RUSH: Many of you people have heard me speak glowingly and favorably, and I will continue to do so, by the way, this is just a blip here, of Jim Geraghty at the National Review Online. Now, Jim got started on a blog at National Review Online in 2004. His blog was called The Kerry Spot, and it was TKS, and it was chronicling the comings and goings of the haughty John Kerry, who served in Vietnam, and it was fabulous. Geraghty’s written a couple books, we recommended them here. Geraghty’s been on the show. But he’s got a post here today. The name of his blog now is Campaign Spot and this is what he writes about McCain. ”How Skeptical on Climate Change Can the GOP Be In 2008?’ — One of the arguments being deployed against McCain is that he’s unrepresentative of the party on climate change and global warming. Robert Tracinski argues: But the biggest problem for Republicans with McCain’s candidacy is his stance on global warming.’ It’s one of many. It’s not the biggest. It’s just one of many, and they’re equally big. But I now continue.
‘McCain has been an active promoter of the global warming hysteria — for which he has been lauded by radical environmentalists — and he is a co-sponsor of a leftist scheme for energy rationing. The McCain-Lieberman Climate Stewardship Act would impose an arbitrary cap on America’s main sources of energy production, to be enforced by a huge network of federal taxes and regulations. Indeed, it irked me greatly when on a recent conference call, McCain spoke as if there was no difference in drilling in ANWR and drilling in the Grand Canyon. I don’t buy into the global warming hype. But that doesn’t mean I want Republican candidates fighting an uphill battle, trying to convince the public that it’s all a hoax. I like a lot of what Jim Manzi says — get past the argument of whether it’s happening, and get into the debate over what to do with it, and put GOP support for innovation up against Democratic carbon taxes. (And throw in some mockery of prominent Democrats’ blatant hypocrisy on the issue.)
‘Rush Limbaugh is the King Leonidas of the conservative movement, but I’m struck by how regularly he jokes about the concept of global warming. A lot of his radio talk show brethren are in the same boat, saying day after day, ‘hey, cold weather today. So much for global warming.’ The problem is, they’re only preaching skepticism to the converted. The independents and the centrists and the soccer moms and everybody whose vote is needed in the general election is already convinced that it’s happening. Whenever there’s a big storm or unusual weather, they buy into it. If you put the finest skeptical scientists and researchers from the Competitive Enterprise Institute and American Enterprise Institute into a room with a couple hundred Americans, and let them talk until they’re blue in the face, I’m not sure how much you would move the dials.’
So the argument being advanced here by Mr. Geraghty is, don’t argue whether it’s true or not. Accept the Democrat premise that it is true, accept the liberal premise that it is true and come up with better ideas. This is like telling a defense lawyer that if you know that the jury thinks your client is guilty, just accept it and bargain for a lesser sentence. That’s not what good defense lawyers do. They try to persuade the jury that they are wrong if they think somebody’s guilty. One of the things I consider my business to be here is persuasion in a lot of ways, not just your thoughts on things, not just your opinions, but if something is genuinely a hoax, and if it’s a liberal-sponsored hoax, and if its purpose is to expand the role of government at the expense of liberty, what is happening to us that we say go ahead and accept the premise and come up with better ideas to fix the problem, when some of us are saying that the problem is manufactured and false. This helped me to understand — I don’t know where Geraghty comes down on McCain, I don’t know that, but it’s so foreign to what I’ve always thought conservatives were about.
I mean, let’s accept every Democrat premise that people already accept. Let’s accept that Wal-Mart is bad for America; let’s accept that oil companies are bad for America, and let’s try to convince people we’ve got a better way of punishing them. What is this? This is one of the problems that I personally have with Senator McCain. This is one of the problems I have with any candidate who tries to claim to be conservative but isn’t. There are some basic elementary truths, ladies and gentlemen, about energy in this country. A friend of mine sent me an e-mail a couple days ago. ‘I’m working on a documentary about our security and dependence on foreign sources of energy, and I’ve heard you say some things that go against the grain, the conventional wisdom. Could you briefly fill me in on what your thoughts are?’ So I sat down, I was going to try to type a couple sentences, kept going, going, passion just kept rolling out. I think after the break, I will share the thoughts I shared with this person doing the documentary.
RUSH: All right, it has been advanced in conservative quarters that the argument over manmade global warming is lost; that the majority of the country accepts that it’s happening, and therefore we conservatives should abandon the efforts to argue the premise and persuade people that they’re being lied to and that they’re being hoaxed. So we gotta accept the premise because they do, and then come up with better solutions. Here’s the problem with that, on this issue and a whole lot of others, but specifically to this issue. What, of all of the tenets of the hoax of manmade global warming, is the number-one culprit? (interruption) No. No. No. No. What’s the number-one culprit? Before you get to business, before you get to America, what’s the number-one culprit in manmade global warming? Fossil fuels. Oil! Specifically oil, and then consulting from that, ‘the carbon footprint’ — and then, of course, after that, then who uses more than everybody else? Us! So the United States is third or fourth on the primary problem but in order to blame the US you have to first find something else to blame, and in this case it’s oil. Fossil fuels. If you doubt me — and don’t doubt me on this, but if you do — ask yourself a question: ‘Why is everybody running around with these, maybe well-intentioned, but utterly misguided efforts to replace oil with what are the equivalent of rubber bands?’
