Who Needs Energy Independence?

Let free trade and the free market work.

When you gas up your car, do you think that you're doing something evil? After all, I'm told that burning gasoline helps "murder the Earth," not to mention fills the coffers of terrorists and despots.

So we must move away from oil. Al Gore says, "The future of human civilization is at stake."

But I need the gas. I need to drive. I need electricity to light my home. What can I do? Is there an alternative? There is, I'm told.

"What if we could use fuels that are not expensive, don't cause pollution and are abundantly available right here at home? We have such fuels," Gore says.

"In fact, we can start right now using solar power, wind power and geothermal power to make electricity for our homes and businesses."

In  10 years, he says, we can get all our electricity from these carbon-free sources.

Global warming hysteria is just one reason Gore and others push for alternative fuels. We're also told that America's goal should be energy independence. Today, we do buy oil from some very nasty people: dictators in Venezuela and the Middle East. What if they cut us off? That fear is one reason almost every president and presidential candidate—from Richard Nixon to Barack Obama—promised to end our "intolerable" reliance on oil imports.

When Nixon was president, we imported 25 percent of our oil. Since then, our "leaders" have wasted billions on subsidies for alternative energy. The result? Today we import nearly 70 percent of our oil.     

Terrible as that sounds, I say, "So what?" Interdependence is just fine! And journalist Robert Bryce, author of Gusher of Lies: The Dangerous Delusion of Energy Independence, agrees. He'll be my guest on Stossel tonight (Fox Business Network, 8 Eastern, and again Friday at 10).

Bryce points out that while Saudi Arabia and Iran are oil exporters, they are gasoline importers. "If even Saudi Arabia and Iran are energy interdependent, why wouldn't we be?" he says. "Energy interdependence" is just a way of saying "division of labor" and "comparative advantage."

Our biggest foreign oil suppliers are Canada and Mexico. Do they threaten us? Venezuela or Iran might, but they need the oil money. They would hurt themselves if they tried to cut us off.

Even if they did try, we'd still get their oil. All the world's oil ends up in the same bathtub. The dictator sells to someone who sells to someone who will then sell to us. Chasing energy "independence" is pointless. Free trade is better. It makes us richer and more secure.

Yet among those pushing for subsidies, along with Gore, is someone smart: oil billionaire T. Boone Pickens. He'll be a guest on my TV show, too.

You've probably seen Pickens in his television ads, saying: "I have a plan! We can unleash wind power to free up America's natural gas to power our big trucks and bus fleets. And save billions of American dollars."

But if we can save billions by using wind and natural gas, why do he, Vice President Gore, and today's Congress need our tax dollars? If there is a good alternative to oil, it won't need subsidies. The free market will simply make it appear. Let the entrepreneurs compete.

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  • Kroneborge||

    Oh so much fail here, where to start.

    1. Trade is only good when it works both ways. Our importation of oil is on of the primary drivers of the trade deficit (ie unequal trade). If you can't understand why that's bad, I think Warren Buffet actually made a nice cartoon that helps to illustrate that point a bit.

    2. High oil prices help keep those nasty regiems in power. There has been shown to be a direct correcltation between high oil prices, and repression in those countries. By reducing our demand for oil, we reduce the global price. This leaves less money for Iran etc to make mischief.

    3. And probably most important, being depedent on oil leaves our econonmy VERY exposed to flucating oil prices. Note the damage caused when oil spiked to $145 briefly in 2008. Because the era of cheap oil is coming to an end, it behooves us to take steps to protect our economy.

    Will the market eventually solve these problems, sure. But the market can be irrantional, and slow to react to problems in the future. Why not take proactive steps now, and reduce future pain?

  • robc||

    No such thing as a trade deficity.

    For example, during the 80s when we supposedly had trade deficits with Japan, they werent counting land in Hawaii and skyscrapers in NYC in the "exports" column, for some reason. In actuality, our trade was balanced with Japan. We stuck them with over-priced real estate. Suckers!

  • ||

    Don't forget overprices companies as well...it what is inevitable when one is used to having a monopoly.

  • robc||

    BTW, if I own a trucking company (I dont), how will buying oil pumped out of the ground in the US vs Venezuela make a difference with fluctuating oil prices?

    Whether it is Chavez or OPEC or Exxon setting the price, a fluctuation will still affect my bottom line the same.

  • Kroneborge||

    Because oil is traded on a global market. Thus demand that is met from US, Mexico, or Canada, still props up global prices.

  • Mikey||

    And the supply in all of those places drives the price down. Don't forget the supply side Krone.

  • Kroneborge||

    Oh, I most certainly do not. And since supply is probably already peaking, it behooves us even more to reduce demand.

  • netflicks||

    Will the market eventually solve these problems, sure.

    The markets would have solved it long ago if government wasn't stopping it.

    It's not because there's no money to be made by producing more oil. It's because government impedes or stops it.

  • ||

    Will the market eventually solve these problems, sure.

    The markets would have solved it long ago if government wasn't stopping it.

    It's not because there's no money to be made by producing more oil. It's because government impedes or stops it.

    There's fail but it's in your reply not the OP.

  • Tony||

    The markets would have solved it long ago if government wasn't stopping it.

    What an original contribution. So the market would somehow have magically done away with fossil-fuel based energy with plenty of the stuff left in the ground and no government telling them they can't dump their waste into the atmosphere? How exactly would that have worked?

    "Government causes all bad things" doesn't pass as an argument when you don't even bother to explain how.

  • ||

    We've plenty of energy available. We don't use it because of government policy.

    Why does it even need 'explaining' it's simple reality and everyone knows. Including you. You needn't feign ignorance when you don't need to, you have enough of the real thing.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Tony,

    What an original contribution. So the market would somehow have magically done away with fossil-fuel based energy with plenty of the stuff left in the ground and no government telling them they can't dump their waste into the atmosphere?

    What's with this "their" business, Kimosabe? What waste are you alluding at?

  • Chad||

    CO2, SOx, NOx, mercury and other heavy metals, ozone, PM10 and PM2.5 particulates....you know, the gunk that kills more Americans every few months than terrorists have ever killed?

  • Mango Punch||

    I haven't read stossel's piece yet, but energy dependency does have geopolitical implications (ie western europe needing russian gas).

    Note the damage caused when oil spiked to $145 briefly in 2008.

    There was a lot more going on causing damage than oil spiking.

  • netflicks trial||

    What an original contribution. So the market would somehow have magically done away with fossil-fuel based energy with plenty of the stuff left in the ground and no government telling them they can't dump their waste into the atmosphere? How exactly would that have worked?

