Andrew Clem home
Andrew Clem banner

Blog post

Monthly archives
(all categories)

August 5, 2008 [LINK / comment]

Obama changes his tune (III)

Once again, "president-in-waiting" (that's what he thinks) Barack Obama has reversed course on a major policy issue, and once again he did so smoothly and effortlessly that hardly anyone noticed. Last time it was about whether to unilaterally withdraw U.S. forces from Iraq (see my July 4 blog post), and now it's about drilling for domestic petroleum. Under pressure from the McCain campaign,* he now says he would support allowing drilling in U.S. territories and offshore areas that are currently off-limits for environmental reasons. See Washington Post. Well, you can't blame him for facing up to reality every once in a while.

* McCain is passing out tire pressure gauges labelled "Obama's energy plan" smile to make fun of Obama's crazy claim that if everyone kept their tire pressure properly inflated, there would be no need for additional petroleum supplies. Actually, this raises a fundamental issue that few people appreciate: If energy prices rise to a high enough level that reflects the true relative scarcity of the commodity in question (oil, coal, etc.), then people will make those "conservation" efforts out of sheer self-interest. It's what Ronald Reagan used to call the "magic of the market place."

Even as Obama gets a "reality check," some environmental activists are digging in for total resistance. In today's Washington Post the National Resources Defense Council ran a full-page ad mocking the offshore drilling proposal as Bush's "snake oil" just because the benefits may take several years to be realized. As I wrote on June 19, just because it's a "slow fix" doesn't mean it shouldn't be tried. In fact, offshore oil rigs have been found to create a hospitable habitat for various kinds of mollusks and fish, like a reef. As long as there are no leaks, that is...

Posted (or last updated or commented upon): 05 Aug 2008, 8: 26 AM

(unformatted URL)

This post is over a week old, so comments are closed.

© Andrew G. Clem. All rights reserved. Your use of this material signifies your acceptance of the Terms of use.

Hits on this page (single blog post) since July 2, 2007:

Category archives:
(all years)

This (or that) year's
blog highlights

Blog highlights have been compiled for the years 2010-2012 thus far, and eventually will be compiled for earlier years, back to 2002.


The "home made" blog organization system that I created was instituted on November 1, 2004, followed by several functional enhancements in subsequent years. I make no more than one blog post per day on any one category, so some posts may cover multiple news items or issues. Blog posts appear in the following (reverse alphabetical) order, which may differ from the chronological order in which the posts were originally made:

  1. Wild birds (LAST)
  2. War
  3. Science & Technology
  4. Politics
  5. Latin America
  6. Culture & Travel
  7. Canaries ("Home birds")
  8. Baseball (FIRST)