Hybrid cars, windmills, biofuels. It’s time for a little dose of reality! The fuel of the engine of economic growth and freedom worldwide, is oil! O-I-L. And it will remain so for as far into the future as you can imagine. Brazil. Huge oil field found off Brazil. Mexico, ditto. The ChiComs are drilling off the coast of Cuba with the Cubans. We can’t. ‘But Rush, there’s a security problem. We can’t depend on so much foreign oil.’ Okay. There is a little security issue here, but I think even that is being hyped. I had a story last week. I never got to this, and I can’t find it. I’ve looked on both computers, and I cannot find it. It was the five myths about foreign oil dependence or something like that, and it was excellent. Of the oil we import, how much we get from the Middle East? Thirty-three percent. The vast majority of our imported oil comes from friends. It comes from Canada, comes from Mexico. Now, I think all of government is hyping the security issue because energy companies want it hyped because energy companies think that there’s money in going green, because, as Mr. Geraghty points out, so many Americans have bought into it.
So they manufacture a product, a car, whatever, and it’s energy efficient. ‘Wow, this company cares! I love this company. I want to buy this product.’ Whoop-de-do. Of course, what big-time contributors want they usually get from the lobbyists and elected officials in Washington. Despite the pipe dreams, ours is a world that runs on oil. It always will.
(new castrati impression) ‘Mr. Limbaugh, the coal plants are polluting the skies! They’re destroying the country. They’re destroying the world. We gotta eliminate coal.’
Fine. There’s one way to eliminate coal: nuclear power plants.
‘We can’t go nuclear, Mr. Limbaugh! Did you see The China Syndrome?’
Right. We’re not going to go nuclear because of a Jane Fonda movie! So the reality is, we’re stuck with coal, and we’re stuck with its dependence for one reason: The very people demanding that we go independent are denying our right and ability to do it — the environmentalist wackos and the Democrat Party. Not only do we import 65% of our oil, do you know that we import 13% of our refined gasoline now? Thirteen percentage of all gasoline is imported, because we don’t have the refining capacity to handle it ourselves. Security, anybody? No new refineries in 30 years? We can’t drill in the Gulf. The ChiComs and the Cubans can. The Mexicans can. The Brazilians can, but we can’t. We can’t drill in a truly desolate, moonscape place like ANWR because of the environmentalists. So our security issues, folks, are self-imposed. But our security issues do not result from our use of too much energy. We are a growth people. We are a growth economy. The American people expect it, otherwise they wouldn’t panic over recessions. They expect us to grow. They expect this economy to continue to provide higher wages, better products, and more opportunity. The world demands this. The world demands that we lead economically.
Look at the stock markets this week around the world. When we were closed, they tanked. It wasn’t ’til our Federal Reserve got into gear with some fixes here on the interest rates and everything got stabilized. We are the economic stability of the entire world! We need more energy, not less — and, sorry, folks: biofuels, windmills, hybrid cars, new lightbulbs, are a drop in the ocean. Those are all conservation oriented, and that’s fine, but that doesn’t create growth. What’s happening here — and this is why we cannot accept the premise of the left on this hoax. People of the Madeleine Albright persuasion want us to lose superpower status, because as liberals they think our superpower status provides instability in the world. They think we are the problem. They think that we are hated because we’re too big and powerful. It’s all related to this white guilt, this prosperous guilt stuff. They hated the Soviets tanking. Two superpowers was stabilization to them. Now they think we’re hated and despised. We might be by fellow traveler dictators and commie SOBs, but the oppressed people of the world would give anything to live here — and when they get here, they expect the American dream as a possibility for them, and energy is key to it.
RUSH: And that, ladies and gentlemen, is why I cannot accept the premise of global warming based on a hoax and based on false promises as well, and yet propose better solutions. The one solution, the primary solution the hoaxers are proposing is to eliminate oil and fossil fuels. Well, it’s not possible. It isn’t going to happen. And if it did, your life and mine would cease to exist as we know it. We simply cannot grow; we simply cannot live; we simply cannot exist; we simply cannot advance as we have been. Folks, go back and look at the twentieth century. The twentieth century, compared to all the previous centuries of mankind, it’s not comparable the advance, the inventions, the technology, phone, airplane, the jet engine, space travel, computers, the list is so long. I couldn’t list them even if I could remember them all. You go back to the nineteenth century and look at the progress, the eighteenth, diddly-squat. What do you think one of the key elements was? Discovery of oil might have anything to do with it, ladies and gentlemen? The invention of the automobile might have anything to do with it?
