Rising oil prices-a GOOD thing?! (updated)

So today oil hits an all-time high of over $72 a barrel—nearly quadrupling since 2002.

Ouch.

I gotta admit; I’m a bit ambivalent about skyrocketing oil prices.

Of course, I can’t deny I didn’t enjoy it when my receipt rang up at almost twenty bucks today after I filled the Corolla I drive. And I loath the idea of these corporate fatcats blissfully raking in the money on the backs of the families who are struggling to make ends meet and who are having to somehow come up with a little more gas money to get to work each day.

But a part of me feels a little bit of glee. A small, mean part of me to be sure. A bit of sinful schadenfreude, perhaps. And also a hopeful part of me.

I can’t help feeling it serves America right. And maybe it will get us to think about our actions.

Maybe it will get us to reconsider purchasing those behemoth SUVs which get a couple miles-per-gallon. Maybe we will pause before hopping into those vehicles several times a day to drive all over town. Maybe we’ll start planning our time and trips more efficiently. Maybe we will start looking to carpool rather than driving alone 80% of the time in a vehicle with a 10-occupant capacity. Maybe we will think about using public transportation. Or—heaven forbid!—maybe we’ll try biking or walking to get around. Get some fresh air, get the heart rate up, see the world around you without an isolation bubble. You might be surprised at how much you like it!

Of course, what we pay at the pump is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to petroleum. Oil is a huge input in the harvesting of food (fuel for tractors, etc), and so grocery prices will rise. Many of the clothes we buy are made of synthetic fibers, and plastics are key components in perhaps the majority of consumer goods. As oil plays a key part in the manufacturing of those materials, expect an impact on the prices of those goods. And all of these things must be transported from the producer to the retailer or consumer—bringing up vehicle fuel again. The rise in transportation expenses will show up at the register.

Maybe we’ll have to think more about what we purchase. Maybe we will take this as an opportunity to evaluate our need for “stuff.” Maybe we can do without. And for those things we still feel justified in having, perhaps we will be more conscious of the source. If we buy locally produced products, we reduce the transportation requirements, with the consequent impact on our environment—and our wallet. Plus we are keeping the money in circulation in our community, rather than shipping it across the states or even the globe. When money stays in a community, its impact on the community multiplies greatly.

Maybe, just maybe, the rising oil prices will make us stop our cultural epidemic of conspicuous consumption, lead us to more thoughtful, conservative choices in what we do, and lead us to be the good stewards of this planet and of our bodies that the Lord intends for us to be.

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9 Responses to “Rising oil prices-a GOOD thing?! (updated)”

  1. EjIMBo Says:

    You need to leave out one of the “M”s and change your web site name to “A Liberal MORON”.

    Why is it you libs can’t stand people having success if that success means freedom from the tyrranny of a socilaist regime? Why do you people always have to have the attitude that “the world would be so much better if only people would do what we say”? Your condescending attitude towards freedom and the American way, the way that has liberated all the people who ARE free today, is despicable and shameful. People like you don’t have a clue what the world is all about, and you are incapable of reasonable, logical thought.

    Here are some FACTS for you. Facts that I’m sure you won’t acknowledge in context.

    I don’t know the stats for the USA, but in Canada, where I live, this is the breakdown of the price of gas here, on average, Canada-wide:

    Crude costs: 37%.
    Refining and marketing costs: 17%
    Taxes: 43%.
    Profit: 3%.

    Go back and read those percentages again. Those are not typos or mistakes. Let those numbers sink in, especially the last two. I would think US numbers would be roughly similar.

    The amount of tax that the government collects is nearly fifteen (15) times the amount that the “ruthless, evil, wretched” oil companies “rake in” of that money at the pump. The oil companies do all the work, and the government just says “give us 43% of your sales”, sit back and blow it all on worthless social programs that buy votes among people like you.

