Thursday, April 1, 2010

Drill, Baby, Drill, Baby, Drill, Baby, Drill. And So On.

President Obama, Wednesday:

We have less than 2 percent of the world's oil reserves; we consume more than 20 percent of the world's oil. And what that means is that drilling alone can't come close to meeting our long-term energy needs. And for the sake of our planet and our energy independence, we need to begin the transition to cleaner fuels now.
Goodness no. Expanding drilling would just perpetuate tired, failed, destructive patterns. Do go on:
For decades we've talked about the threat to future generations posed by our current system of energy –- even as we can see the mounting evidence of climate change from the Arctic Circle to the Gulf Coast. And this is particularly relevant to all of you who are serving in uniform: For decades, we've talked about the risks to our security created by dependence on foreign oil, but that dependence has actually grown year after year after year after year.
Yes indeed. The sooner we can find ways to break free of oil, the better for national security, the economy, and the natural environment. Here, here. The conclusions for public policy are ineluctable and obvious -- drill more now!
So today we're announcing the expansion of offshore oil and gas exploration, but in ways that balance the need to harness domestic energy resources and the need to protect America's natural resources. Under the leadership of Secretary Salazar, we'll employ new technologies that reduce the impact of oil exploration. We'll protect areas that are vital to tourism, the environment, and our national security. And we'll be guided not by political ideology, but by scientific evidence.
This scientific evidence will show, he evidently means to say, that 2% of the world's oil can meaningfully contribute to the sustenance of 20% of the world's oil consumption plus growth. Zounds! That scientific evidence is going to make all scientific evidence before it seem palsied, unsexy, and frankly boring by comparison.

There are two idiotic, counter-productive, self-undermining ruts to note in the president's remarks: first, perpetuating dependence on oil while reciting the familiar case against doing so, while insisting that sound evidence will guide this Escher-inspired course to nowhere possible. Second, issuing another loud and clear go fuck yourselves! to those who put him in office.

(map image via Yglesias)

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