Will Colorado Media Do Its Job? Republican Rhetoric Meets Reality

( – promoted by Colorado Pols)

By now it is a tired refrain, that Republican candidates apparently still view as golden, to bemoan the death of the oil and gas industry in Colorado.  They then lay the perennial and predictable problems wrought by the cyclic and highly volatile nature of commodity economies at the feet of today’s Democrats, from Governor to President to Representatives and Legislators and County Commissioners.

For the most part media in Colorado report this without providing much context or analysis to help the reader judge its veracity. And so, for some or more, falsehoods become established as fact.

Thus GOP candidates, from wannabe governors to wannabe congressmen,  are free and clear to cry about the plight of the oil and gas industry–still among the world’s richest–whenever jobs or the economy are mentioned without fear of having their flaming rhetoric hosed down with reality.

Some of the ‘New Media’ journalistic outlets, like Colorado Independent and Real Vail provide in-depth reporting that makes these types of connections. But far to often stories print what these politicians say without an apparent second thought.    

So you have Cory Gardner (gunning to replace Betsy Markey in Congress), portraying the new rules as “driving oil and gas business out of the state.”

Republican Rep. Cory Gardner of Yuma said the oil and gas industries have created 7,000 jobs and $23 billion in revenue annually for Colorado, yet as a result of state regulations on the industry, Weld County will lose 50 percent of its revenue from the industry.

“We plucked the goose that laid the golden egg,” said Gardner, who proposed leaving options on the table for energy rather than removing them.

The “job killing rules” as Gardner referred to the state regulations, are driving oil and gas business out of the state.

Meanwhile an erstwhile energy giant lobbyist, Scott McInnis, has made it the center of his ‘Just scream No!’ campaign, until Ritter pulled the carpet out. Still as McInnis 2.0 reboots, I doubt it’ll abandon this industry cause now, which the franchise has long benefitted from supported.

And while GOP candidate from big to small all find ample opportunity to parrot this nonsense, over and over, and which most newspapers dutifully transcribe report, it is more difficult to find analysis that considers the merit of these claims.  

Such analysis would provide a nice service, perhaps befitting what was once nobly called the ‘Fourth Estate,’ in helping to hold candidates accountable to the meaning of their words.

Consider this article in the Aspen Times family of papers, which provides some comparisons between 2008 and 2009 for Gasfield Garfield County:

According to the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission website, Garfield County produced more than 390 billion cubic feet (bcf) of natural gas through the month of October 2009, compared to more than 520 bcf for all of 2008, according to the Department of Natural Resources.

The number of well permits issued in Garfield County in 2009, according to the commission, was 1,981, compared to 2,888 issued in 2008.

This is good information (specific data) from a reliable source (the state) and easily verifiable (available to all members of the media and public).  

News media should use this type of information in their coverage of other stories, such as this one or this Longmont Times-Call article:  

McInnis contended that Ritter administration policies have cost even more Coloradans their jobs than would have been lost during the national recession.

McInnis cited recently enacted oil and gas rules that he called “the toughest anti-drilling regulations in the United States.”

The oil and gas industry historically provides tens of thousands of Colorado jobs, McInnis said, but he charged that Ritter “decided to shove them out the door.”

How difficult would it be for reporters to do their jobs and not just scribble down whatever a candidate says?  Would it help remove the utter nonsense and falsehoods that permeate political discourse, or at least provide a filter?  To often these questions are of the hypothetical.

Some of you might have caught this diary that included an apparent email exchange with Dan Maes, who was arguing based on an industry report and rig numbers that Colorado’s oil and gas regulations have resulted in a 70% decline in industry activity.  

Here is what I noted, in the comments then, and which might have been a useful line of questioning for the candidate directly:

In order to assume a direct correlation between the oil and gas regulations and rig count in CO v. rig count nationwide during whatever period, one would have to isolate the regulations as the only differing factor.

