Free Markets, Free People


In the midst of terrible economic times, let’s raise energy prices dramatically and lay people off …

“Never let the reality of the situation stand in the way of a political agenda”, ought to be the slogan of the Obama reelection campaign.

In the midst of the worst economic downturn the executive branch of the Federal Government (the Obama administration), under the guise of the EPA is ratcheting up standards that will shut down many coal fired plants and their jobs as well as cost billions for utilities to keep other coal plants open.  Result:

Consumers could see their electricity bills jump an estimated 40 to 60 percent in the next few years.

The reason: Pending environmental regulations will make coal-fired generating plants, which produce about half the nation’s electricity, more expensive to operate. Many are expected to be shuttered.

Of course the timing of the increase is predictable:

The increases are expected to begin to appear in 2014, and policymakers already are scrambling to find cheap and reliable alternative power sources. If they are unsuccessful, consumers can expect further increases as ore expensive forms of generation take on a greater share of the electricity load.

Yup, safely reelected (he hopes), Mr. Obama will smile benignly as he watches more of you hard earned money go for what should be cheap and plentiful energy based on incredibly abundant coal.  Instead we’ll be chasing “reliable alternate power sources”.   One would like to believe we’d go to natural gas, but then those abundant finds are also being slow walked through the red tape of the government approval process.

More than 8,000 megawatts of coal-fired generation capacity has been retired in the U.S. since 2005, according to data from industrial software company Ventyx. Generators have announced they plan to retire another 21,000 megawatts in the near future, and some industry consultant studies estimate 60,000 megawatts of power, enough for 60 million homes, will be taken offline by 2017.

This in the midst of projected energy shortages as demand increases while we shut down power generation assets.

Certainly we may want to, at some time in the future, shut down all coal fired plants.  We may collectively wish to see other energy sources used as well.  But that would require a coherent transition plan, viable alternatives, phasing and a little common sense (or essentially being in touch with the reality that one finds around them).

This is  a agenda driven, safely-after-the-election, regulatory fiat that will cost workers their jobs and consumers a higher portion of their earned income in poor economic times.

Another, among a myriad of reasons why the man in the White House needs to be in his own house come 2014.

~McQ

Twitter: @McQandO

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67 Responses to In the midst of terrible economic times, let’s raise energy prices dramatically and lay people off …

  • The Collective is regressive…having as their stated (sometimes, in between lies) goal the dismantling of the modern society that rationality and The Enlightenment have provided us.
    They want very much to take us back to times of fewer choices, a far lower standard of living, and a much darker world.  The dystopic vision in so many movies about the future is not an accident.  It is what they want…what they see for all of us.

    • “what they see for all of us.”

      Trust me, not what they see for all of them.  Through the magic of their own fantasy, they expect they will be somehow exempt for the reality they have thrust on the rest of us.

       

      • Oh, I grant that TOTALLY.  One sees it uniformly NOW.
        And…to a very great degree…they WILL exempt themselves from a reality they IMPOSE on all the rest of us.
        IFFFFFF we allow them…

      • I have no doubt that they will in fact, be immune.  Look at China.  Look at Cuba. Look at Soviet Russia.  Good treatment for the top dogs, the rest have the misery.

      • Of course. Every society needs a shepherd to protect the sheep from the big bad Capitalist wolves and lead them to greener(heh) pastures. Call them the ‘vanguard of the proletariat’ or ‘community activists’, its the same crew of enlightened, caring and compassonate folks.

      • “greener(heh) pastures”

        From seat belt laws, to laws mandating they be able to control our electric use remotely, yeah, we need fear no evil, for they maketh us to do good and force us in the path of righteousness for their power’s sake.

    • One German organic farm has killed twice as many people as the Fukushima nuclear disaster and the Gulf Oil spill combined.

  • Rags, they see it for us but not for themselves.
    “Of all tyrannies a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victim may be the most oppressive. It may be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies.  The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated, but those who torment us for our own good
    will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience.”   C. S. Lewis

  • I’m sure you have all seen this but I will post it in case some haven’t.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hdi4onAQBWQ

    It amazed me that so many union coal miners voted for him knowing he wanted to put them out of work.

