Very Few People Actually Believe This

The Biden administration has continually passed off the rapidly rising gas prices as “Putin’s price hike.” This description ignores the fact that gasoline prices began rising steadily right after President Biden took office. On Friday, The Daily Caller posted an article about the real cause of the rising gasoline prices.

The article reports:

The White House often describes higher prices at the pump as “Putin’s price hike,” but prices were going up steadily after President Joe Biden took office. The price already increased by 55%, rising from a U.S. average of $2.11 when Biden took office to $3.51 the day before Russian President Vladimir Putin decided to invade Ukraine, according to Forbes.

“The ‘Putin’s price hike’ is laughable – and you can tell because no matter how hard they try to advance this particular little bit of propaganda absolutely nobody but White House spokespeople use the word,” John Cochrane, a Hoover Institution senior fellow, told the Caller.

“The administration wants to blame anybody but itself for the challenges of the American economy. [‘Putin’s price hike’ is] a good talking point because there’s a sliver of truth in it,” President of the American Institute for Economic Research, William Ruger, told the Caller in an interview.

The current U.S. average price of gas sits at $4.59 per gallon and prices in California have reached as high as $7.25 per gallon.

The article notes that although inflation is part of the problem, the problem is also due to the Biden administration’s war on oil and gas.

The article notes:

“At least early on in the price run-up, drilling activity was comparatively muted. Cancelled leases, cancelled pipelines, proposed regulations to penalize lenders that financed fossil-energy businesses all dampened production responses that would be putting oil and gas on the market today,” Kreutzer said.

…Biden stymied future production of gasoline by canceling the Keystone XL oil pipeline, halting the sales of a drilling area in Alaska and two in the Gulf of Mexico, and banning new oil and gas leasing on public lands.

“If the global supply of oil is low, we should ask who canceled the Keystone Pipeline on his first day in office, why fracking is banned in many states, and so forth. Hobbling U.S. energy investment has been the deliberate policy of the administration from the first day in office,” Cochrane said.

“The administration should have accelerated approval of pipeline permits, instead of blocking and cancelling them. It should not have cancelled leases that had already been issued. It should not be using regulatory agencies like the Security and Exchange Commission and appointments at the Federal Reserve to hobble investment in oil and gas production,” Kreutzer (Institute for Energy Research senior economist David Kreutzer) said.

Elections matter, and energy policies matter.

The Wrong Answer

On Tuesday, The Daily Caller reported that the Biden administration is preparing to ease sanctions on Venezuelan oil imports into America.

The article reports:

The Biden administration is expected to soon announce it would ease sanctions on Venezuelan oil amid the ongoing energy crisis, several media outlets reported.

The federal government will ease “some” of the energy sanctions on Venezuela, two senior administration officials told CNN. In addition, U.S. oil corporation Chevron will be allowed to enter into negotiations with Venezuelan state-owned firm PDVSA over potential continued operations in the South American oil-rich nation.

The article concludes:

“Our experience buying Russian energy should have taught President Biden that buying energy from tyrants is a dangerous proposition,” Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee Ranking Member John Barrasso said in a statement.

“Yet President Biden continues to reward our enemies by waiving sanctions while his administration does its best to kill American energy production. Funding despots isn’t in the national interest. Supporting American energy is,” he continued.

Venezuela consistently ranks as one of the least “free” countries in the world, according to Freedom House.

Meanwhile, the Biden administration has increasingly moved to restrict further domestic oil and gas production. The Department of the Interior canceled the three remaining federal offshore oil and gas lease sales last week and dramatically scaled back the federal onshore program in April.

The average price of gasoline reached an all-time record $4.52 a gallon on Tuesday, according to AAA data.

The White House didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment from The Daily Caller News Foundation.

The Biden administration is under tremendous pressure from the environmental extremists to end America’s use of fossil fuel. What the environmentalists don’t realize is that America is one of the most environmentally safe countries in the world in its extraction of fossil fuel. Getting fuel from Venezuela is not only foolish because it strengthens a tyrant, but because it is not as environmentally friendly as drilling practices in America. This move by the Biden administration is another step in the wrong direction.