That is unadulterated silliness, and one would hope that someone running as the savvy businessman would get this.  

Here are some of the factors that Mr. Maes would have to account for, and neutralize, in order to make his tidy little comparison:

Other plays–their size, availability, accessibility and infrastructure; specific return per tcf of other plays v. the Piceance.

World commodity prices–NatGas is glutted on the market, especially in North America.

Recession–Credit is hard to come by, especially for development that lacks the pipelines and other infrastructures, that have further to go to market, etc.

I am glad to see the rise of ‘New Media’–from Jon Stewart to Colorado Pols–but until mainstream institutions take this job back upon themselves, I worry that politics will continue to be populated by the tragically uniformed and the cynically manipulative.  

The facts are pretty clearly spelled out in the Aspen Times piece, but it doesn’t mention any tie in with the political rhetoric polluting the issue in most other articles, nor do those other–more plentiful–articles mention the facts reported here, that we easily distill with a little figuring:

Twitty’s attempt at math

Projecting 468 bcf produced gas in 2009-derived by dividing 390 by ten (months) and then adding (39*2 months) to arrive at an annualized number–then dividing that by 520 bcf (2008 production) * 100 to show that:

Colorado produced about 90% of the natural gas in 2009 as it did in 2008.

For development (rather than production) we can do similar simple calculations (Twitty’s limit) to compare the number of drilling permits issued.  Here we find that:

68% of the number of drilling permits was issued by the state in 2009 as were issued in 2008, down about 31%.

Thus Colorado’s production and development figures are down less than the overall decrease in commodity prices. Can we now expect Scott McInnis or Cory Gardner to consider these numbers, Colorado’s actually production and development figures, before spouting off to garner a few more votes?  If no one calls them on it–yes.

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  1. allyncooper says:

    It’s long been a beef of mine that the mainstream press does little independent analysis or investigations of purported “facts” spouted off by various “experts” or politicians. Too often these statements are simply parroted and then get treated as fact. The old saying “don’t confuse me with the facts” certainly applies here.

    Your extrapolations for 2009 vs. actual 2008 obviously are completely in line with the commodity prices given the recession and the current glut of natural gas. It’s surprising to me they’re not down even more.  However, I don’t see McInnis or Gardner talking about that, because its obviously at odds with their campaign talking points.

    An area I have some expertise in is the S & L scandal in the 1980’s which in addition to a taxpayer bailout of about $ 500 billion, plunged the Denver real estate market into a 5 or 6 year depression. I worked for one of the developers who was involved in the scandal, and after the fact was involved in a lawsuit and hence did a significant amount of investigation. While its too involved to go into here, what I discovered was shocking, but left largely unreported by the press.

    The developers and others who were in on the scandal blamed the “oil bust” for the collapse of the real estate market. Of course this was repeatedly parroted by the press, so it must be true right?

    Not so fast. Knowing what I learned, I know the “oil bust” theory was smoke and mirrors – that the predominate cause of the collapse of the real estate market was the S & L scandal.

    From an article in the Denver Business Journal, “The lessons of an S & L called Silverado, 12/4/1998

    “At the time of the failure of Silverado, most people blamed the collapse of oil prices for the bank’s demise. However economists like Tucker Hart Adams of US Bank believe that it was not oil prices but reckless loans to developers that put our economy on the rocks.”

    Tucker Hart Adams has also been the chief economist for the Legislature, in addition to other official posts, and is generally recognized as the most prominent economist in the state.

    And its also a fact that the mainstream press, which relies heavily on advertising revenues from the housing and real estate development interests, were guilty of “benign neglect”, to say the least, in questioning the real causes of the S & L scandal and resulting real estate collapse.

    The reality is, the question might be not “will Colorado media do its job”? but rather can the “mainstream” media do its job. The Rocky is of course gone, and the Post may not be far behind. We’ve seen a significant cutback of traditional media reporters at the statehouse, and most print media organizations are in a survival mode. Frankly, I don’t see these entities even being around to “take back” their responsibilities of keeping the citizenry informed of the facts (and the truth).

