Sunday, 1 May 2005

Cost of Gas

Many Americans seem to think they have a God-given right to cheap gasoline in perpetuity, but anyone who's paying attention knows that we're living on borrowed time and have to solve the global energy demand outside of fossil fuels within a generation or two at the most.

Mick Horan's blog, which I just discovered has a wonderful little graphic which should serve to remind us that our whining about $2.50 / gallon prices is just so much parochial unreality. My contrarian view that the sooner we get to $5 / gal the better, does not come without a personal grimace, but the longer our appetite is subsidized, the more we procrastinate a real solution.

Absolutely we should be attentive to the hardships which such prices put
on those of little means, and take actions to mitigate them, but the laughable spin Bush is putting on his plan for progressive indexing, ignores the patently unprogressive policies which are advanced at every opportunity to transfer wealth from the workers to the advantaged class in our society.

Fortunately there are more than a few Americans who are seeking long-term solutions, including those at the Apollo Alliance, who have modeled their call for energy independence after Kennedy's call for the vision to send a man to the moon.


-epm said...

I don't simply want the price of gasoline to go up, I want to see federal taxes in place that directly fund the development of alternative fuels and inter-city mass transit. Waiting until the price rises to $5.00 simply to line the pockets of oil executives and middle eastern despots will do nothing but cause civil unrest. While I'm concerned with the impact higher prices would have on those with limited means, I'm doubly concerned with the impact it would have on rural America; of which I'm a member.

But the real problem is that America need to kick the petroleum habit. And this will require more than high prices. It will require humility, sacrifice and selflessness, something in very short supply these days in America. In fact, America is like a drunk who won't make changes until he hits the bottom of the barrel and can no longer ignore the reflection in the mirror.

Walker said...

Indeed, directly funding alternatives with disincentives to consume is a missing piece here. Passively awaiting sub-optimal Malthusian solutions may cause worse than civil unrest.

Daniel said...

epm -

"In fact, America is like a drunk who won't make changes until he hits the bottom of the barrel and can no longer ignore the reflecction in the mirror."

Which is to that that America is composed of ordinary human beings.

Actually, I think the Apollo Alliance is a brilliant, wonderful idea, though I want to see it include nuclear technology among its solutions. I've always been fascinated with nuclear power, and I think it's going to be a vital part of any transformation of our society. Though fusion power would be even better ...