Editorial: U.S. needs to embrace alternative fuels

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Why do gas prices keep climbing? And climbing? And climbing?

Because there is more demand. Sure, China and India are industrializing and that has increased demand, but who puts the greatest demand on oil? America.

The reason for prices going up is simple. Americans will fork out the cash for the gasoline anyway. The oil companies are charging what the market will bear.

The solution is simple, too. Americans need to be more supportive of alternative fuels. Enough of the grandstanding by politicians about bringing prices down. The blowhards won&8217;t change anything unless they start realizing the economic benefits of fuels from the Midwest, not the Mideast.

Think about it. OPEC is the world&8217;s largest cartel. Its members limit production, which in turn jacks up prices. That basically is the reason for OPEC&8217;s existence.

It&8217;s like getting nine-tenths of the world&8217;s farmers together in one room to control the production of corn. It&8217;s quite a damper on the market benefits of capitalism.

With home-grown fuels, that cartel factor will be gone. Competition will be a lead factor in the market, and that tends to drive prices down.

Politicians should support funding research and development of alternative fuels, and they should give tax breaks to American companies that invest in research and development.

Because the problems with oil aren&8217;t going away.