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Suicidal Tendencies: Congress and Energy

At first glance, one would think that someone needs to explain the definition of incentive to Nancy Pelosi.

As they reversed their long-held opposition to more offshore oil exploration, Democrats said the increased taxes on oil companies in the bill and the collection of royalty payments from the drilling would yield billions of dollars to help finance the development of cleaner, renewable energy sources.

"We're not trying to give incentives to drill, we're giving incentives to invest in renewables and natural gas that will take us where we need to go," House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (Calif.) told reporters before the vote.

The legislation now moves to the Senate, where it will compete with three alternative proposals, each of which faces a difficult road to securing the 60 votes needed for passage.

Taking even more taxes from energy producers - already among the most heavily taxed industries in the nation - is not an incentive for them to produce new or old energy sources.

But it's not about them. One must understand that Nancy Pelosi is not talking about energy companies that will produce the energy necessary now and in the future. She is talking about government and incentives for government to "invest in renewables and natural gas that will take us where we need to go."

It gets worse.

Fred Kagan, co-architect of the successful surge strategy in Iraq, explains bluntly in The Weekly Standard how Pelosi's Democrat colleagues in the Senate - namely Chuck Schumer, John Kerry and Claire McCaskill - torpedoed development contracts in Iraq for US energy companies. Those contracts were then awarded to a ready China instead, because Iraq needed the development immediately.

Why, after all the assistance we've given to Iraq over the past five years, was the first major Iraqi oil deal signed with China and not with an American or even a western company? The answer is, in part, because three Democratic senators intervened in Iraqi domestic politics earlier this year to prevent Iraq from signing short-term agreements with Exxon Mobil, Shell, Total, Chevron, and BP.

The Iraqi government was poised to sign no-bid contracts with those firms this summer to help make immediate and needed improvements in Iraq's oil infrastructure. The result would have been significant foreign investment in Iraq, an expansion of Iraqi government revenues, and an increase in the global supply of oil. One would have thought that leading Democratic senators who claim to be interested in finding other sources of funding to replace American dollars in Iraq, in helping Iraq spend its own money on its own people, and in lowering the price of gasoline for American citizens, would have been all for it. Instead, Senators Chuck Schumer, John Kerry, and Claire McCaskill wrote a letter to Secretary of State Rice asking her "to persuade the GOI [Government of Iraq] to refrain from signing contracts with multinational oil companies until a hydrocarbon law is in effect in Iraq." The Bush administration wisely refused to do so, but the resulting media hooraw in Iraq led to the cancellation of the contracts, and helps to explain why Iraq is doing oil deals instead with China.

These are the same suicidal tendencies that have allowed the House and Senate to sleep well at night while the same Chinese oil companies have trekked across the globe to drill off our own Florida coast while we continue to refuse.

Our economy cannot survive this for much longer. There is a global competition for energy resources and our elected leaders refuse to allow us to compete. Certainly not on a level playing field.


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Comments (9)

Oh pshaw Steve, Pelo... (Below threshold)
Larry:


Oh pshaw Steve, Pelosi understands incentives. This is where she buys stock in T.Boone's company and then provides incentives to make her stock worth more. Got it?

Ok, I am half joking.

Where I am not joking is indirect taxes. This is where Congress taxes oil companies for their "Excess" profits and the oil companies pass the extra on to the consumer when they buy gas or diesel at the pump.

The US is blessed with abundant energy. I have read somewhere that we have the largest coal reserves in the world. Certainly in shale oil, we have at least 800 billion barrels in recoverable oil plus maybe double that needs more technology to get to. 800 billion barrels is as much as the rest of the world combined.

For reasons I don't understand, we don't seem to be using our resources, both natural and human, in ways that work for us.

Schumer, Kerry, Kennedy, Pe... (Below threshold)
retired military:

Schumer, Kerry, Kennedy, Pelosi. I look forward to old age when these idiots will be long gone. But then they will be replaced by young idiots who probably know less.

Didn't Pelosi buy a bunch o... (Below threshold)
fg:

Didn't Pelosi buy a bunch of stock in natural gas that she is pushing? Pickin's company?

For heaven's sake. Don't a... (Below threshold)
Stephen in Alabama:

For heaven's sake. Don't any of you people read anything except right wing propaganda?

First: China is NOT drilling for oil in the Gulf of Mexico. Period.

Second: We are expected to believe that the Iraqi oil minister was persuaded by the "hoohaw" of discussion in our Congress to cancel oil deals? Bullshit. They got a better deal from China and gave us the finger. 4,000 plus died for your stupidity, and this is your reward. Do you get it yet?

The news this week: Democr... (Below threshold)

The news this week: Democrat senators screw up in such a way that Iraq will now deal with communist China instead of capitalist American companies. Bill Ayers, unrepentant homegrown communist terrorist, turns out to have given Barack Obama his start in politics. The credit crunch comes from the housing bubble which comes from Bill Clinton-mandated loans to people who can't afford to pay them back, and now American financial institutions like AIG and Merrill freakin' Lynch are going under.

Has NOBODY in Washington read Atlas Shrugs?

Actually, I do know Hillary read it. You see, her entire campaign was based on the actions of the BAD GUYS from that book.

Those Senators should be dr... (Below threshold)
Zelsdorf Ragshaft III:

Those Senators should be dragged from their offices, taken to the nearest tree and hanged. They are treasonous bastards who should not be allowed to draw breath.
depp=true
notiz=tone it down, Zelsdorf. That's about seven steps across the line of accepability. --J.

It's official. If you vote... (Below threshold)
Jo:

It's official. If you vote for democrats you're an idiot. Libertarians, Independents, wake up!!

Nancy Pelosi is still learn... (Below threshold)

Nancy Pelosi is still learning how to talk around her teeth, so it doesn't surprise me that she would bastardize the word "incentive". It also doesn't surprise me that she would be proud of raising taxes on Big Oil while seeking to curb their income capacity, all under the pretense of "doing the right thing".

They weren't so worried about fanning "the perception that U.S. involvement in there was motivated by oil" or any other perception as they continued to demoralize troops, send messages around the world that the war was illegal and fought long and hard to bring it to an abrupt end. If it wasn't about oil to begin with, she's certainly made it all about oil now.

Stephen said:

We are expected to believe that the Iraqi oil minister was persuaded by the "hoohaw" of discussion in our Congress to cancel oil deals?

That's not what Kagan said. He said the "resulting media hooraw in Iraq". Valid arguments are not based on misquoting.

No. China is not drilling in the Gulf. Yet. But we can't ignore the exploration contracts Cuba is signing with China, India and other countries around the world right off our Florida coast and expect us to just sit idly by and hope they sell us some of it.

"We're not trying to giv... (Below threshold)
iurockhead:

"We're not trying to give incentives to drill, we're giving incentives to invest in renewables and natural gas that will take us where we need to go," House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (Calif.) told reporters before the vote.

Uh, Nancy, in case you are not aware, the source of natural gas in this country is gas WELLS. Which have to be DRILLED in order to produce said gas. The collosal ignorance of the Dem leadership regarding energy issues just takes my breath away.




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