The NY Post’s editorial yesterday follows. Then I comment below the star line.Who's writing John McCain's campaign speeches - Michael Moore?
You'd think so, from the over-the-top rhetoric McCain used on Thursday night at Federal Hall, ripping into the nation's oil companies.
"I am very angry, frankly, at the oil companies," said the presumptive GOP presidential nominee. "Not only because of the obscene profits they've made, but their failure to invest in alternative energy to help us eliminate our dependence on foreign oil."
McCain also wants a "thorough and complete investigation of [oil] speculators."
Geez, where to begin?
OK, why should oil companies be investing in "alternative energy?" They're in the oil business, not the windmill business, for Pete's sake.
"Obscene profits"? To be sure, they're eye-popping in absolute dollars. But ExxonMobil's $40 billion in profit last year was based on $404 billion in sales - a fairly pedestrian 10 percent margin.
Industry-wide, profit margins average a relatively anemic 8.1 percent.
Speculators? They've likely played a role in the dizzying run-up in oil prices - but what's really driving the market is intense global demand and tight supply.
And McCain and his Greeniac buddies in Congress are in no small way responsible for that.
They've blocked exploration and drilling offshore and in any part of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge - likely repositories of some 100 billion barrels of oil and hundreds of trillions of cubic feet of natural gas.
Just the news that America's domestic energy sources were finally being tapped surely would discourage those "evil" speculators, and lower the price of crude. That, in turn, would help strengthen the weakened dollar - another reason for higher prices.
And it would create tens of thousands of American jobs in the process.
We understand that McCain relishes his reputation as a "maverick" Republican. But his demagoguery on the energy issue is truly disappointing.
How anyone who understands so clearly the necessity for resolutely fighting terrorism can be so obtuse on this equally critical issue is a true mystery.
The Post lets the oil companies off too easy on the matter of their failure to do much research. But I’ll leave that for another day.
With the research caveat excepted, I agree with everything in the Post’s editorial, especially its noting McCain and others in the Congress have helped hold back energy development in the U. S. by catering to lobbying organizations that claim to represent “the environment.”
The Post’s rhetorical question as to how anyone who understands so clearly the necessity for resolutely fighting terrorism can be so obtuse on this equally critical issue is a good one.
Here are a couple of other questions for McCain:
He’s known for months he’ll be the GOP presidential nominee, and he knows he needs to convince people he won’t be Bush 3.
So why hasn’t the McCain campaign developed a comprehensive energy plan that includes conservation, research incentives, federal government backing for “green energy projects” such as Cape Wind, a review of energy project regulations to determine if some do more harm than good, and yes, drilling in ANWR and off our coasts?
McCain should be going all over the country now selling the public on an energy plan he’ll campaign on through November and work to implement should he become President.
President Bush has never proposed and fought for a comprehensive energy plan designed to make us as less dependent on foreign sources and as clean energy consumers as possible.
Can you think of many better ways for McCain to convince people he’s not Bush 3 while at the same time serving the country’s best interests, then by advocating a comprehensive energy program of the type outlined here?