Reality Dichotomies

November/14/2008 21:28PM
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On November 10, U.S.A. Today ran a short story that asphalt shortages are delaying road maintenance projects across the country. Asphalt is becoming scare as refiners install cokers that process the bottoms(asphalt) to squeeze out more gasoline. They are also cutting back on a petrochemical that is used to make roads more durable. 

Here’s the first dichotomy. The new administration is going to put in a massive public works project. And, President-elect,Obama, is expected to withdraw an executive order put in by President Bush to allow drilling in parts of Utah. While no new refineries have been built for over 30 years, certainly none will be built with the new proposed carbon cap tax.  How does this work? Limited low priced road building and maintenance materials to put on the roads that will scheduled to be part of the economic stimulus package. Can’t do the projects that were to done this year. How can you do ten times the 2008 projects with no raw materials?

Like that one. How about labor unions? GM blames the unions and government regulations for their failures. Here’s the dichotomy. The unions spent $400 million to get President Obama elected. For that, they expect card check to become law. At the same time, the new administration wants to give GM whatever they need to stay in business. Waxman is jockeying to take over Dingell’s post as the chairman of the energy committee. Dingell was not going fast enough on carbon emissions because he felt the auto industry could not cope with that in this environment.

At the same time, the unions will probably target the non-union auto plants in the U.S. Does this mean the successful auto manufacturers will become unsuccessful? Could be. If that doesn’t do it, will Waxman succeed as Dingell’s replacement and his carbon emission limits do it?

The economy has put people in the hole. Many are not able to keep up with their electric bills and a record number have been shut off. Today, the most cost effective power is generated with nuclear and clean coal. The new administration says they might bankrupt the coal industry. They will stop new coal plants under construction. Utilities, by mandate, must produce growing percentages from renewable sources-solar and wind. Costs of these range from double to seven times coal and nuclear. 

How does this work? People can’t pay their bills now and steps are being taken to raise those costs. Alternative energy is expensive energy. It will become more expensive as Waxman moves to put in cap and trade.

We now own the houses that owners can’t pay for, the banks, the insurance industry, soon the auto industry, and not to soon after that we will own the electric utilities. We have been a capitalist economy. What are we now?

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Comment (1)

  1. If there’s no asphalt for the roads, the government can just pave them with Hope and Change. Soon there will be no one driving on them anyway.

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