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The crash in gas prices strikes at the heart of a traditional green argument — that rising energy prices will eventually force a conversion to green energy. To hear them tell it, dwindling oil and gas supplies will drive energy prices into the stratosphere, turning the expensive “green” energy sources into profitable enterprises overnight. They’ve been making this argument since the first solar energy boom back in the 1970s, and, so far, nothing.

A rare piece of good news from the Rust Belt: residents of states like Pennsylvania and Ohio will be a little warmer this winter as they cling bitterly, in the President’s famous phrase, to their God and their guns.

The extensive shale gas deposits discovered deep underground in Pennsylvania and Ohio are making (natural) gas cheaper for everyone. The Wall Street Journal reported Thursday that the high volume of gas pumping has sent gas prices plummeting to a two-year low.

What looks like bad news for energy companies is good news for consumers, who will find heating their homes through the winter much cheaper than in years past. In an age of cutbacks, cash-strapped families will be happy to see a drop in the cost of living, freeing up money for other priorities.

This strikes at the heart of a traditional green argument—that rising energy prices will eventually force a conversion to green energy. To hear them tell it, dwindling oil and gas supplies will drive energy prices into the stratosphere, turning the expensive “green” energy sources into profitable enterprises overnight. They’ve been making this argument since the first solar energy boom back in the 1970s, and, so far, nothing.

Meanwhile, the gas boom offers the Rust Belt its best shot to recover.  Brown jobs in the gas and oil energy may not have the glamor of beautiful (though, tragically, mostly imaginary) green jobs, but the pay is good and will help stop the decline of the middle class. And cheap energy won’t just give consumers a few extra bucks in their pockets; it reduces manufacturing costs and gives investors another reason to make a few things in the USA.

Fighting the gas boom while pumping money into corrupt, failing ventures like Solyndra makes good sense to the greens; it makes no sense at all to a lot of middle class voters in the Middle West. You will probably hear a lot about this issue next fall.