New poll/Old poll

poll%20graphic%20correct%20size.bmpThe new poll question is up:

Off-topic question this week: The spike in gas prices, plus the Senate's May 13 vote to continue blocking ANWR and offshore oil exploration, has provoked an American uprising, size and strength yet unknown. What is your opinion of domestic oil drilling?

I'll be interested to compare answers between Americans and our International friends.

On last week's poll, "Other" came in 1st, followed by Romney, who barely edged out Lieberman, with Huckabee coming in 3rd....

slide 1 5-31.JPG

But you'll see most "Other" votes came from overseas. I'd be interested to know what candidates they were thinking of. Click to enlarge to find your own personal brightly colored flag:

slide 2 5-31.JPG

slide 3 5-31.JPG

If you want to view these maps in more detail, click on "Comment" on the Vizu poll, You'll see this week's map, which can be manipulated and enlarged. If you want to check a previous week's poll map, after clicking "Comment," highlight "My Vizu," click on "My Polls," and then click on the poll question that interests you. You'll see the map.

As always, please make comments to either the old or new poll here, not at the Vizu website.


Comments on this post working now.

Posted by: Jill Stanek at May 31, 2008 3:37 PM

Domestic Oil Drilling = Pro-life Pulse?

Posted by: StudentFL at May 31, 2008 4:15 PM

Hey this is interesting:

Headline: "After Caesareans, Some Women See Higher Insurance Cost."

Posted by: SoMG at May 31, 2008 4:18 PM

Student FL said:Domestic Oil Drilling = Pro-life Pulse?

Note: it's called the "Off-topic" post of the week.

Posted by: Janet at May 31, 2008 4:21 PM

SFL, yes, every now and then I post an off-topic weekend question, and I think I've posted an off-topic poll question before. The domestic oil drilling topic interests me... a little change of pace is all.

Posted by: Jill Stanek at May 31, 2008 5:26 PM

Here is something vaguely on topic:

Did you know that sexual intercourse can cause pregnancy in the adult female?


There is a hilarious clip on youtube that I'm going to link to that discusses this- it's from the old British TV show "A Bit of Fry and Laurie" which has Hugh Laurie (from House) and Stephen Fry (from V for Vendetta) in it.

I think some of y'all might find it highly enjoyable.

Posted by: Rae at May 31, 2008 6:16 PM

Here is something vaguely on topic:

Did you know that sexual intercourse can cause pregnancy in the adult female?


There is a hilarious clip on youtube that I'm going to link to that discusses this- it's from the old British TV show "A Bit of Fry and Laurie" which has Hugh Laurie (from House) and Stephen Fry (from V for Vendetta) in it.

I think some of y'all might find it highly enjoyable.

Posted by: Rae at May 31, 2008 6:16 PM

Here is something vaguely on topic:

Did you know that sexual intercourse can cause pregnancy in the adult female?


There is a hilarious clip on youtube that I'm going to link to that discusses this- it's from the old British TV show "A Bit of Fry and Laurie" which has Hugh Laurie (from House) and Stephen Fry (from V for Vendetta) in it.

I think some of y'all might find it highly enjoyable.

Posted by: Rae at May 31, 2008 6:16 PM

Oh bloody hell- I'm so sorry about the triple posts!

If any admins are there, feel free to deletorate two of them- sorry!

Posted by: Rae at May 31, 2008 6:33 PM


Posted by: test at May 31, 2008 7:06 PM

There will be more drilling, but no matter how much, it's not going to make a big difference for the US as far as altering our fundamental supply/demand equation and our dependence on foreign oil.

It's been almost 30 years that the "ANWR" deal has been going on, and eventually the wells will go in.

an American uprising

You ain't seen nothin,' yet. The gov't should have had a decent energy policy, starting in the 1970's - that was the big wake-up call, yet it went right back to sleep, Democrats and Republicans alike.

There's a balance between preserving wildlife refuges, natonal parks, etc., and getting more oil, but as prices go higher sentiment is going to swing more and more to, "The heck with it - go ahead and drill."

Posted by: Doug at May 31, 2008 11:21 PM

It’s undeniable that the world faces a supply problem. Yet, we have folks in the administration, on both sides of the isle, calling on other nations to drill in new areas, open up new oil fields, and increase production capacity. And up till now, in our own nation, we will not drill off the coast of California, Florida, or in ANWR. And we haven’t built a new refinery in the last 35 years. How about that for hypocrisy!

I heard the analogy the other day that states if a 4’ x 6’ table was ANWR the amount of land we would disrupt, for drilling and transportation, would be the size of a dime!

I think these analogies really put this matter into perspective. Get ready for $10/gallon gas before 2010.

