Use Less Oil vs. Find More Oil (Part I)

One anonymous commenter belittles those concerned about the Alaskan wilderness and argues that the way to bring prices down is to drill in ANWR. That might be a short term solution, but eventually that's going to run out, too. The fundamental problem -- that oil is a finite resource -- remains.

Debater Jaxas harkens back to an old Midas muffler commercial: "You can pay me now, or you can pay me later." America characteristically decided "to defer payment until later," Jaxas writes. "Well, now it is later."

If your refrigerator was losing more and more of its cooling abilities with each passing day, you wouldn't wait until you were driven from your house by the stench of rotted food, would you? You'd get it fixed -- assuming you had the money to do so, of course.

In the United States, we have tremendous financial resources to dedicate to finding alternatives for powering our cars, homes and just about everything else, yet it seems we've concentrated on subsidizing the oil industry to keep gas costs down. But the laws of supply and demand don't change; as supply dwindles, prices will inevitably rise.

Looking to save some of that money? It's a matter of conservation, says Debater Lisa DiFrancisco. And she has a challenge for you.

More on the battle between the drillers and the conservationists coming up ....

By Emily Messner |  April 27, 2006; 4:35 PM ET  | Category:  Misc.
Previous: The Ethanol-Powered Bandwagon | Next: Use Less Oil vs. Find More Oil (Part II)

Comments

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Emily, please state how oil, being a finite resource, has caused the price of gas to go up 50% in one year? If you did any research you would know its not the lack of oil resources, its not the demand of China, American SUVs or lack of drilling. Its caused solely by Bush's threats to Iran and intervention in Iraq that have driven up the speculative price of oil and thus gasoline. Bush could drop oil prices by stating that he has no intent on attacking Iran. He could begin withdrawls of US troops from Iraq which are long over due. The price of oil and thus gas has little to do with what is in your article.

Posted by: Sully | April 27, 2006 08:05 PM

It truly amazes me that no one is looking to get the futures traders in front of a congressional committee about their impact on "has caused the price of gas to go up 50% in one year?" as Sully asked.

Also, it would be great to see how past presidents, of both parties, have dealt with futures price spikes. There is a history and it could help here. But the immediate impact on prices would best be achieved, I believe, by getting the futures traders in front of congress for an indepth examination of their ability to make millions in seconds by driving our prices up by cents a day in hyper fast electronic auction. That is where the killing is being made.

Posted by: Pat | April 27, 2006 08:28 PM

Pat, I wouldn't blame the speculatiors any more than you would blame yourself for selling a stock you thought was about to tank or buying one you thought was about to rise. Its what the speculators are reacting to, what is making them think oil may be scarce, and thus more valuable, in the future. Bush implies he will bomb Iran and Iran wants to wipe Isreal off the face of the earth. We occupy Iraq with no end in sight and OBL and his henchmen make threatening tapes. That is what makes the speculators think oil may be scarce in the future and you cannot blame them.

We have little power over those in Iran thumping their chests but we can ask why Bush is thumping his chest, why he failed miserably in Iraq and why he left OBL and his henchmen alive to continue to threaten us. Its Bush's inability to apply diplomacy, his inability to win in Iraq, his inability to find OBL et. al. and his inability to recognize his inabilities. I don't put the republican congress too far behind the blame.

Posted by: Sully | April 27, 2006 08:47 PM

Looking for "cause" don't forget the mess in Nigeria, the risk of the Saudi's trying to play both sides of the fence, and Russia aligning with Iran. All add risk to the steady flow of oil. The oil majors aren't getting rich on retail operations, they are getting rich on what they pull out of the ground at such high prices. I didn't see the government sending them subsidies when oil fell to $9 a barrel in the late 90's, when they were losing their butts drilling for oil in most areas of the world.

Posted by: Dave | April 28, 2006 02:11 AM

If the President of america has not been from Texas, if halliburton is not supporting cheney by now the oil prices would have plummetted.Hiegher oil prices are in the interest of ruling clique of america.It will fall just before the next newhampshire primary.

Posted by: captainjohann | April 28, 2006 09:13 AM

Dave wrote:
"The oil majors aren't getting rich on retail operations, they are getting rich on what they pull out of the ground at such high prices"

Which explains why Bill Frist was on TV advocating drilling in ANWR even though it would supply a small fraction to what we already pump. That oil under ANWR is now worth $70/barrel and its not surprising that the oil industry is pushing hard to get every drop they can out of the ground. If Frist really wanted to lower gas prices he would be talking about stabilizing the uncertainty, and thus risks, in oil producing nation's future ability to supply oil. He would be talking about how to stabilize the oil nations and would not have made this recent statement:
'We need to use diplomatic sanctions. If that doesn't work, economic sanctions, and if that doesn't work, the potential for military use has to be on the table.'
Bush has also stated publically:
'...all options, including the use of force, are "on the table" to prevent Iran from developing nuclear weapons.'
That is why gas is $3/gallon, not because they are thinking it, but because they are saying it, to collegues, to reporters and to the world. You may agree or disagree that war with Iran may be necessary, but you need to understand that the price of gas has risen SOLELY on the risk of oil supply disruption if war happens and not due to SUVs, lack of drilling or refining capacity. If the risks went away tomorrow, gas would be $1.50/gallon within months and we'd be talking about something else.

Posted by: Sully | April 28, 2006 09:22 AM

When are you going to wake up and smell the coffee? The price of oil is being set artifically high by the multi-national oil companies. I stated in one of my previous posts that the supply of crude (sitting in storage tanks) is at an all time high!!! The oil producers are paid a contractual price to deliver a certain number of barrels per day to be loaded and shipped. What company do you know that operates without a contract to supply a service or goods without a contract????? I'll bet not too many. It is the major oil buyers and speculators that run the price up. They make a percentage of each barrel that they purchase for delivery. Most of the oil buyers work for a holding companies owned by one of the 5 major oil companies.

Now we go back to why it fluctuates so much. Every time the IDIOT in the White House or one of his flunkies rattles their mouth off about let's say nuking Iran for enriching Urainium, and since Iran happens to be the fourth largest producer of light, sweet crude in the world, they figure since he's already started one meaningless war that what's to stop him from another? Also since the oil producers aren't producing an enormous amount over the worlds demand, then an intruption in the supply from any country will cause a supply shortage the speculators and buyers raise the price to cut out some of the buyers by out pricing their ability to purchase.

