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Big Oil: Demand, Profits, Taxes

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OK, even though my head is hurting (figuratively, not literally) from repeatedly hitting it against the brick wall of word meaning redefiners and tax incentive deniers and those so blinded by ideology that they will not see/comprehend, I thought the following information/facts may be in order.

Yes, “Big Oil” profits are up, but before decrying profits consider these facts:

  • Miles driven: This source provides a graph of total miles driven by year from 1956 through 2010. We see that in 2009 and 2010 the miles driven actually fell. It takes a lot to make Americans drive less. But this graph clearly illustrates that miles driven has increased. Therefore the demand for gasoline has increased Does demand affect price? 

As this graph shows, as demand increases, with supply constant (see below), price increases, but not necessarily profit. (scroll down about 3/4th of the way, look for the “Shift in demand for beer” graph) I can’t help you if you are “economically challenged” (that’s PC for don’t know about economics)   But profits keep increasing despite a miles driven decrease. How is that possible? Well, when one considers that (1) profits from gasoline sales comprises less than 3% of total profits, (2) the price of oil has not dropped, and (3) demand worldwide is up, then profit increases are quite feasible.

  • Automobiles and Vehicle Miles per capita: The U.S. Deparftment of Energy (USDOE) provides both a graph and table of the number of automobiles per 1000 people from 1900 through 2008. As you can see the number of cars per 1000 people has grown, and continues to grow.  USDOE provides a graph of vehicle miles per capita, also growing. Because the number of automobiles and the vehicle miles is increasing, the demand for gasoline also increases. And as illustrated above, there is a relationship between demand and price/profit.
  • Population: Google Public Data provides a graph of the population growth from 1980 through 2011. There are more drivers on the road as population increases, thus increasing demand and price/profit.
  • “Big Oil” profit margin: In 2011, “Big Oil” profit margin of 6.2% ranked 114 of 215. That performance puts “Big Oil” in the middle of industries by profitability. In terms of dollar profit, the industry made record profits, but in terms of Return on Investment, the industry isn’t such a great investment. However, dollar signs get people’s attention much more than percent signs. People’s attention turns into votes, and that gets Congress’ attention. Congress wants to get re-elected, so they hold showboat inquires. This circus will go on until the people get educated. But that won’t happen since many public school graduates can’t even read their diplomas, but they feel good about themselves.
  • “Big Oil” taxes paid: Did you know that ExxonMobil, Chevron, and ConocoPhillips, the three largest domestic “Big Oil” companies paid, in 2010, over $42 billion in taxes. If we compare taxes paid by these companies in 2008 to individuals (the latest year available), the three companies paid $68.9 billion, more than the first 48 million individual tax payers.While ExxonMobil did not pay income tax in 2010, there are some factors to consider:
    1. ExxonMobil paid more than $15 billion in income tax payments to foreign countries in 2010. US tax codes allow companies to take deductions for taxes paid to foreign countries.
    2. Before all you lobby critics get vocal, consider this fact (and the next entry in this list): The US got money from ExxonMobil in several other ways, including sales taxes and duties.
    3. General Electric, whose president, Jeffery Immelt, is a big Obama donor, didn’t have to pay any income tax in 2009, because the GE financial services division lost money, giving GE a tax break it used to offset income from its other business lines. GE also made most of its profit overseas, where it can defer taxes indefinitely, and it can deduct taxes paid to foreign countries.
    4. Exxon said that they made a 7 cents profit in 2010 on each gallon of gasoline and other finished product sold here in the US. Meanwhile, the government (all levels) levied an average 48 cents per gallon tax, or 700% MORE than the producers.
  • Effects of Obama’s Policies on oil supply:
    • 120 million barrels annually lost because of the 2009-2012 Gulf of Mexico exploration/drilling moratorium
    • 830 thousand barrels per day lost because Obama blocked the Keystone XL pipeline
    • 11%  decrease in oil production on public lands in 2011
    • 23%  drilling approval rate in 2012
    • 73%  historical drilling approval rate
    • Obama’s inauguration Day, 2009: gasoline was $1.92 a gallon. Today, it is $3.72 a gallon.