The Economy Isn’t Really Roaring Along

On Wednesday, The Gateway Pundit reported that the US trade deficit surged to over $109 billion in March. This is the first time the trade deficit has gone over $100 billion.

The article reports:

The U.S. trade deficit surged to a record high in March, confirming that trade weighed on the economy in the first quarter and could remain a drag for a while as businesses replenish inventories with imported goods.

The Commerce Department said Wednesday that the trade deficit accelerated 22.3% to $109.8 billion in March amid a record increase in imports. Economists polled by Reuters had forecast a $107 billion deficit.

The government reported last week that a record trade deficit sliced 3.20 percentage points from gross domestic product in the first quarter, resulting in GDP contracting at a 1.4% annualized rate after growing at a robust 6.9% pace in the fourth quarter.

There are a number of factors that have created this deficit.

In 2018, I reported the following (article here) (quoting from Reuters):

The United States now exports up to 1.7 million barrels per day of crude, and this year will have the capacity to export 3.8 billion cubic feet per day of natural gas. Terminals conceived for importing liquefied natural gas have now been overhauled to allow exports.

Below is a chart of American crude oil exports (source here):

Obviously the Biden administration’s war on fossil fuel has not only hurt the American economy, it has increased our trade deficit. It is time to put businessmen in Congress and in the White House.

Other factors include over-regulation by the government which generally has reduced manufacturing in America, the inflation caused by overstimulating the economy, and generally bad economic policies on the part of the Biden administration.

The Conflict Between Going Green And The Mid-term Elections

The Daily Caller posted an article on Friday about the mixed messages the Democrats are sending out about energy policy.

The article reports:

  • Democrats and White House officials have pushed for both greater domestic fossil fuel production and less reliance on fossil fuels over the last 24 hours.
  • President Joe Biden announced a deal with the European Union on Friday morning to export an additional 15 billion cubic meters of liquefied natural gas (LNG) to member nations in 2022.
  • But Biden noted at a press conference that the deal called for “reducing Europe’s demand for gas overall,” even as the plan itself forecasted greater LNG exports to the continent.

What in the world do those ideas have in common? They have very little in common, but they are the result of the approaching mid-term elections. If the Democrats lose Congress in the mid-terms, it is quite possible that America will again become energy independent. It will take a bit to rev up the oil drilling and remind the banks to lend to fossil fuel companies, but it will happen. If the Democrats retain control of Congress or have enough power to stop an override of a Presidential veto, we can expect more hardship for the average America.

Some of the conflicts noted in the article:

But Biden noted at a press conference that the deal called for “reducing Europe’s demand for gas overall,” even as the plan itself and Sullivan forecasted greater LNG exports to the continent. In addition, the president said the Ukraine crisis, which has led to a U.S. ban on Russian oil imports and a promise from EU nations to ditch Russian energy, proved the need for the world to “double-down on our clean energy goals.”

…Meanwhile, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), a Democratic-majority U.S. agency that regulates pipelines, made a sudden reversal to a climate policy announced in February. On Thursday, the commission struck the policy, which mandated a more stringent environmental review of pipelines and other fossil fuel projects, saying it would now consider the policy a “draft.”

…In another reversal, Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm said Thursday that the global transition to clean energy “must be accelerated” during a meeting with the International Energy Agency in Paris. However, during a March 9 speech at the energy industry CERAWeek conference, Granholm said the U.S. was on “war footing” and needed to “increase short-term supply” of fossil fuels.

Who does she think caused the decrease in the short-term supply of fossil fuels? Anyway, elections have consequences–even before they occur.

 

Priorities?

On Thursday, The Daily Caller posted an article by Victor Davis Hanson that provides some perspective on the current war in Ukraine.

The article notes:

Thousands are dying from Russian missiles and bombs in the suburbs of Ukraine.

