RUSH: Richard in the Keys in Florida. It’s a great place, and it’s great to have you with us. Welcome, sir.
CALLER: Thank you. Rush, you mentioned algae, and I know that Obama in his speech yesterday or the day before talked about algae as an alternative for fuel. My business is Kent BioEnergy. It’s probably the leading company in the world, at least in the United States, in actually growing algae.
RUSH: Wait. What is the name of your company? Did you just give me the name of it?
CALLER: Yeah, Kent BioEnergy.
CALLER: No, Kent, like Clark Kent, Superman.
CALLER: Yeah. Most of the expertise that exists in the country and the world today in algae is in the laboratory. A lot of theoretical aspects of what you can do with algae, perhaps a hundred times make more oil out of algae than corn, things like that. The problem is actually implementing that in the field and doing it in real life situations with the real circumstances of nature and so forth. Doing it that way you find that you can, in fact, produce algae that can produce biofuels. The problem is you can’t do it at an economical price. There’s a lot of factors that go into this, one of which of course is selection of algae and so forth, which, you know, obviously is hard. People think of algae as the scum in ponds and so forth. And actually that’s not what we’re really dealing with. Algae, if you looked at it, living algae is a micro-organism that’s so small when you look at it, if you had a glass of it it would be clear like limeade, it doesn’t look scummy because it’s living. So the big problem is getting the algae out of the water. Now, we have certain technologies that can do that, but it’s very expensive, and then we have technologies, the other thing you’ve gotta do is get the oil out of the algae, and that also can be done, but it’s very expensive. So unless oil, you know, gets to $300 a barrel, none of this technology, at the moment, is gonna be very effective.
RUSH: Let me ask you two questions. First question, does burning algae, using it in this way emit carbon dioxide?
CALLER: Yeah, it’s a —
RUSH: So it emits a greenhouse gas?
CALLER: Yeah. Well, it’s carbon dioxide, sure.
RUSH: Okay. The second thing, I read somewhere over the weekend, I don’t remember the number, but it was a phenomenal number that to create a gasoline equivalent gallon of fuel from algae would take so much algae that it was preposterous to me. What is that ratio?
CALLER: Well, I don’t know. We actually don’t burn algae. What you do is you extract from algae that produces a biofuel, and you extract that biofuel from the algae, and that’s what you burn. So, you know, you have to measure that in looking at the number of acres you would need to produce so many barrels and so forth. And it’s quite variable, depending on the actual algae you can grow and the kind of technology that you’ll have applied —
RUSH: Right. But right now it’s not practicable at all, right?
CALLER: Even if you could do it, and even if you could do it efficiently and so forth, you’re gonna still deal with a huge number of acres in this country that you would require for that. That’s not an impossibility, if the technology were there. But you’re talking about —
RUSH: Look how much oil it takes. Look at the oil reserves. I mean that’s not a tiny little place all the oil comes from. It’s huge. Richard, thanks for the call. This guy is so out of his league, to throw out there, “I’m looking at algae.” It’s patently absurd. In a sane world this guy would be laughed out of office, not voted out.
RUSH: Tom in Grand Forks, North Dakota. You’re next, sir. It’s great to have you on the EIB Network.
CALLER: Hey, Rush? How you doing? Great honor to speak with you, sir.
RUSH: Thank you, sir, very much! I’m doing quite well. Appreciate your asking.
CALLER: A quick shout-out to the AA community. I want to say hello to all my buddies out there, and I finally saw your episode of Family Guy and thought it was great.
RUSH: Thank you. Thank you very much.
CALLER: Yeah! Now, Bo told me to get straight to the point and I apologize to him for me for not doing so, but what I want to know is: Where is the derision from the mainstream media over Barack Obama’s algae solution versus George Bush’s switchgrass solution?
RUSH: Well, I’d forgotten about that.
CALLER: I haven’t, and I also remember your incident with the shopping carts. Okay? I’ve been listening to you since 1986.
RUSH: Ha. The homeless shopping carts!
CALLER: What’s that?
RUSH: What did Bush say? Switchgrass was gonna be an alternative energy source?
CALLER: Yes. He had proposed that we use alternate sources of energy such as switchgrass. He used it as an example — to go ahead and produce biofuels to go ahead and use for gasoline and diesel fuel and whatnot.
RUSH: My gosh, I had totally forgotten about that.
CALLER: I haven’t. Like you are a talent on loan from God, God has cursed me with a long memory, okay?
CALLER: I can remember pretty much everything that you’ve ever said.
RUSH: Yeah. Well, I know what that long memory thing is like. It is a curse.
CALLER: (laughing) Yeah, I know. And believe me or not, you know, believe me, sometimes it’s a curse. And I’ll tell you what, when I hear about things like this, I’m thinking like, “Okay, where’s the double standard here,” you know?
RUSH: It is, there’s no question, but there always has been such a double standard, and there always will. Well, it’s like now in the gas price itself. Now it’s higher than it’s ever been. We’ve never had $5-a-gallon in this country. We’ve never had it. Now we do! And all the news stories are, “Ah, it’s not a problem for Obama. It’s not his fault. Here is poor Obama. This is what’s causing it. Can he survive this in the election?” That’s the way these stories are now framed. Yeah, I was gonna talk about Calypso Louie and his fear and all that, but I’ll try to carry that over ’til tomorrow. I’ve got a lot of stuff to carry over. I knew I wasn’t gonna get it all in. We try to get as much of it as possible, but that’s it, time ‘s up.
RUSH: Yeah, I just got from Koko a brief excerpt of my reaction to Bush on this switchgrass for oil, and apparently I just ripped into it. Big time. I was highly critical of it. So, see? In addition to everything else, I, El Rushbo, am consistent.