When you hear the words “energy independence” you probably don’t consider everyone in America adopting a Stone Age lifestyle to achieve it. No, you think of America producing enough energy, or enough efficiency, to achieve zero energy imports without sacrificing your standard of living. But according to Harold Hamm in The Wall Street Journal, degrading Americans’ standard of living is exactly the strategy Joe Bide is employing, and it’s all going to go wrong. Hamm writes:
Gasoline prices had their biggest one-day increase in a year on July 25, rising to an eight-month high, while oil passed $80 a barrel. More than half a century of experience working in the oil industry tells me that with the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries doing all it can to keep prices high, the only way to prevent them from rising higher is to produce more oil and gas here at home.
President Biden has pursued the opposite strategy. Instead of increasing production, he wants to mandate that Americans use less—by banning or restricting the use of gas stoves, gas heat, air conditioning and even cars with combustion engines. That is a recipe for lower living standards, higher prices and a waning of America’s geopolitical leadership.
Every time government intervenes in unpredictable energy markets, politicians get it wrong. Take the Fuel Use Act of 1978. The young Sen. Joe Biden and Rep. Al Gore were among those who championed the act, which mandated the use of coal to generate electricity because so-called experts were sure the U.S. was running out of oil and natural gas.
Then in 1980 the Carter administration spent billions of dollars on renewable-energy subsidies and even a business called Synthetic Fuels Corp. that went bankrupt six years later. When Ronald Reagan let the market work by deregulating energy, oil production soared and prices tumbled. No one worried about running out of oil anymore.
That is, until Barack Obama came into office. In 2011, when gasoline prices rose, Mr. Obama said that “we can’t just drill our way out of the problem.” He worried that America was going to run out of places to drill and that energy companies would want to drill on the Washington Mall. So instead Mr. Obama spent millions on now bankrupt propositions such as the solar-energy company Solyndra.
The politicians weren’t paying attention to the amazing shale revolution driven by such oil and natural gas companies as Continental Resources. Horizontal drilling exploded in the late 2000s in the Bakken Shale in North Dakota, the Marcellus Shale in Pennsylvania, and later in the Permian Basin in Texas. America has doubled its oil and gas output in less than 15 years.
Yet Mr. Biden still says wind and solar are the future. Let’s be honest. We’ve spent trillions of dollars on wind and solar, and the technology is maxed out. The blades are about as big as they can get, and the panels are going to become essentially worthless in years to come because of new technologies. We can go on shaping policy over pipe dreams and flawed math, or we can choose to put America on a path toward energy independence and dominance.
Action Line: You don’t deserve to have your standard of living lowered for anyone’s political ideals. You have worked hard and saved til it hurt to protect your standard of living during retirement. Now with a little help to maintain it all, you can enjoy your hard-earned retirement years in peace. When you want that help, I’m here.
E.J. Smith - Your Survival Guy
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