In response, the Biden administration’s climate change envoy, multimillionaire and private-jet-owning John Kerry, laments that Russian President Vladimir Putin might no longer remain his partner in reducing global warming.

“You’re going to lose people’s focus,” Kerry frets. “You’re going to lose big-country attention because they will be diverted, and I think it could have a damaging impact.”

“Impact”?

Did the global moralist Kerry mean by “impact” the over 650 Russian missiles that impacted Ukrainian buildings and tore apart children?

The article also asks the obvious question:

But how will the Biden administration square the circle of its own ideological war against oil and natural gas versus handing the advantage to our oil- and gas-producing enemies, as Russia invades Ukraine?

Or put another way, when selfish theory hits deadly reality, who loses? Answer: the American people.

President Joe Biden lifted U.S. sanctions on the Russian-German Nord Stream 2 pipeline designed to provide green Germany with loathsome, but life-saving, natural gas.

But first Biden canceled the Keystone XL pipeline in the United States. He has no problem with pipelines per se, just American ones.

While Biden doesn’t like the idea of Germany burning carbon fuel, or Putin reaping enormous profits from Berlin’s self-created dependency, or Germans importing liquified natural gas from America, Biden also does not like the idea of forcing German families to turn off their thermostats in mid-winter when there is Russian-fed war not far from Germany’s borders.

Here at home, Biden gets even crazier. As our enemies around the world reap huge profits from record high oil and gas prices, did Biden ask Alaska, North Dakota or Texas to ramp up production?

In other words, did he ask Americans to save fellow cash-strapped Americans from a self-created energy crisis, in the way he assured the Germans that during war reality trumps theory?

The article concludes:

Biden also has beseeched the once sanctioned, terrorist Iranian government. He wants Tehran to help us out by upping the very oil and gas production that America has tried to curtail for years. In return, Iran is demanding a new “Iran Deal” that will soon ensure the now petro-rich theocracy the acquisition of nuclear weapons.

On the eve of the Russian invasion, Biden begged Putin to pump even more oil to supplement its current Russian imports to the United States.

Did Putin see that surreal request as yet another sign of American appeasement that might greenlight his upcoming planned invasion? In Russian eyes, was it more proof of American weakness and craziness after the humiliating flight from Afghanistan?

Biden has blasted the human rights record of Saudi Arabia’s royal family. Now he is begging the monarchy to pump more of its despised carbon-spewing oil to make up for what his administration shut down at home. Is that why the Saudi royals refused to take his call?

The moral of Biden’s oil madness?

Elite ideology divorced from reality impoverishes people and can get them killed.

Because we have given up American energy independence (and the ability to supply Europe with energy), we are funding Russia’s war on Ukraine. Until our leaders are willing to acknowledge that fact, I don’t see the war in Ukraine ending or the war on American energy ending.

Ignoring The Solution To High Energy Prices

On February 28th, BizPacReview posted an article illustrating the Biden administration’s plan to deal with the current high energy prices.

The article reports:

White House press secretary Jen Psaki called for furthering green energy initiatives in the face of foreign oil dependence that could see Americans burdened by $150/barrel prices.

In an appearance on ABC’s “This Week,” Psaki dismissed calls for President Biden to restart the Keystone XL oil pipeline and instead harkened back to the executive order that canceled the project which stated, the U.S. “must prioritize the development of a clean energy economy.”

“What this actually justifies in President Biden’s view is the fact that we need to reduce our dependence on foreign oil, on oil in general,” Psaki claimed, “and we need to look at other ways of having energy in our country and others.

In 1948, Winston Churchill made a speech to the House of Commons in which he said, “Those who fail to learn from history are condemned to repeat it.” The actual quote is “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” (George Santayana-1905). Regardless of the origin or the wording, the concept is valid. Unfortunately we have an administration in Washington that is ignoring those words.