  • Old Mexican||

    1. Trade is only good when it works both ways.

    "Trade" is always both ways, otherwise it would be called "theft". You're equivocating.

    Our importation of oil is on of the primary drivers of the trade deficit ([i.e.] unequal trade). If you can't understand why that's bad, I think Warren Buffet actually made a nice cartoon that helps to illustrate that point a bit.

    If you worry about "unequal" trade, then worry about the poor saps in Canada, Mexico and the Middle East, since they have been trading their tangible goods for worthless scraps of inked cotton.

    2. High oil prices help keep those nasty regiems in power.

    Indeed - we must do something about that nasty regime in Canada . . .

    There has been shown to be a direct [correlation] between high oil prices, and repression in those countries.

    It would be interesting to see how that correlation worked when oil was as low as $32.00 a barrel - see if at least for a few months, those regimes were pussycats.

    By reducing our demand for oil, we reduce the global price. This leaves less money for Iran etc to make mischief.

    Yep - well, at least it will make the oil cheaper for China. That will teach those bastards who they are dealing with!*

    [* Hint: A bunch of economic illiterate fools, that's who!]

    3. And probably most important, being depedent on oil leaves our econonmy VERY exposed to [fluctuating] oil prices.

    Yes, price fluctuation is bad. We can't have that! We should also ween ourselves from tomato dependancy, because the price of those damned tomatoes fluctuates as well! Oh, and avocados - yeah, that will teach them.

    Note the damage caused when oil spiked to $145 briefly in 2008. Because the era of cheap oil is coming to an end, it behooves us to take steps to protect our economy.

    . . . By drivign it further into the ground.


    Will the market eventually solve these problems, sure. But the market can be irrantional,

    God forbid we find ourselves with an irrantional market.

    The market is no more irrational than evolution (another complex system). The results come spontaneously from myriads of RATIONAL exchanges between individuals. You have no grasp at all of the subject you are talking about.

  • Mango Punch||

    +1

  • Tony||

    OM,

    The entire reason we're supposed to trust in markets is because they're allegedly composed of rationally self-interested actors. This is of course a heaping pile of horseshit. But even if all exchanges were rational there still would be no accounting for externalities. When has the market ever solved a problem like pollution on its own?

    The comparison to evolution is interesting. I don't feel you have a grasp of what you're talking about. If the market worked like evolution then we should immediately discard it as a horrible idea. Evolution is a ruthless culling process wherein the vast majority of agents die off. It is not efficient or rational.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Tony,

    The entire reason we're supposed to trust in markets is because they're allegedly composed of rationally self-interested actors. This is of course a heaping pile of horseshit.

    Really? Then people are NOT rational self-interested parties?

    But even if all exchanges were rational there still would be no accounting for externalities.

    That's because the concept of "externality" is an intellectually dishonest construct - it can become "anything I happen not to like". How can one account for THAT?

    When has the market ever solved a problem like pollution on its own?

    Hundreds of times - except on those places where private property rights are not enforced, like in those environmental paradises of the ex-Communist block.

    The comparison to evolution is interesting. I don't feel you have a grasp of what you're talking about.

    Ooooh - I am so anxious in anticipation to see your explanation to this assertion!


    If the market worked like evolution then we should immediately discard it as a horrible idea.

    Uh . . . yeah. Which is like saying that evolution would discard itself as a bad idea . . . nice logic there Aristotle.

    A spontaneous, complex system that looks at itself and "decides" to discard itself as a "bad idea". Huh.

    Evolution is a ruthless culling process wherein the vast majority of agents die off.

    Tony, that's Natural Selection you're talking about, which happens to be the mechanism of evolution. Evolution is a complex and spontaneous system with outcomes detremined by a myriad of interactions between organisms and their environment. The Market, in the same way, is the result of myriads of interactions between actors. The mechanism that drives the market is unfulfilled needs and wants, rational expectations and purposeful action.


    It is not efficient or rational.

    Evolution is certainly NOT rational (albeit it DOES follow the laws of physics), but you cannot call it "inefficient" - compared to what? Creationism?

  • Old Mexican||

    Correction: Evolution in itself is not rational in that it does not come from rational decision, but it is totally defined by the laws of physics, so the outcomes will not be non-natural.

    In the same way, the market is bound by the rational decisions of the individuals making the iteractions, so the results cannot be non-rational. That's the comparison between the two complex systems.

  • ||

    The entire reason we're supposed to trust in markets is because they're allegedly composed of rationally self-interested actors.

    Wrong.

    That's the entire straw man disney economists use to demonize classicals and Austrians. It's never been what they actually say.

    The truth is as OM alluded.

    Markets are evolutionary because they are a result of evolution as we are a result of evolution as our behavior is.

    Markets don't depend on rational choice of all actors, in any way whatsoever. Just as evolution doesn't depend on all mutations being a survival or mating advantage. They aren't. Yet evolution always advances.

    If you could understand evolution you would already understand economics.

  • Tony||

    Someone who wrote the words:

    Yet evolution always advances.

    shouldn't lecture anyone about not understanding evolution.

  • Soonerliberty||

    Then what does evolution do? Devolve? How are you deciding what is advancement in evolution or not? Or are you about to go off on some liberal tangent about how we kill off animals every day with our earth-killing practices, all caused, naturally, by the free market? The one who is arrogant enough to assume he knows what progress in evolution or the market is . . . actually, you do prove the point: Your existence proves we as a species never evolve intellectually.

  • Tony||

    There is no such thing as "progress" in evolution. It is a blind process with no concern about making life more "advanced." Species responding to selective pressure and adapting over time to new environments has nothing to do with an arrow of progress. The only constant in evolution is death. The vast majority of individuals and species die off. If you want to analogize the market to that, be my guest. You'd have no choice then but to believe that such an inefficient system requires major controls.

  • ||

    There is no such thing as "progress" in evolution.

    Don't be more of an ass than need be.

    Of course there's progress in evolution. That's why 'progressives' hate evolution. In reality and in markets. Gotta save the snail darters and the buggy whip makers! It's sad when snail darters die and buggy whip makers have to find other jobs.

    Progressives are all about preserving the failed past (or their romanticized version of it) and keeping it safe from the future.

    If you want to analogize the market to that, be my guest.

    It's not an analogy. Free markets are people acting freely. We are the result of evolution. That's why they perform best. Free markets are natural.

    Progressives would breed poodles because they like the looks, (how orderly is a herd of poodles!) and then are always surprised when they can't compete with mutts in the real world.

