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Governor Palin and Forward Focused Leadership–Part I

by Whitney Pitcher

President Reagan once said, ” to grasp and hold a vision–that is the very essence of successful leadership”. One of the keys to leadership is being forward focused. This involves seeing beyond the next release of one’s polling data, seeing beyond the next budget, and beyond the next election. It involves seeing the possible barriers and knowing how to address them based upon the successes of the past while also seeking for ways to address problems in the future. However, so often politicians make decisions based upon their own selfish myopic vision or a vision based upon yet to be proven ideas. True leadership involves making decisions in light of what’s best for both the present and the future. When we look in particular at energy, we can certainly see that Governor Palin has exhibited forward focused leadership.

We aren’t energy independent, and energy prices are high because politicians have not had the political will to drill in America, which would both make us more independent and help increase the worldwide oil supply so that it is not so dependent on unstable countries. A forward focused politician like Governor Palin understand this very well. To address an energy price crisis, you must prepared for the crisis. You can’t be floundering looking for companies and speculators to demonize, nor be unable to offer true solutions. One major way to combat a potential crisis is essentially to prevent it and/or mitigate its effects. It is simple supply and demand economics, as Governor Palin discussed last night. If supplies are decreased and demand is held steady or increased, prices are going to go up. Unrest in oil rich countries like Libya have decreased supplies, which has influenced President Obama to call for the Saudis to ramp up their production. Additionally, he has praised and funded drilling in Brazil in hopes of helping America to be one of Brazil’s “best customers”. Neither of those supposed solutions bring America any closer to energy independence, nor are they the result of a forward focused plan.

Of course, the better option is to have been drilling here in America which would add to the supply of oil internationally in addition to adding to the economic, monetary, and the national security strength nationally. Governor Palin, of course, has been a strong and longtime proponent of drilling in places like ANWR. In 1996, President Clinton vetoed a bill that would have allowed drilling in ANWR. Liberals often poo poo such notions as drilling because it would supposedly take ten years for oil to be produced. Of course, it has now been fifteen years since President Clinton’s veto. Oil producers in Alaska could have been developing for at least five years by now, which recent estimated would result in oil production at a minimum of around a half million barrels per day.

Yesterday marked the one year anniversary since President Obama put a moratorium on offshore drilling following the Gulf oil spill. Although he has lifted the moratorium, he has been very slow in issuing permits, and the EPA, an additional regulatory arm of the Obama administration, has been antagonistic to offshore drilling. Governor Palin also has been very critical of President Obama’s offshore drilling moratorium. In fact, in response to a question on what she would do to help ease oil prices, she mentioned that she would not have instituted the drilling moratorium:

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.

[…]

Now the President is engaged now in what he wants to get to the bottom of with whether it be collusion, or price fixing, or speculators, what else is driving up the cost. Well he can look at other states like Alaska. We already did a study to find out was it collusion? Was it speculators? What was driving up the last big spike in gas prices? And we found that no, more than anything it is a supply-and-demand, a very basic economic principle, supply-and-demand.

These are not the words of a woman who is merely engaging in armchair politicking. Governor Palin was forward focused during her tenure a Governor. In addition to being a strong proponent of expanding energy development to help make America more energy independent through drilling for oil, she also acted to move development of natural gas forward through the development of a pipeline that would bring natural gas from Alaska to the Lower 48. As Governor, she moved a natural gas pipeline project further than any of her predecessors. A New York Times hit piece in March tried to attack AGIA, but all of the evidence points to AGIA as being right on target:

The New York Times also questions the progress of Governor Palin’s natural gas pipeline project–the Alaska’s Gasline Inducement Act (AGIA)–which will bring natural gas from the North Slope of Alaska through Canada to the Lower 48 as an additional means of achieving energy independence. Governor Palin’s pipeline project was done in a transparent free-market friendly manner with proposals available for public consumption— a far cry from the behind-closed-doors pipeline discussion with oil companies that were commonplace and unsuccessful in previous administrations. The New York Times argues that neither gas suppliers nor federal permits had been obtained for the project.

