The Corner

Fracking and Its Enemies, Cont.

Earlier today, I had a post that touched on fracking — a technique that, combined with horizontal drilling, promises a bonanza for the American people. Jobs. Prosperity. Energy security. Dynamism. A more confident foreign policy. Of course, there are many people who want to kill fracking, and some of these people occupy very important positions.

They have not been able to kill fracking in North Dakota, as I detailed in National Review last year. North Dakota has been able to provide jobs for people all over the country — including for people who had been out of work for years. They had more or less given up hope. The North Dakota experience can be replicated elsewhere, if policymakers permit — if We the People elect men and women who will permit it.

(We voters are responsible, no one else.)

Out in Manhattan, I passed a pretty young woman on the street. She was one of the Clipboard People — the young people who dot the city in warmer months, promoting Left causes. Someone once told me they’re Soros-paid. Anyway, she chirped, “Would you like to help stop fracking?” I chirped back, “No, thanks.”

As I continued my walk, I was tempted to despair of this girl, and how she had been educated. She looked about 18, or, at the most, 20. Then I thought about some of the things I believed at her age: about Arafat, the PLO, and Israel; and about capitalism. At the time, I probably thought we needed more social workers and fewer businessmen. Anyway, this young woman may grow out of her present beliefs. Or she may not.

I wish she could know what fracking would mean for her, her children, and her grandchildren. But the weight of the culture — the culture she inhabits — is too heavy for that.

I’d like to publish a letter from a smart, regular reader in Chicago:


Would you ever have dreamt that we would see a deus ex machina like the shale-oil boom? It’s like being stone-cold broke and — well, striking oil! It addresses so many needs and answers so many questions and is such a quintessentially American development. It gives proof of the supposed Bismarck quote: “God takes care of drunks, little children, and the United States of America.” And our betters think we should take it slow, build wind turbines, and blah blah blah.

Assuming we get through this, we will all look back on the Obama era and shake our heads the way we do when we look at photos of ourselves in the ’70s, with all that hair, polyester clothes, and zip-up boots. We meant well, and thought highly of ourselves, but we were very, very foolish.

There was something wrong with zip-up boots?

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