Thursday, February 02, 2006

Twelve Steps to Energy Efficiency

In President Bush's State of the Union Address he made a surprising admission. America, he said, is "addicted to oil." President Bush, of course, knows something about addiction but he is also an oilman and I found his words very puzzling. The Saudi Ambassador was understandably upset. The White House issued a clarification the next day stating that some people had misunderstood his remarks. In fact, it turns out there was an underlying message in what he was saying. President Bush is very clever when it comes to underlying messages. Many people had no idea why he thought there was anything wrong with the Dred Scott decision when he was asked to name a Supreme Court decision he disagreed with in one of the debates. Later, it was reported that he was actually sending a coded message in favor of overturning v. Roe v. Wade. So when Bush said that we are "addicted to oil" in his State of the Union Speech, he wasn't really talking about oil per se. As anyone familiar with Alcoholics Anonymous and the Twelve Step program knows, in order to become sober you must turn yourself over to God. So what he was really saying was that America must turn itself over to God. Below I have listed what Bush's Twelve Steps to Energy Efficiency might look like:

Twelve Steps to Energy Efficiency

1. We admitted we were powerless over oil; that our lives had become unmanageable.
In his speech Bush acknowledged that without oil it would be very difficult to power our homes, offices and automobiles. Step one accomplished.
2. Came to believe that a power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.
I'm not sure if this is supposed to be Dick Cheney or God.
3. Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him.
In other words mandatory school prayer, the Ten Commandments on the walls of every courtroom, nativity scenes in all of our public parks and overturning Roe v. Wade.
4. Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.
5. Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.
Steps 4 and 5 can be accomplished by appointing a commission like the 9/11 commission to look into American morality and it could start by calling in all of the Hollywood studio heads to testify. One of the great things about Alcoholics Anonymous is that it's secret and anonymous so Dick Cheney could also call another one of his secret energy commissions to write some legislation.
6. Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.
7. Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.
I think we might start by removing the people that the Rev. Jerry Falwell said were responsible for 9/11: "the pagans, and the abortionists, and the feminists, and the gays and the lesbians." We should probably add the ACLU to this list.
8. Made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all.
9. Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.

This could come in the form of tax breaks for churches and oil companies.
10. Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.
More secret commissions, I think. No need to get crazy with public mea culpas.
11. Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God, as we understood Him, praying only for knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry that out.
In addition to school prayer, Bush could turn his next State of the Union address into a national prayer meeting to pray for "power" to heat our homes and offices and run our automobiles.
12. Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.
One way we might carry this message is to pay some conservative commentators to plant stories in newspapers. I volunteer my services for free, though of course any small remuneration for my trouble would be greatly appreciated.

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Ardsgaine said...

That's pretty funny. The analogy seems a bit skewed though. If oil is an addiction, then the oil companies are like liquor stores, so it doesn't seem like the 12 steps would include giving them tax breaks. Perhaps we should make it against the law to sell gas on Sundays or after 2am. If the gas stations are closed more often, then people will buy less gas, right? Problem solved.

benmerc said...

I am sure for #2 it would be both...
But who's pant leg does he run to tug first when he's in trouble?

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