Thursday, May 01, 2008

In the news: gas tax holiday plan makes silly season sillier

Even though I'm a pinko treehugging liberal pantywaist, like many others of my kind, I've had a kind of soft spot for John McCain. Even though we'd prefer to see a democrat in the White House, we secretly think to ourselves that he'd be a huge improvement over the current administration, that he's somehow above the kind of right-wing pandering that was, at least until the 2006 mid-terms, the Republican's ace in the hole. Well, if there were a number of thinking people out there that might have been potential McCain democrats, that number should be significantly lower in light of his proposed federal gas-tax holiday.

There are all kinds of reasons why it's lame in terms of economic policy and absolutely moronic in terms of energy policy. Tom Friedman explained them well in his NYT piece yesterday. Snip:
[W]e borrow money from China and ship it to Saudi Arabia and take a little cut for ourselves as it goes through our gas tanks. What a way to build our country. No, no, no, we’ll just get the money by taxing Big Oil, says Mrs. Clinton. Even if you could do that, what a terrible way to spend precious tax dollars — burning it up on the way to the beach rather than on innovation?

The McCain-Clinton gas holiday proposal is a perfect example of what energy expert Peter Schwartz of Global Business Network describes as the true American energy policy today: “Maximize demand, minimize supply and buy the rest from the people who hate us the most.”

I'm not surprised that Hillary Clinton would get on board with this (remember how her husband drew down the Strategic Petroleum Reserve back in 2000 when oil was going for $40 a barrel?), but somehow I expected better from McCain. Will Obama be able to explain to ordinary Americans why saving them maybe $50 on gas is such a stoopid idea?


mdmhvonpa said...

As a Thompson (Jacksonian) Conservative, McCain's only salvation in my eyes is Reagan's 1st Commandment: Thou shalt not speak ill of another Republican.

GAH! As a Tree-Hugging Right Winger (Hey, you grow up on a farm, you know how to be a steward of the land [dustbowl anyone?]), I know that we need to find a better transportation fuel and corn ethanol is no friend ... the Manhattan Project Model will work here and that will take a SHITLOAD of $$$$. Drill the bajeepers out of ANWAR and every other drop of oil till we can solve this. If we have really hit peak oil, then the Environment has little to fear from this approach.

Stephen said...

someone somewhere suggested that rather than a gas tax holiday, we switch to a four-day work week, t least for the summer, and all those who were able to stay away from work on that day also pledge not to drive. keep cars off the road for one day a week. some people (like me)don't have jobs they can do from home, so we'd not all be able to take advantage, but i think it's a great idea. maybe idealistic, but nothing wrong with that.