Why do you think Cheney had the "Oil / Energy" policy meetings in private with the CEO's of the major oil corporations? Why do you think that when the Congress held hearings right after Katrina, No tough questions were asked of the oil company CEO's? There was once or twice during those hearings when a member of congress hadn't received a substantial donation check for his re-election of PAC, the 2 tough question that were asked were stepped on by the chairman of the hearings and the CEO never had to answer the question.

People need to do some serious research into the reasons things happen the way they do. Unless you actually work in an industry for a long period of time and know the ins & outs of that industry, most people in this country rely on what is told to them either by the news media, an elected official, or someone who professes to be an expert and is usually paid by the industry that he claims to be an expert in, therefore you are getting their spin on the subject and not the real truth. It is true that oil is a finite resource and the world does need to develop additional supplies of energy, but we are NOT running out of oil in the next 20 years or even the next 50.

Posted by: Lab Rat | April 28, 2006 09:47 AM

That was a nice little piece on energy conservation that Emily refered to but it has little impact on the price of oil. After the oil embargo of the 70's, most electricity is no longer produced using oil.

Posted by: | April 28, 2006 10:01 AM

So when can we start drilling in ANWR? How about right now?

Posted by: Will | April 28, 2006 10:04 AM


As LabRat noted, there is no oil shortage, at least no shortage if pumping were not constrained. The problem is OPEC (and any oil country) can reduce the output and thus increase prices. It can also do the opposite, increase output to reduce prices. When uncertainty comes into play, as it has with the US-Iran war talk and Nigeria's problems, other producers could pledge to increase output if shortages from Iran develop. I don't hear any such pledges nor hear our government asking for them. Lets face it, the Bush administration is talking about ethanol instead of facing this stituation. Why is he looking the other way? Why is he not leading a worldwide mission to get guarantees of oil supply increases if Iran's oil is halted? This would be teriffic leverage against Iran. It would reduce the uncertainty and thus risk and prices would drop. Maybe its too complicated for the former cheerleader.

Posted by: Sully | April 28, 2006 10:08 AM

In today's paper you can read about how the Fiscally Responsible Party is scrambling to offer a $100 rebate to "most taxpayers" for gasoline. Not to be outdone, the Irrelevant Party is calling the FRP insincere because they have dibs on government spending.

We must hate our children.

Posted by: Will | April 28, 2006 10:36 AM

Does anybody believe in supply and demand? The reason futures traders are looking at what we think are unreasonably high prices for oil is because we are at the point of peak oil and there are two countries, China and India, who are each four times bigger than the U.S. in poopulation and they are both scouring the world for resources to make their countries equal to or greater than the U.S., which currently consumes 24% of the world's oil. If everyone in either country drives a car, as we do here in the U.S., they will need four times the amount of oil that we consume. So demand is going to outstrip supply in the very near future and that will drive the price of oil into the stratosphere.

Posted by: Grant | April 28, 2006 10:51 AM

Sully. You make no sense. You seem to think a President is omnipontent. You babble about pledges and such as if the President of the United States can hold a meeting with someone and determine a "fair" oil price. Have you ever heard of markets?

Posted by: Jon M | April 28, 2006 11:20 AM

Ahhh...come on. Do you SERIOUSLY think that the same Congress that trades votes for hookers wants to effect the profits of big oil?

If you want to get to the root cause of our problems, our addiction to the black crack being one, then we need only look at ourselves. WE elected those that reflect our own selfishness and then act surprised when the act like selfish little cretins.

Get over it, we are reaping what we have sewn. Karma is a right nasty beeeotch.

Posted by: Mike | April 28, 2006 11:21 AM

The solution is obvious...we must immediately surrender in Iraq. Once Chimpy AbuMcGraib McHitlerBu$hs' war for oil is stopped and the evil neocons brought to heel will everything once again become rosy...with Iranians and jews dancing together in the streets, dhimmicrats voted into office...

Posted by: | April 28, 2006 11:28 AM

Will someone PLEASE post just HOW LONG it would take to get oil flowing from ANWR and just HOW LITTLE of a percentage of what we use it would supply? Please.

Again, if you are addicted to a drug and that addiction is starting to cause problems, finding new drug dealers will NOT help you.

Say it with me...GET OFF THE BLACK CRACK AMERICA!

Posted by: AfghanVet | April 28, 2006 11:30 AM

I find myself marvelling in astonishment at those who try to spin this crisis in the same oversimplified way they spin other issues of moment.

The right wing spinners assure us that this is purely a matter for the market to sort out--that the forces of supply and demand will ultimately force us into an equilibrium. That may be all well and true, but how does that play with a struggling middle class family that is already making difficult choices between the burgeouning costs of housing, education and health care? How does it ring to an elderly couple on fix incomes who may have to drive as far as 50 miles to a clinic or hospital that will accept Medicare or the particular health insurance that they have?

Reliance on hoary economic theories concerning supply and demand will ring hollow in the face of the economic realities that are facing working and retired Americans today. We need specific mixes of solutions to a very complex problem that has many intricate components.

Nor do I spare the spinners on the left who pander to the NIMBY philosophy that most Americans adopt. We are not going to solve this problem with such selfish attitudes. We need a mix of solutions that stick in the craw of ideologues on both sides of the spectrum. We are all going to have to shed some of our most dearly held shibboleths if we are going to even begin to make a dent on this problem.

At present, I see no willingness on the left nor the right to come to a middle ground between the forces of supply and demand. I see no willingness on the right to recognize that government intervention into the process is necessary; Nor do I see any willingness on the left to accept the reality that we are going to have to drill in place that are presently off limits and build refineries in someone's back yard.

We are going to have to invest in alternate sources of energy and mass transportation--something this do-nothing Congress seems incapable of recognizing. And, our people are going to have to accept a certain amount of restrictions on where and when they can drive. Our cities have become clogged to the point of gridlock and our highways are reaching a point where it is not feasible to build new ones.

And finally, we need what has sorely been lacking in this country. We need to get back to thinking imaginatively and innovatively. We can't do that by sticking with all of these hidebound ideologies of the past that compress our thinking into narrow parameters that brook no solutions that don't fit the blinkered paradigms of those ideologies.

There is no present shortage of energy supplies in this world. But there is a dearth of imagination owing to the restrictive mindset imposed upon us by ideologues and faith based true believers wh fear the future.

Posted by: Jaxas | April 28, 2006 11:34 AM

The beginning of wisdom in management is to recognize that people don't do what they're told to do, they do what they are paid to do.