    You'd have no choice then but to believe that such an inefficient system requires major controls.

    Wrong. Because people can get jobs making tires instead of buggy whips. People needn't die because of market adaptation.

    There are two sorts of crises. Natural ones, which are rare and small scale (Katrina, Haiti), and ones caused by government intervention, which are ubiquitous and large scale (Depression, WW1, WW2, the current Depression progressives are creating, etc).

    I'm a utilitarian. I believe in the greatest good for the greatest number. History is abundantly clear that freedom accomplishes this best.

  • netflicks movies||

    The market is no more irrational than evolution (another complex system). The results come spontaneously from myriads of RATIONAL exchanges between individuals. You have no grasp at all of the subject you are talking about.

  • ||

    Stop subsidizing the fossil fuel companies directly as well as indirectly.
    Tell them they're on their own.
    They want US military intervention, then they have to pay for it.
    Corporations don't pay any taxes, so fuck them.

  • Eric||

    "There has been shown to be a direct [correlation] between high oil prices, and repression in those countries."

    You have to cite a source or provide a link when you make a claim like that.

  • ||

    "Why not take proactive steps now, and reduce future pain?"
    Because the people in government are too stupid to do it right.

  • Kroneborge||

    Oh, one more note about subsidies, it's not like the oil and gas industry hasn't been subsidized for years. Plus they still get billions in subsidies. So it's not exactly like the playing field has been level

  • Tman||

    Comment fail!

    1.) Trade by its very definition works both ways. Yes, sometimes people/nations make "bad" or "unequal" trades but you can't have trade without give and take. If it is cheaper to trade for oil than it is to produce it here then how is that bad?

    2.) Canada and Mexico are our two biggest trade partners for foreign oil. I suppose that they have nasty regimes too? We barely get any oil from Iran, and the reality is that if we chose not to import from Saudi Arabia, someone else would. The argument that we "support" these regimes is ludicrous.

    3.) We as a nation are most definitely dependent on oil and gas prices do indeed play a major role in our economy, but so is the pretty much the rest of the world. Using government intervention to fix this will most certainly end up making things worse.

  • Kroneborge||

    except when there is a trade deficit, then by it's very definition trade isn't working both ways.

    The deficit is because we are buying MUCH more than we are selling. Think of it this way, if as a business your costs are always much higher than your sales, how long can that last? That's the same thing happening with trade.

    Compartive advantage, and free trade etc, ONLY work when you are actually trading, not one country doing most of the buying and the other doing most of the selling.

    2. Note my comment about global oil prices. buying oil from Mexico or Canada or even from the US STILL supports the global oil price.

    Yes I know the idea that decisions we make have consequnces is ludicrous, lol.

    3. Actually there are a number of solutions like a net zero gas/carbon tax that could have a substainal benefit, without the government having to micro manage the economy.

  • Mango Punch||

    US Imports - US Exports = Current Account Balance
    Capital Inflows - Capital Outflows = Capital Account Balance
    Current Account Balance + Capital Account Balance = $0

    If the US is a long term net importer than the demand for foriegn currency will increase, the dollar will decrease in value until US goods and services become cheap enough and trade will balance.

  • Kroneborge||

    Except of course for the fact that the dollar (and foreign currencies) are manipulated. The biggest culprit being the Chinese RMB of course, but other nations do so as well.

    Also, usually the bigger factor for currencies is the interest rate, which fuels the carry trade.

  • Mango Punch||

    And China buys US Treasuries! so the equation still holds.

    Yes, the China RMB is being manipulated, and some people do anticipate its a bubble that will burst (along with chinese housing and the entire country). Basically, your example isn't an argument against free trade but against government meddling in trade.

    Also, usually the bigger factor for currencies is the interest rate, which fuels the carry trade.

    Do you even know what a carry-trade is?? it's when you borrow short and lend long. There's nothing inherently wrong with that.

  • Chad||

    As long as the difference in interests rates is set by the market, and you are using your own reserves as collateral, and borrowing from and lending to the market.

    Or you could have the current situation, where the rates have nothing to do with fundamentals, and a few vampire squids are getting rich because they can borrow nearly unlimited short-term funds from their rich uncle for practically nothing, and then turn around and lend it back to him long and expensive.

    The vampire squids' primary "talent" that justifies their pay is their direct bloodlink connections to the Treasury.

  • ||

    Hmm, what entity gave them the power to be parasites, I wonder? Any posters on this board usually on their knees felating said entity on a regular basis?

    Doesn't the moron Chony argument go something like "You don't like the Fed? So you are opposed to roads and fire departments?!"

    Oh, I forgot the "equation". Government bad, Chad government divine.

  • netflix||

    Canada and Mexico are our two biggest trade partners for foreign oil. I suppose that they have nasty regimes too? We barely get any oil from Iran, and the reality is that if we chose not to import from Saudi Arabia, someone else would. The argument that we "support" these regimes is ludicrous.

  • Tman||

    except when there is a trade deficit, then by it's very definition trade isn't working both ways.

    Sure it is. It may not be working to one person/nations advantage, but that doesn't mean it's not working. There are problems with have a net surplus in trade as well, see: China.

    Compartive advantage, and free trade etc, ONLY work when you are actually trading, not one country doing most of the buying and the other doing most of the selling.

    Says who? We here in the US like to buy cheap T-shirts at Walmart for $10. China can make T-shirts that Walmart can sell for $10. On the one hand, we get cheap t-shirts, and on the other China gets to sell them. If we stopped buying cheap t-shirts from China they couldn't continue to expand their economy, and if we didn't continue to get cheap merchandise from China for things we need we would have the same problem. You seem obsessed with the idea that the US needs to be the one making the $10 t-shirt. That's ridiculous.

    2. Note my comment about global oil prices. buying oil from Mexico or Canada or even from the US STILL supports the global oil price.

    And so what, exactly, does this have to do with supporting "evil regimes"? Again, if the US stopped buying oil tomorrow from overseas (which is impossible, but for the sake of argument) there would be other buyers like China and India who would step in and supply the displaced demand. The consequences you warn of are not what you think they would be.

    Actually there are a number of solutions like a net zero gas/carbon tax that could have a substainal benefit, without the government having to micro manage the economy

    So a net zero gas/carbon tax isn't micro managing the economy? That's hilarious.

  • Kroneborge||

    Agreed, there would be a problem is there was a large surplus as well. Note that I am not advocating for a surplus, OR deficit. I'm adovcating for trade IE, the trade or deficit should be minimal.

