With stunning speed, the presidential election has shifted from Iraq and health care to high gas prices and the economy. Stupid is the only thing disputing that.
Americans are angry that both parties have sold them out on energy, and now working people are getting hurt badly.
So who will benefit from this: Obama or McCain?
It's hard to see how Senator Obama can exploit the issues, since he and his party oppose expanding almost all traditional energy production, and two-thirds of Americans favor more drilling.
Alternative energy theories are fine, but folks need relief now. And increased drilling and oil shale production would send a message to the world oil markets and might bring prices down. Might.
But remember, Senator McCain doesn't want to drill in ANWR either, as he told me a few weeks ago.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOHN MCCAIN: All I do is believe that we have to preserve some of the great natural treasures of this earth.
O'REILLY: In the Arctic Circle?
MCCAIN: No matter where they are, my friend. And...
O'REILLY: You know a lot of people aren't going to like that.
MCCAIN: I know a lot of people don't like it, but I am also an environmentalist.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
"Talking Points" believes the USA definitely needs to drill in ANWR and offshore with strict EPA oversight. We have the technology to do the strategic drilling.
"Points" also believes there has to be an energy summit in Washington and a clear, cohesive plan to increase our power production has to be mandated — forced — so the world will know we are changing our energy ways.
Drilling is needed, but it's not the long-term solution. If the American oil companies do discover new oil, they're not going to give us a discount. They'll sell that oil at the worldwide price. That is vital to understand.
So for our national security and the environment, we need to use as much fuel cell, biofuel and nuclear power as we can. But again, it's up to the feds to mandate the direction.
The political ramifications of brutal oil prices are staggering. Just a few months ago, far-left loons like Al Franken in Minnesota were strutting around telling everybody how smart they are. Now it's almost inconceivable any voter in Minnesota could support someone like Franken for the Senate when it's people like him who have crippled the U.S. energy industry.
Wait until Minnesotans get a look at their heating bills this winter. See you later, Al.
And there are many Democrats and some Republicans in the same row boat. By opposing traditional power in the USA, these people have empowered the gangsters in OPEC.
How Barack Obama handles all of this will be very interesting to watch. He has the same problem all liberal lawmakers have: His resume is anti-drilling and anti-nuke. And those things are the only short-term solution to rising prices.
So a fascinating election just got more fascinating. Every time we fill up, votes are on the line.
And that's "The Memo."
Pinheads & Patriots
Beauty is indeed in the eye of the beholder. There's no question. But sometimes a consensus is not good on the appearance front.
For example, Gus the dog has now been voted the world's ugliest pooch. That happened at a fair in Northern California.
Now, this is not good for Gus' self-esteem. What canine would want to be the world's ugliest? So I am making Gus the dog a patriot simply because I want him to feel better. That's just the kind of guy I am.
On the pinhead front, hello, Al Gore. The Tennessee Center for Policy Research says the former vice president is still using a massive amount of energy at his Tennessee mansion — more than 20 times the national average.
The research group also says Mr. Gore has made about $100 million on his global warming projects. So it looks like Gore is a pinhead, but we would like to hear his side of things. He has an open invitation to appear on "The Factor."
We are energy concerned here. Candles are lighting me right now.
— You can catch Bill O'Reilly's "Talking Points Memo" and "Pinheads & Patriots" weeknights at 8 and 11 p.m. ET on the FOX News Channel and any time on foxnews.com/oreilly. Send your comments to: firstname.lastname@example.org