Home Energy and Environment The “Drill Here, Drill Now, Pay Less” Con: Newt Won, America Lost

The “Drill Here, Drill Now, Pay Less” Con: Newt Won, America Lost

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Back in the summer of 2008, incurable Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich pushed the slogan “drill here, drill now, pay less,” claiming that making the U.S. more oil-independent would be a solution to high gas prices. Democrats, worried voters would reject the reality there’s nothing we can do to lower market-set gas prices and absolutely terrified of saying no to Big Oil, embraced the slogan. Later, President Barack Obama implemented it as our national policy. Six years later, how’s drill baby drill working out for you?

Today, while U.S. oil production is near all-time highs, gas prices also remain near all-time highs. Drill baby drill has been great for multinational oil companies, but terrible for American consumers. Meanwhile, we continue shoveling billions in annual taxpayer subsidies to those same oil companies.

A side effect of higher oil production is that oil transportation disasters are also at record highs. Oil train wrecks and spills, gas pipeline explosions, and oil pipeline ruptures are skyrocketing. Our communities, wildlife and clean air and water are now at the mercy of our national petro-state.

Note that gas prices hit their all-time high of $4.46 in July 2008 under President George W. “Texas Oilman Who’ll Lasso Those Saudi Arabians Into Submission” Bush, well above the prior peak of $3.70 under President Ronald “Yes Another Oil-Friendly Republican Are You Seeing The Pattern Yet” Reagan.

Aside from Big Oil’s record profits, there was one other winner from Newt’s drilling push. Gingrich got 1.5 million people to sign his petition, allowing him to cash in by spamming his big new email list. As Chris Hayes has said, “much of movement conservatism is a con and the base are the marks.”

  • I just wish that Mann and other climate scientists who have been slandered/libeled/etc. by fossil fuel shills, right-wing bloggers, magazines, etc. would sue, sue, sue until they drive them back to the dark, slimy holes they crawled out of.

  • pontoon

    landowners are currently trying to fight a proposed 460-mile Dominion natural gas pipeline which will leave West Virginia, travel through many counties in WV and VA including national forest land.  The proposed pipeline will carry fracked natural gas to Duke Energy in North Carolina and will also have an “export” spur line to Hampton.

    Imagine the surprise when we found out Virginia’s landowners have no real leg to stand on because the General Assembly gave away their property rights, allowing Dominion to enter their property at will.  The law requires essentially only “notice” be given to any landowner that they will be entering their property to survey their “very preliminary proposed” route.  Dominion insists everyone will have ample opportunity after the surveys and the route is chosen to voice their concerns to FERC.  They’ll be blasting through our rivers and will require “compressor” stations every 10 to 40 miles to pump the gas over our mountains.  I’ve been told the pipeline, 42″, is the largest anyone has ever tried to install in such terrain.

    Even though there are documented incidents of gas pipeline explosions, Dickie Bell, who represents part of Nelson County insists that gas pipelines are safe.

  • unstablefan

    should fluctuate between $8 and $10 a gallon.