Bob's Links and Rants

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Wednesday, March 31, 2004

I hate to say it...
But I think the White House is right:

The White House again rejected calls to tap into the nation's emergency stockpile of oil, called the Strategic Petroleum Oil Reserve. "You have to keep in mind that there are national security concerns involved when you are talking about that issue, particularly after September 11," McClellan said.

Higher gas prices, I realize, are about as popular as gangrenous hemorrhoids. But keeping gas prices low has cost us so much over the years in terms of lives, pollution, sprawl, wars, social fabric, and so on. And on this one, although they're probably just helping out their oil exec buddies, the Bushies are right. When a severe oil shortage hits, which it will, the strategic oil reserve may well be needed to provide critical heating needs in a cold winter and to keep the ambulances and firetrucks running. Depleting that reserve so we can save 10 cents a gallon now (and continue to blissfully ignore the inevitable) would be as shortsighted as, well, huge tax cuts for the rich in the face of massive deficits.

The best and simplest way to address the impending oil shortage is by substantially raising the gasoline tax. Unfortunately, the two Skull & Bones candidates are trying to outdo each other in saying how stupid this great idea is.