Thursday, February 02, 2006

And by "achieve energy independence" I meant "collapse into complete helplessness"

Bush's advisors are now stressing that when he pledged to cut US dependence on Mideast Oil by 75%, he didn't mean it literally.

Because oil is traded on a global market, it doesn't really matter where oil comes from. As it happens, most of our oil physically comes from places like Venezuela and Mexico. But we are still dependent on Mideast oil because the Middle Eastern countries dominate the market, and hence set the prices. That's why in my last post on oil, I said that "trading in a market based on Brazilian products is better than trading in a market based on products from Iran, Iraq, and Saudi Arabia." This is a big deal: everyone has to admit that wars have been fought over the price of oil, if only because Saddam decided to invade Kuwait in 1990 because Kuwait was under pricing him.

So now Bush's advisors are explaining that when he said "reduce middle eastern oil imports 75% by 2025" he really meant "replace an amount of our oil consumption equivalent to 75% of what we currently import from the Middle East with consumption of local energy by 2025." Since the actual physical amount of oil we get from the region is quite small, the amount of consumption he is planning on replacing is quite small. This does not mean that we will be 75% less beholden to the Saudis, because they will still control the market where we buy all our oil. In fact, we will be more beholden to them, because their share of the global market will have increased, because their oil fields will run out last.

So basically, Bush's underlings are now simply announcing that his only substantial statements on energy policy during the State of the Union address were deliberately misleading.

His promise to carry on with the war, though, was completely sincere.

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