But they're both wrong.
The only way to lower gas prices, according to energy economists, is to lower demand. The real solution is not a short term one. Unfortunately, our country has put off developing any sort of energy policy that's proactive. There is no short term solution.
There are only long term solutions, which includes alternative energy fuels. In the meantime, we simply have to adjust, ride our bikes, get a smaller car, move closer to work, drive less, work from home part time. We have to make sacrifices now to make up for the lack of leadership on energy in the past three decades.
Bloomberg: President George W. Bush today will urge Congress to lift the ban on offshore oil drilling, a move that is in line with a similar call from Republican presidential candidate John McCain.
``With gasoline now over $4 a gallon,'' Bush ``wants to work with states to determine where offshore drilling should occur,'' and have ``the federal government to share revenues with the states,'' White House spokeswoman Dana Perino said yesterday.
Democrats have long opposed Republican efforts to end the ban on offshore drilling that has existed in some areas since 1981. Expanded offshore exploration also has faced opposition in the coastal state of Florida, which will be a battleground in the presidential campaign between McCain and Democrat Barack Obama.
``I don't see how either house of Congress passes this,'' said Pete Davis, president of Davis Capital Investment in Washington. ``This has been a long-standing issue and the lines are very hardened.''
Still, rising oil prices are creating a drag on the U.S. economy and energy costs have become a top political issue.
Bush ``is under a lot of pressure to show that he can still be effective on an issue that matters to voters, so this is one they've pulled out of the closet,'' Davis said.
Arizona Senator McCain, 71, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee, yesterday called for letting states open up more territory to offshore oil drilling, even as he promised a break from the energy policies of the Bush administration.
Obama, 46, an Illinois senator who the presumptive Democratic nominee, said there is no evidence that lifting the ban on oil drilling would provide relief to consumers.
``This is not something that is going to give relief now, and it's not a long-term solution,'' Obama said yesterday.
The Bush-McCain motive:
As for gas prices, resuming offshore exploration would not be a quick fix.
"If we were to drill today realistically speaking we should not expect a barrel of oil coming out of this new resource for three years, maybe even five years, so let's not kid ourselves," said Fadel Gheit, oil and gas analyst with Oppenheimer & Co. Equity Capital Markets Division.
But it almost certainly would be profitable.
It's always about making the rich guys richer, folks.
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