  • I will tell you why they are doing this now.  Because they could not do it while Robert Byrd was alive. He was a first class A-hole, but he protected the coal industry.

  • All conspiracy theories about Obama wanting to crush the people and establish himself as dictator of America aside, the Democrats use the EPA to hurt the Big Three (Oil, Coal, Natural Gas) in favor of their environmentalist and alternative energy friends, and the Republicans use business regulations and subsidies to favor the Big Three and make it more difficult for alternative energy companies to compete.  Everyone talks about over-regulation snuffing out businesses (which, don’t get me wrong, I’m not denying that it does), but most people ignore the fact that our antitrust are essentially no longer enforced, also a major factor in inhibiting competition and, thus, the growth of new business.

    Because we tend to elect parties instead of politicians, the parties do as much damage as they can while they have power because they know they’re going to lose it and that the other party will get its day to control the government.  We have no balance, so we can expect nothing more than this.  The politicians are going to do what is necessary to keep getting the fat campaign checks and the cushy lecture-circuit jobs that they love so much.

    Now that I’ve ranted sufficiently enough to satisfy my argumentative nature, I must say that I agree with your plan of phasing out coal plans to transition to viable alternatives.  I think alternative energy in general will be a great investment for our nation.

    • “All conspiracy theories about Obama wanting to crush the people and establish himself as dictator of America aside”

      I missed those, sounds like the crap I heard about Clinton (The UN was going to occupy Texas….talk about a laugh riot conspiracy….) and then equally crazy things that W was going to do too.

      I guess it’s what people have to fall back on while they’re waiting for the Mayan calendar ending (probably a part of their Mayan end of the world scenario actually – Obama takes over US, causes world war three, world ends in 2012 “in accordance with prophecy”.

    • Which alternative energy?   They’d be better served finding a way to really make ‘clean coal’ here in the US because of it’s abundance.

      • By alternative energy, I mean energy based on renewable resources.  True, “clean coal” is something that should also be encouraged.  I suppose I was overreaching a bit into discussions about oil and natural gas.

        • I can’t imagine a ‘renewable’ resource ever producing nearly enough – unless we develop some kind of essentially frictionless bearing, by itself that would change the game, coupled with a breakthrough in solar collection.  I’m concluding renewable is solar or wind.

          Every one of the renewable alternatives with current tech will ultimately prove to be as environmentally damaging as any hydroelectric plant ever built with technology from 1910, and less reliable.  Nothing is free, it’s just ‘in vogue’ because we don’t have enough of it to understand how damaging it will be on the scale necessary to prove useful.

          OR….of course we manage to figure out a way to need less ‘current’ to operate the electronics our way of life depends on.

          But the latest plan seems to rely on the premise that necessity is the mother of invention, and that driving up the costs for everyone will spur someone to invent a way around it.  NOT an economically sound principle for a nation teetering on the rim of a depression.

    • but most people ignore the fact that our antitrust [laws] are essentially no longer enforced

      What the FLUCK are you blathering about?  Put up some evidence to support that.

      • I agree with him, for the most part both Dems and Republicans have allowed all sorts of mergers and acquisitions for the last twenty years that should have at least thrown up a red flag.

        That is the reason why we had financial institutions that were “Too big to fail”.  And there are not enough regional banks left to provide the start up financing that we should have on the local level.

        • Cite to an instance of a merger and/or acquisition that DID NOT get red-flagged, please.
          What you are saying is that regulation TENDS not to do what it PRETENDS to do.
          What it DOES is raise the costs of entry, generally…which is WHY the incumbent businesses are typically the REAL movers behind regulation.
          We agree on the DANGEROUS fallacy of any enterprise being “too big to fail”.  That is a flat lie; EVERY enterprise HAS to be both ABLE to fail, and ENABLED to fail.

          • Noerr-Pennington doctrine and Parker immunity doctrine.  Look those up.  Furthermore, a study of the antitrust legislation will likely result in the realization that it has been scaled back so that there are exemptions that keep it from doing what it was originally intended to do.  For example, banks have numerous exemptions; thus, we have a system where a half dozen banks can collapse the economies of the nation and most of the world.

