Aren't High Gas Prices What Democrats Want?

If high energy prices were to damage President Barack Obama's re-election prospects, it would be ironic.

Gas prices are spiking. That's great news, right? We have to wean ourselves off the stuff. At least that's what we've been hearing for years. Oil is dirty. We import it from nations that hate our guts (like Canada!). And moreover, we're running out. Oil is "finite." Finite much in the way water is finite.

So why aren't Democrats making the case that the spike in prices is a good thing? Isn't this basically our energy policy these days? How we "win the future"? If high energy prices were to damage President Barack Obama's re-election prospects, it would be ironic, considering the left has been telling us to set aside our "dependency"—or, as our most recent Republican president put it, "addiction"—for a long time.

If Democrats had their way, after all, we would be enjoying the economic results of cap-and-trade policy these days—a program designed to increase the cost of energy by creating false demand in a fabricated market. As the theory goes, if you inflate the price of fossil fuels, the barbarians might finally start putting thought into how peat moss might be able to power a toaster.

In 2008, Steven Chu, Obama's (and, sadly, our own) future secretary of energy (sic) lamented, "Somehow we have to figure out how to boost the price of gasoline to the levels in Europe." The president, when asked whether he thought $4-a-gallon gas prices were good for the American economy, said, "I think that I would have preferred a gradual adjustment."

How gradual? Like, what, four years? Or is it eight?

Part of "figuring it out" surely had something to do with the recent decision by Obama to nix the Canadian Keystone XL pipeline project that would have pumped 700,000 barrels of oil per day into the United States. More oil just means more excessive, immoral, ugly energy use.

Well, get used to it. You can't take three steps without stepping over some potential 10-billion barrel reserve of dead organisms.

According to the Institute for Energy Research, there is enough natural gas in the U.S. to meet electricity demand for 575 years at current fuel demand, enough to fuel homes heated by natural gas for 857 years and more gas in the U.S. than there is in Russia, Iran, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and some place called Turkmenistan combined. Oil? The U.S. Energy Information Administration estimates that the United States could soon overtake Saudi Arabia and Russia to become the world's top oil producer. There are tens of billions of easily accessible barrels of offshore oil here at home—and much more oil around the world.

Yes, gas prices have spiked an average of 14 cents a gallon in the past month and about 30 cents a gallon since last November, according to AAA. Oil prices jumped to a nine-month high—more than $105 a barrel—after the Iranians shut down their own energy exports to Britain and France so they could start a much-needed nuclear program, which is, no doubt, for wholly peaceful purposes.

Given the fungibility of commodities and the track record of civilization in the Middle East, we'll likely always have to deal with occasionally painful fluctuations in the price of energy, regardless of what we do at home—drilling and new pipelines included. Still, fluctuations have a lot better track record than price controls.

Subsidizing quixotic green companies or creating carbon credits won't stop the rules of basic economics. If the gas crunch starts hitting the economy, it's doubtless that we will get an earful of populist hand-wringing and that we'll hear the administration once again blame wealthy speculators and nasty oil companies.

Yet in the end, high gas prices are part of the plan. This is what the administration wants.

David Harsanyi is a columnist at The Blaze. Follow him on Twitter @davidharsanyi. 

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  • Almanian||

    Yet in the end, high gas prices are part of the plan. This is what the administration wants.

    It's as if "consequences that can be foreseen are not unintended." Or something...

    *check's puntuation adn speeking b4 hitting sakjfn*

  • ||

    Its Foreseeable consequences are not unintended.

    And higher gas prices aren't just foreseeable, they are desired by the Administration. Obama is on the record supporting higher gas prices, back in the early days of his Presidency.

  • More profits. Dang.||

    Can't blame the owners for raising the price, because it's the KOCHsucker's piss-on-Obama day.

  • Libertard Panties in a TwIsT||

    Ohhhhh, I really hate you for presenting that perspective.

  • We've got the liberty ||

    To raise Prices.

    And blame Obama.

    LULZ

    Ain't that 'Murka
    You and me, baby
    Little pink houses

  • Primitard reveals...||

    ...He's just another libtard.

