Winner 2013 Webby Awards for Best Political Website
Top Banner, Site wide
Apr 16, 2014

 Choose a size
Text Size

Top Leaderboard, Site wide

A Victory Lap for Obamacare




Paul Robeson: A Life


Truthdig Bazaar
The Oxford Shakespeare

The Oxford Shakespeare

By William Shakespeare


The Death of the Liberal Class

By Chris Hedges
$16.47

more items

 
Report

Paying for War at the Pump

Email this item Email    Print this item Print    Share this item... Share

Posted on May 20, 2008
gas prices
AP photo / Lisa Poole

A steady rise in the price of oil has pushed gasoline upwards of $4 a gallon around the country, including at this station in Rockport, Mass.

By Robert Scheer

What’s it got to do with the price of gas? Would some reporter with access to the Republican presidential candidate please ask John McCain why he wants to continue President Bush’s Mideast policy when it has proved so ruinous for American taxpayers? Because McCain is determined to ignore our economic meltdown and shift the debate to foreign policy, shouldn’t he have to explain why an open-ended military presence in the Mideast will make us economically and militarily more secure when the opposite is clearly the case?

Let’s not waste too much time on the military side of the equation. The argument that troops on the ground have made us militarily more secure is absurd on its face. American resources and lives have been squandered in an inane effort that McCain aptly criticized before becoming a presidential candidate. As a Senate watchdog, he distinguished himself by sharply denouncing one defense contractor boondoggle after another in cases involving hundreds of billions for modern weapons that had nothing to do with fighting cave-based terrorists. But as a presidential candidate, McCain now unabashedly apologizes for every twist of the downwind spiral of the Bush administration foreign policy, from wasteful weapons to inhuman torture.

McCain’s strategy is clearly that of distracting attention from the calamitous economy by sounding the demagogue’s alarm about enemies at the gate. This week, McCain again blasted Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama on the grounds that he underestimated the threat from Iran while ignoring the vast increase in Iran’s power—an increase actually resulting from Bush eliminating Iran’s only effective enemy, Saddam Hussein. The other winners in this folly have been the oil kingdoms that Hussein periodically threatened, led by the Saudi royal family. Seizing upon the opportunity presented by the 9/11 attacks, Bush knocked off not the Saudis, who had produced Osama bin Laden and 15 of his hijacker minions, but rather the royal family’s sworn enemy in Iraq, who had absolutely nothing do with 9/11.

And how did the Saudis thank us? Just check the price of oil, which has increased more than sixfold since 9/11. On Friday, Bush went to dine at Saudi King Abdullah’s bizarrely opulent horse farm and pleaded for an increase in oil production, but to no avail. Bush received the same rebuff in April 2005, when oil was selling for $54 a barrel. On Tuesday, it sold for $129, and the price rise is a good measure of Saudi gratitude for the Bush family’s unwavering support over past decades. Saudi Arabia’s oil minister, Ali al-Naimi, couldn’t have been more condescending when he turned down Bush’s request with the observation that “presidents and kings have every right, every privilege, to comment or ask or say whatever they want.” He added at a press conference, “How much does Saudi Arabia need to do to satisfy people who are questioning our oil practices and policies?”

Enough to get the price back down to where it was when we saved your sorry oil-well excuse for a country, you ingrate, Bush might have retorted. But our bold leader was too polite for anything like that. “He didn’t punch any tables or shout at anybody,” said Saudi Foreign Minister Saud al-Faisal. “I think he was satisfied.” Why? Instead of pointing out that the Saudis could easily open their spigots in gratitude for our keeping them in power, the president threatened the Saudi king not with an invasion but with a U.S. recession. “My point to His Majesty,” Bush warned in an interview with The New York Times before encountering the great man himself, “is going to be, when consumers have less purchasing power because of high prices of gasoline—in other words, when it affects their families, it could cause this economy to slow down. If the economy slows down, there will be less barrels of oil purchased.”

Advertisement

Square, Site wide
He’ll show them—we’ll have a recession, our families will suffer and, boy, will the Saudis be sorry. A regular Teddy Roosevelt. There is no better measure of the failure of Bush’s foreign policy than that, five years after we conquered the second-most important pool of oil in the world, the American taxpayers who paid for this grand imperial adventure are rewarded with skyrocketing prices at the pump.

At least when Bush first hyped his Iraq invasion plan, he had Paul Wolfowitz telling Congress that Iraqi oil would more than pay for it all. Not so McCain, who is so charged with imperial hubris that he is willing to commit to a 100-year lease on Iraq without expecting a penny in oil revenue in return.

Robert Scheer’s new book, “The Pornography of Power: How Defense Hawks Hijacked 9/11 and Weakened America,” will be released June 9 by Twelve.

Click here to check out Robert Scheer’s book,
“The Great American Stickup: How Reagan Republicans and Clinton Democrats Enriched Wall Street While Mugging Main Street.”


Keep up with Robert Scheer’s latest columns, interviews, tour dates and more at www.truthdig.com/robert_scheer.



Get truth delivered to
your inbox every week.

Previous item: Bush?s Commitment Problem

Next item: Presidential Race Ignores Arms Race



New and Improved Comments

If you have trouble leaving a comment, review this help page. Still having problems? Let us know. If you find yourself moderated, take a moment to review our comment policy.

By ECU Remapping, June 24, 2011 at 12:35 am Link to this comment

Perhaps he was really trying to resolve this over a logical and civilized manner instead of a head-on retort.

Report this

By reagd, January 26, 2010 at 10:42 pm Link to this comment

@ Conservative Yankee

Where did you get the info about the rugged six cylinder engine? I am expecting the same hatchback with mr gasket cylinder head bolt kit

Report this

By Conservative Yankee, May 30, 2008 at 5:18 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

By PatrickHenry, May 29 at 12:33 pm #
Re: and I find that while

“Their decendents voted for Bush no doubt.”
They voted for Harding, Coolidge,  and Hoover. maybe you’re right!

Report this
PatrickHenry's avatar

By PatrickHenry, May 29, 2008 at 1:33 pm Link to this comment

Their decendents voted for Bush no doubt.

