Small minds play it safe

Heard a speech by John McCain on TV from Richardson, TX about energy policy.  It proved that McCain is an incrementalist.  His “big ideas” are consistent with his long membership in the country’s most famous “debating society” (the Senate.)  His big ideas include developing electric cars that go 100 miles without a recharge, and use of nuclear energy, because “we like to imitate the French.” (which “we” are we talking about, John?)

I have trouble with those statements.  First, the current standard for electric vehicles is 100 miles. The innovative thinkers are talking about use of solar to drive the normal commuting distance, there and back, with batteries available today.

Even Hillary Clinton is talking about more efficient autos, alternate fuels (“like ethanol”), and hybrid gas/electric.

Obama wants tax credits for alternative energy, like wind energy.  He wants to put $150B into new energy development, pay to ramp up production, and implement widespread.  This is to offset the $1B sent to other countries on oil.  And if we changed the mileage standards to 40pmg, Obama says, we could save the equivalent of all the oil imported from the middle east.   So that means we’re going to spend $150B to save $1B, when we could save that $1Billion by using the efficient cars that Congress has let the auto industry ignore for decades.  (Why not leave $140B of that money in the pockets of Americans, and let them use existing pace of technology to solve the gasoline problem within a decade – and we’re getting close.  See EnergyTech for details.)

I didn’t see a video for Huckabee (CNN commentators, like Amy Holmes  – a so-called political strategist – are still shilling for McCain, and smile depricatingly when they talk about Huckabee’s chances.), but I checked his website.  He says that “our (energy) efforts are haphazard and often pointless.”  Instead, he says “We’ve never harnessed the real energy source that independence requires – the energy of the American people.”

In the end, I agree closest to Mike Huckabee on this issue.  Here’s his strategy:  “We will remove red tape that slows innovation. We will set aside a federal research and development budget that will be matched by the private sector to seek the best new products in alternative fuels. Our free market will sort out what makes the most sense economically and will reward consumer preferences.”


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