But wait! When it comes to “Big Oil,” in 2009 Obama lent billions of dollars to Brazil’s state-owned oil company, Petrobras, to finance exploration of the huge offshore discovery in Brazil’s Tupi oil field. Brazil was supposed to supply the US with cheap oil. Obama orchestrated an up to $10 Billion dollar loan to Brazil for Brazilian oil. But Petrobras somehow went broke and to survive it sent the oil we financed to China. Petrobras got a $10 billion loan from China, then said it would give preference to Chinese companies in using the loan for the purchase of goods and services and also announced it will pay back part of the loan with proceeds from the sale of oil to China. And guess who invested in Petrobras before all of this occurred? None other than billionaire hedge fund manager/major Barack Obama fundraiser (wait for it…) George Soros. And in 2012 Obama killed the Keystone XL pipeline.

Are we connecting dots yet? No word yet about taxes Petrobras paid to the US or if the loan to Petrobras was repaid.

As a friend in marketing once said, “There are three factors that determine the price of any commodity – location, location, and location.” The misinformed public (because of the MSM), while filling ever-increasing numbers of cars, find it too easy to criticize “Big Oil” profits without considering (1) all the work it took to make gasoline available (the location part), and (2) government’s role in the ultimate price, a combination of taxes and policy.

But that’s just my opinion.

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  • Glenn Contrarian

    *GASP*! You mean Obama‘s destroying Big Oil???? OH NO!!!! Everybody wail and gnash your teeth! The sky is FAAAAALLLLiiiinnnngggg…!

    Um, Warren – I’m not sure if you’ve heard what conservatives want to do to ensure America’s energy independence. Sarah put it best: “Drill, baby, drill”. So why is it that America’s still IMporting billions of dollars of oil each and every month despite the fact that as of last year we are a net oil EXporter?

    Hm?

    I’ve asked that question several times, and not a single BC conservative has had the guts to answer exactly how the heck we get to energy independence – how the heck we stop sending our dollars to those who hate us and who have funded terrorist attacks against us – how do we get to energy independence when we’re ALREADY drilling enough TODAY to stop importing any oil at all, and we’d still have a little left over to export?

    How do we do that, Warren? None of the other BC conservatives have been able to answer that question – how about you?

    And what does this have to do with your article? You blame Obama for not agreeing to Keystone XL – but you’re forgetting that (1) most of the oil would have gone overseas anyway, and (2) the Republican governor of Nebraska didn’t like its route through his state.

    You gripe about taxes – but do you know that RIGHT NOW America’s corporations are paying less in taxes (as compared to profits) than at any time since 1972? Yep! Corporate taxes are LOWER under Obama than under Bush 43, Bush 41, Reagan, or Ford. Ah – but I forgot – Obama’s the Real Bad Man, huh?

    And your comment about the prices of the commodity – no, it’s NOT just “location, location, location”. It’s speculation, speculation, speculation, as those who are familiar with the oil industry will tell you. It’s SPECULATION that drives the oil prices…and that’s why Obama has very little to do with oil prices – that is, unless he bows to the wishes of Your Boys in the GOP who want us to bomb Iran, at which time the prices WOULD skyrocket.

    Your turn.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    And Warren –

    On the 7% profit margin – that’s after ALL expenses, all payroll, all construction and whatnot…and after the CEO and the bigwigs have already gotten paid, and after the lobbyists (and the politicians they bought) have gotten paid. I could be wrong, but I suspect you’ll find that 7% is what goes to the shareholders’ dividends – in addition to any increased value of the stocks.

    So I would suggest that you stop pitying the poor, poor little orphan oil executives – they’re doing just fine, thank you very much. In fact, since the speculators are driving up the prices again this year, you’ll see Big Oil making record profits once more…

    …and I can see it now – later this year, after Big Oil makes yet more record profits beyond the most homoerotic dreams of Midas, you and your fellow believers will leap to defend the poor little orphan oil execs against Big Bad Obama.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    And Warren –

    The “speculative premium” – the cost that oil speculation adds to each barrel of oil – currently results in an additional 56 cents per gallon.