However, at the end of the first open season for bidding by gas suppliers this past summer, there were “several major players” who had submitted bids. Additionally, the pipeline company TransCanada and oil company ExxonMobil, both partners on AGIA-backed pipeline project, have had discussions with BP-ConocoPhilips to work together on the project. Additionally, the permitting process with both American and Canadian regulatory agencies has made “significant progress,” and the progress is right on track with time projections.

Following one of the early successes of this project nearly two years ago, Governor Palin was interviewed by Matt Lauer, where he questioned the need for the pipeline as natural gas prices were low at the time.Governor Palin called such an idea “short sighted” (see especially at the 2:15 mark and following):

Governor Palin is right about the need to make America energy independent when it comes to both oil and natural gas. She also was right to note the short sighted nature of evaluating future energy development entirely upon current prices. The most recent natural gas futures were at $4.58 per MMBtu (million British thermal units). When Governor Palin was interviewed in June of 2009, natural gas futures were at $3.56 per MMbtu. Prices have increased. Governor Palin was right to note that it would have been short sighted not to proceed when natural gas prices were low. As you can see in this chart here, natural gas prices are volatile, just as oil prices are. What is the best way to deal with both? Ensure that there are sufficient supplies produced in the United States. Increased domestic supplies soften the blow when instability in other energy producing nations affect the world energy market. Additionally, such efforts would provide jobs and protect America’s national security.

Critics may claim that someone who is forward focused on energy would be looking to green energy initiatives as President Obama has focused on green energy in his last three weekly addresses and in much of attempt to deal with the current high energy prices. Governor Palin has been rightly critical on the overemphasis of such initiatives, pointing to the failure of green energy in Spain that has crippled employment and contributed to their massive debt problem. Meanwhile, President Obama is pushing for electric cars that have proven to have major problems and are mostly re-charged on energy derived from fossil fuels like coal. Governor Palin recognizes that in the desire for energy independence, knowing what doesn’t work is just as important as knowing what does.

Part of leadership involves solving problems, but another part of leadership involves having the foresight to both prevent problems from happening in the first place and mitigate the effects when there are problems. This is why Governor Palin warned that not seeking energy independence would result in the federal government being tempted to tap into our strategic petroleum reserves. That is why Governor Palin has been a very vocal proponent for expanding offshore drilling and drilling on land in the United States. That is why she championed the natural gas pipeline to bring Alaska’s abundant natural gas to the Lower 48. That is why she has the justified skepticism with the social engineering disguised as “green energy” focus of the Obama administration. Governor Palin has shown that she has the leadership skills to be both a problem solver and a problem preventer.

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International Energy Dependence Vs. National Energy Independence

by Whitney Pitcher

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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Governor Palin Says President Obama Is “Scary Wrong” on Oil

by Whitney Pitcher

Earlier tonight, Governor Palin tweeted a link to an Investors’ Business Daily article highlighting how Americans overwhelmingly support drilling in ANWR and off shore in addition to tapping into shale reserves in the West:

Obama’s so wrong on energy/scary wrong on oil;AK alone w/billions bbls & trillions cu ft of nat gas.(Other states, too) http://bit.ly/hX5AzT

“Scary wrong” is indeed the way to characterize the Obama administration’s energy policy. On Friday, CNSNews spoke with Interior Secretary Ken Salazar to ask him why the administration wasn’t considering drilling in the Arctic with gas prices so high:

Yep, you heard that right. Using the logic of Vice President “We have to spend money to keep from going bankrupt” Biden, Salazar said that we should not drill in the Arctic because it won’t make us energy independent, as if inaction will make us energy independent. The only action the Obama administration is willing to take is to discuss tapping into our Strategic Petroleum Reserves.

On Saturday, I wrote that Senate Democrats were urging the Obama administration to tap into these reserves, but at the time, the administration felt that this was a short sighted option. What a difference a day makes, as on Sunday, White House Chief of Staff William M, Daley said that this was a measure that the Obama administration was now considering. As I referenced in my post on Saturday, a few sentences from Governor Palin’s RNC speech ring especially as true today as they did two and half years ago:

When a hurricane strikes in the Gulf of Mexico, this country should not be so dependent on imported oil that we are forced to draw from our Strategic Petroleum Reserve.

