February 10, 2006

Vice-President Cheney Talks About the Future, Part 3

Carroll Andrew Morse

WASHINGTON D.C. -- 3. The good news is that energy policy occupied a prominent place in the Vice-President's remarks. The bad news is that the supposition from earlier in the week seemed to be borne out; solar and wind were not presented as significant alternatives.

The components of energy policy mentioned by Vice-President Cheney were expanding refining capacity, increasing production from domestic oil sources (including ANWR) and certain alternative forms of energy -- hydrogen fuel cells, clean coal and -- brace yourself, Bountyhunter, and take heart, John_b -- ethanol.

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With respect to ethanol, it is all about Archer Daniels Midland's lobbying dollars. A highly-motivated special interest with savvy and connections will trump a diffused group of entrepreneurs and consumers most every time. Didn't the founders call this "faction"?

Well, an even stronger faction will soon win out here -- the Silicon Valley venture capital community. Now that billions of their dollars are being hurled at solar, these powerful financing firms are going to be a lot more watchful as to initiatives coming out of Washington D.C.

This counterproductive ADM-centric ethanol support doled out by the feds will hopefully end up being whittled away over time while wind and solar support accelerates - particularly if politicans like Laffey and McCain get their way.

Posted by: bountyhunter at February 10, 2006 3:59 PM