  • PROFITZZZS!!#111!!!||

  • Ted S.||

    As I've mentinoed in a lot of places, why is $5/gallon (or pick your price) so horribly wicked when the money ends up in the private sector, but it suddenly magicaly becomes virtuous if the money ends up in the hands of Big Government?

  • cw||

    It's easier to seek rent from the government.

  • ||

    because taxes get reinvested into the economy. Gas prices when spike due to speculation, the profits don't go to the oil companies, nor to be reinvested by the gov't but rather go to financial speculation, which now presents a 40% tax on the economy. I don't know about you, but I don't like taxation, and think only the gov't should do that. Further, you conflate this utility market with the free market. Utilities costs of production can be rightly viewed as a tax on the economy.

  • ||

    Foreseeable consequences are not unintended.

    Fun but entirely inaccurate.

    people put on blinders and miss things all the time...in fact the advantage of markets over planned economies is that the assumption is that planners are incapable of seeing all outcomes while markets can more closely contain and more quickly adjust to unknown information.

    A far better view is to never assume malice when incompetence can explain.

  • H man||

    Agreed, although I've been reading it as a bad decision is not the same as a mistake.

  • Alan||

    Considering that we were essentially subsidizing low oil prices by way of supporting tyrants in the Middle East and killing lots of innocent people there, and simultaneously reducing incentives for innovation in the energy production field, I can't really fault Obama for this. As much as it hurts at present, this may be the one good policy that the Obama administration is remembered for in the future.

  • goo||

    Bi-curious? -Datebi*cO'Mis designed for bisexual and bi-curious individuals to meet in a friendly and comfortable environment. It hopes that all members can make new friends and establish romantic relationships.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Higher fuel costs hit the poor disproportionately harder. Democrats are champions of the poor. Therefore, hey, look over there!

  • Suki||

    Of course, the solution is gasoline subsidies for the 99%.

  • thirtyandseven||

    haha. That'll solve high fuel prices the way gov't subsidies have solved high tuition prices!

  • ||

    than they just have to print more subsidy vouchers. Its not like they can't print fast enough, not with all the electronic gizmos and stuff, and pretty soon a six pack will cost 1 TRILLION dollars - I mean fast printing of money or money substitutes always works out for the benefit of society...

  • ||

    and the poor often drive older cars with poorer gas mileage. Not many Volts or Prius' in the ghetto.

  • o3||

    the urban poar drive neons...lets pretend you knew that mmkay?

  • Brandon||

    Yeah, all those 80's Lincolns, Cadillacs and Crown Vics and Pontiacs around my neighborhood are just for decoration, while their owners hide their Neons except when they are driving them. Do you ever say anything that's not completely stupid, you ridiculous cunt?

  • o3||

    so you live in the hood? where?

  • GILMORE||

    Racist

  • Loki||

    If I had a Neon I'd definitely hide it. And wear a disguise whenever I drive it so that no one would know I own such a horrific pile of misery.

  • ||

    Well they would drive older cars except Cash for Clunkers burned the supply...

  • ||

    the economy contracting and auto manufacturers sold 3 million fewer cars than they had in previous years for 3 straight years. Cash for clunkers only took 100k cars off the road. Sorry to refute sound bites with facts, but that's them.

  • The inner mind of liberals||

    Let them ride the fucking bus.

  • The inner mind of liberals||

    *empty space*

  • The inner mind of JFK||

    *empty space*

  • ||

    Is it champions of the poor or enablers of the poor? Seriously, what happens to the Democrats if we have some major technology breakthrough that more or less eliminates poverty? They don't want a great economy, because then people don't feel as much need to steal from others.

  • Neu Mejican||

    Seriously, what happens to the Democrats if we have some major technology breakthrough that more or less eliminates poverty?

    Like some sort of vehicle that runs on poor people perhaps?

    Problem is, that once you use up all the poor people...you have to move up the income ladder in order to move.

  • ||

    Unresponsive.

  • Polanski||

    I hate the unresponsive ones.

  • Suki||

    Like some sort of vehicle that runs on poor people perhaps?
    Maybe a guy named Rusty?

  • MNG||

    "They don't want a great economy, because then people don't feel as much need to steal from others"

    Jesus you are revealing a lot about yourself lately dude.

