Factcheck.org, the website the vice president tried to make famous, has this to say about the two presidential candidates’ energy plans:  “Kerry and Bush Mislead Voters With Promises of Energy Independence.”

The website, a project of the Annenberg Public Policy Center of the University of Pennsylvania, writes:

Kerry focuses on conservation efforts, but most agree his plan is little more than an outline. Bush supports expanded drilling in Alaska to increase domestic oil supply, but the US has only about 3 percent of the world’s oil reserves. At current rates of consumption that would only last 4.5 years.

Factcheck.org seems to hang its hat on a Rocky Mountain Institute study that found that the U.S. could end its reliance on foreign oil by 2040 — “but that would require a ten-year investment of $180 billion, and such steps as taxing gas-guzzling vehicles and providing government subsidies for low-income buyers of fuel-efficient autos. Neither candidate is proposing anything close to that.”

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In many ways, the conclusions of Factcheck.org match those reached by New Yorker author John Cassidy in his recent piece “Pump Dreams; Is Energy Independence An Impossible Goal?