Your Energy Future Under the Democrats

Your Energy Future Under the Democrats

By Larrey Anderson

The “energy plan” announced by the Democrats offers one thing: a significant slowdown of our economy for at least twenty years. Those who run both legislative branches of the congress, and the energy plans of both of their leading candidates for president clothe themselves in the mantle of righteousness. That the Republicans are allowing this to happen, right before our eyes, tells us much about the sad state of American politics.

 

From their official website, here is the summary paragraph (including the bad grammar) of the Democrat plan to solve the energy crisis:

 

We will create a cleaner, greener and stronger America by reducing our dependence on foreign oil, eliminating billions in subsidies for oil and gas companies and use the savings to provide consumer relief and develop energy alternatives, and investing in energy independent technology.

 

This is also the Democrat solution.  Get it?  The Democrat plan is the Democrat solution. In logic this is called petitio principii or “begging the question.”

 

Ask yourself: which of the five components of the “plan” should happen first?  “Reducing our dependence on foreign oil” is listed first.  But it cannot happen first.  In order to keep the economy moving ahead, some type of energy must replace foreign oil-and this energy must be tangible, readily available, and close to the market price of the energy it is replacing.

 

This is a crucial point and very few people seem to understand it.  We cannot solve the energy crisis by talking about the creation of, say, hydrogen fuel cells for cars.  We must have a fully functioning economy in the intervening thirty or forty years that it will take to “develop energy alternatives” like hydrogen fuel cells. In other words, the pressing question is not “What energy alternative will we be using in forty years?”  The real question is: What energy alternative will we be using tomorrow that will allow us the economic prosperity to create future alternative energies much further down the road?

 

Presently, over eighty-five per cent of our energy comes from “fossil fuels.” We use more than twenty million barrels of oil every day in this country. For the economy to expand and give us time to create alternative forms of energy we will need more, not less, moderately priced fossil fuels in the intervening years. Nowhere in the Democrat plan is there a strategy to provide this energy.

 

Make no mistake, we are entering an energy crisis. At five dollars a gallon a typical low-income family will spend nearly 20% of total income on gasoline each year. At ten dollars a gallon these people will not get to work — especially in rural or suburban America where a car is an absolute must.

 

Where will the desperately needed and moderately priced energy come from? Most of the currently developed oil fields are in the hands of dictators, like Hugo Chavez and the Saudi Royal Family or in the hands of socialist governments, like Norway, Mexico, and Russia. They can afford to keep production low and prices high. Indeed, given their controlled economies, it makes absolute economic sense for them to do so. It is our job (not Saudi Arabia’s) to develop new natural gas and oil resources to help stem rising energy costs.

 

The Democrat plan also calls for “eliminating billions in subsidies for oil and gas companies.” (I could not discover when and how the federal government has provided “billions in subsides for oil and gas companies.” I assume that this really means raising taxes on oil and gas companies.) How is this strategy going to provide one gallon of fuel for Americans? It certainly has not worked in the past when price controls and higher taxes have always led to long lines at the gas pumps.

 

The Democrats are playing a very dangerous game.[i]  If we do not have a viable, recession free, economy in the short and medium term, then we will not get to a “cleaner, greener and stronger America” in the long run.  We will not be able to sustain short-term economic growth that leads to long-term technological development without moderately priced energies being available throughout the process.

 

Republicans, if they are truly interested in America’s future, had better start to point out the obvious flaws in the Democrats’ “plan.” Time to start drilling.
Larrey Anderson is a philosopher and writer living in Idaho.  He can be reached at ldandersonbooks.com

 


[i] Recently passed legislation that tinkered with our strategic oil reserves is nothing but a shallow ploy to try and lower gasoline prices a bit by Election Day. (That is all that the recently passed legislation will do-if it even does that-it is clearly an incumbents’ reelection bill.) The fact that Republican senators rolled over (after their legislation to explore and drill for more domestic natural gas and oil was easily killed), and unanimously (minus one) voted for the Democrat sponsored bill indicates that elected Republicans are far more interested in staying in office than in solving the energy crisis.