            And “red-flagging” something is different than prohibiting it. Thus, my using of the word “enforced” and not “codified.”  There have been a number of times where mergers and acquisitions were flagged, but allowed to happen anyway via the courts, i.e., the antitrust laws were not enforced.

            I do not have time to search the annals of business history and school you on all the examples of questionable mergers and acquisitions, nor do I think that would satisfy you, Rags.  It is naive to think that government can adequately control the economy, but it is equally naive to think that the private sector entities will not use all of their money and pull within the government to reduce market competition and maintain their superiority within the markets.

            Now you may return to “blathering” about your dystopian futures and Collectives and towing the rhetorical line that your own little collective has established.

            By the way, thanks for fixing my typo. It was most vexing to me.

          • There have been a number of times where mergers and acquisitions were flagged, but allowed to happen anyway via the courts, i.e., the antitrust laws were not enforced.

            But, OBVIOUSLY, they WERE enforced.
            You just don’t like due process, apparently.
            Apropos our discussion–
            http://hotair.com/greenroom/archives/2011/06/13/why-nea-supports-att-merger-with-t-mobile/
            The PRIMARY exemption from anti-trust law is granted to unions, btw.

            I do not have time to search the annals of business history and school you on all the examples of questionable mergers and acquisitions, nor do I think that would satisfy you, Rags.

            No.  I’m sure you don’t.  Principally because you don’t know what you are talking about.  That learning curve WOULD require some time.

            …it is equally naive to think that the private sector entities will not use all of their money and pull within the government to reduce market competition and maintain their superiority within the markets.

            Wull, duh.  Adam Smith told us ALLLLLLL about that over 200 years ago.  Which is WHY I deplore Obamic fascist economic policy as I do.  Which is the driving force behind the issue of this post by McQ.
            Geez.
             

          • ” It is naive to think that government can adequately control the economy, but it is equally naive to think that the private sector entities will not use all of their money and pull within the government to reduce market competition and maintain their superiority within the markets.”

            In case you didn’t note, in your own citation, the common theme is GOVERNMENT being the problem.  Neither unable to control, nor unable to prevent itself from being used to exert control to the detriment of others.

            But I have to admit, we have seen mergers over the last decade that strike me as approved monopolies, to cite personal experience, JP Morgan Chase managed to acquire my car loans, my mortgage, various regional banks I did business with or provided software support for, several of my credit card accounts…I hardly think they have done it just so I can do one stop financial business.

          • I fail to see how flagging something as illegal and then allowing it to occur anyway is due process.  Would you care to elaborate on that?
            I suppose it is due process when McDonald’s patrons sue for millions because they spill hot coffee on themselves or get fat because they eat a lot of cheeseburgers.  Perhaps all of the federal judges striking down constitutional state laws everywhere are just participating in due process.  We should tell everyone out there who decries judicial activism to just relax… it’s due process.  Do the libertarian principles of simplified codes of justice and judicial adherence to them when it is sensible only apply to cases against liberal overreaching?

            There is a difference in the learning curve, in that the one I measure myself by isn’t a straight line that’s labeled “Tea Party.”

            But since you’re not as stupid as I am, please explain to me how the financial institutions in question are not monopolies simply because they get exemptions?  I would love to argue semantics.  Then we can talk about how corporations are actually people and have souls and should be protected against mean people because they laws say they are.  We can discuss how fraud isn’t fraud when a few hundred people defraud several million people, but it’s still fraud if one guy defrauds a few dozen because the legal system allows it.  That’s what due process is all about, right?  The manipulation of legal semantics to make the illegal legal, to make up down.  Those are solid libertarian principles, indeed.

      • I fail to see how flagging something as illegal and then allowing it to occur anyway is due process.

        I can see that you fail to see any number of things.
        But…for general edification…here is how it works, nimrod.
        1. BIG mergers and acquisitions (and some middling and small ones, too) RAISE the interest of regulators.
        2. The regulators FLAG the proposed transaction for investigation.
        3. Businesses spend HUGE amounts of money to satisfy the (real or imagined) concerns of bureaucrats.
        4. Sometimes, they fail.
        5. Highly paid and specialized lawyers for the regulatory agencies bring actions to enjoin the transaction.
        6. They make their case, and the involved businesses make theirs.
        7. A highly paid and (usually) carefully briefed judge makes a decision.
        8. That decision is subjected to APPEAL.
        See?
        I can tell you really do not like this whole “freedom” thing, and think it ought to be more carefully controlled by “smart people”.