In September 2014, I posted an article about Spain’s attempt to convert from fossil fuel to green energy. I quoted a Daily Caller article detailing the results:

The IER study also notes that Spain’s green agenda was not able to keep its carbon footprint from rising. Between 1994 and 2011, Spain’s carbon dioxide emissions grew 34.5 percent, despite the country’s green push which began in the 1990s.

“While the renewable policies themselves were likely not the cause of the emissions increase, the upward trend does prove that renewable energy policies were insufficient to reduce CO2 emissions over a roughly twenty-year period,” according to IER.

“is anything but the model for American energy policy,” reads the IER study. “The country’s expensive feed-in tariff system, subsidies, and renewable energy quotas have plunged a sizable portion of Spaniards into fuel poverty, raised electricity bills, all while having almost no meaningful impact on curtailing carbon dioxide emissions.”

The article at BizPacReview states:

Contrary to Psaki, Bartiromo pointed out, “The only move for the United States at this point to protect itself is to become energy independent again.”

Bartiromo (Maria Bartiromo) further stated that Biden is partially responsible for the looming energy crisis as he canceled the Keystone XL pipeline and all drilling on federal land on his first day in office. Biden continued the assault on domestic energy production last week when the administration delayed decisions on permitting new oil and gas leases, Fox Business reported.

The delay is in direct response to an injunction that prevents these new leases from paying more than $50/ton on their carbon emissions that Biden also demanded on his first day in office. The judge’s temporary injunction allows the rate to remain at the $7/ton that President Trump had instituted following the initial $50+/ton under President Obama.

Biden had also proposed banning all crude oil exports from the United States in December, a consideration which was highly panned amidst an already suffering economy. Republican pushback against such devastating measures was led in part by Rep. August Pfluger (TX) who has once again stepped up to promote American energy security.

The war over Ukraine has further proven that America needs to be not only energy independent, but a major exporter of fossil fuel. That is the only way to remain a world power. If the Biden administration continues its race toward green energy, we can count on being a third-world country by the end of the Biden administration.

The Price We Are Paying At The Gas Pump

The year 2020 was a good year for American drivers. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, the price of a gallon of gasoline at the pump was $2.64 in January 2020, dropped to $1.94 in April, and ended the year at $2.29. The website lists the current cost of a gallon of gasoline at $3.50. That’s a $12 increase in cost every time I put 10 gallons of gasoline in my car. If you are commuting to work, that adds up fast. So how does the Biden administration feel about this significant increase in the cost of gasoline? The Epoch Times posted an article today that answers that question.

The article reports:

When he announced last week that he would release more oil from the American Strategic Petroleum Reserve, President Joe Biden told the American people he is doing everything possible to bring down gas prices at the pump.

That’s a lie. This administration and the climate change crazies have declared war on American energy.

They want high oil and gas prices. The Biden master plan is for American oil and gas production and consumption to go to zero over the next 15 to 20 years. How do you achieve that goal? By making oil and gas so expensive and so unavailable that Americans are forced to use alternatives.

In other words, the fact that gasoline is roughly $1.25 more expensive per gallon today under Biden than it was a year ago under former President Donald Trump didn’t happen by accident. This was not a result of a natural disaster, such as a hurricane, that could knock out our oil facilities. This was by design.

The left believes that they can change the temperature of the planet by forcing American energy companies to produce less oil and to force Americans to use less of it. How do you get people to buy less of something? You raise its price. This is basic high-school introductory economics.

The article concludes:

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott said it well in August that Texas “can easily produce that oil” if Biden “will just stay out of the way.”

He won’t.

The Biden administration strategy is to force-feed the American economy expensive, unreliable, and made-in-China wind and solar energy. His $3 trillion Build Back Better bill would dole out more than $500 billion of taxpayer dollars to the wind, solar, and electric vehicle industry to break the back of oil and gas production. If this energy source is so efficient, why does it need a half trillion dollars of your and my money?