Rewarding conservation is the best and most equitable way to bend the fuel-consumption curve down.

Posted by: On the plantation | April 28, 2006 11:37 AM

So...what you're saying is that we should get Environmentalists to get some hookers on the payroll.

A natural solution too!

Posted by: Mike | April 28, 2006 11:40 AM

The dollar has really gotten hammered in foreign-exchange markets today, and has trended negatively in the past few weeks. This could lead to oil prices gapping up again.

Posted by: On the plantation | April 28, 2006 11:47 AM

Advice: Get used to it. This is the tip of the proverbial iceberg. We have mortgaged our future via this administration and natural resources is just ONE of the many things we allowed this administration to deal to the devil in the name of un restrained free markets, quarterly profit statements and reckless wars.

Linear systems that are "pushed" into non-linear states by perturbations from outside forces will wreak havoc before we can muster the will, and most likely the forces, necessary to shock it back into linear functionality.

W et al gambled that they could make their theories work and they chose poorly. We are now going to reap the results of the crashing of the house of cards. ENRON is a good metaphor actually.

As a native of DC it will almost be worth standing among the smoldering ruins to watch W and all of the smarmy, deluded, self-serving lackies leaving and going back to whatever rock they crawled out of.

We can ALL sit here and pontificate about the SOLUTIONS to our problems, but we will first have to get rid of the source of our problems first and it looks like we have about 2.5 years to go for that.

Chinese curse: "May you live in interesting times."

Enjoy the ride.

Posted by: Mike | April 28, 2006 11:57 AM

I hate to say this, but I think that sometime in the not too distant future there will be one of two things happen. One will either be some kind of civil disobedience or maybe even an uprising in protest of the way things are headed in this country, or the other is the military will unleash some kind of population mind control experiment. In fact I really am suprised that there hasn't been some kind of uprising by the population masses against the way our government has been taking away our freedoms.

I realize the media hasn't been vigilient in letting the American people know what our elected representitives have been pulling, by hiding these erosions of our freedoms by hiding them in amendments on Bills passed in congress such as the spending for the troops in Iraq. How many people know that every prescription that their doctor writes or is filled in a licensed pharmacy is reported to the DEA? How many know that there is a movement to have the DEA let in on the panel that authoririzes new medicines on the market for prescription sales. That the government is requesting to be allowed access to all our personal information that is stored by these information storage companies in the pretext of national security.

When the "Patriot Act" was passed there was not much said about the potential for abuse by the government, and what little was said was immediately blasted by the Republicans as the people saying this were unpatriotic. When it came time for renewal we only were told that there were minor abuses of our freedoms by the FBI, it was requested by some members of congress to find out exactly how many times the provisions allowed by the "Patriot Act" were used to gain information on individuals vs the amount of usefull information obtained and used in making an arrest of a terrorist. How many letters were used to obtain personal information on peoples bank accounts, library accounts, etc. How many people have been investigated because of "Data Mining" activities from the monitoring of our domestic phone calls, internet searches, or e-mail? We recently found out that the government had been monitoring so-called international telephone calls from outside the U.S. to legal residents of the U.S. since shortly after 9/11 without court oversite. Even conservitive legal authorities have said that this was illegal.
Given that most Americans are of at least average intelligence. Even if they are not overly inquisitive, with all the different people who have brought ever so may things out in the open about the way this administration has twisted evidence to fit what they wanted to do, worded their speeches to inply something that they knew was not the truth if not outright lied in them. Any time someone disagreed, or dissented with their spin they put on things, they either disgraced them, said they were lying, or said that they were not patriotic, or released some story to take the hounds in another direction in hopes what they were trying to bring out into the open they would forget about it, that most Americans would wake up to the fact that these people are a bunch of crooked, lying, manipulators, that needed to be brought up on charges, much less still be allowed to drive this country further into the depths of no return. That the Republican run Congress is so crooked that since they have come back from break that "Lobbying Reform" is not important because their constituents didn't bring it up. This way they can continue with business as usual receiving undisclosed cash & checks for their re-election or thier personal Political Action Commitees, or their favorite charity (themselves or their family members). Americans would have never put up with this much corruption form their rulers before. (Anyone remember the "Boston Tea Party?) Most Americans now act like a bunch of sheep on the way to the slaughter house. Whoops I guess I have already figured it out. The government has all ready ordered the military to use the mind control drug / device on its people. I had better find a good place to hide before they trace my identity back to this computer.

Posted by: Finally figured out what's gone on | April 28, 2006 12:01 PM

I think your tin foil hat will help keep out the military-industrial-complex mind control rays.

Of course, its only being sold by Halliburton.

Posted by: D. | April 28, 2006 12:16 PM

Jaxas,

Finally someone who actually gets the real picture as to what is going on with this. The real problem is not that there is not enough supply, but that greed and an unwillingness to find common ground is what is causing this so-called energy crisis. Our politicians are easily bought, just give them a big enough campaign contribution and you can get anything you want. You want oil at $90.00 a barrel, sure thing, I'll start a war with a major oil producing country, at the same time making sure I don't send in enough troops to handle the problems. Then I'll threaten the 4th largerst supplier with a nuclear attack, and while I'm at it I'll keep sending weapons to both waring factions in a couple of oil producing nations in Africa. that should de-stabilize the market enough to have the speculators bid the price up. While I'm at it I'll make sure that the major automobile makers don't raise the MPG in their new vehicles, and I'll propose a solution that we continue to subsidize and that in no way could begin to take the place of our beloved oil (ethanol) While I'm at it I might as well continue to destroy what is left of this planet, I ease air quality standards so we can continue pumping greenhouse gasses into the atmosphere and finish melting the polar ice caps, maybe I can cause the next Ice Age by shutting down the ocean deep water convayor belt.

Posted by: Lab Rat | April 28, 2006 12:21 PM

Why is 2.50 cents a tank "fairer" than 3.00 a tank? Because it's cheaper?

Maybe Americans will just have to take the bus?

What in the world do any of you think American Citizens are *not* entitled to?

Posted by: Will | April 28, 2006 12:23 PM

Jon M wrote:
"Sully. You make no sense. You seem to think a President is omnipontent. You babble about pledges and such as if the President of the United States can hold a meeting with someone and determine a "fair" oil price. Have you ever heard of markets?"

