President Obama held a town hall meeting Wednesday at a wind turbine manufacturing plant in Fairless Hills, Pa., to promote his Big Green energy agenda. Not everyone in the audience was receptive to his message.
When one man failed to clap as Obama talked about government forcing higher fuel efficiency standards (which, contrary to the president, did not reduce U.S. oil imports a single drop), Obama teased him: “If you’re complaining about the price of gas and you’re only getting eight miles a gallon — (laughter) — you may have a big family, … How many you have? Ten kids, you say? (Laughter.) Well, you definitely need a hybrid van then.”
In fact, there are no family-sized hybrid minivans on sale now, and any that come online in the near future will likely cost somewhere north of $30,000. We doubt that a family of 12, or even an average family of four, has that much money just lying around to invest in Obama’s Big Green dreams. But we’ve seen this Obama many times before. Instead of understanding the challenges facing his fellow Americans, and working to lower their energy costs, Obama lectures them about the alleged errors of their ways and tells them how they should spend their hard-earned money. The Fairless Hills exchange was an illustration of the professional politician who thinks he’s the boss, when in fact he is supposed to be the elected servant.
“There is no magic formula to driving gas prices down,” the president also said Wednesday. Maybe so, but Obama has figured out a pretty good formula for driving gas prices up. Immediately after taking office in 2009, his interior secretary, Ken Salazar, canceled 77 previously approved leases for oil and gas development in Utah. In February 2010, the Environmental Protection Agency mandated that consumers buy 36 billion gallons of renewable fuels (like ethanol) by 2020. By July 2010, the White House banned drilling in the Gulf of Mexico in the wake of the Deepwater Horizon disaster. The ban has since been lifted, but only half a dozen permits have been issued despite hundreds of pending applications. Now the Energy Information Administration projects a 13 percent decline in off-shore oil production this year.
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