Gusher of Lies: The Dangerous Delusions of "Energy Independence"by Robert Bryce
Everybody is talking about energy independence.” But is it really achievableor even desirable? In this controversial, meticulously researched book, Robert Bryce exposes the false promises and political posturing behind the rhetoric. Gusher of Lies explains why the idea of energy independence appeals to voters while also showing that renewable/i>… See more details below
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Everybody is talking about energy independence.” But is it really achievableor even desirable? In this controversial, meticulously researched book, Robert Bryce exposes the false promises and political posturing behind the rhetoric. Gusher of Lies explains why the idea of energy independence appeals to voters while also showing that renewable sources like wind and solar cannot meet America’s growing energy demand. Along the way, Bryce exposes the ethanol scam as one of the longest-running robberies ever perpetrated on American taxpayers. In a new foreword to this edition, he shows how energy independence rhetoric was used during the 2008 election, even as the heavily subsidized ethanol business fueled a growing global food crisis.
With oil nearly $100 a barrel, everyone is clamoring for "energy independence" and a reduction in our reliance on foreign oil. Bryce (Pipe Dreams: Greed, Ego, and the Death of Enron) debunks this notion, asserting that none of the alterative or renewable energy sources currently hyped-corn ethanol, cellulosic ethanol, wind and solar power, and coal-to-liquids-will free America from imported fuels. He blasts Republicans, Democrats, the presidential candidates, Al Gore, Robert Redford, environmentalists, and energy analysts for misleading the public about our energy needs. Providing compelling examples, Bryce identifies numerous reasons why the United States cannot wean itself off foreign energy. He posits that we must accept the reality of an increasingly interdependent global energy market and shift our thinking from energy independence to interdependence. Meticulously researched with copious facts-nearly all footnoted-this illuminating and sometimes witty work offers another view of the current state of energy. Recommended for all libraries.
Eva Lautemann Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information
“It’s exhortative instead of purely informative. It hammers apart the idea that we really want to be independent of oil. Energy interdependence should be the actual goal for our energy system.”
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Meet the Author
Robert Bryce is one of America’s foremost energy journalists. He is currently the managing editor of Energy Tribune and a contributing writer for the Texas Observer. The author of Pipe Dreams: Greed, Ego, and the Death of Enron and Cronies: Oil, the Bushes, and the Rise of Texas, America’s Superstate, he lives in Austin with his wife, Lorin, their three children, and a hyperactive bird dog named Biscuit.
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The author's primary intent was to demonstrate why the US is dependent on foreign oil for its energy. However, the book only presents why the US is dependent on oil in general, and why alternative energy sources 'Solar, Wind, Nuclear, Biofuels' will be unable to effectively supplement our energy needs. The author misses the point when it comes to the USA's position within the global oil market. He fails to acknowledge that the majority of our oil imports come from Canada and Mexico, but instead focuses on the Persian Gulf states 'the current oil boogy-man'. If the author wanted to truly explain why the US and the rest of the world is energy interdependent- and that the notion of the US ever becoming energy independent is truly a 'Gusher of Lies', he should have presented some data on the world oil import-export market, costs of production etc. The term 'Comparative Advantage' is not found in this book. And that is a fundamental flaw. The US imports oil because 'based upon current oil prices' it is cheaper - in terms of both real and opportunity costs- to buy it from a foreign source than to produce it at home. Comparative advantage is the reason the US imports any number of products and oil is no exception. The author makes a good argument for why the US - and the rest of the world- will remain dependent on oil for its energy needs. But he fails to provide any argument as to why the US 'while it is certainly true' is, and will remain to be, globally energy interdependent.
Although I found most of Mr. Bryce's facts to be interesting, many of the conclusions he would have the reader believe remain unproven at the end of his book. I will resist the temptation to include my own political views, and simply state that Mr. Bryce's book is not for the uninformed. On one occasion, Mr. Bryce asserts, "Energy Independence is neither desirable, nor doable." While Mr. Bryce is entitled to his opinion, he failed, in my view, to sufficiently prove either point.
Never the less, Gusher of Lies is an important book for people to read. But it must be read in such a way as to filter through most of the book's unwarranted assertions. Doing so will allow the reader to absorb the important facts, while allowing the reader to make their own conclusions.
Straight talk about the oil dependency fiasco that Americans are being put through by the rhetoric of government, and so-called experts. Meanwhile the general population of America will be suffering for lack of quality air if we follow the fed recommendations. This book is a real eye opener, copies should go to all of Congress.