(Dis) Believing the Ads

I live in Colorado, which is considered one of the battleground states and we are being bombarded by political ads.

In this morning’s, Denver Post I read that in August alone, 501(c)(4) organizations spent $1.78 million running anti-Schaeffer (R) ads and $4.73 million in anti-Udall (D) ads.  Most of these ads are being sponsored by American Future Fund of Iowa, a newly minted political-action type organization most likely funded by Big Oil.  This race is to replace Wayne Allard, one of the country’s 5 worst senators according to Time magazine.

One of the anti-Udall ads caught our attention because it claims the United States has more oil resources than Saudia Arabia!  My husband heard that and said “What?!”  (He did a 4-month stint in Saudi Arabia in 1980 for Aramco.)  Here’s the ad:

I searched the Washington Post’s archives and found only one article that even mentioned Saudi Arabia on June 19, 2008.  Unfotunately, you have to pay $3.95 to see the entire article, so I called the phone number provided for Mark Udall.

The number the ad provides is one of the political offices that isn’t allowed to discuss political ads, but she sweetly gave me the phone number of Udall’s research department.  Aha!  I was on to something.

As it turns out, the only way the claim that we have more oil resources than Saudi Arabia could be true, is if oil shale is included in that statistic.  If you are not from the West you may not know that it takes an inordinate amount of water to process oil shale and it is extremely unfriendly to the environment.  And Colorado and the West do not have an unlimited supply of water. 

That quote from the Washington Post?  Turns out they are quoting George W. Bush when he made a statement urging Congress to lift the ban on offshore/oil shale drilling. 

I already feel better.


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