    This means that what the country is buying or selling is roughly equal.

    2. yes there is no problem with us buying cheap t-shirts, or any other product. But there is a problem when we aren't selling an equal amount. My problem isn't with the size of trade, it's with the fact that we aren't exporting enough to make up for the importing.

    you see, we have to make SOMETHIGN to trade, we can't always just do all the buying. It's like a company just always buying materials, buy never selling any product. It won't work.

    3. If the US reduced it's demand for oil, then the price of oil would drop. Will China and India eventually make up the difference? it's certainly possible. But in the meantime we would be reducing funds to those regiems. More important, we would be reducing the effects on our economy of the increasing oil prices when/if China India etc push up demand.

    For example, I believe China now is selling more cars a year than the US, what do you think that will do to the price of oil?

    So let's be clear on the argument I'm making.

    By reducing US demand, we are lowering total global demand by more than what it would have been than if we didn't. Furthermore, we are reducing the effects of high oil prices on our economy from increasing demand from other countires AND decreasing supply.

    Finally, no a net zero gas tax is NOT micro managing, any more than an income tax is. Will it have an effect on the economy sure. But micro managing would be if government went in and tried to pick winners and loosers through regulation.

  • Tman||

    This means that what the country is buying or selling is roughly equal.

    This both unrealistic and undesirable. You can't "balance" trade without massive government intervention that would most assuredly produce unintended consequences that would be worse than our current deficits.

    you see, we have to make SOMETHIGN to trade, we can't always just do all the buying. It's like a company just always buying materials, buy never selling any product. It won't work.

    We do sell stuff, just not t-shirts. Guess what the number 1 computer operating system in the world is? American made. How about Boeing? How about Pharmaceuticals? The idea that we don't produce anything is entirely incorrect.

    3.) Again, we get most of our oil from Canada and Mexico. Reducing our imports from those countries will have little to zero effect on Iran or Saudi Arabia. If anything, it would lower the global price for oil which again would have a negligible effect on the economies of Saudi Arabia and Iran. They would still make money hand over fist.

    The funniest part of your argument is that you propose raising the cost of gas in the US to somehow "reduce our dependence" on oil so that we would be less affected by the change in oil prices on our economy.

    Why don't you just ban cars and be done with it? Either way you are arguing that we must destroy our economy to save it.

  • Chad||

    I wouldn't bet on Mexico staying #3 for long. Their production is falling like a rock, and Venezuala and Nigeria are closing in.

    No, we don't need to "destroy our economy". We just need one that looks more like Japan or Europe, where people do just fine despite much higher gasoline costs.

  • Soonerliberty||

    Doing just fine is paying outrageously high prices for food, transport, travel, and just about anything, not even to mention the 50% taxes? Try living here in Europe, then you might change such an absurd statement based on nothing more than propaganda and myth.

  • mr simple||

    No, we don't need to "destroy our economy". We just need one that looks more like Japan or Europe
    That's hilarious performance art, and I'm not usually into that kind of thing. I don't know which of you guys is playing "Chad", but bravo. The intellectual dishonesty and constant contradiction is brilliant.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Kroneborge,

    Except when there is a trade deficit, then by it's very definition trade isn't working both ways.

    You're equivocating - "trade" means "exchange" as in "there are two guys that make an arrangement to give each other what the other wants". Otherwise it is NOT trade.

    The deficit is because we are buying MUCH more than we are selling.

    haven't you figured it out? "We" are not buying or selling anything [what's with this "we" business, Kimosabe?]. Individuals trade with other individuals - the fact that one set of individuals live inside a politically defned boundary does not mean the boundary is the one that trades.

    And people ARE selling something for what they buy - they sell the Chinese worthless scraps of inked cotton, which they find valuable for some reason.

    Think of it this way, if as a business your costs are always much higher than your sales, how long can that last?

    Kroneborge, this is economics we're talking about, not finances. Trade is ALWAYS both ways. The problem you are pointing out to is totally different - it has to do with monetary policy, but not with trade.

    Compartive advantage, and free trade etc, ONLY work when you are actually trading, not one country doing most of the buying and the other doing most of the selling.

    Countries do not buy or sell - only INDIVIDUALS buy or sell. You are looking at the wrong culprit.

    3. Actually there are a number of solutions like a net zero gas/carbon tax that could have a substainal benefit, without the government having to micro manage the economy.

    And we come to the geist of the conversation! Yet another attempt at justifying statism - why, I never saw that one coming!

  • ||

    "Not like X hasn't been subsidized for years" is an unacceptable (but comically sad) defense of subsidizing Y. This isn’t fifth grade recess.

  • Kroneborge||

    If that was the ONLY reason, you might be right. Instead it's just to point out that there NEVER has been a free. Thus asking newer technologies to compete on an uneven playing field is not exactly fair. Worse, oil and gas etc, have all those nasty exteranlities that are not reflected in the price, resulting in market distortions.

  • TP||

    So, how about ending the subsidies to X and Y?

  • Kroneborge||

    I wouldn't be against that.

  • John Tagliaferro||

    How about we just make a declairation of energy independance and be done with it.

  • ||

    Mission Accomplished™

  • ||

    We have more oil than we need right here in the U.S., the problem is that we are not allowed to touch it, because it might change the migration pattern of some gnat that eaten by some bird that lives in some tree that makes up some forest and we're just evil for wanting to destroy all of that.

  • John Tagliaferro||

    Kroneborge, I refuse to believe it is a bad idea to purchase something I need from someone who has it while others (and maybe them) purchase things from me that they need.

    I would like to see our environazis neutralized so we can tap into the energy we have right here in North America. Converting it to private property would be a good first step.

  • brotherben||

    You are talking about the millions of acres of public land out west? With all that marketable timber for all the sawmills that can't get logs?

  • Kroneborge||

    The problem is we aren't selling anything to them, or at least no where near as much as we are buying.

    I'm not saying don't trade. I'm saying that we have to have a balance in that trade.

    Look up Ricardo's work again, on compartive advantage and look at the conditions for it to work. See how we are SO failing at that right now.

  • Eric||

    "The problem is we aren't selling anything to them, or at least no where near as much as we are buying."

    That is the real problem. Why is it that American goods can't compete on the global market?

  • Kroneborge||

    With some countries (particuarlly China) it has to do with exchange rates.

    Also, the US has unequal trade deals with a lot of countries.

    Part of it is just wage disparities of course.

    Also, we allow companies to import goods without being subject to the same environemental regulations, thus encouraging a race to the bottom.

