Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Obama is Not to Blame for High Gas Prices

February 29, 2012 - The continued republican attempts to blame the Obama administration for rising gas prices is a sham.  The federal government is does not have the ability to stem the rising costs of crude oil and ultimately the price of gasoline in the long term.

President Barack Obama
Yes, the Obama administration could order the the release of oil from the strategic petroleum reserves, but this would only lower gas prices in the short term.  Once the reserves were depleted the price of gasoline would once again rise.

Republican's would like the American public to believe that additional domestic oil production would reduce the price of gasoline.  Unfortunately it wouldn't!  Oil is traded on an international market, so oil produced in the United States would be placed on the open market and ultimately may or may not be refined into gasoline for the American consumer.   In addition to this, Republican's would like you to believe that the approval of the XL pipeline from Canada to Texas would solve our problems, but this also wouldn't produce the desired result.  Although the pipeline would create jobs during the construction, and a lesser number of ongoing jobs after completion, the refined oil would also be put on the open market and likely be shipped to countries as far away as China.

John Boehner
Speaker of the House John Boehner answers a reporter's
 question following a meeting of the Republican
conference on Tuesday in Washington. 
(Win McNamee / Getty Images)
The increased oil production may reduce the price of gasoline slightly, but overall worldwide demand would eventually eat up most of the the additional oil placed on the market.

Republican comments expressed recently are neither helpful nor factual. "The president says he's for an 'all of the above' energy strategy -- anyone seen it? I haven't," scoffed House Speaker John A. Boehner (R-Ohio).

"It's time for him to lay his cards on the table," Boehner said. "We've got a handful of environmental groups -- radical environmental groups -- who've stood in the way of having a national energy policy. It's just about damn time that we actually have a national energy policy."

If the Republican party had it's way their "drill baby drill" motto would be their solution to our energy problems at the expense of the environment. I am not against domestic oil production, but if we really want to have it as part of our national energy policy we need to keep it in the U.S. for the benefit of the American consumer. Not being an expert on commodities, I'm not sure if this is either possible or practical, but it certainly would be a way to reduce our gas prices.

The bottom line is that President Obama and his administration are not to blame for the increase in gas prices, the market, international uncertainty, developing markets demand for oil, and the oil companies greed are to blame for this.

If the Republican's would stop lying and place the blame where it truly lies it would be a refreshing change. American's need to educate themselves on the issues rather than taking what either political party says at face value. Let's face it, they will say anything to get elected.