Reader robc writes in with an SF Chronicle story about the Saudis telling other OPEC nations to take a hike:
Hours after suffering a rare setback in a negotiating session at OPEC's headquarters, Saudi Arabian officials assured world markets on Wednesday that they would ignore the wishes of other cartel members and continue to pump plenty of oil.
The late-night bargaining session ended early Wednesday morning with a surprise declaration that OPEC would cut production to shore up sagging prices. Saudi negotiators publicly endorsed that position, but then spent much of Wednesday privately spreading the word that they did not feel bound by it.
The back-and-forth illustrated new pressures and power politics at play in the group that controls 40 percent of the world's oil production. The meeting could be a harbinger for the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, as the cartel faces its most difficult challenge in years: how to respond to falling oil prices in a weakening global economic climate.