Wednesday :: May 26, 2004

GOP Myths About Cause of Our Gas Shortage


by Steve

During the campaign, you will hear several reasons given by the GOP and Bushies as to why gas prices are high. One of the reasons given by the GOP is a lack of domestic refining capacity, and they will blame this on environmental regulations. The Cheney industry-written energy task force document did just this.

The problem with this argument, like many others used by the GOP when it comes to energy, is that it is a lie.

The GOP/Bush/Industry (they are all the same) argument about refining capacity and blaming a shortage of said capacity on clean gas and clean air regulations is credible only if you overlook the fact that the industry willingly reduced refining capacity collusively since the mid 90's to drive up profits by tightening supplies.

The Administration also wants you to ignore that they and their oil and auto industry contributors don't want to deal with the demand side of the equation by raising Corporate Average Fuel Economy standards because doing so affects the profits of the industries. SUVs generate huge profits for both industries, and Bush has encouraged them through tax breaks that dwarf what is available for the purchase of fuel efficient cars. The Administration and its buddies only want to deal with the supply side of the equation by drilling more, keeping supplies tight and profits high, and blaming the whole mess on environmentalists. Once the environmental regulations are gutted and the oil industry gets another tax break from the government to expand their previously-contracted refining capacity, watch how fast new capacity is brought on line, with the taxpayers footing the bill and paying the price through their declining public health.

So the next time you hear someone say the problem is with refining capacity and environmental regulations, remember that the industry created the problem themselves intentionally to drive up profits and steer debate in this country to a false choice between cheap gas and clean air.

Steve :: 12:10 AM :: Comments (6) :: Digg It!