Yesterday, in a 237-187 vote, the House of Representatives approved approved a chiefly Republican-backed plan to authorize the Keystone XL pipeline, expand drilling offshore and open the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to exploration.
The "idea" is that drilling will reduce the price of gas and heating oil for American consumers. However, because I love Indecision readers, I made the above graph using data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration to illustrate why this stupidity can't possibly be the underlying motivation for this legislation. The graph tracks vehicle gasoline prices (taxes included) across several countries and lo and behold, spikes and declines happen at the same time, at roughly the same magnitude, in every surveyed nation. Almost as if there's some underlying factor, independent of each country's policy that determines price changes: the global price of sweet, beautiful crude.
Since the price of oil is set on global commodity markets, increasing the supply of Alaskan crude will impact prices in France as much as it will in the United States. And do we really want to despoil the American environment in order to lower French energy prices, when their country is already so efficiently powered by condescension and loathing (not to mention nuclear fission)? No, we do not.
So why are we doing this? Possibly, because there once was a man from Alaska/his colleagues wanted to shut him up faster…
Rep. Don Young (R-Alaska) on Wednesday touted drilling in ANWR through poetry.
"Old Mother Hubbard went to the cupboard to fetch a barrel of oil. Lo and behold none was there, lack of action by this Congress beware," Young recited. "ANWR still lays bare. Time to drill for the people of America."
But that doesn't seem quite right either. The real concern is the need to keep a constant stream of oil running through the Alaskan pipeline, in order to feed the weirdest congressional fetish since Senator David Vitter was "Pampered…"
[Republican of Texas Louie] Gohmert launched into a lecture during a meeting of the House Natural Resources committee meeting last week about the need to protect the poor caribou. But here's the catch — the evil force against which he wants to defend the creatures is the halting of the flow of oil through the pipeline. That, he says, would be akin to throwing cold water on what sounds like a randy spring-break party happening around Alaska's caribou population.
It seems that Gohmert is also something of an expert on animal husbandry. Here's his theory: The caribou very much enjoy the warmth the pipeline radiates. "So when they want to go on a date, they invite each other to head over to the pipeline," he informed his colleagues. It's apparently the equivalent of being wined and dined. And that has resulted in a tenfold caribou population boom, he concluded.
"So my real concern now… if oil stops running through the pipeline… do we need a study to see how adversely the caribou would be affected if that warm oil ever quit flowing?" he asked.
Poor Gohmert. Forget man-on-dog and man-on-Bayer, what will happen to man-on-caribou crushes in a Santorum administration?
Tags: Alaska, Animals, Conservatives, Don Young, Energy & Oil, Environment, House of Representatives, Louie Gohmert, Poetry, Republicans