Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Republicans complain high gas prices are Clinton's fault!



Frank J. Ranelli


Soaring gasoline prices at the pump has both democrats and republicans complaining. Everyone has been cast into the melting pot of high energy prices. While no one is claiming to be giddy over the spike in gas prices, except for giant energy companies such as Exxon-Mobil, the reactions to the problem are a strange dichotomy.

Democrats and liberals are looking for alternate, long term energy solutions. Al Gore’s signature issue, the environment, plays right into this notion that we cannot sustain our current pace of carbon-based fuels usage without destroying the planet in the process.

Republicans and conservatives, once the “throw money at it” solution of handing everyone a c-note to solve the issue didn’t work, reverted to a new, but increasingly hollow, yet clamorous methodology: Blame it on Bill! Bill Clinton, that is. It seems that the reactionary crowd has run out of cover and money and has come out firing a salvo of blanks.

Their peculiar reasoning is based on a groundless accusation. That if Bill Clinton would have allowed energy companies to drill in Alaska and the Artic Wildlife refuge ten years ago, we would have all the oil we would need- and it would be cheap, too! If you bother to do any research at all you would find out that the Dept. of Energy has already determined that drilling in Alaska and harnessing the oil purportedly located there would reduce current gasoline prices by about one cent per gallon. Further, geographical surveys suggest that the oil deposits in this area would yield enough oil to last less than 20 years, at our current pace and use of oil.

While politically convenient during a heated mid-term election cycle to blame it on democrats, exactly how is that going to solve our energy or gasoline supply problems? The real, unvarnished truth is more about this unavoidable, but constantly over-looked fact: We have reached and past peak oil production in the world. Oil is going to run out entirely in roughly 50 years. We cannot cling to current energy sources (oil) and must find alternate sources and methods for energy- now!

Drilling more holes in the Earth is not going to solve our lofty gas prices and Bush "the oil baron” will soon be out of office, which means republicans won't have someone left at the top to fill these empty holes with money in the form of tax breaks to oil companies.

I am sorry, but those touting the “Blame it on, Bill” mantra are going to have to do better than a lame attempt at placing responsibility on Clinton for our current energy woes. It‘s real easy to point fingers at someone who has been out of office for five and a half years. Much harder is the idea of laying the flawed energy policies we currently have at the feet of those presently in office and those having the empowerment to actual change it!

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