    Finally, if you take out oil, then our trade problems aren't nearly as bad.

  • Eric||

    Because certain groups collude to set prices on labor; they use the power of the US government to protect and support their practices. I think this is the source of the race to the bottom you refer to.

  • Chad||

    Environmental standards make a big difference as well. It's much easier to make a buck when you don't have to pay to dispose of toxic waste, but can just dump it into the nearest river.

  • Jimmy 'Crack' Corn||

    Which could translate into "don't go on a swimming vacation in Mexico".

  • John Tagliaferro||

    You are talking about the millions of acres of public land out west? With all that marketable timber for all the sawmills that can't get logs?

    That too. I was talking about all that "public" land with oil and coal underneath it. Might need a constitutional amendment to sell continental shelf property, but so be it.

  • brotherben||

    It's almost overwhelming to think of all the jobs that would be (re)created in the northwest if timber companies and other people were allowed to buy a few million acres of old-growth wilderness. Jebus, talk about kickstarting the economy.

  • Mango Punch||

    Because there's high demand for timber right now?

  • Jimmy 'Crack' Corn||

    Actually, not that many jobs would be created in the Northwest. Currently they just take the logs and ship them to Japan. Cut down more trees, and all that will happen is more logs will be shipped to Japan.

  • freeforall232||

    "High oil prices help keep those nasty regiems in power. There has been shown to be a direct correcltation between high oil prices, and repression in those countries."

    Which is EXACTLY why the government has no business involving itself in the market.

  • Anomalous||

    Billionaires seeking rent
    Shouldn't get a single cent

  • Kroneborge||

    I'm not sure I follow your logic. How is it not better to say lower the price of oil to help bring freedom to there countries, than say invade Iraq etc?

    Or do you really believe that we won't do anything at all, lol

  • Kroneborge||

    If anyone is really interested in learning more about trade, I highly recommend the following book
    http://www.amazon.com/Beyond-G.....0807047090

    It's a bit technical in places (even with a degree in economics, lol) but still highly recommended.

  • Mango Punch||

    Really???????

  • ||

    Advocating energy independence is only a bad thing if it is used to promote government subsidies not if it is used to promote deregulation of domestic production. Talk to Western Europe about its relationship with Russia or Japan about its domestic food production if you think that a nation can be casual about the sources of its critical needs.

  • Mango Punch||

    +1

  • ||

    Shorter Kroneborge: lol!

  • ||

    I'm okay with a vague goal of energy independence, particularly if it means developing awesome new energy technologies, like fusion or something like that. But that's only because I want Earth to look cool and sophisticated when aliens finally come to check out all the radio noise.

  • ||

    They'll just read the entire internet when they get here and nuke us from orbit.

    To be sure.

  • Little Green Man||

    Ha! I laugh at your lack of technology with these antique fusion reactors. Try traveling through worm holes you simian turds!

  • more in oil than oil||

    "Today, we do buy oil from some very nasty people: dictators in Venezuela and the Middle East. What if they cut us off?" It is not a question of them cutting us off and it is not a matter of trade deficit or that all the oil ends up in one vat. The fact is that they engage in intolerable behavior and we are funding the damage. We need to be cutting them off with energy independence.

  • ||

    The free market cannot respond to long-term environmental degradation before our planet is damaged beyond repair. The only way to ensure that humanity has the technology needed to avoid widespread ecological disasters is for the governments of wealthy nations to invest in the development of clean, sustainable energy sources. The free market will eventually create such energy sources, but it won't do so in time without assisstance.

  • Mango Punch||

    We've never had technological advancement before??

    It is true that societies in the past have degraded their resources to the point that they arguably 'collpsed'. However, considering that the US has massive amounts of oil and especially natural gas, and considering that we are still finding more oil and nat gas, and considering that we were "supposed" to run out of oil 10 years ago, your arguent seems weak and ill-informed (or highly informed with bad information).

  • Naga Sadow||

    Dude. Oil will be obsolete as a fuel source long before we "run out". Hell, wells are considered "tapped out" with over half their reserves still in the ground. It's cheaper to simply move on than drain it dry.

  • Suki||

    Quit encouraging them to mine Pandora for the Unobtainium!

  • TP||

    That argument works both ways. Prudhoe Bay was "supposed" to fill our energy needs for the next 50 years or something like that. And when they started drilling they found out it was all sludge, with just a little free-flowing on top. When oil was trading at $120/barrel, it was cost effective to pump steam into the wells to loosen the oil, now it is not.

  • ||

    Just drilling a well and pumping out the oil, i.e. primary recovery, typically yields ~30% of a well's potential. Water flooding can yield another 10% or so. Secondary or enhanced recovery techniques, e.g. fracturing, steaming (including huff-and-puff), the use of surfactants, etc., can increase the yield to above 95%. The use of secondary techniques are particularly helpful in production from heavy oil wells in places such as Alberta and Sumatra.

    Those that argue that the world is running out of oil rarely account for the fact that wells that no longer produce oil are reopened as the price of oil increases making certain secondary recovery technologies economically viable.

  • Steven||

    The arguement of oil running out is moot. The problem isn't so much that oil is running out, it's that demand will outstrip supply. Even the boys at Exxon know that oil's end is near, they've made no investment into the oil infastructure of the US since 1975! They'll ride the gravy train of oil profit while other suckers try to drill.

  • Chad||

    The oil in ANWR is enough to last the world about 6 months. Let's say we allow drilling their immediately. I would then ask you what your plan would be come July, because you just blew your one trick pony.

    "Drill baby drill" buys us a year at most. It is not a long term, or short term, solution to anything. It may or may not be worth the costs, but that is another matter entirely.

  • Tony||

    The problem isn't running out of oil. It's what burning the oil is doing to the environment.

    Markets never work on their own without direction from government. They just don't, and it doesn't make sense to pretend they do. The environment is more important than oil company profits and more important than appeasing the free market gods (who seem only to want more profits for oil companies).

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Tony,

    The problem isn't running out of oil. It's what burning the oil is doing to the environment.

    Cue the violin music here . . .

    Markets never work on their own without direction from government.

    Where does government obtain the information that supposedly the market does not get to work properly? You haven't been able to address this point, Tony, because you stupidly assume that bureaucrats are somehow cleverer than you or me or everybody else.

    They just don't,

    No proof, just an ex cathedra affirmation.

    and it doesn't make sense to pretend they do.

    Yeah, people go to the market to pretend it works. How stupid they all are!

    The environment is more important than oil company profits and more important than appeasing the free market gods (who seem only to want more profits for oil companies).

