Gore Tells Bush to be More Reaganesque

Peyton Knight approves of some of Al Gore’s advice to President Bush:

At former President Clinton’s annual “Global Clinton Initiative” summit Thursday, Al Gore called on President Bush to be more like the Gipper. Gore said:

I… call on President Bush to follow President Reagan’s example and listen to those among his advisers who know that we need to have binding reductions in CO2.

Gore was trying to employ Reagan’s support for protecting the ozone layer in an effort to nudge Bush toward supporting energy restrictions.

Well, the former veep and newest member of the Reagan fan club has some catch-up reading to do. Reagan knew a thing or two about energy policy, seeing as his predecessor had a disastrous one. As such, when Reagan officially announced his candidacy for President in 1979, he assessed energy policy pretty specifically – and pretty specifically repudiated the Gore approach. According to Reagan:

It is no program simply to say, “Use less energy.” Of course waste must be eliminated and efficiently promoted, but for the government simply to tell people to conserve is not an energy policy. At best it means we will run out of energy a little more slowly. But a day will come when the lights will dim and the wheels of industry will turn more slowly and finally stop. As President I will not endorse any course which has this as its principal objective.

We need more energy and that means diversifying our sources of supply away from the OPEC countries…

The answer, obvious to anyone except those in the administration it seems, is more domestic production of oil and gas. We must also have wider use of nuclear power within strict safety rules, of course. There must be more spending by the energy industries on research and development of substitutes for fossil fuels.

In years to come solar energy may provide much of the answer but for the next two or three decades we must do such things as master the chemistry of coal. Putting the market system to work for these objectives is an essential first step for their achievement. Additional multi-billion-dollar federal bureaus and programs are not the answer…

It is not government’s function to allocate fuel or impose unnecessary restrictions on the marketplace.

Let’s see. Invest in new technology, promote domestic production of oil and gas, increase nuclear power and refuse to restrict Americans’ energy supply. Sounds about right to me.

How about you, Al?

To contact author Peyton Knight directly,
write him at [email protected]


Labels: , , ,

The National Center for Public Policy Research is a communications and research foundation supportive of a strong national defense and dedicated to providing free market solutions to today’s public policy problems. We believe that the principles of a free market, individual liberty and personal responsibility provide the greatest hope for meeting the challenges facing America in the 21st century.