    I believe the answer is in the “new media” model as you refer to. What form this takes, and how it will be played out is still very undefined.

    I am currently developing a business plan for an online publication “The Denver Real Estate News”. I hope to launch this publication within the next month or two. One thing for certain, its not going to be your mother’s newspaper. Stay tuned.

  2. MADCO says:

    I still want to understand the actual financial numbers of Colorado’s differentiated basis, or whatever ardy was talking about.

    Likewise, I have the nmotion our severance taxes- net, net – are average to low. Lower than Wyoming. And way, WAY lower than those socialists in Alaska with their check to every resident.

    • ardy39 says:

      is basically the discounted price of natural gas produced in CO because of the distance and difficulty in transporting the gas to markets.

      Basically, it costs money to transport gas. If the price of gas + the price for transporting results in an uncompetitive price for the gas at markets, either the gas doesn’t get shipped, or somebody has to come down in their prices. In the past, this has generally meant that prices for gas from CO are heavily discounted.

      Only about 1/3 of the gas produced in CO is actually delivered to consumers in CO. The rest is exported. If there is insufficient pipeline capacity to deliver the gas, then the owners of the pipelines can name their price for taking excess production off your hands. Sometimes this means they pay pennies for volumes that are being sold on the NYMEX spot market for several dollars or more.

      The COGCC used to carry monthly updates on gas prices from the principle 3 CO production areas and compared these to a NYMEX Henry Hub price. For some reason, they stopped doing this in 2007. you can find some of these older reports here. The 06-07 report is here.

      That’s about all I can do for now. I can’t find the link to the primer that made sense to me a couple years ago. Hope this helps. If you’ve got follow up questions I may be able to get to them later next week.

  3. ardy39 says:

    CT,

    I appreciate your straight forward estimating attempts, but there are a few things to take into account.

    One of these is the delay between gas production, gas sales, reporting of gas sales and the uploading of gas sale data to the COGCC website. All together, there ought to be a total delay of 2-3 months. In reality, the lag can be years (even the 2007 data is still being revised regularly (by very small amounts), and the 2008 data is pretty steady, but still seeing regularly updates). Thus, the 2009 data for gas sales statewide is very much a work in progress. Data for gas sales in Garfield County generally lags even farther behind the rest of the state, but for 2009 it seems to be more up to date than normal.

    Thus, I would not use any gas sales data more recent than from August 2009. Thus, using your methods, Garfield Cty produced 360 bcf through 8 months. This results in a projection of approx. 540 bcf for 2009. Nearly a 4% INCREASE in production over its 2008 production of 520 bcf.

    (Pdf reports with 2009 data and 2008 data available via links)

    This jives well with the nearly 7% increase in natural gas production in 2009 vs 2008 projected by the COGCC in this presentation (see slide 15)

    So, despite all the gnashing of teeth, the O&G industry is doing just fine in CO. Sure, all the contractors with no job security and no benefits were shown the door, but the folks making big money are still making big money.

    • ajb says:

      Doesn’t gas use go up in the Fall and early winter? If so, the extrapolating the production based on the previous few months would be a conservative estimate, wit ht he tru amount likely higher.

      And I’m not sure about this, but it seems like it’s been a colder-than-normal winter thus far.

      • ardy39 says:

        In the US we have pretty ample storage capability for natural gas. This means that gas can be produced pretty much continuously — in the summer put the excess into storage and during the winter supplement new production with the stored gas.

        If you look at the graphs of production for Colorado, there isn’t much of a seasonal trend. Up through 2006 the most obvious “trend” (besides gas production is going up) was that months with 31 days have more production than months with 30 days!

        In 2007, and even more so in 2008, monthly production started fluctuating more dramatically.

