In a desperate effort to appease conservatives, John McCain supports lifting the ban on off-shore drilling this week.
“The stakes are high for our citizens and for our economy,” McCain, the presumed Republican nominee for president, said at a press conference Tuesday in Houston, Texas.
Hours later, White House Press Secretary Dana Perino said President Bush on Wednesday will ask Congress to lift the ban on offshore drilling.
Bush has long called for opening the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge in Alaska to oil exploration, but Perino said he now wants to go further.
“For years, the president has pushed Congress to expand our domestic oil supply, but Democrats in Congress have consistently blocked such action,” she said.
Kudos to whoever in the White House made the tactical decision to actually say something about the political party attacking its policies and people. How novel. To address the point: I love the fact that [President Bush] now wants to “go further” than drilling in ANWR. How about ripping up the floor of the Gulf of Mexico for starters?
Earlier in the day, McCain, describing the high price of fuel, confused the cost of gallons versus barrels, which drew laughs from the crowd and the candidate himself. He quickly corrected himself.
“And with gasoline running at more than $4 a barrel … a gallon … I wish … $4 a gallon, many do not have the luxury of waiting on the far-off plans of futurists and politicians,” he said.
Oh good. He wants to veto every beer and he’s tongue-tied on the gallon/barrel issue. Could we please get a candidate who at least has some knowledge of this century’s pricing?
“We have proven oil reserves of at least 21 billion barrels in the United States. But a broad federal moratorium stands in the way of energy exploration and production. And I believe it is time for the federal government to lift these restrictions and to put our own reserves to use.”
McCain’s plan would let individual states decide whether to explore drilling possibilities.
Hold on a sec. Let me adjust my whole fucking universe because something he said actually makes sense. This is the most definitive, most positive thing I’ve ever heard him say. Also, it’s much more substantial than anything Hopey McHoperson has ever said.
The proposal could put McCain at odds with environmentalists who say it is incongruous with his plans to combat global warning. California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, a McCain ally, opposes offshore drilling.
Yeah, there’s that. He has to kiss up to the Al Gore crowd while simultaneously appeasing Conservatives’ desire for a balanced energy portfolio. Thank goodness we know he’ll never actually do anything about increasing domestic oil production, thereby saving him the embarrassment of fending off his base: liberals.
By the way, how exactly does oil and gas contribute to global warming? According to this greeny site, it’s mostly the side effects of using petroleum products that are such ghastly bruises on the liberal heart:
There are several primary environmental impacts of using petroleum products: air emissions, including both greenhouse gases (which contribute to global warming) and air pollutants, spills, and the land disturbed and altered by oil drilling, pipelines, storage tanks and processing plants.
Land disturbed and altered by blah blah blah? New Orleans, Cedar Rapids, Phuket and even the teensy Bikini Atoll in the middle of the Pacific, which should have been deleted off the world map by nuclear weapons but is thriving despite the nukes, might have something to say about “disturbed land.” Enormous natural disasters continue to alter our land, shaping it by force and time (see also: erosion, dinosaurs, and the regrowth of Chernobyl). And more to the point, the United States has more land than we know what to do with. Look at a satellite map, particularly of the western half of the USA and you’ll see more greenspace than grey. That’s why environmentalists have been complaining about encroachment for twenty years or so – because we have enough space to encroach for twenty years, and twenty more, and probably hundreds more.
In short, that’s a spurious argument for not building plants.
Many officials from coastal states oppose offshore drilling because of the risk of oil spills. Environmentalists want offshore drilling to stop to protect oceans and beaches from further pollution.
During Hurricane Katrina, there was not a single oil spill. The Gulf Coast of the United States of America is one of the most heavily with oil platforms, and not one of them lost a single drop of oil, even though the government said that 105 of them had been destroyed. The last oil spill in the United States was on December 10, 2004 when a Malaysian freighter snapped in two off the coast of Alaska. The last oil spill the US was responsible for was on February 14, 2003 in the Midway Atoll National Wildlife Refuge. An underground corroded pipeline fitting failed, releasing fuel into the waters. The spill was deep underground, however, and there was no impact at all on fish or wildlife.
All in all, the US does a good job of preventing disasters, and cleaning up its messes when an accident occurs.
McCain opposes drilling in some parts of the wilderness and says those areas must be left undisturbed.
