Throughout this election season, we’ve heard constant talk from the mass media about the “Red” States and the “Blue” States, ad infinitum. Fact is, the mass media has the colors wrong. As we mentioned on “The Money Show” nearly a year ago, despite that fact that the Presidential candidates hadn’t then yet figured it out, the real color that will most likely decide the election in November is green. And not “Green” as in environmentally green (despite the fact that nearly every Tom, Dick and Harry, Inc. has been jumping on that bandwagon). Rather, the most important color in this election will be the “green” we see on our currency, since, barring (heaven forbid) another 9/11, what will decide this Presidential election is, as the now well known saying goes, “the economy, stupid.”
What’s more, in today’s economic world, one of the (if not the) most important factors related to the economy is the raw material needed to produce energy, specifically fossil fuels – oil and natural gas (and to a somewhat lesser degree, coal). Moreover, despite what the Federal Reserve believes (indeed, it seems they always believe this) the U.S. economy’s biggest threat is not inflation. Rather, what we currently have is a form of fake (or “faux”) inflation, caused by artificially high-energy costs. And these costs are artificially high mainly due to the fact that radical environmentalists now in power (think Nancy Pelosi, for example) won’t allow the U.S. to even come close to fully utilizing its vast stores of fossil fuel resources.
Yet, despite the fact that those in power continue to block our taking full advantage of these energy resources, polls continue to demonstrate that most Americans want to more fully utilize these resources. Here’s where Governor Palin comes in. She too wants to take advantage of these vast energy stores (a large portion of them in here own State of Alaska), and she is very well versed on the topic. Indeed, on the day Senator McCain tapped her as his Vice Presidential running mate, one of the cable news networks ran an interview “Nightline” had conducted with Governor Palin about a year ago (which, unfortunately, was “bumped” by another story and thus never aired on “Nightline”) in which she very specifically, meticulously and eloquently laid out how:
· Alaska had been let into the Union in 1959 (as the 49th State), in large part because of its vast stores of natural resources, as well as,
· Alaska’s promise (in order to be granted Statehood,), that because of these resources, not only wouldn’t Alaska as a State be a drain on the Federal government, but, just the opposite, Alaska as a State would prove to be a major economic boon to the U.S. in general, however,
· Despite its desire to do so, Alaska is not being allowed to fulfill that promise, because of the extreme environmentalist policies of those in power in Washington, despite the fact that,
· The oil and natural gas stores in Alaska that are not being allowed to be tapped are mainly under, apparently, less than 10,000 acres of wilderness land in a State that is comprised of millions of acres of wilderness land, and,
· Despite the fact that the “danger” tapping these energy resources would pose to the environment is nowhere near what the extreme environmentalists portray, since such “dangers” have been greatly lowered over the last couple of decades as a result of advances in drilling methods, as well as other technologies and safeguards.
What, would happen if these Alaskan oil and natural gas stores were allowed to be tapped? First,
· The U.S. would be able to become much much more energy independent for decades, thus greatly lowering the cost of energy (with a resultant major positive effect on the U.S. economy), while, at the same time,
· Giving the U.S. time to develop other, permanent and economically feasible long-term solutions to the problem of energy sources (wind, thermal, and, most likely, some form of hydrogen and/or a combination of the above, or possibly (though less likely) a technology we’ve not yet discovered, while also,
· Permanently changing our foreign policy paradigm (think Saudi Arabia, OPEC, and the middle east in general) to boot.
From the standpoint of the upcoming election, the bottom line is, all of the above factors – which Governor Palin has shown herself to have a very strong and in-depth understanding of – will play very well with the American middle class, no matter what color State they happen to live in. (As an aside, all of this is true not withstanding Governor Palin’s teen-age daughter’s pregnancy, which, the harder the far left wing Democrats try and make a campaign issue, the more that far left wing Democrats will simply prove themselves to be exactly what they really are – extremely foolish world-class hypocrites.)
Now, we here at “The Money Show” disagree with Governor Palin on a whole host of policies, and, as (the polls illustrate) so too do a large portion of the American public. However, in addition to her in-depth knowledge of the energy realities talked about above, in her relatively short time in office, Governor Palin has, it appears, proven to be a pragmatist (one example – while she’s a pro-oil drilling advocate, she nonetheless took on the oil industry and her own State Republican party…and won.) Which demonstrates not only pragmatism, but pro-consumer pragmatism. And, as we’ve noted on "The Money Show" many times before, being a “consumer” is the one and only “special interest group” that all Americans belong to. Which means that, no matter what State (or “state”) you target, Governor Palin’s pro-consumer pragmatism in general, and her energy related knowledge and pro-consumer pragmatism in particular, will appeal (and very possibly, greatly appeal) to voters in both Red States and Blue States, alike.
Does that mean that picking Governor Palin as his running mate wasn’t a risky move by Sen. McCain? No, far from it – it was and is an extremely risky pick. But, if the economy continues to be at the center of this increasingly close election – and most indicators say that the economy will be just that – if John McCain does win the White House in November, picking Governor Palin as his running mate may prove to be the self-proclaimed maverick’s shrewdest risk-taking yet.