In a letter to the editors of the WSJ, a reader writes about how natural gas aided a NY neighborhood after Hurricane Hazel struck upstate New York in 1954. Hurricane Ian helped him remember his childhood.
We lived in the Niagara Mohawk service district and, this being the age of Reddy Kilowatt, many of the houses in our neighborhood had been remodeled during the preceding decade to all-electric homes.
Our house, however, still had a gas range in the kitchen. For days afterward, the neighbors used our home to cook meals and heat a pot of coffee.
Immediately, the value of redundant energy systems was stamped on my youthful mind.
This is a lesson of more general value to American society at a time when we seem to be lurching headlong toward the disaster of being solely reliant on the electric grid by orphaning natural-gas appliances and the utilities that service them.
Back to the Real World: Washington, DC
The WSJ editors discuss the consequences of Biden’s war on fossil fuels:
President Joe Biden on ”Windfall” taxes:
Oil prices surged at the start of the war amid uncertainty about the impact of Western sanctions on Russian supply. But prices have moderated as China and India have continued to buy Russian crude at a discount, while markets have downgraded global economic forecasts amid central-bank tightening and Chinese lockdowns.
The Irony: Policies and Pressure = Inflated Profits
Why do gasoline prices remain relatively elevated? Production, especially in the U.S., isn’t keeping up with demand.
Recent refinery shutdowns in the U.S. and Europe have created a supply bottleneck, boosting refiners’ normally narrow margins. It’s no small irony that government policies and investor pressure to reduce production have inflated Big Oil’s profits.
Biden’s imposing another tax on oil-company profits on top of the 21% corporate tax rate will discourage companies from increasing production, continues the WSJ.
That’s what happened in the 1980s when Mr. Carter imposed the tax after OPEC’s oil embargo. The Congressional Research Service estimated the tax may have reduced U.S. oil production by between 1.2% and 8% from 1980 to 1988 and raised only $80 billion in revenue compared to the $393 billion that was projected. Congress repealed the windfall tax in 1988 because it made the U.S. more dependent on foreign oil.
What’s Going On?
The windfall tax is another “political gambit” as Joe Biden shifts blame to others for high gas prices.
Does Biden Want Lower Energy Prices?
If he were serious, Biden would call off his administration’s war on the industry and encourage his friends in the climate lobby to do the same.
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