I recently watched a TV ad where a guy sticks what looks very much like yummy sweetcorn in his gastank and "fills 'r 'up ".
You may have seen it. I wrote an article here based on it.
When I sat down to write about it, I had two thoughts I wanted to convey, one big, one small.
The small one what if a starving kid in Darfur could see that ad, and what would he think? Maybe
"Why is that guy putting that corn in his truck instead of eating it? I 'd like to eat it ".
The big one why use good farming land to fill F150 gastanks when 1600 kids a day are dying from hunger-related causes?
Five Guinnesses certainly did not help with the construction of the piece.
Here 's my well-deserved slap on the wrist from a man who really knows, the CEO of the US Corngrowers Association who took the trouble to personally email me and put me straight.
Dear Mr. Lloyd - My point is that there is no shortage of corn. There
is no conflict between food and fuel. We have a surplus and the ability to
produce tremendous amounts more. Sweet corn is not what is used to make
ethanol. Prices for corn have been depressed for the last several years
because of huge production. Use for ethanol will pull down some of the
surplus and raise prices and stimulate more production.
The conflict you allude to is not there at all and in fact, your
arguements run counter to the point you make. When corn is processed into
ethanol the starch is removed and what is left is a high protein, fiberous
byproduct that goes for livestock feed - dairy, beef, etc. There is
research into seeing if it can be used for human consumption. Only a third
of corn kernal is used to make ethanol, the rest is a byproduct. Ethanol
is green. It is renewable. It does not conlict with food production and in
fact will stimulate more. Ethanol in fact is 190 proof alcohol when it
comes out of the plant and is consumable by humans. The federal government
requires it to be "denatured" by adding gasoline to it so that it is not
fit for human consumption.
Anyway, there is a real and fascinating story in all of this, but it is
much different than what you wrote about. If you are interested, I would
be glad to share more information.
Rick Tolman, CEO National Corn Growers Association
I am hereby told !
Let 's step back a little though. If you are still reading this, I just had another thought.
So, with all humility and respect; -
George W Bush, Richard Cheney, Condoleezza Rice, Douglas Feith, Mr. Wolfowitz, General Pace, Mr. Gonzalez, General Hayden, Mr.Santorum, Mr Pombo, Mr. Lay, Mr. Skilling, Mr.Rumsfeld, Mr.DeLay, Mr Ney, Mr.Lieberman, Mr.Bremer, Mr.Frist, and the rest of you cast of god-fearing born-again Christians who 've run this country and others into the ground for the last six years; - WWJD?
If an evil godless liberal like me can cough up to mistakes, it can 't possibly be too good for you.
Let 's have some truth. We can handle it.