  • ||

    Jesus you are revealing a lot about yourself lately dude.

    Yeah us libertarians are the secret super rich rulers of the world and are in fact stealing billions from the poor and giving it to mega-banks.

  • ||

    no, you're the ones that keep the discussion on such a farcical level that we never address how to fine tune the system, find fair taxation and make it accountable. Instead, you want to question why we have to pay taxes at all, and then conflate utilities markets with free markets. Usually from professionals like professors or paid lobbyists; or the ignorant dupes who repeat their sophistic arguments.

  • ||

    It's similar to the mindset going on in the climate debate: Bad news is accepted instantly and uncritically. Good news, you have to convince people to accept and even then they're ready to abandon it at the first sign of the slightest of bad news.

    Shorter ProL: rent-seeking, big-gubmint intrests don't want solutions. They want perpetuation of the status quo.

  • ||

    I agree with your points, but libertarians seldom engage in fair debates. Hell, John Galt is the greatest beneficiary of gov't largess in the annals of lit. Of course impetuous Ayn never let the details get in the way of her hot head, & she didn't suffer challengers; cloistering herself with sycophants. The example for libertarians was set since then. Hayek believed in national healthcare, you guys fail to address this and other utilities are not, and can not be compared to the free market, where alternatives and competition make it so the customer is always right. That can't happen in the prof. market, where you're buying advice after all; nor in the utility market where you get abused for customer service, byoky. If someone in the free market makes an obscene profit, so what. If it happens in the utility market, it's a tax on the economy.

  • ||

    some major technology breakthrough that more or less eliminates poverty?

    What you mean like the telephone, the internet, refrigeration, cars, air conditioning, the light bulb, the electric stove, and PVC pipe?

    All of which has eliminated poverty in the developed world.

  • ||

    Penicillin, ddt, cheap bleach, cheap synthesized fertilizer, and detergent have also been pretty miraculous at pulling people out of poverty.

  • Suki||

    We haven't tried a moon colony yet. Newt thinks it will do the trick. Some may say that Mars is the real answer.

  • Democrats||

    We love poor people. You should try eating at least one before saying you don't like them.

  • Suki||

    The #OWS crowd sums this all up nicely:
    "Mic check"
    "Mic check"
    "What do we want?"
    "What do we want?"
    "We don't know!"
    "We don't know!"
    "When do we want it?"
    "When do we want it?"
    "NOW!"
    "NOW!"

  • KOCHsuckin' Clever!||

  • Matto||

    Brilliant

  • Hobie Hanson||

    By this writer's logic, since we oppose obesity we should want people to starve.

    Garbage up, garbage out.

  • Blacksmithking||

    I don't follow.

  • ||

    “Jesus Christ!” Terri exclaimed, jumping to her feet. “What the hell happened to Precious?”

    “Precious is in Heaven,” the little girl explained as she continued to walk towards her mother with the feline corpse held out in front of her. “She was one of the nice ones, but she got the Pox. The Pox, the Pox, the Pox…”

  • OWS VPS||

    Fossil fuels are for fossil fools. The end of cheap oil heralds the end of everything. Doom doom doom doom doom doom doom.

  • F Hart||

    You've never had a crude oil enema, have you?

  • ||

    Crude oil enema no but gas yes, the natural kind.

  • o3||

    nat gas is the final fossil fuel

  • ||

    The administration may want high gas prices, but it's dumb, because it will also be blamed for high gas prices. And the inflation that may be triggered as a result.

  • anon||

    Inflation is a cause and effect of high gas prices.

  • ||

    I thought there were enough people on this site who know that a price rise in one (or even several) commodities or services is not(necessarily) inflation, a/k/a depreciation of the currency.

    CB.

  • anon||

    Depreciation of the currency results in inflation.

  • Chupacabra||

    When has this administration been blamed for anything?

  • MSM||

    [::blank stare::]

  • MSM v 2.0||

    Oh wait, we blame him for fixing the economy and saving civilization from near certain anarchy and barbarism!!!1!1!!

  • db||

    Don't forget instituting world peace.

  • ||

    In fact, they preemptively gave him the Nobel Peace Prize for that, because it just made so gosh darn much sense at the time.

