Archive for July, 2008

Bush says “I told you so,” but…

Thursday, July 17th, 2008

Energy policy – Bush says “I told you so,” but what are the two conditions for being able to say that? 1. You have to put out a set of recommendations. Check, Bush put out an energy policy very early in his first term.  2. You have to be able to say that your advice was not followed. D’oh!

Energy Secretary Samuel Bodman said, as part of an online interactive forum on March 9, 2005, “During his second week in office, the President put together a task force to address America’s energy challenges… And over the past four years, we have implemented 95 percent of those recommendations.” [emphasis added]

Bill O’Reilly is (gulp!) correct! Karl Rove claimed on O’Reilly’s program that:

“This president and this administration put more into alternative energy research than any administration in history by a significant factor.

O’Reilly [correctly] questioned Rove’s assertion, saying “maybe that’s true and maybe it isn’t.”

No, Rove’s assertion is not correct.

Since 1980, federal spending on energy research has declined, and since the mid-1990s, “R&D spending has been stagnant for renewable energy and energy efficiency.”

Bush correctly asserted in his 2006 State of the Union Address that America was addicted to oil. Unfortunately, he never followed that up by doing anything effective about it. According to the White House, the best energy policy was simply to trust the market (PDF). BTW, John McCain agrees with that idea.

PollLos Angeles Times/Bloomberg Poll. June 19-23, 2008. N=1,233 adults nationwide. MoE ± 3.

“Has the recent rise in gas and oil prices caused you or your family any financial hardship, or not?”

Yes No Unsure
% % %

6/19-23/08

70 29 1

“Who do you think, if anyone, is to blame for the rising fuel prices: the oil companies that are making large profits, or commodities speculators, or turmoil in the Middle East, or OPEC and other foreign producers of oil, or the Bush administration, or the demand for more oil from countries such as China, or is there some other person or group that you blame for the rising fuel prices?” Up to two responses accepted.

%

Bush administration

29

Oil companies

25

Commodities speculators

13

Countries such as China

11

Foreign producers

9

Middle East turmoil

8

Other

4

No one (vol.)

1

Unsure

21

“Do you think the Bush administration has taken sufficient steps to control rising oil and gas prices and ease its affect on American families, or has the Bush administration not done enough?”

Taken
Sufficient
Steps
Not Done
Enough
Unsure
% % %

6/19-23/08

10 81 9