Peak Oil Media: Our President on Energy, Kunstler on Glenn Beck last night, and GWB Does Dr. Evil

Here's your president talking about contemporary energy matters (original video link).

and we can't embed CNN's video player, so you'll have to go over there and watch Kunstler's well-done piece on Glenn Beck if you haven't seen it already:

And, yes, under the fold, if you can believe it, yes, that's your president doing his best Dr. Evil (from Austin Powers) impression. No, I am not kidding.

GWB, you make life a little too easy sometimes, you know that, dontcha?

The US Refinery Gap

So we haven't built one since 1976...

Seems that roughly 1/3 of the number of refineries in 1950 are doing over double the refining. But there is the problem of spare capacity:

Having spare capacity in case of a hurricane or whatever is probably a good thing. But should we throw all caution to the wind and toss out all those nasty regulations that supposedly prevent the construction of new ones? Or, should we just let more refining capacity go overseas?

Refineries do pose environmental risks that have real economic consequences. Shouldn't these, and the rules necessary to alleviate them, be part of the economics of siting a new plant? Why, yes.

Further, is it a given that removing all such regulatory barriers will result in new refineries being built? Not if the low to non-existent margins for refining persist:

Would you be the one to build the first new refinery if it is possible that gasoline consumption will continue to decrease due to high oil prices?

In my opinion this is a bit misleading in the sense that gasoline imports now act like spare refining capacity.
Also the Caribbean refining capacity although technically on the import side does not really count as almost all production has historically gone to the US.

What I think is missing is that as the US has become more dependent on imports its made more sense to cherry pick the oil products we need i.e gasoline at the expense of general purpose refining which produces a variety of products.

This is why I'm far more focused on gasoline imports then US oil inventories and refining margins.

Since US refining capacity has not supplied all of US needs for some time its not the primary issue. It seems to me that going forward given that Europe prefers diesel it makes more sense for them to import oil and send the excess gasoline to us. Also the cost of oil in Euro's has not increased as much vs the dollar so on the money side they effectively get the crude cheaper and can probably produce the gasoline a bit cheaper.

Thus the real problem becomes when refineries in the US and in countries that export to the US cannot get enough oil. At that point its not really too important where the oil goes. If the US imports the oil then it won't get the gasoline imports from the countries it outbid.

Once the gap develops then OECD countries as a group will have to outbid China and India bidding agianst each other in a sense does not work.

Eventually of course they will and at that point we will see gasoline available for export begin to drop.

In a sense this is saying I expect European oil demand to probably contract faster than in the US as they use and expand their existing public transport networks and eventually reach the point before us that demand drops off.
This means the US keeps getting its oil but not its gasoline imports.

So in the world of Jevons Paradox you get the interesting result that if Europe conserves faster then the US is going to suffer.

Even if total oil production decreases if the price of imported gasoline increases and lifts refining margins in the US then the US could expand refining capacity and the same for Europe assuming oil prices don't increase as rapidly and then we could together compete with China for the remaining imports. The same if European demand drops leading to less gasoline for import higher prices and thence expanded capacity to compete agianst the rest of the world.

But no matter how you slice it either we get a lot of relatively cheap imported gasoline or local gasoline prices will have to go up to allow more expansion.

It seems that at least in the US gasoline prices are relatively low vs crude so the current dynamic is that the rest of the world is "getting our oil". And you have this nasty problem in general with oil once demand has expanded its tough to contract it. For example demand increases in China at todays prices are sticky against further price increases. So by having low gasoline prices now we are less likely to get the oil/gasoline imports we need in the future.

In a sense by not being aggressive on gasoline pricing in the US right now we have upped the ante in the not to distant future. I many ways this works like a moral hazard in economics we seem to have entered into a moral hazard situation with future US gasoline imports.

Fascinating analysis, Memmel--Great job!


Perhaps your analysis can help explain why diesel in the US is so much higher than gasoline - Europe is using their buying power with the strong Euro to buy crude relatively cheaply, then export gasoline to the US as a fairly cheap byproduct while keeping the diesel for Europe (and all the diesel-powered cars). Thus, the US gasoline price is depressed versus the US diesel price, on the basis of European gasoline imports. Of course, as RR has pointed out, US low-sulfur diesel regs have also raised the price of US diesel.

