The Heritage Foundation and the Institute for Energy Research have posted a revealing video about the economic harm that the Obama administration is causing with its War on Domestic Energy. Many Gulf Coast companies are shrinking or dying because of the Permitorium on offshore drilling. Seahawk Drilling used to own and operate shallow-water oil rigs in the Gulf of Mexico. Now they’re bankrupt and 632 people are out of work. In the video, Seahawk Drilling CEO Randall Stilley describes how the drilling permit moratorium is putting companies out of business and innocent people out of work.
632 jobs may not seem like much in the big picture of the American economy, but Seahawk Drilling is just one of many companies that have failed or been forced to reduce their size and workforce. Thousands of jobs in the Gulf oil industry have been destroyed. Many more businesses and jobs that have nothing to do with Gulf oil have been eliminated due to the loss of jobs in the oil industry. Obama’s War on Domestic Energy is also pushing government deficits at the federal and state level higher as revenue from energy production is lost.
While offshore drilling may be the most prominent victim of the Obamatorium on domestic energy, it is far from the only victim. The U.S. has coal reserves that make Saudi Arabia’s oil reserves look miniscule. Alaskan coal (low-sulfur coal, by the way) is fueling economic expansion … in Asia, not the U.S. Western states like Utah and Colorado are also sitting on enormous coal and oil shale resources that are locked away by the Obamatorium. Recent advances in technology have uncovered massive natural gas reserves that we are not accessing.
Barack Obama is waging a War on Domestic Energy for the purpose of driving up fuel prices, but the cost of gasoline is only the tip of the Obamatorium iceberg. The pump price of gasoline is only one symptom of the Obamatorium. Every industry that uses petroleum derivatives is affected. Every industry related to transportation–e.g., airlines, trucking–see their costs going up. Rising transportation costs drive up the cost of all goods because all goods are being shipped from a production source to a retail source. The production of food is an energy intensive business because of all the equipment necessary to produce enough food on a limited amount of farm land. Most of us are aware of these costs, but there are many more. Petroleum-based products are ubiquitous. They are used to produce things like plastics and synthetic rubbers that are found in nearly everything we own. They are used in medicines. Virtually everything we own and use requires oil. Even products that contain no oil derivatives couldn’t be made and sold without it.
The Obamatorium is one of the principle forces driving unemployment and inflation. We need jobs and we need energy. The only viable source of energy to supply our transportation needs is fossil fuels. Biofuels can help, but there simply isn’t enough available land for growing the amount of biomass it would take to seriously reduce the demand for gasoline. There is no viable substitute for other oil-based products like synthetic rubber. The only long-term alternative for electrical production that is available right now is nuclear (there may be some additional capacity for hydroelectric, but not enough to have a significant impact nationwide). Wind and solar power are too expensive and require too much land to make a significant contribution.
We need energy policies that encourage domestic energy production. The right energy policies encourage domestic production while protecting the environment. Our current energy policies don’t do a good job of either, despite onerous regulations that make it difficult and expensive to develop fossil fuel sources. If we get government restraints out of the way, hold energy companies liable for any accidents or spills, and create a free market for energy (something we DO NOT have now) oil prices will go back down and so will the costs of everything else from food to gasoline without the environmental damage about which the Chicken Little environmentalists constantly prattle.
Obama, Stop The War!