Rep. Salud Carbajal and the usual cadre of anti-reliable energy activists, some of whom were elected to help forge energy policy in Santa Barbara County, participated in a photo opportunity on the Mesa over the weekend. While laughing about their anti-reliable energy successes via misguided legislation, guided Iranian drones were heading to Saudi Arabia’s essential oil infrastructure, effectively taking 5 million to 6 million barrels per day offline.
As a result of this elimination of reliable energy from the world energy markets, we can expect higher oil prices, which mean higher gas prices at the pump, and that means higher costs for everything, including food, clothing, shelter, medicine, etc. The energy industry is the industry that powers every other industry. And this act of Iranian aggression against Saudi Arabia via their proxy should serve as a reminder of why it is vital that America not be at the mercy of foreign sources of oil to supply our needs.
This truism was well understood in the 1970s, as the risk back then was what 97% of the experts claimed to be impending oil depletion. All of this brings to mind a popular Saudi expression from those days: “My father rode a camel. I drive a car. My son flies a jet airplane. His son will ride a camel.”
Forty years ago, the world, according to the experts, was running out of reliable energy. Technology proved that to be false on a spectacular scale. Today, instead of running out of reliable power due to the depletion of natural fuels (oil and gas), we are headed instead toward a future where we intentionally deprive human beings of reliable, plentiful and affordable energy due to hysteria over the weather.
We all know the reasons why Salud and his political allies are against reliable, plentiful, energy — it is about climate change. I don’t want to use this space as a one-sided debate over climate change. Indeed, to argue that climate change isn’t real is to say that gravity isn’t real. Of course climate change is real. And while we are on the subject of stating the obvious, water is wet, the sky is blue, Meatloaf is the most overrated band in history, and our taxes are too high.
What happened in the Middle East this past week must be a wake-up call to our elected leaders. They must stop behaving as though America isn’t 100% dependent on reliable, plentiful energy to sustain our economy and to power our daily lives. Thanks to reliable, abundant energy, this generation of Americans enjoys the highest standard of living in the history of the planet.
And not just Americans. Billions of people around the world are living longer, more prosperous lives because of American technological prowess and ingenuity. The shale revolution rivals the industrial revolution, and the information revolution in terms of what it has meant to the economic, social and medical mobility of human beings throughout the globe.
And that is why we must resist this dystopian worldview. A global catastrophe isn’t hiding around every corner. The data, the statistics, indeed the straightforward facts, are undeniable. Human beings are living longer, healthier and more productive lives than ever before.
Our environment is cleaner than it has ever been. Our food supply is growing exponentially, and our economy is thriving and providing economic opportunities for people of all education levels, the likes of which we’ve not seen in the history of humankind.
All of this, without exception, is due to the discovery, production and harnessing of reliable, plentiful and affordable energy. So note to Salud, et al., don’t screw it up!