    But y’all just keep on blaming Obama and that fed’ral guv’mint for causing such high prices, now, ’cause y’all know darn well y’all can’t be patriotic if ya don’t hate Obama like that there sheriff in Arizona does – you know, the one who wouldn’t spend taxpayer dollars to investigate child abuse claims, but just came out and said that his (taxpayer-funded) investigation proves that Obama’s birth certificate is a forgery and a fraud. Yep! Y’all just keep on being patriotic and responsible with the taxpayer dollars now, y’hear?

  • http://loftypremise.blogspot.com/ Tommy Mack

    As I have advised you before, blaming the administration for gasoline prices won’t fly because your assertions are only assertions. They are not sufficiently grounded. Glenn is right. Your conservative fellow travelers won’t back you on this because they cannot.

    In a pissing-up-the-rope contest, don’t hold the rope.

    Tommy

  • http://www.squidoo.com/lensmasters/IanMayfield Dr Dreadful

    Just dropping by without my middle name to acknowledge that Warren managed to resist using Obama’s this time. Or more likely he forgot. It’s tough being petty.

  • http://www.lunch.com/DrJosephSMaresca Dr Joseph S Maresca

    The earth shook in 18 states for 54 days along the San Madrid fault lines back in the time frame of 1812.

    What impact could major drilling and excavation for the Keystone project have geologically in this region? The data on recent testing needs to be made public so that the issues can be discussed openly.

  • Igor

    What impact, indeed. Ohio has reported flurries of 3.0-4.0 earthquakes accompanying fracking in that state. Switzerland quit all fracking because of significant temblors near Basel accompanying fracking.

    The XL pipeline is very bad. The oil will go overseas (even though Transcanada is asking the US taxpayer to support XL) and the USA will be left with the curse. There are only about 500-2000 temporary jobs involved (according to the independent Cornell report) although the Republican echo chamber keeps repeating unsupported claims of 10s and 100s of thousands of jobs!

    Don’t fall for XL: it’s a gyp for Americans.

    Today Bill Clinton came out for XL, but I suspect thats part of his Lewinski-penance to Hillary: her friend and former campaign manager is now CEO of Transcanada.

  • http://rwno.limewebs.com Warren Beatty

    Re: comment #1, Glenn, I never said Obama destroyd “Big Oil.” I just reported the results of his policies.

    Here is a direct response to your question about energy independence. See this source. Of course, achieving energy independence means extraction. Please refer to the last paragraph of the cited source.

    And I have never griped about taxes. I have just said in previous posts that there IS a difference between tax incentives and subsidsies.

    I agree with you that speculation has an effect on the price of oil. But have you ever heard of risk? If you buy a contract to deliver oil in the future (the definition of speculation), then you are putting money at risk because you have to deliver the oil. Can you not expect something for the risk taken? Perhaps you can write an article about the “appropriate” return on risk.

    Re: comment #2: “On the 7% profit margin – that’s after ALL expenses, all payroll, all construction and whatnot…and after the CEO and the bigwigs have already gotten paid, and after the lobbyists (and the politicians they bought) have gotten paid. I could be wrong, but I suspect you’ll find that 7% is what goes to the shareholders’ dividends – in addition to any increased value of the stocks.” Just like ALL other companies in ALL other industries.

    Re: comment #4, Tommy, perhaps a re-read is in order. I did NOT blame the administration for gasoline prices, as you stated in your comment. I simply presented facts, not, as you say, assertions. Of course you are free to prove that my facts (for which I provided sources) are assertions. I ask that your proof includes sources. BTW, thanks for your editing and improvements.

    Re: comment #7, Igor, you say, “Ohio has reported flurries of 3.0-4.0 earthquakes accompanying fracking in that state.” One problem: Ohio had earthquakes before fracking was even invented. Correlation does not necessarily mean causation. See this source.

    You state, “The XL pipeline is very bad. The oil will go overseas ….” Is that your opinion, or can you offer a source to back you up?

