On Monday, Obama’s Department of Interior released a new report detailing how energy development on federal lands helped to create 1.5 million jobs and contributed $275 billion to the economy in just the last fiscal year. To that, I have only one thing to say: Ya’ think?!
The Interior Department claimed its activities contributed a total of $385 billion to the economy in fiscal 2011, with energy development comprising more than 71 percent of that amount.
So, all of that wealth and economic growth created as a direct byproduct of the federal government allowing some of “its” (a.k.a., our) lands to be developed for energy production — was it because of all of the permits that the Interior Department has lately given out for solar panels? Nein. Granted, conventional fuels are obviously much larger industries with larger operations, but given the track record of the Interior Department’s regulatory partner-in-crime, the Department of Energy, on gifting solar companies with loan guarantees, I find myself obliged to wonder what the Interior Department is doing playing politics with our lands at all: