis to exploit in one small area of energy production and make it the basis for regulating and eliminating all sources of energy that the greenies in the administration and Congress don't like. It's much akin to using an elephant gun to kill a gnat. More aptly, it's like using an elephant gun to kill a gnat which is flying around in a large crowd of innocent bystanders.

22 comments:

Tennessee Jed said...

Maybe it is a question of the meaning of the term gusher, but I always thought the first well in the United States was the Drake Well in Titusville, Pa.

No matter, you have already ruined my morning with talk of the revival of cap and tax. Things just keep continuing to fall to the libs, I guess.

LawHawkRFD said...

Tennessee: Like so many "firsts," there's more than one version. Since I have more friends in Texas than in Pennsylvania, I went with Roundtop. Some people argue that it actually only started the Texas oil boom, but I just liked the picture. LOL

Sorry about ruining your morning, but I'm afraid that if we're too comfortable at breakfast, the left has lulled us into a false sense of security. Ever vigilant, Jed!

USArtguy said...

Even Time Magazine has to admit, albeit kicking and screaming, that "maybe" the BP oil spill was overblown.

The BP Spill: Has the Damage Been Exaggerated?
It must've just killed them to write that.

Then there's the NY Times and ABC.

And now for some science (from the year 2000)...

"Twice an Exxon Valdez spill worth of oil seeps into the Gulf of Mexico every year...[b]ut the oil isn't destroying habitats or wiping out ocean life. The ooze is a natural phenomena that's been going on for many thousands of years,...". "...scientists found that there are over 600 different areas where oil oozes from rocks underlying the Gulf of Mexico"

LawHawkRFD said...

USArtguy: My gut instincts have been since the beginning that as bad as the spill is, there's still a large element of hysteria. I'll defer to the feelings and economic damage suffered by the Louisiana residents who've had a double-whammy with the spill and Katrina, but I think there is an element of exaggeration outside the state. I'm guessing it will take a long time to determine if this really is "the worst ecological disaster in American history." I know it's bad. But how bad remains to be seen. It may be the worst ecological disaster in memory for Louisiana Gulf Coast inhabitants, but beyond that, we'll just have to wait. I've lived too long and seen too many disasters which were termed the end of the world as we know it to lose my sense of proportion.

HamiltonsGhost said...

Lawhawk--There just seems to be no end to the Democrats finding creative ways to avoid the people, real hearings and open votes, and the Constitution. Cap and Trade is a pie-in-the sky economic disaster that nobody with a dime's worth of sense wants, but they're still going to push it through in other forms and small doses.

LawHawkRFD said...

HamiltonsGhost: If I thought the Democrats had the ability to think beyond the next election, I'd be even more worried. It's clear that each time they pass one of these unpopular and inexplicable bills, they lose votes to the Republicans in the next election cycle. What I'm wondering is do they have the vision to plan making it so bad that a Republican Congress can't act quickly enough to undo the damage, thereby resulting in a return of the Democrats who caused the problem in the first place?

Patti said...

law: hell, i'm surprised that the oil spill hasn't been used by dems to push ALL legislation. oh crap, the trolls just went running back to washington with this idea.

Joel Farnham said...

LawHawk,

If I remember correctly, it was after a spill off the California coast which started the current country-wide ban on oil drilling. It also was rammed down people's throats before anyone could react and figure out what went wrong.

Right now, they can't find any oil on the ocean. So any one oil spill is not that bad, just do the best to keep it from the shores and all is well. That fact should be trumpetted across the nation.

In fact, most enviromentalism is a hoax perpetuated on the populace to keep the prices up and us ignorant. We fall for it, because the education we receive tells us that the enviroment is fragile.

I bet that if we care to look, some of these so-called played out fields have refilled and are usuable now.

All talk about Crap and tax, and all talk about enviromental crisis is that. Just false talk, intended for the rubes.

Right now, I am not amused.

LawHawkRFD said...

Patti: Anything and everything is an excuse for progressives to legislate and grab power. The oil spill is the cause du jour, but there will be another one tomorrow.

LawHawkRFD said...

Joel: You have your history right. It was a spill in 1969 off the Santa Barbara coast(we lived in adjacent Ventura County at the time). And it was the end of the world as we know it. The world ended again with the Exxon Valdez, and is ending now because of the BP spill. The Santa Barbara spill was a seminal disaster since it was one of the strongest and most hysterical arguments for creation of the EPA (1970). I've been through at least six extinction level events, but somehow the world goes on and I continue to breathe. Amazing how the world survived for billions of years without governmental interference. And it had some REAL extinction level events.

AndrewPrice said...

Interestingly, as USArtguy points out, they are now wondering where all the oil went. It turns out that microbes like eating the oil. Hmmm... nature solves its own problem again.

Still, this doesn't excuse BP or Obama.

LawHawkRFD said...

Andrew: And there is scientific rumor that they were able to enhance the natural microbes genetically to eat the oil faster, but a gazillion federal agencies jumped in to protect us from Frankenmicrobial takeover of the entire planet. LOL

btw said...

These days I fully expect the government to do the wrong thing. No more. No less.

Sorry to be so depressing but I just don't see any way around it. The train is now off the tracks and out of control.

StanH said...

Liberals don’t use any petroleum products, Mr. & Mrs. Liberal, or significant other are complaining.

LawHawkRFD said...

btw: But isn't it nice to know we can count on their consistency?

LawHawkRFD said...

Stan: I remember too well the students in their designer clothes leaning up against their BMWs and Volvos waving "no war for oil" signs during the first Gulf War. Now they're a little less hypocritical, since their cars run half on petroleum products and half on batteries made out of poisonous materials that put oil to shame when reintroduced into the environment.

CalFederalist said...

LawHawk. I'm all for starving the damned Middle East jihadist billionaires by ending their oil monopoly. But that's a little hard to do when we're decades away from being technologically able to depend on other energy sources. That leaves using our own abundant oil resources in the interim as the only practical alternative, and now the ecofreaks want to destroy that possibility entirely.

LawHawkRFD said...

CalFed: My dream is that some genius (preferably a Republican) will figure out how to harness all the wasted energy used in creating the hot air coming out of DC. I specifically said a Republican because any Democrat would quickly figure out how to put it under government control or make a personal profit on it at everybody else's expense. And of course if it was Al Gore, he'd have the best of both worlds. He is the biggest producer of hot air and has a government willing to hand him Midas-size bags of gold to produce and distribute it.

HamiltonsGhost said...

Lawhawk: I have a new slogan to go with "drill, baby, drill." For the useless patch of frozen, bug-infested, endangered-species free patch of land in Alaska holding billions of barrels of oil: "Damn the mosquitoes, full speed ahead."

LawHawkRFD said...

HamiltonsGhost: I don't know. I had my own plan of sending the Delta smelt to ANWR so California could have water again for its failing agriculture. But I suppose I could sacrifice. Now that I think of it, let's go with ANWR and export the smelt to the Chicago River.

AcesAndEights said...

LawHawk

I think one of the most important things you covered in the article is that just because the idiot in the White House plans to miraculously stop oil spills by killing the American oil business, the drilling will go on, for Russia, China, and much of Western Europe. Is this another one of his redistributing the wealth schemes, or is he just nuts?

LawHawkRFD said...

AcesAndEights: Both

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