In any case, insightful comment as usual.

- Brother Kornhoer

Congress is very clear on this: encourage non-fossil fuel energy. Ethanol subsidies and ethanol mandates. Tax big oil more and more. Environmentalists won't let us build new refineries and there's no reason to do so. We can import gasoline just as easily as importing crude. No reason to build new refineries; that's not our problem. Refineries are at 85% utilization as it is. This is a no-brainer.

If you mention peak oil to people, they (primarily men) will frequently say something like "oh, there's plenty of oil, we just have to drill for it" (and they really look to US protected areas as many many Saudi Arabias). And at some point you are gonna get something about needing more refineries since the fact that a US refinery hasn't been built since 1976 really resonates with them (they ignore or are unaware of all the refinery expansion that has taken place). But they not only blame high gas prices on lack of refineries, but also high oil prices. They are usually so emotional that I usually don't point out that by the laws of supply and demand, any lack of refining capacity would lower demand for oil to be refined, and thus lower oil prices, not raise them.

Ah...ah...ah...Steven, you may not have noticed that ahm ah..ah...what they call a lame duck and even when ah...ah...was ah...hawk, I didn't do squat to formulate a comprehensive energy policy. We just ah...ah...need more supply.

Don't you worry though. Once Arlen Specter finishes investigating whether the New England Patriots videotaped football signals, he and the rest of Congress will get to work on a comprehensive energy policy, then solve the Iraq issue, then Social Security, then global warming, then health insurance, then....

Isn't it obvious at this point that Iraq is an energy policy. It goes along with getting more.

Exactly right. Imagine for an instant that Saddam remained in power, with $120/barrel Bush would have no choice but negotiates and make concessions in order for Iraq to increase production! no way!

Ok, so he's a rational "perpetuate the growth paradigm" kind of Dr. Evil-doer...

Come now... We could have repositioned Saddam as a good guy. It would have taken Rush and few pinheads to help, but they could have done it. Maybe Saddam could have pretended to water-board a few Qaeda guys for us or something.

We could have had the oil. The Iranians could have been thoroughly annoyed. The Israelis thoroughly pleased. We could have saved a mountain of bucks...

And GWB would have had the last laugh... since he would have out-Cheneyed Cheney by turning Saddam.

It would have been masterful realpolitik.

But no... we had to do it the hard way.

Maybe you should have been Secretary of State (or VP) 8 years ago and things would have worked out much better. That plan actually makes sense.

Of course, a lot of people who have made rather a lot of money out of the Iraq exercise wouldn't be so well off if it had been done that way, something I've often felt isn't a coincidence...

Rebrand Sadam? Like the Nazi, er, I mean, German Scientists who build our space program? Where's an Edward Bernaise when you need him?


George Bush has a "B&B" energy policy:

Bomb Iraq to grab their oil ...

... and when that doesn't work ...

Beg the Saudis, stupid sword dance, etc...

Come on...

Solve Iraq, you solve energy.

Solve energy, and you solve Social Security AND health insurance (Since BOTH depend on an ever growing economy)

Solve energy and you can say screw it to global warming.

(But global warming will solve our Nat Gas problem since we won't have to heat our homes in the winter anymore)

Then, it'll be mining coal for another few hundred years to power our A/C year round... Not to mention power our battery powered cars, tractors and semis...

See, Shrubya Bush got 'er all planned out.

That's why the Crawford Ranch is off grid, self supporting, and well isolated from the rest of us folk... Yeee Haw!

And I read in Portland Magazine (not online) that the Bushes can expect a credit on their electric bill because of the wind turbine installation at Kennebunk estate.

Maine just passed an "Energy Corridor" bill allowing persons (they really mean corporations) to use emminent domain to acquire infrastructure. Perhaps People's Power should take over the windmill and the whole estate from those bastards. Sort of like those palaces in Iraq.

cfm in Gray, ME

The Kennedys will get the same credit in Massachusetts. And Al Gore is selling carbon credits on his mansion. I think he is growing trees in his basement. And how many jets does John Travolta own? I sure get tired of the elites telling me how to live.

