Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Boss Hogg

The ideal weather returned yesterday, after four days of a cold, foggy, windy, December-in-June interlude that frequently oppresses the spirits of this otherwise fabulous city. I've resumed my extended walks, and this morning snapped this pic of an ancient, antique Cadillac with its disintegrating ragtop at the corner of Grove and Masonic. It's a fitting memorial to the internal combustion engine at the end of the age of the car.

With gasoline at $4.79 a gallon two blocks away at Fell and Masonic, "The Dukes of Hazzard" has been canceled and won't be returning to this town anyway for the fall season. Even in the land of NASCAR, where drivers depend heavily on pick-'em-up trucks, that show will be running a curtailed schedule.

Closing his eyes and going to sleep this morning, President Bush urged Congress "to end a federal ban on offshore oil drilling, according to White House officials who say Mr. Bush now wants to work with states to determine where drilling should occur," according to this morning's NY Times.

The Times article notes that "the federal Energy Information Administration estimates that roughly 75 billion barrels of oil in the United States are off-limits for development, and that 21 percent of this oil — or 16 billion barrels — is covered by the offshore moratorium." The United States consumes a billion barrels of oil every fifty days.

Personally, I'd be skeptical about the mathematical abilities of anyone who thinks that 16 billion barrels of offshore-derived oil, which could come on line a minimum of two years from now, would at this point or any time in the future have any significant effect on either world supply or prices.

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