    Those polar bears don't fall from the sky all by themselves, you know!

  • Ben||

    Runaway child.

  • ||

    Markets never work on their own without direction from government.

    Now you've moved into crazyville.

    Markets existed before governments.

    Markets work everywhere government doesn't direct. It's everywhere government gets involved that things get hosed up.

    Show me 'failed' market that didn't have government 'direction'.

  • Tony||

    Well governments exist pretty much everywhere and are part of the environment in which markets have to operate. What use is there in talking about a fantasy world that will never exist?

  • ||

    Free markets exist all over the world, partially or totally, everywhere governments leave them alone through disinterest (not enough blood to attract the parasite) or inability (brand new or failed or failing governments).

    It's hardly a fantasy.

  • Steven||

    Wow, Singapore is such a faliure of government because that free market really wiped out the malaria and got them going! Fantasy world is believing in the free market cure all, the same as those who believe in the government cure all. The truth is always in the middle of those two stories.

  • ||

    The environment is more important than oil company profits and more important than appeasing the free market gods

    No saved environment ever fed a hungry child. Appeasing the gods, however, is a well-known way of increasing the harvest.

  • Soonerliberty||

    "Markets never work on their own without direction from the government."

    History of the USSR, get ya some!

  • Kroneborge||

    Yes we have lots of domestic oil still, that's not the question. The questions is how cheap is it.

    Oil at $200 a barrel, will not work the way our economy is currently strucutred (note I do believe it will be there, probably within 10 years)

  • Mango Punch||

    $200 oil will drive inovation of other energy sources and technology. Of course our economy isn't currently structured for $200 oil, that's the whole point economies adapt and change.

  • Kroneborge||

    yes they do, but it takes years to do so. However oil prices can and probably will rise in a rapid manner (like they did in 2008).

    Thus I'm in favor of sending the economy the proper signials early, so people can prepare and adapt.

  • Paper Trumpet||

    "Thus I'm in favor of sending the economy the proper signials early, so people can prepare and adapt."

    And there's the crux. The Authoritarian Instict

    You believe you know the way forward and want to see others molded to your vision. That is why you hate "the market." The market is the people's liberty, freedom to make choices for themselves.

    But the jokes on you, because you are not as powerful as you imagine. You simply parrot themes from the "anointed."

  • Tony||

    Everyone knows the way forward, except the market.

  • Chad||

    No, I don't hate the market. I just hate stupidity, and the market is full of it. Why you think allowing corporations to make most of the major capital allocation decisions is beyond me, when a typical corporation considers the "long term" to be a five-year plan, and no one outside the R&D department even thinks a thought about the next decade (and they only think about it, but can't act until it is within five years).

    Markets are good at sorting out details like WHICH solar technology should win, under what circumstances. IT is not good at long-term and more fundamental decisions, which outside the scope of the types of decisions corporations make.

  • Soonerliberty||

    Guess that beats 4-year election cycles, because politicians are oh so great planners . . . give our Great Leap Forward! I'm waiting . . .

  • Jimmy 'Crack' Corn||

    I think the market will adapt at an incredible pace. I remember the '70s oil embargo. Gasoline prices doubled in a week. The market adapted, and fast.

  • Naga Sadow||

    Kroneberg . . . you're an idiot. I have an item I wish to buy. The other guy has an item he wishes to sell. Trade is good for all parties. Why would we trade if both parties didn't think they were getting more out of the exchange.

    John T,

    I like the idea of using up other countries oil before ours.

  • ||

    I have an item I wish to buy. The other guy has an item he wishes to sell. Trade is good for all parties.

    reductio ad idiocracy

  • Kroneborge||

    Naga please read my fucking posts

    If you have an item you wish to sell, and I have an item I wish to sell, and we trade, that is good.

    If you just sell shit to me, and I never sell anything to do, how the fuck is that trade?

    More important, how long do you think that can go on. Will you keep selling me shit forever, if I never give you anything in return?

    I suggest you read the posts, before you start with the name calling.

  • Jordan||

    If you just sell shit to me, and I never sell anything to do, how the fuck is that trade?

    When you go to the store, do you just buy random things, regardless of the value they provide you? It's trade because I get something of value to me (dollars) in exchange for giving you something that you value.

  • Kroneborge||

    Yes, but that's because earlier you had already worked (sold your labor) to get the dollars to trade.

    The equation was balanced.

    Unless of course you put it on credit, which is esentially what the US is doing.

  • ||

    If you just sell shit to me, and I never sell anything to do, how the fuck is that trade?

    I think you're really confused. I bought something with money which I got by selling something. That's what currency is dear. It's not required that I trade steel for oil. I can trade steel for money then money for oil.

    The only real trade deficit can come from borrowing. Even then I am selling the expectation of future generation of wealth.

  • Kroneborge||

    And borrowing is exactly what our trade deficit is financed by. That and sale of US assets.

  • Chad||

    We've already used most of ours, Naga. We peaked 40 years ago.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Kroneborge,

    Except when there is a trade deficit, then by it's very definition trade isn't working both ways.

    You're equivocating - "trade" means "exchange" as in "there are two guys that make an arrangement to give each other what the other wants". Otherwise it is NOT trade.

    The deficit is because we are buying MUCH more than we are selling.

    haven't you figured it out? "We" are not buying or selling anything [what's with this "we" business, Kimosabe?]. Individuals trade with other individuals - the fact that one set of individuals live inside a politically defned boundary does not mean the boundary is the one that trades.

    And people ARE selling something for what they buy - they sell the Chinese worthless scraps of inked cotton, which they find valuable for some reason.

    Think of it this way, if as a business your costs are always much higher than your sales, how long can that last?

    Kroneborge, this is economics we're talking about, not finances. Trade is ALWAYS both ways. The problem you are pointing out to is totally different - it has to do with monetary policy, but not with trade.

    Compartive advantage, and free trade etc, ONLY work when you are actually trading, not one country doing most of the buying and the other doing most of the selling.

    Countries do not buy or sell - only INDIVIDUALS buy or sell. You are looking at the wrong culprit.

    3. Actually there are a number of solutions like a net zero gas/carbon tax that could have a substainal benefit, without the government having to micro manage the economy.

    And we come to the geist of the conversation! Yet another attempt at justifying statism - why, I never saw that one coming!

  • Kroneborge||

    You're right, if you are the type of cosmoploitian elitist that isn't concerned about their country, then it really doesn't matter.

    Finally how is replacing the income or payroll tax with a carbon tax an increase in statism?