Our opponents say, again and again, that drilling will not solve all of America’s energy problems — as if we all didn’t know that already.

But the fact that drilling won’t solve every problem is no excuse to do nothing at all.

The Obama administration has us so dependent on foreign sources of energy that drawing from our Strategic Petroleum Reserves has become a possibility. Their idea of energy independence has been to make America independent of energy. After all, they don’t wish to drill in the Arctic, the Gulf, the Atlantic, or Pacific. Their one granted lease in the Gulf was given to enable a company to continue a project following the Gulf oil spill, not to allow new drilling to begin. Mining for coal, which would likely power the re-charging of Obama’s favorite electric vehicle, has been hindered by Obama administration EPA regulations.

As Governor Palin mentioned in her tweet, Alaska has billions of barrels of oil and trillions of cubic feet of natural gas. The Natural Petroleum Reserve in Alaska alone is estimated to have 53 trillion cubic feet of natural gas. The Arctic is estimated to have 90 billion barrels of oil and 1. 67 quadrillion (1,670 trillion) cubic feet of natural gas. For some perspective, that is 1,670,000,000,000,000 cubic feet of natural gas. Those kinds of numbers make even Obama’s deficit numbers seem small! She also mentioned that other states have large amounts of resources as well. For example, the Green River formation in Colorado, Wyoming, and Utah is estimated to have 1.5 trillion barrels of oil–6 times as much as Saudi Arabia. There are 3-4.3 billion barrels of oil in the Bakken formation in North Dakota and Montana. Those a just a few examples of the abundance of God-given resources.

Americans are right to supporting drilling here in America. With soaring gas prices and instability in the Middle East and parts of northern Africa, where much of our oil comes from, it only seems practical to tap into our own resources. Additionally, increased energy production would provide jobs. It is estimated that tapping into resources currently off limits would add more than half a million jobs and also bring in $150 billion in government revenue, which liberals love, by 2025. Energy independence, more jobs, and stronger national security. How’s that for winning the future?

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Governor Palin Is Right on Energy…Again

by Whitney Pitcher

Last fall, Stacy and I put together a post highlighting several of the economic and national security problems have emerged since Barack Obama became president, as Governor Palin warned in her 2008 RNC speech. With the current chaos in the Middle East and northern Africa and with President Obama’s perpetual aversion to drilling for oil in America, more of Governor Palin’s warnings from her 2008 RNC speech are sadly coming to fruition. She said in that speech two and a half years ago (emphasis mine):

When a hurricane strikes in the Gulf of Mexico, this country should not be so dependent on imported oil that we are forced to draw from our Strategic Petroleum Reserve.

And families cannot throw away more and more of their paychecks on gas and heating oil.

With Russia wanting to control a vital pipeline in the Caucasus, and to divide and intimidate our European allies by using energy as a weapon, we cannot leave ourselves at the mercy of foreign suppliers.

To confront the threat that Iran might seek to cut off nearly a fifth of world energy supplies … or that terrorists might strike again at the Abqaiq facility in Saudi Arabia … or that Venezuela might shut off its oil deliveries … we Americans need to produce more of our own oil and gas.

And take it from a gal who knows the North Slope of Alaska: We’ve got lots of both.

Our opponents say, again and again, that drilling will not solve all of America’s energy problems — as if we all didn’t know that already.

But the fact that drilling won’t solve every problem is no excuse to do nothing at all.

Replace the hypothetical situations Governor Palin outlines with the current situation in Libya and throughout the Middle East and we have the today’s current energy situation. Governor Palin warned that America should not become so dependent upon foreign sources that we would have need for tapping into strategic reserves in the case of a crisis. However,the New York Times reports:

As oil prices have risen in recent weeks, calls have been growing in Congress for the Obama administration to consider tapping into the nation’s strategic petroleum reserve, which is now at its full capacity of 727 million barrels.

“Between the lost production in Libya, the crude oil dislocation associated with additional Saudi production and the prospect of further turmoil in the region,” Mr. Bingaman, Democrat of New Mexico, said in a floor statement late Wednesday, “we are now unquestionably facing a physical oil supply disruption that is at risk of getting worse before it gets better.”

