Monday, August 29, 2005

What If ...

Does this photo upset you?

The photo comes from an April meeting in Crawford, Texas, between President Bush and Saudi Crown Prince Abdullah. The focus of the meeting was oil prices.

As The New York Times reported, the talks "focused on a plan by the Saudis to increase their oil-pumping capacity over the next decade rather than on any short-term efforts to bring prices down."

When the photo was taken, in April, OPEC was charging $48.68 a barrel. But according to an article in the Aug. 28 edition of the Washington Post, "Oil prices reached record highs on the New York Mercantile Exchange last week, hovering below $68 a barrel before the close of trading Friday."

So what has all that hand-holding gotten the U.S.?

Squat.

***

What if the United States had an honest dialogue with the Saudis? What if the U.S. stopped coddling the Saudis, and started expecting them to be a true ally, both as a trading partner as well as a partner in the "war on terror."

We know that Osama bin Laden is Saudi, and that the vast majority of the 9/11 suicide bombers were Saudi. What if the U.S. demanded that our hand-holding buddies in Saudi Arabia help finance our bringing Osama to justice?

What if the U.S. demanded that our hand-holding buddies in Saudi Arabia do something about the flow of Saudi "foreign fighters" joining the Iraqi insurgency? At the very least, shouldn't President Bush, when discussing these foreign fighters, tell the American people that more than half are Saudi?

And what if the Bush Administration followed-up, as required by law, on its designating Saudi Arabia a “country of particular concern” for “severe religious freedom violations” pursuant to International Religious Freedom Act?

***

Here's another related "What If."

What if the U.S. actually had an energy policy that resulted in reduced dependence on foreign oil, giving the U.S. a fallback if our hand-holding Saudi friends failed to come through for us?

Shouldn't we start taking our dependence on foreign oil seriously? The recently passed energy bill has "no magic bullets" to counteract the recent run-up in gas prices, Energy Secretary Sam Bodman said last month.

"It's going to take a number of months, if not years, to deal with energy prices," Bodman said at a press conference.

Environmental and consumer groups criticized the energy legislation for doing little to cut U.S. oil consumption, which averages close to 21 million barrels a day, or to reduce America's dependence on foreign oil suppliers.

Among the Democratic proposals killed in the final version of the mutli-billion legislation was a requirement that the White House find savings of 1 million barrels of oil by 2015.

"This bill funnels billions of taxpayer dollars to polluting energy industries, and opens up our coastlines and wildlands to destructive oil and gas activities," Carl Pope, director of the Sierra Club, told Reuters.

11 Comments:

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7:55 PM  
Blogger Michael said...

Yum... splogs.

It would be easy for Blogger to add some mechanisms to stop, non-humans from posting comments. Might help keep some of the stupider right wingnuts out as well.

As far as OPEC is concerned, Sheik Ahmed Fahd Al Ahmed Al Sabah, President of OPEC, is quoted in Sunday's Washingto Post pointing out the OPEC oil production has increased. More crude is useless without the refining capacity, and that is apparently the bottleneck.

Your last question is the more important. This country is like a crack-addict when it comes to getting our oil fix. For decades it's been the Left that has championed alternative, renewable energy. Gore is a great example. But the Right has proven how consistently wrong they can be by actively fighting such measures as increasing fuel efficiency of US cars. According to the Red Stater Brigade, it is our patriotic duty to drive SUVs to the 7-11, and waste as much gas as we possibly can.

When the chickens came home to roost and it became painfully clear what the real price is to be paid for the corruption and oppression of the US funded oil tyrants in the Middle East, the Right is still in denial.

Never admit you were wrong, Republicans. Just keep whistling and spinning while the killing marches on.

3:16 AM  
Blogger orangeroom said...

The US should follow Brazil’s lead and take a serious look at ethanol. Through the use of ethanol, Brazil is able to offset the extreme fluctuations in the price of crude oil.

http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-ethanol15jun15,0,3313642.story?track=tothtml

5:22 PM  

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