The Daily Sandwich

"We have to learn the lesson that intellectual honesty is fundamental for everything we cherish." -Sir Karl Popper

Location: Boston, Massachusetts, United States


Friday, July 07, 2006

White House energy policy-- same song, same verse

Ezra Klein makes an interesting point on what Bush said about energy policy last night on Larry King's show.

We have done a lot to deal with greenhouse gases by advancing new technologies. I campaigned against Al Gore. I said we're going to spend money for clean coal technologies and we're in the process of doing that and one of these days people are going to look back and say, well, thank goodness the Bush administration made these investments because we'll be able to have electricity from coal that won't pollute.[...]

But we're the ones -- my administration started the hydrogen initiative. Spent over a billion dollars for research in the hopes that we'll be able to power our automobiles by hydrogen, which would be an amazing advance in -- in -- in -- in -- in cleaning the environment. We've done more on ethanol that any administration. We've got a great record and -- but this town is full of politics. People just say what they want to say.

As Klein observes, this amounts to more corporate welfare, namely in the form of handouts to big oil, of all places. It's typical of this administration, and highlights their total inability to move beyond their core ideology to deal with new problems. Disaster management, port security, war contracts, health care, public safety, and the environment-- the response in each case has been to remove control and oversight from government agencies and put it all in the hands of corporations, complete with blank checks. In some cases that could be a good thing, but under this White House it's cost billions and failed miserably, especially regarding contractors in Iraq and the response to Katrina. But it's the only idea the Bushies have.