Once Arlen Specter finishes investigating whether the New England Patriots videotaped football signals, he and the rest of Congress will get to work on a comprehensive energy policy

why is everyone crying about the gov't? why not start your own damn energy policy? it's not that hard. you can already see that at $125 barrel people are already starting.

exactly John. Personal plans are far more useful for conservation. The governemtn policy is all about how do we increase supply. Western government s are ideologically tied to free market economics so don't expec them to do anything useful. Markets and the profit motive will determine energy policy.

There is plenty of oil: oil from the oil sands in Canada exceeds that of Saudi Arabia; the oil from shale in Wyoming exceeds that of Saudi Arabia. And if that isn't enough, there's more coal in the US than we know what to do with, and yes, you can make gasoline from coal. It's not a question of "is there enough oil?" The question is how much do we want to spend (apparently Congress is happy with $126 oil, since Reid/Pelosi have offered no solution) and whether we have the right policies / programs (right now the environmentalists are running the programs -- which is fine with me, as long as everyone understands the associated costs and quit complaining).

There is plenty of oil:

And plenty of sunlight hits the planet, more in a week than man uses in a year I believe is the stat.

oil from the oil sands the oil from shale

Amazingly a baked potato with butter has more energy than shale.

Searching for appropriate analogies, we enter the realm of Weight Watchers. Oil shale is said to be "rich" when a ton yields 30 gallons of oil. An equal weight of granola contains three times more energy. America's "vast," "immense" deposits of shale have the energy density of a baked potato. Oil shale has one-third the energy density of Cap'n Crunch, but no one is counting on the Quaker Oats Company to become a major energy producer soon.

So - what is your point?

The question is one of rate. Production of crude oil from oil sands and oil shale will not ramp up to 74 Mb/d. There is not enough available water to convert them to synthetic crude oil. Because the EROEI is low, probably less than 1 for oil shale, one must have a large energy source to process them. The production of oil shale contaminating the Colorado River ruining a large fraction of the water supply of 5 states is not functional. Synfuel from coal also has difficulty ramping up to the level needed, is not sustainable and pollutes. You do not seem to care if we destroy our habitable environment for the sake of desperately maintaining an unsustainable lifestyle. We need to aim for renewable, sustainable and environmentally friendly to give us the best longterm chance.

Much as I would love for oil shale to save us I have to agree with this assessment.
Given the energy required to process the shale is very high, the energy return is very low.
If we compare the net loss in energy from input source to output source
e.g. renewables or nuke produce electricity to process the oil shale, wasting energy in the process, then transporting the syncrude then refining it then burning it in a gasoline engine I bet we're at a huge energy loss compared to simply putting the electricity directly to use either in electrified rail or running electric vehicles.

A paradigm shift to electric transportation is in order rather than trying to keep the ICE running.

We need TRANSPORT not Internal Combustion Engines.

I'd agree with your preferences, but it does not seem outside of the bounds of possibility that nuclear, or better, microwave technology will in the next few years allow substantial production.

The microwave technology is the method of choice, as it doesn't use and pollute the vast amounts of water other methods do, and uses less energy to extract the oil.

While amicrowave technology might "allow substantial production" the quantity and quality will have to be accounted for. I will be vastly surprised if the volume exceeds 2 million B/D, and that will most likely be heavy oil. With the impact of ELM-theory, in a few years, that will be totally insufficient, even when coupled with our conventional production. Perhaps it will be enough for the government to protect us from terrorists, whereever they might think those terrorists are, but not enough to enable BAU, as we now know it.

Does anyone have any info on the gravity of the oil trapped in the shale?

It's ironic that the cheerleaders for expanded tar/shale production want to add to GHGs that will dry up the sources of water the process is dependent on in the first place.

Rapier says tar sands could be fueled by the very oil they produce in the first place. He means just a portion of course, but the temptation is there to reduce this to its absurd conclusion. The idea of Syncrude existing simply to produce fuel to process more tar to create more fuel to process tar is very Dickensian, in the Philip K Dick sense that is.

Far out: Al Fin Energy: Peak Oil: Meet the Raytheon Oil Shale Microwave

That one passed under my radar, pardon the EM pun. Some links therein and I notice hits on previous TOD articles as well. Author has a dim view of us, too:

Peak oil doom is looking more and more like an adolescent fantasy.