    ALL, I noticed not one of you addressed the Brazil/Obama/Soros issue, Brazil oil to China, or the Petrobras loan. I would really like to see information that y’all can uncover.

  • http://www.RosesSpanishBoots.com Christopher Rose

    A recent report I read estimated that the combination of increasing efficiency and falling costs meant that the USA could generate all of its power requirements via solar power in 20 years time.

    If true, it will change the debate about oil, to say nothing of the global balance of economic power substantially.

  • http://jetsgayheadlinenews-jet.blogspot.com/ Jet Gardner

    The reason they’re pushing for more domestic drilling is NOT so America will be less dependant on foreign oil, it’s because big oil can sell it to CHINA at a higher price than Americans are willing to pay for it.

    It’s the same with the bullshit natural gas ads we keep seeing about how much America has and how it will make us energy independant. Do you really think they’re going to keep it here when other countries will pay more?

    Oil prices and natural gas will not go down with more drilling and fracking, Big Oil’s profits will go up higher than they ever have been while the American tax payers are suckered into subsidizing their end of the costs in pipelines and drilling here all the while it’s shipped off shore.

    The oil always goes to the highest bidder.

    God bless the almighty dollar, China’s deep pockets and the amount of lies the GOP will tell you to fill their owner’s profit lines

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Warren –

    On “Obama destroyING Big Oil” – that’s fairly obvious sarcasm illustrating your perpetual fear-mongering about the black guy in the White House.

    On your attempt to answer my question on “drill-baby-drill” making America energy-independent, at least you tried – I’ll give you that – but you didn’t answer why it is that we’re still buying billions of dollars of OIL from people who hate us at the same time that we’re exporting OIL. The article you referenced was more about efficiency and natural gas than it was about oil – but my question is about OIL.

    The ANSWER, Warren, is the free market over which the president and the (free-market-owned) Congress have little power. The way the oil market is set up, almost all the oil drilled is essentially put into a worldwide common market, and corporations buy not so much from nations, but from that market. Yes, there will be restrictions by this or that nation (such as the West refusing to buy oil from Iran), but for the most part, the world’s oil goes into that big common pot.

    This is the free market at work…

    …and this is why “drill-baby-drill” will never – NEVER – keep us from paying billions of dollars of oil who hate us, because as long as most of the world’s oil goes into the common pot called the ‘free market’, and as long as corporations buy at the lowest price they can get (which is what they’ll ALWAYS do), Big Oil will keep buying oil from the Middle East and will keep selling it here stateside.

    NOW that you’re armed with all that information, care to take another shot at exactly how “drill-baby-drill” is going to make us independent of foreign oil? Here’s a clue – the way the world market is set up, true independence of foreign oil is IMPOSSIBLE short of North Korean government-mandated juche-style self-reliance measures.

    So…care to take another crack at my question? Given what you’ve just been told about oil and the free market, I’d really, really to see you try. Please do so.

    ================================

    But I wonder if you happened to read the whole article you referenced, particularly the parts about fracking and the need for environmental responsibility. You point out to Igor the correlation/causation fallacy…BUT you’re apparently not aware that the USGS has already stated that fracking IS causing the earthquakes:

    A boom in gas production using hydraulic fracturing or “fracking” of natural gas has played a role in decreasing US dependence on foreign oil and coal and helped cut energy prices, but evidence is mounting that the process may come at a price.

    “To the extent that our nation wants to become independent of meeting its energy needs in the coming years, the increased earthquakes are going to go along with that,” said Art McGarr, a geophysicist with the U.S. Geological Survey in Menlo Park, Calif. “The problems are only going to grow in the future.”

    State officials closed disposal wells around a brine-injection well after a magnitude 4.0 quake rumbled through the Youngstown, Ohio, on New Year’s Eve day. That was the 11th earthquake in 2011 in the region, which is not considered seismically active. Experts are also investigating a 5.6 magnitude earthquake east of Oklahoma City that has been linked to gas drilling there, McGarr said.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Oh, but silly me – the very fact that professional geologists stated that fracking is causing earthquakes means that fracking can’t be causing earthquakes!

    How do we know this?

