Tuesday, 5 May 2009
Sarah Palin, the country's foremost energy expert
Sarah Palin's tropical Alaska doesn't need a statewide energy code. She's refusing to take the $28.6 million for energy programs.
"The fact that Alaska does not currently have a state energy code indicates that there has not been a statewide consensus for imposing such a code on local communities and Alaska residents." (e-mail from one of Sarah Palin's many mouthpieces, Sharon Leighow)
"We shouldn't have to change our local laws to accept more of this federal package, as the feds already control much of our young state, thus prohibiting our opportunities to responsibly develop." (e-mail from Sarah Palin herself)
Sarah is the highest authority in the country regarding energy issues. She's also an ace journalist who's not averse to split infinitives. Oh, how to politely put it?
Alaska is an oil producing state, yet Alaskans pay the highest possible fuel prices to heat their homes. In remote communities fuel prices are much higher.
Barrow, June 2008: A gallon of unleaded gasoline: $10. Heating fuel: $9.10 a gallon. Electricity: $1.17 per kilowatt hour — 11 times the national average.
Last year the state was in a position to send $1,200 to every resident to help with heating bills, the much talked about energy rebate: $720 million in total.
If that money had been spent in long term measures, such as making all buildings more energy efficient, Alaskans would have to spend less to heat their homes. They would have been able to save money every winter. Instead they each received some emergency money that's long gone.
Ah, but actually addressing a longstanding problem affecting many thousands of residents of the coldest state in the Union wouldn't make sense to our Sarah. She told Esquire magazine in February:
"My favorite place in Alaska is on a cold winter day in my own house, with fat snowflakes falling. In my nice warm home."
I bet her nice warm home is energy efficient and her heating bills are not as high as those the villagers in the Yukon Delta have to pay, for example. I bet Sarah Palin doesn't have to choose between heating her home and feeding her family.
Our energy expert, instead of using the federal money to make some progress in this area, stomps her little foot in a tantrum: "I won't be told what to do by those nasty feds, I know everything about energy, so there!"
Sarah Palin had to refuse at least some of the nasty, dirty, strings attached stimulus money, otherwise she wouldn't be able to show her fan club in the Lower 48 what a good little fiscal conservative gal she is...
Too bad she's not the governor of Florida. I think she would have refused federal money for hurricane protection if that had been the case, provided she had a solid cool home...