Now they want us to go back to the horse-and-buggy days with horse manure in the streets. Worried about loss of dirt, with horse manure in the streets, it’s all going to be dirt. You can plant your crops right in the middle of the street. Yip yip yip yip yahoo. That’s why I can’t accept the premise. Plus, it’s a lie. The point is that people are being lied to and led down the primrose path on a hoax. They have to be told, if you’re responsible and you want to lead them. And you add to this what I just said about these people who think that we in the United States are the problem. We have too much energy, we steal too much of the world’s energy, and we oppress people around the world, and that’s instability. Our power makes the Chinese want to have nukes, and the Iranians want to have nukes. ‘We need to resource our power, Mr. Limbaugh, we really do. We’re causing the biggest threat in the face of the history of the earth.’ The oppressed people of the world want to get here. The people who live here want an improved quality of life every year. You know how I know this? I know this because I see it, and I, ladies and gentlemen, am immersed in reality.
I don’t search for the deeper meaning of reality. Reality is enough for me. You start searching for the deeper meaning of reality and you’re going to end up such a head case that you’re not going to be able to deal in reality at all because reality isn’t reality, whatever it is, something underneath it that makes it real, all this is a bunch of poppycock. I hear parents worry that their kid’s lives won’t be better than theirs. That’s all I need to hear to know what people’s expectations and demands are as Americans. Adherence to the global warming hoax is not going to provide that. We need growth — economic, political, energetic — all these things to provide the opportunity that America has always provided. This growth is led and must continue to be led by energy production and creation. Not until we found something better than oil at what it does should we get rid of it. Would you get rid of your current Lexus or your Cadillac for a 1930s Packard? Would you get rid of it for a Model T as your primary car? I’m not talking about collectors. You know what I’m talking about. Don’t start playing games with me in there.
The free flow of oil, not ethanol, the free flow of oil, not windmills, the free flow of oil, not solar panels, the free flow of oil at market prices is the fuel of the engine of freedom and democracy. The next time you’re at a sporting event and there’s a flyby of military jets at about 500 feet above where you’re sitting, when you hear that roar go by and you look up and you see what’s producing that roar, understand that oil is producing that roar, refined as kerosene, Jet A, American ingenuity in inventing the jet plane and all that, but understand that the noise you hear in that flyby is the sound of your freedom. And when I hear people come along who want to accept the notion that the hoax may be a hoax but we gotta come up with a better way of fixing the hoax — ‘Rush, I thought you were going to be talking about Republicans.’ I am. Senator McCain is one of these people that believes in global warming. I’m telling you, some of the things that are in his global warming plan, caps on carbon. He has compared ANWR to the Grand Canyon. ANWR is a moonscape. Every day people go to the Grand Canyon. Nobody goes to ANWR. They wouldn’t play an NFL championship game at ANWR. They would at Green Bay, but they wouldn’t in ANWR, even if they had a field up there.
By the way, I found that story: ‘Five Myths About Energy Independence.’ It’s from the Washington Post on January 23rd. It’s an op-ed piece. It’s by a guy named Robert Bryce, and he is a fellow at the Institute for Energy Research. He is the author of the forthcoming Gusher of Lies: The Dangerous Delusions of Energy Independence. Here are the five myths that he tackles. ‘Energy independence will reduce or eliminate terrorism.’ False. ‘A big push for alternative fuels will break our oil addiction.’ False. Give you an illustration. ‘The new energy bill requires that the country produce 36 billion gallons of biofuels per year by 2022. That sounds like a lot of fuel, but put it in perspective: The United States uses more than 320 billion gallons of oil per year, of which nearly 200 billion gallons are imported,’ and they think 36 billion gallons of biofuels measured against 320 billion gallons of oil by the year 2022 is going to make a bit of difference. It won’t. So what’s the better idea than biofuels fuels if that’s the best idea that’s out there. And, by the way, what’s that doing to agricultural prices and the topsoil and so forth?
Myth number three: ‘Energy independence will let America choke off the flow of money to nasty countries.’ False. Myth four: ‘Energy independence will mean reform in the Muslim world.’ False. Number five: ‘Energy independence will mean a more secure US energy supply.’ False. ‘Think back to 2005. After hurricanes ravaged the Gulf Coast, chewing up refineries as they went, several cities in the southeastern United States were hit with gasoline shortages. Thankfully, they were short-lived. The reason? Imported gasoline, from refineries in Venezuela, the Netherlands and elsewhere.’ Global economy. Think global. If you think that getting rid of fossil fuels is the way to save the planet, (doing McCain impression) ‘It is, Limbaugh! Fossil fuels are destroying, they’re polluting, they’re killing people.’ Yeah, well, go back to Oklahoma when they lost power for a week, subzero temperatures, subfreezing, ask them how they liked having no oil. Ask them how they liked having no coal to power — same effect as if there were no coal, if power plants were producing power but nobody could get it because the lines were down. That’s what people wish to do.
Speaking of Senator McCain, I want to go back, ladies and gentlemen, I want to reprise one of our parodies from the 2000 presidential primaries. Senator McCain, Governor George W. Bush, campaigning for the Republican presidential nomination, and white comedian Paul Shanklin, created this.
(playing of McCain Mutiny spoof)