Discussion: (3 comments)
Comments are closed.
The public policy blog of the American Enterprise Institute
View related content: Environmental and Energy Economics
Yesterday, after the president shoved a thumb in both the Canadian and American people’s eyes by gratuitously and politically rejecting the Keystone XL oil pipeline, I opined that it was possible the president thinks that people won’t care because he intends to simply lie about the whole thing:
On the other hand, this president has a history of doubling- and tripling-down on his more absurd energy policies, and isn’t afraid of over-the-top Orwellian speaking.
I’d like to thank the president for helping me make my point. On the same day as he rejected the Keystone XL pipeline, the Obama campaign has released a YouTube video that basically claims up is down, black is white, Solyndra was a major success, the green-energy jobs thing really is working, and that the Obama administration is as ethically pure as the driven snow. Watch it here.
This is truly an ingenious ad, partly because it is so blatantly misleading. Rather than rebut the Solyndra debacle, they quote a liberal newspaper which debunked a political ad by a rival regarding Solyndra. Choice stuff here.
My favorite lines?
“And America’s clean energy industry? 2.7 million jobs and expanding rapidly.”
For this, the ad cites a Brookings Institute study on the green economy, and misrepresents it utterly. First of all, the Brookings study looked at all jobs they could define as “green jobs,” which were overwhelmingly not jobs in the clean energy industry, and included about 350,000 bus drivers, and another 380,000 trash collectors.
As I observed when the Brookings report came out, the Brookings conclusions are not what the green-job boosters claim they are.
Brookings concludes that,
For one thing, the data counsel against excessive hopes for large-scale, near-term job-creation from the sector. After all, the U.S. clean economy remains small where it is fast growing, and relatively slow-growing on balance, as defined here.
To rephrase that, the parts of the “clean” economy that boosters point to as having rapid growth are the smallest sections of Brookings’s re-defined clean economy.
“For the first time in 13 years, our dependence on foreign oil is below 50 percent.”
Exhibit 1 shows the data behind oil and petroleum product imports, and it appears that he has done a bit of mixing-and-matching to arrive at the percentages that he cites. It is true that crude oil & petroleum products represented 60% of 2005 U.S. imports compared to consumption. The reduction in imports to 47% in 2010, however, is the percentage of crude oil alone compared to consumption for that year. When we examine comparable categories, it is clear that crude oil imports – relative to total consumption of crude oil and products – were only 2% lower in 2010 than in 2005, and that the big change that he alludes to was mostly in petroleum product imports.
Orwell starts with an O. So does Obama. Coincidence? Apparently not.
Comments are closed.
1150 17th Street, N.W. Washington, D.C. 20036
© 2014 American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research