Comments By 60 Plus President Jim Martin, “Energy Day” Cannon Caucus Rm., May 22, 2008
“Washington, DC – Good morning, I’m Jim Martin, President of the 60 Plus Association.
To paraphrase Winston Churchill, I would like to have the following enigma, wrapped inside a mystery, explained: Why are U.S. energy producers not allowed to explore for oil and gas off the coast of Florida, my home state, while China and Cuba do so? For that matter, not allowed to explore onshore as well as offshore? We’re awash in oil and gas but exploration is verboten.
Is this a perverse policy or what!?
One political party says explore. The other says don’t. Congress had better get its act together. Senior citizens, the vast majority of whom live day to day on fixed incomes, are beginning to focus on the Florida folly I refer to. Look out come November if Congress doesn’t set aside its bickering and provide answers to the question I posed.
Most of my gray heads are military veterans, including this old Marine, and I can tell you they are (I’ll be careful with my language here) they are, shall I say, TICKED OFF to put it mildly. As a matter of fact, many of these old war horses are fighting mad.
Here we are in the same energy pickle we were in back in the 70s. No, I stand corrected, we’re in a worse pickle.
In the 70s, marked by long lines at the gas pump, President Jimmy Carter noted imports of oil were at a 37% high. His objective: to see that 37% did not rise another percentile. Well, it’s now over 60%, a dangerous, dangerous, in fact scary, almost suicidal, dependency on imports from countries that aren’t exactly our best friends.
We are the only industrial nation in the world blocked from developing our own energy reserves. Why is this so? Congress get your act together. This is neither a Republican or Democrat problem. It’s an American problem. Stop dallying. Fix it.