Republicans on the House Energy and Commerce Committee feel that tapping into the Strategic Petroleum Reserves should only be done in situations like Hurricane Katrina, the most recent time it was accessed, not in our current conditions. At full capacity (as it is now), the reserves hold 727 million barrels of oil, enough to replace foreign sources of oil in the US for about 5 months. The Obama administration feels that this discussion is a reaction to transient oil price increases, and actually, their 2012 budget proposal suggests selling half a billion of oil from the reserves to pay for governmental programs. They feel no need to access this reserve at the moment.

The fact that such a possibility is even being discussed shows that, of course, Governor Palin was right on the need for energy independence, and her assertion that there is an inherent link between energy independence and national security is indeed correct.

The Obama administration has gone out of its way to not tap into our energy resources. Just yesterday, the Obama administration appealed a ruling from a judge calling for the Interior Department to administer leases for drilling in the Gulf. The judge that the administration is appealing is one of two judges who has held the administration in contempt for not appropriately lifting their drilling moratorium in the Gulf by administering drilling leases. On Monday, the Interior Department did issue its first lease since last year’s disastrous oil spill. However, this lease was for a project that had yet to be completed and was halted due to the oil spill. Essentially, this lease allows for an old project to be completed not for new drilling to be initiated.

In addition to Gulf oil, the Obama administration has not sought to extract the abundant energy resources in Alaska. Earlier this week, Doug linked an article at Human Events that questioned the Obama administration’s neglect of ANWR and other Alaskan sources. ANWR has the potential to produce 1 million barrels of oil a day, and yet it has remained untapped. Additionally, the Trans-Alaskan pipeline system is only operating at 1/3 of its current capacity, and the EPA’s over regulation has essentially halted Arctic drilling until 2012. Again, Governor Palin is right. Drilling isn’t going to solve all problems,but President Obama is doing very little to tap into our national resources and is actually obstructing resource development.

Energy has an effect on America’s economy as well. As Governor Palin spoke of in her interview with Bill O’Reilly last night, allowing energy development in Alaska would help lower unemployment and would reduce people’s reliance upon government assistance. The White House has even admitted that their moratorium on drilling in the Gulf would cost tens of thousands of jobs. Their moratorium also led to Texas based company, Seahawk Drilling, to file for bankruptcy. Not only are Obama’s policies killing jobs, they are contributing to increased oil prices (yesterday, prices hit their highest since September 2008). His policies of “diversifying” energy supplies, rather than increasing production of legitimate energy sources, are having a detrimental effect, as the Heritage Foundation reports:

Anyone could have predicted that the recovering world economy, coupled with the continued growth of India and China, was going to push oil prices higher. So if an Administration wanted to keep gas prices down, they could have mitigated increased oil demand by increasing domestic oil production. But that is not what the Obama Administration has done. Instead of increasing domestic oil supplies, the Obama Administration has cut them at every opportunity, and Americans are now suffering because of those choices.

According to Heritage analysts Nick Loris and John Ligon, Obama’s energy policy consists of: increased biofuel production, increased electric vehicle production, and increased renewable power production. These are all terrible public policies. The major source of biomass production, corn-based ethanol, produces less energy per unit volume than gasoline, contributes to food price increases, costs taxpayers $4 billion to produce 2 percent of the total gasoline supply, and has dubious environmental effects.

President Obama’s policies focus on yet-to-be-proven sources and eschew proven and abundant sources that we have right here. Such policies lead to reliance on energy sources from volatile nations, fewer jobs, and higher fuel prices. America cannot be powered on hope and change. Governor Palin, yet again, was right on our need for energy independence.

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Governor Palin on the Issues: Energy Independence

by Whitney Pitcher

Doug at Conservatives4Palin mentioned last week, Governor Palin has been right on the rising cost of energy due in part to inflation. Couple that with the Obama administration’s constant overregulation including an EPA revocation of a mining permit in West Virginia and oil prices climbing closer and closer to the triple digits, the importance of American energy independence and how government is involved in the energy sector becomes more and more apparent. There is no other politician who understands the need for energy independence better than Governor Palin. Because her comments on energy have been so extensive and the issue so complex, energy independence and energy regulation (particularly with regards to cap and trade and the effects of last year’s oil spill) will be addressed in separate “Governor Palin on the Issues” posts. This post will focus on energy independence which provides affordable energy, jobs, and security to America.