    At the most it's just mainting the status quo, although I would argue it's signficantly better to tax consumption than labor.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Kroneborge,

    You're right, if you are the type of cosmoploitian elitist that isn't concerned about their country, then it really doesn't matter.

    Oh, you're breaking my heart, Kroneborge - am I supposed to discard the principles of sound economics just for the mystical satisfaction of helping my "country"? You must be jesting.

    Finally how is replacing the income or payroll tax with a carbon tax an increase in statism?

    Not an increase - a justification for statism. ALL justifications for taxation are justifications for statism, for who else collects the loot?

    At the most it's just mainting the status quo, although I would argue it's signficantly better to tax consumption than labor.

    Let's see - it is better to steal from people for being alive than to steal from them for being productive . . . Yep, that's a

  • Kroneborge||

    Since we are going to steal from people one way or the other yes. Because a tax on consumption vs a tax on labor encourages production and savings, and discourages consumption. Something the US definitely needs.

    Also, we are NOT disgarding the principles of sound economics. Instead we are recongnizing that what happens in a country matters.

    That's what the whole idea of compartive advantage says, that trade is good for a "country" IF both parties are trading, then they can both be better off.

  • Eric||

    "IF both parties are trading"

    As has been said over and over again:

    both parties ARE trading, otherwise it would be theft.

    If I buy $30 worth of product X, I have the same net worth after the transaction as I did before. Now, if I use Product X foolishly or waste it, that is my problem. That would not be the fault of the person I traded with, or any other party.

  • ComradeZero||

    What if the person you bought it from loaned you the $30?

  • Old Mexican||

    Re; Kroneborge,

    Since we are going to steal from people one way or the other yes [taxes are justified].

    Phew! I am glad you cleared that matter for all: You justify wholesale thievery because the government already does it!

    Because a tax on consumption vs a tax on labor encourages production and savings, and discourages consumption. Something the US definitely needs.

    There's two problems here, Kroneborge: One, governments never ever substitute one form of tax for the other - they simply apply both for the greater loot. Second, taxes on consumption are always very regressive, meaning they hit the people with the lesser incomes on a higher proportion that people with higher incomes, leaving LESS disposable income for savings. Even if the tax was not levied on food stuffs and other crucial necessities, it would still make certain goods less accessible for them.


    Also, we are NOT disgarding the principles of sound economics. Instead we are recongnizing that what happens in a country matters.

    No, that's not the issue. You're focusing on the wrong problem - the culprit is monetary policy and politics, not trade. That is what I am trying to tell you. You're simply applying an emotional argument derived from some sense of patriotism, as if arbitrary political boundaries were necessary for economic activities.

    That's what the whole idea of compartive advantage says, that trade is good for a "country" IF both parties are trading, then they can both be better off.

    Comparative Advantage works also for States, Counties and even Burroughs, not just for "Countries". The concept of "Trade Deficit" is misleading, since it would imply somebody is getting something for free, which is not the case here - the Chinese and other exporters are obtaining exactly what they want, which is the worthless scraps of inked cotton which the government makes us use as currency. They seem to like them, so who are we to double-guess them?

  • Kroneborge||

    The regressive nature of consumption taxes can be gotten around fairly easily. For example, the prebate system the Fair Tax uses.

    Also agreed, you don't implement the new tax UNLESS, the old tax is phased out in the same bill.

    I'm simply stating that if the tax burden is the same, I think a consumption tax is the way to go.

    Also a consumption tax like the Fair tax is MUCH easier to figure. Thus freeing up the 200 billion in wasted resources that are spent on tax compliance/evasion.

    Agreed that monentary policy, and politics are part of the problem. But that doesn't mean you can't look at the results (the trade deficit) and say well this isn't a problem because a lot of it's causes are political.

    Finally unless our government chooses not to honor it's commitments then those little pieces of paper translate into power.

    A good example of this would be the power the US was able to use in the Suez Canal incident. Remember the golden rule. He who has the gold makes the rules.

  • Chad||

    I would argue that that the fair tax would have its own problems, and more critically, ANY taxes economic distortions scale super-linearly with size. A 20% income tax is more than twice as bad for the economy than a 10% income tax, for example.

    Here in the US, our income taxes, at least for people who make decent money, are actually fairly typical. What makes us a "low tax" country is our lack of a sales tax (VAT) and our low energy taxes. It would be much less economically distorting to raise these two than it would be to further increase our income taxes. Indeed, in the case of energy and pollution taxes, it would be economically correcting to raise them, as their externalities are nowhere near being fully accounted for.

  • Kroneborge||

    Yes, but the big benefits to the Fair Tax (and getting rid of the income tax, payroll tax etc) would be that we wouldn't have to waste nearly as much time/money on preparing/complying with taxes.

    As a CPA that might hurt my future income a bit, but I'm more than willing to make that sacrifice for the good of the country.

  • ||

    Because a tax on consumption vs a tax on labor encourages production and savings, and discourages consumption. Something the US definitely needs.

    Agreed. But it needs to be on all consumption not targeted consumption. (ie fairtax and not cap and trade)

    Also, we are NOT disgarding the principles of sound economics. Instead we are recongnizing that what happens in a country matters.

    Then what you really should want is a debt and deficit cap. We will always have a 'trade deficit' of real goods so long we allow the government to keep borrowing. The borrowing funds the protectionism which causes job, capital, and industry flight. It's a self reinforcing cycle.

    Stop 'protecting' wages. Stop spending.

    Instead of adjusting to the reality of a global economy we've built walls around our economy.

  • Kroneborge||

    I'm actually a big supporter of the Fair Tax. I'm not sure if it would alliviate the idea of a net zero carbon tax totally, but I would be more than willin to try. Also carbon tax much better than cap and trade IMO.

    2. Yes, we certainly need to reduce/eliminate the government debt problem. That wouldn't fix everything but it would be a big help.

  • Trailer Park Boys||

    Julian: You gotta spend money to make money, Rick

    Ricky: No, You keep your money, then you have your money.

  • ComradeZero||

    Fuckin' Donald Trump over there...

  • Chad||

    Actually, we need a VAT *and* and cap-and-trade. That would solve most of our problems.

  • ||

    A VAT is a horrible idea.

    Jesus Chad do you ever think things through? Or are you really just a shill for corporatism?

    A VAT is a goddamned free ride for big corporations who can evade transactions by going vertical. Guess who gets screwed. The little guy. Just as all your progressive policies always screw the little guy.