Well I think this president is totally un-potent. But a real president would know that anything he/she says and does can influence speculators. By rattling the spear at Iran oil prices have shot up on the speculation of war. Its happened before. Nothing has changed in the past year except the prospect of war in the Persian Gulf. Bush et. al. are making more noise and the price of oil keeps going up. That's what markets do. If you don't believe the prospect of war affects oil see this page:
http://zfacts.com/p/35.html
So what can a real president do? He/She can begin softening the tone. He can talk with other oil producing nations to secure supply contracts if war breaks out, or a promise of increased production. A president is not omni-potent, but there is a lot this government can do to reduce the fear and help stabilize oil prices. This president could care less.

Posted by: Sully | April 28, 2006 12:30 PM

I just did a post on this myself. According to the US Geological Survey (http://pubs.usgs.gov/fs/fs-0028-01/fs-0028-01.htm)

The median estimate of oil in federally owned lands in ANWAR is 7.7 billion barrels of oil. That's only about 4 months of US consumption. But even that is not an accurate projection of how much oil we can use, just how much oil is there. There are limitations on what we can actually physically withdraw from the deposits and there is also a point well before you get close to using all of the oil where extraction becomes a ridiculous proposition from an economic standpoint. When one factors in the technological and economic restriction extracting oil, the US Geologic Survey indicates that there is less than a 5% chance that there is eve 7.7 billion barrels of extractable oil in ANWAR. I find it difficult to believe that an oil market full of very savvy people is going to be conned into buying at low prices based on an extra four months of supply.

And finally, I think we need to face the facts that changing your automobile consumption is not going to solve the problem. The problem is really big, literally industrial sized. As long as we have industry, heat, plastics, and airline travel, your Prius is not making a dent in the oil problem. It might make a dent in your gasoline bills, so good for you for owning one. But I fear when we talk about automobile use we are really not seeing the whole problem.

Posted by: Steven | April 28, 2006 12:37 PM

Right on the button as ever, Jaxas.

"You are perfectly representative of what I call "Drastic Pussyism" in the United States whereas any decision that "hurts" a particular group of people is prima facie wrong. The logical result of this is that Politicians only make decisions that have 0 political consequences. ..." wrutes clearly deluded Will.

And you of "Drastic Cretinism", Will. You, haven't really thought it through, have you? In fact, politicians do make decisions ( or rather do what they are told) with greater than 0 political, economic & social consequences. The status quo, for example, is a result of a multude of decisions.

The unfortunate part, it's usually the general populace who face the said, or should I say 'sad', consequences and pay the price, which is clearly the case in this crisis.

Let me ask you this, Will: Is there anything one can say that would make you reconsider your view of the matter?

Posted by: Emilio | April 28, 2006 12:44 PM

Dearest Jaxas,

I find your empathy truly touching. However, the "I feel your pain" speeches are generally conducted by the pols. Your conciliatory tone sounds genuine and, I am sure, is heartfelt. However, you spoke in oratorical plattitudes and said nothing.

We ARE investing in both alternative energy sources and mass transit. Plus, we have alternative sources (read: nuke power). Americans just aren't real fond of them. Maybe they will become more so with $3.00 gas.

Your elderly couple that has to drive fifty miles to get their healthcare (nice touch by the way) can, in fact, take a bus almost ANYWHERE in this country.

I find you notion of restrictions on "where and when we can drive," asinine. I can only assume you suggest this because you believe it will help us conserve oil. High prices of gas will succeed in curbing consumption more than any driving curfew (which is also a political dead-end) High prices will also effectively ease supply shortages, when closed wells that were not previously yielding profits will be reopened at $75/barrel prices.

Posted by: Jon M | April 28, 2006 12:44 PM

An early post by Sully claims that the price of oil and gas has little to do with supply and demand. That is patently wrong.

You now have China as a major player in the oil buying market and that's only going to get worse as their nation continues to industrialize.

ANWR is a really poor choice to go after when you consider the trade of the permanent damage there vs. the oil produced. We do need to find alternative sources of the energy needed to power our vehicles and pronto.

That said, a national speed limit of 60 mph should be instituted yesterday and the fines for violations should be stiff - like $250 for a first offense. The price will probably not come down much, but it should come down. At least we will take longer to use what we have as crude oil is a finite resource... they ain't makin' any more dinosaurs, people.

These would be hard choice to lazy, fat butt Americans who want their dessert right now... not later. I'm afraid if the government doesn't start exhibiting some foresight in their energy policies, we're in for a lot worse situation that just global warming.

Posted by: MT_Guy | April 28, 2006 12:45 PM

Dearest Jaxas,

I find your empathy truly touching. However, the "I feel your pain" speeches are generally conducted by the pols. Your conciliatory tone sounds genuine and, I am sure, is heartfelt. However, you spoke in oratorical plattitudes and said nothing.

We ARE investing in both alternative energy sources and mass transit. Plus, we have alternative sources (read: nuke power). Americans just aren't real fond of them. Maybe they will become more so with $3.00 gas.

Your elderly couple that has to drive fifty miles to get their healthcare (nice touch by the way) can, in fact, take a bus almost ANYWHERE in this country.

I find you notion of restrictions on "where and when we can drive," asinine. I can only assume you suggest this because you believe it will help us conserve oil. High prices of gas will succeed in curbing consumption more than any driving curfew (which is also a political dead-end) High prices will also effectively ease supply shortages, when closed wells that were not previously yielding profits will be reopened at $75/barrel prices.

Posted by: Jon M | April 28, 2006 12:46 PM

Sully-

A few points.

What particular instances of hard rhetoric are you referring to? Perhaps if you had a few examples we could single out which particular words, or letters if you prefer, are responsible for high gasoline prices.

Why would the President need or be able to "secure supply contracts if war breaks out"? We do not import any oil from Iran. Do you think Saudi Arabia, Canada, Mexico, Algeria, Ecuador, and Venezuela will stop selling us oil if we go to war with Iran?

What would the President offer in return for "a promise of increased production" from OPEC nations? Why would they promise to increase production when they make money by limiting supply? How do you propose to fund such a treaty?

Posted by: Will | April 28, 2006 12:48 PM

Steven wrote:
"there is less than a 5% chance that there is eve 7.7 billion barrels of extractable oil in ANWAR. I find it difficult to believe that an oil market full of very savvy people is going to be conned into buying at low prices based on an extra four months of supply."

