Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Taking Mountain Top Removal Head-On, North Carolina Considers Ban

Landmark Legislation Would End State’s Use of Coal from Controversial and Destructive Mining Practice

Mountain top removalThis just in: the North Carolina state legislature may take the destructive and despicable practice of mountaintop removal coal mining head-on by banning the use of coal obtained from mountaintop removal at any North Carolina coal plant. The Appalachian Mountains Preservation Act, introduced today by Representative Pricey Harrison (D-Guilford) and supported by our friends at Appalachian Voices, would be the first of it's kind in the nation.

From the Appalachian Voices press release:

“Right now, North Carolina is one of the nation’s top consumers of coal from mountaintop removal mining,” said Rep. Harrison. “That needs to change. Mountaintop removal coal mining presents a clear and present danger to the Appalachian Mountains, which are home to a vibrant and indelible culture, stunning biodiversity and enormous economic potential.”

Mountaintop removal coal mining is an extremely destructive form of strip mining found throughout Appalachia, with some mines as big as the island of Manhattan. Coalfield residents say that it tears apart communities, poisons water supplies, pollutes the air and destroys our nation’s natural heritage – while only making the climate crisis worse.


“The mountains being destroyed by mountaintop removal here in eastern Kentucky are very similar to the mountains of western North Carolina,” said Teri Blanton of Kentuckians for the Commonwealth. “Mountaintop removal is destroying our culture and biodiversity across Appalachia, and we are pleased to see that the people of North Carolina, who value their mountains, recognize the connection and want to treat all the mountains of the region with the same respect.”

Thirteen North Carolina power plants purchase coal from mountaintop removal mine sites, according to the records included in the My Connection tool created by Appalachian Voices, online at www.ilovemountains.org.

“With this landmark legislation, North Carolina has a chance to lead the nation in calling for an end to highly destructive and unnecessary mountaintop removal mining,” said Mary Anne Hitt, Executive Director of Appalachian Voices. “North Carolinians know we can find better ways to generate electricity.”

Sixty-one percent of the electricity used to power North Carolina homes and businesses is generated by coal-fired power plants. Nationwide, North Carolina is second only to Georgia in its use of mountaintop removal coal.

Head to www.ILoveMountains.org for more on mountain top removal and how to fight it.

image credit: www.ILoveMountains.org

Read more!

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Toll Brothers is Hungry: Eating Our Land and Spitting it Back Out

One of the nation’s largest developers is gobbling up our precious open spaces and spitting them back out in drastically altered pieces. Unfortunately, the McMansions Toll Brothers is planting on former farmland throughout Bucks County, Pennsylvania will only yield poor attempts to satisfy families' hunger for the American Dream.

Bucks County, Pennsylvania – known for rolling hills, quaint riverside towns, open spaces and working farms. Well, it used to be that way at least. Toll Brothers is now offering “luxury living you can't afford to miss!” on what used to be farmland next to my home. The necessary luxury they offer comes in the shape of 6,000 square foot luxury estate homes “exceptionally priced from the low- 800’s”well, more on the order of $1.6 million according to the saleslady I spoke with.

My moderately-sized house used to lie wedged in between, and across the street from, hundreds of acres of working farmland. Throughout my childhood, we had the suggestion of neighbors with a few scattered homes down the road.

As I grew up, however, I watched the farmland in our county be devoured by developers eager to capitalize on the landscape and location. Estate homes, villas, age-restricted housing, gated communities, luxury single-family homes, McMansions – these words entered into my vocabulary as a very young adult. I used to lie awake and wonder when we would get word that the farmland next to us would be turned into such a place.

The day of reckoning has come for the surrounding farmland. “The Highlands at Chapman’s Corner” is here, and it is impossible not to take note. Besides the seemingly endless road construction, approximately 20 single-family luxury homes now blight the landscape. They are oddly smushed together and seemingly self-conscious without any trees to soften their exposed edges. The houses come in a variety of flavors: colonial, federal, collegial, columnar, tudor, idiotic, and ugly. “The Highlands of Chapman’s Corner” represents conspicuous consumption at its finest.

I explored the model home the other day; read on to hear more and view what I saw, and get a sense of what the carbon footprint of this single-family home looks like...