Report this

By Conservative Yankee, May 29, 2008 at 5:57 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

and I find that while some of what cyrena writes above is with-out-a-doubt true, some of her thesis needs work.

Studebaker was building fuel efficient cars back at the end of World War II. People didn’t want them, they couldn’t do 0 to 60 in 5 seconds.

The Nash corporation also built very economical cars The Metro got 35 MPG in 1955 it was a 2 passenger “Business coupe” and wouldn’t do much over 60 MPH top end. very few of them sold. People wanted Big, flashy and fast, the Nash was none of these so the company merged with Rambler, and made a fuel efficient family sedan. I remember one of the Scout den mothers owned one, it could hold 9 and with it’s three-on-the-tree six option got 25MPG anywhere, highway, city, BUT the company offered no air-conditioned vehicles,  they shunned power windows. In an era where cars were judged by the amount of chrome, (the Buick Estate Wagon had 700 lbs of chrome that year) the height of the tail-fins, and the cid of the engine, the Nash Rambler just didn’t have the “testicular fortitude” and the company faded into history.  Henry Kaiser offered a choice in the 50’s his car was efficient comfortable, and versatile. The Henry J was the first car with a “hatchback, and with the optional side mounts, it could be converted to a station-wagon. The rear seat folded down, and you couls carry a 4X8 piece of plywood. It used the rugged six cylinder engine from Willys and had seats made of pure USA grown cowhide which Kaiser got for free from slaughter houses.
No fins, no speed, on sales.

People remember the Stanly Steam car, but did you know there were other steam car companies?  Dobel lasted into the 1930’s My first ride in a Dobel ave me my life long fascination with steam. The car weighed 5000 pounds, and got 40 MPG anywhere. It could our accelerate a gas engined car, and was so quiet that the builder had to create a humming sound” so pedestrians would hear it coming.

Were you aware that the first vehicle to obtain the speed of 60MPH was an electric car? That the first vehicle to obtain 120 MPH was a steam car?

Back when Henry ford was still a boy working his daddy’s farm, and the Internal Combustion engine was still a plaything for the very rich,  Electric Carriage & Wagon Company of Philadelphia built a fleet of New York taxis.

People had plenty of choice, they just “Chose incorrectly”

Report this

By cyrena, May 28, 2008 at 8:57 pm Link to this comment

This is the only reasonable part of the message…

“...At the same time, if you, a manufacturer, continue building fleets of nonhybrid gas guzzlers, you are condemning yourself, your employees and shareholders…”

WHO has refused to build a vehicle of any size, that can only be operated with fossil fuel based energy? WHO is foolish enough to believe that the Auto Industry and the Oil Industry haven’t been in cohoots the past 3 decades, to make sure that you keep coughing up the money to create the Halliburton’s of the world?

WHEN has the American public ever had a CHOICE in the vehicles that they purchase? WHO is responsible for the fact that we have NO mass transit system?

(this was always my fathers greatest ‘rant’ when he was alive.) He’d go on and on about the fact that American auto makers simply built whatever they wanted to build and told us, take it or leave it. (we took it). This is why I guess my dad was the first one to ever buy a Japanese made vehicle, (according to him, they at least ASKED us what we wanted first, and then built to suit), and refused to ever buy another American made vehicle for the rest of his life. It’s impossible to claim that he was ‘anti-American’ but he sure was pissed about feeling forced to buy what he knew was less than what could be made available.

So yeah, we can blame the folks who buy guzzlers. (though I’ve never owned one). And now, we can make the new scapegoats China and India, since they’re finally beginning to use some of the same substance themselves. (though India has built cars that can operate on compressed air). But at the end of the day, the US still uses 3 times more than the rest of the world COMBINED in fossile fuel based energy, and produces that must more of the worlds environmental poisons.

So, what the candidate should be saying, should be directed to the corporate oligarchy, and telling them to come up with something better than what they have been. In other words, find another way to earn your profits. Figure out how to work the water, the wind, and the sun, to make all of this shit move. Otherwise, we’ll just all have to stay in place. Threatening us with overpriced gas so that Halliburton, and Exxon-Mobile, and Chevron can continue to take food out of our mouths until we starve to death, isn’t gonna do much other than that…starve us to death. At that point, I guess India and China can have it all.

So yeah, everytime we look back and say ‘if only we had done the right thing’, we should be acknowledging that ‘the right thing’ would have been to develope alternative techology using renewable energy sources, even though it wouldn’t have made such a few people, so very, very, very, wealthy.

And yeah, we would be in a different position today.

Report this

By Washington-Bubble, May 28, 2008 at 3:27 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Abutaza,
  I couldn’t agree more with your position what a canidate_should say.  The high prices of gas as well as goods in the US is, and has been putting significant strain on the the lower and middle classes and the US is now at a significant crossroad. We are past the point of given the choice of making a change, (as we could have started in the 70’s), instead we are at the point of having to make a change.  I’m a firm believer that the technolgy has been developed yet I feel that it has been shelved in favor of lobbyists and the goverment who are hooked in with oil.  Why thirty years later auto manufactures produce vehicles that get just about the same milage as their 70’s counterparts is beyond me, worse yet is that we, as a nation, demand that auto manufactures produce those vehicles.  If you tell me that after all these years that auto engineers have only been able to make marginal gains in mileage I’m not buying it.  What it comes down to is that we know, (at least I do), that Congress, Senate, the President, and lobbyists aren’t going to look out for you, the average citizen.  If change is going to occur, (it had better), than it takes all of us to change the ones that are making the decisions.  It was stated by someone in another country that their goverment was afraid of its citizens..in the US its the other way around and he felt it should not be this way. How true this is of other countries I’m unsure but I’m fairly confident that in the US our goverment isn’t worried about any sort of uprising like you see in Germany or France when an unpopular policy is attempted to be put in place.  I’m fairly low key but even I’m at my wits end watching this trainwreck we call our goverment at the moment.  It would probably bother me less if they didn’t feel the need to place its citizens squarely on the tracks.

