Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Falling gas prices

At a recent news gaggle Tony Snow said that Bush was not personally responsible for the falling gas prices; that he was not, himself, making the oil companies reduce prices. Words to that effect. The funny thing is, his remark was not in response to the question he was asked. He had been asked if Republicans were happy about the falling prices.

I always love it when people defend things they haven’t been accused of. Makes me sort of think, “Aha, there’s a skunk in the woodpile.”

He went on to say, "It also raises the question, if we're dropping gas prices now, why on earth did we raise them to $3.50 before?"

Well, duh. There wasn’t an election pending then.

Actually, I don’t suspect Bush or the Republicans of raising or lowering gas prices. I think they would to pretty much anything to win an election, but I don’t think they are the ones pulling the plug on prices. I have no doubt that it is the oil companies who are reducing the price of gas themselves, and I have no doubt it is related to the November elections.

Of course the oil companies deny that.

Joanne Shore, an Energy Department analyst was asked if it was possible that oil companies would reduce prices to help Republicans. She responded, "What company in their right mind would step forward to kill their profit?"

Obviously Shore has not taken Economics 101. Neither have I, for that matter, but even I can figure out that if I drop my prices to look good for a couple of months, and by so doing assure the continuance for another two years of the conditions that have been making me huge profits, then I’m going to recover way more profit in the future than what it cost me to temporarily lower my prices to assure that continuance.

Lowering prices for a couple of months will not “kill their profit.” Letting their friends the Republicans lose control of Congress will “kill their profit.”

It bothers me that the public would disregard death and destruction in Iraq, illegal detention and torture, corruption and waste in government, and loss of essential liberties, and would vote Republican because they are happy about the price of gasoline. But it seems they are doing so, because the Republicans are gaining in the polls and they only thing that has changed is the price of gasoline.

Little wonder that the rest of the world doesn’t take us seriously.

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