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Hard to Figure

June 13, 2018
By Dan Voigt , Emmetsburg News

I don't often like to comment publically on political issues, especially those that are being batted back and forth out in Washington D.C. One of the primary reasons I don't say much is because, like the average person out here in the heartland, I more or less believe that we are ignored by politicians, that is until they want our vote or our taxes.

The rest of the time, we don't even show up on the radar screen.

But what has been bothering me lately is the continuing battling back and forth in DC over the year-around authorization for refiners to produce E15 gasoline.

I'll be right up front - I use E15 in my vehicles and I have seen no noticeable loss of mileage or performance. I don't claim to be a master mechanic in any sense of the word. What I learned about engines I learned from my Dad, at his elbow, watching him repair engines out on the farm, and then what I?learned in high school Vocational Agriculture.

As I grew up, I tinkered with my vehicles, changing spark plug, oil, rotating tires, changing shocks, many maintenance things for the vehicles i?owned.

Over the years, as 10-percent Ethanol was first introduced, I heard the original "horror" stories of how those blends of alcohol would "eat your car's fuel system" and such. There were some issues, but they were addressed and today, Ethanol fuels are so reliable and economical, it simply defies common sense as to why their use wouldn't be promoted.

AH! There's the reason, right there in that last statement.

Common Sense.

Of course, anything that will cut in to the profits of our nation's refineries is obviously not good for the people - that is if your paycheck is signed by an oil refinery.

Therein lies the whole stumbling block of the E15 debate - Big oil resists anything that cuts into their profits. Blending gasoline with E15 requires less gasoline, so that means less $$$ for the oil companies.

In the meantime, two sectors of the public pay the price - First are the motorists paying for the fuel at the pump, and secondly is the producer who grows the corn that is used to create the Ethanol, a renewable fuel, that also creates less harmful carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.

let's recap a second. We live in farm country. Farmers grow corn. Corn is made into Ethanol. Ethanol can be blended with gasoline.Ethanol burns cleaner than straight gasoline and makes less carbon dioxide. Less Carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, less global warming. Less global warming, less melting of the polar ice caps. Less melting of the polar ice cap, Santa Claus is happy.

On the other side of the coin, more use of Ethanol means less use of gasoline, which means less money in the pockets of big oil companies, who are crying to our lawmakers at how bad Ethanol really is.

The saddest part of this whole reality is the fact that our lawmakers, who promised to represent the people, only represent the deepest pockets in the country - big oil.

I know there's an old saying that "Liars figure, but figures never lie." So for me to say that all of this doesn't figure, well maybe that's not such an appropriate statement. But in my way of thinking, something just isn't right when something so obviously beneficial just gets ignored by those in power.

A wise man once told me when dealing with the government, common sense was not tolerated. I'm sad to say that as the years go by, I'm having to agree with that.

And that just doesn't figure.



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