Report this

By abutaza, May 28, 2008 at 4:14 am Link to this comment

A much better article on oil.  It is OUR problem, and here is a reasonable solution.  From today’s NYT (truncated due to 4000 character rule)


Truth or Consequences - Thomas Friedman


Imagine for a minute, just a minute, that someone running for president was able to actually tell the truth, the real truth, to the American people about what would be the best — I mean really the best — energy policy for the long-term economic health and security of our country. I realize this is a fantasy, but play along with me for a minute. What would this mythical, totally imaginary, truth-telling candidate say?

For starters, he or she would explain that there is no short-term fix for gasoline prices. Prices are what they are as a result of rising global oil demand from India, China and a rapidly growing Middle East on top of our own increasing consumption, a shortage of “sweet” crude that is used for the diesel fuel that Europe is highly dependent upon and our own neglect of effective energy policy for 30 years.

Cynical ideas, like the McCain-Clinton summertime gas-tax holiday, would only make the problem worse, and reckless initiatives like the Chrysler-Dodge-Jeep offer to subsidize gasoline for three years for people who buy its gas guzzlers are the moral equivalent of tobacco companies offering discounted cigarettes to teenagers.

I can’t say it better than my friend Tim Shriver, the chairman of Special Olympics, did in a Memorial Day essay in The Washington Post: “So Dodge wants to sell you a car you don’t really want to buy, that is not fuel-efficient, will further damage our environment, and will further subsidize oil states, some of which are on the other side of the wars we’re currently fighting. ... The planet be damned, the troops be forgotten, the economy be ignored: buy a Dodge.”

No, our mythical candidate would say the long-term answer is to go exactly the other way: guarantee people a high price of gasoline — forever.

This candidate would note that $4-a-gallon gasoline is really starting to impact driving behavior and buying behavior in way that $3-a-gallon gas did not. The first time we got such a strong price signal, after the 1973 oil shock, we responded as a country by demanding and producing more fuel-efficient cars. But as soon as oil prices started falling in the late 1980s and early 1990s, we let Detroit get us readdicted to gas guzzlers, and the price steadily crept back up to where it is today.

We must not make that mistake again. Therefore, what our mythical candidate would be proposing, argues the energy economist Philip Verleger Jr., is a “price floor” for gasoline: $4 a gallon for regular unleaded, which is still half the going rate in Europe today. Washington would declare that it would never let the price fall below that level. If it does, it would increase the federal gasoline tax on a monthly basis to make up the difference between the pump price and the market price.

To ease the burden on the less well-off, “anyone earning under $80,000 a year would be compensated with a reduction in the payroll taxes,” said Verleger. Or, he suggested, the government could use the gasoline tax to buy back gas guzzlers from the public and “crush them.”

But the message going forward to every car buyer and carmaker would be this: The price of gasoline is never going back down. Therefore, if you buy a big gas guzzler today, you are locking yourself into perpetually high gasoline bills. You are buying a pig that will eat you out of house and home. At the same time, if you, a manufacturer, continue building fleets of nonhybrid gas guzzlers, you are condemning yourself, your employees and shareholders to oblivion.

What a cruel thing for a candidate to say? I disagree. Every decade we look back and say: “If only we had done the right thing then, we would be in a different position today.”

Report this

By Escovado, May 26, 2008 at 5:15 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The United States has plenty of light sweet crude oil in our own territory, but Congress won’t allow us to drill for it.

We desperately need to build more oil refineries, but Congress won’t allow us to build them.

It is simple economics: no oil supply + rising world demand = high fuel prices.  Duh!

And by the way, within sight of the southern tip of Florida, Cuba has contracted the Chinese to drill for oil in the largest new reserve discovered in the Gulf of Mexico.  As always, Congress won’t let our oil companies drill there even though most of that reserve is in our territorial waters.  That’s oil WE should be getting for ourselves.

Stupid is as stupid does.

Report this

By jackpine savage, May 25, 2008 at 5:12 am Link to this comment

Hemp is just another one of those examples of our pigheadedness causing us to be left behind.  Canadian hemp farmers are now grinding the seeds and selling them in US health food stores…but US farmers are still not allowed to grow it.

The last major court case on industrial hemp farming was settled with the argument that guerrilla gardeners could hide their illicit marijuana plots inside industrial hemp fields…never mind that cannabis botany and the dictates of the marijuana commodity market would keep any marijuana grower at least 5 miles away from industrial hemp fields.

In Europe, they build houses and cars out of the stuff…hell, they even let you smoke it if you want to.

I hold little hope that the leaders of this country will remove their heads from their asses: exposure to the light and fresh air would probably kill them at this point. 

And here, here, Expat…intelligence is the KEY ingredient that we are missing.

Report this

By Washington-Bubble, May 24, 2008 at 12:35 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Expat wrote:
” would suggest that as long as they are using alcohol to extend their oil they are dependent on oil.  In addition; Brazil just discovered a huge find off their coast.  It’s deep water and expensive to exploit but it’s there and huge.  Brazil is not dependent on “imports”, but they are very dependent on oil.  My point was; we need to get off of the oil express.  So, what’s your point? “

  In the end that too is my point Expat.  But what brought me into this thread was trying to figure out why the US is investing so heavily into corn ethonal when it does not pack the same energy as sugarcane ethanol.  If the plan is to go with ethanol you may as well go for something that will produce_more energy than what your trying to replace or enhance.  Corned based ethanol is a failed plan before it leaves the drawing board…yet the US goverment is all for it.  What are the odds of that an who is driving that train? Surely no one looking out for the long term or the public…I’ll go out on a limb and say that money is involved though.  I agree that we should be looking for an alternative that takes oil out of the loop and I wouldn’t be surprised to hear that we already have such viable alternatives but they are being shelved at the moment per big business and the goverment request.  My point, at least in regards to ethanol, is if your at least going to push an ethanol plan, go with a plan that actually seems to be better than the fossil fuel that your replacing,(at least in terms of energy, we’ll leave out other issues such as pollutants for instance). 

  (As a side note I didn’t see on your last post a “reply to” link.  Not sure why that is but I just replied to another in the thread.)

