Saturday, April 03, 2010

Drill, Baby, Drill

One of the most passionate refrains during the 2008 Presidential Election was Sarah Palin's cry of 'Drill, Baby, Drill!' It was particularly pertinent given the fact that petrol prices were topping $5 a gallon at the time.

'Drill, Baby, Drill!' might not have been enough to win the Republicans the election, but it did generate enough popular sentiment to make moderates question why America wasn't exploiting its own natural resources, instead of continuing to churn money over to the Saudi Arabians for their overpriced oil.

Well, we can't claim that Obama doesn't read people's t-shirts any more. On Wednesday, Barack sided with populist opinion and authorized offshore drilling on the East Coast and other formerly protected areas in Alaska and the Gulf of Mexico.

In one fell swoop, "Drill, Baby, Drill!" went from Republican battle cry to official White House strategy.

"And see this F-18 behind me? This motherf**ker runs off biofuel, bitches."
Obama's actual statement at Andrews Air Force Base, paraphrased for comedic value.


It's a stop-gap measure, Obama's the first to admit. There's not enough oil and natural gas to make the United States energy-independent; and even if there was, it undermines his determination to move to country towards adopting cleaner and more sustainable forms of energy.

However, it's a start.

Just as I suggested in my review of The Audacity of Hope, its a move that reveals Obama to be a pragmatic realist; willing to tackle the day-to-day issues facing average Americans (high gas prices, dependency on foreign oil), rather than cast their problems aside in favor of tackling esoteric, typically Democrat concerns like promoting overly conservative environmentalism and protecting polar bears (who have big teeth and claws, so should theoretically be able to look after themselves.)

Of course, not everybody's happy about it:

"Short of sending Sarah Palin back to Alaska to personally club polar bears to death," argued Brendan Cummings, senior counsel at the Center for Biological Diversity, "the Obama administration could not have come up with a more efficient extinction plan for the polar bear."

[Actually, in a Palin vs. Polar Bear smack down, my money's on the bear. Just sayin' - Editorial Bear]

It's also another maverick move that makes those who demonize President Obama deeply uncomfortable. How can he represent everything that conservative Americans stand against when he capitulates to one of their most vocal demands?

However, it just goes to show that this administration is dedicated to actually solving problems, instead of just cranking the meat-grinder of self-defeating political rhetoric and perpetuating the seemingly interminable stalemate that exists in Washington.

11 comments:

paul mitchell said...

Roland, y'all are so cute. Do NOT bother to tell anyone that the area that Obama approved for drilling is off the East coast and he also did away with drilling "permanently" in areas like the West coast and Alaska, where 75% of our reserves are. Try that on, he DID AWAY with drilling where the KNOWN oil is.

Not to mention that his "drilling" cannot happen until Congress lifts the ban in place. Like that will ever happen as long as Congress is led by the buffoons currently in office.

Just out of curiosity, wonder how much wasted money we are going to spend to fuel a plane that is the ONLY one of its type. Does this require retrofitting every US base on the planet?

If you think that Palin is stupid compared to Obama, there is a HUGE perception problem.

Roland Hulme said...

Hi Paul,

Actually, I didn't claim that Obama was smarter than Palin; just that Palin would lose a fight with a polar bear. I stand by that opinion!

One Salient Oversight said...

A dumb decision by Obama. Untapped oil reserves in the US are a "drop in the bucket" compared to US demand and the massive supply they get from the Middle East.

The US needs energy security. They should abandon their need for imported oil and embrace electric vehicles - which are in turn charged by the electricity grid, which should be powered by an increase in wind, solar, tidal, geothermal and possibly Thorium energy.

Andy said...

Roland, I'm a big fan of natural gas vehicles. I believe that's the way we need to move in the long term.

We have discovered incredible reserves in the Dallas, TX area, right here in the Shreveport area, and also in upstate New York. The new shale technology has literally allowed us to tap reserves that will last for up to a century (by some estimates). And, companies are exploring other areas right now that may be just as rich as these three finds.

And, Paul is right. The areas Obama proposes opening up are going to be extremely expensive to explore...probably prohibitive at current crude prices. And, that's IF Congress ever lifts the ban.

I'm also a big believer in Solar energy. But, the technology is just not there yet to make it affordable on a broad scale.

Susanne said...

I like when Editorial Bear makes comments. Nice to know that Obama is reading t-shirts.

Good post.

Count said...

Strategic reserves are the key I believe. If you have oil but can buy it before the end of the world you dont have to deplete what you have left in the basket. Alaska is and always has been that I think.

Mycroft,
Oxford

Jason said...

I agree with One Salient Oversight This is a token gesture that will not solve one energy issue. All sizzle and no steak as we say in the staffing industry.
How about conservation?
Why is no one talking about this? The big O aka Barry wants to expand Nuclear Plants, YIKES!! The waste water from that process is a disaster...Where is the Hope and Change? I think this President has become Brown Bush. He stands for all the same things just looks and speaks better.

paul mitchell said...

Jason, come on, you ARE paying attention. Obama said that about nukes because he knew that nothing would ever come of it, the left would cough up their skulls. It was his way of faking like he was moving toward the center.

Andy said...

Jason, you write, "How about conservation?
Why is no one talking about this?"

Jason, I have been hearing people talk about "conservation" for my entire 50 years on this planet. I do not think you will find ONE SINGLE THINKING HUMAN on the planet that does not understand the importance of conservation.

btw, there are new nuclear technologies using Thorium. The waste from it can be reused, and does not create "waste water."

Regardless, people ARE talking about conservation. I know I am...I have walked around the house for the last 25 or so years screaming at the top of my lungs, "Can't y'all learn to turn a damn light off when you leave a room? You will once you start paying the light bill!!!"

Andy said...

Oh crud! Is it THAT Jason?

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atheists deny their own life element...


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