Sunday, January 13, 2008

The Conch Republic and the Price of Gas

We just returned from a few days of vacationing in Key West, Florida, the southernmost point in the United States. Everywhere throughout this priceless jewel of scenic beauty, old-time Spanish architecture and fun-loving tourists are reminders that this island is only 90 miles from Cuba, and that, calling itself the Conch Republic, it recently once seceded from the USA and declared a brief war on us.

The war and its almost immediate surrender was to call attention to the dire consequences that the disastrous Mariel boatlift of 1980 (one of President Carter’s many terrible ideas) was having on Key West’s economy. I want to call attention again, though, to the fact that a newly-discovered, huge pool of oil and natural gas lies just slightly to the south of Key West, both in American and in Cuban waters.

China, Cuba reported in Gulf oil partnership
U.S. firms stand by, prohibited from bidding on contracts; lawmakers propose opening up U.S. coast for drilling.

May 9, 2006, (Excerpt)

“The United States Geological Survey estimates the Cuban deal involves 4.6 billion barrels of oil and 9.8 trillion cubic feet of natural gas, according to the (New York) Times. The paper said that's enough oil and gas to power the U.S. for a few months.

The paper also cited an Interior Department study that said the U.S. continental shelf contained 115 billion barrels of oil and 633 trillion cubic feet of natural gas. That would be enough oil to satisfy U.S. demand, at current consumption levels, for 16 years and enough natural gas for 25 years, according to the (New York)Times.

It would be a disaster for Key West and for any other coastal community of the Gulf of Mexico for a large oil spill to appear, but who would be most likely to take steps to prevent such a spill, a Chinese or an American oil company? And who would be most likely to help pay for the cleanup of such a spill? It is the height of stupidity for our Congress, backed mostly by Democrats, to continue to prevent American firms from drilling in the Gulf – especially now that Cuba has hired Chinese and Indian firms to undertake such exploration and drilling.

Despite the fact that we have huge oil reserves waiting to be tapped in the Gulf and in the ANWR area of Alaska, Congressional Democrats continue to oppose any measures that would free us from dependence on foreign oil and lower the price of gasoline and heating oil, while they continue the nonsense of subsidizing the failry tale of ethanol.

These Democrats are talking out of both sides of their mouths when they fake screaming about sending American troops to the Middle East, on the one hand, and then vote to stop the very steps that would help free us from dependence on foreign oil. Their two-faced approach also involves stopping the development of nuclear energy, since the rapid building of nuclear-electric plants would also help free us from this dependence while greatly improving the environment.

Labels: ,

AddThis Social Bookmark Button


At 12:01 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Very well written, and I agree with everything you say. So why are the American People voting for Democrats? Do they love high gas and oil prices, or are they just plain stupid? George Bush wants to drill in the ANWR and the Gulf region, yet the Democrats are blocking it. When the Democrats talk about wanting "change", I'm totally puzzled by their reference to a so called "Change". They keep blocking everything that can bring about change, and every year we get more and more dependent on foreign oil from the Middle East. I want "change", alright. The kind of "change" I'm looking for is to get these damn Democrats out of Congress!

At 8:56 PM, Blogger grantarchy said...

Democrats don't love high gas and oil prices. What you don't seem to get is that drilling for oil in ANWAR is deemed by most *environmentalists*, both Republican **and** Democrat as delaying the issue. Most *environmentalists* want *change* to occur now, not after we sap the world dry. When you say you don't understand why Democrats want "change", what you're really saying is you don't understand why they don't maintain the status quo a little while longer and continue to drill when we already know that it's keeping us dependent on big oil. Get real, man.

At 5:10 AM, Blogger RussWilcox said...

Grantarchy, in the *real* world, oil is the lifeblood until it is replaced by something (possibly a combination of hydrogen and nuclear) that is decades away at least.

At 8:51 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

On issues like this we need to find realistic compromises. I'm an environmentalist but I also acknowledge that we need oil....At the SAME time, we should be doing more to reduce dependance. Most annoying to me is that we did not force CAFE improvements for over 30 years...the whole time we were well aware of the oil dependance issue. In fact, actual mileage DECREASED during those 30 years. This is an embarrassment.


Post a Comment

<< Home