Has ‘Peak Oil’ Arrived–Many analysts see a speculation “premium” of at least $25 bbl

Has ‘Peak Oil’ Arrived

Rick Moran
A Vice President of Russia’s largest independent oil company says that oil production in that country has peaked and in the future will begin declining:

Russian oil production has peaked and may never return to current levels, one of the country’s top energy executives has warned, fuelling concerns that the world’s biggest oil producers cannot keep up with rampant Asian demand.

The warning helped on Tuesday to push crude oil prices to a fresh all-time high above $112 a barrel, threatening to stoke inflation in many countries.

US crude oil West Texas Intermediate surged in London trading to $113.06 a barrel, above last week’s record of $112.21 a barrel. It later traded 125 cents higher at $113.01 a barrel.

Leonid Fedun, the 52-year-old vice-president of Lukoil, Russia’s largest independent oil company, told the Financial Times he believed last year’s Russian oil production of about 10m barrels a day was the highest he would see “in his lifetime”.
 
Russia is the world’s second biggest oil producer. Mr Fedun compared Russia with the North Sea and Mexico, where oil production is declining dramatically, saying that in the oil-rich region of western Siberia, the mainstay of Russian output, “the period of intense oil production [growth] is over”.

Part of Russia’s problem has been nearly 40 years of pumping those Siberian wells at full capacity according to many oil experts. This was a result of the Communists (and later the Russian Republic’s) desperate need for hard currency. That and the fact that the Soviet’s especially used very inefficient means to pump the oil out of the ground.

Now the Russian oil industry is more productive but their primary fields are becoming less viable due to decreased pressure at the wellhead which makes it harder to get the oil that is still down there. Recovery of the remaining oil will be more expensive but at more than $100 bbl it is certainly worth it.

The question about other big fields like the North Sea and Mexico is one of investment in new facilities versus the likely return. There is also opposition in some countries because of the environmental risks. Hence, declining output from those two major suppliers will be significant as the current fields gradually decline.

The Middle East is a different story. The spigot in Saudi Arabia and the Gulf States is not wide open despite jawboning from Bush and other western leaders. Analysts estimate that another 2 million bbl could be pumped if the Arabs so chose. Why should they when customers keep bidding up the price of what they’re already taking out of the ground?

If the west goes into recession, demand will fall off and prices will ease – how much is anyone’s guess. At that point, the current solidarity on price of oil producing states may fall apart and it will be every country for itself, pumping more oil to keep market share and profits up.

We are not at peak oil yet, not even close. There are huge reserves in several places around the world including Africa, the Gulf of Mexico, Alaska, and South America. The problems today with high prices have much more to do with politics as they have to do with the world running out of oil. Unrest in Nigeria, war or the threat of war in the Middle East, Venezuela playing politics with supply, and a large increase in demand have combined to set the speculators in the commodities markets off on a frenzy. Many analysts see a speculation “premium” of at least $25 bbl – probably more now with this recent spike in oil prices.

The key is to dampen the speculators enthusiasm. Unfortunately, it may take a US recession for that to happen.

Undersecretary General of UN Indicted in Oil-for-Food Case

Undersecretary General of UN Indicted in Oil-for-Food Case


by Jim Kouri, CPP

 

United Nations Undersecretary General Benon Sevan of Cyprus and Ephraim Nadler, a/k/a “Fred Nadler” of New York City were indicted on charges of bribery and conspiracy to commit wire fraud, in connection with the United Nations Oil-for-Food Program.

From mid-2000 until March 2003, the Iraqi government’s regime conditioned the right to purchase oil under the Oil-for-Food Program on a purchaser’s willingness to pay a secret surcharge to Iraq. These secret payments were illegal kickbacks, made in violation of United Nations sanctions and United States criminal law.