Report this

By Conservative Yankee, May 24, 2008 at 10:07 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Nabih Ammari, May 24 at 8:12 am #
(Unregistered commenter)
Re:“Paying for War at the Pump”

The devaluation of the dollar relative to the “credit worthiness” of the Government is a defacto tax. since the devaluation has almost reached 50% since 2001, that is a large amount of wealth transferring to the government. It is the equivalent of burning to ashes a 20 dollar bill, presented to you against a 40 dollar debt.

since (by many accounts) gas would sell for 2 2001 dollars, that gives the government $2 in credit for every gallon of gas sold using a dollar base.

Since US motorists purchase 388.6 million gallons per day (assumedly using devalued dollars) that translates into almost 777 Million dollars worth of monetary credit every day. Estimates of the daily costs of the Iraq war range from 199 million to 364 million a day. So theoretically the government COULD finance the war from gas sales alone, and have enough left over for a luxurious hide-out in South America for all these criminals after the war, and this administration have faded into history.

If people truly understood the ramifications of a “floating dollar” they would tar and feather this bunch of crooks!  Unfortunately, those who understand this level of theft are often the self same folks who profit from the float. Folks like Hill-the-business-shill, token, and G.I.Joe.

Report this

By Nabih Ammari, May 24, 2008 at 9:12 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Re:“Paying for War at the Pump” by Robert Scheer.

It seems to me,just reading the above Re I have the impression that the huge increase in prices of gasoline drivers of vehicles pay currently at the pumps is for the sole purpose of financing the war.Of course,such an impression is not true.The war in Iraq is being financed by a huge debt borrowed from foreign countries.I wish that Mr. Robert Scheer has chosen a more appropriate title,reflecting the actuality of where all that huge increases in the prices of gasoline really go to.

The above Re has other holes in it,As subjected to scrutiny may not hold water.
Sincerely,
Nabih Ammari
An Independent in Ohio.

Report this

By Expat, May 24, 2008 at 8:04 am Link to this comment

I would suggest that as long as they are using alcohol to extend their oil they are dependent on oil.  In addition; Brazil just discovered a huge find off their coast.  It’s deep water and expensive to exploit but it’s there and huge.  Brazil is not dependent on “imports”, but they are very dependent on oil.  My point was; we need to get off of the oil express.  So, what’s your point?  We as an oil importing country are essentially screwed by the speculative market and the speculators, so as long as we continue this path to our own destruction, there must be an alternative.  The alternative is to get off of the oil addiction.  What’s your problem with that?

Report this

By GoldenT, May 24, 2008 at 7:56 am Link to this comment

This week’s Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee hearing featuring testimony from well-known hedge fund operator Michael McMasters revealed a “London Loophole” at the core of excessive speculation causing rising energy prices.

Supply is not the issue. Rather, it is a deranged European aristocracy backing the filthy British Empire attacking the Posterity of the American Republic through the fraud of free markets (much as has been the case for, oh, 250 years now). Of course, having a bunch of Tory lackeys in the White House does not help.

Other than CNBC and LaRouche, scarcely a word has been reported about this week’s historic Senate hearing!

This, I believe, is the bigger scandal…

Report this

By Washington-Bubble, May 24, 2008 at 7:23 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Expat, Research how Brazil accomplished this and how they are not dependent on oil.  As it has already been accomplished by another country I’d have to tend to disagree with you that this would not get us off of oil dependency.  What the US has lost is a our problem solving techniques..or perhaps we haven’t really lost them as much as they’ve been bought out by our friends in Washington by industries that could care less of the results of their decisions effect the whole of its citizens. That is probably more the case…

Report this

By Expat, May 24, 2008 at 7:22 am Link to this comment

I would add: This country is so averse to “hemp” that you would think it’s a terrorist plot.  We’re so fucking stupid we don’t deserve to live.  But I do hope we survive…........maybe…...

Report this

By Expat, May 24, 2008 at 6:52 am Link to this comment

Fat chance.  Locked and loaded is part of the solution.  But intelligence is the key ingredient and there, we are lacking.  Make sure you don’t get too comfortable; it screws up diligence something awful.

Report this
PatrickHenry's avatar

By PatrickHenry, May 24, 2008 at 6:38 am Link to this comment

Another alternative that for some reason got cast by the wayside.  I think is also could be used for paper, animal feed, fiber for clothing and oil not to mention the pharmacutical value.

I hope the leaders of this country get their heads out of their asses and utilize the natural alternatives before us.

Report this

By hippy pam, May 24, 2008 at 5:49 am Link to this comment

Sheeple…that is what we are…we just keep on keeping on….and the rich get richer…and the SUV drivers and the MOTERHOME drivers just keep driving..
and they go to YellowStone to see the sites…or Up North to camp…etc.etc.etc.-WE NEED TO STRIKE..
STOP BUYING-STOP SHOPPING-You will not be any different than MANY I KNOW..except THE ONES I KNOW JUST CAN’T AFFORD GAS-HEALTH INSURANCE-FOOD-let alone a car to get any where.Like my friend said to me the other day-“Sure I saw the ad for the VACATION AT YELLOWSTONE-But I will NEVER SEE IT-I can’t afford the trip.”
Profit also feeds price…They KNOW THE SHEEPLE WILL PAY THE PRICES THEY CHARGE CUZ SHEEPLE DO NOT WANT TO GIVE UP THE LIFESTYLE THEY ARE ACCUSTOMED TO.

Report this

By Expat, May 24, 2008 at 3:39 am Link to this comment

While this is all well and good; how does alcohol get us off our oil dependency?  The solution is not cheaper oil; however, we are paying the price for not heeding the warnings of the 70’s.  Alcohol substitution is the same as a dieter switching from ice cream to an artificial non-fat substitute.  It doesn’t really solve the problem does it?  Until we face the daunting task of changing our behavior this remains a game of smoke and mirrors.