The model home boasts six bathrooms, a gigantic master bedroom suite (see photo), three staircases, a three-car garage, thirty-foot ceilings, sunporches, offices, parlors, more closets than I could count on two hands, and the list goes on. The house literally screams quantity not quality as its poorly insulated windows climb the walls to the vaulted ceilings. The only part that appealed to me in the slightest was the wine cellar (and maybe the foozeball table). Perhaps the MOST ridiculous thing I spotted was this note on a coffee table! (If you can't read it, it says: "I am sitting in my beautiful sunroom, built by Toll Brothers, enjoying my serenity.")


The conversion of working farmland into roughly 20 single-family homes is an act of violence against our land. Giant dirt-movers arrived and systematically shifted every ounce of soil, re-organized and molded the landscape of the suburban American Dream. They formed artificial rifts and valleys without consulting the natural contours of the land or the flow of water after a fierce rainfall.

Such homes are also a slap in the face to millions of people in our own country struggling to house their families. Such a monstrosity could easily house more than twenty people.

Regarding the carbon footprint, it'd be a little challenging to get an exact number, but a Professor that Jesse Jenkins is working with provided an offhand estimate of what the energy consumption would look like. His estimate is that this Toll Brothers McMansion would consume five to eight times more energy than a typical single-family home in the region, just for heat! It would likely consume 25,000-40,000 kWh over the annual heating season; with energy at about 10 cents/kWH that would total $2,500-$4,000 just to the heat the house over the winter. If they heat with natural gas, it would probably be more.

These McMansions are not my dream with their insultingly large footprints, intercom systems, shoddy construction, and thoughtless placement. These houses breed discontent while promoting our endless cycle of consumer want, as evidenced by the unhappy couple I witnessed arguing in the living room of the model home over the size of their future abode.

When wealthy Americans travel the roads of more leads to more, we need more now, and excess, they may find themselves at the door of Toll Brothers. I just hope they have the sense to turn around before they invest their money in cardboard dreams.

Read more!

Monday, May 12, 2008

John McCain Stumps on Climate from Stumptown, Oregon

Presidential contender John McCain delivered a major speech today outlining his climate change policy from Portland, Oregon. Stumping from Stumptown (a Portland nickname harkening to it's timber industry past), Senator McCain detailed his plans to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, calling climate change a "test of foresight, of political courage, and of the unselfish concern that one generation owes to the next." The Republican presidential candidate called for a cap-and-trade system to reduce the country's greenhouse-gas emissions by roughly 2/3rds by 2050.

"Whether we call it 'climate change' or 'global warming,' in the end we're all left with the same set of facts," McCain said, before an audience gathered at a Vestas wind-energy training facility in Portland. "The facts of global warming demand our urgent attention, especially in Washington. Good stewardship, prudence, and simple commonsense demand that we to act meet the challenge, and act quickly." That they do, Senator McCain!

At the same time, McCain launched a new TV ad airing in Oregon and other states that presents McCain as the candidate ready to strike a reasonable balance in a debate where there's "one extreme that thinks high taxes and crippling regulations are the solution" on the one hand and those who "deny the problem even exists" on the other hand.

McCain will no doubt get plenty of praise from the mainstream press for this "maverick" break from President Bush and some notorious Republicans like Senator James Inhofe (R-OK/Exxon). Considering how low his fellow Republicans have set the bar over the last eight years, McCain does deserve credit for talking about the climate challenge, proposing mandatory emissions reductions, and using the stump to highlight his policies.

The reality though, is that far from striking some reasonable middle ground in a partisan debate, John McCain's new climate policy falls short of even the inadequate Lieberman-Warner bill being considered in the Senate in June.

More importantly, despite the fact that his campaign released principles for policy design today calling for "Scientifically-Sound, Mandatory Emission Reduction Targets And Timetables," his climate policy falls far short the emissions reductions recommended by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

The IPCC calls for 25-40% reductions below 1990s by 2020 and 80-95% reductions below 1990 levels by 2050 in industrialized nations in order to have a decent shot at stabilizing the climate and avoiding runaway climate change with catastrophic results. The climate proposal outlined by McCain today calls for reductions of just 0% below 1990 levels by 2020 and 60% below 1990 levels by 2050.

In short, McCain deserves credit for some "straight talk" on climate change, but words only go so far, and his inadequate proposal still dooms to planet to the fire, flood and famine-type consequences on the worse end of the IPCC's predictions.

His proposal also seems to put more attention to propping up the fossil fuel and nuclear industries with plenty of free emissions allowances and cash subsidies than on truly igniting a new clean energy economy and adhering to basic principles of fairness like making polluters pay to clean up their mess through an auction of emissions allowances.

