The latest atrocity being pushed by John McCain and the Republicans is that we need to boost oil production by drilling off the gulf shore shore and in the Alaskan National Wildlife Arctic Refuge (ANWAR).
Virtually every reason they give for this is, at best - completely baseless; and, at worst - a total lie.
The fact is that the Republicans’ stance on energy and oil has been abysmal and that McCain has no plan whatsoever to offer other than to keep doing what Bush is doing - subsidizing oil companies like Exxon-Mobil who made $8 billion per year when Bush took office, but who now make over $40 billion per year giving them the largest yearly corporate profit in the history of planet Earth.
We also have no reason to need it. The oil companies are sitting on 68 million acres of leased drilling land in the United States and purposely NOT drilling on it. They are hoarding at our expense and their republican backed puppets are floating other abominations now.
Misrepresentation #1 - Increasing offshore drilling will help bring down the cost of oil quickly.
Fact - Increasing offshore may produce a little more oil by the year 2025 or so, but the amount will be only a slight fraction of the nation’s total output. Republicans are basing this on the theory that we can drill our way out of the problem.
This is truly the most ludicrous of all their arguments. The United States has two percent of the world’s oil, but use 25 percent. Increasing that to 2.02 percent in 20 years will not make up the difference. If it was a difference maker, why won't they drill on the already secured 68 million acres they're sitting on? Because we're already refining oil at our full capacity. More oil won't get us more gasoline or lower prices.
Misrepresentation #2 - Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in 2005 did no damage to the environment from offshore oil platforms. McCain said, “They’re safe enough.”
Fact - Hurricanes Katrina and Rita forced 700,000 gallons of oil to spill during the hurricanes. The chance of further disasters not related to weather also factor into a possible catastrophic disaster to not only the ecology, but also the gulf states’ industries along the coast, such as the seafood industry and tourism on the beaches.
Misrepresentation #3 (actually a blatant lie) - “China is drilling off the coast of Florida...” (optional aside - “with the help of Cuba.”)
Fact - It’s a LIE. This rumor has been alleged by Vice-President Dick Cheney, Republican Congressmen John Boehner and Roy Blount, and media personalties Michelle Bachman and George Will over the past week. Dick Cheney actually apologized and corrected himself the day after this assertion, but it has a life that lives on thanks to Bachman and friends at the Republican Headquarters known as “Fox News.” It simply happens to be a fabrication.
Misrepresentation #4 (and the most fanciful of all) - ANWAR helps caribou in Alaska because the pipeline is warm. One Republican congresswoman from Minnesota even said the caribou will have coffee klatches with such a warm pipeline! I’m not making that up.
Fact - This is the silliest one yet. Think about it a second - the animals native to Alaska... are freezing??? Wouldn’t they have moved or become extinct long ago if they needed more warmth? And oh, by the way, why would we be HEATING the oil to such a degree that it will make the outside of the pipes warm? Is there some reason we’d need to do that? Would we need portable heaters along the pipeline to keep it warm the entire length? If not, then why has no one ever proposed simply putting in heaters FOR THE CARIBOU?
The simple truth is that the wealthiest corporations in the history of civilization, who are already being subsidized with additional tax dollars paid by hard-working Americans, want more. The Republicans are just the people who will rob the bottom 99 percent to make it happen.