  4. ardy39 says:

    More interesting tidbits about O&G activity freely available from the COGCC:

    Although the number of drilling permits that were submitted and approved has declined from 08-09, the number approved in 2009 still far exceeds the actual number of wells that are drilled by 42% (which is down from 2008 where the number of approved permits exceeded the number of wells actually brought online by 226%). Recall that the unused permits from 2008 were largely still valid through much of 2009. Permit data in the graph on slide 3 here.

    Not immediately obvious (see slide 12 from the same presentation linked above) is the fact that O&G has brought MORE wells into production in 2009 than in 2008.

    What? That can’t possibly be true, can it? Yes.

    2008

    The net increase in active wells rose from 33,815 to 37,359 (an increase of 3544 active wells).

    2009

    The net increase in active wells rose from 37,359 to ~40,998 (an increase of 3639 active wells). (the approx. nature of the 40,998 is because some of this total in slide 12 includes a few wells from the first week of 2010)

    So, new wells brought into production increased from 2008 to 2009. Gas production is projected to increase from 2008 to 2009.

    Aren’t facts fun?

    • Duke Coxdukeco1 says:

      for all the research presented here . And thanks to you CT for your excellent post.

      There is an old joke:

      Do you know how to tell if an oil man is lying?…his lips are moving.

      The truth is anathema to O&G people and their toadies in government. That is the reason why you will be fired quicker for being caught with a camera on a wellsite than being caught with a gun.

      The saddest part is how the Big Money causes so many to enter into the fantasy world of O&G spin. I know several people who have sold their soul to the driller.  

  5. Walter Mitty says:

    …the Supremes rule as expected next week on Citizens United.  Then, the gates will be open for the oil and gas industry to contribute directly to political campaigns.  Of course, so will the unions and the environmental organizations (since corporations will now have the same free speech rights as individuals), but I wonder who has more money?

  6. bmenezes says:

    You’re hitting on a very important aspect of why many in the Colorado media fall short of providing the type of information their readers and viewers need: The lack of critical thinking and critical questioning.

    Critical thinking for a journalist is not “criticism” or negativity. It means “thinking” to ask the obvious question and then seeking fact-based information to answer that question. Does a lawmaker claim the oil and gas industry is being crushed by new regulations? Then do 15 minutes of legwork through the amply available information on local industry trends (permit applications, permits granted, actual production, etc.) and macro industry trends (pricing, demand, supply) and compare the claim with the extant data.

    What’s important to note is that the reporter or editor in this case does not need to conduct “analysis” per se that may be beyond their professional capabilities. You don’t need to be a forensic accountant to compare a claim (“Regulations are hurting the oil and gas industry in Colorado”) with factual data (“Permits granted rose in December and a rise in gas prices concurrent with the operation of Rockies Express has promoted increased gas production.”) All journalists need to do is present the reader with the claim and the data one reasonably would examine to determine whether the claim is true, false, arguably misleading or whatever.

    The same is true in interviews; a claim purportedly showing a factual phenomenon too often is not met with the basic, Reporting 101 question: “What’s your proof and how can I check it?” It’s glaringly obvious this question is not being asked in much of the Colorado mainstream media’s reporting on oil and gas. It also was embarrassingly obvious it was not being asked during recent years’ debates over legislation involving organized labor. You remember all those stories where business interests claimed companies were threatening not to locate in Colorado or expand operations here if labor-friendly moves were made, but cited not one specific company that had made any such threat? Until Rep. Ferrandino directly addressed this canard with a hearing witness — who then was forced to debunk it — the media were content to repeat it day after day, without any accompanying shreds of proof.

    THAT type of obvious question is the job of the journalist. However, with alarming frequency we see that singular aspect of critical thinking completely omitted by reporters and editors — at least based on the product we see being printed and aired. “News” reports instead often are the result of spoon-fed information that often is not subject to basic vetting, or are attempted displays of expertise that really are unsubstantiated assertions, the veracity of which the reporter expects us to take for granted.

