Presidential Politics on Drilling Oil

20 Jun

Thomas A. Firey, managing editor, Regulation, puts it about as finely as possible:

Concerns about the environmental impact of drilling are legitimate, as are concerns that the United States may be forgoing the use of a valuable resource by not drilling in these areas. Good public policy would examine the risks and costs underlying both of these concerns, and then make a decision (or perhaps a compromise) about drilling. However, this issue will not be decided in such a rational way. The debate will be dominated by two ideological camps – the “drill at any cost” crowd and the “don’t drill at any cost” crowd – and their ideological priors and political power will preempt any good policy discussion.

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