"The view was to look to alternatives and try to become more dependent on the Midwest than the Middle East. I mean, that was the theory. Obviously, sometimes there are unforeseen or unintended consequences of actions," Mr. Hoyer, Maryland Democrat, told reporters yesterday.
Only a year ago, Congress and President Bush seemed to view ethanol as a near magic solution to the nation's dependence on oil and counted on it to make a dent in greenhouse gas emissions. Republicans and Democrats together piled up the incentives and mandates that pushed farmers into planting corn for ethanol and consumers into buying gasoline blended with it.
"This is a classic case of the law of unintended consequences," said Rep. Jeff Flake, Arizona Republican, who introduced a bill this week to end the entire slate of federal supports, including the mandates for blended gasoline, the tax credits for ethanol producers, and tariffs that keep out cheaper foreign ethanol.
"Congress surely did not intend to raise food prices by incentivizing ethanol, but that's precisely what's happened. A jump in food prices is the last thing our economy needs right now," Mr. Flake said.
If they are so terribly dumb that they understood nothing about ethanol, and had no idea what they were doing a year ago, maybe they should be prohibitted from passing any legislation at all.
It's incredible that they adopted this dumb legislation without the least study of the effects.
Throw out the bums.
5 Myths About Breaking Our Foreign Oil Habit By Robert Bryce:
The new energy bill requires that the country produce 36 billion gallons of biofuels per year by 2022. That sounds like a lot of fuel, but put it in perspective: The United States uses more than 320 billion gallons of oil per year, of which nearly 200 billion gallons are imported. So biofuels alone cannot wean the United States off oil. Let's say the country converted all the soybeans grown by American farmers into biodiesel; that would provide only about 1.5 percent of total annual U.S. oil needs. And if the United States devoted its entire corn crop to producing ethanol, it would supply only about 6 percent of U.S. oil needs.