Sunday, April 6, 2008

Ethanol: The New Oil

While researching for a post on how ethanol is like oil in many ways, I came across this recent article from the Heritage Foundation that said it better than I could. Here's a preview:

For a growing number of people, including some who had supported the mandate, the many problems, trade-offs, and unintended consequences have proven too great to ignore. Even those who see benefits have to ask themselves whether they are outweighed by the costs.

Expensive. Resource intensive. Environmentally damaging. Yes, ethanol is the new oil. This is one more example of the government thinking it knows better than the free market. Some have been asking since the beginning: If ethanol is cheaper and cleaner, why do we need a mandate?

Some argue that ethanol is just the first step to something better. I agree that is possible, but first steps aren't always viable. When the Wright brothers made their first flight, they didn't start hiring flight attendants. If there are more promising fuels down the line, the free market will find them easier without government-mandated false hope in corn ethanol.

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