Gas prices are catastrophe

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  • Earl
    June 1, 2008 9:56 p.m.

    @Roland Kayser: you're correct that western europe uses about half the oil we do. But I don't know if that contradicts my point. What would happen if the U.S. cut their energy consumption in half to equal the same per capita usage as those countries? Nothing? And you know why they use less oil, right? Taxes. The cost of a gallon of gasoline is what, $10, $11 because of the added taxes? So there's a much greater incentive to conserve. And doesn't population density have something to do with the success of public transportation so traveling is more efficient? I think this may be a case of comparing apples and oranges to a great extent.

  • Pop Smoke
    June 1, 2008 8:42 p.m.

    Undermining our moral fortitude? Nothing new there.
    That's been going on for the last 60 years.

  • Mike Richards
    June 1, 2008 8:27 p.m.

    Gus Talwynd,
    You have a valid point. The same pipe lines are used to transport different products from a refinery to the buyers. One day jet fuel might be flowing through the pipe line. Another day a particular grade of gasoline might be flowing.

    Some retailers, let's say Maverick (this is only an example) might buy from different oil companies, depending on the price and the availability of the desired product.

    However, even thought there are always exceptions, the Energy Information Administration tracks each company and reports where it buys crude oil. What ends up in your vehicle depends on factors that are out of our control.

    But, if everyone that currently buys Texaco gasoline (like me) told the local Texaco station operator that they would be buying from Sinclair (like I will be doing tomorrow), and that I would not be buying any more gasoline from companies that bought oil from the Persian Gulf, and if those numbers amounted to thousands of motorists, someone would see the trend and the ripple effect would begin.

    Then the problem becomes one of supply and demand. If Sinclair had too little gasoline to meet the demand, their price would rise and ...

  • common sense
    June 1, 2008 5:03 p.m.

    It's special interest groups that have put so many restrictions on drilling and refining here in the states, not one particular political party...

  • Gus Talwynd
    June 1, 2008 4:54 p.m.

    How do you know that oil purchased by one company (e.g. Exxon/Mobile) has not been refined and is being sold under another label (e.g. Standard) since not all the refined product follows the same path to the consumer. Small gasoline stations buy their gasoline through commodity traders dealing with the excess stocks of the major refineries.

    Certainly there are specific formulations for most of the major brands, but the refineries will change from one batch of crude oil to another in order to meet their customers needs. And, if a major brand is short on refined gasoline, they just need to go to the market and buy from whomever is selling.

    The gas you put in your car may have come from a variety of oil fields from around the world initially only to be mixed at some point in the process. Petroleum commodity traders deal in their commodity and are not concerned about the place of origin.

  • Roland Kayser
    June 1, 2008 3:36 p.m.

    To Earl: Per capita, Europe uses about half as much oil as the U.S. Their standard of living is comparable to ours. General health, longevity, and infant mortality are all better than ours. We could conserve a lot of oil without impoverishing ourselves.

  • Earl
    June 1, 2008 3:16 p.m.

    Oilman gets it right. The idea that we can achieve energy independence is a pipe dream. And so what if we're addicted to oil? Did you know there's a direct correlation between the consumption of oil (or other mass energy source) and the standard of living? Or infant mortality? Or general health and long life? Or even education? Once you cut back on energy consumption (as a nation), you can expect a slowdown of civilization. I'm not sure we want to become more like Haiti or some other third world nation with low energy consumption.

  • Mike Richards
    June 1, 2008 2:24 p.m.

    To John 9:51 a.m.,

    Sorry for the confusion. I used the words "Saudi Arabia" when I should have used the words "Persian Gulf". Unfortunately, my source also used the words "Saudi Arabia".

    However, the U.S. Government, Energy Information Administration, publishes Official Energy Statistics, where you can see for yourself which companies import oil from the Persian Gulf and which do not. (Sorry, but the DN does not allow posting of web sites.)

    Locally, Flying-J, Sinclair, and Shell are listed as NOT importing oil from the Persian Gulf. As I wrote earlier, CITGO does NOT import oil from the Persian Gulf, but DOES import oil from Venezuela.

    Supporting retailers who do not import oil from the "Persian Gulf" or from Venezuela, would at least direct our oil dollars to countries who are more friendly towards the United States.

  • Anonymous
    June 1, 2008 1:10 p.m.

    It was Jebb Bush and his brother who stopped oil drilling off Florida's West Coast. Rush has been silent. Why do mindless conservatives blame liberal for the idiot they elected twice?

  • Bibliophile
    June 1, 2008 11:15 a.m.

    John 9:51, meet Dave 805. Dave and you have a lot in common. Or perhaps you only have one thing in common. You cannot, or refuse to, see that under the Bush Administration, we have been exploiting the West's fossil fuel resources at an unprecedented rate. ANWR and the continental shelves are different, and we will no doubt develop them in future. They will supply some petroleum for a little while; but in the interior West, we're burning through our bank account as fast as we can. Come on out to the Uintah Basin and witness it for yourself!

  • Chad
    June 1, 2008 10:54 a.m.

