Thursday, March 31, 2005

Tryin Ta Stack Fo An Escalade

I have to be impressed by how the environmental movement as a whole moves further and further out of the nutty granola category and manages to find a mainstream and even conservative voice by going to its roots in conservation and national independence. The days of the hippie tree hugger, while that guy certainly exists ad nauseam, as spokesman for the environmental movement for conservation are over. Now we have. . .James Woolsey? Wha?

That's right, a large chunk of conservatives are joining with a large chunk of liberal environmental activist to act against the gas guzzling ways of our society, says El Wapo. This odd coalition resonates around one common theme: national independence from foreign oil. And instead of going on a drilling jihad in ANWR, they're suggesting the answer might be to reduce consumption and demand for the black gold. To me, it's more than just a tree-hugging thing, it's a moral thing, it's a national security thing, and it's an economic thing. The moral part has driven the arch-conservative Family Research Council to join hands with environmentalists Set America Free, the national security thing has got Frank Gaffney and James Woolsey on the case, and the economic thing has the car industry and the UAW on board to stop the loss of American jobs and investment from the foreign technologies of hybrid cars and advanced disel, which make economic sense now.

The worm is starting to turn on SUV's like the Escalade, and pickup trucks as their fuel economy makes them impractical to drive in market conditions. And this is not likely to change in the future, but only get worse as we progress to the day when middle east fuel reserves go dry decades from now. We may actually see real bi-partisan Congressional action based on these odd cross-ideological pairings:

"Rep. Eliot L. Engel (D-N.Y.), a member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, said last week that he plans to form a bipartisan "Oil and National Security Caucus" to build political support for action. His staff members declined to say which Republican colleagues are being approached about joining the group, but Engel said at a joint appearance with Gaffney on Capitol Hill that there is interest on both sides of the aisle.

"This isn't a Republican or a Democrat issue, or a right-wing or left-wing issue. It's an American issue," Engel said."