How to Get to $2 Gasoline Again
By Bill Moore
Posted: 22 Aug 2011
Recently Congresswoman Michele Bachmann (R. Minnesota 6th District) announced that when she is President, she'll see to it that the price of a gallon of gasoline will return to below $2 a gallon. Her audience cheered that remark, though Mrs. Bachmann did not explain exactly HOW she would make that happen.
In the interest to helping her answer that inevitable question if and when it comes up in a future Presidential debate next year, EV World would like to offer the following possible policy options ranging from the practical to the fantastic.
(1) Negotiate an agreement with China, India and other rapidly industrializing economies to stop building motor vehicles and switch back to bicycles. Much of the pressure on oil supplies is coming from burgeoning international markets, especially in China, which now has become the world's largest vehicle market, surpassing the United States. If she can convince Chinese leaders and the population to return to bicycles, that will help reduce demand and thereby increase available supplies, thus lowering the price.
(2) She can issue a Presidential finding ordering the immediate arrest and imprisonment at GITMO any commodity traders whose speculations on oil markets have been blamed for artificially driving up the price of a barrel of oil. With such speculators locked up and denied access to information on the market, we can reduce the bubble effect on petroleum prices, further lowering prices.
(3) Order all capped "stripper" wells to begin re-pumping regardless of how much oil is actually extractable, after all, some more conspiracy-minded folks among us are convinced there is plenty of oil under America and we've just been using up everyone else's oil first. Once that's gone, we'll again own the global market and can sell petroleum at any price we wish. The profits then will allow the Bachmann Administration to subsidize gasoline for Americans to under $2 per gallon.
(4) President Bachmann can order the appropriate Executive Branch agencies to open up every inch of American coastline to oil extraction and make sure oil companies are allowed to get at it for the lowest possible cost without being encumbered by costly safety regulations. If a well blows, so be it. Let coastal communities pick up the cost of the clean up. It could be good thing for building community as neighbors crawl shoulder to shoulder across oil-covered beaches with paper towels trying to soak up the ooze. Why should drivers in Minnesota have to pay for it?
(5) Since Mrs. Bachmann is a religious person, she may consider ordering a national day of fasting and prayer that the Almighty will intervene and cause all the once-productive, but largely dried up oil fields in America to refill abiogenically. Since God created the world only 6,000 years or so ago and we know oil doesn't come from dinosaurs or from the accumulation of hundreds of millions of years of organic matter on the sea floor that eventually turned into petroleum, He could see to it that all the stripped out fields in Texas and Oklahoma and California could begin to refill. It would be like the glory days of the 1930s all over again, except without the Great Depression.
(6) Even if the population of planet Earth is consuming its allotment of oil faster than it's being discovered and produced, that's not a problem for the Bachmann Administration who can direct NASA and her oil company contributors to immediately develop a fleet of space tankers to begin extracting the oceans of oil from Saturn's moon Titan, where it literally rains methane. Her "drill Titan, drill" policy would not only assure Americans plenty of cheap (though heavily subsidized oil) but it would create jobs and assure the nation's dominance in the "Next Frontier" of solar system resource extraction. If China and India continue to grow at their current pace, we know we'll need the resources of at least several planet Earths, and Titan's rich oil fields can help jump start that future. Plan B would be to authorize construction of a pipeline between Earth and Titan.
(7) Since Mrs. Bachmann would, as President, also be Commander and Chief, she could order the U.S. military to confiscate all of Persian Gulf oil fields from Iraq to Oman, declaring the region a U.S. protectorate similar to Guam. We already have a significant military presence in the Gulf, so why not just take what is rightfully ours under the Bachmann Doctrine of "might makes right." We've got God on our side and since the Almighty wants a Christian America to live an abundant life, we are entitled to all that oil. After all, what good have the Arabs done with it? Come on... an indoor ski slope?
(8) It long has been rumored that decades ago America developed a time machine that can send operatives into the past known as "time bandits" after the Terry Gilliam film of the same name. Once Mrs. Bachmann becomes President, she can order "Operation Peanut Gallery" to send brave, resourceful individuals into the past to influence events that will see to it that Jimmy Carter wins a second term, defeating Ronald Reagan, so that he can continue his efforts to make America less dependent on oil. It is hoped that those efforts will lead to dramatically improved fuel economy in the intervening decades, thus reducing pressure on oil production. Eventually oil prices are bound to rise -- especially since it will take until sometime around 2055 before the first space tanker-load of oil from Titan reaches Earth -- but by the time the Bachmann Administration takes office, prices at the pump will be under $2 a gallon, allowing her to fulfill her campaign pledge even before she makes it.
These are, of course, only suggestions of possible policy measures that Michele might wish to consider when the moderator of a future Presidential debate asks her how she plans to fulfill her August 18, 2011 pledge. I am sure she'd also be happy to hear from EV World readers on other possible policy options, as well.
There is one more policy she might wish to consider that seems painful obvious: if there is no market for oil, the price has to drop. And how do you create such a situation? You see to it that most cars and trucks, which consume something like 70% of all the oil America uses, simply don't need it anymore. They run on something else: biofuels, hydrogen, electricity.
Oh that's right, that's what the Obama Administration is trying to do.
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