Finally, I just LOVE the irony of Mr. McNoShow stumping on climate solutions at a wind turbine company while the future of the wind industry hangs on the production tax credit imperiled by none other than Mr. John McCain himself!

Senator McCain could have been the deciding 60th vote for a package of clean energy incentives, including a renewal of the PTC, not once, but twice already in both December and February... if he'd only bothered to show up to vote! Instead, McCain was a no-show each time, and the critical clean energy incentives failed by one vote. Makes you skeptical how serious Mr. McNoShow really is about the clean energy economy he talks about in his speech.

Without an extension of the critical renewable energy tax credits, the booming wind, solar and other renewable energy industries will slump, imperiling over 116,000 good American jobs and $19 billion dollars worth of investment at a time of recession - not to mention an entire year's worth of clean energy deployment (that'll really help hit those emissions reduction goals, Mr. McCain!). The irony of McCain's choice of photo op locations is extremely rich considering that the last time the future of the PTC was uncertain, Vestas cancelled plans to build a Portland wind turbine manufacturing plant that would have employed up to 1,000 workers! It doesn't get much better than that...

McCain vows that he "will not permit eight long years to pass without serious action on serious challenges." But, when you look at his record on energy policy, you see that McNoShow McCain has spent the last eight long years blocking efforts to spark a clean energy economy and tackle climate change.

Senator McCain has a long record of no shows, no votes, and support for fossil fuel industry special interests. A guy with a big fat 0% LCV score who can't even stand up to be counted on critical energy votes doesn't exactly strike me as the president who'll truly rise to the climate challenge!

Since it's late already and I've got little time to write more, I'll leave you with a collection of links to other reactions to McCain's speech:

  • Text of the speech at GristMill

  • Grist's David Roberts takes an advance look at the speech

  • Grist's excellent new political blogger, Kate Sheppard characterizes the Big Green Group's responses to McCain's speech.
  • Joe Romm doesn't miss the irony of Mr McNoShow McCain stumping at a wind turbine company.

  • Romm calls McCain's plan full of hot air at Huffington Post.

  • Energy Smart blogger A. Siegel says McCain can see the problem, but no solution.

  • The Wonk Room's Brad Johnson points out that McCain tries to have it both ways on climate but his rhetoric ends up trashing his own plan.

  • Brad Johnson doesn't miss the hypocrisy of McCain's choice of speech locations either.

    Read more!
  • Wednesday, May 07, 2008

    "Dear Sir or Madam" - The Latest Email Scam

    This landed in my email box a couple days ago. Looks like a good deal! (Check out www.GasTaxScam.com for more...

    CONFIDENTIAL/URGENT POLITICAL PROPOSAL

    Dear Sir

    First we must solicit your confidence in this issue. This is by virtue as being utterly confidential and "top secret".

    We are SENATOR HILLARY CLINTON, the wife of the former United States head of state, PRESIDENT BILL CLINTON, and also SENATOR JOHN MCCAIN, friend and associate of current head of state PRESIDENT GEORGE W BUSH. We got your contact through business inquiries as we were searching for contacts of a citizen who can help save our and our family's political careers since our country has been frustrating us.

    We are top officials of the United States Senate Government who are interested in importation of oil into our country with funds that are presently trapped in the FEDERAL TRANSPORTATION TRUST FUND dedicated to improving transportation. We wish to send this money to overseas accounts in the MIDDLE EAST but cannot due to restrictions in Congress Transportation Equity Act requiring that this money must be spent to build roads, bridges and high speed trains.

    If you accept we will deliver to your a sum of 30 DOLLARS in the summer 2008 in form of a "GAS TAX HOLIDAY". You will then deliver this money to accounts of our friends in Middle East by taking it to your nearby gasoline station where they have information to forward the money. Please supply your bank account, social security number, address and your vote in DEMOCRATIC PRIMARIES AND NOVEMBER GENERAL ELECTION.

    But bear in mind that this transaction requires absolute confidentiality. Do not visit WWW.GASTAXSCAM.COM where there is information about dangers of our proposal and a petition to stop us from this diversion of funds.

    PLEASE NOTIFY US URGENTLY OF YOUR ACCEPTANCE OF THIS PROPOSAL

    Awaiting your rapid response

    Yours truly

    SENATORS HILLARY CLINTON AND JOHN MCCAIN

    OK, I promise this is the last I'll post an this seriously Energy Dumb gas tax proposal thing, at least for now... This was too funny to NOT post though. Kudos for the folks at www.GasTaxScam.com for this excellent parody.

