A speech on Energy issues from 1977

Discussion in 'Politics' started by CaughtInTheMid, Feb 26, 2012.

  1. CaughtInTheMid
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    CaughtInTheMid Active Member

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    I know most of you won't read this (I'm not a big Carter fan either), but, I think it's important to post for those here who are young and have not yet decided that one party is good and the other evil. So, take a look at bits of this speech from 1977. Which parts do you agree/disagree with?






    "Jimmy Carter delivered this televised speech on April 18, 1977.

    Tonight I want to have an unpleasant talk with you about a problem unprecedented in our history. With the exception of preventing war, this is the greatest challenge our country will face during our lifetimes. The energy crisis has not yet overwhelmed us, but it will if we do not act quickly.

    It is a problem we will not solve in the next few years, and it is likely to get progressively worse through the rest of this century."

    "By acting now, we can control our future instead of letting the future control us."

    "Two days from now, I will present my energy proposals to the Congress. Its members will be my partners and they have already given me a great deal of valuable advice. Many of these proposals will be unpopular. Some will cause you to put up with inconveniences and to make sacrifices."

    "Imports have doubled in the last five years. Our nation's independence of economic and political action is becoming increasingly constrained."

    "The world now uses about 60 million barrels of oil a day and demand increases each year about five percent. This means that just to stay even we need the production of a new Texas every year, an Alaskan North Slope every nine months, or a new Saudi Arabia every three years."

    "We must look back in history to understand our energy problem. Twice in the last several hundred years there has been a transition in the way people use energy.

    The first was about 200 years ago, away from wood -- which had provided about 90 percent of all fuel -- to coal, which was more efficient. This change became the basis of the Industrial Revolution.

    The second change took place in this century, with the growing use of oil and natural gas. They were more convenient and cheaper than coal, and the supply seemed to be almost without limit. They made possible the age of automobile and airplane travel. Nearly everyone who is alive today grew up during this age and we have never known anything different."

    "...we must prepare quickly for a third change, to strict conservation and to the use of coal and permanent renewable energy sources, like solar power.

    The world has not prepared for the future. During the 1950s, people used twice as much oil as during the 1940s. During the 1960s, we used twice as much as during the 1950s. And in each of those decades, more oil was consumed than in all of mankind's previous history."

    "All of us have heard about the large oil fields on Alaska's North Slope. In a few years when the North Slope is producing fully, its total output will be just about equal to two years' increase in our nation's energy demand."

    "One choice is to continue doing what we have been doing before."

    "If we do not act, then by 1985 we will be using 33 percent more energy than we do today."

    "Supplies will be uncertain. The cost will keep going up. Six years ago, we paid $3.7 billion for imported oil. Last year we spent $37 billion -- nearly ten times as much -- and this year we may spend over $45 billion."

    "Unless we act, we will spend more than $550 billion for imported oil by 1985 -- more than $2,500 a year for every man, woman, and child in America. Along with that money we will continue losing American jobs and becoming increasingly vulnerable to supply interruptions."

    "Now we have a choice. But if we wait, we will live in fear of embargoes. We could endanger our freedom as a sovereign nation to act in foreign affairs."

    "If we fail to act soon, we will face an economic, social and political crisis that will threaten our free institutions."

    "But we still have another choice. We can begin to prepare right now. We can decide to act while there is time."

    "That is the concept of the energy policy we will present on Wednesday. Our national energy plan is based on ten fundamental principles."

    "The first principle is that we can have an effective and comprehensive energy policy only if the government takes responsibility for it and if the people understand the seriousness of the challenge and are willing to make sacrifices.

    The second principle is that healthy economic growth must continue. Only by saving energy can we maintain our standard of living and keep our people at work. An effective conservation program will create hundreds of thousands of new jobs.

    The third principle is that we must protect the environment. Our energy problems have the same cause as our environmental problems -- wasteful use of resources. Conservation helps us solve both at once.

    The fourth principle is that we must reduce our vulnerability to potentially devastating embargoes. We can protect ourselves from uncertain supplies by reducing our demand for oil, making the most of our abundant resources such as coal, and developing a strategic petroleum reserve.

