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John Stossel Relies on "Myths, Lies and Downright Stupidity" to Knock Alternative Fuels

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Hey John, give us a break!

By Marc J. Rauch
Exec. Vice President/Co-Publisher

It's rather ironic that TV personality John Stossel wrote the book "Myths, Lies and Downright Stupidity: Get Out the Shovel..." given that everything he reports on concerning ethanol is based on myths, lies and downright stupidity.

In particular, the stupidity is his lack of knowledge that corn is only one of many base materials that can be used to produce ethanol. So without even arguing points over whether corn is an efficient or economical raw material to use, let alone whether government subsidies for its use is justifiable, he is engaging in a dishonest presentation of the subject.

His argument should not be whether corn-based ethanol should be used to replace or make a dent in our domestic use of gasoline, the argument should be focused on ethanol produced from any raw material.

Mr. Stossel might as well present the case that milk is not a nutritious substance to feed children and argue the point by only including spider’s milk in the investigation, while artfully ignoring cow’s milk, goat’s milk or human breast milk.

If, in any given geographic region, corn produced for ethanol is not economical or environmentally friendly then corn shouldn’t be used, period – end of discussion. At that point, cattails, switchgrass, beet sugar, cane sugar, seaweed, garbage, discarded paper products, and wood chips can all be considered as raw materials. In fact, some of these items can be far more efficient than corn in terms of ultimate yield. Moreover, cattails, switchgrass, garbage and seaweed need no fertilizing help. If anything, efforts are usually required to eliminate or reduce their abundant availability.

The myths and lies of his position are those promulgated by Mr. Stossel in all the arguments that he and his guests make regarding government subsidies. Stossel deals with the issue of subsidies for (corn) ethanol as if only corn ethanol receives subsidies. Never does he acknowledge that the oil/gasoline industry has been and is a continuous beneficiary of huge government subsidies; far, far in excess of anything contemplated to help encourage the production and use of ethanol. He has never explained to his audience that the whole reason why the petroleum oil industry was able to grow into the monolith that it has is because of government intervention and assistance in support of it, to the detriment of alcohol and any other fuel alternatives.

Two days ago we published an analysis of a previous John Stossel video program that dealt with ethanol. That program includes an interview with Jerry Taylor, a Senior Fellow at the Cato Institute. All of Mr. Taylor’s comments, in addition to the information that he wrote in a report for the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, were myths, lies and downright stupidity compounded with gross insensitively for his lack of concern for the lives of American citizens and servicemen. This published story can be found on by CLICKING HERE

We believe that if John Stossel and Fox News or CNN or any general media outlet wants to debate the issue of the viability of alternative fuels and energy sources that they should do it with a fair balance of information. We say, “Put aside all the money you’re getting from the oil and gasoline interests and take some interest in the peoples’ best interest.