Posted by: Charles at June 1, 2008 8:59 AM

Charles - you're right that the amount of land that would be destroyed by oil drilling in the U.S. is small - but so is the amount of oil. We'd be destroying wildlife habitats for an insignificant amount of oil that will be gone before we know it. Trust me - knowing how much the Bush administration stood to gain from domestic drilling, if there was any possibility that those wells could produce a long lasting, worthwhile supply, they would have done it already. Its not like GW has ever given two craps about doing something popular.

Drilling through the entire planet for oil produces short term solutions and long term disasters - yes, gas might drop 50 cents for a few years, but then factor in inflation, taxes, and the cost of the drilling enterprises here, its not going to fix the problem. And a few years later, the supply runs low, the prices go back up, and we've permanently destroyed wildlife habitats AND increased pollution, AND we're back at square one.

Instead, I think the short term solution should be pressuring the oil companies - who are making ABSURD amounts of profit at the expense of people who have no choice but to buy the product, and the long term solution should be ramping up the development of sustainable technology - something I hope the next president, dem or rep, will focus on - since either way, his family isn't wrapped up in the oil biz.

Posted by: Amanda at June 1, 2008 9:10 AM

Charles, agreed that the actual amount of land disturbed would be tiny in comparison with the whole, but the amount of oil that ANWR would contribute to the US's supply is also very small (compared to our usage), so I'm undecided whether it would really be worth it to give up the "pristine" nature of that area.

In any case, I think the drilling will come, no matter what. Few Americans will ever go to ANWR and many are bummed out about prices, a thing which will intensify.

Good point about offshore - we will see more drilling rigs and platforms there too.

Also, on the refineries, no doubt - it's the "not in my backyard" syndrome, and to build a new refinery is immensely costly.

Diesel fuel, which, all other things being equal, should be as cheap or cheaper than gasoline, is now a Dollar more in the places I've been.

Almost everything moves by truck, and the price increases across the board haven't even worked their way through the system yet.

My pickup truck has a diesel engine, and yesterday I saw an "old" receipt from May 2, for $4.299 per gallon. Last two purchases I made were $4.999 and $5.019.

All those big tractor-trailers (semis) going up and down the roads out there, it's costing almost $1 per mile, just for fuel.

This energy thing is a big deal...

Posted by: Doug at June 1, 2008 9:20 AM

There are a few rigs off CA's coast now, too. In the 1990's I went out from the Santa Barbara area to work on some electrical transformers on them, roughly 12 miles offshore.

Amanda, oil company profits aren't "absurd." Percentagewise, they're having "good times," but other industries such as pharmaceuticals do it routinely, and the oil companies and their shareholders have had their lean years too, plenty of them.

What are we to do when a company has "bad times"? Subsidize it?

You are so right about sustainable energy, and we're really 35 years too late in getting going on it.

Posted by: Doug at June 1, 2008 9:27 AM

We do need sustainable energy, but we also have to be careful where we look for it. I know a few people were looking into the idea of using corn or other agricultural products. The downside is that the more you demand certain crops, the higher in price those crops will be as food, and the more land we're going to have to set aside just to grow those crops for fuel purposes alone. In some cases, growing will become more expensive than drilling. Although right now we really have no choice BUT to look for alternative options, we have to be very aware of the long term risks so we don't make the same mistakes again.

Posted by: Edyt at June 1, 2008 1:23 PM

What is your opinion of domestic oil drilling?

In the context of the text that preceded it, this is an unclear question. I have no problem with domestic drilling and production, in fact I encourage it. In fact, if we were solely using domestic oil right now instead of throwing our weight around on the other side of the planet in order to secure their oil we'd be far better off and a lot less unpopular. Of course, we don't have enough to maintain our current use of it, but we use it like imbeciles, and like we have a God give right to as much of it as we care. Forgetting about global warming, our greedy oil consumption is undermining our political and economic standing in the world, and giving strength to many whose interests do not coincide with ours.

We need crash programs both to develop alternative energy sources and to find and fund ways to conserve and use less oil. We need strict new building codes that mandate better insulation and higher efficiency appliances, dramatically higher CAFE standards, new zoning requirements that put people closer to the good and services they commonly use, so they don't have to get in their cars to get to them, and a tax structure that targets energy consumption instead of wages and retail spending.

Back to the subject at hand, though, while I encourage domestic and offshore drilling and production, I vehemently oppose permitting it the ANWR.

Posted by: Ray at June 1, 2008 1:23 PM

Amanda, the amount of oil in ANWR is estimated to provide the US with 10% of its daily consumption. Now, if you combine that with oil rigs off the two coasts, we could easily put the figure at about 30%, or more. Anyone want another $1.50 discount off a gallon of gas? And a reduction of food prices?