You'll get yours, zitfarm!

You can use the 1976 date against them in a debate. If no refineries have been built since 1976, then why hasnt oil been steadily increasing in price since then? Why is there not a good solid correlation between gas prices and refinery spare capacity? It's only been exploding for about 5 years. You have to look at what's been happening over the last 5 years. What is different.

The iraq war.
Massive deficit spending.
Massive increases in the money supply.
Peak oil.

Try to get people to choose from these choices as a cause for high oil prices. They are all closely linked.

What is it you want the president to do? He is a human being, just like you and me - except perhaps he has the power to order the killing of lots of people and get away with it! He has his job because Americans voted him to do it - world peak oil is not his fault, and he can't fix it - get over it.

I have yet to see anybody show how we can sustainably continue BAU - indeed, the EIA oil production data suggests that, overall, the world has not had BAU growth for at least three years now - even if we are not yet at 'peak oil' we are at 'flat oil' and the price needs to rise to destroy around 2% of potential new demand each year (once we are post peak we will somehow have to destroy >6% of potential demand a year - I suspect not an easy task, especially if you are poor and hardly use any oil already.)

Said by xeroid:

What is it you want the president to do?

Stop lying.

Not invade a country to secure an oil supply.

Stop globalization.

Cut spending, be fiscally responsible with our tax dollars.

Terminate (to have never begun) the insane ethanol from corn program.

Electrify our long distance rail lines.

Get nuclear fusion power plants working.

Eliminate nuclear fission power plants.

Rapidly raise fuel efficiency of our vehicles powered by fossil fuels.

Greatly improve energy efficiency through out our society.

Aggressively support renewable, sustainable and environmentally friendly energy sources (principally wind and solar).

Aggressively support electric and hybrid vehicles.

Stop corporate welfare to profitable, unsustainable, dinosauric industries.

Implement mild population control measures: keep abortion legal, legalize death with dignity, rational family planning, eliminate the tax credit for dependent children above 2; and control & reduce immigration.

Prioritize the use of natural gas for making fertilizer by discouraging LNG and encouraging solar hot water systems with electric backup. Do not use natural gas to make biofuels.

Encourage transport of goods by waterway.

What other ideas did I miss?

President Bush had nearly 8 years and failed on every point demonstrating an utter lack of leadership.

You missed "Respect and obey the Constitution" That would have cleared up a lot.

Oh man, I've got to stop reading this stuff. It's beyond depressing...

Matt B from Oz

Thanks for the response Blue Twilight.

I should have said "what do you want the president to do about peak oil?" - since that is what TOD is about.

However, I agree with your list - now think about it.

You should have put the word 'if' in front of the list, the word 'and' between each line and concluded with 'and we will have the required BAU annual economic growth.'

IMO there is less than 100% chance that each line will occur (whoever is president), multiply by all those 'ands' and the chance is very small indeed that anything like BAU will occur - especially as many of the wishes on the list sadly won't be profitable enough to permit growth.

IMO once you have a lifestyle based on the use of fossil fuel it is very difficult/economically painful to stop, but that is what everybody individually must plan for (half the world manage to live this way already) - you live in a so called 'free' country - that means the Government does not tell you in detail how you must live or lead you, it is wrong to expect them to do so.

Anyway, here's your president talking about contemporary energy matters

Meh. Your president - don't want.

Bush has ZERO vision when it comes to the oil crisis. As many know here, more drilling will, at best, buy us a little time. At worst, it would be a huge mis-allocation of resources. Does it make sense to build refineries if we are going to have to subsist, very shortly, on less oil?

Chief Inspector Jacques Clouseau would have made a better president than this monkey. He's absolutely worthless.

I recall his answer to a question about Saudi ability to increase production: paraphrased: You can't ask someone to produce what they don't have. Well, he invaded Iraq using just that rationale.

