Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Heather Wilson to hold Town Hall Meeting to Hear Concerns About LANL Job Cuts--but not about $2.50 gas

Heather Wilson Holding Los Alamos Town Hall Meeting to Hear Public’s Concerns About LANL Job Cuts

Since you need to have a job in order to ride yer bike to work...not to mention, no job, no food, go read more at Carol Clark's Los Alamos Daily Post. And no, this is not a political endorsement for Ms. Wilson, the former 1st District House member and current candidate for U.S. Senate. I'll ridicule various candidates here regardless of party, but only endorse them on North Mesa Mutts. unless the other contributors to this blog concur with an endorsement.

From The Daily Post: "Wilson encourages the public to attend her town hall meeting beginning at 4:30 p.m. Wednesday, March 14 at the Best Western Hilltop House Hotel."

Welcome to BombTown, Ms. Wilson.To her credit, she now seems to regret creating yet another government bureaucracy for taxpayers to feed . Question is, can she do something about it?

On another subject, and speaking of awarding the Order of the Bronx Cheer, I do get a kick out of Newt's continued bombast about returning two fifty a gallon gas to the pump. Reminds me of those old "a chicken in every pot" speeches made by other highly honorable, ahem, politicians.
That's a Bronx Cheer
A couple comments. One, back in the early eighties when gas got expensive, a lot of my fellow grad students who knew something about sedimentary geology bailed out of grad school and took lucrative jobs in the oil patch. My good friend Joe Smoot, formerly a geology professor at Stony Brook and now a senior geologist with the USGS, grumbled that his master's student was instantly making more dinero than he was.

But when gas and oil prices fell a decade later, many of those budding petroleum geologists got laid off. Oil companies are not charities: they don't explore for cheap oil. The cheap stuff has already been pumped out and burned. Companies now explore for more exotic formations (deeper water, more complex geological formations, secondary recovery and other advanced techniques) when the market will pay them handsomely to do so. We used up most of the easy stuff.  Estimating ultimate world reserves, including those recoverable using advanced techniques, is an elusive target. According to a 2007 American Association of Petroleum Geologists conference  "World oil production will reach a peak plateau by 2020-40...depending on the ultimate level of world oil resources -- which is substantially uncertain -- this plateau of maximum production is likely to last for 20-30 years before world production begins its ultimate decline,” (Hedberg Research Conference , 2007 AAPG Annual Convention in Long Beach.). Of course, that forecast is five years old.
From the Hedberg Conference (2007) report

Two, we live in 2012, not 1970. The rest of the world is racing to catch up to us in auto use and competing with the US market for gasoline, which is why we are now exporting gasoline as a finished product. Dem ferriners, you guessed, pay for it with all those dollars we export overseas for products you buy at the local Big Box Store. If you want to save at the pump, you simply have to use less of the dino juice. Get a smaller or more efficient car, something I don't see enough of on the road. Leave the horse hauler home and ride your bike. Get your kids on bikes to school so you can do the same. Ride the bus. Carpool.  Etc. Just don't buy a big SUV you don't need and then bitch about the price of gas.

Its not that I like paying more at the pump, but its simply supply and demand. To be sure, and with all due respect to professional, election-year liars, the US is now supplying more of is own fossil fuel resources, not less, as a function of the total we consume. You can thank Big Oil more than politicians for that (as well as a lot of very smart little guys). But that is because technology has advanced and prices support the costs of recovery while providing tidy profit for the industry.

 If, by contrast, you want government meddling with gasoline and oil, go back to the 1970's. Government controls are basically what Newt would have to do in order to convince people to explore, drill, recover, and sell cheap. As far as the 1970's attempts by government to regulate gasoline prices, consumption (remember the national 55 mph speed limit?) and distribution (remember "odd-even")? It wasn't pretty.

It took Ma Nature tens to hundreds of millions of years to make that oil and we burned a heck of a lot of it in about a hundred years; our consumption rate is accelerating. The big science now, aside from developing more conventional and unconventional resource, is to find a cost-effective way to circumvent the slow process (i.e., biofuels, etc) while not loading up the atmosphere with enough CO2 to worry even the skeptics. Until we do those things, I suggest we conserve what we got.

If elected, I promise to bring back the past.
Especially more Lester Flatt and Earl Scruggs


Steve A said...

When it comes to news stories about Wilson, my favorite, from February 21, was headlined; "Wilson Reacts...: Says Lab Needs a Fighter"

She might have been referring to ol mean ol man Khal...

Steve A said...

Lest we think the Republicans are really a "small government" party, we should not forget that price controls, that 55mph speed limit, EPA, and Medicare Part D were all enacted under Republican presidents. And don't get me started about the legitimacy of the Feds' role in "No Child Left Behind." Newt is only following in the mainstream of the agents in "Gone With the Wind" who promised "40 acres and a mule."

Khal said...

Nowdays, someone else gets the forty acres and you and I are the mules.