  • Tman||

    When Obama was running for president and said that he wanted to see gas prices rise the media ignored him about it, and much to McCains detriment so did he.

    And now his plan is coming to fruition and we're supposed to act surprised? Shocked? Disenfranchised?

    I'm tired of people being surprised by this guys actions. He told everyone that he was going to do all this bullshit and most everyone ignored it.

    Jokes on us I suppose.

  • ||

    Not going Godwin here, but Shirer bitches throughout The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich that Hitler called his swing quite clearly in Mein Kampf. We seem to ignore such things on a regular basis.

  • ||

    Not going Godwin here

    Not going pedant here, but...yeah you are.

  • ||

    No, I'm not. I'm not comparing the administration to the Nazis. I'm making the point that we miss foreshadowing like this, even when it's in writing.

  • ||

    You missed my poorly constructed joke. After re-reading it, I can see why.

  • ||

    Don't oppress me!

  • Fatty Bolger||

    Stop microagressing PL.

  • Tony||

    It was Obama's plan for Iran's government to take recent actions?

  • ||

    It sure as fuck wasn't his plan for Iran to join us at the negotiating table. You know, like they asked for over and over again, and we refused.

  • o3||

    no, no, and nein !

    >the offical RW meme remains that obama appeases our enemies by talking to them.

    say 5 hail palins

  • ||

    Good thing I'm not a right-winger, urine.

  • Libertards are Right Wingers||

    Don't deny it.

  • Zeb||

    Pick a handle, fuckstick.

  • Primitard is Retarded||

    Don't deny it.

  • ||

    Yes. Knocking out ME oil production capacity started (at least) with the Iraq war, continued with Libya and now Iran ("trade sanctions" and stuff).

    I understood this when GWB did it: after all, he's an oilman, with oilman buddies, so the value of their holdings & income go up when oil gets more expensive. It is less apparent with BHO but if someone would take a serious look, probably it would turn out that either him or his buddies or his biggest donors are heavily invested in oil -- possibly through intermediaries.

  • #||

    higher oil prices also help the earnings of green energy companies

  • ||

    It was Obama's plan for Iran's government to take recent actions?

    It was his plan to shut down all the coastal drilling. note: he shut down all the drilling companies that did not spill billions of gallons into the gulf.

    It was his plan to shut down the keystone pipeline.

    And it was his plan to put sanctions on Iran despite the fact that sanctions have proven never to work....think Cuba dipshit.

  • Tony||

    Of course the real mind-numbing hypocrisy, as usual, is coming from the other side. The Republicans are blaming Obama for high gas prices, then in the same breath making fun of him over fuel-efficient cars. See Newt's recent comments.

    Their solution to the problems associated with oil consumption is to consume more oil, while lying to the American people about the impact domestic production could have on prices.

    Gas prices should be higher, and in anything resembling a free market that accounts for true costs they would be. But this is an election year, and libertarians appear to agree with Republicans that the best thing to do is to simplify things as much as humanly possible (i.e., high gas prices = Obama's fault), then bitch that the president isn't being more nuanced about the issue.

  • ||

    Are you high? I mean, do you expect us to believe fuel prices have risen due to Obama's mandating more fuel-efficient cars driving down demand? That's idiotic even by your standards, Tony.

    And even if the actual gasoline were more expensive, it could be cheaper for consumers if taxes on it weren't rising regularly. Taxes, by the way, that disproportionately affect poor individuals.

  • ||

    I remember during the last gas crunch, when the Left was crying about it and declaring the usual "Bush's fault!" I went on Kos and asked them why they were so pissed. After all, don't they want high gas prices?

    The Kos folk forthrightly told me that the problem was that the money was going to the "wrong place", i.e. oil company profits. They want high gas prices caused by high taxation so the government gets the money.

    They did squirm at the point that such taxes are very regressive and drive up costs of basic staples. But not enough to back off the idea.

  • MNG||

    "such taxes are very regressive"

    I agree here. It's a big problem in liberalism these days, you have a liberalism that appeals to the more well off that stresses gay rights and environmentalism and one that appeals more to the less well off that wants to see people at the lower end do better. Gas taxes are big for the former, not so much the latter.