Report this

By Washington-Bubble, May 23, 2008 at 3:51 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Thanks Gang for a little more insight as to the possibilities of using sugarcane.  I can see Cyrena point on the hard labor aspect which would have to be factored in but what troubles me more,(and why should it as its nothing we haven’t seen before), is that the deciding factor isn’t research, science, or what benefits the masses in the long term,(even the short term).  Its all based on what is dictated by lobbyists which is a sad commentary of the workings of the US political system.  Granted its always been this way but with the situation that we as not only a nation, but globally we all face you’d think that for once the politically system could break from its usual way of dealing with issues.  Even sadder I suppose is that tax payers shrug this off as a “what are you going to do”  situation.  I’d take a guess that if “American Idol” was canceled there would be rioting in the streets yet real world issues don’t even raise and eyebrow.

Report this

By cyrena, May 23, 2008 at 1:59 pm Link to this comment

Ah Fadel,

You made me chuckle with your post. I was dumbstruck myself, to discover this post from Howard.

Meantime…Cuba is an EXCELLENT choice!! I’ve often considered it myself. Great minds think alike, eh?

How’s your Spanish?

Report this

By Fadel Abdallah, May 23, 2008 at 9:20 am Link to this comment

Howard, this is the most sensible post you’ve ever written. I am even surprised about your honesty in giving Brazil the credit about sugar ethanol. When I first saw your name there at the top, I thought first, that you’re going to brag about another of Israel’s achievements and blessings it brought to this miserable world! This is so because never before you have posted anything that does not relate to Israel. That’s why I consider this post of yours of a very special value.

Forgive my sarcasm! But, as a Zionist expert and propagandist, I really want to know from you how Israel, without oil, has managed to run its third or fourth biggest ranking military machine in the world without oil! One little thing I know is that it receives a good part of its oil supplies from Iran, which it’s badly etching to attack and destroy! Are there concrete plans for Israel to physically occupy Iran, to at least maintain the oil flowing?!

And by the way, have you happened to read the joke about Moses (peace be upon him) lamenting after talking to a “Bush” that he was lost in the desert for forty years, to end up in the only piece of land in the vast Middle East that has no oil?! I’ll be happy to repost it for you if you missed that!

Having said this, I am really happy to see that we are seeing eye-to-eye for once, especially the statement you made in your last paragraph.

And thank you also for informing me that there is a “sugar lobby.” Is sugar-rich Cuba part of that lobby?! I hope so, because since I can’t go back to my Israeli-occupied hometown, Cuba would be one of the top choices of mine for retirement in few years! I know they have an excellent health care system. And I always been an admirer of Fidel Castro. And now with their sugar-rich economy, it might be the paradise on earth I’ve been searching for all my life!

Shalom, cousin!

Report this

By jackpine savage, May 23, 2008 at 7:58 am Link to this comment

To sum up some of the comments below.  The US doesn’t have the climate for sugar cane, what sweeteners aren’t made from corn come from beet sugar. (Caro, MI is the home of Karo syrup…big beet farming region.)

Cyrena is also right that working a cane plantation is nothing that anyone really wants to do.  It has environmental positives because of its habit, but those positives make make for manual labor negatives.

Corn was chosen by lobbyists.  What we need to remember is that ethanol is just alcohol.  You can make alcohol out of any plant substance.  Drinkable varieties need to come from edible plants, but the denatured alcohol you rub on a cut generally comes from wood chips. 

If your stock has a low sugar content, some form of sugar must be added.  That’s why sugar cane packs so much punch.  Corn has a fairly high sugar content too, but not that high.  The other reason is that more of the plant can be used with sugar cane…so the alcohol yield/acre is much higher.

In other words, we could make ethanol out of any crop if we’re willing to add sugar to it.  So we might choose a crop with a large yield/biomass and add low grade beet sugars.  Think hemp, perennial grasses, etc.  The agri lobby won’t stand for those solutions because those plants have very little profit for the agribusinesses.  They don’t want farmers making money off of crops that don’t need fertilizers, herbicides, and pesticides (or GM seeds)...that’s where their profits are.

Report this

By jackpine savage, May 23, 2008 at 7:46 am Link to this comment

Aside from the clearing of rainforest to plant sugar plantations, you’re dead on.

There are other benefits…at least with sugar cane.  Sugar cane is generally a no-till crop: this keeps carbon in the soil.  It is also such a fast grower that fertilizer use is minimal and its growth shades out competing weeds before they get established…hence little use for targeted herbicides.

Corn ethanol is the wet dream of big agri, it meshes perfectly with the vertical integration of Monsanto, ADM, etc.  It also gives them room for GM crops that sometimes get backlashed when grown for human consumption.

Report this

By cyrena, May 23, 2008 at 7:02 am Link to this comment

Just a thought here…you might wanna check out who it is that is doing the labor in Brazil on their sugarcane producing, (and it is HARD labor) and find out much these sugar plantation slaves DO NOT get paid for their hard work.

The reason the US doesn’t grow that much sugar anymore is because they had to give up the plantations with their free slave labor. When you actually start paying somebody to farm the stuff, it’s not that cheap.

Report this

By Howard, May 23, 2008 at 6:30 am Link to this comment

Brazil, which is a country almost our size has done it using sugar ethanol.  Done what. Becoming energy free of imported oil.  We can grow it here or grow sugar beets which will also work.  Or import it from Brazil or countries in South or central America. Corn ethanol will not do it. Just a fraud to set up corn refining plants here in this country at taxpayer expense.  It will not lower gas prices any more than 10 cents a gallon.  Sugar ethanol will head it back to a $1.00/ gallon, which it is in Brazil.

But the sugar lobby and the oil lobby do NOT Want us to use or buy sugar ethanol from Brazil or import it from any of our neighbors in our hemisphere.  So they keep a sky high tariff on our importing sugar. No we should keep the Saudis and the Mideast in business.

Documentaries on Discovery channel and the History channel + articles in the NY Times have shown how Brazil using sugar ethanol has done it Sugar has 30 times the punch, mileage, and energy of corn. Using corn will also increase costs of our food.

All this shows how very powerful our oil and farm (sugar ) lobbies are in keeping sugar out with a tariff that helps those businesses obscenely.  Imagine.

