“Conservation Can Work,” by Andrew Sullivan, AndrewSullivan.com, http://www.andrewsullivan.com/index.php?dish_inc=archives/2005_01_23_dish_archive.html#110686746926682550, 27 January 2005.
One of my first posts was on the need for cutting oil consumption. Even a margial cut in oil hurts the tyrants who enslave their people, and forces democratic reforms. Money is power, and taking money away from powerful forces can change history.
This is not saying that we need to boycott Middle East oil. Or that China and India should be prevented from making their investments. But marginal demand is power, and if we can reduce the marginal demand for oil we can spead reforms throughout the Greater Middle East.
A writer to Andrew Sullivan agrees
What Klingle doesn’t understand is that it is not about just states “sponsoring terrorism”, but forcing these sclerotic Middle East economies to face the same forces of dynamism that the rest of the world deals with it, resulting in more liberal societies. Not all countries in the Middle East have lots of oil. In fact countries like Qatar, Bahrain and the UAE have very little of it, and not coincidentally they represent the most liberal societies in the region. There is a strong argument that the societal unrest building in Iran is due in large part to their exploding population outgrowing the Mullah’s oil revenue, crippling their ability to buy off interests within society. We could help push them over the edge with a concerted effort to cut our oil demand.