Thursday, August 21, 2008

Ohio GOP Bob Latta Up to his Neck in Alaskan Oil

I used to think that Republicans were smart people and surely some are. They must think the rest of us are stupid. Take this energy crunch for example. After 8 years of the Bush-Cheney fossil fuels fiasco, the GOP suddenly has discovered that there are alternative sources of energy. Have they been in a cave all of that time? Where were they when President Carter turned down the thermostat in the White House back in 1979?

Bob Latta [R] Bowling Green is surely one of the most dense congressmen in this neck of the woods. He joined several other GOP law makers [at tax payer expense] on a multi-day tour of Alaska's ANWR to 'study' the feasibility of opening it up to oil drilling. He talked to a few natives there. No joke, that was the 'study.'

Today The Blade has a photo and story of him with fellow GOP House whip Roy Blunt at First Solar. The Blade writes:
With Bowling Green's four towering white wind turbines as a backdrop, Mr. Blunt joined U.S. Rep. Bob Latta (R., Bowling Green) in touting the Republican's energy bill, which Mr. Latta described as an "all of the above" policy that includes not only the offshore drilling that Democrats oppose but promotion of renewable energy sources like wind and solar.

"We have to have an all of the above policy," Mr. Latta said. "We need to have nuclear. We need to have clean coal technology. We need to have hydro and, at the same time, we need to have all these renewables out here."

Oh really? 'We need to have all of these renewables out there?' Apparently Mr. Latta didn't know about alternatives to fossil fuels, but then, he's a Republican and can't see past the smog of coal and oil.

Blunt, ever the clever politician, said this, referring to Democrats:
"I think clearly the pressure on them in the three weeks we've been working at home in August has been incredible, and you're beginning to see their leaders change their tune."

The 'pressure' to which he refers is for off-shore oil drilling, a strong plank in the GOP political platform- just like an oil rig platform. That pressure comes from the dumbed-down electorate that Blunt and others hope will continue into November. Drilling our way out of the oil crisis is akin to feeding beers to an alcoholic. But that's where the campaign dollars are and the GOP and Big Oil have had a great 8-year partnership that began with that secret meeting hosted by Dick Cheney.

Once again the GOP is hoping for an ignorant electorate who can be fooled into believing that off-shore drilling will lower the price at the pump. Why not hope that? After all, it has worked election after election. Recall how many Americans thought that John Kerry was 'not fit for command' and voted Bush a second term. Right!

In another story, it is reported that yesterday 53 companies offered $607 million for leases covering 1.8 million acres in federal waters off Texas. Yet, 90% of the tracts the government auctioned off received no bids. No bids? Why is that? Apparently that 90% didn't offer quick profits and profit is the name of the game in the oil business.

I wonder how Mr. Latta would be able to tell his constituents that we need to drill, drill, drill yet, when offered a cheap government lease in Texas coastal waters, 90% of the tracts were unbid. Alaska, eh, Mr. Latta? Is that the answer to our energy woes?

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