Friday, February 24, 2012

About the Increased Price of Gas at the Pump

How's all that hope and change working out for you when you pull into the gas station and fill up your tank? You may have noticed that the prices are going up again. And, this time, they are going up at an accelerated pace. According to AAA, we are running 13.4% ahead of where gas demands were at in 2008. This means that prices of well over $4.00 per gallon will greet you soon at the gas pump, if the price is not already there.

President Obama is campaigning around the country and has taken to mocking Republicans for insisting that drilling for oil and gas domestically is a good idea to implement on the path to energy independence. He thinks common sense and facts are silly. He is also the man who put in a physicist as the Secretary of Energy.

Here's the thing: no president can be held solely responsible for the price of gas at the pump. However, a president can put in place energy policy that supports our country's energy needs. This president came in to office determined to destroy the domestic oil and gas drilling industry in our country and choose winners and losers. The losers are the oil and gas drilling industry. The winners are the alternative energy producers. He claims to be all about the "all of the above" strategy but his record proves otherwise.

Press Secretary Carney answered the question of presidential responsibility Wednesday at a press briefing:

"The president accepts the responsibility that he identified the next president should accept, which is the need for comprehensive energy policy," White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said today when asked if Obama "accept[s] responsibility" for the high price of oil and gas. "If you're suggesting that there is responsibility for a rise in the price of oil, it's certainly not because of anything he hasn't done to expand oil production," Carney added.

Asked if he believes it is fair for Americans to blame the president, Carney noted that gas price hikes are "a recurrent problem." He added that domestic oil production is at a record high right now and that Obama has opened "millions of acres in the Gulf of Mexico" to drilling.

The claims of record high domestic oil production? This is quite a stretch for Obama to claim credit. It makes a fun sound bite for the re-election campaign but the fact is, the production increases are due to decisions made in the Bush administration. The timeline for oil and gas drilling is not one of instant action. The fact that 2009 is cited as a year with increased drilling speaks to that.

According to EIA’s short-term 2011 outlook, released last week, oil production was significantly higher in 2009 than in the years prior. Obama may have been in office for most of that year, but the oil production numbers are due to action taken before he became president. In 2010, most if not all of the production increase recorded is likely due to action that predates Obama, since Obama didn’t take any major action expanding offshore drilling his first year in office.

And, an upcoming decline in production is expected:

EIA’s short-term outlook projects a decrease in domestic oil production in 2011 and 2012. Newell sees a few reasons for that.

A decline corresponding to an upsurge in offshore production over the past few years would be natural, he said: “That’s a natural decline that we would have been forecasting probably regardless of what happened in offshore in terms of the moratorium and regulation, etc.”

The predicted decrease in gulf production is due at least partly to the administration’s actions taken after the BP oil spill -- an unfortunate projection for the White House, as it’s trying to stay on offense in the debate over gas prices going into the 2012 election cycle.

“A portion of that, though, is associated with the [BP] well blowout, moratorium and subsequent regulatory delays,” Newell added.

The Obama moratorium on oil and gas drilling dealt a blow to the industry and all of the small businesses in the Gulf of Mexico region connected to the industry that has still not seen full recovery.

This is what a liberal ideologue sounds like as she spouts off about oil and gas drilling in the Gulf of Mexico. You'll notice as she brings up the Deepwater Horizon tragedy, she doesn't bother to mention the eleven lives lost, only the environmental event, which as proved to be far less than originally thought. She doesn't mention that, either:

Debbie Wasserman-Schultz is not just a Florida representative in Congress, she is also the Democratic National Committee chairwoman. You'll notice she touts Team Obama's failed green initiatives as the solution to our energy needs. She was Obama's choice for the chairmanship.

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