    Read more!

    Tuesday, May 06, 2008

    Barack Obama Shows Off His Energy Smarts on Gas Tax Holiday

    As the ad campaigns intensified before tonight's primaries, Hillary Clinton made the seriously Energy Dumb decision to promote a gas tax holiday as a way of demonstrating her supposed affinity for "the hard working American middle class." Too bad the gas tax holiday won't help anybody's pocketbook but the oil companies. I guess Mrs. Clinton missed the memo from every single energy and economic policy expert out there! (Seriously, every one of them!)

    While his opponent pandered for votes with empty promises of $30.00 in cash, Barack Obama, to his very strong credit, took the Energy Smart position and called the gas tax holiday proposal what it is: "a pander," a cheap trick to buy your vote.

    Here's Obama's clear, honest, Energy Smart response on the gas tax holiday (speaking on Meet the Press earlier this week)...



    Well said Mr. Obama. Well said. Bravo for making this Energy Dumb gas tax proposal into an opportunity to talk about the urgent need to free America from our oil addiction and spark a clean energy economy.

    I also think Obama deserves credit for openly stating he'd learned from a past mistake: Obama voted for a gas tax holiday in Illinois when he was a state senator and now openly acknowledges that was a mistake. The gas tax holiday was a failed policy in Illinois, and it'll be a failed policy for America.

    After 7 years of a President Bush who'll never acknowledge a huge mistake (*cough*Iraq!*cough), I welcome a president who learns from his errors.

    In contrast, Senator Clinton, who said herself that a New York state gas tax holiday proposal in 2000 would be "a bad deal for New York and a potential bonanza for the oil companies." She had it right then. Now she's get it wrong.

    Obama learns. Clinton panders. Which do you think is a more admirable trait?

    Related posts:

    -"Energy Dumb, Dumber, Dumbest" by A. Siegel at Energy Smart.
    -"Holiday on Ice - What North Carolina and Indiana Tell Us About Future Oil and Climate Policy" by Joe Romm at Climate Progress.
    -"Hillary Clinton Supports Seriously Energy Dumb Gas Tax Holiday" at WattHead.
    -"Dumb as We Wanna Be" by Thomas Friedman at NY Times.

    Read more!

    Monday, May 05, 2008

    The Three-Legged Stool To Reduce Transportation Emissions

    Posted by David J. Petersen. Cross-posted from the Sustainability Law Blog.

    According to the Urban Land Institute and Smart Growth America, transportation-based carbon emissions are a three-legged stool: vehicle fuel efficiency, the carbon content of the fuel itself, and the number of miles driven.

    Most efforts to reduce transportation emissions have focused on fuel efficiency. Lower-carbon fuels such as biofuels are also rapidly becoming part of our fuel supply. However, not much attention has been given to reducing the third leg – miles traveled.

    How do we reduce miles traveled? The classic approach is to improve public transit, but that is a long-term and expensive solution, and there is a limit to the number of travelers who will take public transit no matter how available it is. A more novel approach is to consider how land use planning impacts transportation. This means containing sprawl, of course, but it also means planning uses and zones in ways that mimic people's driving habits so as to reduce the miles necessary to complete vehicle trips. For example, placing more small-scale commercial centers in residential neighborhoods, rather than forcing everyone to shop at big box stores miles away, will reduce vehicle trips and the drivers won't even realize its happening.

    This isn't just theoretical; the land use advocacy group 1000 Friends of Oregon is leading efforts to set goals and adopt policies for land use planning in Oregon to implement these principles. You can read more in the Oregonian's editorial here.

    Read more!

    Hillary Clinton Supports Seriously Energy Dumb Gas Tax "Holiday"

    Hillary Clinton and John McCain support seriously Energy Dumb gas tax holiday

    There's Energy Smart, like Mark Udall and this slate of Energy Smart US Congressional candidates.

    Then there's seriously Energy Dumb, like touting a temporary gas tax holiday as an appropriate response to high gas and oil prices.

    Hillary Clinton solidly aligned herself last week with the Energy Dumb camp, vociferously supporting a gas tax holiday first proposed by Energy Dumber John McCain that amounts to blatant pandering for votes.