        • Oh, are we picking and choosing what parts of each others arguments we are responding to?

          In that case…
           

          I… do not like this whole “freedom” thing, and think it ought to be more carefully controlled by “smart people”.


          Oh really? That’s unfortunate, Rags.

          I don’t see how any of this applies to my arguments for simplifying the legal code and having judges that more closely adhere to the letter of the law when possible and sensible.  How is that not liking freedom and wanting control by “smart people?”

          In fact, it seems like you’re just copying and pasting arguments that you would use in an argument against a liberal arguing for activists judges and government mandated purchases of health insurance to argue against simplicity in the legal system and stricter adherence to the letter of the law when it is rational.  Have you spent too much time memorizing Michelle Malkin’s talking points?

          I guess congratulations to you for having a basic understanding of the legal system and a significant ability to pepper your arguments with basic insults.

        • But, sonny, you don’t “argue”.  You run all over the place.  So, yeah, I have to pick which goat-trail to follow.
          Let us recapitulate…
          You assert “…the fact that our antitrust are essentially no longer enforced…”.  I call on you for some support for this truly asinine claim.
          You reply with the inapposite reference to “Noerr-Pennington doctrine and Parker immunity doctrine”, which each date from roughly half a century ago, and have NOTHING to do with enforcement of anti-trust laws.  In other words…zip.
          You NEXT make the STOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOoooooooooooooooooooooooooooopid assertion that, “There have been a number of times where mergers and acquisitions were flagged, but allowed to happen anyway via the courts, i.e., the antitrust laws were not enforced”.  This is conflated with a McDonald’s tort case (which you ALSO know shit about) and a beeeee-zare ramble about judicial activism.  I call you on that.  Your substantial reparte…zip, again.
          Finally, you claim your “arguments” are all about simplifying the legal code (anti-trust law is some of the MOST complex on the books, idiot), and gratuitously insulting Michelle Malkin (what SHE did to hurt your very odd feelings is totally beyond me).  Substance????  Nada.
          Elsewhere, you demonstrate a breathtaking…but perversely proud…ignorance of basic economics and the workings of markets.
          Let me…in passing…note you also seem confused as to “banks” and BANKS.  Not uncommon.  “Community banks” have almost no relation to INVESTMENT BANKS except the obvious use of “bank”.  Dummy.
          Finally, you alluded to a “bug” in need of “squashing”.  Really…???  Please, Nigerian.

          • Well, I can’t argue with that logic.  You point something out, say it’s stupid, and then move on.  Flawless.

            Congratulations on once again not actually addressing any of my arguments and, instead, throwing around insults and accusing me of a lack of understanding while not actually explaining how I’m wrong on the issue yourself.  You continue to throw around technicalities and ignore the principles in question. Naturally, that is the easiest thing to do.

            Substance indeed, my friend.

            Don’t be offended that I no longer respond to your comments, but I simply have too many conversations like this already with my teenage daughter.

          • Yeah, no.  I see your problem.  You make a claim, I ask for support, you say “squirrel”, and I don’t chase.
            Here’s the deal, sonny…I know what I’m talking about.  You clearly got WAY out of your depth.  You said some crap you thought sounded shiny, and got caught.
            Anti-trust law is AGGRESSIVELY enforced…often by people very eager to make a name for themselves.
            http://www.justice.gov/atr/cases/index.html#page=page-1
            I know this being a trial attorney.  I DO NOT do Federal anti-trust cases (WAY too complex), but it may surprise you to know that most states also have anti-trust law.  My state is very pro-competition, and I DO have considerable experience in the field.
            Follow the link I provided to learn just how big a pwn you have made yourself here.

