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If I were an oil company executive.

By • Aug 5th, 2008 • Category: Hmm...

After my daily Coffee brewed with the finest beans and the tears of those who love the planet, I would go about my day thinking about how best to protect my interests.

The first thing I would do is hire people who had the exclusive task of ensuring our transportation infrastructure was entirely dependent on oil-based vehicles. They could lobby for higher speed limits, the type that only gas-powered cars could run on. I would have them promote through news, the media and television the idea that gas-powered cars are the only “real” transportation. And I would push for helmet laws, so that less people would be likely to ride bicycles. I would also plant people to push for and sell the idea that bicycling is not a real form of transportation, that bicycles are toys and should never be taken seriously. I would never do this in the open, but I would plant little hints here and there. And if you did want to take a bicycle seriously, I would plant the idea that what you really needed for this is a network of bike lanes to get you anywhere, and until these bike lanes are complete, you are safer just driving an oil-based vehicle. And when the bike lanes came, I would organize people to ensure they were inadequate.

I would also seek out any crackpot scientist that said that global warming was a myth, and I would fund his research. Not openly mind you.

Now I am not an oil company executive, and I am not saying I know any that have done this, but it is a nagging suspicion I have had. Nothing provable and I am probably just imagining things. All I am saying is that if I wanted to keep the profits rolling in, especially in this climate where a great deal of people would rather not use gasoline at all, I would take steps to make sure that the public stayed my customer, and that my oil company could continue to rake in the money. Add to this that I would probably help GM kill the electric car. Perhaps by buying the battery pack company from GM, and suing anyone who used it.

Let me add my final disclaimer, I am not accusing anyone of anything. I am just theorizing with a bit of plausible fiction. I’m sure the truth is actually much more disturbing than I would want to know, and I value my ability to sleep at night.

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3 Responses »

  1. If I WERE an oil company exec.

    The subjunctive mood.

    Otherwise good post. I’m sure they’re up to a lot more than just suppressing bicycles, like other forms of energy that are cleaner and if they were getting the kinds of subsidies big oil was getting could be wildly successful.

  2. Fixed, thank you.

    Guess what I just found out. Some people want to hand 25 BILLION dollars in tax dollars to the failing auto manufacturers, I think we need a grassroots campaign to stop that crap.

    I may do an entire post on it.

    http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601087&sid=aviz2sm08FDg&refer=home

    It is for developing “alternative energy” but can we trust these guys? When they start making the EV1 again, maybe. Until then, too little too late, leave room for the people who actually care what happens to the environment.

    I wish we could end all of the oil subsidies, but I think the public wants “cheap gas” even if they are actually paying for that gas in federal taxes.

  3. Here’s a thought….

    Most of our politicians, on both sides of the aisles, are blabbing about how we need to reduce our dependency on foreign oil. What better way than to start using our own power (via our bicycles) to replace as much of it as possible?

    WRITE your local government, your State legislators, your U.S Senators and Congressmen, and let them know that you support more cycling infrastructure and facilites as a means toward that end.

    Maybe the very small percentage of the population who do support this are just ‘howling at the moon’ at this point in time, but it could do some good to keep this constantly in front of those officials’ faces as often as possible. Maybe having 3-4% of the urban population cycling to work is only a small thing, but small things add up.

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