Musk bucks the regime with his stance on domestic energy
As oil prices climb ever higher, Tesla CEO, Elon Musk, tweeted that he thought the United States should increase oil and gas production, displaying his surprisingly reasonable understanding of energy markets and the shortcomings of green technologies like wind and solar.
Based on his popularity online and his reputation alone, Musk voicing this opinion is pretty significant. When you then remember he is the head of the largest electric vehicle manufacturer in the world, it becomes that much more intriguing.
"Hate to say it, but we need to increase oil and gas output immediately. Extraordinary times demand extraordinary measures," Musk tweeted. "Obviously, this would negatively affect Tesla, but sustainable energy solutions simply cannot react instantaneously to make up for Russian oil and gas exports."
Musk is right! Renewables can't reduce energy prices quickly. By contrast, the fossil fuel industry is able to more quickly react to shortages in supply. It always has.
So why hasn't the industry acted to moderate prices? Politics. Since taking office, Joe Biden has erected numerous hurdles to oil and gas production. Despite what the White House implies, oil futures are based on the expected impact of policy and world events on the supply of oil, not the immediate supply, and as one of the world's top producers, the United States has a very large influence.
Even the left-leaning International Energy Agency (IEA) has recommended that European nations immediately restart their coal-fired power plants as part of a 10-Point Plan for the European Union to end their dependence on Russian energy.
The media spin on this has been stunning to witness. Oil prices were climbing well before Putin invaded Ukraine. Part of it was due to the rising demand for oil post-pandemic, but the most important reason was antagonistic Biden policies toward fossil fuel energy. Shortly before war broke out, the Heartland Institute released a report showing how the average American household spent $1,000 more on energy costs in 2021 than in 2020 because of destructive policy decisions. Any future analysis of 2022 is shaping up to look even worse.
Rigzone reports that some oil traders are predicting that crude could reach $200 per barrel before the end of March.
Meanwhile, the White House continues to downplay domestic production. Instead, ironically in the context of Musk's statements, the White House is repeating Biden's line that electric vehicles are the only way forward.
This is not the first time Biden dismissed the idea of increasing domestic production to reduce oil prices and shore up America's energy independence. This past summer, the Biden administration asked OPEC to increase production to manage rising oil prices, while rejecting Republican calls to remove barriers the administration had erected to domestic oil and gas production and delivery.
It's not a stretch to see how the war fits comfortably into the Great Reset ambitions of the World Economic Forum and other globalist organizations. The corporate media and governments around the world are doubling down on the idea that the only solution to the war in Ukraine and energy shortages around the world is to impose further green energy mandates.
Higher oil prices drive up the cost of gasoline, which puts pressure on middle- and lower-income families to find more economic means to go to work. This makes electric vehicles look more appealing by comparison. The environmental left has long endorsed making gasoline prohibitively expensive for most Americans as a way to force people to adopt greener lifestyles, including buying more electric vehicles and taking public transit.
Other goods become more expensive, too, like cereal crops due to the petroleum refining byproducts that go into making fertilizers. As the data clearly show, contrary to the corporate media narrative, rising food prices and shortages are being caused by higher oil and gas prices, not climate change.
Driven by the quest for power, socialist climate scolds and the mainstream media are attempting, through climate scare tactics, to generate more public support for giving up more freedoms (like private property rights) and accepting carbon taxes and other policies that are supposed to fix the weather.
They won't. The weather will be what it will be regardless of the elites' claims to the contrary. They would have people believe that if we just give them control of the economy, manna will fall from Heaven, and the climate lion will lie peacefully with the lamb of human civilization.
Musk's tweet indicates he better understands America's real energy needs and the damage high oil and gas prices are wreaking on the entire economy than either the corporate media or the Biden White House.
Linnea Lueken (firstname.lastname@example.org) is a research fellow with the Arthur B. Robinson Center on Climate and Environmental Policy at The Heartland Institute.
Image: Daniel Oberhaus.