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View Diary: (UPDATED) SOTU: Bush's "alternative energy" a day late and gallon short (103 comments)

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  •  On a more intrinsic level... (4.00)
    Neglecting all the cronyism which you so aptly catalogue, I think the biggest problem with Bush's energy actions on a more rudimentary level are as follows:

    1. He's a one-stone-one-bird guy.  He doesn't realize that alternative energy could revive our manufacturing and export economy and solve the jobs crisis as well as the energy crisis.  He may talk a good game but when the chips are down the money is going to highly centralized, corporate-owned facilities.  We do need those but we also need decentralized, consumer owned facilities.  Some "ownership society" there -- but then, an oil man wouldn't want citizens to be partially energy independent now would we?

    2. The big disconnect between actions and words.  He says he wants to encourage small business and entepeneurs, but then he gives large companies huge subsidies -- how are entrepenuers supposed to compete now?  He says great stuff about research, but he hasn't gotten his congress to restore DOE research money to old levels -- in fact he sat by while they raided to funds for pork-style alternative energy projects.  He'll probably say he loves nuclear power, but even if nuclear power can be done safe, noone can blame people for NIMBY when his appointees fail to uphold worker safety standards -- that screams at us that no nuclear power plant under Republican laws will ever be safe.

    3. On fighting waste, he's been all but absent.  One "vampire slayer" initiative doesn't make up for the overall DOE foot dragging that has happened on his watch when it comes to appliance standards -- even to the extent of failing to meet legally mandated deadlines.  And far be it from a Republican administration to address the problem that the poor spend 25% of their income on energy.  Even if we did nuclear power, there is no way we are going to solve this problem entirely from the supply side.  So I guess this might be called a "voodoo energy policy."

    OpenSource volunteers needed to bring election accountability: http://uscvprogs.sourceforge.net

    by skids on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 09:21:23 AM PST

    •  These points would be a great diary. (none)
      Reducing research only makes us more dependant on other countries' resources and technologies well into the future.  America lags far behind several European countries in wind energy for example, and cutting research means a lot of the money spent on deploying hardware to produce energy will be going to other countries for many years.

      I'd love to see some research on how funding has changed over the years.

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