Several years ago Tom Friedman suggested that Congress raise the gas tax so as to bring the cost of gasoline to $4.00. Prophetically he understood that it would take $4 gasoline to cause Americans to leave behind gas guzzling Hummers, Suburbans, and Expeditions and start driving less and in smaller cars. Now that we've hit the $4 mark it seems he was right. $3 wasn't enough. Gas seems to be declining in price (it's in the high 3.80s around here). Friedman has argued that such a price increase is needed to do two things -- cut our usage in America and encourage the creation of energy alternatives.
Today he writes about an Israeli entrepreneur working on making Israel a totally electric car nation (powered by solar). The other visionary is a Texas oilman that wants to radically expand our use of wind. T. Boone Pickens is investing in 700 turbines for a Texas Panhandle wind farm. Driving across the country this summer we saw lots of land that can be used for either solar or wind. For now we're dependent on oil, but we'll need to quickly free ourselves. By doing so we free ourselves from meddling relationships in the Middle East, become energy self-sufficient and lessen our contributions to global warming. Not a band idea, really.