International Energy Dependence Vs. National Energy Independence

President Obama and Governor Palin both gave interviews on Tuesday where they both discussed how to address rising gas prices. Interestingly, they both agreed– oil supplies need to be increased. In local interviews with a Virginia and a Detroit television station, President Obama called for increased supplies…from Saudi Arabia:

As the high cost of gasoline takes a toll on politics and pocket books, President Barack Obama says he is calling on major oil producers such as Saudi Arabia to increase their oil supplies to help stabilize prices, warning starkly that lack of relief would harm the global economy.

“We are in a lot of conversations with the major oil producers like Saudi Arabia to let them know that it’s not going to be good for them if our economy is hobbled because of high oil prices,” Obama told a Detroit TV station.


In interviews Tuesday with WXYZ in Detroit and in WTKR in Hampton Roads, Va., Obama said the message to major oil producers like Saudi Arabia is that an economy that buckles because of high oil prices won’t grow and won’t be good for them or for the U.S.


Obama said he has stressed the self-interest of oil producing nations, arguing that “if we’re not growing, they’re not going to be making money either.

“And so they need to increase supplies,” he told WTKR.

Of course, such a foreign-centric energy policy is nothing new for President Obama. He authorized billions of dollars for drilling in Brazil and has stated that he wants America to one of Brazil’s best customers. He has also lent nearly $3 billion to Colombia for oil refineries. He may be saying, “drill, baby, drill”, but not in English.

While he has called for increased supplies from the Middle East and has supported energy development in South America, he has been antagonistic to increasing supplies and developing energy from America. This includes moratoriums on offshore drilling and EPA over regulation, as Governor Palin discussed with Greta van Susteren on Tuesday:

I never would have done what President Obama did and that’s engage in that moratorium after the tragedy in the Gulf with the spill. He should have been more sensible in figuring out what the problem was, what the solution was to the gulf spill but not take it out on the rest of the country and prohibit drilling onshore and offshore is what he did. 97% of our offshore area locked up after that and there still is a quasi-moratorium because the EPA is making it virtually impossible for drillers to be out there extracting responsibly the God-given resources that we have domestically. 

So that’s certainly a difference that I would have had with President Obama had I been in that chair. I would have said, no, we’re going to allow the domestic drilling and we’re not going to subsidize Brazil or other foreign countries and ramp up production in those countries as we promise that we’ll be their best customer if only they’ll drill more. No, I would concentrate on the domestic drilling here.

Of course, Governor Palin is right. Energy policy must be both present and future focused. That is why energy independence is key. It protects America’s economy, strengthens America monetarily, and shields America’s national security. When instability in the Middle East occurs, America would be better prepared to handle the effects of this unrest. Additionally, it would provide jobs that strengthen the American economy. Also, as Governor Palin pointed out later in that discussion, the devalued dollar also affects the increase in energy prices. Something that Governor Palin has sounded the warning bell on as early as October of 2009, when she discussed the interrelatedness of the value of the dollar, energy independence, and the national debt.

A recent regulatory decision by the EPA caused Shell to cancel plans to drill in the Arctic. Heritage reports that the EPA reached this decision because Shell did not properly account for the emissions given off by needed ice breaking vessels. This comes as a bit of a shock, as the alarmist, chicken little EPA would usually have us to believe that global warming has cause all Arctic ice to melt, and therefore, Shell would have no need for such a vessel to assist in their energy development processes.

Alaska is not the only state and the Gulf is not the only region to be affected by President Obama’s policies. His moratorium has affected the people of Virginia and the East Coast as well. A bill has been proposed to lift the moratorium on offshore drilling off of the Virginia Coast. Two of the sponsors of this bill represent the coastal area of Hampton Roads, VA, where President Obama did one of these local interviews where he discussed energy policy. I’m sure they would appreciate a moratorium to be lifted for the economic benefit of their town and the energy security of America.

H/T Doug Powers

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