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Friday, March 04, 2005

Cuckoo Times Two

My previous post singled out a physics professor for trying to popularize or at least legitimize the theory of abiogenic/abiotic sources of oil. In retrospect, I should have added that too many popular accounts of science and technology fall way short in substance. Of course it has something to do with our limited collective attention span and publishers need for sales. Sadly, the professor's book probably fed the appetite of Art Bell fans, and thus likely had enough sales to keep the publisher happy.

Well, today we have the real cuckoos coming out to roost and displaying their own truly misguided theories. On his radio show, Sean Hannity said some incredibly stupid things about America's future energy independence. Baited cleverly by a guest caller (none other than Air America's Robert Kennedy Jr.), Hannity proceeded to list how the USA could lessen its dependence on mideast oil. Hold on to your horses, as he declared these as promising sites for oil independence:
  1. Coast of California
  2. Coast of Florida
  3. The Great Lakes
  4. "ANWAR" (i.e. Arctic National Wildlife Refuge)
  5. All of our National Parks

To back up his arguments, he declared that exploration rigs can coexist peaceably with wilderness. (I wanted to scream at the radio -- Dude, that's not the point! Hannity should really take a look at the wildlife sanctuary along the Orange County coastline of Huntington Beach. Lots of old stripper wells coexisting nicely with wildlife .... so where's our independence oh Great American Sean?)

He then tried to counter-bait Kennedy by discussing the Kennedy clan's NIMBY resistance to windmills off of Cape Cod. Of course, Kennedy did not take the bait and humorously hung up on Hannity.

So the #1 cuckoo Insanity Hannity next decided to ask his #2 ace-in-the-hole kook Newt Gingrich for his take on American oil independence. Without batting an eye, Newt spewt this inanity:
Having recently spoken with former Secretary of Energy Spencer Abraham, I believe that hydrogen-based fuel will be the answer to our future energy needs (Ed.: or words to that effect)
please put me out of my misery

Update: A caller to Hannity's show presented his theory on the popularity of SUV's and trucks. In his mind, the role of people like Ralph Nader and Robert Kennedy Jr. in introducing fuel efficiency standards such as CAFE on passenger cars caused consumers to flock to the behemoths. Without these eco-nuts applying their form of fascist indoctrination, apparently we would have long ago advanced to better fuel efficiency vehicles through free market mechanisms. (waves index finger rapidly in circles around ear)


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