May 28, 2010
When Professor Obama Meets Dirty RealityBy C. Edmund Wright
Just plug the damned hole! That, more or less, is the leadership and direction we are getting from our president as we grapple with the oil spill in the Gulf. What else should we expect from a socialist theoretician who has never actually accomplished anything in his life?
I guess we could expect him to take credit with his daughters if it works.
This is what happens when an academic finds himself in the position of actually having to get something done. Nothing written on a blackboard or recited from a textbook or lectured from a podium will plug the leak miles deep off Louisiana. Nothing in Barack Obama's background full of lectures and textbooks makes him fit for any job where getting things done is important.
Like many activities that impact our existence, drilling for oil is damned hard and damned risky and damned expensive, and it involves a lot of hard physical work and technical know-how. The same can be said of making automobiles, building houses, or manufacturing the heavy equipment that makes all of these activities possible. The problem is, academics unfamiliar with such work and know-how believe their tenured cushiness and "think-how" is enough.
I guess if you can Google something, you can convince yourself that you can actually do it.
The only ingredients that academic theoreticians add to the equations of necessary hard jobs ridiculous rules and regulations that make them even harder and more expensive and riskier. The oil spill in the Gulf is not the result of failed enterprise. It is the result of government-mandated difficulty.
In his press conference, Obama mentioned that this was a difficult project because the oil is spilling a mile under the ocean floor. Well damn. Whose fault is that? Is this where BP wanted to drill?
Academic liberals and their friends in high places have placed such incredible difficulties in front of domestic oil producers via regulation and legislation that it is stretching the limits of what man is capable of doing just to get the stuff out of the ground. There is much easier oil to get in ANWR in Alaska, as well as the oil shale and tar sands in the west, not to mention the calmer and shallower waters all over the place off our coastlines -- yet the liberals have blocked production in all of those areas. So down, down, down BP and everyone else must go. As long as they are American or British, that is.
It's enough to demand that Obama power Air Force One with solar energy or just shut up about BP and the oil industry.
The only oil we are now allowed to go for is doggoned near impossible to get to. Nothing -- and I mean nothing -- is easy to do thirty-two thousand feet under the surface of the water.
So now President Obama, who has clearly always aligned himself with the environmental movement that has pushed our drilling efforts into the extraordinarily dangerous deep waters, is becoming ironically victimized by that very difficulty. Try as he might to blame BP or the oil industry as a whole, or even the fact that we all need oil, the national finger of blame is slowly rotating right back to him and his administration's laissez-faire response for the first month following the disaster.
The professor has not a clue what to do. This stuff is hard. Well doggone! You mean if drilling five miles deep and then another mile below the mud on the bottom of the ocean is hard -- then repairing a screw-up in the same location is hard to do, too?
Yes, it's hard. Very hard. And as such, perhaps it would have been instructive for the liberal academic theoreticians and environmentalists to consider this when demanding that oil exploration and recovery be done only in places man is hardly equipped to go. Obama himself described the environment at the leak as one where "man is unable to go."
Fine. Then why are you liberals demanding that men go there in order to get oil?
Perhaps the world of the classroom is such a comfy and reality-isolated environment that liberal theoreticians never stop and ask questions like that ahead of time. Ensconced in world-class campus buildings that liberal academics could not ever figure out how to build, their neat little worldview remains uninterrupted by reality.
No doubt, the reality of the energy and the pollution and the carbon footprint involved in building college and university buildings never crosses their minds as they cash their paychecks and preach against everything that makes their ivory towers -- not to mention their paychecks -- possible.
And almost everything that makes those things possible is related to oil and energy production and consumption.
And it's one thing to see teens and twenty-somethings who share the Appalachian campus with my daughter walk around in their liberal daze, totally unaware of what built this campus in the Carolina mountains -- while they hold their cars together with anti-capitalist and anti-business bumper stickers. It's quite another to have a president who ran a messiah-complex presidential campaign still be such an intellectual child -- and one hell-bent on running everything nonetheless.Graphic by Pamela Meister
And it's ironic that now the president is about to have his reputation further tarnished by the very difficulties he and other liberals have placed on the energy-producing sector of our economy. Now the professor child is upset about a spill in his little utopian sandbox. The child is whining and pointing fingers and demanding that someone fix it. It is eating into his playtime for shooting hoops and playing golf, and it is so much messier than theoretical issues.
The problem is that the child has no clue how the sandbox was built or how the pristine sand got there. He has no clue what built the house in front of it or how the lawn around it gets mowed. He really has no clue where the money comes from to make all of it possible. But sadly, the child has the keys to his little kingdom.
And liberal academic children have had way too much power for far too long. Academic children thought every American should own a home regardless of his or her ability to pay a loan, so they made difficult rules for the lending industry. They thought Americans should want and Detroit should build little green cars, so they made life difficult on the popular and profitable SUV models. They thought unionized government employees should be able to retire early and have unlimited health care benefits, so they wrote these into contracts that are now ruining state budgets.
And now this. The idea that we must go six miles deep to find our oil is more liberal theoretician environmental groupthink. The problem is, this very idea is now boomeranging back and devastating our environment, and a good chunk of the Gulf economy with it. And the liberal academic theoretician is finding out that solving these very real problems is very hard indeed. Everything is when you're thirty-two thousand feet down.
Or maybe not. Just plug the damned hole.