Sunday, May 26, 2013

Something Easy You Can Do to Promote Fuel Competition in America

Sign up for Fuel Freedom's Facebook page and share their posts with your friends and family. Their posts are informative, thought-provoking, and almost always contain a link to more information.

Most people know almost nothing about fuel competition and what it will do for not only America, but for the world. Sharing these short, intriguing Facebook posts will trickle in enough information to make many people curious.

We need widespread support for the idea of fuel competition. We need people ready and willing to take action when an opportunity arises. What opportunities? When an Open Fuel Standard is introduced again into Congress — we will need people contacting their Congresspeople and urging them to co-sponsor the bill. When buying a new car, we will need people choosing cars that are not limited to petroleum only. When renting a car, same thing. When choosing a new fleet of cars for their company, we need people choosing cars that do not perpetuate oil's monopoly. When filling up at the station, we need people choosing the competition to oil.

But as long as most people remain in the dark about what fuel competition is and what it can do for the economy, for national security, for women's rights, for world poverty, for the environment, etc., then they won't take advantage of those opportunities and we'll be stuck in a one-fuel economy with all the negative consequences that brings about.

So please go here now and "like" Fuel Freedom's Facebook page, and share those posts on Facebook:

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Worldwide Change and the End of OPEC

Homegrown Defense is a great little book about the impact of the oil monopoly on national security in America. It's a collection of essays by different authors — Wesley Clark, Frank Gaffney, Gal Luft, Burl Haigwood, and Robert Zubrin. The following is an excerpt from Frank Gaffney's chapter:

Over time, the Open Fuel Standard would transform America's transportation sector from what I call "gasoholic" vehicles to "omnivores." As new FFVs become ever more widely available and older, gas-only cars are phased out, the United States would create a vast new market for fuels that can be produced domestically, in the case of methanol derived from anything made up of carbon. Among such plentiful sources are switchgrass and other plants, wood pulp, used tires and trash.

In this fashion, at the cost of just $100 or less per newly manufactured vehicle, the United States can, over time, wean itself from what amounts to its present, utter dependency on a single source of transportation fuel — oil — most of which is supplied by members of the OPEC cartel. This will have a truly revolutionary strategic effect, especially if, as a practical matter, the US Open Fuel Standard winds up becoming an international standard. That would seem to be a predictable result since car companies, having retooled their production lines to make Flexible Fuel Vehicles, will find it more economical to manufacture basically the same vehicles for sale elsewhere.

As a result, within relatively short order, something like 120 countries around the world, many of them currently desperately poor and unable to afford high gas prices, will be able to produce their own transportation fuels from native vegetation or other sources. Some may even be able to become net energy exporters, offering them a way out of their state of impoverishment.

The result will be the end of OPEC's monopoly and, perhaps, of the cartel itself.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

The Oil Monopoly Causes Mental Illness

I was talking with the director of a large mental health hospital a few months ago. They had just finished building a new wing of the hospital, and he said they've been extremely busy since the Great Recession began. He told me something I've never heard before — recessions always initiate a steep rise in mental health problems.

I must have looked surprised. He explained, "Well, people lose their jobs, which causes stress, and sometimes they lose their houses too. Under the strain, couples get divorced. Depression and anxiety increase. Anger and frustration rear their ugly heads. Sometimes people deal with it by drinking too much or taking drugs, and that causes even more problems. Sometimes the stress can trigger the onset of latent problems like psychosis and schizophrenia."

All of this got me to thinking. Since every time oil prices have spiked since WWII, we've had a recession in the United States, and since recessions cause more peoples' lives to fall apart, and since we could prevent rising oil prices from causing recessions if we had sufficient fuel competition, then it is not unreasonable to assert the following:

Oil's monopoly on transportation fuel
causes mental illness.

Or at least the oil monopoly plays a causative role in triggering a greater number of mental health problems than would otherwise have occurred.

So we can chalk this up as yet another good reason to stop the insanity of perpetuating a one-fuel economy. In addition to increasing our national security and boosting our economy, fuel competition can help keep our citizens mentally healthy. In addition to curtailing the money going to prop up dangerous women-oppressing regimes, lowering the amount of lobbying and influence the oil industry enjoys, helping to solve our garbage and landfill problem, helping people in developing nations rise out of poverty, and reducing the amount of pollution and greenhouse gases sent into the atmosphere, into the ocean, and into the ground, fuel competition can also literally make the world a saner place.

Friday, May 10, 2013

How Oil Prices Influence Employment

There is an insidious side effect of rising gasoline prices. As people spend more money on gas, they spend less money on other things, and that causes the loss of jobs.

“Since consumer spending is the main driver of the U.S. economy,” says Mark Cooper, Research Director of the Consumer Federation of America, “when speculators, oil companies and OPEC rob consumers of that much spending power, the inevitable result is a dramatic reduction of economic activity and employment.”

In Cooper’s study of the effect of oil prices on jobs, he discovered that every time oil prices have spiked since World War II, we’ve had a recession in America. In his study, he showed that because oil was about $30 a barrel higher than “costs or historic trends justify,” gas prices rose by a dollar a gallon in one year (from the summer of 2010 to the summer of 2011), which drained about 200 billion dollars from the economy. This is about two percent of consumer spending. That doesn’t seem like much, but two percent less spending (200 billion dollars) created the loss of hundreds of thousands of jobs.

Another way to look at it is that because most of our cars are not warranted to burn anything but gasoline, we imported about $500 billion dollars per year of oil, sending that money out of the country. That would have paid five million workers $100,000 a year! But the money leaving our country just leaves — doing nothing for us. If the same money was paid to workers here, it would have a huge ripple effect in our economy because that money would then be used to buy other goods and services in America.

- Excerpted from the book, Fill Your Tank With Freedom.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Sustainable Competition

"We need a competitor for oil," says John Hofmeister, former President of Shell Oil Company and founder and CEO of Citizens for Affordable Energy. "We need to open the market to replacement fuels like methanol, ethanol and natural gas. Competition will drive transportation fuel prices down, structurally and sustainably. These fuels are well within our reach, we can implement them into our existing system without the need to wait twenty years for fleet turnover. Fuel Freedom’s approach to opening the fuels market by breaking the oil monopoly is America’s next giant leap forward."

The above is excerpted from an article entitled, "Former president of Shell Oil calls for aggressive action on alternative fuels to break oil monopoly on transportation." Read the whole article here.

Watch a five minute interview with Hofmeister on CNN by clicking here.

Sunday, May 5, 2013

The Best Thing to Happen to Fuel Competition Since the Invention of Flex Fuel Technology

FFF co-founder Yossie Hollander at a TEDx talk.
If you haven't yet signed up for the email updates at Fuel Freedom Foundation (FFF), we urge you to do so now. You can and should also "like" them on Facebook or Google Plus.

FFF is exactly what we've been hoping for since the first introduction of open fuel standard legislation in 2006. They've got money and they've put together a team with excellent credentials to execute a carefully crafted plan to create fuel competition in America. They are quickly gathering allies and supporters. Their Facebook page already has over 50,000 fans.

Please stay connected to them and give them all the support and publicity you can.

Click here to read more about Fuel Freedom Foundation.

Click here to sign up for their email updates.

Click here to like them on Facebook.

Click here to like them on Google Plus.

Watch a video of FFF co-founder Eyal Aronoff by clicking here.

Watch very short video by FFF called "Beat the Oil Addiction" by clicking here.