Monday, September 28, 2009
"Drill, Baby, Drill!!!" (a hole in my head).
So the other day this humble blogger was listening to Sean Hannity, on the way home from school. (Editorial note: I try to listen as much as possible to right-wing talk radio as I do to national public radio. Mind you, I don't believe that makes me some kind of centrist. No amount of listening to NPR will ever balance out the rhetoric of Mr. Hannity and the other "nattering nitwits of negativism" (that's my nod to William Safire, sans "nabobs", may he rest in peace).)
Anyway, Mr. Hannity was painting with his broad brush again, speaking of liberal environmentalists as the harbingers of doom for the American economy. You know, those tree-huggers block US access to the huge resources of oil in ANWAR, etc. That got me to thinking, "Is Hannity really that stupid, that in bed with the entrenched industries of oil and coal, to be that near-sighted Is he that deaf to the voices of liberals like Bill Clinton who, almost upon stepping his first foot out of the White House in 2001 announced that the future of American industrial dominance was in clean energy?
But I shouldn't lay all this on Hannity. He only gets it honest. I mean, look at how few businesses in America are really going all-in on environmentally sound energy production, or even hybrids. The American auto industry was years behind on alternate fuel innovations. Heck, over a decade ago my debate teams spent a year developing cases on just such a topic. As a country we're hardly any closer to long term solutions than we were then.
(Now, you may be wondering what this has to do with "a life of liberal education." Again, I'm not invoking the adjective "liberal" in the political sense. However, the adjective, placed as it is before "education", indicates a person whose worldview is at least open to alternate ideas and other perspectives. Thus, I'm not averse to those of Mr. Hannity's worldview... at least not so long as they are open to points of view different from their own. That I've yet to find such a person who actually lives such a credo (Hannity paid serious lip-service to such a supposed view he possessed at the beginning of President Obama's term...but it was only lip service) doesn't mean I'll give up. My liberal education leads me to believe those people are out their.)
But back to the original post, about clean energy and American economic health. I give you Sir Thomas Friedman, he of the flat world with lexuses and olive trees. Do you think he'd have any sway with Hannity and the nitwits? Well, maybe... especially if Friedman invokes the specter of communism? (It's a great article I've linked to here. In short, Friedman labels China's decision to go full-steam ahead on clean energy production to be the "new Sputnik.) Of course, that's the kinder, gentler, more economically liberal communism of Red China. Probably not close enough to the communism banished by Hannity's saviour and idol, Ronald Reagan, but I'd like to think that something could force Hannity and those who opposed Van Jones as the "green jobs czar" to see that they and their stagnant, status-quo worship is keeping us from entering into a world economy in a timely fashion. One wonders just what they think we'll gain from this waiting posture. All I can come up with is that they're waiting to gain back some political position in the US government so they can claim some role in doing the right thing.
Too bad. They had eight years of a republican president, and more than enough time with republican majorities in both houses to do the right thing. All they did was drive us to the brink of depressions and destruction.