    If anything the rise of new media such as blogs has fueled more critical thinking; Pols is a great example of people asking questions that reporters either can’t or won’t ask any more.

    As more of that type of critical thinking on non-traditional platforms becomes harnessed to disciplines of traditional journalistic and ethical principles (transparency, fact-based discourse), you’ll see an acceleration in the demise of mainstream, traditional media that frequently remain too lazy or hidebound to abide by the bedrock principles of their profession.

    • Steve Harvey says:

      that has been a part of the sociology of mass media for decades, and that President Obama discussed in his book “The Audacity of Hope.” The combination of time-pressures, a quest for something that appears to the public to resemble objectivity or lack of bias, and the convenience of “information subsidies” (ie, the cheaply acquired unprocessed information delivered by public officials), all conspire to create a delivery of competing factoids largely divorced from consideration of their relative veracity.

      This is why analyses like the ones provided in this thread are the most vital contribution that the blogosphere can provide to public discourse: It begins to fill a vacuum desparately in need of being filled. Continuing to fill that vacuum is one of the most pressing political challenges of our age.

    • parsingreality says:

      A number of years ago there was a small item about a call center locating to CO Springs.  It said that it would hire X number of people and pump Y dollars into the local economy.

      Well, even this math challenged fool looked at those numbers and concluded that something doesn’t computer.

      So, out comes the trusty calculator, dividing Y by X, and holy cow, the average wage would be $80,000 a year!  

      Since boiler rooms typically pay minimum wage with substantial incentives, and have relatively few administrators, that’s a hell of a lot of money for phone jockeys.

      Or maybe they used an economic multiplier w/o so stating?  Or maybe they just lied?  Or maybe “journalists” need to cease being so naive and check the math.  

  7. BlueCat says:

    who still needs paper pages that I can  read at my kitchen table with my morning coffee, I have to admit that newspapers, along with most of the MSM, are giving us less and less reason to support them if just parroting  whatever they are presented with is the best they can do. This isn’t just a problem with current discussions of oil and gas in Colorado but is pervasive.

    If our newspapers are just going to be regurgitating press releases, the arguments about needing old fashioned media with rigorous reporting, investigating, researching and fact checking standards, as opposed to the free and easy world of websites and blogs, becomes less and less relevant. To hang on to a reason for being they need to do a much better job on the straight news pages.

    It shouldn’t be easier to find facts and backup among the best columnists.  As good as some of them are, they write from a particular point of view.  The news pages should be the gold standard. Otherwise, why bother to keep fighting to save our papers?  

  8. SheepskinStrutt says:

    I think that the idea of “alternative newspapers” speaking truth to power of the ignominious oil n’ gas industry and getting all Coloradans to listen is a leftist fantasy. Both Real Vail and the Independent fancy themselves to be truly “independent-minded”, yet are simply an outgrowth of hard leftists becoming disillusioned with the Democratic/liberal label and self-deluding themselves into thinking that they are “independent” of that irascible two-party system.

    Although we can argue data all day, what is a fundamental Colorado Republican concern is making sure that the oil n’ gas industry has a fertile playing field for increased development. While it by no means should be sycophantic, I think that when increasingly faced with a hard Left that overtly expresses a hatred for “corportate” business in CO, Republicans are right to jump to their defense.

    Oh, and let me know when the Independent stops filling the back of their publication with thinly-veiled prostitution ads. Kind of hurts their credibility.  

    • Steve Harvey says:

      I love that! In other words, facts don’t really matter. What really matters is blind ideology, served by straw man arguments and broad brushstroke dismissals of facts and analyses which challenge your ideological convictions.

      I don’t know about anyone else, but I have frequently repeated my admiration of markets, and of their robustness in the production of wealth. Large corporations are, to varying degrees, artifacts of well functioning markets, and as such play a vital role in our economy. (To varying degrees, they are also artifacts of government subsidies, which may or may not be in the public interest). However, as robustly as they produce wealth, they also produce negative externalities, whose costs need to be considered as well.