    Simple! It’s the same reason that humans can’t be causing global warming – 98% of professional climatologists stated that humans are causing global warming – and that means that human’s can’t be causing global warming!

    What’s the connection? One might think that it’s because geologists and the climatologists have PhD’s – after all, if they have PhD’s, they must be elitist snobs who went to Obama-mandated liberal indoctrination mills

    …but that’s not it. The REAL reason should be quote obvious – the geologists said something that might cost Big Oil a few dollars, and THAT, sirs, is how we know that the geologists MUST be wrong.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    And one last thing, Warren –

    Here’s some fact-checking for you.

    Note that it slams not only the GOP candidates but also Obama. But hopefully you’ll read it – and learn to hold your own candidates to the same standard to which you hold those you don’t like.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    @10

    Spot on, Jet.

  • jamminsue

    Tommy #4 – love it! My personal favorite, is ‘don’t feed the trolls’

    Warren – remember when Oil futures hit $150 a barrel? the price today relates to FUTURES, not anything happening now.

    And as Glenn mentioned, I believe we do not have any fields big enough to supply a year of US demand for oil. I seem to remember something said that ANWAR would in total only supply a few months of demand for the entire country. So, as our domestic supply is not able to supply us for any long period of time, why bother?

    We need to focus on how to function without fossil fuels, not squabble over the remaing pockets of the stuff.

  • Clavos

    it’s because big oil can sell it to CHINA at a higher price than Americans are willing to pay for it.

    Bull. Oil is a fungible commodity, which means it sells for the same price worldwide.

    Also BHO has stated unequivocally that he’d like to see the price of fuel go to $6 to force conservation; to accomplish that, all that has to happen is for him to say to the Arabs and Africans, Mexicans and Brazilians that we’ll volunteer to pay more. But of course, he can’t do that; he would lose in 2012 for sure if he did.

    After the election? Expect gas to go to at least $6 if, as expected, he wins.

    But it’ll be OK because our health care will be “free,” so we’ll all be able to afford $6 gas.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    I don’t believe so, Clav. There are different price structures at work.

  • jamminsue
  • Glenn Contrarian

    Clavos –

    You know very well that short of starting wars, presidents have very little influence at all over the price of gas – so that just shows how empty your comment was…

    …especially since we’re already pumping more oil now than we have in at least a decade – and that begs the question, Clavos:

    How is it that we’re pumping more oil that we have in quite some time, and the miles we’re driving is still down from what it had been – meaning that supply is up and demand is down – but the prices are STILL going up. How is that, Clavos?

  • Clavos

    …presidents have very little influence at all over the price of gas – so that just shows how empty your comment was…

    One word, Glenn: TAXES. And that’s exactly how he intends to raise the price of gas.

    And, actually, Glenn you’re jumping to an unwarranted conclusion when you say demand is down, because we are driving far more gas guzzlers than we did years ago, so consumption is higher, not lower as MPG is worse, not better, even though total miles driven has declined slightly (1.4% in 2011, according to the Federal Highway Administration).

  • Zingzing

    I suppose $6 gas is a less crazy prediction than the tanks in the street Dave predicted back in 2008. progress! …ugh.

  • S.T.M

    Big deal. $6 a gallon gas. That’s about what we pay in Oz ($1.50 a litre, roughly). It seems like it’s been that for about the past 10 years, give or take 10 cents a litre up or down depending on what the price of oil is doing. I expect it will go up when our loony left government finally brings in its carbon tax later this year, which gives ‘em a year to cut the budget deficit (they won’t) before they get reduced to a small rump party at the next election.

    Anyway, be that as it may, I can safely report nearly everyone still has two cars and the country hasn’t ground to a halt. They pay a lot more than that in Europe for petrol, where governments tax the shit out of it. The price there is probably closer to $12 a gallon. In the UK that is certainly the case, although there dispensations for diesel which we don’t get here.

    Think yourselves lucky on your fuel price at the pump. We do here, and you guys pay even less.

    My tip: drive cars that use less fuel. My diesel costs about $35 a week to run, a pretty miserly figure even at $6 a gallon.

