In this case they’re right, but for the wrong reasons.
While the centerpiece of the bill feels right — $16 billion in oil and gas tax increases to fund renewable energy and energy conservation — the devil is in the details.
The details make this a very weak bill. More important, the whole assumption behind it — that energy "supply" must be big, delivered from central facilities over long distance power lines — is false.
The bill does not, as reporters claim, "increase taxes" on "energy producers." It simply recoups tax breaks that were not designed to be given, but were seized by energy company lawyers. At best, it works along the margins. Remember, $16 billion over 10 years is $1.6 billion per year. In the grand scheme of things, it’s chickenfeed.
And where does the money go? It goes to many of the same companies who are opposing it, telling them that to get the money they must simply replace their fuel stocks.
Ethanol and coal gasification and coal liquifaction, the primary
beneficiaries of the current "alternative energy" boom, are simply
Hydrocarbon-for-hydrocarbon gets us nowhere in the
underlying war against oil.
The only way for conservatives to beat Hugo Chavez, Vladimir Putin,
Osama bin Laden, and all their other bogeymen is to stop buying the
hydrocarbons which give them their power over us. We need an entirely
new energy system, based on the Sunlight which falls on our country,
the winds that blow across our country, the heat of the Earth under our
By creating electricity from domestic sources and turning the excess
into hydrogen, which we "burn" in fuel cells from which we recoup
water, we leave the system of our enemies, and become self-sufficient.
We also create new technologies which we can use to regain our footing
in the world economy, footing which is lost every week we’re paying
Chavez, Putin, and bin Laden’s relatives for our energy supplies.
Substituting like-for-like does not get you out of the box. As
prices decline, our enemies can simply drop their prices slightly,
below our production costs for hydrocarbon alternatives, leaving us
worse off than before.
Now, having gotten your attention and explained where you need to be, you can go back to haunting Democrats.