    I guess you could come up with ideas to please both, like taxing rich people and using the money to subsidize alternative fuels to make it cheaper relative to fossils.

  • Tman||

    That's idiotic even by your standards, Tony.

    Whoah, hey now. Easy. That's a pretty loaded statement.

  • MNG||

    Wow, did Tman find another liberal who he thinks loses every argument here? It's almost like a pattern...

  • Tony||

    I don't know if I've ever been high enough to think that less demand means higher prices.

  • ||

    Well don't be a quitter, best try again.

  • Shorter Tony||

    My mind is numb.

  • Fixed Shorter Tony||

    My mind is numb dumb.

    FIFY

  • Fixed Fixed Shorter Tony||

    My mind is numb dumb doesn't exist.

  • DarrenM.||

    Of course the real mind-numbing hypocrisy, as usual, is coming from the other side.

    Yes. It doesn't even matter which side you're on.

  • Anonymous Coward||

    Yet in the end, high gas prices are part of the plan. This is what the administration wants.

    Yes, right up until the last two weeks of October. It's almost as if something important will happen in November. Some event where the idiots of America get together and choose which dumbass will fuck them over for the next few years.

  • DarrenM.||

    I'm beginning to thing Dems and Reps should just swap seats every few years and we can do away with voting altogether. Simpler and nothing much would change anyway.

  • rather ||

    The problem isn't the supply; this year's warm winter should have deflated the cost.

    The industry just sells their abundant product to China and therefore keeps are prices from deflating and guarantees they can continue to gouge the consumer.

    Oil exports should be banned when gas is above threshold.

  • The inner mind of liberals||

    Our warm winter DID keep the cost relatively deflated. Our mild winter (and Europe's brutal winter) are the main reason why the spread between WTI and Brent Crude has been even larger than normal lately.

  • rather ||

    No it ain't and don't be a shill without using your name; it's tacky

  • the innermind of conservatives||

    DONT confront iran if it raises gas prices.

  • ||

    Oil exports should be banned when gas is above threshold.

    Because oil is traded on a global market, this would do exactly nothing to affect the price of oil.

  • thirtyandseven||

    Perhaps, but wouldn't it feel good?

  • rather ||

    A twentieth century practice that has outlive its usefulness

  • ||

    Read up on fungible goods.

    We keep the oil for ourselves. Ok. Then the people who used to get our oil buy oil somewhere else. Then the price goes up anyway. It's not like the rest of the world is buying the stuff so they can dump it straight into the nearest stream.

    That's why Iran threatening to sell their oil to someone else is such a bullshit threat. The oil they would have bought somewhere else instead goes to the countries Iran is blockading. Net effect: whatever minor additional transportation costs involved in physically shipping the stuff and maybe some trouble from readjusting logistically.

    Now, if Iran cut off all oil exports... that would actually amount to a genuine threat because it would reduce the overall oil supply. Of course, it's a mutually destructive threat that they can't really afford to make. But anyways.

  • ||

    Why aren't Democrats making the case that the spike in prices is a good thing?

    I wonder.

  • ||

    making fun of him over fuel-efficient cars.

    Nothing sells fuel-efficient cars like high gas prices. That works much better than quasi-moralistic hectoring

  • anon||

    I'm just going out on a limb here, but bear with me:

    If you own and drive a car, you aren't fucking poor.

  • Brandon||

    I own and drive a car, I'm not poor, but GAS PRICES STILL AFFECT ME, dipshit.

  • anon||

    Yes, they do. I'm not contending the effects, as there are too many to be enumerated.

    I was more contending a point earlier that poor prices disproportionately affect "poor" people. Dipshit.

  • ||

    It's not what you say Brandon as mush as how you say it, right Mr Dipshit?

  • ||

    Yeah, that's a limb. It's a limb that only an urban city dweller with access to public transportation would think even existed.

    In a whole lot of this country, there are no buses to pick you up. You either drive or you are a pedestrian.

  • Kibby||

    & have fun being a pedestrian in Arizona during the summer!

  • Zeb||

    Poor is relative. I don't think one needs to be absolutely destitute to be considered poor.

  • shrike||

    Of course this is more Straw Man bullshit about wanting higher gas prices. The partial release of the SPR last year was to lower crude prices when WTI hit $115/bbl.