      Rather than reducing the world to conveniently sloppy terms like “hating” corporations, or “making sure they have a fertile playing field,” wouldn’t it be more useful to do a complete analysis of all costs and benefits involved, including a cross-state comparison of severance tax policies and state regulations, to determine what is in the best interests of the people of Colorado, rather than simply waving whichever set of empty platitudes you happen to prefer?

    • RedGreenRedGreen says:

      Maybe you’re thinking of Westword, or The Colorado Springs Independent, but The Colorado Independent is an online site and doesn’t have a “back of their publication,” much less the kind of ads you mention. Kind of hurts your credibility.

    • Sir RobinSir Robin says:

      This type of position you’re promulgating isn’t productive. Indeed, its damaging. There are real and serious issues around the supply and use of oil and gas as energy sources. Politicizing these issues doesn’t do anyone any good.

      Anyone want to talk about Jared Diamond’s excellent work “Collapse: How Societies Choose To Fail Or Succeed?” I’m an equal opportunity critic, so let me start by saying that it was AL Gore who cast the tie-breaking vote in the Senate in 1994 as VP to make corn ethanol our primary energy direction. Corn ethanol has a negative energy return, and although that probably wasn’t known at the time, Gore was actually hastening oil depletion and climate change.

      That same year, 1994, team Clinton also cancelled the largest energy research project in the history of the world, the billion-dollar Integral Fast Reactor (IFR) program:

      http://www.sustainablenuclear….

      For a typical light water reactor, assuming centrifuge uranium enrichment, the EROEI (Energy Return on Energy Invested) is 57.6 to 1, and about 162 tons of fresh uranium are required per gigawatt-year. The IFR has an energy return of over 300 to 1, and would require just one ton of depleted uranium per year. The world is struggling to prove that it doesn’t need nuclear power, but perhaps the Obama administration aims to change that. Is this is an undeveloped alternative source of energy that should receive more attention?

      I am quite rightfully concerned about hydrofractal technologies being used here in CO. To the point of this thread….investigative journalism, there is this from radio station WNYC and ProPublica in N.Y. where real investigative journalism produced this exchange:

      REPORTER: For over a decade, gas companies have been intensively tapping uncon-ventional plays in western states like Colorado. Drill rigs have brought a lot of wealth, but at the same time they’ve dredged up a host of environmental problems – contaminating water supplies and drying up aquifers.

      The culprit is a practice called hydraulic fracturing. It’s never been done much in New York. But it’s the only way to get gas out of the Marcellus Shale. Basically the driller blasts the bottom of the well shaft with water, sand, and chemicals, under very high pressure in order to free up the gas. Hydrofracking demands a huge amount of water – up to six million gallons per well. (My bold-Let’s remember how precious water is.)

      KAPPELL: How are you gonna dispose of that water?

      REPORTER: Bill Kappell works for the U.S. Geological Survey. He says there are serious questions that have to be answered,

      KAPPELL: It’s going to be a learning process. How are you going to treat that water so you can properly dispose of it without despoiling the water resources of New York State?

      REPORTER: The US Department of Energy considers the waste water that is produced in gas drilling some of the most toxic of all industrial byproducts. Kappell is particularly concerned about the chemicals used – he doesn’t even know what they are.

      KAPPELL: Nothing. They’re proprietary; they’re particular to the company. They don’t have to divulge it.

      REPORTER: But in sworn testimony before Congress last fall, environmental health analyst Dr. Theo Colburn – an opponent of drilling – said she was able to obtain a list of one fracking chemicals to be used in Colorado drilling. She says there were 171 substances on the list, and that 92 percent of them had health effects ranging from sinus irritation to reproductive organ damage.

