In Defense of Oil
Oil is tied to so many controversial issues today — global warming, our alleged addiction to oil, not to mention talk of speculators, “windfall profits,” “price gouging,” etc — that it is easy for people to think that we would just be better off without the stuff. Easy, but dead wrong.
This was the theme of my recent interview on The Big Biz Show (the first two segments), on the topic of “In Defense of Oil,” in which I challenged people’s negative attitude toward oil and explained how the benefits we derive from having a free oil industry (to the limited extent we have one) are spectacular and spectacularly undervalued—while the problems associated with oil (in particular, global warming and our “dependence” on foreign oil) are either overblown or misconceived.
As I mentioned on the show, August 27 is the 150th anniversary of the birth of the oil industry. That most Americans do not know this is a travesty, and reflective of how much we take the benefits of oil for granted. This is, after all, the industry that lit up America’s homes, created a generation of independent automobile drivers, and helps fuels the global economy. I’ll be writing more pieces in defense of oil leading up to the anniversary (you can also check out the links in the first paragraph, plus my essays on the history of oil here and here). You can find the audio of my recent radio interview here.