          • I will respond to your last statement simply because I don’t want people who read this to think lawyers behave like you.  You are not a trial lawyer. In the off chance that you are, you’re certainly not a successful one.  You have too much free time.  I’d guess you are a pre-law student based on your basic understanding of the technicalities, the immaturity of your insults (“pwn?” really?), and your unnecessary aggression.  At most, you’re a clerk; though, I highly doubt it.

            You use the claim of being a trial lawyer to validate your arguments, but your rhetorical style is nothing like that of an experienced attorney.  You would not be allowed to behave this way in the courtroom.  I am the firm administrator at a firm of ~40 lawyers, and I’ve never dealt with attorneys (including opposing) who behave like you.  Yes, many attorneys are jerks and overly aggressive, but even in informal arguments they are more calculating than insulting.  I’ll happily admit that I’ve been run around by lawyers many a time in political discussions, and none of them have had to resort to dropping insults two dozens times in one statement to get their point across.  It comes naturally to them as they are highly experienced in academic and courtroom decorum.

            Clearly, you are not.  You will no doubt say that you lose the lawyer act because you’re talking on a blog and not in the court, but it is not something that is so easily turned off.

            You can call me stupid as many times as you’d like, but don’t claim to be something you are not–don’t take esteem you haven’t earned.

            You certainly have the aggressive attitude necessary to succeed in law school, but if you don’t temper yourself you won’t even be let in on depositions.

            That is all I have to say to you, now and forever.

          • Oh, dear.  Weighed in the balances of a “firm admin.” and found wanting!!!
            Note!!!
            Not ONE word about the link that proves this little puke has been talking out his butt all day!
            Mark well.  Next time this prig shows up, you have the goods to put his crap in context.

  • FLASH….
    Moonpony engineering bites…!!!
    ELECTRIC cars could produce higher emissions over their lifetimes than petrol equivalents because of the energy consumed in making their batteries, a study has found.
    An electric car owner would have to drive at least 129,000km before producing a net saving in CO2. Many electric cars will not travel that far in their lifetime because they typically have a range of less than 145km on a single charge and are unsuitable for long trips. Even those driven 160,000km would save only about a tonne of CO2 over their lifetimes. …
    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/health-science/electric-cars-may-not-be-so-green-after-all-says-british-study/story-e6frg8y6-1226073103576
    Witch-doctors running our choices.
    Morons.

    • Bu…Bu….but……green!  Battery!  Electric from wind and solar!  It HAS TO BE BETTER!!! IT HAS TO BE!!!!!!!!  We said all the right things, we did the magic backward dance and waved the properly euthanized cat around our head at midnight in the graveyard of the capitalist past!  We eschewed the wasteful outdated barbaric technologies of our forefathers Rags!  IT MUST BE BETTER, CLEANER, SAFER and BELOVED OF GAIA!!!!!!!

    • Okay >deep breath<, phew, I’m over my moment.

      You understand what has to be done……

      BURY THIS STORY AND STUDY, DISCREDIT THE AUTHORS.

    • Come on you just are not trying, we could build a car with a DYNAMIC WIND POWER COLLECTOR*

      * formerly called a sail.

      • Remember Disney’s Wind Wagon Smith…???
        I recommend we insist all Congressional ambulances be Wind Powered.  (Jokes about Congressional wind ensue)

      • Like THESE OH BOY!!!!!

        Clearly, a viable alternative – just like electric generation, long as the wind is blowing enough to push your buggy, it’s all good, right?

        • Better yet!  A Whike!

          At an estimated $5,000, a real deal!  Green as green gets!

          Full disclosure, I have nothing to do with the sale (or sail) or profit from Whikes.

        • I care little about CO2 emissions when I talk about alternative energy; though, I congratulate you all on successfully arguing against a point I never made.  My concern is with our ability to compete globally.

          Americans like to think we’re the only ones in the world who use oil and that the Saudis and other Middle Eastern dictators will gladly continue to sell us their relatively cheap oil as long as we have a big military and money to pay for it.  Never mind that the rest of the world is growing, buying cars, opening factories, and building power plants or that the rest of the world doesn’t care as much about Israel as we do (something that our Middle Eastern friends find very frustrating).  Ignore the fact that OPEC recently refused to increase exports because they’re more concerned with protecting their own wealth than ours.  Don’t trouble yourself with the fact that China and Russia have been actively competing against us for natural resources and protecting our enemies in the Middle East against economic sanctions in the UN and other international institutions.  Everything will be fine.  No one could ever possibly outmatch America, just like no one could ever outmatch Rome or 18th Century Britain.

