No, we’re not talking about their idiotic protests, more on that later….
There was a great front-page article in yesterday’s Wall Street Journal about France and it’s zeal for nuclear power. They are so well-known as a so-called “green” economy that it usually startles people to discover that they get almost 80% of their power form nuclear plants. They have built them ambitiously and have an excellent safety record with them. Given their incredibly burdensome employment laws, their reliable, affordable power is one way they can stay in the global competitiveness game.
Here in the US, it’s a different story. We remain hamstrung by some pretty lousy policy choices we’ve made on energy. The enviros have all but achieved a moratorium on nuclear plants here. They don’t want us to drill for oil, or for natural gas, or to mine — or burn — coal either, by the way. And so we sit and watch our energy prices soar while our competitors can only look at us and scratch their heads. We are the only country that restricts access to its own natural resources. Who else among our competitors would be dumb enough to do that?
And so we dither while France of all countries is bullish on nuclear. Maybe it’s time we revisited our strident opposition (as a nation) to nuclear and begin to emulate our competitors. It’s about the only area — other than their food and wine — where we’d want to emulate the French.
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