    Why? Because it's easier to deal with and milk big businesses. It's the whole idea of crony capitalism. Nice neat piles of corruption for the political class to milk.

    Freedom is too hard to manage.

    If you have to tax the best thing to tax is consumption and you tax it uniformly.

    And cap and trade is just a moronic solution to a non-existant problem.

  • Kroneborge||

    Here's a quick one.

    http://hotair.com/archives/200.....se-ground/

    I orginally read about the link in the economist, but can't find it atm.

  • ||

    Remember the long lines and gas shortages during the oil embargo? Actually I don't even though I'm more than old enough. A lot of the shortages came about due to the allocation of gasoline by the government. Since I live in Albuquerque which had a high allocation due to the fact that we normally get a lot of travelers that were not driving through during the shortage.

  • ||

    Folks who claim that we can generate all the power we need from solar, wind, biomass, etc... have absolutely no clue just how much power we use every single day. "Look at my windmill, it puts out 5kw for free!" Sure when the wind is blowing gale force. What do you do when the wind shifts or slows down? Have you stored up the excess power that was being generated? Renewables have a place at the outer edge of power demand but base line power needs many huge power plants to make sure that when you flip that switch, the light comes on.

  • Chad||

    Take a poster-sized map of the US. Stick your index finger anywhere in the southwest. That's how much solar, with today's technology, that you need to power the entire country.

    You also fail to understand the law of averages. The wind is always blowing somewhere, and the sun is shining in a manner well-matched to the loads. Geothermal is baseload, and tidal nearly so. We already have 18GW of storage on the grid, and there is no reason we cannot greatly amplify it.

    There are no technical problems with 100% renewables, only political ones.

  • Kroneborge||

    Also Solar thermal can run 24/7 and Geothermal as well.

    These guys had an interesting look at how to make Solar happen,

    http://www.scientificamerican......grand-plan

  • Chad||

    Here is a nice new wind article from NREL. It finds that getting 20% of our power from wind by 2030 is no technical problem at all.

    http://climateprogress.org/201.....e-by-2024/

    Being from the Great Lakes, I am a big fan of pumped storage, which makes up most of the 18GW of storage on the current grid. We can build more of these all around the lakes.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/L.....ower_Plant

    God was kind enough to put this wonderful storage opportunity smack in between some of our best wind resources and our biggest loads, too. The Lord shall provideth...

  • Tony||

    At least this thread isn't overwhelmed by wingnut denier morons.

    Fun fact!

  • ||

    Did Mr. Rupert "FOX" Murdoch's mentor/major-shareholder, His Royal Highness Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, ghost write this for Stossel?

  • suckitupcrybaby||

    We are energy independent, the greens just won't let us get to it. We have billions upon billions of barrels of oil in the shale deposits in Colorado and Utah. This have as much oil as Saudi Arabia, Iran, Iraq, Venezuela, Nigeria, Kuwait, Libya, Angola, Algeria, Indonesia, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates combined. Don't forget the large deposits in Anwr Alaska, The Government and the greens are throwing road blocks at the oil companies. T.Boone Pickens is abandoning his wind turbine fields to go hard after natural gas which is so abundant in America. It is cheep and clean. Problem is this won't put money in Al Gores pocket.
    www.suckitupcrybaby.com

  • ||

    Renewable is Doable. You are right when it becomes economically viable it will support itself. However I hate to see America still in the horse and buggy stage when we can be the movers and shakers of the next thing. There will be a next thing or we will go back to the stone age, because there is a finite amount and an infinite amount of demand. Simple as that. When that happens is for the geeks to figure out, how to get ahead of the curve is for the winners to figure out. As far as I care the oil countries can eat their sand and chase it with their oil. They better find and alternative way to grow crops without using oil or they will perish.

  • SM||

    Listen to all these babies here...unreal...

    ...if you want to be free, that means you have to be free to suffer, and free to die. There is no other way. You can keep living in your authoritarian mindset like "worrying about mass unemployment and starvation" or "worry about making the planet uninhabitable" - and force us to live in bondage. Or you can live free, and stop worrying about the concequences, even if that means the human race perishes.

    If a corporation wants to pollute, so be it. They need to be free. If it causes cancer in every kid in this world, so be it. It is better to be free with cancer than to live in the authoritarian bondage of regulation.

    When gas gets to $20 a gallon here, sure, people will be out of jobs for a while, and live lives at a low standard of living, but eventually the market will adapt.

    You can't worry about concequences when looking at absolutes like rights. The whiners here missed the entire point of this article. Unbelieveable...

  • ||

    We can count on oil shale development. btw...how do free markets work without regulation? What is the most self-regulated sport but football? It has a very complex rule system, down to the displays after scores, socks, shoes, etc. and yet is very successful in a competitive environment.

  • ||

    btw...in Indiana we have close to billion barrels estimate of oil reserves that are not economically extractable due to the pretty flambeaus that dominated the landscape during the 1800's.

    They were pretty...and easily explotable natural gas made them so.

  • ||

    The Islamo-philia of the developed world sends trillions of dollars a year to the hostile cultures of the Muslim Middle East. Iran, for example, and Saddam's Iraq, used the money to build war machines and nuclear war machines to use against us. They use our money to buy our technology to destroy us.

    And yes Saddam previously had a nuclear weapons program, just not in 2003.

    The primary environmental cost of paying for Mideast oil will be the blast and radioactive fallout from a nuclear war.

    The only medium-term solution to keep the peace is to keep pumping the oil but stop paying for it. I know it seems rude but the most moral choice is to steal the oil. And we must use the time to develop new economically sensible alternative sources of energy.

    It isn't necessary to invade Iran and install democracy, just conquer the oil fields and leave the Ayatollahs to live on nuts and rugs. Don't try to manage the people, just manage the oil fields. If we destroy their military they won't be able to afford to build a new one.

  • ||

    Oops, that's "trillions of dollars", not "trillions of dollars a year"

  • ||

    Yet, another Obama moron:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BTH-gqMx8jk

  • abercrombie milano||

  • watches||

    The Islamo-philia of the developed world sends trillions of dollars a year to the hostile cultures of the Muslim Middle East. Iran, for example, and Saddam's Iraq, used the money to buildreplica omega war machines and nuclear war machines to use against us. They use our money to buy our technology to destroy us.

  • Finnish Lapphund||

    The marketplace is actually forget about irrational compared to progress (another intricate system). Final results take place spontaneously through myriads regarding REALISTIC trades among men and women. You might have absolutely no comprehension from the many matter you're dealing with. Finnish Lapphund breed

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