No but an oil company sees $70/barrel or about $500 billion in ANWR. That is the drive, not increasing our independence from foreign oil significantly. The question is not whether the oil marketeers will buy the drilling argument, its whether the American people will.

Posted by: Sully | April 28, 2006 12:50 PM

Jon M pretty much sums up how I feel. Excellent post.

Posted by: Will | April 28, 2006 12:53 PM

MT_guy wrote:
"An early post by Sully claims that the price of oil and gas has little to do with supply and demand. That is patently wrong."

My earlier post stated that supply/demand has nothing to do with a 50% increase in the price of gas on one year. Sure China/India/etc will affect the cost of oil in the market. But even at their breakneck speed of development they have a way to go to get oil up to 50% higher than it was a year ago.

If you take your logic further we should be worried about oil shortages. Where are they? Anyone talking about them in reality (not speculation)? Are the oil producers pumping at 100% capacity saying 'sorry, that's all we can pump'? No. Oil costs 50% more today because of the threat to oil supplies if war comes to Iran. Chine/India have very little to do with it.

Posted by: Sully | April 28, 2006 12:57 PM

Will and Jon M,
High gas prices will have the effect of reducing consumption of gasoline as you hope, but it will not be a lot, and the repercussions of a recession and inflation will not be at all good for America. Be careful what you wish for.

Posted by: Sully | April 28, 2006 01:00 PM

Emilio-

My cretenism is unforgivable. I am, afterall, a cretin.

"Will. You, haven't really thought it through, have you? In fact, politicians do make decisions ( or rather do what they are told) with greater than 0 political, economic & social consequences. The status quo, for example, is a result of a multude of decisions."

In case you weren't taking note, a multitude of BAD decisions. Had our fathers and mothers made better fiscal decisions we would have 200 billion a year on hand to spend however we please. Instead, we lose 200 billion (and growing!) in interests payments on the debt. By spending like mad, or subsidizing America's collective poor decision making, we will be forcing higher payments on our children.

"The unfortunate part, it's usually the general populace who face the said, or should I say 'sad', consequences and pay the price, which is clearly the case in this crisis."

What "crisis"?

The truth is the "sad" consequences the general populace has to face are the result of the "sad" decisions that general populace has made. We've funded economic growth by essentially curtailing government revenue all the while spending more voraciously than ever. There isn't even an electorate to blame anymore since, if you're a Republican you've managed to elect the party that has undermined our revenue generating ability and, if you're a Democrat, you haven't exactly been, uhm, mindful of overeager spending.

So yea, the chickens have come home to roost. The quality of life that Americans have been inflating by overspending and undertaxing is --news flash-- unsustainable. One form of that is higher gasoline prices. If we were *merely* running 100 billion dollars in deficit annually maybe we could fund this with overeager spending (to prolong the problem a decade, perhaps, because there is no dramatic Jaxasesque imagery to describe future people). But at 500 billion dollar annual deficits there is no spending solution. There is no government "relief". There is nothing we can do that does not excacerbate the problem further.

So Americans can suffer in silence, for all I care. It's our fault. Get a bus ticket.

"Let me ask you this, Will: Is there anything one can say that would make you reconsider your view of the matter?"

You could start by pretending to have even the slightest bit of seriousness about the issues that face us as a nation. Recognize that you can't buy your way out of every hole you dig.

Posted by: Will | April 28, 2006 01:05 PM

Sully-

This is absurd. I spend less on gasoline now than I did in 1998 and I still spend too much because I bypass public transporation all together.

Conservation is a matter of will and determination, two things that are drastically increased by financial burden.

Posted by: Will | April 28, 2006 01:13 PM

Jon M,

I agree, Americans "aren't real fond of" public transportation. The gas price may well make many reconsider, no doubt.

However, your assertion that anyone can
"take a bus almost ANYWHERE in this country" is either a delusion or deliberate lie. You don't get out much do you?

This country DOES need real MASS transit, like in Europe. At least in the suburbia. I don't buy that BS about the difference in distances - they are comparable.

Does anyone ever wondered what ever happened to the American railroads?

Posted by: Emilio | April 28, 2006 01:21 PM

"You seem to think a President is omnipontent. You babble about pledges and such as if the President of the United States can hold a meeting with someone and determine a "fair" oil price. Have you ever heard of markets?"

Lets talk about markets. What would the effect have been on markets if the President of the US had stood up on September 12, 2001 and said:
"The greatest threat to the security of our nation is our dependence on foreign oil. I call on the American auto industry build a fleet of hybrid cars as good as those made in Japan. I call on Americans to buy the most fuel efficient car they can afford, and I'm restructuring my tax cuts as rewards to make these cars affordable to as many people as possible. I am calling on Congress to require all new passenger vehicles to achieve a minimum fuel efficiency of 40 mpg, which can be done without decreasing weight or safety with today's hybrid technology. I am asking Americans to consider their physical fitness as a measure of their patriotism and to walk short distances (even Congressmen traveling a block to lunch) or use public transportation wherever possible. ANd finally, I am asking Congress to fund a $100 billion dollar [about 1/3 the current CBO estimate of the cost of the Iraq war] "Manhattan II" project to develop fossil fuel alternatives for transportation, with a goal of slashing oil imports by 5% per year. I want Americans everywhere to remember that the most patriotic thing they can do right now is to evaluate how they can keep America the strongest country in the world by making her the most foreign oil independent."

I predict that if Americans had the lemming like response to a speech like this that they had to everything else Bush asked for after 9-11, the oil suppliers of the world would have been falling all over themselves to keep the price down to help us get over our resolve to eschew them. Then our leadership's main problem would have been keeping up our resolve in the face of the cheapest gas prices in decades.

Posted by: patriot1957 | April 28, 2006 01:28 PM

Will wrote:
"Conservation is a matter of will and determination, two things that are drastically increased by financial burden."

I totally agree. However you are only looking at one result of the increased financial burden, the overall lower use of gas and thus oil. But you ignore the higher prices everyone will pay for goods that are shipped (e.g., food using vans and trucks) or services that use fuel (bus and train, I'l leave air out unless you want to include higher jet fuel prices). You will not only have higher gas prices but higher food prices, higher ticket prices for bus and train, and higher costs for all goods that are shipped.

You will succeed in not only reducing the amount of gasoline purchased, but will cause most goods and services to go up in price. Most things will now be more expensive. That's inflation. It can lead to recession and other not so nice consequences.

