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Ear to the Ground

Senate Blocks Oil Tax

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Posted on Jun 10, 2008
oil barrels
Flickr / XcBiker

Forty-one Senate Republicans stayed in lock step with the oil industry Tuesday as record gas prices have big oil rolling in profits at consumers’ expense. Even as they face another tough election, Republicans in Congress refused to allow a tax on oil companies’ “unreasonable” revenue.


Austin American-Statesman:

The centerpiece of the Democratic bill was a 25 percent tax on profits that exceed what would have been considered “reasonable” in recent years. The oil companies could avoid the tax if they invested the money in alternative energy projects or refinery expansion.

The bill also would have rolled back oil industry tax breaks worth $17 billion over 10 years and used that revenue to create tax incentives for wind, solar and other alternative energy sources.

It also would have:

Allowed the president to declare an energy emergency if there is an oil shortage, disruption or significant price irregularity in the oil market. Companies would be subject to civil penalties if they set excessive prices during such an emergency.

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By Spike, June 11, 2008 at 3:46 pm Link to this comment

The Senators didn’t ‘refuse’. They were ordered by their lobbyist handlers to ‘Vote Against’. These are not the senators of the People.  These are the paid puppets of the corporate owners of our government.

Chavez sells gas to Venezuelans and others @ 0.12 per gallon.  Why doesn’t your friendly convenience store buy that gas and retail it for a quarter?

It’s time to ask questions of those who control the price of commodities.

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By Spike, June 11, 2008 at 3:44 pm Link to this comment

The Senators didn’t ‘refuse’. They were ordered by their lobbyist handlers to ‘Vote Against’. These are not the senators of the People.  These are the paid puppets of the corporate owners of our government.

Chavez sells gas to Venezuelans and others @ 0.12 per gallon.  Why doesn’t your friendly convenience store buy that gas and retail it for a quarter?

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PatrickHenry's avatar

By PatrickHenry, June 11, 2008 at 2:44 pm Link to this comment

I can think of 41 senators who need replacing.

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By cyrena, June 11, 2008 at 7:33 am Link to this comment

Just giving an agreement to the point that Saddler makes. The only way to effectively resolve what is an eternal issue, (access to energy) is to put the profits of the current ever dwindling supply into alternative methods for producing it.

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By Jim Yell, June 11, 2008 at 7:27 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Our military was highjaked for the oil industry. To the extent that there was any rational reason for invading Iraq, beyond taking focus off of Saudi’s encouraging terror and G. W. incompetence, it was “about oil, stupid”.

A strong case could be made to secure control at lest of large part of Middle East Oil, but before jumping off the edge in a burst of enthusiasm, we should have remembered that such behaviour tends to irritate the locals and dishonor our country and make our putative friends nerveous.

The Oil Industry caused this lack of good sense, any profits they have made the last few years above what they could have expected before should go to pay the debt that is now destroying the country. Perhaps it is time to consider Nationalizing the Energy industry if they are unwilling to pay for the mess they created?

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Purple Girl's avatar

By Purple Girl, June 11, 2008 at 6:59 am Link to this comment

My Hope is that Sen Obama fights fire with Fire and offers the VP spot to Sen Chuck Hagel- an Old School Republican who realizes his party has been Defeated and conquered by the Corps.A Great Military record to cut the legs out from under Mac’s ONLY claim to fame. Has spent his tim eactually working for issues which effect americans- Agent Orange/Vet issues, Autism, Drug coverage for the Elderly, Family Farmers, and he has Railed against this Admin and their Foreign Policy…He is the type of Republican I have only dreamed of. Granted I am Sure here are areas I may not be in lock step with, but they are most likely ones we can find a compromise.
Want to watch McCain Implode? Support Such a Ticket- it will be a Slaughter in Nov. He is Nothing this life long Liberal Dem Fears, I welcome all True Patriots- I am Really ‘color Blind’ when it comes to Changing the Disaterous course we are on,and have been on for Decades. Let’s give a hand Up to those Real Republicans who have been maligned just as badly as US of the True Democratic party. Let’s beat them at their own game- Infiltration and Covert Operations, but we’ll need some help from the other side to succeed.The Goal is to Win Back Our Country from the Grip of the Corps, the rest of Our Freedoms and rights will follow once that is accomplished.

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By dihey, June 11, 2008 at 6:50 am Link to this comment

Presidential wannabes Obama and McCain should stop their demagogic debate on taxes and gas prices and focus on the infinitely more important issues of our national debt, budget deficits and endless borrowing abroad which are more direct causes of our economic woes than oil prices. They need to tell us what their views are on these issues and what their policies are likely to be.
My bet is that both softies will try to avoid these issues like the plague.

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By Saddler, June 10, 2008 at 10:49 pm Link to this comment

G.Anderson, freezing the price of gas sounds like a good idea as well, but it doesn’t do anything to help encourage alternative energy sources.

In regards to the actual proposal, I don’t think the oil companies threat of raising prices further can be taken seriously at this point, considering they are clearly going to raise prices regardless and keep the surplus value.

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G.Anderson's avatar

By G.Anderson, June 10, 2008 at 10:14 pm Link to this comment

Actually I think there’s point to the argument that if we impose a windfall profit’s tax, they’ll just pass it on to consumers in higher prices.

So here’s a better Idea, why not freeze the price of Gas.

Nixon did it in the first energy Crisis, so why not now?

They could also require the Gas company’s to keep Gas at the same supply levels or fine them.

This would give people a chance to adjust to higher energy costs, so why not Freeze the price of Gas until after the election.

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