Meanwhile, nearly every Biden policy has been deliberately aimed at killing U.S. oil and gas production—from killing the Keystone XL pipeline to trying to shut down other existing natural gas pipelines in the Midwest (Home heating costs are going way up this winter.) to shutting down much of Alaska oil production to new Environmental Protection Agency rules making it very difficult and expensive to drill here in America. He is also preventing the mining of American coal, which is still one of the dominant sources of electric power around the world. He also wants to raise taxes on the oil and gas industry.

Now, let’s be honest. Do any of these policies suggest that Biden and his liberal friends in the green-energy movement want to keep oil and gas prices low? If you answer yes to that, you probably believe that Al Gore invented the internet.

Elections have consequences.

Working Hard To Make The Energy Crisis Worse

I am sure I am not the only one who is impacted by the current cost of gasoline. Even as a retired person who does not have to commute to work every day, I cringe when I see that it is costing me almost twice as much to fill up my gas tank. I long for the days of mean tweets and lower gas prices. Well unfortunately the Biden administration is not particularly concerned about the impact of rising gas prices on the average America.

Yesterday The Epoch Times posted an article about the Biden administration’s plans to shut down another pipe line. Another source mentioned that shutting down that pipeline would be a violation of a treaty with Canada, but I doubt the Biden administration is concerned with that.

The article reports:

The Biden administration is reviewing shutting a pipeline in Michigan after anonymously sourced reports said federal officials were quietly studying its potential environmental impact, a White House spokeswoman confirmed on Nov. 8.

When pressed by a reporter during a news conference, White House deputy press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre disputed reports saying President Joe Biden was going to terminate Enbridge Inc.’s Line 5 pipeline, which stretches from Canada into Michigan. However, she conceded that the Army Corps of Engineers was reviewing the matter.

“Yes, we are. We are,” Jean-Pierre said. “I thought you were saying that we were going to shut it down, but that is not inaccurate. The Army Corps of Engineers is preparing an environmental impact [statement] to look through this.

“Any reporting indicating that some decision has been made, again, is not accurate,” she said, adding that an environmental impact statement “will help inform any additional action or position the U.S. will be taking on the replacement of Line 5.”

Line 5 is part of a pipeline network that moves crude oil and other petroleum-based products from Canada, transporting some 500,000 barrels per day.

The article also notes:

On Nov. 7, Politico reported that the administration was weighing the potential market effects of a shutdown of the pipeline in the face of Republican, Canadian government, and industry opposition. More than a dozen GOP lawmakers last week sent a letter to President Joe Biden, warning that the move would further cause gas prices to increase amid already-high prices.

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, a Democrat, has also sought to shut down one segment of the pipeline, ordering Enbridge to stop operations in May due to concerns about a section that runs under the Straits of Mackinac leaking into the Great Lakes.

But in October, the Canadian government, which backs Enbridge and Line 5, escalated the dispute and invoked a decades-old Canada–U.S. treaty.

Stay tuned and buy lots of blankets and warm clothes for the coming winter.

Spin Instead Of Solutions

I am not a big fan of the current gasoline prices. I doubt anyone is. How in the world did we go from being energy independent to sky-high gasoline prices? Well, it might have started with the shutdown of the Keystone XL Pipeline on day one of the Biden administration.

Yesterday The Daily Caller posted an article about the Biden administration’s current excuse for high gasoline prices.

The article reports:

President Joe Biden claimed Tuesday that gas prices have skyrocketed due to Russia and the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) refusing to “pump more oil.”

Biden delivered his remarks during the United Nations climate conference (COP26) in Glasgow, Scotland, where he was asked to comment on when Americans could expect to see everyday prices come down, including those of gas.

When America was energy independent, we didn’t have to worry about the output of Russia or OPEC.

The article notes:

Despite his decisions to revoke the permit for the Keystone XL pipeline and impose a moratorium on new oil and gas leasing and drilling permits for U.S. lands and waters, the president has accused OPEC of being unwilling to significantly ramp up their production of oil to combat rising gasoline prices.