Report this
Paul_GA's avatar

By Paul_GA, May 23, 2008 at 6:19 am Link to this comment

Here’s the link I spoke of; just copy and paste if you need to:

http://www.mcclatchydc.com/117/story/35360.html

Report this

By Washington-Bubble, May 22, 2008 at 8:45 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Paul_GA wrote:
“So the corn farming people have lots of clout in Washington City”

Paul, if indeed this is what it comes down to, and no, I would not be shocked if it did, it’s a sad commentary that our political system would support the corn lobby over a possible plan that actually has the potential to produce more energy than what the corn would produce.  It’s sad in the sense that at this stage of the game we must do something yet our fine elected officials pander to the short sighted goal of the lobbyists over possible long term solutions for the masses, (which technically the elected officials are suppose to be representing).  My thought isn’t that sugarcane ethanol is the answer to the oil issue, I am just questioning at what point do we, elected officials as well as the masses see that we need to really look at alternatives and this may involve actually going against what a lobbyist wants.  As an aside isn’t there enough open space in the US for corn and sugarcane?  I mean, aren’t we presently paying for farmers_not to grow crops?  *sigh*  Something has to change…

Report this
Paul_GA's avatar

By Paul_GA, May 22, 2008 at 8:17 pm Link to this comment

I recall reading some time ago, WB, that there isn’t that much sugar grown in the USA; that corn provides nearly all of the sweetener used in American-made soft drinks, candy, junk food like Twinkies, etc. So the corn farming people have lots of clout in Washington City; thus, corn for ethanol. That’s also how they keep Brazilian sugar-cane-based ethanol out of this country.

I clean out my history files at intervals, but if I can think to find the article again, I’ll post the link.

Report this

By Washington-Bubble, May 22, 2008 at 5:03 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

This may be a litle off topic but relates to original post. Brazil is producing ethanol from sugarcane which produces 9 times the energy that a gallon of gas produces and has been doing this for some years,(They started on this plan in the 70’s..they wisely saw the handwriting on the wall). How did the US arrive at using corn for ethanol?  Is it purely that we can’t grow sugar cane here?  Was it a plan put out there by someone that would like to see a fuel alternative to gas fail? (I’m skepical of any idea that comes from the goverment..I’ve seen this too many times in goverment over the years).  When a country such as Brazil is not dependent on foreign oil wouldn’t one look at how they achieved that when looking at alternative fuel sources for their own country?  How did we get sold on corn to produce ethanol and why is the goverment so eager to support this idea?

Report this

By Political Insurgent, May 22, 2008 at 3:45 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

...Plenty of that go around, I might add.

Normally I like your articles, Robert, but I can’t really agree with this one. Why should Saudi Arabia supply our oil addiction just because of political politeness? I’m glad they screwed Bush over, this could be just the kick in the ass the US needs to evolve away from using oil. If only all the other countries we import oil from could take the same route.

[fantasy]An oil blockade against the US, what a marvelous idea. Not only would it severely cripple our economy, curbing civilian AND military transportation, but it could force a no-doubt panicked and desperate US into less of a “guns ‘n bombs if you don’t do what we want” stance on everybody. For once, there might be a little peace in the world without the US meddling in everyone’s piddling affairs.

And all because those silk swaddled hypocrites in Arabia decided to pull a Bush and be selfish. Finally Saudi arrogance will do some good in the world! And to add insult to injury, they’ve got all kinds of US sponsored crap down there from Whoppers to ordnance. Yippi-i-o-ki-yay and Alhamdulillah, SUCKAAAAS![/endfantasy]

But let’s take a detour back to reality. Whenever the oil dries up, which should be rather soon, I’m sure this article will seem quite hysterical. If we’re sitting in the 23rd century and still haven’t evolved beyond coal and fossil fuel, I can’t really say I’d be surprised or sympathetic towards anyone except the hapless citizens who have endure the result of political BS. The US, Saudi Arabia and Israel can go suck some lemons. Maybe when the oil dries up they can make some fuel out of their lemon flavored spit and sell THAT for a couple bucks.

Report this
PatrickHenry's avatar

By PatrickHenry, May 22, 2008 at 2:44 pm Link to this comment

Another Bush endrun to justify our occupation in Iraq?  Raise the gas price.

Bush was buying 70,000 bbls per day at the prevailing rate for the strategic petroleum reserve (SPR), it was canceled by congress.

I was under the impression that oil companies were to cede oil to as royalties to the SPR for drilling on public land.  I wonder who the oil companies pay and how much do they pay for that oil taken from public lands, public coastal areas, the gulf of Mexico.

South Africa produces it own oil from coal for $35 per barrel and their coal contains more sulfur than US coal.  Extensive tar sands similar to the ones in Canada have been revealed in the Western U.S. why hasn’t the U.S. or the oil companies acted on this?

I guess another severe recession or depression will have to occur before our corrupt government acts.

Report this

By KYJurisDoctor, May 22, 2008 at 2:36 pm Link to this comment

... KILLING US, silently!

Report this

By Dr. Knowitall, PhD, PhD, May 22, 2008 at 1:49 pm Link to this comment

You’re absolutely right.  You can’t on the one hand say you’re for making money, for capitalism and for making profit under the American system and then, on the other, damn the oil companies for making record profits. 

All you have to do, if you believe in the system, is call your stock broker and invest in oil.  Too bad if it now appears a little too late but, take heart, no matter what a share costs now, it will turn a profit for a long time in the future. 

Those who don’t want to play the game, stop using oil.

Report this

By abutaza, May 22, 2008 at 1:46 pm Link to this comment

That visceral dislike of a people you do not know….

..has led you to write a very sloppy article, loaded with faulty reasoning, and enormous omissions.

Consider “Saudi ingratitude.”  Should they, and could they increase production 50%, and postpone the day of reckoning for another few years?  Or are they like that proverbial friend who takes the car keys away from their drunken friend?  Yes, the oil companies and the Wall Street speculators are picking up some rather large crumbs from the table, but the central issue was never mentioned – an enormous omission:  China and India, and all the other “Third World” countries who want to achieve First World consumption standards. How are they to be accommodated?  Ever since the first warning shots in the ‘70’s, the world’s #1 energy glutton has strongly resisted any rationale curtailment of our consumption as well as the development of renewable energy resources to replace that which is not renewable.  A President, hat in hand, “going to meet the man,” is not a solution.  Apparently the only answer is for the “gods of the market place” to perform their magic, and, as we say in war, sorry about the collateral damage.

