Thursday, May 17, 2007

The Powers That Be...

In the most recent issue of The Economist, Chevron paid a pretty penny for a two page spread promoting their new website,

The headline reads, "There are 193 countries in the world. None of them are energy independent."

It goes on to claim, "...even regions with plenty of raw resources import some form of energy. Saudi Arabia, for example, the world's largest oil exporter, imports refined petroleum products like gasoline.
"So if energy independence is an unrealistic goal, how does everyone get the fuel they need..."

To me, this is a massive jump in logic. They are setting this ad up as an if-then statement, but they fail to connect the dots. Just because no country is energy independent today does not mean it is not a goal worth pursuing. And it certainly does not mean it is an unrealistic goal.

The ad also goes on to draw parallels between energy independence and isolationism. The decision to invest more of our government's money into R&D for domestically-produced energy like wind, solar, and even ethanol (yes, it has it's drawbacks, but it's still better than drilling) instead of subsidies for oil companies (Chevron) is not a move towards isolationism. It is a move towards improving our domestic capabilities and making them more attractive that their foreign counterparts.

In the end, I don't think this ad could ever convince anyone of Chevron's position (find more traditional fuels). It shows just how scared the company is about the fact that Capitol Hill is finally taking the term "energy independence" seriously. It really comes across as a desperate cry for help rather than a call to action.

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