The great energy debate is getting more attention now than it seems to have ever gotten, which is great -- but it also means that things are getting a little confused. All kinds of people are weighing in from all kinds of corners and it's not easy to keep it all straight.
Here, we've collected samplings from some of the most recent big-name splashes in the energy debate. (Incidentally, there is even some debate over what the energy debate is -- does it occur between Obama and McCain? Between energy provider and consumer? Between homeowner and surge protector? Important distinctions, all!)
Yeah, it was only a matter of time after Obama said certain people "take pride in being ignorant" before we were likely to find a video of Paris Hilton talking about the environment. The video is the second time a Hilton has criticized the McCain's recent "celeb" attack ad, but it also entertains.
In the video, Paris feigns ignorance of such intricacies of the presidential campaigns as the candidates names, says she's glad to have been included in McCain's attack ad because it means she must be running for president and promises to reveal her energy plan -- which she does -- just after she reads up on where she can fly to get the best tan. Watch it here.
What's the opposite of a Paris Hilton environment video? We suppose it would be the well-known New York Times environment blogger annotating Obama's energy speech. The insights are very non-partisan and downright pessimistic at times, not of Obama's energy plan and not of McCain's, but more of the difficulty of affecting a real energy revolution in the United States whatsoever. Take, for example, Revkin's note on the Obama passage here:
From the Obama speech: So when Senator McCain talks about the failure of politicians in Washington to do anything about our energy crisis, it's important to remember that he's been a part of that failure. Now, after years of inaction, and in the face of public frustration over rising gas prices, the only energy proposal he's really promoting is more offshore drilling -- a position he recently adopted that has become the centerpiece of his plan, and one that will not make a real dent in current gas prices or meet the long-term challenge of energy independence.
[Andy Revkin - Congress will probably remain the biggest hurdle for the energy policies of either Mr. McCain or Mr. Obama. Experts say the deeply embedded nature of hidden and not-so-hidden subsidies for the fuels of convenience, coal and oil, was built by both Democrats and Republicans. Former President Bill Clinton touches on this hard reality in a video interview from last year.]
The Wall Street Journal's Environmental Capital blog rounds up the rest of the voices and opinions of late, ranging from McCain's renewed call for nuclear power to unfaltering proponents of carbon taxes to investing in energy. Click through for their roundup:
T. Boone Pickens' plan is a boondoggle, argues Holman Jenkins in the WSJ (sub reqd.). But not because he might get rich--the billionaire would get rich from realistic, achievable plans, not half-baked slogans, he argues. In any event, if the goal is to promote renewable energy, carbon taxes work better than subsidies, notes R-Squared. And even though both candidates are determined to press ahead with cap-and-trade schemes, Clive Crook says he's not giving up on his carbon-tax dream.