Thursday, August 7

Economy of Thought

[Boone Pickens] says we spend $700 billion a year on foreign oil, which he calls a "transfer of wealth." But exchanging money for oil at the market price is an exchange of things of equal value. If we didn't value their oil more than our dollars, we wouldn't participate in such a bargain.

...these plans are fulfillments of ritual, not practical proposals -- and their authors indicate as much by the economy of thought they put into them.


Take the universal recrimination over our failure to impose tougher fuel-mileage mandates, in which Mr. Pickens also indulges. These complaints are lofted without the slightest attention to what we've actually learned in 30 years of such mandates -- that car buyers simply amortize their forced investment in fuel-saving technology by driving more miles. They buy more affordable homes farther from town; they commute longer distances to work; they trek across two counties to buy groceries at Wal-Mart rather than the pricey supermarket down the street

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