Truth behind the price tag
Deciphering Obama’s Approach to Oil, Gas Prices & America’s Energy
by Heather Lawver
Coming soon: The truth about domestic production, how much of what you pay at the pump goes to taxes vs profits, the slow down in oil leases, & so much more!
Clearly, no American President is a God. No single individual, president or otherwise, has absolute control – or absolute culpability – over the price we pay for gasoline.
President Obama is not solely responsible for the rise in gas prices. Similarly, he cannot wave a magic wand & magically lower prices tomorrow.
But President Obama, just like every president before him of both parties, does hold some authority that does indeed have an effect on those gas prices.
I believe that it is absolutely imperative that as Americans, we examine with an open mind precisely what those areas of presidential authority are & how President Obama’s decisions have affected the prices we pay at the pump.
In this section I will show you that President Obama held President Bush responsible when gas prices temporarily rose in the summers of 2007 & 2008.
If President Obama held President Bush accountable then, isn’t it only fair that he accept some responsibility now?
I will also show you the direct words & actions of President Obama & his administration to illustrate precisely where his responsibility lies for rising gas prices.
This section will by no means be exhaustive. I’m not an oil industry expert. I’m merely a single individual voter who has conducted my own research. I will continue to add to this section over time, as I find more reliable, confirmed information.
But I do not expect you to take my word for any of this. Indeed, I hope you don’t. My goal with this section is merely to provide a cursory introduction to this issue, in the hope that you will then conduct research of your own.
I hope we can all go beyond mere partisan talking points. What are the actual facts? What did each individual involved say before they had anything to lose? What did they promise you years ago? How do those promises measure up to today?
Without further ado, here are the topics we will be covering. You’re welcome to jump to any individual topic that interests you. But I’ve written this in this specific order for a reason. Even though I know it’s long, I hope you will start at the beginning & read all the way through so you can see the full picture of what I’m trying to portray.
• Holding Presidents Accountable
Think back. In the summers of 2007 & 2008, gas prices did indeed jump suddenly. Prices reached their peak at around $4.09 a gallon in July – right when gas prices tend to reach their zenith each year. (source)
Of course, this also happened to be right at the height of the 2008 presidential campaign.
I’ve collected a small sampling of campaign videos from that time. These were all officially produced by the Obama campaign. Naturally, then Senator Obama laid all of the blame squarely at the feet of President Bush.
Senator Obama was not the only one who blamed Bush. Here’s a selection of videos showing leading Democrats making the same claims.
In these videos President Obama & his fellow Democrats clearly lay the foundation for holding the President responsible – at least in part – for rising gas prices.
If Obama & the Democrats held President Bush accountable then, surely it’s only fair that we hold Obama to the same standard today.
• Where Were We When Obama Was Inaugurated
It’s important that we set the stage regarding where we were when President Obama was inaugurated in January of 2009.
At that time, the national average for a gallon of gasoline was $1.78.
Of course, gas wasn’t always that cheap. The housing bubble burst, prices slid. So to get a better understanding of how we got here, let’s examine gas prices over the course of the Bush administration.
♦ Gas Prices Under President Bush & President Obama
Whether it was Bush or Obama, when each man took office, the national average for a gallon of gasoline was just under $2. So let’s compare the first twenty-six months of each man’s tenure at the White House.
During the first twenty-six months of Bush’s first term, gasoline prices increased by 7%.
Under President Obama, the first twenty-six months saw a fast, consistent, constant rise in the price of gasoline.
Prices increased by a whopping 67%.
With no end in sight.
Even with the considerable spikes in price during 2007 & 2008, by the time President Bush left office, the price of gasoline had decreased overall by 9%, when adjusted for inflation. With such an incredibly steady, skyrocketing climb in prices since 2009, I highly doubt President Obama will be able to make the same claim when all is said & done.
♦ What Were President Bush’s Failings?
They were many! As an Independent, I’ve never been a fan of President Bush. Philosophically, I’m pretty diametrically opposed to the drastic rate at which President Bush grew the federal government & increased our national debt. If you’re looking for a defense of President Bush here, you’re not going to find one.
What’s the worst thing President Bush did? What, more than anything else, led to those dramatic jumps in the price of oil?
Devaluing our dollar.
The Bush Administration welcomed the decline in the dollar’s value on foreign exchange markets, believing in what my opinion is a false premise: that a debasing of the dollar would improve the competitive position of U.S. companies.
The Federal Reserve played right along, allowing for easy money & ignoring the falling value of the dollar in terms of gold.
What’s the result of these weak dollar policies? Since 2002, the price of gold – and the price of oil – have each increased five-fold. They have risen side-by-side, in near perfect tandem.
To make this point even more apparent, let’s look at it as a matter of pure dollars & cents. If the Federal Reserve had maintained the value of the dollar at 1/350th an ounce of gold, the price of oil today would be around $21 a barrel. And gasoline?
We’d be paying around $1.30 per gallon.
Right where they were on average for 19 years, ending in 2002.
♦ If That Was Bush, What About Today?
The thing is, President Obama is doing precisely the same thing President Bush did. He is carrying on exactly the same weak-dollar policies as President Bush.
Since Obama & Democrats said what Bush did was wrong, why should it be okay when they do the exact same thing?
In fact, these weak-dollar policies are aided by the same Federal Reserve chairman that served under both Presidents – Ben Bernanke.
Like I said, prior to 2002, our dollar was the equivalent of 1/350th an ounce of gold.
Today, it’s 1/1800th an ounce.
President Obama has done absolutely nothing to stop this steady devaluing of our dollar. It’s really no wonder gold & oil are both skyrocketing at the exact same rate.
It’s also no wonder we’re starting to see other nations no longer sticking to the general rule of paying for their crude oil in US dollars. Previously, whenever any nation wanted to buy a barrel of crude oil, they had to pay for it in US dollars.
But no more. Only just recently, Russia & Iran announced that they would drop the dollar & instead use their own respective currencies, in an effort to avoid half-enforced sanctions. There have also been reports that China & India will now be paying for its crude from Iran in gold. (source 1) (source 2)
Analysts used to fear the day that any nation, for whatever reason, would unpeg their oil purchases from the dollar. Half-enforced Iranian sanctions have made that day a reality. That day is here, that day is now.
If more nations follow suit, if our dollar is unpegged from the global oil markets, it will have an absolutely catastrophic effect on our economy & further devalue our currency.
Fuel prices will then jump even higher, even faster.
And we have President Bush AND President Obama to thank, equally, for this pending disaster.
President Obama chose to retain President Bush’s Federal Reserve Chairman, Ben Bernanke. He chose to maintain the same weak-dollar policies.
What other decisions has he made that have had a negative effect on our gas prices & our economy?
Keep checking back! We’ll be adding more information, more sources & more topics very soon!
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