Oil and the 2008 Election
Michael T. Klare is the Five College Professor of Peace and World Security Studies (a joint appointment at Amherst College, Hampshire College, Mount Holyoke College, Smith College, and the University of Massachusetts at Amherst), and Director of the Five College Program in Peace and World Security Studies (PAWSS), a position he has held since 1985. Before assuming his present post, he served as Director of the Program on Militarism and Disarmament at the Institute for Policy Studies in Washington, D.C. (1977-84).
Professor Klare has written widely on U.S. defense policy, the arms trade, and world security affairs. He is the author of Blood and Oil: The Dangers and Consequences of America’s Growing Dependency on Imported Petroleum (Metropolitan Books, 2004), along with many other books. He is also the defense correspondent of The Nation, a Contributing Editor of Current History, and has contrbuted to numerous publications.
Michael Klare serves on the board of directors of the Arms Control Association, and the advisory board of the Arms Division of Human Rights Watch; he is also a member of the Committee on International Security Studies of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.
Question: Which candidate is best qualified to take on resource scarcity?
Michael Klare: I would say that the democratic candidates at this point Senator Clinton and Senator Obama have virtually similar policies, which call for a rapid and big increase in the development of petroleum alternatives in greater conservation of energy. There is no difference between them on these issues. So, either one of them on these issues on my mind would be equally attractive. I think they don’t go far enough quite personally, I think they need to go much further.
Question: There will be no oil man in the White House in 2009. What does the mean for the oil companies?
Michael Klare: Bear in mind that for a dramatic change in policy to take place, we need a congress that is free of influence from the oil companies and not just the oil companies, but the big coal and the natural gas companies and the rest. We are going to need much greater emphasize on petroleum energy alternatives and with out a clean sweep of congress we are not going to make the kind of progress that we need, so we need political reform that is much broader than just the new president and I think that is going to take time. It is going to require political campaign reform. Now, there been efforts in that direction and in fact Senator McCain has been a supporter of that in the past, I think he has backed away from that, but he was once a supporter of that effort. We need much more of that.
Recorded on: 3/14/08
There will be no oil man in the White House come 2009. What does that mean for American oil companies?