May 13, 2012

Blockbuster News About U.S. Oil Reserves … Isn’t News

Searches on “Government Accountability Office” (not in quotes), “shale,” and “mittal” at the Associated Press’s national site return nothing relevant to the energy-related story which will follow. A Google News search on “Anu Mittal,” the person from the GAO who on Thursday testified before the House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology`s Subcommittee on Energy and Environment, appears to return seven relevant items, but it’s really five. The first is a press release from the Luddite (aka Democratic) members of the committee pooh-poohing the importance of Ms. Mittal’s assertions. The other four are from non-major and/or non-establishment press sources: Newser, American Thinker, Daily Markets, and the Inquisitr (yes, spelled correctly). Only one other news outlet I’m aware of, Media Research Center’s CNS News, has also noted Ms. Mittal’s testimony.

What Ms. Mittal had to say is that, according to a leading research organization, just one area overlapping three states in the West (not the Midwest, as a couple of the other links assert) has an astounding quantity of recoverable oil:

… Oil shale deposits in the Green River Formation are estimated to contain up to 3 trillion barrels of oil, half of which may be recoverable, which is about equal to the entire world’s proven oil reserves.

… The Rand Corporation, a nonprofit research organization, estimates that 30 to 60 percent of the oil shale in the Green River Formation can be recovered. At the midpoint of this estimate, almost half of the 3 trillion barrels of oil would be recoverable.

The biggest problems is that the reserves are primarily on federal land. Instead of being pleased at the prospect of approaching energy independence, the environmental extremists who control policy in the Obama administration are probably already working on how to lock the area up so no one will be able to touch it even after they’re gone.

Ms. Mittal cited very real concerns about advances in technology required to make the oil recoverable at costs below current market prices, but also raised “sustainability” concerns which appear to yours truly to be mostly bogus. They’re the types of concerns (lots of people moving into currently low-population areas, related infrastructure concerns, and the like) which would have caused the hand-wringers and anti-progress zealots to shut off oil development in North Dakota, if they could have. But they didn’t, and though the state is enduring some growing pains, it’s still there, and it will get back to a manageable equilibrium not as soon as everyone would like, but soon enough.

The media bias points in this post are these:

  • Ms. Mittal’s testimony isn’t news in any establishment press outlet — In addition to the searches cited in the first paragraph, nothing relevant was found in a search on Ms. Mittal’s last name at the New York Times, Washington Post, or Los Angeles Times.
  • Of the outlets which did cover it, two of them gratuitously brought the Iraq War into the discussion. Newser’s Neal Colgrass wrote: “Maybe President Bush should have invaded the Midwest instead of Iraq.” Residents of Utah, Colorado, and Wyoming will be amused to learn that Colgrass believe that their states are in the Midwest. They’re not. Similarly, the unbylined Inquisitr report snarked that “While the United States has invaded much of the Middle East in search of lower gas prices, perhaps President Bush should have been focusing his efforts on the Midwest region of the United States during the first Iraq war.” Media bias clearly runs very deep — miles deep, if you will.
  • Even at American Thinker, Rick Moran seemed unduly pessimistic about the economic feasibility of recovery. One contrarian commenter at AT suggested that “The majority of the oil cited is economically recoverable using current technology.” In something I attempted to confirm but couldn’t, another wrote that “This shale oil is being recovered today in Utah by Newfield Energy.” The company has Utah operations, but I found nothing directly citing Utah shale operations.

Meanwhile, anything which even remotely seems to support the in reality nonexistent case for global warming gets preferential treatment from the establishment press — which can only lead one to conclude that many journalists and the Democrats who feed them news leads would rather see the nation economically dependent and energy-starved than energy-independent and prosperous.

Cross-posted at

AP Writers Seem Stunned That Romney Didn’t Deliver ‘A Red-meat Conservative Policy Speech’ in a Commencement Address

The headline at the Associated Press’s Sunday morning story primarily about GOP presumptive presidential nominee Mitt Romney’s commencement address at Liberty University (“Romney urges grads to honor family commitments”) was at least acceptable. It went downhill from there, betraying what appear to be deeply-held biases held by writers Kasie Hunt and Rachel Zoll against Republicans, conservatives, and Christians — up to and including a “red meat” reference in what the Administration’s Press will probably still claim is an objective report.

Apart from the self-evident bias, Hunt and Zoll failed to grasp the fundamental concept that a commencement speech is not a political stump speech. It is supposed to be a chance for the speaker, at least one who isn’t a self-absorbed narcissist, to inform, inspire and advise graduates on what awaits them in the real world and how they should generally consider carrying out the rest of their lives. That, to the AP pair’s apparent disappointment and astonishment, is what Romney did. Their opening six paragraphs plus a few selected others come after the jump, with prejudicial verbiage in bold, followed by several paragraphs from Romney’s speech which Hunt and Zoll, if they they had been there to report a story instead of serving as Team Obama apparatchiks, would have noted:


Sunday Off-Topic (Moderated) Open Thread (051312)

Filed under: Lucid Links — Tom @ 8:30 am

Rules are here. Possible comment fodder may follow later. Other topics are also fair game.


Positivity: Rite for the Blessing of an Unborn Child

Filed under: Positivity — Tom @ 8:25 am

From a newly published “Rite for the Blessing of a Child in the Womb”:

[For the expecting mother]

God, author of all life,
bless, we pray, this unborn child;
give constant protection
and grant a healthy birth
that is the sign of our rebirth one day
into the eternal rejoicing of heaven.

Lord, who have brought to this woman
the wondrous joy of motherhood,
grant her comfort in all anxiety
and make her determined
to lead her child along the ways of salvation.

[For the father]

Lord of the ages,
who have singled out this man
to know the grace and pride of fatherhood,
grant him courage in this new responsibility,
and make him an example of justice and truth for this child.

[For the family]

Lord, endow this family
with sincere and enduring love
as they prepare to welcome this child into their midst.

Lord, you have put into the hearts of all men and women of good will
a great awe and wonder at the gift of new life;
fill this (parish) community
with faithfulness to the teachings of the Gospel
and new resolve to share
in the spiritual formation of this child in Christ our Savior,
who lives and reigns for ever and ever.


AP Coverage of Dem Mess in North Carolina Falsely Gives GOP Voters Sole Credit for Traditional Marriage Amendment’s Passage

VoteForMarriageNC0512Let’s grant that Associated Press reporter Mitch Weiss, in his dispatch Saturday on the headache Democratic National Convention host state North Carolina has become for the left, acknowledged by quoting someone else that “Nobody can sugarcoat the fact that we got problems here.” That said, the AP reporter applied quite a bit of sweetener with generous pinches of distortion in several instances. The biggest howler was the patently falsely impression he gave that the constitutional amendment approved by voters on Tuesday limiting marriage to one-man, one-woman relationships achieved success solely because of a “fired-up Republican base,” when the support for it had to be far broader for it to achieve its 61.06%-38.84% victory margin (scroll to the very bottom at the link; the state’s Board of Elections would appear to be quite unhappy with the result).

Additionally, Weiss characterized the Tar Heel State as one which “offers few protections for workers,” apparently because it’s a right to work state; claimed that unemployment is “much higher in some rural counties” than the statewide average (9.7% seasonally adjusted, 9.6% unadjusted) when the proper term would have been “many” or “dozens of”; and, concerning Governor Bev Perdue, wrote that “Democrats say” she would have lost if she had chosen to run for reelection this year, when the truth is that anyone with eyes, including Perdue, could see it coming (but apparently only what “Democrats say” matters). Relevant paragraphs follow the jump: