Democrat presidential candidates are trying to out-Trump Trump, using energy production as a substitute for the Donald’s big, glorious wall. It’s amusing to watch because none of these candidates possesses Trump’s persuasion skills. But they are giving it their best shot.
On September 6, 2019, Elizabeth Warren tweeted: “On my first day as president, I will sign an executive order that puts a total moratorium on all new fossil fuel leases for drilling offshore and on public lands. And I will ban fracking—everywhere.” Two days earlier Bernie Sanders tweeted: “Any proposal to avert the climate crisis must include a full fracking ban on public and private lands.” At the second Democrat debate, Joe Biden said he would “ban fossil fuels.” All the other Democrat candidates who entered the race have said similar things.
A decade ago, no candidate, no matter how unhinged, would have been allowed to spout such preposterous rhetoric. The mainstream media has been heavily biased in favor of progressive candidates for decades, but even they would have challenged such statements with hard questions. All that changed when Donald Trump took a ride down an escalator and announced he wanted to be the most powerful man in the world.
When Trump ran for president, he promised that he was going to build a beautiful wall on our southern border and that Mexico was going to pay for it. Did anyone actually believe it? I didn’t and I don’t think you did either. But, many of us were inspired by the fact that Trump was willing to put such a bold idea out there—an idea that tens of millions of people actually agree with, even if we all knew he couldn’t pull it off in the manner he promised.
The Democrats went to school on candidate Trump, and they have decided to follow his example. They are promising to do things that any rational observer knows they cannot do. In place of Trump’s wall, they are substituting what amounts to a ban on the energy sources that power our lives. Most of them talk about a time frame of only a decade or even less. They proclaim we can rapidly replace fossil fuels (80 percent of our energy supply) with unreliable wind turbines and solar panels, electric cars and trucks, and giant batteries as far as the eye can see.
These candidates know this can’t be done in ten years or even 50. (I’ll concede that it is possible that some of these candidates are so ignorant that they actually believe the insane rhetoric being proposed, but I’ll give them the benefit of the doubt.) It doesn’t matter. What they learned by watching candidate Trump is that facts are no longer relevant in politics. All that matters is that they are persuasive enough to win the necessary number of votes. If one of them is elected, they all know that their base will not hold them to account for the preposterous claims they made while on the campaign trail. All the new president will have to do is move the needle as far as he/she can in that direction. But even that would be a big
Of course, the term “lying politician” is a cliché for a reason. With only a minuscule number of exceptions, they all lie, and whoppers are not uncommon. But that’s not what we are talking about here. Trump’s promise to build a wall and have Mexico pay for it was the equivalent of breaking the fourth wall in a movie (When an actor directly acknowledges the camera). That scale of bombast had never been tried before by a legitimate candidate, let alone been successful.
While facts no longer seem to matter in presidential politics, their implications do. No, a President Warren would not be able to put a moratorium on fossil fuels and ban fracking on her first day. Presidents don’t have that kind of authority, and as a lawyer, she knows that. However, if Warren or any of the other Democrat candidates were to win the White House, the march toward energy insanity would turn into a footrace. It’s a race where everyone loses, especially Democrats. The realities of our energy-based world will not be cajoled by lofty words.
Readers of this publication don’t need me to itemize all the ways in which we are dependent upon oil, natural gas, and coal for pretty much everything. If our “leaders” decide to push fantasies in front of hard realities the machine called the American Economy will break down, and the repercussions from such a break down are likely to be severe. My fear is that if one of these people gets elected, that president could be so drunk on power that they push their fantasies into the wall of energy reality and do some serious damage to us all.
If you want to obtain a deeper insight into what the Democrat candidates are trying to do, read Scott Adams’s book, “Win Bigley”. Adams is the creator of the “Dilbert” cartoon. He’s a trained hypnotist, and he’s afflicted with the same kind of insatiable curiosity as I am. I gleaned some of these insights from reading his book. Interestingly, I discovered that over the past decade Adams had been reading many of the same books on human behavior that I’ve been reading. I’m currently writing my own book that will explain the psychological and sociological forces that are shaping the “climate crisis” narrative. In the meantime, please watch some of the short, animated videos I produce on energy and climate topics on our YouTube channel, @ClearEnergyAlliance.