Like Iran, Saudi has a lot of heavy oil it can't find buyers for, which is probably a large part of their spare capacity. IIRC, the majority of new refineries being built are for the processing of heavy crude. The item in today's DrumBeat highlights the price/demand difference for Iran's heavy oil. At some point, the inability to refine heavy oil will become a major liability as a large fraction of what oil remains is heavy.

we have been so fortunate to have president bush as our leader during the last 7.5 years. If you are going to do a Thelma and Louise. Go over in style, off the steepest cliff you can find, with George as the designated driver. Enjoy the trip and don't forget to take your children with you. They will hate you if you leave them behind.

Hateful rants about Bush don't help the image of the Oildrum one bit. You folks ought to just quit it.

Hateful rants about Bush don't help the image of the Oildrum one bit. You folks ought to just quit it.

Not hateful rants, just gallows humor to lighten the grim facts a bit. The last 7.5 years of official inaction on energy and disinformation on climate change have been hard on anybody with a conscience.

Not hateful rants, just gallows humor to lighten the grim facts a bit

In the vein of Gallow's Humor, Here's the famous HL Mencken quote.

I guess we have arrived at some sort of pinnacle.

. . . all the odds are on the man who is, intrinsically, the most devious and mediocre — the man who can most easily (and) adeptly disperse the notion that his mind is a virtual vacuum. The presidency tends, year by year, to go to such men.

As democracy is perfected, the office represents, more closely, the inner soul of the people. We move toward a lofty ideal. On some great and glorious day, the plain folks of the land will reach their heart's desire at last, and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron."

-- H.L. Mencken July 26, 1920, wrote in The Baltimore Sun: " .

I think you'll find peak oilers to be people that are willing to look at a subject that has troubling ramifications, one that on the surface isn't very positive, but then that's the reality of demand outpacing supply. So in that spirit, there is also a willingness to express their views of Bush as they see him, negative or positive. But maybe you have something when it comes to some of the really harsh criticism of Bush, afterall he has a point when he says, "Listen folks, when it comes to the price of oil I don't have a MAGIC WAND." Evidently as the president of the United States of America for two successive terms he was completely unable to forsee what Peak Oil might mean (although he did meet with Matthew Simmons in 2000 several times on the subject and forced an invasion of Iraq on manufactured intelligence) or move the country towards alternative energy sources instead of simply giving money away to the oil corporations. But no, he's right, he doesn't have a MAGIC WAND.

Not just Matt Simmons. Fellow Republican Roscoe Bartlett has also tried to explain the subject to him. I imagine that this was like someone trying to tutor a dimwitted and petulant prince.

"Not just Matt Simmons. Fellow Republican Roscoe Bartlett has also tried to explain the subject to him. I imagine that this was like someone trying to tutor a dimwitted and petulant prince."

I think it is a little naive to think that GWB does not understand peak oil. In fact, I have a feeling Cheney is a big doomer...

First post. Thanks to all at TOD for the intelligent, insightful discussion, humor, and analysis. Great therapy in the face of uncertain times ahead. As a city planner, what is most disconcerting to me is that our political leaders totally lack vision - i.e., the ability to read current trends and then project them into the future and ask, "On what course are we presently headed? If we look 20 years, or 50 years down the road is this a desireable outcome? If not, what outcome should be strive to achieve and what measures do we need to take to begin a course correction" Can you imagine a state of the union address in which our president asked this of the people? How about some objective, public discussion about tough issues, like energy, Mr. President? You may not have a magic wand, but I know a thousand people who would like to share with you their vision of a better future.

One of my favorite graphs:

someone help me. what was going on during the peaks on this graph? I think i understand the first one but what happened to cause the other ones?

there's a great chart on the web somewhere...I will try to find it. If I remember, those are mainly military successes or economic good news...

Peaks from left to right:

Mission Accomplished
Saddam captured
2004 election (shallow peak)

After this, Katrina starts the long slide into ignominy.

Here's a nice presentation:

Too bad it hasn't been updated since 2006.

Doesn't exactly auger well for the next president, does it?

oh my god.
that chart is SO telling. it defends Bush in a way because it shows people don't care a whit about who is in the White House as long as things in their immediate domain are going well. Talk about steep discount rates.

This is further evidence of maximum power principle and why many readers of this site are just trying to increase their own competitive advantage. Also explains why eventually we WILL open SPR on some minor dislocation, just like Caesar sacrificed some hero in the Coloseum - to appease the masses.

