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Columns

June 10, 2008

On the Right Side: Don't fault companies for oil crisis

It is unbelievable how blind these environmental radicals are, along with their leftist liberals in Congress and the anti-capitalism crowd, and how willing they all are to place the blame for the current energy crisis on everyone else when the real responsibility and resulting consequences rest squarely on their shoulders.

Let me see if I can pull you, kicking and screaming, into the world of reality for just a short time while I address rational people, and you can then go put your heads back in the sand.

Unless you can offer rational, workable solutions rather than just complain and unless you can talk about the salient issues in an intelligent fashion, then you don't deserve to be part of the discussion.

Like it or not, our economy is fueled by oil, coal and natural gas, of which there are immense reserves available for extraction. It has been this way for the last 150 years. You can't simply wave a magic wand and make this fact disappear.

Therefore, the only rational solution is to provide a steady and stable domestic supply of these resources until other alternative energy sources and technologies are available as economical substitutes.

First of all, the problem is not the oil companies' fault. Their return on investment to stockholders is totally in line or less than the returns of other industries, and more than 30 government agency reports verify that the pricing of gasoline is caused by legitimate market forces.

It is you obstructionists who have prevented the necessary drilling in onshore and offshore areas abundant with oil and gas. You have also prevented the building of refineries so that an adequate supply of gasoline and other energy products can bring prices down rather than having to import supplies at much higher prices.

The last refinery built in the U.S. was in 1976. We have gone from 324 refineries processing 18.6 million barrels a day down to 155 refineries with a maximum capacity of 16.6 million barrels a day, for a difference of 2 million barrels daily.

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