    My wife’s little four cylinder uses under half a tank a week, about $20 worth.

    Big-six SUVs and V8s are good, but they ain’t the answer to keeping fuel prices down on the laws of supply and demand.

  • Clavos

    Last year, while honeymooning in Tuscany, I paid the equivalent of $120 USD in Euro for 3/4 of a tank of diesel in a Volvo S60 — twice, so a total of 1 1/2 tanks cost $240 USD; that worked out to $10 a gallon.

    And I believe we”ll see $10 fuels here in the foreseeable future.

    The diesel for my boat (which is free of road tax, because it doesn’t use roads) is already $4 a gallon; a typical fillup takes 350-400 gallons in a total tankage of 500 gallons.

    Get ready, Americans; it’s coming.

  • http://brokebackmountaintribute.blogspot.com/ Jet Gardner

    D&L halted operations at the Youngstown Ohio well on Dec. 30 after an earthquake that occurred six days prior on Dec, 24 was found to be the shallowest yet, only 2,000 feet below the bottom of the well. The company stopped accepting water and began depressurizing the well to prepare for tests.

    That depressurization caused the biggest quake yet the very next day.

    The Ohio Department of Natural Resources has been compiling geological data including well pressure and injection volumes. ODNR spokesman Carlo LoParo said the department plans to release a preliminary report within the next few weeks addressing the seismic activity in the Youngstown area and presenting additional standards for wells statewide.

    Youngstown has only experienced one earthquake 2 weeks later and somehow is now quiet…

    Makes ya think don’t it?

    Youngstown earthquakes for 2011
    March 17, 6:42 a.m. — 2.1 magnitude (foreshock).

    March 17, 6:53 a.m. — 2.6 magnitude (mainshock).

    Aug. 22, 4 a.m. — 2.2 magnitude.

    Aug. 25, 3:44 p.m. — 2.4 magnitude.

    Sept. 2, 5:03 p.m. — 2.2 magnitude.

    Sept. 26, 9:06 p.m. — 2.6 magnitude.

    Sept. 29, 8:52 p.m. — 2.7 magnitude.

    Oct. 20, 6:41 p.m. — 2.3 magnitude.

    Nov. 25, 1:47 a.m. — 2.2 magnitude.

    Dec. 24, 1:24 a.m. — 2.7 magnitude.

    Dec. 31, 3:05 p.m. — 4.0 magnitude.

    Jan. 13, 5:22 p.m. — 2.1 magnitude.

    …but then again you know how earthquake prone Ohio is.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Clavos –

    Here you go again with your dire predictions based on nothing more than You Just Know It. Remember how back in 2008 conservatives were SO sure that Obama was going to tax everything out of sight? And now you, sir, along with all other American citizens have the lowest tax burdens that we’ve had since the early 1950’s. And corporate taxes are lower than they’ve been (in effective terms, not nominal) since 1972.

    Clavos, if taxes were the way to gauge how conservative a president is, then Obama’s the most conservative president since Herbert Hoover. You’ve got ZERO room to complain about Obama and taxes.

    Oh, and on cars, we did start ignoring gas mileage back in the late 1990’s and early 2000’s…but that’s not the case now.

    So…Clavos – until Obama actually does raise taxes, you’ve got no room to talk. That is, unless you consider it a tax increase to take away the billions in taxpayer subsidies that Big Oil gets every year.

  • Clavos

    Glenn, he has to raise the price of gas, and for once, I agree with him; until buying gas is really painful, Americans will not conserve, and alternative energy cannot compete.

    As you yourself have said, he has no control over what the energy industry chooses to charge, and they are unlikely to raise their prices to the point of demand suppression; ergo, he will raise fuel taxes, and he should, if he’s serious about his plans for alternative energy sources and energy conservation, because as long as fuel is cheap, and it is here, we won’t stop driving one or two persons to a vehicle.

    His stopping of Keystone and his opposition to domestic drilling and fracking are part and parcel of the same plan, despite his sanctimonious speechifying about the environment.

    $6 to $10 gas will do the trick; he knows that and has the means to make it happen.

    But not until after the election.

