MTBE : State imposed carcinogen and neurotoxin in gasoline

Lenny Gray lenngray at calwest.net
Thu Sep 18 16:36:57 EST 1997

On Wed, 17 Sep 1997 11:39:35 -0500, "John H. Casada" <casada at uthscsa.edu>

>Howard Olson wrote:
>>         The time has come to expose the baltant disregard for public
>> well-being that MTBE represents and call for the impeachment of any
>> politician who supports it. This is an excellent opportunity for
>> libertarians to expose the hypocrisy  and malevolence of statism!
>> The government viciously and stubbornly refuses to acknowledge its
>> mistake and continues to pllute our bodies to coverup their
>> incompetence.
>Whoa, Howard!  Turn down the volume.  First, I don't know how a chemical
>can represent blantant disregard.

California has mandated the use of MTBE in gasoline.  It costs 
quite a bit -- at least 5 cents per gallon to the consumer -- 
decreases mileage by enough that the claim that it _increases_ 
polution cannot be easily dismissed, and seems to be a boondoggle. 

So it's not "the chemical" he's talking about, but the mandated 
use of it.

>                                  Second, your call for impeachment
>also seems premature.  Do you have any information as to how the
>regulations came to be law?  What interests were served?  What are the
>existing studies that show health effects?  You know, if you decided to
>approach this problem from a public education standpoint, the public
>might _vote_ out the policians who supported this (if they agreed with

It _was_ discussed, in detail, before the fact, and was rammed 
down the consumers' throats.  After being "in", it was evaluated 
and shown to be "bad".  But the powers-that-be conducted a media 
blitz, insisting that it was "good" and that the opponents were 
all kooks, and all efforts to have the _facts_ of the problem 
_verified_ by an appropriate entity were rejected.  The oil 
companies colluded with the government to restrict supply (via
claimed "inability" to produce the modified gas that MTBE must
be added _to_) and raised prices via this restricted supply.
Prices are still up in California, "excused" by the change in
the gas.  It's a little like the Tea Tax that the Bostonians
revolted against some time ago.

>       Thirdly, you freely use words like "viciously," "stubbornly,"
>"hypocrisy," and "malevolence" but do not show how these apply to this
>situation.  You seem to assume that simply noting that exposure to this
>chemical has adverse health effects justifies your name calling.  Can
>there be no honest dissent with your position?

He takes for granted that everyone is from California and has at 
least _heard_ how we got to where we are.  It is, of course, not 
true, that you all are out here, but since we _are_ the true 
center of the universe, it does seem to us that everybody would 
know what's going on here.  8)

>If you want to engage in productive discussion, may I suggest that you
>post a more complete account of your stance?

Yes, Howard, do that.


- Lenny Gray -

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