awkwardly

Wednesday

"Some people have wacky ideas," the new Republican campaign ad alleges. "Like taxing gasoline more so people drive less. That's John Kerry." Cut to a shot of men in suits riding bicycles.

Sadly, the accusation is false. Kerry has been demanding that the price of oil be held down. He wants George Bush to release supplies from the strategic reserve and persuade Saudi Arabia to increase production. He has been warning the American people that if the president doesn't act soon, he and Dick Cheney will have to share a car to work. Men riding bicycles and sharing cars? Is there no end to this madness?

Like the fuel protests that rose and receded in Britain last week, these exchanges are both moronic and entirely rational. The price of oil has been rising because demand for a finite resource is growing faster than supply. Holding the price down means that this resource will be depleted more quickly, with the result that the dreadful prospect of men sharing cars and riding bicycles comes ever closer. Perhaps the presidential candidates will start campaigning next against the passage of time. ...

-- from Break Out The Bicycles in The Guardian, 8 June 2004, George Monbiot

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