“When America set aside the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, we called it a ‘refuge’ for a reason,” he said.
Now that’s showing some intellectual weight: we call it that so it must be that, forever and ever. And all the wildlife will live happily ever after. Barl! This is nonsense. Use the land that is ours. The wildlife will find their way or not. As of this writing I believe that having our own source of fuel instead of being blackmailed by terrorist countries, and that a $2.50 gallon of gas for a mother trying to shuttle her kids to day camp and the grocery store is worth more than the life of an eagle, caribou, otter, or some snow rat. I believe that human beings are more valuable than animals. All humans, even jerky liberals who think $5/gallon gas is fine.
But back to McCain. Last week at a town meeting in Philadelphia he said he opposed drilling in ANWR for the same reason that he would not drill in the Grand Canyon. “I believe this should be kept pristine.”
Keep in mind that the proposed exploration in ANWR would affect only .01% of the 19 million acres of the refuge. But apparently that .01% is too precious for animals and not precious enough for humans.
Then McCain turned on Hopey McHoperson:
“So what does Sen. Obama support in energy policy? Well, for starters, he supported the energy bill of 2005 — a grab bag of corporate favors that I opposed. And now he supports new taxes on energy producers. He wants a windfall profits tax on oil, to go along with the new taxes he also plans for coal and natural gas. If the plan sounds familiar, it’s because that was President Jimmy Carter’s big idea too — and a lot of good it did us.”
This is rich. Because McCain supports the exact same things dressed up in a different vocabulary.
McCain argues that a windfall profits tax will only increase the country’s dependence on foreign oil and be an obstacle to domestic exploration.
Oh. I’m confused, and so is he because on June 11, 2008 – about a week ago – he was on the Today Show with Matt Lauer. Lauer said, “How can you and the other CEOs sleep at night when people are having to choose between feeding their families and filling their tanks? Are those people reacting out of pure emotion, or is there some logic to people who are asking those questions?”
McCain replied, “There’s logic to it and emotion to it. I mean, after all, look what’s happening to Americans who are on fixed income, particularly low-income Americans. The oil companies have got to be more participatory in alternate energy, in sharing their profits in a variety of ways, and there is very strong and justifiable emotion about their profits.”
So he wants a tax on the profits just…not a “tax” tax on the profits. But I can explain this change of footing. On that same day, the Washington Post said:
“Senate Republicans yesterday blocked a proposal to tax the windfall profits of the nation’s biggest oil companies and eliminate some of [their] tax breaks, rejecting Democratic claims that the measure would help assuage consumer anger over $4-a-gallon gasoline.”
Meaning he was careful to avoid using the “windfall profits” line, but its clear that he wants to tax energy profits, whether or not they are labeled “windfall.” Which, I might add, is a misnomer. A windfall is receiving money for which you did nothing to earn. Example: your uncle dies and leaves you a billion dollars. Windfall. You had nothing to do with it [ostensibly]. Oil companies, on the other hand, can not ever claim to have a “windfall” profit on oil since it’s their business. I believe this is just a verbal summersault to avoid saying “excess profits” which sounds so blatantly socialist.
“I’m all for recycling — but it’s better applied to paper and plastic than to the failed policies of the 1970s,” he said.
So clever. And nice ping for the enviro crowd.
Obama on Tuesday blasted McCain for changing his stance on offshore drilling.
Good for Hopey. I guess he’s violating his own policy of no attacks though.
Obama said a windfall profits tax would ease the burden of energy costs on working families. He also wants to invest in affordable, renewable energy sources.
No, he doesn’t want to. He want you to invest in “affordable, renewable energy sources.” He wants to force oil and gas companies to work against their own best interest by funding the research for competing products. He wants consumers to pay higher taxes to contribute to this fraud.
Controversy over offshore drilling surfaced in the United States in 1969, after a crack in the seafloor led to a huge oil spill off Santa Barbara, California.
1969? And… a crack in the seafloor? Is that something anyone could have foreseen or repaired? And yet… here we are today, with our 1969 hippie dippie mentality governing our energy and defense policy.
During the 1970s, when many Arab nations launched an oil embargo, many U.S. officials pushed for the exploration of offshore drilling of the coastal United States. Environmentalists responded with loud protests.
Of course they did. They’re idiots.