Palin Big Oil

In 2006, President Bush famously said in his State of the Union:


Keeping America competitive requires affordable energy. And here we have a serious problem: America is addicted to oil, which is often imported from unstable parts of the world. The best way to break this addiction is through technology …

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By applying the talent and technology of America, this country can dramatically improve our environment, move beyond a petroleum-based economy, and make our dependence on Middle Eastern oil a thing of the past.

On the solution side, Bush was mainly following the advice of GOP spinmeister Frank Luntz on how to pretend you are interested in solving our energy problems without actually doing anything (see  Bush follows Luntz playbook: “Technology, technology, blah, blah, blah).

But the news that night was how the former Texas oilman bluntly stated both the problem, our addiction to oil, and the ultimate goal, to “move beyond a petroleum-based economy.”

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Now along comes FoxNews contributor Sarah Palin, who has devised the perfect way to put forward for her backward energy policy — Facebook.  That way she can avoid any substance, avoid those pesky questions from reporters, and not bother to spend even two seconds editing her posts so she doesn’t utter blather like this:

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Where’s the Oil in Our National Energy Policy?

Yesterday at 3:41pm

America’s energy challenges are getting more and more serious every day, and yet the Obama administration just doesn’t get it. Please see this informative article that sheds light on one aspect of the president’s problem. It starts by explaining our energy demand will increase, and oil will be part of that demand.

Well, what do you know? The Obama administration, whose entire energy posture going back into the presidential campaign has been both ideologically and practically stridently anti-oil, both as an industry and as a form of energy, has suddenly become “concerned” about China’s oil grab.

This is, to say the least, disingenuous.

The U.S. government under Barack Obama has yet to acknowledge once, in spite of widely held estimates, that oil will continue to account for 40% of world energy demand 25 years from now — this while total world energy demand will increase by 50%, at least.

Read the rest here. I look forward to hopefully hearing President Obama acknowledge America’s need to ramp up domestic energy production, including oil and natural gas developments, during Wednesday’s State of the Union address. Let’s hope his advisers advise him accordingly.

– Sarah Palin

This is unmitigated nonsense.

The piece Palin quotes, from uber-right-wing Investors Business Daily is outraged that Energy Secretary Chu said, “We must move beyond oil.” Yet that is precisely what President Bush said, “move beyond a petroleum-based economy.” This is, to say the least, disingenuous.

As for what Obama actually supports, let’s just go back to December (see “Graham says Obama has his back on climate bill“):

Sen. Lindsey Graham may be under fire from conservatives back home in South Carolina. But the Republican got a personal assurance from President Obama yesterday that the White House is supporting his efforts to craft a sweeping Senate energy and global warming bill.

“The president told me personally he was very open, that nuclear power would be part of the mix, that clean coal would be part of the mix, that he’s for offshore drilling in a responsible way,” Graham said today in describing his Oval Office meeting with Obama. “But we have to have a price on carbon, an emissions standard that’s real, that’s good for the environment and good for business. And I was very pleased.”

Palin seems to have no advisers advising her, else her advising advisors would have hopefully and accordingly told her that President Obama campaigned on a strategy of expanding domestic resources while aggressively pushing clean energy and greenhouse gas reductions.

I reported back in August 2008 on the Obama-Biden energy plan (“Breaking news — A real energy plan for America: Efficiency now, 10 percent renewables by 2012, and one million plug-in hybrids by 2015“).  Here’s what it says about domestic energy:

Promote the Supply of Domestic Energy

With 3 percent of the world’s oil reserves, the U.S. cannot drill its way to energy security. But U.S. oil and gas production plays an important role in our domestic economy and remains critical to prevent global energy prices from climbing even higher. There are several key opportunities to support increased U.S. production of oil and gas that do not require opening up currently protected areas.

• A “Use it or Lose It” Approach to Existing Leases. Oil companies have access to 68 million acres of land, over 40 million offshore, which they are not drilling on. Drilling in open areas could significantly increase domestic oil and gas production. Barack Obama and Joe Biden will require oil companies to diligently develop these leases or turn them over so that another company can develop them.

• Promote the Responsible Domestic Production of Oil and Natural Gas. Barack Obama and Joe Biden will set up a process for early identification of any infrastructure obstacles/shortages or possible federal per
mitting process delays to drilling in:

o Bakken Shale in Montana and North Dakota which could have as much as 4 billion recoverable barrels of oil according to the U.S. Geological Survey.

o Unconventional natural gas supplies in the Barnett Shale formation in Texas and the Fayetteville Shale in Arkansas.

o National Petroleum Reserve‐Alaska (NPR‐A) which comprises 23.5 million acres of federal land set aside by President Harding to secure the nation’s petroleum reserves for national
security purposes.

• Prioritize the Construction of the Alaska Natural Gas Pipeline.

• Getting More from our Existing Oil Fields. [from enhanced oil recovery (EOR)]

Of course, Palin is so practiced at repeating falsehoods — even in her supposed area of expertise (energy) — that during last year’s presidential campaign, the Washington Post itself gave her its highest (which is to say lowest) rating of “Four Pinocchios” for continuing to “to peddle bogus [energy] statistics three days after the original error was pointed out by independent fact-checkers.”

I’m not sure what is scarier — Palin trying to participate in the discussion over energy policy with nonsensical posts like this one or conservative thought leader Newt Gingrich calling her a conservative leader on energy issues.

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