Saturday, October 08, 2005

more proof that congress will not lead us

friday's narrow, party-line energy bill vote in the house (rigged by repubs to gather all the foot-dragging repub voters that titleless-but-still-power-weilding delay could bully--- er, muster), once again demonstrates that our "elected" reps in congress simply will not lead us toward a sustainable future.

by a vote of 212-210, the bill offers incentives for the construction of new oil refineries, no new ones having been built in the u.s. since 1976. the vote was extended from the scheduled 5 minutes to 40 by controlling repubs--- an act denounced by house dems--- and we can thank weak-willed congressman wayne gilchrest, r-md for the narrow victory of madness, when he changed his vote from no to yes, presumably after 44 minutes of threats and harrangues by delay and the power mongers on that side of the aisle. I can imagine they threatened not only his standing in congress but his political career--- and possibly his life and family--- as well.

it's clearly up to us, folks. we can produce the "missing oil" overnight through easily-coordinated local efforts at conservation. not only have such savings been proven, they've been done before now. yet how long does it take to build and bring to full capacity a new oil refinery? god only knows, since none of recent design vintage have been tried in 30 years! it could take 5 or 10 years! (if the nuke power industry is a pertinent example, it may never happen at all.)

we must not wait to be led, we must take the reins and lead ourselves out of this hideous addiction.


At 10/09/2005 2:22 AM, Blogger tess said...

Offering an incentive to oil companies to build new refineries is a curious response to the situation, to say the least. Gift to BushCo supporters more than anything else, since clearly the oil companies would not have stopped building refineries if it hadn't been in their economic interest to do so. My question is, is BushCo planning to materialize nonexistent extra oil to run through that new extra capacity? Considering the only truly untapped oil resource that's significant enough to make a difference is actually in Canada, it seems more than absurd to count on extra refining capacity to do one blessed thing to help.

I had heard the phrase "peak oil" but didn't really understand what this was all about until I read a couple of books on the subject:
Out of Gas: the End of the Age of Oil by David Goodstein, and Kenneth Deffeyes' Beyond Oil: the View from Hubbert's Peak.

... Hubbert's ... huh?

Deffeyes and Goodstein are both clear-sighted, well-spoken authors with solid scientific and technical backgrounds. I recommend reading both books to anyone who wants to get familiar with what's going on and why.


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