    The above comment about not buying Saudi oil and which companies to buy from is false. All oil companies world-wide purchase to some degree or another oil from nearly every oil producing nation on the planet. Here is an excerpt from an article on MSN Money:

    NEW YORK (AP) - State-run Saudi Arabian Oil Co., or Saudi Aramco, and U.S. oil giant ConocoPhillips said Friday they have approved continued funding for the development of a refinery in Saudi Arabia's Red Sea city of Yanbu.

    So Conoco not only buys oil from Saudi, they are in a joint arrangement.

    It is all controlled by market forces, worldwide, something us near-sighted blinder-wearing americans cannot ever seem to grasp. We do not control the world. In many respects, the world controls us just as much. The only answer is to start looking for ways to replace oil, because one day it will run out. Prices are a very short-term outlook. So we may have to go to fewer movies, eat out less, and buy fewer iPods and plasma tvs in order to afford gas. Maybe even have to trade in that 4 miles per gallon hummer on a civic. How sad for us!

  • OilMan
    June 1, 2008 10:53 a.m.

    A bit over the top. I hope it takes more than this to wear the fortitude of the United States.
    Like it or not, and we're going with not apparently, we're becoming citizens of the world. Oil no longer exists in an American bubble on either the supply or demand side. The only thing we can absolutely control is our own action and attitude, which is to say our consumption, and no one is seriously talking about that. Until the price is high enough to change our ways, all we will do is complain.

  • Amen!!!
    June 1, 2008 10:41 a.m.

    to John 9:51

  • Roland Kayser
    June 1, 2008 10:08 a.m.

    To Dave: The U.S. is still by far the world's larges oil consumer. If we cut back significantly on our consumption, it will affect world oil prices.

    To DBG: The low value of the dollar is a major factor in oil prices. The way to increase the dollar's value is to stop running budget deficits and trade deficits. Easier said than done.

  • John
    June 1, 2008 9:51 a.m.

    There is no such thing as knowing where a barrel of crude came from. Saying that one company doesn't buy from Saudi Arabia is a lie.

    We have reduced our usage, and prices have doubled, so that is another urban legend

    It is not a FREE market in the United States since the US will NOT permit the oil companies to use our own resources, therefore, to state that the government cannot help us with this problem is the third lie in four posts.

    Democrats have shut down all attempts at offshore, ANWR, and new drilling in the west. That leaves us at the mercy of our enemies. On this issue, democrats are complete idiots.

    We may not be able to use our resources to completely free ourselves, but we can reduce our dependency, and that will help prices. We could build more refineries, but again, the demos say no, we can't.

    China is drilling 50 miles off the coast of CA and FL. I am sure they will be happy to take what they get, and sell it to us for $200 a barrel. How can the democrats justify letting them do it, but not allowing us access

  • DBG
    June 1, 2008 8:51 a.m.

    @reever fever: Artificually low? I think you need to dig a little deeper. Price of gas in Europe are high because 70 percent of the cost is taxes. US only has about 11 to 15 percent of the cost of gas as taxes. Remove the taxes and tell me if they are the same or not. Americans pay MORE.

    @Mike Richards: Part of the problem isn't where the oil comes from. The high price mostly comes from speculators during trading. Not to mention the historicl low value of the dollar which makes imports very expensive. Remove the speculating and increase the value of the dollar, we are sure to have lower prices.

  • Dave
    June 1, 2008 8:05 a.m.

    Using less will not bring the price down, there are to many other buyers. Developing our own resourses and keeping them 'of market' is the solution, but it isn't going to happen with the Dems in control.

  • Mike Richards
    June 1, 2008 7:49 a.m.

    While we, as consumers, can do little to lower the price of oil, we can buy our gas from companies that do not import oil from Saudi Arabia.

    Why pick on Saudi Arabia, when oil prices world-wide are just as high? Saudi Arabia uses our oil dollars to support anti-American activity. Why would anyone send money to a country who does that?

    Here is a list of companies that don't buy oil from Saudi Arabia:

    Sunoco
    Conoco
    Sinclair
    BP/Phillips
    Hess
    ARC0

    Here is a list of companies that DO buy oil from Saudi Arabia:

    Shell, 205,742,000 barrels
    Chevron/Texaco, 144,332,000 barrels
    Exxon /Mobil, 130,082,000 barrels
    Marathon/Speedway, 17,740,000 barrels
    Amoco, 62,231,000 barrels

    In addition, CITCO, buys oil from South America, including Venezuelan, whose President Hugo Chavez has expressed his hatred of our country.

    If everyone voted with their oil dollars, some change might come about.

  • reefer fever
    June 1, 2008 6:51 a.m.

    That panic you feel is a junkie unsure where his next fix will come from.
    We have become addicted to artificially cheap and plentiful oil and have built a lifestyle around that delusion but it won't last forever.
    The politicians can't bail us out of this one.

  • Roland Kayser
    June 1, 2008 12:52 a.m.

    The government doesn't control oil prices. They are set in a global free market. Willing buyers pay willing sellers. If you want cheaper gas, use less gas. The decrease in demand will bring the price down.