“[T]he idea that Russia and Saudi Arabia and other major producers are not going to pump more oil so people can have gasoline to get to and from work, for example, is not right,” Biden said Sunday at the G20 summit.

Many OPEC members have shunned Biden’s pleas, arguing that they shouldn’t produce oil at a faster rate due to the uncertainties associated with the pandemic, according to Al Jazeera.

U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) released a report mid-October, forecasting that American households could see their energy expenditures go up as high as 54% compared to the winter of 2021.

Gasoline prices are not going down until American voters wake up and remove the current administration (and their congressional allies) from power. We can begin in 2022 by voting for conservatives for Congress and continue by re-electing President Trump in 2024. If you want to see gasoline prices go back down, that is the solution.

At Least Someone Is Fighting This Policy

On Thursday, The Washington Examiner posted an article about the Western Energy Alliance. This group sued the Biden administration Wednesday alleging that the pause on oil and gas leases on federal land and waters exceeds presidential authority.

The article reports:

As part of President Biden’s ultimate goal of eliminating fossil fuel as a power source by 2035, and from the entire U.S. economy entirely by 2050, Wednesday’s executive orders direct agencies to end federal subsidies for fossil fuels, to pause new oil and gas leases on federal lands and water. It aims to conserve 30% of the country’s lands and ocean waters in the next 10 years and requires federal agencies to move to all-electric vehicle fleets.

It carries significant risks and opposition.

Michael Shellenberger, the author of Apocalypse Never, said: “Climate change is not the most important environmental problem. Most of the trends are going in the right direction: Deaths from natural disasters are at an all-time low. Carbon emissions in the United States peaked over a decade ago; they’ve been going down ever since. They’ve been going down in wealthy countries for almost 40 years. We should continue to do what’s been working, replacing coal with natural gas and nuclear, but this is not the apocalyptic trend that people have been led to believe it is.”

Shellenberger, an environmentalist, a Democrat, and Biden voter, maintains that wind and solar produce their own environmental damage, adding, “They just gave permission, the federal government, to industrial wind farms to kill condors. This is, for people that are environmentalists, true conservationists — that’s bonkers.”

The article concludes:

Republicans will no doubt attack what they see as Democratic hypocrisy on the issue. Climate czar Kerry is known to fly on the Heinz Family Foundation’s private Gulfstream jet. Private jets consume roughly 40 times the carbon per passenger as commercial jets.

I support using the cleanest energy possible. However, the idea of running an economy entirely on green energy reminds me of the search for the perpetual motion machine. There are laws of physics that come into play when you are dealing with energy, the creation of energy, and motion.

We need to learn from the experience of Spain, as detailed in The Daily Caller on August 28, 2014.

Please follow the link to read the entire article in The Daily Caller, but this is the bottom line:

Spain has actually been scaling back its costly green energy agenda the past year or two in the face of high debt and unemployment. The country cut wind subsidies to major wind farms back in February and, in June, Spanish officials announced a new electricity rate schedule that effectively ended green energy feed-in tariffs.

The IER study also notes that Spain’s green agenda was not able to keep its carbon footprint from rising. Between 1994 and 2011, Spain’s carbon dioxide emissions grew 34.5 percent, despite the country’s green push which began in the 1990s.

“While the renewable policies themselves were likely not the cause of the emissions increase, the upward trend does prove that renewable energy policies were insufficient to reduce CO2 emissions over a roughly twenty-year period,” according to IER.

“is anything but the model for American energy policy,” reads the IER study. “The country’s expensive feed-in tariff system, subsidies, and renewable energy quotas have plunged a sizable portion of Spaniards into fuel poverty, raised electricity bills, all while having almost no meaningful impact on curtailing carbon dioxide emissions.”

We shouldn’t try to reinvent the wheel. We need to learn the lessons of those who already reinvented the wheel and discovered it needed to be round. To attempt to go down the same road as Spain, ignoring the lessons they learned, is folly.