    This "quick fix" proposal, a three month suspension of the 18.4 cents/gallon federal gas tax during the summer "driving season," would at best save the average American about $30.00 this summer. That's right, Hillary Clinton and John McCain's idea of a solution to high energy prices is to mail you a check for half a tank of gas!

    So, is $30.00 enough to buy your vote?

    Don't expect to actually pocket those savings though. It's unlikely that a gas tax holiday will benefit anybody but oil companies, since laws of supply and demand will no doubt bring prices back up to pre-holiday levels as soon as drivers hit the road this summer (and you can bet that gas stations will raise prices by exactly 18.4 cents as soon as the "holiday" is over in September!).

    Of course Hillary proposes funding this gas tax holiday by ending unnecessary subsidies and royalty loopholes for the oil companies. OK, not a bad idea. If we're going to propose a gas tax holiday that only profits oil companies, we can at least fund it by taking money from those very same the oil companies. One problem: it's not politically possible! And Hillary knows it.

    Congress has tried to pass an incentive package for clean energy solutions funded by ending these oil company incentives three times already. Each time this truly Energy Smart idea has failed as it ran into veto threats from President Bush, filibusters from Senate Republicans and defections from "Oil Patch" Democrats. Clinton knows that. She was there all three times. Which means Hillary knows this gas tax holiday is an empty promise she can't deliver on!

    Finally, in order to view this gas tax holiday as a "fix," Clinton and McCain would like you to ignore ignore that this three-month holiday will do nothing to help lower oil prices beyond the summer, which are expected to remain high over the long term.

    Long-term problem. Short-term band-aid. Sounds like Clinton and McCain are proposing we take a shot of novocaine while we continue to saw our own feet off. Pretty soon we won't have a leg to stand on. Just like Clinton and McCain don't have a policy leg to stand on when they propose this gas tax "holiday."

    How dumb is this policy idea? Well, Huffington Post and the Washington Post both did some digging to find an energy policy or economics expert that would support Hillary Clinton or John McCain's advocacy of a gas tax holiday. What did they find? Zilch. Nada. Clinton and McCain are so Energy Dumb and Dumber on this, not a single expert wants to back them. Ouch.

    Clinton's response: "I'm not going to put my lot in with economists." Oh, ok Mrs. Clinton. We'll just forget all those experts. What do they know after all? They're just experts!

    Which brings me to the worst part in my mind: Hillary Clinton knows better! She's got the best policy advisors out there. They no-doubt told her this was seriously Energy Dumb, just like all those experts she discounted. She knows paying for it with an oil company "windfall tax" is politically impossible. She knows it won't help consumers pocketbooks and will at best help their psyche. Heck, even John McCain admits it's mostly a psychological benefit, not a real economic one (seriously, he said as much here!).

    And do you know how I know Clinton knows better? Because she told us herself!

    Back in 2000, when then-senate-candidate Hillary Clinton was running for office, Clinton lashed out at a New York state plan to temporarily suspend the state gas tax, calling it, "a bad deal for New York and a potential bonanza for the oil companies." Well said!

    Summary: Hillary Clinton is trying to buy your vote with $30.00 worth of empty promises that she knows full well are seriously Energy Dumb. John McCain is just happy to propose a psychological band-aid with no real economic savings for the American consumer.

    I know. The stupid. It hurts!

    And you wonder why people feel like politicians don't respect their intelligence! Good thing you can spot a gas tax scam when you see one!

    So, where does Barack Obama stand? I'll let you know with my next post (hint, he's pretty Energy Smart on this one)...


    p.s. I want to make it clear that I have yet to be particularly partisan in the Democratic presidential primary race, calling both Obama and Clinton out for supporting new uses of coal. That officially ended the day Clinton supported this seriously Energy Dumb idea. Sorry Clinton, this is just plain indefensible! You've lost the vote of this Oregon primary voter who just cast his mail-in ballot for Obama.


    Related posts:

    -"Energy Dumb, Dumber, Dumbest" by A. Siegel at Energy Smart.
    -"Dumb as We Wanna Be" by Thomas Friedman at NY Times.
    -"Udall Responds to Energy Dumnb Challenge from Hillary Clinton" at WattHead.

    Read more!

    Friday, May 02, 2008

    Udall Responds to Energy Dumb Challenge from Hillary Clinton

    [This is a guest post from "Energy Smart" blogger, A. Siegel. See http://EnergySmart.wordpress.com and http://a-siegel.dailykos.com for more of Siegel's excellent work.]

    Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton directly challenged Congressional members to go on the record either for her idiocy of a gas tax moratorium or against it (supposedly, therefore, for oil companies). Coloradan Senate candidate Mark Udall responded forcefully.

    Senator Clinton claimed yesterday that I either stand with her on this proposal or stand with the oil companies. To that I say: I stand with the families of Colorado, who aren't looking for bumper sticker fixes that don't fix anything, but for meaningful change that brings real relief and a new direction for our energy policy. We can't afford more Washington-style pandering while families keep getting squeezed.
    Hillary Clinton: Energy Dumb. Mark Udall: Energy Smart.

    Udall's full statement
    "There is no issue I have spent more time on in my public service
    career than working for real, responsible change in our energy policy
    – the kind that breaks our addiction to foreign oil and puts us on a
    path to greater national security, a stronger economy, and lower
    energy costs for our families. There is certainly no question that
    families are hurting with the soaring cost of energy and need relief.

    Udall is someone who understands and cares about energy issues. He is a leading light on this in the House and soon will be in the Senate. And, he is right. We need to develop and pursue a win-win-win policy to end the 'oil addiction' for these great reasons with the corollary benefit of turning the tide on that pesky problem of Global Warming.
    "The so-called 'temporary gas tax holiday' that Senators Clinton and McCain propose won't deliver this needed relief. This will not create the economic relief they say it will, because prices will continue to rise until we address the real source of this problem. We do need to provide immediate relief for families hard-hit by spiraling gas prices, and we can do that by demanding the President stop adding to the Strategic Petroleum Reserve. This will ease the production crunch that is causing these skyrocketing gas prices.
    No, the 'temporary gas tax holiday' doesn't achieve much of anything, does it, except pander to the worst nature of democracy. Hillary Clinton: Are you planning other bread and circus stunts?
    "Senator Clinton claimed yesterday that I either stand with her on this proposal or stand with the oil companies. To that I say: I stand with the families of Colorado, who aren't looking for bumper sticker fixes that don't fix anything, but for meaningful change that brings real relief and a new direction for our energy policy. We can't afford more Washington-style pandering while families keep getting squeezed.
    Real solutions rather than tactical pandering.
    "It is exactly the kind of short-sighted Washington game that keeps us from getting real results to our energy problem. Experts across the ideological spectrum agree that it will increase the deficit, drain money away from Colorado roads and bridges, and hurt the environment, all without actually making prices lower for drivers."
    No one, and we do mean no one, who knows these issues and is being honest is supportive of a gas tax moratorium. Presidential Clinton's pandering is undercutting the potential for long-term solutions.

    It is with an asterisk. Maybe. Just Maybe.

    * Hopefully, it will lead others like Mark Udall to seize the occasion to stand forcefully for sensible energy policy.

    Perhaps the nation will rally to the banner of real solutions.

    A banner carried by real leaders like Mark Udall.

    NOTE: Others across the blogosphere are speaking up with similar terms. David Sirota wrote Udall Takes Up the Challenge and Shows How It's Done:
    Udall, in other words, is taking a side. He had to choose between taking the side of Clinton panderers and the oil industry in his state, or taking the side of the rest of his state's population that has been suffering through crappy infrastructure thanks to Republican policies. He chose the side of the people.

    Note from WattHead blogmaster, Jesse Jenkins: Mark Udall isn't the only one calling Clinton out for her so-Energy-Dumb-it-hurts advocacy of a gas tax "holiday." In fact, Huffington Post and the Washington Post both did some digging to find an energy policy or economics expert that would support Hillary Clinton or John McCain's advocacy of a gas tax holiday. What did they find? Zilch. Nada. Clinton and McCain are so Energy Dumb and Dumber on this, not a single expert wants to back them. Ouch.

    See, also, Joe Romm at Climate Progress: Gas tax holiday, Part 3: It is cynical and indefensible no matter who proposes it.

    Finally, to his strong credit, Senator Barack Obama is also Energy Smart on this issue! He made this direct response to Clinton's ads blatently and desperately pandering for votes with empty gas tax holiday promises airing now in the remaining primary states:



    Bravo to Obama for taking the right stand! Even more so for taking the right stand even though it may cost him votes.

    I have yet to be particularly partisan in this race, calling both Obama and Clinton out for supporting new uses of coal. That ends today. Sorry Clinton, this is just plain indefensible! You've definitely lost the vote of this Oregon primary voter.

    Read more!