The war in Iraq is another matter, one that we both strongly oppose, but linking the increase in gasoline directly to the war is equally faulty.  It might rate a 10% causation of the cost.

Mr. Sheer, you write some great columns, and usually I find myself in admiration, and total agreement.  How about tossing this faulty draft in the can, overcome that gutra phobia, and speak to the central issues.  Your fellow columnist, Thomas Friedman, who I usually disagree with about 50% of the time was oh so right when he suggested a $1 a gallon tax, that would be used to improve America’s energy position, back when gasoline was $2 a gallon, amazingly only 3-4 years ago.

Report this

By G Davis, May 22, 2008 at 12:47 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

All this by people who have totaly ruined the country in their business as usual rape of the Serfs.And in the end the Stupid Americans will vote Mccain in with their brain washed right to vote sham even though it’s fixed! Hopefully by some miracle somebody will get in that will chamge the policies of this Neocon trainwreck of America and put this failed country on the path of healing before it’s too late,and it probably already is!But all the while supporting some fraud called Isreal that stole a peoples country and refuse to let them live backed by American funded terrorism against women and children by Blackmail from some scam that guarenteed funds for life,by some fabricated sham! Since there is probably no end in sight for the Neocon profit maker war on terrorism.And the thanks from our Democratic human rights abuser terrorism funders Saudi Arabia,To continue to shaft Americans that fought to let them keep their Oil fields.The only thing I hope for is that if we attack Iran,They do indeed have nuclear weapons,and will use them against Isreal and the other Arab western puppets!Mabye then the pchycos that lead this failure country will see what they have started in order to make Billionaires more money!And if you remember when Clinton was President it was aknowledged that SS-20s had indeed rolled into Iran from Azerbahnzhani.

Report this

By Howard, May 22, 2008 at 12:35 pm Link to this comment

yeah Man, and Israel causes the darn sun to come up in the east, too.  Rediculous is right !

Report this

By ocjim, May 22, 2008 at 11:47 am Link to this comment

Seventy percent of Americans want out of Iraq. So why is grandpa McCain still a viable candidate?

He is Bush III and look what Bush II has done for us. We seem to forget the connection between oil and global warming, for example.
For almost a decade now, the world has suffered chaos and environmental indecision due to pillaging, imperialistic American leadership. Furthermore, we have been saddled with irresponsible oil-men running the executive branch of our government.

But actually we can’t say that Congress has done nothing.

Congress passed the 2005 Energy Policy Act, mandating 7.5 billion gallons of ethanol be produced by 2012. Corn farmers were ecstatic, and promptly produced a record 6.6 billion gallons last year. The Energy Act of 2007 increased the mandate to 9 billion gallons by 2008, and ramped it up to 36 billion gallons by 2022.

So, isn’t that good? Well, unfortunately that is a big part of why food prices have gone through the roof. You remember we mentioned that grain prices were doubling and tripling.

Ninety-five percent of ethanol is produced from corn. Seventeen percent of the U.S. corn crop went to ethanol. Furthermore, producing biofuels increases pesticide use, is inefficient, does not prevent climate change and competes for land that could be used to grow food for humans. Because our government subsidizes the growth of corn for ethanol, guess which use gets precedence.

Our farm-state representatives did realize that ethanol would get them re-elected, but did not consider that growing corn for ethanol uses more resources, including natural-gas produced fertilizer, a finite resource.

So where does this all leave us? The global market answer is higher prices for commodities, food shortages, and a looming recession.

Some experts are already looking at the prospects for a new world order with resource-rich countries having the advantage.
The major energy-surplus states are few. Ten oil-rich states possess over 82 percent of the world’s proven oil reserves. Their rank by volume: Saudi Arabia, Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, the United Arab Emirates, Venezuela, Russia, Libya, Kazakhstan and Nigeria. Three countries have the bulk of natural gas. Russia, Iran and Qatarharbor have almost 56 percent of the world supply.

So who can cash in on the dramatic rise in global energy prices? In 2005 the oil-exporting countries collected an estimated $970 billion from importing countries. Giant investment accounts are filled with yens, dollars, and euros to be used for acquiring valuable assets around the world, including US corporations, buildings, and infrastructure.

What are we doing? Our answer is to spend $12 billion a month in Iraq, supposedly for sweet deals for American oil companies.

The utter stupidity of Iraq is all around us and McCain, even a bigger chicken hawk than Bush, is considered a viable candidate!

Report this

By Ray the investor, May 22, 2008 at 11:31 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The message that the witch hunt against the oil companies the democrats send, is that it wrong to invest in America.  Now that the democrats pass a farm bill that pays the farmers to keep food prices high yet persacute oil companies for making a profit.
I do not understand except that the ag industry gives more money to democrats then rep. Sounds like Mexico to me.
Where you can buy your congressman.

Report this

By felicity, May 22, 2008 at 11:18 am Link to this comment

Gas is 12 cents per gallon in Venezuela.  Amazing what can happen when government holds the reins of corporations.

Report this

By wildflower, May 22, 2008 at 11:06 am Link to this comment

Re: What If?

Imagine how much better off we would be today if GM’s EV1 electric car program had not been axed.  Technology and resources would have increased and a majority of consumers would be driving hybrids by now.  Our environment would be cleaner and greedy oil tycoons would not have the power to hold consumers hostage at the gas pumps.  With fewer greedy oil tycoons around to manipulate elections and manufacture conflicts, individuals like Bush would not have been elected and there would be fewer wars and conflicts in the Middle East.  With fewer wars and conflicts in the Middle East, our country’s resources and tax dollars could have been applied toward more important and beneficial things.

Report this

By Moe, May 22, 2008 at 10:52 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Stupid! Iraq is pumping now more oil then what it did under Saddam.