    When did Reason begin their subscription to Roger Ailes Talking Points?

  • anon||

    “Somehow,” Chu said, “we have to figure out how to boost the price of gasoline to the levels in Europe.”

    Read more: http://www.politico.com/news/s.....z1n8M2RTG7

    Chu is Obama's energy secretary, since you seem to be ignorant.

  • o3||

    shrike - the THREAT to release SPR knocked the legs fm under the speculators...as it would now since supply n demand remain in balance.

  • ||

    Supply and demand are always in balance in a functioning market.

    At the current price, of course.

  • MNG||

    "When did Reason begin their subscription to Roger Ailes Talking Points?"

    It's easier than thinking on your own, and plays well to the ever-growing ranks of conservatives/libertarians here.

  • MNG||

    It all started in our heads, rattling around in those huge empty cavities where brains are supposed to be.

  • AlgerHiss||

    In the mind of the leftist:

    $5 per gallon gas, where most of it goes to an oil company, is bad.

    $5 per gallon gas, where most of it is taxes, is good.

  • Mind of a Right Winger||

    Zero responsibility for pollution.

    Universal birth defect roulette for all.

  • Personal Responsibility...||

    ...is for thee, not me!

  • ||

    Oh, I see. When most of the price of gas goes to taxes, then the gas doesn't pollute any more.

  • Mind of a Left Winger||

    My pollution is DIFFERENT.

  • ||

    You can net out out the effects of a higher gas tax with a lower tax on labor. So win/win

  • Rev. Blue Moon ||

    Again, only if you assume that a) use of oil is a bad thing and b) the United States is not in a prisoner's dilemma vis-a-vis climate change.

    I see no reason that China or India would stop using fossil fuels, which means any economic incentive that reduces our consumption of fossil fuels in effect subsidizes their use thereof.

    How about: lower energy taxes AND lower labor taxes? RBM for President!

  • Barack Obama||

    Let me be clear: America must reduce its dependence on fossil fuels, and I am committed to reducing gasoline use as a long term goal. But I got an election to win, bitches. Therefore I am ordering the immediate sale of the entire U.S. Strategic Petroleum Reserve.

  • anon||

    Great time to quit blaming Bush asshole.

  • thirtyandseven||

    As the theory goes, if you inflate the price of fossil fuels, the barbarians might finally start putting thought into how peat moss might be able to power a toaster.

    ROFL yeah, that about sums it up.

  • Zeb||

    Peat is actually a major fuel source in some countries (Finland for example).

  • ||

    There's a big difference between an increase in prices through a net zero gas tax (where higher gas prices are offset with a lower income or payroll tax) and higher gas prices due to increased demand from developing nations combined with a stagnant supply.

    Using the price signal to would allow the American economy to adjust to higher gas prices, and become less dependent on oil. While also reducing all the externalities of high oil usage

    For example,
    wars in the middle east
    smog,
    asthma
    etc

  • Neu Mejican||

    ^this^

    Also,

    Should Obama base his foreign policy regarding Iran on the impact on oil prices?

    Should government policy be guided by a need to offset the negative economic impact of rising oil prices?

    Etc...
    No serious discussion of the desirability of specific oil prices for the overall health of the nation starts with "high prices good, low prices bad."

  • ||

    No serious discussion of the desirability of specific oil prices for the overall health of the nation starts with "high prices good, low prices bad.

    really?

    http://www.env-econ.net/

  • Neu Mejican||

    Are you trying to make my point for me?
    What is the point of your link?

  • ||

    For example,
    wars in the middle east
    smog,
    asthma

    Smog has been solved, asthma is caused by giving antibiotics to the very young and the pipeline from Canada does not enter Saudi Arabia at any time.

  • Southerner||

    Also, there's always war in the Middle East.

  • Rev. Blue Moon ||

    Using the price signal to would allow the American economy to adjust to higher gas prices, and become less dependent on oil.

    You say that like it is a good thing. If you raised the price of oxygen, it would make people less dependent on air, but I wouldn't advocate for that, either.

  • ||

    It IS a good thing.