It would be much more targeted if you simply set CAFE standards so that in 5 years we force automakers who are making 14mpg SUVs to make 30mpg SUVs, which they can do. Toyota is touting a 40mpg van for 2007. This targeted approach will reduce consumption without doing anything except raising the price of cars. Still, its targeted and will not affect most other parts of the economy. Do you see the difference?

Posted by: Sully | April 28, 2006 01:54 PM

Gas costs $7 a gallon in Europe. And there are actually rural areas there where you have to drive to get anywhere. Instead of whining when gas goes up to $3 a gallon, we should be asking what the Europeans are doing that allows their economy to function just fine at such a crazy high price. Rising gas prices are a fact of life. The simple truth is that it's only a matter of time before gas hits $5-$10 dollars a gallon, here in the US. Maybe 50, maybe 100 years from now. And 200 years from now, you'd have to be a fool to think there would be any oil left. So why don't we start acepting the high prices now and changing our lifestyles so that the constantly rising prices don't have such a terrible impact on us?

In inner cities, they have hand gun buyback programs. We should start instituting SUV buyback programs. Bring in an SUV, and leave with a hybrid.

Posted by: Jeff | April 28, 2006 01:57 PM

Sully-

"I totally agree. However you are only looking at one result of the increased financial burden, the overall lower use of gas and thus oil. But you ignore the higher prices everyone will pay for goods that are shipped (e.g., food using vans and trucks) or services that use fuel (bus and train, I'l leave air out unless you want to include higher jet fuel prices). You will not only have higher gas prices but higher food prices, higher ticket prices for bus and train, and higher costs for all goods that are shipped."

What makes you think I've overlooked these costs?

"You will succeed in not only reducing the amount of gasoline purchased, but will cause most goods and services to go up in price. Most things will now be more expensive. That's inflation. It can lead to recession and other not so nice consequences."

That's unfortunate. That's also life. You cannot spend your way out of a problem with money you don't have.

"It would be much more targeted if you simply set CAFE standards so that in 5 years we force automakers who are making 14mpg SUVs to make 30mpg SUVs, which they can do. Toyota is touting a 40mpg van for 2007. This targeted approach will reduce consumption without doing anything except raising the price of cars. Still, its targeted and will not affect most other parts of the economy. Do you see the difference?"

I'm appreciative of this point and I'm appreciative of targeted solutions to targeted problems. As I've said in previous posts, I do not have a particular problem with this approach. It will, ultimately, cost consumers because the price of vehicles will increase. The key difference is that it will not generate any revenue.

I also think you overstate the effect of a 50 cent increase in gasoline. When gasoline was 2.50 (as opposed to 3.00) we weren't doing infinitely better off than we are now. And European economies, though not as strong as ours, still manage to get by at 4.50-7.00. How do you know businesses are not as guilty of fixable consumption mistakes as individual consumers?

In any event, I like your proposal as much as anyone's. If you want to enforce better gas efficiency standards on car companies, more power to you.

Posted by: Will | April 28, 2006 02:11 PM

today I took my American-made Saturn in for service - yeah, it gets 36 mpg - and was passed by a car that had a wrapper ad on it saying it got 100+ mpg, because it was a Toyota Prius that had been converted to a plug-in hybrid (recharging from electricity, which in the West comes from hydroelectric, wind, and solar power mostly).

Why does the White House hate solutions like this which involve increasing America's energy independence? Does he _want_ us to live in Fear?

Posted by: Will in Seattle | April 28, 2006 02:12 PM

"we should be asking what the Europeans are doing that allows their economy to function just fine at such a crazy high price."

By keeping the price of gas high, Europeans kept living in their cities. They kept taking public transportation. They kept local markets instead of buying all their food from a few McMegaFarmers.

Today in any urban area of western Europe you can walk from your dwelling to a market featuring fresh, high quality local food/goods (and with minimal fear for your safety) then walk a few blocks and hop on a clean, safe train and go pretty much anywhere you want to go in comfort. If you need to to drive you put your physically fit svelte body (from all that walking) into a 50 mpg little car.

Today in the US you drive from your suburban home in your gas guzzling SUV to a megagrocery to buy food from a McMegaagribusiness, carefully avoiding getting mugged from inner suburb expansion of the urban blight in the nearby cities. If you need to go somewhere you drive your guzzler over the abandoned railroad tracks, cursing the cost of gas and that your McMegabody and McMega consuming lifestyle doesn't fit into a smaller car.

Decades of cheap gas may have been the most expensive mistake this nation ever made.

Posted by: patriot1957 | April 28, 2006 02:25 PM

Let me address each one of the ludricus posts one at a time. Sorry I had to test 2 oil samples that just came into my lab so I could not address each post right away.

1. In fact JAXAS has a lot of it right.

2. Most all of you are blowing smoke out your you know whats, because it's easy to tell none of you have ever work in the petroleum industry.

3. The reason europeans pay such high prices for petroleum is because of taxes their governments impose to cover infrastructure repairs, health care, subsidies for other industries, etc. not because the cost per barrel is so high. It is our government that is causing the spike in prices. Read my previous post, you might learn something about what is driving these nonsensical price hikes we have had to deal with ever since King George invaded Iraq. If the stupid ass would have stuck to afganistan and chasing down Osama instead of picking a fight with a country we had no business attacking in the first place, we would still be paying less than $2.00 a gallon. Also the idiot who suggested that everyone in america could take mass transportation from any one place to any other place must live in a major city and have never left that metropolis.

Posted by: Lab Rat | April 28, 2006 02:26 PM

You see if any one of you worked in the petroleum field (I have since 1974) you would not be be sound so ignorant. Yes if Americans didn't drive gas guzzling SUVs unless they needed to for some reason ie: snow plowing etc. and people took mass transit where they could. Everyone did their fair share to conserve, then we would not use as much oil, so the oil producing nations would decrease their supply on the market, and prices would still go up, but not as they have since this Administration took office. Actual stocks of crude (in storage tanks) are at nearly an all time high. I agree we should all do our part in conserving of a finite resource, but the price being paid on the market for crude is because of the fear of the idiot in the white house nuking the 4 th largest producer of crude in the world, and that's the only reason. the fear of supply interruption on the world market!!!

Posted by: Lab Rat | April 28, 2006 02:45 PM

Does anyone want to hear something that I just realized? if you take a picture of George W. Bush and compare him to an old copy of "MAD Magizines" cover kid, the resemblance is striking, the two of them could be brothers.