    And, anyone who’s serious about cleaning up the environment and alternative energy development should welcome $6+ fuel.

  • http://rwno.limewebs.com Warren Beatty

    Re: comment #11, Glenn, you say, “On “Obama destroyING Big Oil” – that’s fairly obvious sarcasm illustrating your perpetual fear-mongering about the black guy in the White House.” Assuming my comments are sarcastic, huh? Is that now your way of ignoring comments you don’t like?

    The reference I cited was about ENERGY since your reference in comment #1 was about attaining energy independence. Remember?

    Anyway, by YOUR definition the US will never attain energy independence. So let’s see what the word “independence” means (to most people): independence: the quality or state of being independent. So now we need to see what indepedent means (again, to most people): not subject to control by others, not requiring or relying on something else, not requiring or relying on others. So, if you are going to use the term “energy independence,” at least stay on subject and not bring in your definition of the free market.

    I have to include the phrase “to most people” since commenters here have a habit of ignoring word meanings.

    About the USGS article you cite: Did you bother to look at the title?

    Re: comment #24, Jet, you say, “…but then again you know how earthquake prone Ohio is.” You may, therefore, be interested in this article. As I have said before, “Correlation does not necessarily mean causation.”

    Have you ever heard of the New Madrid Fault? The cited source provides a USGS graphic that all of Ohio to be within its influence.

    BTW, Glenn, this same graphic shows where you currently live to be in the reddest zone, so take care.

    And I’m STILL waiting for someone, anyone, to provide information to refute the Obama/Brazil/Soros fiasco.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Clavos –

    I’m not sure I agree with you on the need for really high gas prices…but I’m not sure I disagree with you, either. There’s real merit to your argument on that point.

    My real disagreement with you is on your assumption that Obama’s going to jack up the gas prices, because your assumption is based on your own opinion. I don’t think he would even if he could, because if he did so, the political backlash would hurt the Democratic party significantly in the next midterm election.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Warren –

    Anyway, by YOUR definition the US will never attain energy independence

    You misunderstand me. IF we continue to depend so greatly on “drill-baby-drill”, and IF the international oil market continues in its current structure (as it certainly will), then NO, we will never attain energy independence.

    BUT if we strive towards fuel efficiency and do what is necessary to build our alternative-energy industry, then yes, we CAN become energy-independent.

    Problem is, Warren, your boys are so against spending the taxpayer dollars necessary to boost our energy efficiency (like upgrading our woefully-inefficient power grid) and boost our alternative-energy industry (like China is doing right now, spending billions in taxpayer subsidies so they can corner the world market in solar panels).

    You get what you pay for, Warren – and it’s like the old Midas commercial: “You can pay me now, or you can pay me later”. You can pay the taxes now for the upgrading and modernizing of our energy grid and industry as a whole…or you can pay a lot more later.

    And I’m not Down South right now – I’m in the Philippines. Next month I’ll be back in Washington state, and then later that month I’ll go back to Sunflower County for a couple weeks. Drop by and I’ll whip up a good BBQ for you – as much as I talk down the South, there’s not much better than a good Southern BBQ, and I think you’ll agree with me on that point.

    And you’d like my family there, too – they’re as conservative as you are. Me, I’m the political black sheep of the family (AFAIK the only liberal), and some of them tell each other, “hey, he’s a lib’rul, so be careful what you say around him!” At least I was able to get my brother turned on to Boston Lager….

  • http://brokebackmountaintribute.blogspot.com/ Jet Gardner

    The point is so easy to see kids! The price of oil depends on it’s low supply. The higher the price of oil, the higher the oil companiy’s profits.

    Who drills for oil?
    The oil companies want us to, so they don’t have to touch their multi-billion profit margins.

    The only way to gain energy independence is to tap all of that “abundant” oil we supposedly have in shale and on our pristine coasts…

    …and remove ourself from the world oil market-buy and refine ONLY our own oil-setting our own prices on ONLY our own oil-of which the GOP claims we have an ample supply of, and thumb our noses at the arabs.

    Since we have so much oil… we should be bartering down our debt with China with it; shouldn’t we?