President Bush waited until he was about 7.5 years into his Administration to have his big push for offshore drilling and John McCain has pulled another one of his flip-flops to support this pandering to those frustrated by high gasoline prices. But will the proposal alleviate the current sting every time we have to put more gasoline in the tank. It seems Douglas Holtz-Eakin says no:
Douglas Holtz-Eakin, a senior advisor to McCain’s campaign, acknowledged in a conference call to reporters that new offshore drilling would have no immediate effect on supplies or prices.
Update: Some actual wisdom managed to slip past the editors of the National Review:
Calling for more domestic development and energy conservation, McCain sought to distance himself from both Barrack Obama and the Bush administration. In this he may have been successful, but he failed to outline a coherent and non-contradictory approach to energy … The biggest headline from McCain’s remarks was his call for more oil and gas development at home, “because the price of oil is too high, and the supply of oil is too uncertain.” Where McCain has been lukewarm in his support for domestic development in the past, he came out foursquare in favor of more offshore drilling yesterday, so long as coastal states get a share of the proceeds and are wiling to go along. This could free up as much as 18 billion barrels of oil and 76 trillion cubic feet of natural gas, based on current estimates, but won’t do much to curb the high price of gas.
I’m not endorsing everything that Jonathan Adler wrote – especially since he forgot to tell us that this 18 billion barrels is something that will take a long time to come to market and only if the market price of oil is quite high. But admissions from the National Review that McCain is flip flopping and that this Administration proposal will do nothing to change the current market price of gasoline is refreshing honesty from what had unfortunately been a rightwing rag in the past.