Friday, June 17, 2022

Taking Advantage

By contrast, this tweeter demonstrates that annual production by USA oil companies has been higher under President Biden than under the previous five Presidents. That doesn't prove that the incumbent has done a better job at encouraging oil production than the others, nor that he has done a particularly good job.

However, it does prove that he is not the problem. Let us recall that in April of 2020, a mere five months before he left (kicking and screaming) the presidency

As the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies came to an agreement on a record cut in oil production, U.S. President Donald Trump may have struck his “biggest and most complex deal,” according to oil expert Dan Yergin.

“What was so interesting — among many, very interesting things in this unprecedented event — was the turnaround, the pivot by Donald Trump,” Yergin, who is vice chairman at IHS Markit, told CNBC’s “Street Signs” on Monday.

Just a few weeks ago, Trump had said the early-March plunge in oil prices were “good for the consumer” as it meant lower gasoline prices. That drop in crude prices had been triggered by an oil price war between Saudi Arabia and Russia after Moscow rejected a proposal by OPEC to cut 1.5 million barrels of production per day.

The sharp decline in oil prices spurred giant capex and job cuts across the U.S. shale industry, which has some of the highest production costs in the world.

But Yergin said: ”(Trump) came to see this as a national security issue, also an employment issue, and a very important factor in the U.S. economy … and he just jumped in.”

Let's hope this Yergin character, a member of the National Petroleum Council who claims less oil production is good for national security, never gets close enough to sniff a governmental policymaking position. Expansion of renewable energy is good for national security. Cutting oil production internationally raises costs to the consumer and most assuredly does not promote national security.

But Jordan and company are little interested in reducing the price of fuel and other forms of energy. If they were, they wouldn't have been unanimous in opposing (as did four Democrats) in the House of Representatives the Consumer Fuel Price Gouging Prevention Act, which "would grant the president authority to issue emergency energy proclamations and make it illegal to increase gas and energy prices in excessive and exploitative ways. It would also expand the Federal Trade Commission's power to investigate and address possible price gouging by oil and gas companies." (It's expected to die in the Senate.)

With gas in short supply, less can be sold and yet, miraculously, oil companies are reaping record profits. There is nothing like taking advantage of an international crisis to gouge the public. So it must be Biden's fault.

Rumor has it that there will be elections throughout the country in November. Most Republicans are standing in firm, many in enthusiastic, support, of a fellow who as President tried to get the Vice President killed and to prevent the peaceful transfer of power. It shouldn't be surprising that, with high gas prices imperiling a Democrat majority in Congress, they would be standing with Big Oil and against the American public.


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