Amanda, you are also making an incorrect statement that the ANWR would be destroyed, as nothing could be further from the truth. Given the amount of land disrupted, and the advancements in drilling technology, tell me where the widespread destruction would be?

Amanda, while you may consider the oil companies to be making absurd profits, please consider two facts: (1) the oil companies lost huge sums of money when they expanded operations a few decades ago, so, at some point, they should be expected to receive returns on their long term investments; and (2) according to the Wall Street Journal, the largest investors in oil companies today are pension funds from unions—care to take away the pension and retirement savings from mom and dad?

If you look at the amount of oil we get from overseas sources, it only makes sense that we explore our own resources first. If we can get an additional 30% production in the US, then acquiring oil from south American and the middle east may not be needed—and that would be good for everyone.

Posted by: Charles at June 1, 2008 4:39 PM

While of course nobody really knows exactly how much oil is there, it looks like there'd be about one year's supply for the US or a hair more, given liberal estimates.

Posted by: Doug at June 1, 2008 9:36 PM

Doug, you cited an OPED piece as a source. Come'on now.

Posted by: Charles at June 2, 2008 6:48 AM

Charles, so what? In considering the USGS estimates, what fault do you find with it?

Posted by: Doug at June 2, 2008 8:19 AM

Being that it's an OPED piece, there is a certain bias that goes along with it. Now while the estimates may be valid, the sudy was done on 1998 -- a 10 year old estimate. Given that oil is not at $24, as the article suggests, the econimc esitmates are out of line with today's reality -- given the $125 price tag oil now demands. Moreover, what could be so wrong with getting another 9% of the US demand of oil online.

Posted by: Charles at June 2, 2008 8:41 AM

Charles, the OPED said it wasn't to argue for or against drilling, and that was dealt with:

The estimates of the technically-recoverable oil (i.e. ignoring the market price) in the 1002 area are as follows: There is a 95% probability of being able to technically recover 4.254 billion barrels of oil, and a 5% probability of recovering 11.8 billion barrels of oil. The mean expected estimate is of being able to technically recover 7.7 billion barrels of oil.

If anything, I see the "wrong" as being what are really at the most stopgap deals that won't change anything in the long run.

The way we are going, by the time ANWR really got online with oil production (8 years?), overall usage in the US would have increased by more than the 9% you mention (if ANWR would really supply that), i.e. on the basis of ANWR's addition alone, we'd be more dependent on foreign oil than ever.

I'm not really personally opposed to drilling, there. I see it as a given, in the future.

I've also been heavily invested in energy since 2000/2001, and am in no way saying the producers are "bad," per se.

Posted by: Doug at June 2, 2008 10:22 AM

Charles -

WHERE on earth do you get the idea that there is even an ESTIMATE that there is enough oil available domestically that "acquiring oil from south American and the middle east may not be needed—and that would be good for everyone" ?

You yourself stated that ANWR is estimated to have 10% AT MOST of what we currently use. Where did you pull the 30% from? And how would 30% sustain us without continuing to get the other 70% from foreign countries?

And yes, I do realize the land that would be destroyed is a small percentage of the US. But does that justify destroying it as a short term solution that would STILL fall short of solving the problem? Doesn't seem worth it to me at all.

Posted by: Amanda at June 2, 2008 10:42 AM

I read today that (while the Saudi Arabians are notoriously tight-lipped about production practices) satellite photos confirm the presence of more pressure-injection equipment in their oil fields.

They've had declining production and are injecting salt water to force up more oil. After awhile the salt water starts coming back, as well.

For now, they're holding to their story about reserves and additional production capacity, but those grow more and more doubtful all the time.

It hasn't happened yet, but I expect the word to finally get out that one or more of their big "elephant" fields has suffered a steep decline in production. Just a guess here, but I'd bet on a fast $30 or $40 added on to the price of crude oil, per barrel, roughly a 30% gain.

Posted by: Doug at June 2, 2008 12:20 PM

High fuel prices (and the stress of my job) have melted my head!

Posted by: Doug at June 2, 2008 12:37 PM

Amanda, here is a link: As you can see, we import huge amounts of oil from North America. The largest importing contires are (from most to least): Canada, Saudi Arabia, Mexico, Nigeria, Venezuela.

Now, if we gather 10% from ANWR, 10% off the east coast and another 10% off the west coast, and considering that 40% of our oil today is domestic, then we would only need to rely on the nations in North America.

Posted by: Charles at June 2, 2008 1:18 PM