The Obama-Gaia Energy Partnership
Wouldn't it be nice if the U.S. had such a trade surplus? Wouldn't it also be nice if Brazil would send us some oil (from its "domestic" production or even from the Gulf) in trade for some used U.S. politicians? Nah, we don't hate Brazil and maybe they don't need our cast-offs. Last year, they elected Grumpy the Clown to their own Congress:
Francisco Silva became famous as Tiririca -- "Grumpy" in Portuguese -- and received about 1.3 million votes, nearly twice as many as the next-highest vote-getter in last month's congressional elections. His campaign videos drew millions of viewers on the Internet, with slogans such as "It can't get any worse" and "What does a federal deputy do? Truly, I don't know. But vote for me and you'll find out."
"What does a president of the United States do? Truly, I don't know. But vote for me and you'll find out." Not satisfied with increasing our domestic oil production in Brazil, President Obama promised lots more great stuff in his March 30 address. Grumpy the Clown also brings unbidden to mind former Speaker "pass the bill to find out what's in it" Pelosi. She likes President Obama's energy initiatives a lot and sure wishes that all those nasty Republicans would stop being nasty Republicans:
President Obama says the federal government will buy only alternative fuel, hybrid and electric cars and trucks for its fleets, starting in 2015, to set an alt-fuel example for the country.
In his energy speech at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C., Wednesday [March 30], laying out what the President called his Blueprint for A Secure Energy Future, he also said:
-- The government will "partner with private companies that want to upgrade their large fleets" to alternative, hybrid or electric vehicles. "Partner" typically means the government will in some way pay them to do it.
-- The government will continue to promote electric cars as the answer, and will offer bigger incentives for Americans to buy them (currently $7,500 per car) and reward -- he didn't say how -- "communities that pave the way for adoption of these vehicles."
-- Obama acknowledged that getting power to run electric cars requires someone, somewhere to make electricity and outlined plans to do that, starting, in the meantime, with getting you to use less for other things. He pointed to programs he's proposed to get folks to use less for lighting, heating and cooling. He also reiterated an earlier call for 80% of electricity to be from "clean energy sources" by 2035 and listed sources as wind, solar, natural gas, clean coal and (he nodded to Japan, but did not back off on) nuclear.
-- The government will continue unspecified "historic investments in high-speed rail and mass transit" so people will not "get in a car and pay for gas."
Solar power is a wonderful source of electrical power, although the costs may (in sunny places such as Nevada) be modestly greater than the value of the electric energy produced plus the jobs saved or created. No matter; President Obama must now show his true mettle by stepping up to the bat at the UN Bangkok Conference to pledge more to the fight against global warming at the Durban Conference. Otherwise, all will be for naught:
Governments have agreed to mobilize $100 billion a year, starting in 2020, but a "transition committee" to design the fund, which was to have been formed last month, is still being discussed along with exactly how the money will be raised.
Wait: there's even more.