One of the many nice things about having a Republican back in the White House will be watching the left tutor us on how a truly loyal opposition behaves. No cynical partisan pleasure at bad economic news, no gleeful hand-rubbing over higher energy prices, no cartoonish demonization of the incumbent, no manufactured outrage over “extremist” policies that melts away once a Democrat adopts them. Just true blue Team America, straight through for four years. Like they were with Bush.

Believe it or not, I’m old enough to remember when leftists thought higher gas prices were something to root for in the abstract. So is David Harsanyi:

Gas prices are spiking. That’s great news, right? We have to wean ourselves off the stuff. At least that’s what we’ve been hearing for years. Oil is dirty. We import it from nations that hate our guts (like Canada!). And moreover, we’re running out. Oil is “finite.” Finite much in the way water is finite.

So why aren’t Democrats making the case that the spike in prices is a good thing? Isn’t this basically our energy policy these days? How we “win the future”? If high energy prices were to damage President Barack Obama’s re-election prospects, it would be ironic, considering the left has been telling us to set aside our “dependency” — or, as our most recent Republican president put it, “addiction” — for a long time.

If Democrats had their way, after all, we would be enjoying the economic results of cap-and-trade policy these days — a program designed to increase the cost of energy by creating false demand in a fabricated market. As the theory goes, if you inflate the price of fossil fuels, the barbarians might finally start putting thought into how peat moss might be able to power a toaster.

The One himself suggested on the trail in 2008 that he’d like to see gas prices gradually increase and his Energy secretary has been mumbling about boosting prices to European levels for years. (Electricity prices would “skyrocket” too by Obama’s own admission if he had his way on cap-and-trade.) And yet, despite this being a golden opportunity for a “teachable moment” on why America needs to transition from fossil fuels to algae or whatever, some House Democrats are urging O to tap the strategic reserve to keep prices down and Obama’s whining about Republicans making political hay of it all. I wonder why. “$8 a gallon: Now more than ever” would make a nifty campaign slogan, but I suppose they don’t want to add any drags on the economy while it’s still recovering. Better to wait until it’s back to full blast and then start adding drags. Click the image to watch.