Her record as Governor has spoken volumes about her knowledge of energy development. From 2003-2004, she served as an oil and gas commissioner. During her time as governor, when she also served as chair of the Interstate Oil and Gas Conservation Commission, she accomplished a great deal to increase energy development and help America become more energy independent. Contrary to what the likes of Dan Fagan, Craig Medred of the Alaska Dispatch, and Matt Zencey of the Huffington Post spout, the Alaska Clear and Equitable Shares legislation increased the number of oil wells drilled, provided tax credits that proved beneficial for both small and large oil companies, and brought oil company jobs to a record high. The Alaska Gasline Inducement Act that she championed is the largest private sector infrastructure project in North America history. Additionally, another one of her pieces of cornerstone legislation was the Alaska Gasline Inducement Act (AGIA) which has brought greater progress to a transcontinental natural gas pipeline than the administration’s of the previous thirty years This past summer, BP-Conoco Phillips joined with Trans-Canada (the pipeline company) and ExxonMobil on the project, and the project received multiple bids to be shippers. These two key events continue to help the project continue on a more rapid trajectory than her predecessor had achieved through any projects or legislation they championed. In addition to development of fossil fuels, Governor Palin supported development of renewable energy sources as well, developing a plan to have 50% of Alaska’s energy to be produced from renewable sources by the year 2025. Her gubernatorial accomplishments with regards to energy regulation will be addressed in a subsequent post.

Governor Palin has shown her keen understanding of how energy independence is an important component of protecting the American dollar as the global reserve currency and helping curb rising commodity prices:

The British newspaper The Independent reported today that Gulf oil producers were negotiating with Russia, China, Japan and France to replace the dollar in pricing oil with a basket of currencies.[1] According to the Wall Street Journal, Arab oil officials have denied the story, but even the possibility of such a talk weakens the dollar and renews fears about its continued viability as an international reserve currency.[2] In fact, today a United Nations official called for a new global reserve currency to replace the dollar and end our “privilege” to run up huge deficits.[3] We can see the effect of this in the price of gold, which hit a record high today in response to fears about the weakened dollar.[4]

All of this is a result of our out-of-control debt. This is why we need to rein in spending, and this is also why we need energy independence. A weakened dollar means higher commodity prices. This will make it more difficult to pay our bills – including the bill to import oil.

Governor Palin has famously been a staunch advocate for opening up drilling in ANWR on land, but she has been critical of the Obama administration’s slothfulness in administering offshore drilling that would provide jobs and revenue in places like Virginia. She has also criticized bans to offshore drilling in Alaskan waters, the Gulf, and the Atlantic when other countries are ramping up development. While President Obama has ignored the implications of such bans, Governor Palin recognizes that increased development and energy independence will increase security, jobs, and revenue:

Today the president said he’ll “consider potential areas for development in the mid and south Atlantic and the Gulf of Mexico, while studying and protecting sensitive areas in the Arctic.” As the former governor of one of America’s largest energy-producing states, a state oil and gas commissioner, and chair of the nation’s Interstate Oil and Gas Conservation Commission, I’ve seen plenty of such studies. What we need is action — action that results in the job growth and revenue that a robust drilling policy could provide. And let’s not forget that while Interior Department bureaucrats continue to hold up actual offshore drilling from taking place, Russia is moving full steam ahead on Arctic drilling, and China, Russia, and Venezuela are buying leases off the coast of Cuba.

As an Alaskan, I’m especially disheartened by the new ban on drilling in parts of the 49th state and the cancellation of lease sales in the Chukchi and Beaufort seas. These areas contain rich oil and gas reserves whose development is key to our country’s energy security. As I told Secretary Salazar last April, “Arctic exploration and development is a slow, demanding process. Delays or major restrictions in accessing these resources for environmentally responsible development are not in the national interest or the interests of the State of Alaska.”