Nadler allegedly participated in a scheme to make unlawful payments to the former government of Iraq in connection with the purchase of oil under the Oil-for-Food Program. Sevan, who at the time was the Executive Director of the United Nations Office of Iraq Program (the Office that operated the Oil-for-Food Program), as well as being the UN’s Undersecretary General, allegedly received almost $160,000 — money generated from the sale of Iraqi oil under the Program — from Nadler on behalf of Saddam Hussein’s government in Iraq.

Nadler is alleged to have helped a co-conspirator to obtain the right to buy Iraqi oil under the Oil-for-Food Program in exchange for commissions from the oil sales, and then allegedly funneled approximately $160,000 of these oil commissions to Sevan, according to the New York District Attorney’s Office, which will be prosecuting the case along with the US Attorney’s Office in New York.

Nadler and Sevan are charged with wire fraud, based on their depriving the United Nations of its right to Sevan’s honest services; bribery concerning an organization (the United Nations) that receives more than $10,000 annually from the federal government; and conspiracy to commit these offenses.

Nadler is also charged with conspiracy to commit wire fraud by engaging in prohibited financial transactions with Iraq and violating the International Emergency Economic Powers Act. If convicted, he faces a maximum sentence of 112 years’ imprisonment. If convicted, Sevan faces a maximum sentence of 50 years imprisonment.

The DA’s office reports that the United States government has issued warrants for the arrest of Nadler and Sevan with Interpol, and will seek their arrest and extradition to the United States.

The Oil-for-Food Program was created to provide critical humanitarian aid to the Iraqi people. But prior prosecutions by the District Attorney demonstrate that the former government of Iraq thoroughly corrupted the Program — by employing undisclosed Iraqi agents in the United States to try to influence the terms under which the program was adopted, and by demanding secret kickbacks from participants in the program during its operation.

The allegations in this current indictment that the Executive Director of the very program that was created to provide humanitarian aid to the Iraqi people was involved in such a scheme demonstrates how pervasive the corruption was, and how that corruption undermined the operation of the supposedly humanitarian program, according to US officials.

FBI Assistant Director Mark Mershon stated during a press conference in New York: “This indictment — which brings the number of individuals charged or convicted in our far-reaching investigation to 14 — strikes at the heart of the corruption that pervaded the Oil-for-Food program. As Executive Director of the program and Undersecretary General of the U.N., Benon Sevan was responsible for maintaining the program’s probity and propriety. Instead, his administration of the program was marked by profiteering and profligacy.”

“The Oil for Food Program was established to provide humanitarian relief to the Iraqi people, not to line the pockets of corrupt officials. The U.S. Attorney’s Office and the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office have joined forces to uncover and prosecute any corruption or other illegal activities connected to that program. Today’s indictment of the top UN official in charge of the Oil-for-Food Program and his business partner is an important step in our continuing investigation.”

The US investigation into criminal wrongdoing in the United Nations Oil-for-Food Program is continuing, with the Department of Justice and the New York District Attorney’s office working together.
 


Sources:  US Department of Justice, Federal Bureau of Investigation, New York District Attorney’s Office,
National Security Institute

Jim Kouri, CPP is currently fifth vice-president of the National Association of Chiefs of Police and he’s a staff writer for the New Media Alliance (thenma.org). He’s former chief at a New York City housing project in Washington Heights nicknamed “Crack City” by reporters covering the drug war in the 1980s. In addition, he served as director of public safety at a New Jersey university and director of security for several major organizations.  He’s also served on the National Drug Task Force and trained police and security officers throughout the country.   Kouri writes for many police and security magazines including Chief of Police, Police Times, The Narc Officer and others. He’s a news writer for TheConservativeVoice.Com and PHXnews.com.  He’s also a columnist for AmericanDaily.Com, MensNewsDaily.Com, MichNews.Com, and he’s syndicated by AXcessNews.Com.   He’s appeared as on-air commentator for over 100 TV and radio news and talk shows including Oprah, McLaughlin Report, CNN Headline News, MTV, Fox News, etc.  His book Assume The Position is available at Amazon.Com. Kouri’s own website is located at http://jimkouri.us

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