Skip to comments.Washington Turns Science to Science Fiction
Posted on 02/16/2013 12:34:05 PM PST by Kaslin
If you build it, an Iowa corn farmer was told in the movie Field of Dreams, they will come. That worked out so well for all concerned that the federal government is reviving the approach, with some slight edits. If we mandate it, the science will come, seems to be Washingtons motto.
Instead, government has ended up replacing science with, well, fiction. Consider the push for renewable fuels.
Its easy to see why lawmakers would want to encourage Americans to grow energy rather than dig it out of the ground. But in their eagerness to create an industry, lawmakers often go too far. In 2007, Congress passed a requirement that refiners add something called cellulosic biofuel to their gasoline. Its made from non-edible plant material -- wood chips, corn husks, and so forth. The problem: Nobody could produce such biofuel on a commercial scale.
Still, hope triumphed over reality. Lawmakers demanded that refiners use 100 million gallons in 2010, 250 million in 2011, and half a billion in 2012. Refiners ended up breaking the law, though, because they used no cellulosic biofuel. Only about 20,000 gallons have ever been produced commercially, and all of that was exported to Brazil last year.
The federal government actually benefitted, in a way, because the Environmental Protection Agency fined refiners $6.8 million in 2011 for failing to use a product that didnt exist. Good thing its not called the Reality protection agency.
EPA had wanted to pocket another $8 million or so in fines for last year, but a federal court said it cannot. Still, that isnt stopping the agency from trying to squeeze more money out of refiners. This year, EPA says it will demand refiners use 14 million gallons of this non-existent product. Expect another lawsuit to ensue.
This matters to everyone, because were all paying more for gasoline than we need to, because when theyre hit with fines, refiners simply add their higher costs into the price of a gallon of gasoline. But another EPA program may end up costing you even more.
Two years ago, EPA declared that E15 -- gasoline thats 15 percent ethanol -- is safe for use in any car made after 2001. Currently refiners are required to use 10 percent ethanol, as virtually any gas pump in the country warns you.
But in tests completed last month, the American Petroleum Institute found that E15 led to, an elevated incidence of fuel pump failures, fuel system component swelling, and impairment of fuel measurement systems in some of the vehicles tested. E15 could cause erratic and misleading fuel gauge readings or cause faulty check engine light illuminations. It also could cause critical components to break and stop fuel flow to the engine. None of these problems occurred when E10 or gasoline without ethanol was used.
The problem, again, is one of science. EPA approved E15 without waiting for testing on it to be completed. As the API report notes, When Congress passed the law, it could not know it was creating this problem. Today we know. The answer is to repeal the [Renewable Fuel Standard] before it puts millions of vehicles and many motorists at risk.
Thats one answer. A more comprehensive answer would be for Congress to stop passing vague laws, such as the RFS, and then expecting bureaucrats to find ways to implement them.
Todays bureaucrats like to claim theres a scientific reason that they have so much power. As Matthew Spalding writes for The Heritage Foundation, They rule over virtually every aspect of our daily lives, ostensibly in the name of the American people but in actuality by the claimed authority of science, policy expertise, and administrative efficiency.
Sadly, were seeing not only a usurpation of political power by todays bureaucrats, but a perversion of science as well. Instead of having Washington decide whats best for Americans, lets repeal the EPAs various mandates and let the market decide what fuel is best in our cars.
Which brings to mind a old saying... “They could F*** up a Wet Dream”.
Whatever your politics, you must obey the laws of physics. Such a simple concept you would think any Democrat would understand. Then again the Democrat party is a collection of the depressed, schizo affective, agnostic nihilists, non productive community organizers and the decadent. Should never expect rational policy when this clown parade is in power.
“If we mandate it, the science will come, seems to be Washingtons motto.”
Only someone who has little or no knowledge of science, or technology could believe that. Unfortunately, that describes the majority of voters, and their elected representatives.
We are turning into some bizarro mix of Logan’s Run, Soylent Green, Brave New World, Animal Farm and 1984.
What passes for science to the Washington crowd is consensus.
What kind of hearings were held about E15 and the like? Any actual scientists, people who work in the field? I’d bet dollars to doughnuts, no such thing was done.
Yet, somehow, D.C. thinks their Ivy League ‘educations’ makes them smarter than everyone else.
Amazing how ‘unintended’ all their Laws/regs turn out to be; but to us ‘peons’, never unforeseen.
“Which brings to mind a old saying... They could F*** up a Wet Dream.
I’ve heard that one, I’ve also heard, “He could F*** up a rock.” Then there was the way someone described a coworker to me, “Give him a rock and a feather and he would find some way to use the feather to F*** up the rock.” That is government at its finest.
The fix is simple:
replace those parts on a regular basis.
I think one of the ten reasons for newspaper failures in the US....is that they simply became a mouthpiece, with no real balanced view of the local situation, the state, the federal government, or the world.
Subscription numbers across the nation have been declining for three decades. Ask your neighbors, and you would generally find that most folks under the age of forty....don’t subscribe to the paper anymore. The group over fifty....probably still have seventy percent signed up. The dinosaur is dying off with these kind of trends.
Trouble is, this paper got started ten years or so ago as the rebel, upstart as part of a town swing away from ‘rats (they don’t even come up with a candidate for mayor anymore) and the then only town paper which was one of the Gannet string papers. The newcomer did very well, growing to over fifty pages a week (the Gannet paper is down to eight or so) and helping to elect Republicans and an independent party to all major town positions within a couple of years. It certainly has represented local interests well. This may be why these propaganda articles are being run. They’ve printed Vilsack nuggets before, and since this is a farming area, they may be buying into the agricultural content. I didn’t read the bit they printed from Obama a few weeks ago, but again it might have contained something they thought particularly related to something going on here. They just need to add more commentary and analysis when they inflict these propaganda pieces on the public.....