Posted by: | April 28, 2006 03:03 PM

Will_in_seattle puffs: "today I took my American-made Saturn in for service - yeah, it gets 36 mpg - and was passed by a car that had a wrapper ad on it saying it got 100+ mpg, because it was a Toyota Prius that had been converted to a plug-in hybrid (recharging from electricity, which in the West comes from hydroelectric, wind, and solar power mostly)."

1. Yeah, sure your Saturn gets 36 MPG.

2. Your 100+ MPG Saturn relies on Western power grids that burn Coal, nat gas as the 1st, and second largest sources of electricity out West. Electric generation is 30-40% conversion of fossil fuel to energy. So your electric Prius runs using twice the carbon load as a hybrid that runs straight off oil or natural gas.

3. Your idea that the three major sources of electricity out West are solar, wind, and hydro is utter Lefty wishful thinking fantasy. West of the Mississippi the sources from top to bottom, are coal, nat gas, nuclear, hydro.

Hyro is finite, most capacity tapped - and environmentalists are on a crusade to destroy even that - by knocking down dams so they can do more exciting whitewater tourism for wealthy Californians and Easterners...and to "save" some "endangered waterbug".

Wind makes up 0.15 Quad of our net 107 Quad national demand and already is suffering a backlash by conservationists about massive bird kills and visual pollution.
Solar is a joke. Despite 35 years of enviroweenies in total orgasmic adulation of solar as the Gaiac solution - and heavy gov't subsidies - it amounts to only 0.063 Quad, (and shrinking share since the late 80s) of our 107 National Quad demand and is on virtually no one's list of the source of the 20 additional Quads we must find due to immigration in the next 25 years, except the scientifically illiterate "political" environmentalist activists.

Posted by: Chris Ford | April 28, 2006 03:50 PM

Hey Patriot 1957, At one time we were the greatest country in the world, do you know why? I'll tell you so that everyone will know. Our schools went from teaching theology as part of classroom curriculium to emphisis on the math and sciences. At one point in history America was turning out the best trained scientists and engineers, we as a country have gotten away from teaching our children what made us the greatest country in the world to nearly the the bottom of the list for developed countries. It seems awefull funny that our schools are turning out kids that can barely function at a 6th grade level. They can't even read a newspaper or fill out a job application properly because they can't read it. They teach kids to count on their fingers and toes to figure out a simple addition problem instead of making them learn the basics. The schools hand them calculators to do intermediate math problems that I can preform in my head, what happens if the battery dies or worse yet they don't have a calculator? They're lost, that's what!!!

If you want this country to become the power it once was, we need to keep religion out of our schools, pay the people who teach our children what they are worth. If they can't perform get rid of them. Hold our school officials accountable to make sure they are teaching our future what they need to know, and stop the pass the kid just to get them out of the grade they're in. If they don't know the work fail them, hold them back until they do know the work. We put a man on the moon with computers that had as much memory as a cell phone now days. In order for our nation to once again become great we need the next generation to learn the basics, Math, Science, History, English, social studies, don't take away music, art, and gymnastics, as these are part of a well rounded education. let our kids be kids, but educate them so they can once again make this the best country in the world.

Posted by: Lab Rat | April 28, 2006 03:54 PM

Lab rat - a big AMEN to everything you said.

I work in the Human Genome project field. I find it telling that the main government sponsor of the Human Genome Project is the Dept of Energy. People are indeed our most important natural resource.

But no matter how smart our kids are, if the grown-ups refuse to actually create and fund the programs necessary to develop fossil fuel sparing transportation, we will fare poorly againt China, who can overwhelmingly outnumber us in expendable soldiers and is now occupying a large proportion of our science and tech grad school slots (because we dont' have our own grads to fill them).

And to whomever was talking about plug in cars. While it kills me to agree with him, Ford is right that changing from fossil fuel gasoline to the fossil fuel using power grid is only putting a band-aid on the problem. I would imagine the world natural gas markets are getting an education from the oil market right now. Although a significant portion of our power grid production is water and nuclear, it is still HUGELY dependent on natural gas.

Posted by: patriot1957 | April 28, 2006 04:36 PM

Eugene Robinson opinion piece inside WP today, does a nice job on topic with a light touch that is fully aware. Don't miss it while it's up.

Posted by: On the plantation | April 28, 2006 05:00 PM

patriot1957 wrote:
"While it kills me to agree with him, Ford is right that changing from fossil fuel gasoline to the fossil fuel using power grid is only putting a band-aid on the problem."

Which problem? Oil dependence, gas prices, global warming? It would put a nice bandaid on oil dependence if we had all cars double their gas milage in the next five years by switching to PHEV hybrids. Who cares if its coal, hydro, wind, solar or nuclear? It won't be oil and that would be better than our current situation.

As was noted by someone earlier, gas prices would stay the same no matter the amount of oil available.

As for global warming, well, I hate shoveling snow anyway :^)

Posted by: Sully | April 28, 2006 05:07 PM

Gas... is that what you are full of, Patriot?

Jaxas, on the other hand, kicks a**,
Lab Rat is cool cat,
whereas Will's existence is discolored because of his own inherent dullness.

Ford, in the meantime, is a disgrace to the National Zoological Society.

Sally, perceptive commentary as per usual!

Until next week.

Posted by: Emilio | April 28, 2006 05:16 PM

Sully,

I so agree that something has to change and that it has to start somewhere, even if that change is only a bandaid. Its just that our country has such a history of being soothed by bandaids and losing the resolve to solve the original problem. Of course, effective leadership would help that, but we seem to have a shortage of that lately.

Hybrids are today's technology, and in 2001 if our president had asked the lemmings in Detroit to build them and the lemmings in America to buy them (sweetened with tax cuts for doing so) we'd be a whole lot farther along than we are today, and Detroit would be booming and not belly up.

I guess I'd need to see reliable numbers on whether we had the natural gas supply we need to charge up all those hybrid batteries without turning the natual gas market into the current oil market, in which case we'd go from screwed to a standstill.

What I find deeply concerning is that the current goal on the part of our leaders appears to be bringing down the price of oil, not of developing long term strategies that decrease our dependence imported fossil fuel.

Posted by: patriot1957 | April 28, 2006 06:10 PM

Emily tossed in one line - we subsidize oil to keep the cost down ....