    So if the price of gas is $3 per gallon and the oil companies remove ALL THEIR PROFIT, the price of gas would still be $2.91!!!! Yeah, that nine cents is really gonna make a difference to you, isn’t it? How about removing the $1.29 in taxes instead, making that $3 cost into only $1.71. Now THERE’S a difference!!!

    To understand this right you also have to remember that the taxes are applied to the value. So when the oil companies do have to raise their prices, the taxes automatically increase proportionally along with it. So put another way, when the price of gas goes up, the GOVERNMENT collects even more money than the oil companies do!

    Here in Canada, the bastion of liberalism that all you leftists love to think is nirvana, there are up to five separate and different types of taxes on the price of gas, including Federal Excise tax, Provincial tax, Goods and Services Tax (the infamous GST, another federal tax), Provincial SALES tax
    (the other provincial tax isn’t enough I guess) and in some areas, a transit tax.

    To say that the oil companies are “blissfully raking in the money on the backs of the families struggling to make ends meet” is not only intellectually vapid, but just plain stupid. That’s right I said STUPID!!!

    Like all liberals, you are bitter and angry at all the wrong people. If you had another brain, it would die of loneliness.

    There’s no point in arguing with you though. No matter what facts and proof you put in front of your unseeing eyes, you’d still refute it because then youe can’t hate the people you want to hate.

    I’d say why don’t you move up here to Canada where you can be among your intellectually dishonest brethren, and leave the USA alone so it can prosper and feed the rest of us, but then I’d realise we’d have yet another dumb leftist up here to nullify my well informed vote.

  2. Derek Staffanson Says:

    This last year, the oil industry experienced record profits—not income, but profits. This continued an ongoing boom of profitability over the past few years.

    According to The United States Securities and Exchange Commission Annual Report, U.S. oil refiners made as much as 99¢ for every gallon of gasoline they produced. That would seem to indicate that, under your scenario of $3 per gallon, slightly less than a third of the price of each gallon we pump into our automobiles would be refiner profit (slightly less because the refiner gets their cut before the slight retailer markup at the pump).

    Regarding the rest of your comments, I am unconvinced by your perception of “The American Way.” Suffice it to say:

    claiming something is a fact does not in itself make it so.

    The message of Christ in both mainstream Christian scripture and the LDS faith is not about accumulating all the wealth you can, nor about competing with others to get more. He did not measure success in material wealth or money. Christ taught a Gospel of cooperation, of sharing, of seeking a greater good than that of selfishness and self-indulgence. In both the Bible and Book of Mormon, the Lord spoke not of getting, but of giving, and of the risks inherent in the pursuit of riches.

    I suspect our nation would be better off in following Christ than in any amount of financial or military power.

  3. EjIMBo Says:

    As usual, you libs either don’t addresss what the facts are or you hedge your comments or change the subject. You’ve done all three. Congratulations.

    Plus, you proved your stupidity with the following comments:

    “I suspect our nation would be better off in following Christ than in any amount of financial or military power.”

    Really? How could we have defeated Hitler without military strength and the wealth neded to amass it? How could Japan have been defeated? How are we going to defeat the islamofascist terrorists who have sworn to kill us all off BECAUSE we beleive in Christ?

    You are an idealistic moron (without the second “M”) who lives in a dream world doing great damage to your faith which is otherwise very conservative. Do you even know what the American Way is? Do you not believe that the greatness of America comes from acquiring weath and therefore HAS the ability to help the rest of the world? Do you know WHY the rest of the world is so much poorer than the USA and other capitalist based countries? Do you know anything at all or do you just think that because the world isn’t perfect it must be because of conservative principles? Truth is, buddy, it’s exactly the opposite.

    But it’s pointless to argue with you because you are incapabloe of rational, logical thought.

  4. EjIMBo Says:

    I wish I had writen this, but I didn’t. But he does do a good job of explaining how you morons think…

    I challenge you to refute the specifics. But I know you’ll just skirt the issue with emotional rhetoric and bilge denouncing profit alone.

