Here's a piece of news that I found today on Salon
that got lost in all of the wailing about ... well, you know. An open letter
(warning: .pdf) was sent to our Oil President by a group of prominent hawks, calling for a stronger federal commitment to developing hybrid technology.
Keep going over the rainbow to see what they said, and take the poll.
Unlikely Allies Fight U.S. Oil Dependence
by John J. Fialka and Jeffrey Ball
Mon, Mar 28, 2005 12:34 GMT
WASHINGTON - High oil prices are uniting unlikely allies in a campaign to change American energy policy. A bipartisan coalition -- including an increasing number of defense hawks -- is backing policies to curb petroleum use, a cause generally associated with environmental activists.
Today, 26 former national-security officials from Republican and Democratic administrations will send a letter to President Bush calling for "a major new initiative to curtail U.S. consumption" by improving the fuel economy of U.S. autos and developing alternatives to fossil fuels.
The group asks the federal government to spend as much as $1 billion on the effort over the next five years -- "a level proportionate with other priorities for our nation's defense."
This could be a major development in the push toward alternate fuel sources, if only the government and increasingly worthless corporate media wasn't wasting time prying into private family matters. The interstate highway system, which helped build our car culture, was built based to a great extent on national security grounds . Perhaps building a new push for alternative fuels on that same ground will finally provide the political impetus needed to finally make it happen.
The letters signatories include hawks from across the political spectrum, from James Woolsey to Gary Hart.
"The price at the pump is not all we're paying right now. We are also paying $400 billion for a defense budget," says Robert C. McFarlane, President Reagan's national-security adviser and a signer of the letter.
Frank Gaffney, another signer and former Reagan official who heads the Center for Security Policy, a national-security think tank in Washington, adds: "I don't often find myself in agreement with those at the Natural Resources Defense Council, but I'm delighted to have them joining us in this initiative because I do think there is common ground.
There is now a critical mass of national-security-minded people coming together to make the argument that this is no longer something we should do at some point. Reducing U.S. oil consumption, he says, is "no longer a nice thing to do. It's imperative."
The letter was organized by the Energy Future Coalition, one of several bipartisan groups launched in Washington after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks to argue that the level of U.S. oil consumption represents a pressing danger -- and that it can be curbed in a way that doesn't decimate the economy. Many of the groups have tried to find common ground among environmentalists, auto makers and evangelical activists.
While I am doubtful that anything will happen under Bush's tenure, I find a glimmer of hope that at least some new coalitions are being built to take a fresh look at this vital issue. Our cars are helping to kill the earth, and the coming fights over increasingly scarce sources of oil promise to be bloody and protracted (not that they haven't already started).
I find a little hope in this news, and thought I'd pass it along hoping to help spread the word.
crossposted from LiberalStreetFight