Rome, NY Sucks

But At Least We're Not Utica

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Shut up, Bill

This is actually directed at O'Reilly and not Clinton. Bill O'Reilly is yet again on the oil issue with his frequent shallow grasp of the issue. I was going to write about oil in a blog post, but I thought I would point out the lack of solution in some of Bill's solutions.

1. Make the car companies produce flex fuel vehicles:
Manufacturers don't like to be ordered to make anything. The electric car fiasco of the mid 90s showed this. The fact is, GM and Ford make plenty of Flex Fuel vehicles. No one buys them. Something like 1% of gas stations in the US offer E85 ethanol and many of them are in the corn belt. Hybrids (like the Prius) and plug in hybrids (like the upcoming GM Volt) are the current trend in fuel saving cars.

2. Become the next Brazil and grow our fuel:
I heard this on his radio show. Someone called in and tried to explain that a country that close to the equator could grow sugar cane with a much higher energy content than anything in the US. In typical fashion, Bill ignored it. The US is not Brazil. We have further drives and we're not a socialist dictatorship.Plus, even the tiny increase in corn based ethanol production has lead to a food crisis worldwide.
Now, places like our own Rome, NY are looking into using waste products like wood chips and switchgrass for fuel. But they still have to get over the hurdle of needing as much fuel to cook the source material as they get out in fuel. Right now, corn ethanol has the same problem. With transpost and harvesting, ethanol is a net energy loser compared to petroleum.

3. Us vs Them:
The big bad Arabs at OPEC want to screw the USA. Maybe, but that's not the problem. The "price" of oil is a function of the dollar. A dollar buys less euros, yuans, pounds and commodities than before. Obviously, it's going to buy less oil. Oil trading is based on its future price, like the housing market. When that price becomes higher than its value, like the housing market, oil contracts will devalue fast.
And remember, our dependence on foreign oil does not stop at the US border. All our Chinese and Mexican made products require fuel to produce them. Plus, most plastic is made from petroleum. China has few qualms about buying oil from Iran and drilling in coastal waters. In fact, while the US won't drill on the Florida coast, China is partnering with Cuba to drill 90 miles away on the Cuban coast.

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  • At June 10, 2008 12:38 PM, Blogger Cato said…

    I think you've made some good points. The larger picture is that this oil and food crisis seems to be government-induced. High taxation, stringent control on supply, and government controlling more of the food supply are the real problems.

    Check out these things and see if they have any common denominators: Afghanistan oil pipeline, Iraq "war," ethanol failure/food prices, Rupert Murdoch, Monsanto, and the Federal Reserve Bank.

  • At June 11, 2008 7:58 PM, Blogger Jhakkash said…

  • At October 15, 2008 1:23 AM, Blogger mrpeaches said…

    You're a friggin idiot


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