It’s common knowledge, among those intent on maintaining their automobile’s mechanical soundness, that there are certain rules to follow. For example, one should regularly inspect the belts and hoses of their engine for cracks, leaks, etc. Another commonly known tip can be found at Valvoline’s website (scroll down the page):

Proper inflation pressure makes tires last longer, and it also improves the vehicle’s fuel economy.

Yet, how many of you are aware that Valvoline’s recommendation is, in reality, Barack Obama’s Energy Plan®?

From TIME, Michael Grunwald writes, in The Tire-Gauge Solution: No Joke,

How out of touch is Barack Obama? He’s so out of touch that he suggested that if all Americans inflated their tires properly and took their cars for regular tune-ups, they could save as much oil as new offshore drilling would produce. Gleeful Republicans have made this their daily talking point, Rush Limbaugh is having a field day, and the Republican National Committee is sending tire gauges labeled “Barack Obama’s Energy Plan” to Washington reporters.

But who’s really out of touch? The Bush administration estimates that expanded offshore drilling could increase oil production by 200,000 barrels per day by 2030. We use about 20 million barrels per day, so that would meet about 1% of our demand two decades from now. Meanwhile, efficiency experts say that keeping tires inflated can improve gas mileage by 3%, and regular maintenance can add another 4%. Many drivers already follow their advice, but if everyone else did, we could reduce demand several percentage points immediately. In other words: Obama is right.

Ignoring the careless manner with which Grunwald tosses numbers around – is he serious? Is he so out of touch with reality that he sees a common sense car care tip as now, somehow, being part of Barack Obama’s change we can believe in?

What future addenda will we see to Barack Obama’s Energy Plan®, Grunwald? Tax rebates for driving with windows closed? Economic incentives for dropping the tailgate on pickup trucks?

Yeah, Obama is right. And so is Valvoline.

Update: Via Political Punch (ABC News), From the Fact Check Desk: Are Obama’s Claims About Inflating Car Tires Accurate?

Filed under: DemocratsEnergyRusty

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