    The American economy is built on the idea of cheap oil. That idea is no longer true. Oil is expensive and will become more expensive. Since infrastucture is expensive, and it will take many years to lessen our depedence on oil it's best to start now.

    Imagine if we had spent that trillion dollars we wasted in Iraq on getting off of oil...

  • anon||

    The American economy is built on the idea of cheap oil.

    False.

    Oil is expensive and will become more expensive.

    Relative to what?

    Since infrastucture is expensive, and it will take many years to lessen our depedence on oil it's best to start now.

    Non-sequitur.

    Imagine if we had spent that trillion dollars we wasted in Iraq on getting off of oil...

    Then we'd have ... thousands of failed Solyndra's?

  • ||

    You've got to be kidding me. Look at the effect that high oil prices had in 2008, high oil prices hurt the economy. For example every $5 increase in the price of oil
    http://www.imf.org/external/pu.....00/#table1

    As to relative to what, relative to previous fucking prices. America functions great at oil in the $30-50 a barrel range. By the 80-100 it's a real drag on growth

    I mean heaven forbid we would actually invest in the country, wow how stupid would that be.

  • ||

    Oil is expensive and will become more expensive.

    ummm...per watt generated it is cheaper, less harmful to health and less destructive to the environment then whale oil, animal fat, charcoal, dried dung, manual labor, animal labor, hay and wood.

  • ||

    Oil is expensive and will become more expensive.

    Oh yeah I forgot...oil has pulled more people out of poverty then Environmentalism has...by a factor of billions.

  • Neu Mejican||

    Oh yeah I forgot...oil has pulled more people out of poverty then Environmentalism has...by a factor of billions.

    Oh the grammar...it burns. It burns.

    THAN versus THEN, how's that work?

    And your claim seems to invalidate your credibility when you criticize anyone for making faith-based claims in the future.

    It is more THAN empty, it is hyperbolic.

  • Menth||

    Confucius says: When you can't make counter against body of argument emphasize minor spelling mistakds.

  • Jessie||

    As much as I disagree with the tone of this article I actually agree in a sense: higher gas prices are exactly what is needed.

    There won't be justice until the price of gas actually reflects the TRUE cost such as the horrible damage that's being done to the climate, biodiversity and aboriginal peoples.

    Fossil fuel has powered the white male neo-colonialism that is ruining the planet and its about time the price went up!

  • MNG||

    I love that this is actually how many people here actually think of liberals.

    The caricature is wearing sandals too, you just can't see it.

  • Jessie||

    I don't understand your comment.

  • o3||

    MNG - jessie's maybe a primitive-anarcho spoof?

  • Jessie||

    Wow, talk about an echo chamber! Somebody thinks differently than I do -they must be a spoof!

  • Rev. Blue Moon ||

    Jessie, don't let these white males other you. Keep on keepin' on.

  • ||

    Sandals....and a ponytail. Dont forget the ponytail.

  • anon||

    I picture a dirty hippy. Kinda like the one pictured here.

  • racial politics||

    "Fossil fuel has powered the white male neo-colonialism that is ruining the planet and its about time the price went up!"

    Vote for a black guy, then go sit in the cold, cold dark, bitches.

  • Hidden Bek||

    You people are pathetic. White male neo-colonialism. Like China and India moron?

  • MNG||

    Don't listen to that other guy spoofing me. This totally is what we on the left believe.

  • ||

    You can net out out the effects of a higher gas tax with a lower tax on labor.

    Also- PONIES!

  • Wholly Holy Cow||

    Oh, dear Leftists, fuck you!

    You blamed Bush and his oil buddies (still unnamed of course, since they're figments of the left's screwy imagination) for high oil prices.

    Gas prices are higher than when Bush was in office.

    So care to apologize for lying about Bush and his oil cronies artificially driving up prices?

  • Hidden Bek||

    The worst part is that in 2006 when the Dems took Congress, Pelosi said she had a "plan" to get price levels back down. Ha. It shot up, is actually what happened and no hint of any "plan" that I ever heard of.

  • ||

    Yet in the end, high gas prices are part of the plan.

    No, the plan is to create low demand.

    A high price for crude is the absolute opposite of the plan.

