Thursday, August 7, 2008

I want one

I really liked this piece from the LA Times on the whole stupid flap.
It's worth considering why this was a story at all. No one would argue that proper tire inflation is not a good thing, though some people nonetheless managed (McCain's camp eventually backtracked a bit on the tire gauge critique). Further, no serious person believes offshore drilling will significantly affect either supply or price: Offshore drilling on the Outer Continental Shelf "would not have a significant impact on domestic crude oil and natural gas production or prices before 2030," according to the government's Energy Information Administration.

The tire gauge vs. offshore drilling debate frames a competition of world views. On one side are those who believe
in conservation as a practical matter and, perhaps, a matter of "personal virtue," per Vice President Dick Cheney. On the other are those who find the tire inflation message an insufficiently grand and inspiring idea, weak-wristed, retreatist. Offshore drilling has the romance of heavy industry, with hard-hatted men named "Deke" going after what America needs. What, after all, is more macho: an oil derrick or a tire gauge?

The offshore drilling position also enjoys the stupendous advantage of asking nothing from consumers.

And here's the DOE info. Essentially, don't expect a significant impact until 2030, and even that assumes that more exists than has been found and that it is economically recoverable - assumptions the report is careful to point out are very optimistic.

As for the stupid tire gauges? I want one. (personally - it sounds like free advertising for the obama campaign, if you ask me)

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