Are we collectively really that myopic?? A powerful graph, that.

after all he is the president of the USofA .... and seemingly having NO clue -whatsoever- as to what may come in the pipeline soon - thin air or no oil if you will b/c MOL is nigh ...

He is talking of more oil will come thus more refineries needed, in a situation were oil has been flat for three flat years, because of SOMETHING.PO is discussed in fat headlines and warnings are issued.GWB is running down the doors down in SA begging for more ... but not getting it. Refineries are running at some 80% capasity, so what's the imminent need for more of those ?

Who the heck is gonna approach this PO-thing (if nigh) if not the president, Winnie the Pooh ?

GWB is a bad president - period -

Presidential Daily Briefing .. "PEAK OIL determined to strike within continental US"

In (slight) defense of GWB, I would paraphrase what Winston Churchill said about people getting the government they deserve. On the other hand, though, this just shows how superfluous the presidency actually is. What if we did have a competent, compassionate, Rhodes Scholar of a Philosopher King in the white house? Would anything be different? I doubt it. Jimmy Carter had the right idea and he is still ridiculed for it. Having a buffoon in the white house and a caricature for a VP at least gives the comics something to joke about and us somebody else to blame.


"Hateful rants about Bush don't help the image of the Oildrum one bit. You folks ought to just quit it."


And you know someone who cares about if someone calls the President a poopy-head?

George W. Bush was a failed oilman before he became a failed president. Remember, he was gonna 'jawbone' the Saudi's to keep the price of gas least, that's what he told us, anyway. I suppose I shouldn't blame him completely. I mean, It's not like it wasn't patently obvious he was truly stupid, but this country still elected (?) appointed him, and pretty much went along with whatever he wanted. I used to think that George W Bush was the worst President in the history of this Republic, with an insidious mendacity that is excelled only by his cowardice and ingorance. But, in retrospect, I don't that's the worst of it. No, the really sick thing about what has happened over the past seven years in our country (er, excuse me...I mean Homeland...)is how the various institutions that are responsible for running our society (constitutionally mandated and otherwise) have so completely rolled over and played dead while George and his Neoconfederacy of Dunces gutted whatever was left of our Democratic Republic, to be carved into profitable slices for their rich friends while leaving the carcass of our nation rotting like roadkill along the side of a Texas highway, baking in the summer heat.
Your'e right, Hank. I shouldn't be down on George. Why, he is merely a reflection of the country writ large;
A clueless president for a clueless nation.

SubKommander Dred

but this country still elected (?) appointed him

Well, we could have had appointed Gore instead, you mean. (I think I need to visit the porcelain alter real quick.. Flush)
God bless America and give her back her magic wand!!

Bush is certainly an amateur, but I believe you should refrain from using terms such as "ass-hat" (now removed though) in articles, as it gives TOD a bad image; because in my optics, all articles on TOD represent TOD itself. I.e., visitors might suspect it is the line of the entire editorial staff.

Anyway, this is my first post in here, and I would like to praise TOD for being the wonderful source of knowledge that it is. Much appreciated, please keep on the good work.

Best wishes from Denmark.

In full agreement, Jespar. Civility is still very much alive, even in much of mainstream. And I've been thrilled thus far with the replies to my few and generally lay queries.

Regards, Matt B from Oz

Civility is still very much alive, even in much of mainstream.

on the Senate floor Cheney offered some crass advice.
"Fuck yourself," said the man who is a heartbeat from the presidency.

(The Nixon tapes was filled with a lack of Civility and this bit of fiction smacks of Nixon's choice of descriptive modifyers)

Saying "fuck yourself" in a private conversation that is accidently overheard, is somewhat different than putting "fuck yourself" intentionally into the public domain via an article, a bumper sticker, etc. Walk five miles into a forest and holler "fire." Very bad if there is no fire. But, worse if you holler "fire" in a crowded theater. But, that is just my opinion and it would not surprise me in the least if you believe that both are equal.

Glenn Beck sounds like he hangs out at TOD-I thought he was going to ask Kunstler to autograph his book (maybe he did). Peak Oil is definitely becoming more mainstream (quickly).