          And, sure we can increase domestic drilling (something I have no problem with), but we can never equal our demand.

          Doesn’t it make since to start researching and investing in alternatives to fossil fuels so that we’re ahead of the game when the other 6.5 billion people in the world start using oil as much as we do?

          • “Sense” not “since” in that last sentence.  I’ve learned to let most typos go, but I had to correct that one.

          • If it made sense, then the market would do it.
            East German-style planned economics is NOT the path to innovation, but RUIN.
            Price information would inform each of us of a growing need to make OUR choices.  The MAJOR component of the rise in energy costs in the U.S. is POLICY, not paucity.
            Whadda dope.

          • “Doesn’t it make since to start researching and investing in alternatives to fossil fuels so that we’re ahead of the game when the other 6.5 billion people in the world start using oil as much as we do?”

            Yes, in a simple word, by all means.  But let’s not pretend that we can replace the current infrastructure of power generation, nor continue to use the very same means we HAVE to generate it (as in, build NEW plants to burn coal) while we expand and improve the technology for alternatives that are in fact useful and renewable.  Continue to invest in research, but let’s not pretend the ‘new’ ‘green’ tech we have is actually a currently viable alternative to the old tech yet.   It is not.  Instead it’s a funnel for cash into the pockets of a few, using government to force it.

            By removing coal from the equation, we ARE competing for resources with Russia, and China, we ARE sacrificing our domestic capacity in favor of relying on OPEC.  That is the VERY POINT, we are willingly choosing the seeming green desire to see the United States take a back seat and become as useful as the faded British Empire.

            I don’t want us to follow the path of old technology to our grave, but be realistic, we cannot get to the new technology without the old to stand by us until we can sensibly create and use logical, practical alternatives.
             

          • “since” vs “sense”

            If I start nit picking on typos I’m a dead man.

          • Saudis and other Middle Eastern dictators will gladly continue to sell us their relatively cheap oil as long as we have a big military and money to pay for it.

            ANOTHER stupid statement.
            How big is the Japanese military?  Or Spain’s?
            All that matters…or should…is a willing buyer and a willing seller.
            BTW, I guess you missed class when they were relating that the BULK of our imports of oil are from Mexico and Canada.
            But that was harsh, I know…
             

          • And I suppose you missed class when they talked about Canada importing half of its oil.  Essentially we are indirectly importing oil from the Middle East through Canada which imports its oil from other countries that import their oil from–TA DA!–the Middle East.  And imports from Saudi are approximately equal to Mexico, though I wouldn’t be surprised if we also use Mexico to import oil indirectly, from countries like Venezuela.
            Your turn, Rags.

          • Oh… and I’m not sure what you’re arguing about when you talk about the military of Spain and Japan.  We spend six times as much as China on our military or, if you’d prefer, more than China, France, the UK, Russia, Japan, Germany, Saudi Arabia, Italy, India, Brazil, South Korea, Canada, Australia, Spain, the UAE, Turkey, Israel, the Netherlands, Greece, and Columbia combined.

            It doesn’t seem to be doing us much good internationally, especially in regards to China and the Middle East.

          • Ya know…
            There really isn’t a point anywhere in all that crap to which I need respond.
            Matter of fact, you unwittingly (let me stress that) made my points.
             

          • China and the military – I’d be uh, skeptical about the spending of the Chinese military and our estimation of it.


            The Chinese policy is not to boast, and making your military spending a matter of open public record as we are required to do is probably not big on the list of rules they have to follow in their ‘democracy’.  Ours we may not know precisely where it all goes, but we have a rough idea of what it is – I doubt that with China we even have a real idea of the actual amount, let alone what they did with it (yes, I have THAT much faith in our foreign intelligence organizations….)

          • Explain to me your point that I unwittingly made, and if I did so and it wasn’t my original point then I will admit such.

