From renewables getting one tenth of the support that nuclear did in its infancy to conservative economists decrying the economically disastrous impact of coal, the world is not short of arguments for why supporting renewables makes sense from an economic, as well as environmental, perspective. Still, it's good to see that case being made over at Investors.com, where Rhone Resch argues that pure free market economics have never been a part of America's energy policies:
Sadly the readers' comments regurgitate the usual accusations of "socialism", but it's hard to deny that the fossil fuel and nuclear industries were built on the back of massive government support.
As America grew into an industrial power over the last 150 years, the federal government played an indispensable role in developing the nation's energy resources. Private-sector energy industries — from 19th-century coal through 20th-century oil, natural gas and nuclear energy — have been launched and sustained through supportive federal policies. Recognizing the benefit of accessible energy for all Americans, favorable policies to facilitate the production and use of these resources remain in place today.