Additionally, she has warned that energy independence is needed to curb the dependence on energy provided by nations with ties to terrorism, such as Venezuela who has a cozy relationship with Iran. For the sake of both America’s energy and physical securities, greater energy independence is necessary. Dependence upon foreign sources provides other nations with leverage in their dealing with the the United States:

Although the Left chooses to mock the mantra of “drill, baby, drill,” and they ignorantly argue against the facts pertaining to the need for America to responsibly develop her domestic supply of natural resources, surely they can’t argue the national security implications of relying on foreign countries to extract supplies that America desperately needs for industry, jobs, and security. Some of the countries we’re now reliant upon and will soon be beholden to can easily use energy and mineral supplies as a weapon against us.

As Governor Palin stated on the campaign trail in 2008 and continues to say today, she advocates for an “all of the above”approach to energy independence which includes solar, wind, nuclear, and clean coal in addition to the more traditional oil, gas, and coal. Beyond these sources, Governor Palin has shown prescience on new energy sources that are becoming more and more necessary with today’s technology–rare earths–which are used in compact fluorescent light bulbs, hybrid cars, and other newer technologies. Governor Palin mentioned rare earths in an October Facebook post linking this article discussing rare earth mining in China and how the U.S. is behind the curve in domestic development of these resources. Domestic development of these rare earths will become increasingly important as China has decided to slash exports of rare earths 35% in the first half of 2011.

While the Obama administration’s mantra seems to be “Ban, baby, ban”, Governor Palin continues to advocate for drilling and domestic energy development of all available resources for the monetary, economic, energy, and physical security of America.

Previous “Governor Palin on the Issues” Posts:

Monetary Policy

Entitlement Programs

Top 10 Political and Policy Statements of 2010

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Obama’s Energy Theories

by Stacy Drake

Last week President Obama made some astonishing moves concerning the nation’s energy policies. First there was the revelation that Obama may be trying to take credit for the AGIA natural gas pipeline in Alaska. A deal that in reality was brokered by his perceived adversary, Governor Palin along with TransCanada and Exxon-Mobil to build a natural gas pipeline from Alaska to the lower 48 states. The Alaska Gasline Inducement Act had taken thirty years and Governor Palin’s leadership once in office, to get closer than it had ever been to a reality.

Personally, I think Obama would love to federalize this project because it’s pretty obvious that the man loves big centralized government. It’s also painfully obvious that Barack Obama has ZERO accomplishments since he took the oath of office and this would appear to those unfamiliar with AGIA, to be his success. It would also take away from Governor Palin something she worked so hard on, something I’m sure his political staff thinks would be a big score for them. Nevertheless, the nomination and subsequent confirmation of Larry Persily for the new “Pipeline Czar” position in the White House, along with Persily’s former boss, Mike Hawker’s defunding of AGIA from within the Alaska Legislature, sent a loud message. Things may not be going as planned with AGIA and the free market principles that accompanied the original plan may be taking a back seat to whatever Obama and Persily, a former journalist, have planned.

Another bit of hair-raising news in regards to Obama’s energy policies was last Friday when Ken Salazar told reporters that the administration would be implementing a three-year total ban on all new offshore drilling leases in federal waters. According to the latest Rasmussen poll 68% of the American population supports offshore drilling. So once again, Obama chooses to go against the will of the people and adhere to his ultra left-wing ideology. He is also going back on what he told the American people just last January during the State of the Union address. He said:

“But to create more of these clean energy jobs, we need more production, more efficiency, more incentives. That means building a new generation of safe, clean nuclear power plants in this country. It means making tough decisions about opening new offshore areas for oil and gas development. It means continued investment in advanced biofuels and clean coal technologies”

What a liar… It’s like when he told voters during the campaign that he wouldn’t raise taxes on the middle class and would give 95% of all American’s a tax cut. Obama’s budget revealed that he intends on letting the Bush tax cuts, which affect all working people, to expire. So-called “backdoor tax hikes” will be implemented as of January 1st, 2011. A good breakdown of the numbers can be found here.

