It is always easier to give advice or mandates for others than to actually do it. I am guilty of such and I am sure that many of us are. But, when I do it, it does not hit as hard as, say, when the President does it.
President Obama’s energy plan includes encouraging Americans to buy more fuel-efficient (e.g. hybrid) vehicles. That’s great and all, disregarding the price of such cars and replacement parts. But it’s the way the President presents this plan that gets to me. For example, how he reacts to an audience member at this town meeting (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L1JtIY0K_cY). He laughs it off and replies with how this guy with 10 kids should get a hybrid SUV (again, disregarding the price tag).
But that’s not what really bothers me.
It was the President’s recent Los Angeles trip that got me to actually write this post. President Obama was in town to go to three fundraising events. (Anyone else find it annoying that our taxes are going to fundraising events? But I digress.)
How is this for fuel-efficiency: President Obama flew to Los Angeles from San Francisco. Okay, not bad — we all fly. But then you factor in the planes used to transport the President’s motorcade, the press plane, and any other plane that the advance team uses, and well, it’s a bit more complicated than your everyday Southwest flight from San Francisco to LAX.
Next, you have the helicopter that flew the President from LAX to West Los Angeles – about 12 miles, give or take. But then you also have the other helicopters that fly with Marine One in its shell-game operation. Plus, the news helicopters, the police helicopters, and the helicopters that scouted the President’s routes about a week before. So, more fuel (and tax dollars).
From West Los Angeles, the President double-backed south to Culver City, this time in his motorcade … of 45 vehicles. For security, I am also going to factor in all the local police vehicles for extra patrols and the closing of roads, etc. And I tell you, most of those vehicles, totally not hybrid anything.
Finally, we come to the gas that just burned in all those cars of people stuck in traffic on the West Side. Granted, this trip wasn’t as horrible as the President’s last trip in terms of gridlock. With gas at an average of $4.20/gallon in Los Angeles, I doubt people were happy about the extra commute time (or maybe they didn’t commute at all to avoid it completely; for those not on salary, well that’s just money lost instead of carbon emissions).
As a conservative, yes I am annoyed. Because all of that above was for fundraising.
Yes, all of that was necessary for the President to do (keep) his job (for the DNC). But it’s also necessary for a lot of people to keep their fuel “inefficient” cars to do their jobs and take care of their families. So, my response to the President (and all those in his defense), get a hybrid plane. Or a teleporter, it’s more fuel-efficient.