How much does building a parking lot for 100 cars cost?
One of the quickest wedges we can get cracking at would be to build a 100 car parking lot at every exit 20 miles surrounding an urban center. Let people form their own car pools and own low cost "public" transport networks.
If Dailykos and MoveOn can raise 000's and millions for obscure politcians, surely TOD has the credibility now to raise the issue with a Bloomberg or Buffet. Instead of naming the new cardiac or Cancer wing of a hospital, a minor Hedgie could slap his name around town for 25K to 100K per parking lot.

Meanwhile How you can stem Gas wasting Traffic Jams :

In the UK we have a lot of park and ride schemes - large parking lots on all the major approach roads to cities, and a fast and frequent bus service in from there.
On a recent day trip to Oxford I just left my car there, and it was much more convenient to catch the bus in and walk around the centre than to fight for parking spaces.

(I don't know if I should be thank'n ya'll for waiting for me to post this or cursing ya'll for being slackers)

OPEC will increase oil supply out of respect for Bush
Bush said today that he would bring down gasoline prices by creating enough political good will with oil-producing nations that they would increase their supply of crude. “I would work with our friends in OPEC to convince them to open up the spigot, to increase the supply. Use the capital that my administration will earn, with the Kuwaitis or the Saudis, and convince them to open up the spigot.” Implicit in his comments was a criticism of the Clinton administration as failing to take advantage of the good will that the US built with Kuwait and Saudi Arabia during the Persian Gulf war in 1991. Also implicit was that as the son of the president who built the coalition that drove the Iraqis out of Kuwait, Mr. Bush would be able to establish ties on a personal level that would persuade oil-producing nations that they owed the US something in return.

Source: Katherine Q. Seelye, NY Times Jun 28, 2000

He is just one man.
Democrat held house and senate and all committees held by same.
I didn't vote for one of them, and have voted since , in country Viet Nam.

look inward , the problems is that person in the mirror.

cut your energy usage in half, and ask others to do that same.


to heck with all the cry babies,
buck up and do the right thing.

The oil is flowing, it is flowing well.
The only problems are cost.
It could be far worse, count your blessing.


He is just one man.

And your point?

Democrat held house and senate and all committees held by same.

And? Same can be said for the Republicans.

Your Point?

cut your energy usage in half, and ask others to do that same.

I spent the winter at 45 deg as the indoor temp. Exactly how am I to follow your 'advice'?


*yawn* The LP can't be bothered to set up a court watching program to keep at least one branch of the government on the straight and narrow.

The President seems to feel that it is very significant that high oil prices are like a tax. He gives are long look after saying that. That look is not the deer in the headlights look, but a taxes are bad look.

The funny thing is how little like a tax the prices are. It is more a great whooshing sound of money leaving the country. It is the sound of arms smuggled across the unsecured borders of Iraq and Afganistan. It is not at all like a tax but rather the tribute payed by a surrender monkey who couldn't fight for CAFE standards and sabotaged California when it tried to fight.


In this particular interview, President Bush did not come across as an "energy asshat." Explore more, drill more, change your habits. That's certainly much better than Clinton's "it's the fault of the energy speculators and the Saudi's" solution to cut the gas tax which would only encourage more oil consumption.

I think the editors here at TOD are showing their true political colors.

Has there been any politician running for president that even mentioned Peak Oil and talked about the very serious changes & sacrifices we need to make in order to deal with it?

President Bush is not the only energy idiot, but this interview was too precious not to present to everyone.

In fact, peak oil is NOT a partisan all. Remember, we push Roscoe Bartlett's agenda here all the time, he's a Republican Member of Congress from Maryland. Some of our staff lean to the left, some of our staff lean to the right. So your generalizations are just plain wrong. If you want to blame anyone, blame me.

It's about leadership, which this president has provided very little of, in my humble opinion.

Has there been anyone else who has stepped up? Roscoe Bartlett, Udall, a few others. We support them as much as we can.

My feeling about Pres Bush is that he has the opportunity to tell Americans what they don't want to hear as he is not seeking reelection. That might make it easier for our politicians in Europe to at least discuss the issues around energy. Perhaps that's a bit naive.

Unless I missed something President Bush spoke about what to do about high oil price but did not mention peak oil. He said

The best thing we can do is increase supply... and build more refineries.