Last week was also “CERAWeek 2010,” which was an energy industry conference held in Houston. Obama sent his Secretary of Energy, Steven Chu to discus his administrations policies. Investor’s Business Daily put out an editorial absolutely skewering Secretary Chu. It states:

Our secretary of energy pushes bio-refineries and windmills to oil executives at an energy conference as the administration announces a three-year offshore drilling ban. This is a policy for economic suicide.

They continue:

With an economy struggling to regain sound footing, Chu advocated a starvation diet devoid of additional fossil fuels that are to remain under the ground and seabed. Instead, he supports 53% more funding for wind research and a 22% jump for solar research.

Subsidizing alternative energy fits the classic definition of insanity. Despite huge subsidies, it has proved to be neither cost-effective nor a reliable, significant contributor to our national power grid. Yet we keep subsidizing it, expecting a different result.

“Oil is an ideal transportation fuel, so it will be with us for decades,” Chu conceded, even as the administration forbids us from getting more of it here, creating energy jobs, lowering energy costs and cutting our trade deficit. Instead we’ll rely increasingly on foreign and often unfriendly suppliers.

Chu acknowledged the role cleaner-burning natural gas can play in electricity generation, but only as a “transition to other fuels” in coming years. And the administration continues to gobble up lands where it might be found and impose environmental regulations that curtail the use of new technologies such as fracking to get more oil and natural gas from America’s vast shale deposits.

Equally unimpressed with Chu’s presentation was another speaker. “Gas is more than a bridge fuel,” said James Mulva, CEO of Houston-based ConocoPhillips, noting that huge gas discoveries in recent years in North America in shale and other unconventional rock formations could provide more than a century of supply. “It is part of the long-term energy solution.”

“We must overcome the opposition of the ‘hydrocarbon deniers,'” Mulva said, playing off Al Gore’s term for climate-change skeptics. Hydrocarbon deniers, he said, are those who “believe that renewable energy will quickly and easily replace hydrocarbons and cure all that ails us.”

The headline above a story in the New York Times read, “Oil Execs Chortle as Obama Admin Promotes Renewables.” Except that it’s not funny; it’s tragic. To leave vast stores of domestic energy untapped while Americans are looking for cheap energy and jobs is irresponsible. Unfortunately, this administration has no long-term energy solution, other than hoping for a lot of cloudless and windy days.

You can read the rest here.

Secretary Chu was also the man that wanted to “paint the world white” to “fight global warming.” He actually advocated building codes that would mandate painting all flat roofs white “visible tilted roofs could be painted with “cool-colored” paints.

The president and his administration operate on theories, not proven solutions. Governor Palin worked tirelessly to get this nation a healthy supply of it’s own natural gas as an avenue towards energy independence. The Obama administration appears not to be too concerned with energy independence, which might help the jobless rate by the way. Governor Palin just released a new Facebook statement on the topic of Obama’s misguided energy policies. In it she addressed the jobs associated with domestic energy production. She states:

According to a study by the American Energy Alliance, opening the OCS to drilling could create as many as 1.2 million new jobs and add hundreds of billions of dollars annually to the US economy. Those are real American jobs – and great American opportunities – that can’t be outsourced. Offshore drilling would provide billions in revenue for our states, allowing them to reduce their budget deficits without raising taxes. It would help reduce our trade deficit, which spikes with each rise in the price of oil because we’re so reliant on foreign sources of energy. And because we have some of the best environmental standards in the world, we should be drilling for our own oil instead of buying it from countries with less stringent standards.

Instead of setting his administrations priorities on jobs and the economy, Obama focuses his policies towards growing federal regulations to meet the requirements set forth by questionable science. Then they throw large amounts of tax payer dollars to fund unproven methods of development and completely ignore, penalize, and shut down those that are proven.

Barack Obama has lied to the American people more than once. His administration is headed in the wrong direction in regards to energy and a host of other issues. Energy is actually tied to most issues. Governor Palin has stated that over and over again. That is the central reason I began to support her in the first place, back before she was a household name. This issue is too important to lend out to these theories. The economy and the state of the world are in no condition to be a test lab for Utopian principles. We need to apply the knowledge and resources we already have at our fingertips to save this country from an economic fall and raise it back up to where it belongs.

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