I loved this article by Victor David Hanson at PJ Media: The Gaseous Policies of Barack Obama.
This bit was especially satisfying:
Why would the president consider tapping the strategic oil reserve, but not start a breakneck effort at developing new sources? Is previously pumped oil less polluting; does it increase supply and lower prices in a way that freshly pumped oil does not? Does his mockery of “drill, drill, drill” suggest that “not drill, not drill, and not drill” is a wiser alternative? Does Obama realize that even an extra 3 to 4 million barrels a day produced here would earn the U.S. billions in extra revenue and help to stabilize world prices by taking a commensurate amount of American demand off the world market?
I hear Dems now yelping about how oil is a commodity sold on a world market so American oil wouldn’t be any cheaper than Saudi oil, and demand from China and India will keep prices high. Of course this line of argument misses three important points: 1. Increasing supply IS the answer to bringing down prices caused by high demand. OPEC has been manipulating prices by tuning supply to demand for decades (squeezing supply to keep prices up)–which is not the only reason for high prices, but it’s worth remembering–and if we had plentiful production here, they would have far less power to do that. Either way, increasing supply reduces prices. 2. One of the problems on the world market is that such a large portion of oil comes from the unstable Middle East that things like the insanity of the Mullahs threatening to shut down the Strait of Hormuz has an impact on oil prices. Stable supply from a stable region of the world (the USA, Canada, Mexico, and Brazil) would help to mitigate the price fluctuations caused by political uncertainty. 3. Speculation (futures markets) has an impact on price and the prospect of vastly increasing supply will cause speculators to reduce the prices.
Of course, none of that is even to touch the point VDH made about increased revenue to the US treasury from oil leases, or the economic benefits of oil company money spent that creates real, useful, high paying long-term jobs domestically. Instead of cashing in on allowing the oil companies to spend their own money on things that are fantastic for the overall economy (increased petroleum supply, increased jobs), the Obama administration wants to spend tax-payer dollars on not-ready-for-primetime green energy projects. (Laughably, the same people who are counting on algae to be the next big breakthrough, despite the fact that no one has been able to actually create energy from it yet, it’s only a theory, will argue–once again–that drilling won’t bring oil online for 10 years. They’ve made that same argument for decades.)