Corn Commentary

Ethanol Bashing Fest Becoming Transparent to Some

Gluttonous profits: it cost the Saudis a bit less than one dollar to suck a barrel’s worth of oil from the ground. So, at $80 per barrel they make a profit of more than 8,000%.

Marc J. Rauch, Exec. Vice President/Co-Publisher of THE AUTO CHANNEL doesn’t just smell a rat regarding the recent bashing of biofuels like ethanol, but rather felt like he tripped over a big fat alley dweller called big oil.

The headline on his latest column says it all – “Not Satisfied with Gluttonous Profits and Environmental Catastrophe, the Oil Industry Works Overtime to Malign Alternative Fuels.”

Rauch takes a look at just one example of how large petroleum interests are trying to discredit the great advances in supply and efficiency being experienced by U.S. ethanol producers. Their current target is the effort to increase the amount of ethanol being blended in gasoline from 10% to 15% per gallon.

Specifically he takes exception to the information – which looks amazingly like unsubstantiated propaganda – being posted and promoted at

The bogus “news” entity’s latest gambit says the auto industry is urging the EPA to delay allowing E15 without naming a single company or a single individual. Some folks at GM and Ford might be disturbed to hear this revelation given the years and billions of dollars they have spent developing and promoting ethanol use and infrastructure.

“The story also did not say what tests were done, to which vehicles, when, and by whom. Nor did it say what kind of damage was sustained. There was no supportive data or information of any kind. The story was merely one large bogus threat sound bite designed to denigrate a viable alternative fuel versus gasoline’s dominance,” Rauch writes, adding “If oil industry lackeys can convince enough people that there is no viable alternative to gasoline then we are left to believe that catastrophes such as oil spills and oil-induced wars are necessary evils that we just have to accept.”

In the category of strange but true, on the same day another news article says the Arab world need $144 billion to invest in meeting future food needs. In a Bloomberg/BusinessWeek article Tareq al- Zadjali, director general of the Arab Organization for Agriculture Development, is quoted as saying, “Arab countries need to invest $144 billion in agriculture between now and 2030 to meet the demand for food for their growing populations.”

So, if we need oil and they need food can good old fashioned bartering be far behind? Maybe farmers should hold out for 8,000 percent return on their investment?