Oklahoman Editorial Omits Pickens, McClendon Alternative Arguments

Image of wind turbines

Why waste time and energy dissecting another disingenuous editorial by The Oklahoman? Everyone already knows the right-wing newspaper is horribly biased, right? Just act like the stench in the backyard does not exist. Forget about it.

But, then again, there is the historical record to consider. Blogs and other Web sites can correct the historical record and challenge the freaky un-reality presented by the corporate media, especially The Oklahoman. It remains worth the effort as an ongoing culminative project.

The Oklahoman published an editorial (“The Tao of oil: Energy path not as green as we think,” August 17, 2008) about renewable energy sources on Sunday that intentionally omitted crucial information in order to criticize former Vice President Al Gore and presidential candidate Barack Obama.

The editorial argues that the “boring reality” is that focusing on renewable energy sources, such as wind power, will do little to solve any energy problems. This country “still runs on oil and will for a long time to come.”

The editorial notes, “We can't drill our way out of oil shortages, but we also can't green ourselves out of a paper bag. Yet Al Gore wants a weaning from fossil fuels within 10 years and Barack Obama has the same goal "in our time.”

The editorial’s point is that Gore and Obama have pie-in-the-sky views about renewable energy.

According to the editorial, “The ‘boring reality’ is that alternative fuels, for all their promise, would account for even less than the small contribution they now make were it not for government subsidies. Prevailing political winds, which would increase to hurricane strength if Obama wins and has a filibuster-proof Congress, would take money from Big Oil and transfer it to Big Green, including Gore's $35 million hedge fund.”

The idea that somehow “Big Oil” needs more taxpayer money is ludicrous. Oil companies have been reaping record profits under the corrupt regime of President George Bush. The reference to Gore’s hedge fund is disingenuous as well. Does The Oklahoman not support free markets?

But, more importantly, what about the views of two ultra-rich Republicans with strong ties to Oklahoma? T. Boone Pickens, who is a major benefactor of Oklahoma State University, recently announced an energy plan for the nation based on wind power and converting cars to run on natural gas, which is still abundant. Chesapeake Energy executive Aubrey McClendon also recently spoke to a Congressional committee about the need to convert cars to run on natural class to preserve Americans’ quality of life.

Both Pickens and McClendon, who have spoken urgently about their concerns, have donated large amounts of money to Republican causes in the past.

Yet The Oklahoman completely omits these two Republicans as it tries to denigrate Gore and Obama over an issue that has become nonpartisan. The editorial does mention natural gas conversion, but nothing about its principal advocates, Pickens and McClendon. Why is that?

So the point here, under the un-reality presented by The Oklahoman, is that if you are a Democrat and you favor exploring the use of renewable energy sources and natural gas and tying this use to free markets, then you are basically unrealistic. If you are a Republican and you want the same thing, then, well, you just do not get mentioned at all because it does not fit with the narrow-minded, clichéd, right-wing views of some anonymous editorial writer at The Oklahoman.

The real boring reality is The Oklahoman remains a terrible newspaper that serves as a propaganda ministry for the Republican Party. It intentionally uses rhetorical subterfuge to twist facts and arguments.



This is the same Oklahoma that wanted to build a nuclear power plant, Black Fox, near Tulsa on a natural fault, right? Never mind that the President at the time, Jimmy Carter, a Georgia peanut farmer WITH A DEGREE IN NUCLEAR PHYSICS, placed a national moratorium on nuclear energy because he understood the inherent hazards. Plus, not only did Carter forsee the catastrophic results of reliance on nuclear energy, he also manuvered tax credits as incentives for citizens to conserve and explore natural source alternative to fossil-fuel energy like geothermal and wind. Just as Gore understands the dangers of global warming (which by the way is suspected in the predicted next 10-20 years of category 5 and above hurricanes), politicians who refuse to accept the very obvious reality that we humans are earth's stewards use arguments to appeal to dumbed-down, nostalgic longings of entitlement. The pro-oil, anti-environmentalist argument is, "So what if the oil is located on grounds legislatated for protection, not just for the wildlife but for the greater good of the total environment? We have the right to destroy our environment for it! We are entitled to attack soverign nations for control of it, even if we loot the national treasury and kill children just so that the barrons get the loot and we get the bills for the costs, as long as we get it, nothing and no cost matters." Oh, but alternative sources are just too much!!!??? Like it is too much to put cans, plastics and paper into recycle bins or to keep speed limits and tire pressure at gas-savings levels or, heaven forbid, explore alternative green sources of energy and replace fossil-fuel dependency. I just moved back to Oklahoma after years of living all over the country and other parts of the world, and I now see why I moved away...I gave up because I couldn't take any more of "soonerism" and of what Alfree Woodard, the actress from Tulsa, calls "Oklahoma ignorance", the kind of plain old in-your-face, I'll-have-it-my-way-regardless ignorance in which people tend to take a bit of sinful pride. I guess I was thinking that there were more "smarts" in government these days as opposed to the days when govenors stole state seals, waited till the real governor left town to appoint themselves and won cow chip throws--I always knew the Oklahoman was a rag...see, I am from Tulsa where Muskogee Congressman James R. Jones had a TV ad that showed the Oklahoman used for it's intended purpose, to line the bottoms of bird cages...Hamma