No ... it's like the line about why a dog licks itself - because it can

well big oil has been able to get impressively favorable tax treatment from states and Washington for a very long time ... because they can, not because it's needed

it's so frustrating to read people glom onto 1 answer (it's Bush, it's big oil, it's China, it's SUVs, it's lack of conservation, drill ANWER, it's NIMBY to refineries in the US ... )

sh_t folks ... it's all the above .... think of all the stuff you buy .... how much of it would you need to get by?

watch out if the Chinese or Indians want to drive as we do, waste energy in homes as we do ....

with a growing world population there's need for more energy even if we get really clever in conservation ... and there's a need for clever conservation or we'll be at war over scarce energy resources - like we ended up doing with Japan during WW II;

Posted by: Mill_of_Mn | April 28, 2006 06:21 PM

About ANWR drilling too ...

i'm not that worried about the critters up there .. but that oil isn't going to the US .. most likely Japan and China .. if tapped.

and if oil reserves are dwindling (yes, oil is finite, but of unknown quantity) then why drain America first? Why tap ANWR, Gulf of Mexico fields - let the Saudi's, Iranians pump 'till their dry, then bring on local resources

while we work like crazy to use less oil for our needs

if we included US military spending in the current price of oil, instead of just what oil market people pay nominally (what is it, about$75 barrel now) ..... with the military spending ... what's it run? Hell, a large amount of the US military budget is directed at forcing the middle east to continue to supply the west ...

imagine if Saudi Arabia went the way of Iran, the Talibab, Osama, etc? Imagine if Iraq joins the theocracy club .... all democratically elected to boot ...

Posted by: Mill_of_Mn | April 28, 2006 06:29 PM

"and there's a need for clever conservation or we'll be at war over scarce energy resources "

AMen.

Posted by: patriot1957 | April 28, 2006 06:43 PM

The US uses a lot of the oil output of the world.

7,191 million barrels in 2002 compared with 1,935 million barrels for China.

That's a lot of per capital oil consumption by US Citizens. What do we use it all for?

2/3's goes to make fuel for cars, trucks and planes. We use the other 1/3 to make plastics and synthetic materials.

Ergo, we can save a bundle by making our transportation system more fuel efficient.

We get 17% of our oil from Saudi Arabia, 16% from our friends the Mexicans, 16% from our Canadian neighbors and 13% from venezuela (in 2002).

Who as the vast majority of the oil reserves? The mid eastern countries of Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Iran and Iraq. 261,000 million barrels -Saudi Arab compared to say 77,800 for Venezuela, 15674 for Mexico, 4,500 for Canada. Russia has total reserve estimated at 60,000 million barrels by comparison.

Canada though as a bunch of tar sand that can be processed into oil if we would just invest the money to create the facilities to do this. Total value: 174,000 million barrels of oil. I always did like the Canadians, but back to the point.

2/3's of our oil imports are spent on vehicle fuel. WOW!

For political as well as environmental and cost issues we could easily find ways make our transportation system more fuel efficient per mile travels.

Scooters! But I'll admit plus size girls do look good to me.

Source:
National Geographic "The End of Cheap Oil"
June 2004 Issue.

Posted by: Richard Katz | April 28, 2006 08:00 PM

Jon M, the only thing I can say to you regarding mass transit is this: A businessman can land ast the airport in Hong Kong or Singapore and--owing to the modern mass transit sytems in place there--go anywhere he needs to conduct his business safely, efficiently and timely. Why? Because of partnerships between industry and government to make the necessary investments in a transportation stucture based on rationally thought out needs rather than one based on maintaining a profitable status quo for a handful of billionaires.

For Will, I haven't the foggiest idea of what you mean by terms like "drastic pussyism" or "drastic cretinism". But as for "cretinism" as I understand it, it has to do with a form of physical and mental retardation, which seems to track well with someone who uses this sort of insulting rhetoric when they have no substantial counter arguments to make.

I assume that "pussyism" is a reflection of your bigotry against human beings who possess a vagina. I do not, but I also fail to grasp what possible relevance the use of a vulgar term that represents a vital part of the female anatomy has to do with the argument at hand, other than to point out that hold to an archaic view that anyone who demonstrates an ability to articulate an intelligent argument grounded in a classical, liberal education is to be equated to a woman--a gender which, it seems, you must lack respect for.

As a practical matter, it has been the "dicks" who have been pretty much in charge of running things since we came down out of the trees. Perhaps you should give some thought to the progressive idea that maybe it is time for the "pussies" to rule for a while.

Posted by: Jaxas | April 29, 2006 10:14 AM

I cannot print this artical. you post no Print access to Oil and Gas dependence articals 1 and 2.

Posted by: lefthe@sbcglobal.net | April 29, 2006 01:22 PM

Jaxas writes - "I assume that "pussyism" is a reflection of your bigotry against human beings who possess a vagina. I do not, but I also fail to grasp what possible relevance the use of a vulgar term that represents a vital part of the female anatomy has to do with the argument at hand, other than to point out that hold to an archaic view that anyone who demonstrates an ability to articulate an intelligent argument grounded in a classical, liberal education is to be equated to a woman--a gender which, it seems, you must lack respect for."

Only a pussy like you, Jaxas, could play a "Sexist Victim" Card while not being a "person of gender discrimination themselves."

Why not spend your time more appropriately and go to a movie theater so you can boo the insensitive audience who cheer the homicidal bigotry of those on Flight 93. Those misguided passengers and crew that sought an unpeaceful resolution to the hijacking and displayed attitudes and physical behaviors hostile to the Islamoid guests on board, rather than engage them in dialogue to determine the root causes of why infidels such as you made them act out on their grievances. Or at least stay at home and recognize you are just a thumb sucking pussy that would have spent his last moments curled up in a ball whimpering if the Islamoids had refused your attempts to "verbally de-escalate the situation".

I'd say you have a tiny black heart, but you'd probably get on your High PC horse and get all invigorated and righteous that "black" is a racist slur in any "black-white" metaphor proferred.

Posted by: Chris Ford | April 30, 2006 02:40 AM

Jaxas-

Cry me a river.

http://dictionary.reference.com/search?q=pussy

Slang. A man regarded as weak, timid, or unmanly.

Used in this case to refer to people like Emilio who live in a perpetual state of government entitlement, as if Uncle Sam owes them a particular low price for a gallon of gasoline. This point of view reflects a weakness in thought, a timidity about facing problems without the government's help, and an unmanly failure to ask what you can do for your country as opposed to the other way around.

Posted by: Will | May 1, 2006 10:26 AM

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