... in order for there to be a substantial change, either consumers have to change their habits, which we are encouraging through alternative types of vehicles, or there has to be an increase in supply. And both of them have to go hand in hand in order to achieve, you know, less dependence on this kind of very unsettled oil market.

What are those alternative vehicles, flex fuel that still get poor fuel economy running on gasoline or ethanol? Vehicles like the Toyota RAV-4 EV were killed by the automobile manufactures and oil companies. He did nothing to stop it. He is saying to Americans, continue life as usual except make a few minor adjustments because he is going to get us all of the crude oil we want. He is blaming the high price on an unsettled oil market as if it is a temporary thing. His comments reveal no awareness of future shortages nor of the pervasive dependence of our society on crude oil. Increasing supply does not work on the falling edge of global peak oil. His energy policy is a myopic business as usual strategy.

The energy policies of all three principal U.S. presidential candidates are woefully inadequate to deal with peak oil. Criticizing Bush's policy is not equivalent to endorsing the policies of the others. There is no leadership in sight.

I think the editors here at TOD are showing their true political colors.

I don't think ANY of the 'modern Presidents' would pass muster. The Carter Doctrine would get Prez Carter an asshat award from someone I'm sure.
(two or 3 drumbeats ago there was the 'leadership is psychcotic' links. I'm guessing that 'asshattery' and psychopaths go hand in hand. Get rid of the psychopaths in government - then I'd consider comments are tied to 'political color'. Till then - I'm going with profound dissapointment expressed as identifying 'em as asshats. )

Has there been any politician running for president that even mentioned Peak Oil and talked about the very serious changes & sacrifices we need to make in order to deal with it?

The closest would have been Jimmy Carter.

The whole peaceful atom/military-industrial-congressional-complex discussions might be able to be considered.

Well, but he didn't just say "drill more, explore more, change your habits". He focused on the number of refineries (neglecting to mention the increase in capacity due to upgrades) which, given his background, tells me that this is just a diversionary tactic -- a la, "if the environmentalists would just get out of the way...".

Has there been any politician running for president that even mentioned Peak Oil and talked about the very serious changes & sacrifices we need to make in order to deal with it?


I think they called him Jimmy.

Jimmy Carter and his famous sweater by the fire side speech.

Remember? Remember? Oh heck, forgetting makes the argument sound better.
(Click the image to enlarge)
Mother Nature doesn't care which way the monkeys lean.
Left. Right. Don't matter. They all fall down (out of their "high" tech trees).

It is painful to watch this microcepahalic incompetent president who has botched and wasted the last 7 years and who bears a huge share of the blame for the run up in prices. He single handedly killed the dollar with his gigantic deficits: 5 trillion $ when he took office and 9 trillion $ now. His invasion of Iraq to secure more supply was an unmitigated financial and military disaster. The dollar has lost almost 50% vs the euro under his tenure and that of course is the biggest reason for the magnitude of the jump since oil is paid in dollars not euros. The refinery comment is utter foolishness. If we had needed refineries, the refiners would have built them. It simply wasn't a good business decision to build refineries if the amount of crude available to fill them would be dropping year after year. I own 5 refiners in my investment portfolio and their share prices are down 40 to 80% in the past year. Take a look at Western Refining(WNR), trading at $60 a year ago and now at $8. They are running at only 80 to 85% capacity and not making money. Does that sound like we need new refineries?!! This president and all of the candidates for his job don't have an inkling of what Peak Oil means and what to do about it. The US will just continue to lurch back and forth between panic and complacency and every so called solution will just be the source of more problems. Jimmy Carter foresaw this decades ago and was laughed out of office. I guess we know who will get the last laugh.

Glenn Beck - MAKING SENSE??? For those of you not in the USA, Glenn Beck is a rightwing blowhard who makes George W Bush look like a towering intellect. This is one of the very few times I've ever seen Beck not bring close and vital attention to his cranio-rectal inversion disorder. Stunning. I'm simply amazed. Wow. Looking at Kunstler, his face seemed very much like "I need to be nice to this idiot", but keeping his cool was simple: Beck just softballed him. amazing. This DEFINITELY ties in with the recent post on Green Nationalism. (I'll cross post this there, as I think these two things are directly linked.)