      So, SheepskinStrutt (Are you a wolf in Sheep’s clothing?), let’s stay focused and debate these important issues on their merits, instead of resorting to the divisive and unproductive labeling.

      • Sir RobinSir Robin says:

        From the oildrum.com:

        As far back as 1943, Manhatten project scientists including Phil Morrison, Harrison Brown and Alvin Weinberg began to understand the energy implications of nuclear energy. Weinberg later wrote:

        “Phil Morrison could hardly contain his excitement as he showed me his calculations. If uranium were burned in a breeder, the energy released through fission would exceed the amount of energy required to extract the residual 4 ppm of uranium from granitic rock.”

        Later Weinberg came to see that thorium was an even more inviting resource. The crustal concentration of thorium averaged 12 ppm, three times that of uranium. Thus if uranium can be recovered with a favorable ERoEI, crustal thorium would yield an ERoEI that is three times better than. In a thorium breeder, such as the LFTR, one tone of thorium will yield the energy equivalent of 3 to 4 million tons of coal. My calculation indicates that the if all world energy output were derived from thorium, and every person on earth consumed energy at modern Western European levels, in one billion years, we would use about 15% of recoverable thorium. The sun will turn into a red giant, and snuff out all life on the earth, before we run out of recoverable thorium.

        Weinberg’s vision was huge in scope as he later explained:

        “In this essay I speculated on the very long-range future-hundreds, even thousands, of years in the future. Where will our energy come from at that distant time when coal, oil, and natural gas have been used up? Solar energy is one obvious inexhaustible source. Another, if it works, could be controlled thermonuclear energy based on deuterium from the sea (thus “Burning the Sea”).

        My main point, however, was to stress what Phil Morrison and then Harrison Brown had already noticed: that the residual and all but infinite uranium and thorium in granite rocks could be burned with an energy yield larger than the energy required to mine and refine the ore-but only if breeders, which could burn nearly all the fertile material, are used. I spoke of “Burning the Rocks”: the breeder, no less than controlled fusion, is an inexhaustible energy system. Up till then we had thought that breeders, burning 50% instead of 2% of the uranium, extended the energy derivable from fission “only” 25-fold. But, because the breeder uses its raw material so efficiently, one can afford to utilize much more expensive-that is, dilute-ores, and these are practically inexhaustible. The breeder indeed will allow humankind to “Burn the Rocks” to achieve inexhaustible energy!”

        In his autobiography Weinberg confessed:

        “I became obsessed with the Idea that humankind’s whole future depended on the breeder. For Society generally to achieve and maintain a standard of living of today’s developed countries, depends on the avaliability of relatively cheap, inexhaustible sources of energy.”

        Clearly then Phillip Morrison, Harrison Brown, and Alvin Weinberg all realized that Jevon’s paradox need not apply if we chose to derive energy from breeder reactors.

    • bmenezes says:

      And what corporate business exactly has the Left expressed hatred for in Colorado lately? Vestas? DaVita? ConocoPhillips? All three have located or announced plans to locate significant business operations here since Gov. Ritter took office, and there are others on the way.

      The fear-based tactic of claiming that the Left or whatever you choose to call it is scaring corporate business away from Colorado falls apart pretty quickly with a look at the relevant facts. Oil and gas seems to be responding favorably to a rise in gas prices (much as it contracted when prices plummeted — funny how that always happens, eh?) despite the continued existence of those new regulations the industry’s astroturf groups would have you believe are putting it out of business.

      Save such false claims for the local tea party; the people here would rather argue on the basis of facts.

    • ClubTwitty says:

      the Colorado Independent, not so much.

      Where in my diary did I disdain market systems or suggest that we should have no oil and gas development?  Oh, yeah, I didn’t.  Is there a conservative capable of actually engaging the argument presented to them?  Or is the arrow in their arsenal to formulate ad hominid straw man arguments?  Put another way–are all conservatives really that stupid?

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