A reader of the blog (Don) has been active in the comments section lately, and I certainly welcome his insight and arguments. He is quite intelligent and understands free markets.
I agree with most of what he said, but I do have two slight differences of opinion:
1. While he concurs that we should have more alternative fuel research, he states that government tax dollars (our money) should not be spent on it and that the free markets are the best equipped to handle it.
Well, I agree, that in the UNITED STATES, the free markets are the best to handle it (and apparently the only way it will get handled), because our recent PRESIDENTS, ADMINISTRATIONS, and CONGRESS as well, on both sides of the political spectrum, are too screwed up to do anything about it. In other countries (e.g., European countries), governments have no problems implementing alternative energy sources such as nuclear, wind and solar power. (France and Germany get most of their energy from alternative energy sources).
I personally would not mind if some of our tax dollars went into alternative energy research/implementation. Why? First, I would MUCH rather have our tax dollars go to this endeavor rather than the TRILLIONS that are going into the Iraq War. Second, it would be one of the greatest things our government could do to improve national security. Why should we still be paying all this money to corrupt OPEC countries who sponsor terrorism? They will be using our oil money for improving their weapons. Third, the high price of fuel is essentially a "hidden tax", isn't it? EVERYTHING is more expensive....driving, flying, FOOD. It is crippling the country.
So, while I welcomed high prices in oil now to provide the private industry with the free market impetus to bring on alternative energy, if our blundering and inept government had done something about this a long time ago (back in the 70s, 80s, 90s), we would not be in this position today. I want the pain now so that the future generations don't end up living in the US when oil costs $300 per barrel.
2. Don also argues that we could be drilling in Alaska for oil. This is NOT the solution!! There are only about 4 months worth of oil up there. Then we would be done and would be back at square one again! We need long-term solutions and thus, should not destroy peaceful Alaska for a 4-month band-aid.