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THE BLOATOSAURUS

    Once a bloatosaurus was invited to advise the government on energy policy.
    “In a word,” the bloatosaurus responded without hesitation at the first of many meetings held in secret to promote a free and full exchange of ideas, “drill drill drill!”
    “Shouldn’t we at least consider some alternative approaches as well?” asked one of the company of staff members appointed to assist the bloatosaurus in compiling its recommendations.
    “What for? Listen, I shouldn’t need to tell anybody here that I’m something of an expert when it comes to Big Oil and Big Gas. Besides, I’ve got longtime friends in reserve all over the place just waiting to be of service, don’t forget. That combination gives ‘yours truly’ special insight, I think I can say, on both sides of the energy question.”
    “Both sides?”
    “You bet. Where to drill and when.”
    “But—”
    “Do you have any idea how much energy we need every day to keep what I’m flattered to hear referred to as ‘the bloatosaurus lifestyle’ going?” 
    The company of staff members thumbed their briefing books in search of a figure.
    “Don’t waste your time. Boggles the mind, take my word for it. So let’s stop beating around the bush and make some tough decisions. Here’s what I propose in two words. National forests.”
    “National forests?”
    “National forests. We need ‘em. Big time. Pumping out all the oil and gas reserves locked up there now is the way to go, but it’ll delay the inevitable moment of truth only so long. We’ll need to make more efficient use of the trees as well.”
    “Excuse me, the trees?”
    “Big time. But who can wait millions of years for trees to turn into oil and gas on their own? We just don’t have the luxury of that kind of time frame. So I propose we fast-track some no-bid contracts and get started pronto on speeding things up by clear-cutting and burying ‘em deep, one and all.”
    “But if we cut down and bury all the trees, won’t air pollution get worse? After all, they absorb—”
    “Exactly, pal. When the air gets thick enough, we can drill there too.”