    The fifth principle is that we must be fair. Our solutions must ask equal sacrifices from every region, every class of people, every interest group. Industry will have to do its part to conserve, just as the consumers will. The energy producers deserve fair treatment, but we will not let the oil companies profiteer.

    The sixth principle, and the cornerstone of our policy, is to reduce the demand through conservation. Our emphasis on conservation is a clear difference between this plan and others which merely encouraged crash production efforts. Conservation is the quickest, cheapest, most practical source of energy. Conservation is the only way we can buy a barrel of oil for a few dollars. It costs about $13 to waste it.

    The seventh principle is that prices should generally reflect the true replacement costs of energy. We are only cheating ourselves if we make energy artificially cheap and use more than we can really afford.

    The eighth principle is that government policies must be predictable and certain. Both consumers and producers need policies they can count on so they can plan ahead. This is one reason I am working with the Congress to create a new Department of Energy, to replace more than 50 different agencies that now have some control over energy.

    The ninth principle is that we must conserve the fuels that are scarcest and make the most of those that are more plentiful. We can't continue to use oil and gas for 75 percent of our consumption when they make up seven percent of our domestic reserves. We need to shift to plentiful coal while taking care to protect the environment, and to apply stricter safety standards to nuclear energy.

    The tenth principle is that we must start now to develop the new, unconventional sources of energy we will rely on in the next century."

    "Our energy plan will also include a number of specific goals, to measure our progress toward a stable energy system.

    These are the goals we set for 1985:

    -Reduce the annual growth rate in our energy demand to less than two percent.

    -Reduce gasoline consumption by ten percent below its current level.

    -Cut in half the portion of United States oil which is imported, from a potential level of 16 million barrels to six million barrels a day.

    -Establish a strategic petroleum reserve of one billion barrels, more than six months' supply.

    -Increase our coal production by about two thirds to more than 1 billion tons a year.

    -Insulate 90 percent of American homes and all new buildings.

    -Use solar energy in more than two and one-half million houses."

    "I cant tell you that these measures will be easy, nor will they be popular. But I think most of you realize that a policy which does not ask for changes or sacrifices would not be an effective policy.

    This plan is essential to protect our jobs, our environment, our standard of living, and our future."

    "We have been proud of our leadership in the world. Now we have a chance again to give the world a positive example.

    And we have been proud of our vision of the future. We have always wanted to give our children and grandchildren a world richer in possibilities than we've had. They are the ones we must provide for now. They are the ones who will suffer most if we don't act."

    "We can be sure that all the special interest groups in the country will attack the part of this plan that affects them directly. They will say that sacrifice is fine, as long as other people do it, but that their sacrifice is unreasonable, or unfair, or harmful to the country. If they succeed, then the burden on the ordinary citizen, who is not organized into an interest group, would be crushing."

    Other generation of Americans have faced and mastered great challenges. I have faith that meeting this challenge will make our own lives even richer. If you will join me so that we can work together with patriotism and courage, we will again prove that our great nation can lead the world into an age of peace, independence and freedom."
     
  2. AVG-JOE
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    AVG-JOE American Mutt Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

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    It's pretty much same shit, different election - doing what's right by our grandchildren is impossible because of the lost profit in the short term.

    *sigh*
     
  3. uscitizen
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    uscitizen Senior Member

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    One reason Carter was unpopular is he told the truth and it was not what people or corporations wanted to hear.

    See where lies, spin and sugar coating has brought us?

    And partisan fools on both sides keep on believing them.
     
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  4. occupied
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    occupied Gold Member

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    If nothing else he was the only president that understood the true horror of exponential growth.
     
  5. uscitizen
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    uscitizen Senior Member

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    I think he understood the difference between real growth and leveraged gambling money growth.
     
  6. Truthmatters
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    Truthmatters BANNED

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    Yeap Jimmy is a good guy.

    He pissed off the Dem power structure of the time.

    They didnt help him because of it.
     
  7. CaughtInTheMid
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    CaughtInTheMid Active Member

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    it's too bad we didn't start long term planning back then. we would be a lot closer to telling the ME to pound sand.
     
  8. CaughtInTheMid
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    CaughtInTheMid Active Member

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    threads of racism = lots of posts

    this thread = 6 posts
     
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