Think Freely Media presents Common Sense with Paul Jacob

With the financial crisis and bailout bill, our energy problems have been pushed off the front page. But they’re not gone. We still need energy to run our cars, homes, businesses, you name it.

So, I wanted to address a goofy argument that has been made a lot about drilling for oil in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, way up north in Alaska. Some say that we shouldn’t drill because it won’t do anything at all to help lower the price of gas now.

We’re continually told that it will take seven to ten years for the oil found there to be pumped out, processed and pumped into our cars as gasoline.

Not shocking. It’s true. Most things do take some length of time to fully accomplish.

Say you order an appliance. It’s days before delivery. Have an idea for a book? It takes time to write, edit, and publish it. You’ll have to wait to get your first copy.

You know, the price of food is up, too, in part because of America’s stupid ethanol policy, which we’ve talked about before. Apply the logic of anti-drilling advocates and we won’t plant crops anymore because, after all, no food pops into existence ex nihilo, instantaneously. It takes months before harvest. Even longer for the food to trundle off to market.

So, why plant? Why drill? Why buy that book, knowing that you can’t read it until you get home?

This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.

By: Redactor


  1. Dave Shaver says:

    We purchase most of our oil from Saudi Arabia. I read that we rely on that government for the information about their oil reserves. That is our only source for that information. I read that the information they have provided show over 250 billion barrels in their reserve. Experts are now saying that is inaccurate. So I asked a friend, who is a State Department consultant on the middle east and really knows what is going on, if that figure is true. He looked me square in the eyes and said “Ten years supply.” Is that not scarey? When opponents to drilling tells us it would be 10 years before we would see the benefits from our own oil do you think they know something we don’t know?

  2. Keith R. Casper says:

    7 to 10 years is a bit overblown. The original 750 mi Alaska pipeline was delivering oil from newly drilled wells to Valdez in less than 5 years from the date Congress allowed construction to start.

    Today, we need only to build a 75 mi pipeline to connect the new wells to the current pipeline which has capacity due to the slowing of the original wells. Additionally, we have better and more efficient methods of drilling.

    By far and away the largest obstacle to any solution to the energy problem is the U.S. government.

  3. Delta59Dawn says:

    It seems to me that back in the seventies, when I was a mere child in my twenties, the same subjects came up. Now, because all possible action was not taken then, in that oil crisis, we appear to be back in that same leaking boat. And I knew guys that worked on that pipeline in Alaska. They lost a few toes and fingers to the cold, but they helped our energy crisis back then, and I am sure it can be done again.

  4. John Hunter says:


    After reading much and doing some mental gymnastics, I have come to the conclusion that we are looking at an energy crisis beyond belief between 2015 and 2020. The amount of foreign oil available for the US to buy has begun to decrease and will only accelerate in its rate of reduction. Our domestic production is also declining. The only thing increasing is the amount of energy being delivered by renewables, but the amount of renewable energy available now is so small that it will take 15 to 20 years to become really significant in our total energy equation.

    We have two choices. One is to keep our oil companies restricted from drilling for significant additional oil supplies and suffering through 5 to 10 years of living on 50 to 70% of the energy needed to keep our economy running at just the level we are at today. The other option is to take all restraints off of domestic exploration and drilling and be able to skip through the tough years with only minor restrictions.

    John Hunter

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