Greensburg Daily News, Greensburg, IN

Editorials

April 17, 2012

Our View: Green rides, thick wallets

Greensburg — After pump prices reached $3.79 a gallon nationally, Congressman Joe Donnelly fired off a letter to President Obama.

"We must act now to soften the impact high gas prices are having on our

economy," the Indiana Democrat wrote March 26. He urged the president to

release oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve and assist efforts to expand domestic drilling.

Such recommendations are good material for Donnelly's senatorial campaign

this fall but ineffective solutions for soaring gasoline costs. The U.S. produces about 5.6 million barrels of oil a day Ð a nine-year high, the president said last month Ð yet Greensburg motorists still pay nearly $4 a gallon.

What we need from lawmakers are initiatives that encourage conservation and put money in our pockets. Lisa Margonelli, publisher of EnergyTrap.org, has such a plan.

Margonelli proposes a federal auto loan guarantee program. Consumers would

be offered notes at 5 percent interest to buy vehicles that get more than 35 mpg.

"This is better than the stimulus programs suggested by either party, as it would increase middle-class disposable income by up to $3,500 while creating jobs in Detroit," she says, "and it would lower fuel imports and greenhouse gas emissions to boot."

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average American household spent $178 a month fueling its vehicles in 2010. Gas prices through 2011 increased an average of 74 cents per gallon, or more than 26 percent.

So, the typical family spent $225 a month on gasoline last year Ð and we're on track for a repeat in 2012. America could use another program like Cash for Clunkers, but one that actually helps the middle class.

Cash for Clunkers cost $2.8 billion but benefited only the financially secure. Credit was tight in 2009. Many couldn't qualify for a new-car loan. The oil industry receives about $4 billion a year in subsidies and tax breaks. Low income households get tax credits to retrofit their homes for energy efficiency.

We need an incentive aimed at middle-income workers.

By financing a federal car loan guarantee with a portion of the oil industry's government giveaway, we could drive down fuel costs for wage-earners, reduce oil consumption and increase demand for gasoline-sipping vehicles.

1
Text Only
Editorials
  • The long journey of me and my 'motorsikle' Over 45 years ago, I considered anything on fewer than four wheels as a quick way to meet my Maker well ahead of schedule.All I’d ever heard from four-wheel enthusiasts was “Them thangs is dangerous.” I heeded that advice until a motorcycling friend

    July 15, 2014

  • Our view: Throw open the doors

    As allegations and scandals continue to explode about hidden wait lists and cooked books at VA medical care facilities across the country, with hints of even more heinous findings to come, we have to wonder why it's business as usual in our nation's

    May 29, 2014

  • Why I still have faith in Congress From the perspective of decades, there is good reason to believe that Congress can and will do better. It's depressing to read poll after poll highlighting Americans' utter disdain for Congress. But it's my encounters with ordinary citizens at public

    May 29, 2014

  • Stay informed, stay prepared, stay safe I can remember last November when I was on the phone and working at my computer to try to help get the message out about the dangerous storms facing much of the state. Many of our local towns were under tornado warnings for much of the day, includin

    April 29, 2014

  • Making a house a home On a shelf in the home office of Gov. Mike Pence are some cowboy spurs and an old pair of riding boots -- signs of how the first-term executive and his family relax in their spare time. Last summer, one of Pence's daughters cleaned stalls in a horse

    April 29, 2014

  • Hoosier farmers are Indiana heroes Many in our community know that farming is not just a profession; it is a lifestyle. Agriculture in Indiana is a large and diverse industry that plays a vital role in the economic stability of our state. Many of our neighbors, friends and families ge

    April 3, 2014

  • Thanks for letting me tell your stories I didn't want to be a reporter, or even a writer, when I was a little girl. From the age of eight, I wanted to be an orthopedic surgeon. I never even considered being anything else. All my little girl fantasies of being an astronaut or a rock star we

    April 3, 2014

  • The empty chair and memories On the wall in our living room hangs a large painting that I bought at a small art show several years ago. It is a simple painting with rich, deep gold and burgundy oil colors that I enjoy. Just off center in this painting is a cozy, green arm chair

    November 26, 2013

  • Alzheimer's awareness brings passion for purple Dear Editor: Every October the country goes pink in support of breast cancer research. It's a beautiful sight. The underlying message is one of a vast network of support from family, friends, and total strangers. I would love to s

    September 10, 2013

  • March on Washington - then and now In 1960, I watched John Lewis and other black college students march past our Nashville, Tenn., high school on their trips downtown to the sit-ins. In 1963, while I was preparing for my senior year, Medgar Evers

    September 3, 2013

Featured Ads
AP Video
Crash Kills Teen Pilot Seeking World Record LeBron James Sends Apology Treat to Neighbors Raw: Funeral for Man Who Died in NYPD Custody Migrants Back in Honduras After US Deports Israeli American Reservist Torn Over Return Raw: ISS Cargo Ship Launches in Kazakhstan Six Indicted in StubHub Hacking Scheme Former NTSB Official: FAA Ban 'prudent' EPA Gets Hip With Kardashian Tweet Bodies of MH17 Victims Arrive in the Netherlands Biden Decries Voting Restrictions in NAACP Talk Broncos Owner Steps Down Due to Alzheimer's US, UN Push Shuttle Diplomacy in Mideast Trump: DC Hotel Will Be Among World's Best Plane Crashes in Taiwan, Dozens Feared Dead Republicans Hold a Hearing on IRS Lost Emails Raw: Mourners Gather As MH17 Bodies Transported Robot Parking Valet Creates Stress-free Travel Raw: Fight Breaks Out in Ukraine Parliament Disabled Veterans Memorial Nearing Completion
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.