    ———————

    If you’ve been paying any attention to the morning news shows you will know that the heat is being turned up on so-called “Big Oil” and on President Bush. To listen to the news you would think that gas prices are rising due to two, and only two factors: (1) the evil Big Oil companies are price gouging; and, (2) President Bush isn’t doing anything about it. Democrats are demanding hearings and investigations. They’re clearly trying to create a feeling in Americans ignorant of the true facts that those extra dollars that are being spent to fill up the tanks are the fault of none other than George Bush and the wicked Republicans. Oh … and the media seems to be more than anxious to help them spread the word.

    Let’s take a look at a few facts. First, the cost of crude oil for each gallon of gas sold in this country has gone up from about 35 cents per gallon in 1999 to $1.59 per gallon in 2006. So … crude oil prices go up by 454% over a period of seven years. How much did gas prices go up during the same period? Try 162%. Looks to me like things could be worse.

    So … did George Bush set those crude oil prices? Did the oil companies go out there and set the prices that high? Helllloooo! Do you think the oil producing countries like Saudi Arabia might have had anything to do with it? Is it possible that the ever-increasing worldwide demand for crude oil was a factor? How about the fact that oil exploration slowed several years ago when crude was selling for under $20 a barrel? Now that the price is so much higher many more companies are getting into the exploration business … but it takes somewhere around 5 years from discovery of an oil deposit to actual production. The price of oil didn’t start its uphill swing until about 2004. Do the math. You also have the fact that oil is a commodity that is traded on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Traders have much to do about setting prices. Do you suppose that George Bush is calling these traders in to coach them on just what those prices should be? That’s what the Democrats want you to believe.

    Besides .. can Big Oil set the price, even if it wanted to? As The Motley Fool points out on their website, there are dozens of publicly traded oil companies. Add to that mix the government-owned oil companies like Saudi Aramco, and the hundreds of small private companies (my brother used to be the president of one such company) that are drilling around the world … and the Democrats want you to believe that they all got together to set these crude prices? Not one of these companies wants to seek an advantage in the market place by lowering their prices?

    This is all about playing on the ignorance of the American people for political advantage. These Democrats and most in the media know the score. They understand the difference between gross profits and profit margins … and they know that most Americans do not.

    Once again — just why do you think they defend our system of hideous government education so much?

  5. Brian Says:

    EjIMBo,
    Resorting to name calling is sad. Especially losing the second M, very childish. I am about as conservative as they come. I agree with a lot of what you say, but you don’t come off very well by tossing around names.

    As for big profits, large businesses seem to have larger profits than smaller ones but they are not out of line for the size of the company. Many other large businesses have much larger profits but they are not a target of the liberals in government and mainstream media. I know that will not convince anyone but I am not out to convince anyone. I would bet that most conservatives would agree that we need to reduce our energy use, mainly because it saves us money which we know is all that we conservatives think about. 😉

  6. CRIP BUSH Says:

    I believe in Bush. He is the man that will lead our country into a economic standing which will feed the poor and help everyone asian whit or black. Anyone who says otherwise is probably a terrorist. WHAT YOU GOT ON ME SUCKA XIV BITCHES CRIP LIFE….

  7. jean-paul Says:

    je regrette pour cette message mais je ne sais pas pourquoi c’est mal. pouvez-vous m’aider pour comprendre cette subjet. je crois que “BUSH” est unique un peu. Quiestce cette “BUSH”

  8. BLOOD BUSH Says:

    I really agree with crip. While the war in Iraq seems to create many conflicts with in America because of the over populated worl I believe war are a necessary factor in taking control of our over population problem. With this comes in to play whether or not this war really is for oil or maybe rather to take control of another country and create another democratic society.

  9. jean-paul Says:

    de temps en temps je me sans mayou i think dat there ar menee good pointz brot up! i think dat the war iz to show how much we valu intere but what is point wit oil

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