  • ||

    But low crude prices will bring back $2.00/gal gasoline (or even lower). There is no way anyone but the guilt-ridden elite will buy electric cars, hybrids, etc. or ride mass transit in that environment.

  • ||

    Not if you put up taxes on fuel. Fuel taxes are good because they are unavoidable and allow the government to reduce the defecit. And a lower the price of crude is good so there is less climate change and Saudis aren't able to afford so many flying lessons.

  • Ancapistan||

    @ Angus
    You might want to stop taking your talking points from politicians and learn that out of the top 6 countries we import oil from only one is from the Middle East. Until recently the top 2 were Canada and Mexico.

    ftp://ftp.eia.doe.gov/pub/oil_.....mport.html

  • anon||

    But low crude prices will bring back $2.00/gal gasoline (or even lower). There is no way anyone but the guilt-ridden elite will buy electric cars, hybrids, etc. or ride mass transit in that environment.

    The gas price might be low, but the tax on that gas price can be easily adjusted to create low demand.

  • Rob||

    Gas taxes pay down the deficit? Funny, I thought the deficit just keeps going up.

  • ||

    I think gas prices will be the one thing the GOP will have in its favor in this election and it WILL stick to Obama because of his rejection of the pipeline (I know that the pipeline has nothing to do with recent prices, and even had he approved it, it would not have been brought on line for many years, but perception is everything), and because of his quotes referenced in this article.

  • David||

    I understand that a lot of people are freaking out over "spiking gas prices".
    However, we should be looking at a glass half full, not half empty. And by half full I mean that while, yes, gas prices ARE spiking, at LEAST there is plenty to go around. And we're still paying less then the Europeans. Last thing I want is our "wise" government to interfere in the name of " easing the pain of the common folk" and impose price control. Did this not happen before, in the 1970's, to be exact? How many of us would rather wait in line for HOURS to fill up? Sure, gas would be dirt cheap, but there wouldn't be any. What about California energy crisis in the early 2000's? Did they not impose price control on energy sources in California? President Obama should have welcomed the opportunity to build Keystone pipeline with open arms! That would be "helping the common folk", not price control.

  • ||

    If US corporations didn't export so much of our gasoline (gasoline is the largest export of the US -- http://news.yahoo.com/first-ga.....39553.html) then we wouldn't have such a shortage.

  • ||

    lesson for the day you cant steal from poor people, they dont have anything to steal. i have a pontiac sunfire 1997 gets 35-36 mpg. just drove it to michigan and back runs good.

  • AaronM||

    "How gradual? Like, what, four years? Or is it eight?"

    "In a sign of one major internal difference, Mr. Chu has called for gradually ramping up gasoline taxes over 15 years to coax consumers into buying more-efficient cars and
    living in neighborhoods closer to work."
    Times Tough for Energy Overhaul. WSJ Online

    Well, there's "how gradual" for you, in the very article in which Chu was quoted. You'll also note that the same article points out how Chu was at odds with other members of the administration. It's easy to cherry pick a quote out of context and then write your own backstory, hoping that your readers won't go back and find the actual information for themselves. But it's also disengenuous. Reason shouldn't allow itself to be an outlet for partisan attacks launched by pretending that the parts of the truth that don't fit the narrative don't exist.

  • ||

    sophism is never funny, witty nor does it advance discussion. We SHOULD have higher gas prices thanks to a higher gasoline tax. Ideally, gas taxes should cover our road construction costs, and all the externalities associated with gas usage. However, there is a big difference between prices being higher based on taxes, and prices being higher. The recapture of revenues from taxation at least returns the money into the economy. Whereas, high gas prices based on speculation (as we see today) taxes the economy yet all the revenues are privately held. So, the silly title commits several fallacies, strawman, false dichotomy, hasty generalization to cite a few.

  • ||

    "...the barbarians might finally start putting thought into how peat moss might be able to power a toaster." great line. insightful argument. (SAVE THE PEAT BOGS)

  • ||

    SAVE THE PEAT BOGS

    this will never work because some 'scientist' will discover a heretofore unknown 'endangered species' that lives ONLY in peat bogs- so, no new source of energy there...

    I want cheap gasoline, goddammit
    fuck the whales
    fuck the snail darter

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