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Chan Lowe: Oil prices spike


Here we go again. We’ve been through so many gas price boom cycles that we know the script by heart: The lefties will say “We told you so,” and call for fuel tax hikes and business credits to be applied to developing alternative sources of energy, and they’ll get nowhere. The conservatives will first figure out some way to blame Obama, and once they’ve dealt with that priority, they’ll call for planting rigs right on Waikiki Beach if that’s what it takes to become energy independent.

Hardly anybody ever talks about this topic when fuel prices are low. That, of course, would be the best time to slap on a federal fuel tax, when it would do the least damage to the economy. Nobody in congress is willing to commit political suicide just yet, however. Better to play it safe and wait, so that high prices caused by disturbances in Libya, of all places, will result in our paying the same kind of “tax,” only to the Saudis and Venezuelans rather than to Washington.

The body politic only becomes agitated and focused when the pain hits it in the wallet. Then, of course, it becomes susceptible to demagoguery. Enter the shills for the oil industry, who argue for drilling in ANWR and other politically sensitive locales. They know none of this oil will make a difference for twenty years, and even then, of only a couple of cents per gallon.

One thing they have learned from President Obama, however, is never to let a crisis go to waste. Those cheaper, domestic wells will be producing long after the sense of crisis goes away, and we’ll still be hooked on what they’re peddling. Since oil is a world commodity, the oil companies can charge the same high prices for oil they don’t have to cart in from overseas.

Let the dance begin.

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This gas problem needs to be solved and quickly.Just the other day i almost ran out of gas. Just my luck, my wallet had been left home. i fumbled between the seats and raised 36 cents. I then asked the clerk for 36 cents worth of gas. 'THE CLERK SAID ,36 CENTS WORTH OF GAS-- HOW BOUT A Fart and a receipt--NOW GET OUT.

If gasoline would have been $5 a gallon back when Ross Perot said it should be $5 a gallon we would not have invaded Iraq.

Too many people use the remaining coal-fired power-plants as an excuse to keep us dependent upon (foreign) oil - till the oil becomes so scarce that our economies crash because of the cost of it (about to happen, again. We are getting warned right now.)

Don't use corporate "chop-logic" to connect oil to coal - unless it is only to say that they are both soon to become history book stories. I am sure you know that one of the reasons to quit using oil is that the planet is rapidly running out of it - global demand has out-stripped supply and supply is dwindling. Warnings have been in the news and largely ignored - hence, $4/gal soon, with another economic nose-dive.
We are not rapidly running out of coal. It's price is not sky-rocketing. It is on the way out for other reasons, and electric cars, this cartoon to the contrary, appearing to claim ele. cars are tied to it, will not stop its demise! Furthermore, about 70% of the worlds oil is put in vehicles. Switching cars, trucks, boats, ... to electric can have a BIG effect on both oil consumption and global warming. Plugging in a few cars to "the grid" is not a deal breaker. It won't stop the conversion to new power sources. If anything, the raised consciousness of it, will accelerate it.

Show that electric car plugged into roof-top solar panels or wind turbines. That is "where it is at." That is its future.

Why do people think that their electricity comes from the air? It takes either a gas fired furnace or coal fired furnace to product the energy to turn the turbines to produce the electricity. Electricity is not green free. You may save on gas on one end, but you are consuming a fossil fuel on the other end of that electrical outlet.

Also, people should be standing on the capitol steps demanding that the use of ethanol be banned. Are we that stupid to believe that taking a food product to produce an energy is helping us? Why are we letting the government create an artificial increase in costs in these dire times?

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About the author
Chan LoweCHAN LOWE has been the Sun Sentinel’s first and only editorial cartoonist for the past twenty-six years. Before that, he worked as cartoonist and writer for the Oklahoma City Times and the Shawnee (OK) News-Star.

Chan went to school in New York City, Los Angeles, and the U.K., and graduated from Williams College in 1975 with a degree in Art History. He also spent a year at Stanford University as a John S. Knight Journalism Fellow.

His work has won numerous awards, including the Green Eyeshade Award and the National Press Foundation Berryman Award. He has also been a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. His cartoons have won multiple first-place awards in all of the Florida state journalism contests, and The Lowe-Down blog, which he began in 2008, has won writing awards from the Florida Press Club and the Society of Professional Journalists.
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