          • So…this oil importing thingie we’re doing….if we were using more plants that burned coal we’d have to  …import coal from Western Saudi Arabia?  ;)

            Coal, Newcastle – same concept.

            Whereas unbuilt solar and wind farms are providing power only to unbuilt homes and factories in the US at present.  ;)

          • Sorry, looker, I’ve been reading your comments, but there’s a bug annoying me.  I have to squash it.

          • “Doesn’t it make since to start researching and investing in alternatives to fossil fuels…”

            Uh, you must have missed the last 40 years or so. Such research and investment has been going on at least that long. Some day those alternatives may even be competitive with fossil fuels.

          • “ Essentially we are indirectly importing oil from the Middle East through Canada….”

            That is why oil and other commodities are called ‘fungible’. We sell Alaskan oil to Japan and at the same time import oil from other countries. Sort of a global market thingee.  

        • oh, and for clarity, I don’t consider oil and natural gas to be ‘renewable’, though we can manufacture gas via the natural processes.

          People also need to remember even as I type this, somewhere the natural processes that create ‘oil’ are still at work creating oil, it’s just a question of where, and whether or not we’re taking it out faster than it can be created.

          The world’s natural processes continue apace despite our lordly control and influence over them.

          • That’s a valid point, and I’m not saying we should abandon oil, natural gas, or coal.  I’m simply saying it is always prudent to diversify.

          • I’m simply saying it is always prudent to diversify.

            I love it when people say stupid generalities like that.  Really?  Always?
            ROFLMAO…!!!

      • No no, you two go on, just as long as we avoid breaking out into ‘vietnamese’.  :)

        It’s all a matter of discussion, after all very little we type here will affect a damn thing that happens in the real world other than perhaps to change someone’s (myself, for example) awareness of things.

      • Quick follow-up to this…

        And I suppose you missed class when they talked about Canada importing half of its oil.  Essentially we are indirectly importing oil from the Middle East through Canada which imports its oil from other countries that import their oil from–TA DA!–the Middle East.  And imports from Saudi are approximately equal to Mexico, though I wouldn’t be surprised if we also use Mexico to import oil indirectly, from countries like Venezuela.
        Your turn, Rags.

        This is bullshit.  Canada imports oil into the Eastern Provinces from NORWAY…the NORTH SEA.  And ONLY because it is more economical than trying to transport it across country from the Western Provinces.

        Canada’s oil economy is now a dual market. Refineries in western Canada run domestically produced crude oil, refineries in Quebec and the eastern provinces run primarily imported crude oil while refineries in Ontario run a mix of both imported and domestically produced crude oil. Canadian oil imports can be explained by the vast distances existing between the oil production sites, mainly located in the west, and consumption centres for products, that are located mainly in Quebec and Ontario. It is less costly for refineries in central and Eastern Canada to import offshore crude oil than to transport crude oil from Western Canada. This ensures more competitively priced petroleum products for consumers in all markets.

        http://www.nrcan.gc.ca/eneene/sources/crubru/outape-eng.php
        So, again, we see that “Brainz” is lying…or at least knows not his ass from his brainz.

        • Honestly I looked too, they do import Saudi oil, and I got that from a Canadian government site  just to be sure there was some basis in fact.

          As a world market though, arguably, everybody does – my minimal understanding is it effectively goes into a big pool and is sold from there.  A factor I must remind myself of every time we talk about drilling for more oil in the US, which will only go into the big pool, and be sold to the highest bidder, rather than being sequestered in tanks here in the US for US consumption only.

          The quality of the oil, for example the venezauelan stuff changes the place it sits in the market, because Hugo’s oil is full of, what, sulpher? and needs more processing, so as I understand it, it’s not in the same pool as the sweet crudes and can be differentiated that way.

  • The jury is in. Øbama is not stupid, he’s not incompetent, he’s not ill-informed: Øbama is out to destroy the American economic system. Time for the gloves to come off when dealing with him, or anyone who supports him.

  • People will use wood to heat their homes in the winter.  That is until they are taxed to death for emissions and laws are put into place making it illegal to use a fireplace.

    I bet that Al Gore’s 10K square foot home will still have adequate heat and cooling though.

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