Price at the Pump
Americans are screwed at the pump – with estimates that gas might hit five dollars a gallon this summer. But here’s the truth: high gases prices have nothing to do with lack of available gas in America.
That’s because for the first time in 62 years – the United States became a net exporter of oil products.
In 2011, our nation sent 439,000 more barrels of oil a day overseas than we imported. That means we’re awash in oil and gasoline, it’s just in the hands of oil barons who are making more money shipping it overseas than selling it to U.S. customers.
So, drilling in Alaska or in the Gulf won’t cut gas prices. Our status as a net exporter of oil also means we’re now the world’s dirt pit – where the dirty work like refining and processing crude is done, because oil barons don’t have to worry about the costs of pollution.
We the taxpayers and consumers pay for all the externalities of oil production – from more asthma and cancers to the environmental damage. In the hands of banksters and oil barons, the United States of America is UN-developing and unraveling.
FROM BUZZFLASH BLOG:
SENATOR BERNIE SANDERS FOR BUZZFLASH AT TRUTHOUT
WASHINGTON, March 5 -
Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and more than 60 other members of Congress said federal regulators should curb speculation in crude oil markets which has artificially pushed up gasoline prices to nearly $4 a gallon.
The lawmakers - 23 senators and 45 members of the House - said in a letter to the Commodity Futures Trading Commission that the regulators must stop Wall Street futures traders from dominating the oil market.
The commission has flouted a provision in the 2010 Wall Street reform law that required regulators to put tough new trading limits in place by Jan. 17, 2011.
"We are disappointed that, more than a year later, the commission has not fulfilled this important regulatory duty," the letter said.
"It is one of your primary duties - indeed, perhaps your most important - to ensure that the prices Americans pay for gasoline and heating oil are fair, and that the markets ... operate free from fraud, abuse, and manipulation," the lawmakers added.
They stressed that gasoline pump prices are up despite high supplies and low demand. According to the Energy Information Administration, the supply of oil and gasoline is greater today than it was three years ago, when the national average price for a gallon of gasoline was just $1.90.
Today, the national average is more than $3.70 a gallon at a time when the demand for oil in the U.S. is at its lowest level since April of 1997.
There is a growing consensus that speculators are to blame. Exxon Mobil, the Saudi Arabian government, the American Trucking Association, Delta Airlines, the Petroleum Marketers Association of America and the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis all say excessive oil speculation significantly increases oil and gasoline prices.
Citing a recent report from the investment bank Goldman Sachs, a Feb. 27, 2012, article in Forbes said excessive oil speculation adds $.56 to the price of a gallon of gas.
"As the cost for American people to fill their gas tanks continues to skyrocket, the CFTC continues to drag its feet on imposing strict speculation limits to eliminate, prevent, or diminish excessive oil speculation," the members of Congress told the commissioners.
"We urge you to take immediate action to impose strong and meaningful position limits, and to utilize all authorities available to you to make sure that the price of oil and gasoline reflects the fundamentals of supply and demand."
(GC NOTES: If I were you I would go to this link and read the comments and sidebars - most informative and funny, as in, Mitt Romney has more positions than the Karma Sutra)