There is oil in Alaska. A lot of it. Folks argue about exactly how much is really there, but whichever way you look at it, the answer is "a bunch". I'll get to global warming in a different post but for right now lets just start with these two facts: 1. Your car runs on refined oil called gas. 2. Gas is pretty darned expensive right now. Obviously there isn't enough gas, so going out and getting more will make it cheaper. If you don't think this is obvious, you need to quit the democrat party (AKA the McCain Campaign) and take an introductory economics class. After you understand the law of supply and demand, come back and read this again. But for now, I'll assume that everybody reading this grasps the idea that when there are people trying to buy more of something than is available, the price goes up.
Drilling in a deserted wasteland is a no-brainer. If you ask me, they should drill for oil, start some land-fills, and store depleted uranium there. But hey, that's just me. For anybody who thinks it really does need to be preserved in it's barren, useless state, we can pretty much guarantee it'll be just as bleak and desolate for years after the oil is gone. To show you why, I've worked up the following reference. If there are any drastic flaws in my logic, please let me know:
The Arctic National Wildlife Refuge is 19,049,236 acres. Yes, that's over 19 million acres. The area to be developed for oil drilling is 2,000 acres. Now, I've seen a few visual representations of what a percentage that is, but... well, they seemed off. The drilled area always looked to be a LOT bigger than what I imagined one nine-thousandth of the area would look like. So I worked it out myself. 19,049,236 acres divided by 2000 acres = 9,524.6. That's 9,524.6 to one. Shall we do this visually? I'll make each acre one pixel in a digital picture. OK, to make the picture big enough to see, we'll do 9,524.6 x 4 = 38098.4 acres. The square root of that rounds 195 pixels on each side of a square for ANWR, and 4 pixels for the area to be drilled. I've created a square in an ugly grayish, greenish brown (the color of ANWR) and the oil drilling area in black since that's the color of oil in all it's demonic evil. The contrast would really look nothing like this, but I'm giving the benefit of the doubt here. So what's that look like?
<---- The little black spot there is 4 pixles among 38,021 baby-food green pixles, and that is what those 2,000 acres would look like. Just a shame that we'll ruin the place, isn't it? A little spot in a barren wasteland that nobody ever visits might have some heavy equipment parked in it, and a bunch of people get so worked up that even the "republican" candidate is afraid to include drilling there in the plan. I can't believe there is even a question. I think we should drill pretty much everywhere. I sure wish there was oil under my back yard because I'd throw a derrick in there tomorrow, home owner's association be damned. In the mean-time I've gotten a "Drill here, drill now, pay less" bumper sticker. If you feel like doing so yourself, go here: www.americansolutions.com
14 Aug 08 update: This guy has some great pictures.
"If ye love wealth better than liberty, the tranquility of servitude better than the animating contest of freedom, go home from us in peace. We ask not your counsels or your arms. Crouch down and lick the hands which feed you. May your chains set lightly upon you, and may posterity forget that you were our countrymen."