Monday, August 25, 2008

Pickens Plan Is Not a Plan

Alright, I heard another silly plan by the T. Boone Pickens campaign. You may read about his energy plan here. His commercial spoke of his plan in stages. The first stage is for wind power. Now anybody that knows about wind power knows we are blowing millions of dollars into the wind. Pun is intended. Now as the stock guru noticed, there really is no plan, but let's pretend there is.

Apparently, Sweetwater's demise was saved by wind power. The plan says,

"When a large wind power facility was built outside of town, Sweetwater experienced a revival. New economic opportunity brought the town back to life and the population has grown back up to 12,000."

Whenever I hear a politician speak, Republican or Democrat, I get really nervous. Politicians are by definition against free markets. They must control the markets in order to maintain their positions of authority and power. So here we have an artificial market sustained only by politicians. Is this true job growth? Are we really going to say that wind energy created 2000 jobs in one town? I smell a rat.

Stage 2 is more troubling and deceiving. He appeals to Natural Gas. His site says,

"According to the California Energy Commission, critical greenhouse gas emissions from natural gas are 23% lower than diesel and 30% lower than gasoline."

I reject the premise. The premise is that burning oil and coal is destroying the planet. That is just a bunch of ____ (= nonsense).

"Natural gas vehicles (NGV) are already available and combine top performance with low emissions."

Yes, they are available. We owned one at the company I work for. The free-market has determined that Americans do not want this. Only by forcing the market to use this fuel will this work. Artificially creating a market is bad news.

"Natural gas is significantly less expensive than gasoline or diesel. In places like Utah and Oklahoma, prices are less than $1 a gallon. To see fueling stations and costs in your area, check out cngprices.com."

I must confess this man is clever. Of course it is cheaper. The demand for it is low. If we force the entire nation to use NG, do we honestly believe the price will stay low?

1) Oil companies have filling stations almost everywhere. How many NG stations are you aware of? So drilling for more oil is not going to solve our nations "crisis" but drilling for more NG is?

2) Regular gas is easily transported by trucks? Are we going to build pipelines to every gas station in the country for cars?

3) I do work for a NG distribution company. In the last 8 years the price of NG has tripled. I have watched many electric lines installed to replace NG engines for irrigation. Is adding demand going to solve this? Perhaps I am speaking ignorantly here, and this could be done. I would just like to know where this NG is coming from that would meet the nation's demand.

Natural gas is our country's second largest energy resource and a vital component of our energy supply. 98% of the natural gas used in the United States is from North America. But 70% of our oil is purchased from foreign nations.

This is an interesting stat. The thing about stats is that you can make them say anything you want. First of all, where else would it comes from? It is generally not economical to transport NG via ships. So of course most NG would be located here. Where else would it be?

Another problem with this is competition. If only a couple of companies produce something, they control the market. Competition is a good thing, even from overseas! This is a major premise that Boone must be challenged on. No one is doing it. This is not Conservatism. This is Isolationism.

Also, the largest importer of Petroluem into the U.S. is Canada. Of the top five largest importers to the U.S. is Canada and Mexico. Venezuela is also in the top five. So if we are going to use the term North America, we must remind ourselves this does not equal United States. Pickens is equivocating hoping no one will notice. That is deception, a typical politician trait.

So if we are going to be consistent with the definition of "foreign nations", we must see that almost 20% of NG is imported from foreign nations according to the Energy Information Administration (read here). Of course those foreign nations happen to border our own. This is causing a problem for Pickens' plan. One article is entitled "Demand for Natural Gas Brings Big Import Plans, and Objections" (read here). So Pickens will be importing or does he have another plan?

You must understand that the Left will criticize anything. If we got rid of oil today, they would go after whatever technology that comes along. The issue has never been about oil, it is about anti-capitalism cloaked with saving the planet language.

"The Pickens Plan is a bridge to the future — a blueprint to reduce foreign oil dependence by harnessing domestic energy alternatives, and buy us time to develop even greater new technologies."

Apparently, this is the plan. No mention of free-market in his plan what-so-ever. This should be troubling to all who fear the loss of freedom and the ever expanding government. The price of oil will drop tomorrow if we go and get it today. Don't fool yourself for the imaginary "new technology". Men like Pickens will promise the world in order to get elected. This is not a plan. This is simply the typical "politicians lining their pockets while grand standing" routine. Don't be fooled.

1 comment:

CitizensforGrowth said...

Sound bites and philosphical arguements are not going to change the way America handles its energy policy. It is going to take a a group of individuals committed to making a difference in how, what, where and why we purchase and transport our energy resources. Whether we continue to rely on foreign countries while developing new processes here in the United States, we must also consider how energey is moved and whether we have the infrastructural capabilities to handle it. Citizens For Growth www.citizensforgrowth.org is committed to doing just that. Take a look for yourself.