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Feb 27, 2011

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Fred Gregory

Ian Urbina's ( NYT ) hysteria sounds like it was recycled from the Oscar nominated environmentally correct documentary " Gasland " and like Gore's " Inconvenient
Truth " will probably win tonight. It is fundamentally dishonest but a slick piece of agitprop.

Frack baby, frack !

Andrew Brod

In what way is the movie dishonest? I can see two people weighing the various costs and benefits differently: one person placing more weight on finding natural gas and the other on preserving clean water. But disagreement isn't necessarily dishonesty.

Account Deleted

Sadly for frackers like Fred the NYT piece is based on an analysis of data from 200 wells in Pennsylvania.

Fred Gregory

Jeffrey, I'll go with this

PA Official: Water safe

polifrog

I found this piece, American Law and Jurisprudence on Fracing illuminating.

Note how the authors go so far as to spell the term "fracing" correctly. For those of you not searching for loaded misinformation on this topic avoid searching for "frakking" or "fracking". This is not Battlestar Galactica. Stick to "frac'ing" or "fracing"

This is another case of those ignorant of the science being so far removed as to not realize that they are being required to suspend their disbelief... to believe.

Like Alar apple scare, Malthusian fears and global warming this is yet another example of scaring the rubes.

I fear we have become a nation infused with Don Quixotes.

polifrog
In what way is the movie dishonest? I can see two people weighing the various costs and benefits differently: one person placing more weight on finding natural gas and the other on preserving clean water. But disagreement isn't necessarily dishonesty.


It is dishonest in its assumptions and its biases. It is dishonest in what is ignored. It is dishonest like Consumer Reports was dishonest when it did its hatchet job on Suzuki Samurais. It is dishonest like NBC's Dateline attack on GMC trucks. It is dishonest like 60 minutes in nearly everything it does. It is dishonest like Michael Morre's Sicko. It is dishonest like all sudden acceleration scares. It is dishonest like the China Syndrome. It is dishonest like Hollywood because it is Hollywood. It is dishonest like the Economics Accreditation boards with little diversity of thought.

It pretends to be factual news when it is, in fact, agenda driven profit motivated tripe directed toward feeble minded believers who seem to thrive on their fears of the next man made apocalypse.

Steve Harrison

"For those of you not searching for loaded misinformation on this topic avoid searching for "frakking" or "fracking"."

You also might want to avoid reports prepared by law firms whose primary income is derived from brokering deals in the gas and oil industry.

Andrew Brod

Re Polifrog: Apparently disagreement is the same as dishonesty.

And by the way, what is this thing about Economics Accreditation boards? You seem to be hung up on the concept, and yet to my knowledge, such boards don't exist. Accreditation for business schools (where many if not most economics departments reside) steers a very wide path away from issues of scholarly content and substance. It's mostly a bunch of formulas regarding such things as the percent of professors with Ph.D.s.

If that matters.

As for Fred, it's touching to see that he's suddenly decided that government can be trusted. Even when it's a government that allowed not just fracking, but the dumping of the wastewater into rivers, and might be inclined to justify its decision. Even given the reported limitations in the measurements. Presumably, Fred's new-found respect for government will lead him to check back with us if the Pa. government discovers problems with drinking water later this year.

polifrog
You also might want to avoid reports prepared by law firms whose primary income is derived from brokering deals in the gas and oil industry.

I have found that those practicing law are well versed in the cases they argue. Not being well prepared leads to losses both in terms of issues argued and subsequently financial losses. These are motivations to get it right not wrong.

Can the same be said of a film? There is no price to be paid for getting it wrong when arguing a point to the soft minded.

Account Deleted

@Fred: I am sure state officials in Virginia said the same thing for years related to PCB's in the James, Elizabeth and Roanoke rivers.

Account Deleted

The arguments against protecting our nation's natural resources reveal the true nature of the modern conservative movement, which is more in line with pure greed than anything akin to traditional conservatism.

I believe a real conservative would concern himself with conserving the land and the water and the air that sustains us. But today's modern conservative is really nothing more than a front for big business. Break down any of their arguments related to the environment and regulations aimed at protecting natural resources and human health and you find pure, unadulterated greed as the foundation.

Ed Cone

The issue is not the domain expertise of lawyers, it's their self-interest in advancing the best case for their clients. They're getting paid to promote an argument, not to address some wider truth.

All things being equal, I'd prefer that fracking turned out to be safe and cheap, but my preference for that outcome does not make it so.

Fred Gregory

Anyone know the price of bottled water per gallon ? Just curious.

Okay call me out for going off topic but this is really not. It is part of the whole debate about the environment and the economy and conflicting interests.

An editorial from the Detroit News

"Democrats in Congress are urging the president to ease prices with releases from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve. But that oil serves the purpose of protecting the country against a more serious contraction of imported oil.

A better strategy would be to resume deepwater drilling in the Gulf, and consider exploring other domestic reserves.

Rising gasoline prices serve the purpose of those who want an immediate and drastic reduction in the use of fossil fuels. But the notion that alternative energy sources can significantly replace the demand for oil anytime soon is a pipe dream.

The only sure way to offset the decrease in foreign production is to increase domestic production, which has fallen to 5 million barrels a day from a high of 10 million.

The last time oil prices headed so sharply in this direction, Democrats and Republicans fretful about the impact on the 2008 elections agreed to expand domestic drilling.

That pledge was largely revoked after the election, and restrictions on drilling have instead become tighter.

The risk that higher oil prices will send the economy back into recession is too great to ignore. Easing restrictions on domestic production is a necessary safeguard."

Andrew Brod

No, it's not at all off-topic. Your view is that there's no environmental risk that shouldn't be taken in order for a chance, however slight, to lower fuel prices, however minimally and however far in the future. We get it.

Fred Gregory

No you don't get it. If you did you wouldn't make such outrageously callow statements bordering on invincible arrogance.)-:

Fred Gregory

Now back on the topic US energy needs.

Drilling Here, Drilling Now: It’s Just Common Sense (UPDATED)
We are living lives of self-imposed impoverishment. (Update: "Gas prices too high? Blame Obama.")
March 5, 2011 - by AWR Hawkins

"The bottom line is that we are sitting on a gold mine folks — “Black gold, Texas Tea” — yet we are living lives of self-imposed impoverishment. Although we have oil supplies sufficient to offset much of the tensions arising in the Middle East (and elsewhere), we’ve chosen instead to be dependent on foreign oil producers who aren’t very trustworthy, to say the least.

Why can’t Democrats who are always touting things like “common sense [gun] regulation” and “common sense financial regulation” remove their partisan blinders long enough to understand that allowing oil companies to drill here and drill now is obviously one of the most common sense actions anyone could take?

It’s time to turn the spigot in Montana, North Dakota, and Alaska’s OCS, thus providing the American people with the peace of mind that comes from relying on American oil for a change."

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