Bush responded by saying, That's not an energy policy! He sensibly proposed that we explore for more oil with the latest environmentally sensitive technologies to ensure our lessened dependence on OPEC and oil-controlling lunatics like Saddam Hussein.
Let's see, who should go get the oil from our domestic oil reserves? Big Jell-O companies? Big Car companies? The trial lawyers? No! The oil companies. Somebody has to get the stuff that runs our DVD players and allows us to go to the bathroom indoors. Being for a free market in oil is called being for "Big Oil."
Meanwhile, pretty much every "energy crisis" this country has ever experienced can be traced back to some government policy mucking up the free market.
President Nixon was the first to instigate government interference in the oil market. He instituted "Project Independence" in 1974 with the expressed goal of making America independent of foreign oil. Just 15 years later, America's dependence on foreign oil had risen from 35 percent to 45 percent.
Sweater-wearing Jimmy Carter instituted his own macho energy policy, Project MEOW (Moral Equivalent of War), against foreign oil. He established import quotas, placed rations on oil and signed a "windfall profits" tax.
Anticipating nuts like Gore, Carter also encouraged the development of alternative sources of fuel, including oil shale and solar power. (And that's why we're all driving solar-powered cars today.) Congress jumped on the nut-case bandwagon and issued an official declaration stating that bicycles are "the most efficient means of transportation." This was a really loopy country in the '70s.
Massive gas shortages ensued, gas lines became interminable serpentine nightmares, and America's reliance on imported foreign oil doubled. Finally, a man entered the Oval Office and rescued the country from its terminal silliness. On the day Ronald Reagan was inaugurated, his first executive order was to lift all energy price controls. Oil prices soared in the short term (damn those oil companies!), but as a consequence, domestic production and exploration skyrocketed -- triggering a 20-year low in oil prices.
Bush will give us a free market in oil so we can afford to keep the lights on. Gore will boldly lead us into the post-industrial Dark Age. Cardigan sweaters or SUVs? Over to you, America.
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