Opinion: Grit and technology can bring America back to energy independent status

The most important way to bring America back to the world leader we were before last January.

Robert Shoemake’s May 30 letter was spot-on. The current administration has led us through a botched (and deadly) Afghanistan retreat and to record-setting inflation, historically high energy and gas prices and general malaise.

Alaskans are seeing supply shortages and staffing challenges (due to the feds propping up an entire generation and making them more government-dependent than any since the Great Depression).

When it comes to energy costs, Southeast Alaska is blessed with hydropower that has protected it from the increases seen elsewhere. However, Juneau’s gas price has still soared from $3.30 a gallon to $5.15 in a year, and there’s no short-term relief in sight.

President Joe Biden has tried slight-of-hand to trick Americans into believing his administration has a handle on energy costs. He’s drained record amounts of resources from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve and pushed for increased reliance on electric vehicles for citizens’ transportation solutions.

The one thing he has refused to do so far is the one that would have the largest and most important impact: unleash American oil, gas and mineral opportunities. Stop listening to radical environmentalists and their cries of “just transition,” and instead, let American energy flourish, using grit and technology to bring America back to energy independent status.

That simple – yet crucial – action may be the single-most important way to bring America back to the world leader we were before last January. It can’t happen soon enough.

Rick Whitbeck,


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