A Free-Market Energy Blog

Holiday Happy: Energy Policy Victories in 2017

By Robert Bradley Jr. -- December 21, 2017

“There remains much to do in 2018. But the crony energies–those dependent on special government favor–are on notice that their time may be running short. Consumers and taxpayers come first in a free and prosperous commonwealth.”

It has been a good year for the master resource and public policy in the United States. The Trump reset of energy and climate policy has been the most dramatic in history in terms of free-market orientation. Trump’s reversing the Obama administration is what Ronald Reagan did to the Carter Administration’s energy policy back in 1981–but more so.

At yesterday’s White House briefing, Sarah Huckabee Sanders reviewed some of the energy highlights of the year.

As December winds down,’ she said, “I thought this would be a perfect opportunity to look back at what has been, by any measure, a historic year.” She continued:

Nearly 1.7 million new jobs have been created, and the unemployment rate has fallen to 4.1 percent, the lowest rate in 17 years. The stock market reached a record high more than 60 times and closed above 24,000 for the first time in history.

  • We’ve rolled back twenty-two regulations for every one new regulation, saving taxpayers over $8 billion and liberating America’s economy from the grip of bloated government….
  • We finally set up our nation on a path to not only energy independence, but energy dominance.
  • We approved the Keystone XL and Dakota Access pipelines, directed the EPA to end the job-killing war on coal, and upon the tax bill’s passage, will have opened up ANWR to responsible energy exploration.

The President has delivered on promise after promise, issue after issue, time after time, and we’re just getting started.

There certainly were disappointments in 2017, and none greater than the ‘swamp’ winning with the political energies of ethanol, wind power, solar power, and electric vehicles. The ethanol mandate survived a scare, as did a cutback of wind tax preferences in the just-passed tax overhaul.


There remains much to do in 2018. But the crony energies–those dependent on special government favor–are on notice that their time may be running short. Consumers and taxpayers come first in a free and prosperous commonwealth.

Here’s to a week of not thinking about energy (MasterResource will be ‘on vacation’ until January 2, 2018) and more energy-policy victories in the year ahead.


  1. John W. Garrett  

    Thanks for your good work and instructive words.

    Merry New Year !!


  2. Tom O  

    1.7 million jobs created. Unemployment rate at 4.1%. Am I impressed? Not a bit. Without knowing if those “new” jobs were full time, decent wage jobs or not doesn’t give me a warm and fuzzy feeling, since if they WERE, it would have been said so. Thus the majority, if not all of those jobs are probably part time, minimum wage. A question to ask at that point would be, how many new people entered the job market last year? Another would be were they able to find jobs?

    The unemployment rate is no more 4.1% than have I become a millionaire this year. I haven’t. When you base a number on how many people are applying for unemployment compensation that runs out after a period of time, that automatically drops unemployed people off the accounting sheet, if you will. So are they now magically employed? Not a chance, they are just as unemployed, just don’t count anymore.

    When they start giving an “employed rate” instead of an unemployment rate, I will look at the number again. The real question on this would be just how high is the percentage of employment eligible people that are working on full time jobs? It won’t be as low as 4.1% but it won’t be as high as an unemployment rate of 4.1% would suggest it would be. We need to be creating 5 to 10 million jobs a year – with no immigration – for the next decade if we want to get a “real” unemployment rate of 4.1%.

    There have been real positives this year from this administration, but I have no way of knowing that they actually “rolled back 22 regulations for every one new one.” The foreign policy seems to be in tatters and we are definitely not safer – no, North Korea can’t have built all the warheads and missiles that we are told since that takes a lot more money that they can generate, even if the labor is cheap. Look at how long it took the US to get to ICBMs from scratch. Do I believe that North Korea could perform all that AND the manufacturing processes needed in the last 5 to 10 years? Do I believe the moon is made of green cheese? How about no both times.

    If the world is not a safer place for us, it is not because of North Korea, it’s because we continue to create enemies by exercising military interventions and interfering in their internal affairs. Too bad this administration – and the previous ones as well – hadn’t taken a page from Putin’s playbook and find that helping people makes friends a lot faster than bullying them. It has always worked on a personal level, on a county level, and a state level, so why to hell not on an international level? And no, sending in carpetbaggers to steal their resources is not trying to make friends.


  3. Tom O  

    Stripping out the carriage returns and running a formatted comment into an almost incomprehensible mass doesn’t seem the right thing to do. Makes a detailed comment look so unorganized that no one would want to read it to start with. To borrow a phrase, “so sad.”


  4. JJLutz  

    Tom O;
    Where were you the last eight years when the numbers were just as you are claiming in your rant above? Where were you making complaints when the previous president gave away billions of dollars to bad players like North Korea, trying to play nice with a madman who used our dollars to build out his nuclear arsenal? Where were you complaining about deficits that drove our national debt to $20 TRILLION and spent ridiculous amounts on worthless “Renewable Energy”?


    • Tom O  

      I wasn’t smoking the same crap you were, that is for sure. This particular post is NOT about Obama or Bush’s claims – in case you didn’t notice. This article is about the current administration, therefore my comments are directed to THIS article and administration, not the previous one. Who taught you to think or read or comprehend?

      Obama DID return some of Iran’s money to them that had been withheld, true. Obama did NOT throw billions at North Korea, or their mad man dictator who shows far more intelligence than you did in your rant. Our national debt has been driven by waste in military, but of course, you probably never noticed that the Pentagon “lost” trillions.

      Bottom line is I an not going to address what the last 4 bozos have done as president in an article about the current president. And last but not least, perhaps you should try to understand what I wrote in its entirety instead of using the usual twitter practice of looking at the first 140 characters.


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