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Progressive Politics in Minnesota, the Nation, and the World

Bachmann: Less Rhetoric, More T. Boone Pickens

Category: Michele Bachmann
Posted: 07/09/08 18:19, Edited: 07/09/08 18:22

There is a lot of intense rhetoric about gas prices from Republicans. As usual, they take a complex problem.... offer a one sentence solution.... and beat it to death.

Are we really that naive?

Michele Bachmann is "focused like a laser beam" on reducing the pump price. Maybe she needs fewer "laser beams" and more reality checks. MinnPost's Ron Way cites the real bottom line here:

According to the Center for Economic and Policy Research (CEPR) in Washington, however, there's not enough oil in offshore areas to make much difference in world prices ? which drive most worldwide pump prices, including those in the United States.

Citing figures from the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), the center said that at full production ? which would be more than 20 years off, the EIA projects ? offshore reservoirs may yield 200,000 barrels of oil per day.

Now compare that assertion to this paragraph:

The CEPR said that had the U.S. improved automobile efficiency standards at a very modest rate of four-tenths of a gallon per year between 1985 and 2007, the United States would have saved a staggering 3.3 million barrels of oil a day, or more than 16 times the rate that may be obtained from offshore sources.

Rep. Bachmann never seems to have any numbers that back up her claim. She counts on everybody just assuming that more drilling means cost savings. It apparently doesn't matter that this is factually incorrect.

And, as I have tried to point out many times, the minimal additional production we can squeeze out of US sources would still have little effect on commodity crude oil prices. That price is based on a world market and we simply do not have enough supply sources (even if you include every place Rep. Bachmann would have us drill) to put a dent in the production available in the Middle East. Our imports will continue to increase year over year....because we do virtually nothing to conserve and reduce consumption.

It looks like the real voice of reason in this is T.Boone Pickens.... that's right, the billionaire investor. He has figured out the real solution and he plans to back up his idea with bucks.

Pickens: The Department of Energy came out with a study in April of '07 that said we could generate 20 percent of our electricity from wind. And the wind power is -- you know, it's clean, it's renewable. It's -- you know, it's everything you want. And it's a stable supply of energy.
It will be located in [the] central part of the United States, which will be the best from a safety standpoint to be located. You have a wind corridor that goes from Pampa, Texas, to the Canadian border. And it has -- the wind, it's unbelievable that we have not done more with wind. Look at Germany and Spain. They have developed their wind way beyond what we have, and they don't have as much wind as we do.

Check out his plan here.

Maybe Michele Bachmann should take a look, too.

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Gas Prices: Klobuchar Right -- Bachmann Drilling in Wrong Place

Category: Michele Bachmann
Posted: 06/23/08 16:17, Edited: 06/23/08 16:21

by Dave Mindeman

Sen. Amy Klobuchar called a news conference today and encouraged the DOJ to reign in the excessive speculation in the oil commodity market.

Finally...somebody is getting it right.

Michele Bachmann are you taking notes?

The continuous rise in the market price per barrel is not being driven by supply and demand at this time... although it is a normal factor in normal times. But right now, the price of oil is being driven by two things... oil speculators and the falling dollar.

Both of these problems can be linked to this administration. The dollar is falling like a rock on the world currency markets because of massive debt and an unstable economy, which makes the rest of the world nervous about our stability. Oil speculators are making markets based on an irrational oil bubble that they believe has no end -- and US policies are giving them no reason to doubt it.

Case in point, came today. The Saudis publicly stated that they would increase oil production available to them. That would be an increase in supply. The market reaction? Oil prices went up again.

Why? Because the speculators don't believe it is sincere or enough to make a difference.

We have been through this before, you know. This is the method that led to the Enron debacle several years ago. It is not basic supply and demand...it is speculators trying to corner specific markets and drive the price up artificially.

Sen. Klobuchar is on the right track.... Rep. Bachmann is still out in the left oil field.
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Michele Bachmann's Solution to Nuclear Waste: Ignore It

Category: Michele Bachmann
Posted: 06/19/08 16:29, Edited: 06/19/08 16:31

by Dave Mindeman

Before I start, I would like to declare from the outset that I am not a big fan of the use of nuclear power plants. However, as we move into dangerous territory on global warming, I have come to accept the fact that we need more action on this front and nuclear energy IS clean energy. We continue to struggle with the economics of ethanol depleting food sources and the constant drone of inaccurate but media savvy global deniers blocking political action in this arena.

Therefore, the movement toward nuclear power has become the least objectionable of a lot of not very good choices. Obama and McCain seem to both be leaning that way....although Obama has a more cautionary approach....which is good.

However, here is the problem I wanted to discuss....and it involves my favorite anti-earth candidate, Michele Bachmann. In her ridiculously named "No More Excuses Energy Bill", this provision is neatly tucked into the nuclear energy portion:


The Nuclear Regulatory Commission may not deny an application for a license, permit, or other authorization under the Atomic Energy Act of 1954 on the grounds that sufficient capacity does not exist, or will not become available on a timely basis, for disposal of spent nuclear fuel or high-level radioactive waste from the facility for which the license, permit, or other authorization is sought.

Emphasis mine.

The most troubling aspect of moving toward nuclear power in a big way is nuclear waste. We derive about 20% of our energy from nuclear plants that are on-line now. We still have not come up with a proper method of waste disposal. We do not have a repository.. we do not have standards for shipment of the waste.... we simply do not have a plan.

Rep. Bachmann is telling us that her solution to this very real problem is to not only ignore it, but make it ILLEGAL for the government to even consider it, as criteria for nuclear licenses.

Who elected this person?

It would seem that Ms. Bachmann must have high confidence that the "rapture" is coming very soon, because her idea of legislation certainly has little to do with looking to any future for this planet.

She has no regard in the least for earth's environmental concerns. Drill for oil everywhere.... contaminate the country with nuclear waste... energy efficient light bulbs are, to her, a joke...and global warming is "a hoax".

Somebody needs to tell Rep. Bachmann that problems do not go away by ignoring them. I'm hoping that that somebody is the voters of the 6th Congressional District.

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