Day 1: Bush’s Fault
Day 2: Iraq War
Day 3: Halliburton
Day 4: Bush
Day 5: Oil Companies
Day 6: Congress takes recess
Day 20: Bush’s War
Day 21: Cheney
Day 22: Oil Companies
Day 23: Don’t dig for more oil
Day 24: Oil companies make to much money
Day 24: ????

Pelosi, Reid and all other Dems are a bunch of fools if not hypocrites.
Click on the following link and take a laugh.

http://www.house.gov/pelosi/press/releases/April06/Rubberstamp.html

Report this

By jackpine savage, May 22, 2008 at 8:51 am Link to this comment

Has anyone seen the new Oil and Gas Industry ad campaign?  I caught it in this week’s Economist.  The full page ad points out that oil profits are really our profits, because so many of us own stock in the industry through mutual funds and 401K’s, etc.

So there you have it…it isn’t Saudi Arabia’s fault; it isn’t the Bush administration’s fault; it isn’t Detroit’s fault; it isn’t Big Oil’s fault.  It’s your fault. (Since i don’t participate in Wall Street, it isn’t my fault, hence “your” not “our”.)

If your retirement savings is built upon oil profits, what right do you have to complain about pump prices?  Do you even know if you are a part owner of the companies that are involved?  If you found out that you were profiting from this situation, would you divest yourself of those investments?  Will you take the time to find out?

I understand that it’s no fun to accept responsibility, and i know that the American Way dictates that it is always someone else’s fault…but someone has to take responsibility sometime.

Report this

By Dr. Knowitall, PhD, PhD, May 22, 2008 at 5:58 am Link to this comment

Even as I write our beloved congress is sitting down with Big Oil to get them to explain why Americans might be complaining about the high price of gasoline. 

WTF? 

It’s the “American Way” to make a profit.  Congress has been largely instrumental in enabling Big Biz to max their bottom lines for their shareholders and CEO’s.  And throw in a little extra in the form of tax breaks and subsidies, all at workers’ expense. 

Now, because they “sense” that working class people are “feeling” a litte “discouraged” about the cost of filling their tanks, and they want to “appear” concerned and “pro-working class”, they invite Big Oil in for a “scolding.”  Do you think after the hearing, they give each of the reps a voucher to fill up their tanks at the local Mobil station, since they already had the “lube job?”

You gotta love this country!

Report this

By Conservative Yankee, May 22, 2008 at 5:19 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Of course the price of oil is related to “the market”

AND, guess what. the market favors the seller.

China and India are set to eclipse the US in oil purchases probably in 5 to 10 years.

Oil now has many more uses than simple refined gasoline. Here’s a fact you won’t hear often, If ExxonMobil gave the gas away for COST of development and production, a gallon of self serve Regular would cost 7 to 8 cents less than it does this morning.  The BIG oil companies do a volume business. Their profit is in increased sales.

and if there are indeed financial Illuminati, they are probably betting on the small retail oil market rather than “big oil”.

Report this

By Jeremy Sandiego, May 21, 2008 at 11:32 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

http://www.americahappens.com

Report this

By cyrena, May 21, 2008 at 8:21 pm Link to this comment

“What happens when the cost of essential items exceed the income we’re able to create and bring in?”

Well Joe Politico, this has been happening to me and several million others for the past several decades.

So, I guess what we’ve been waiting for, is for the question to be put to the middle and upper classes. Good timing. I guess they’ll finally have to look around.

Meantime, those several million others of us are already pretty experienced at surviving without essentials that our incomes don’t cover. Maybe everybody will just have to move into their factories, or whatever other plantations they live on. If they’re lucky, the Fascists will allow them to keep working, and maybe throw them a bread crumb or two from time to time. (The Stalin regime was never too good about feeding the workers in his concentration camps).

Still, I guess it’s better than being exterminated, just for the hell of it.

Report this

By Shallel, May 21, 2008 at 7:33 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Beware another false 9/11 to nuke Iran!

You know the ol’ 10 Kton Nuke? Portland? Seattle? Galveston? Sears Tower?
(Recently acquired by Larry Silverstein.)

Maybe they’ll just simulate a nuke, like the simulated the jetliner crashes on 9/11.

You fell for it then, will you fall for it now?

What do you think the price at the pump will be then?

Investigate, Impeach, Incarcerate!

Report this

By Joe Politico, May 21, 2008 at 6:28 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The price of oil continues to rise, as does the cost of gas and food, while the dollar continues to decline and what we’re able to actually afford shrinks.

Working longer and harder isn’t the correct solution because all we seem to do is still generate and produce a finite amount of income.

What happens when the cost of essential items exceed the income we’re able to create and bring in?

Already around the globe there have been riots over Being able to access afordable food and fuel costs.

While I’m sure unlimited profit at the expense of others is what motivates some individuals, but it is not what the majority of people want and desire.

And while I don’t have all the anwsers, I recognize the rising costs of essential items can only get so high before there is corrective action.

There is no need for riots over food and fuel when a better logistical process can be put into place that gets affordable food and fuel to everyone everywhere.

Report this

By 5 dancing shlomos, May 21, 2008 at 5:30 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

price of oil is result of the aggressive war. the price of oil is due to the speculators. the price of oil is a result of america’s aggressive threats to iran and venezuela. the price of oil is due to the worthless dollar. the price at the pump also has to do with gouging by the oil cos.

the price does NOT have to do with the saudis.

Report this

By jbart, May 21, 2008 at 4:52 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

There are several partial solutions that are both viable and,through proper planning/commitment,will help to offset the increases caused by the supply vs. demand causality.
We have “enormous” amounts of “refinable” oil in Alaska and an “already paid for&constructed;” pipeline set up for delivery back to the “other” 48 states. We have not yet started to extract and transport this “owned” natural resource. But, a few questions comes to mind. What are we waiting for? When can the American taxpayer expect to get the benefit of the tax dollars allocated for this initiative? This article, if referenced, may help support these questions but, as the state of our country is starting to drain my energy. So I am left to simply point you all to the additional information on the subject, all you need to do is just GOOGLE the subject. The link offered is intended to just WHET the appetites of those parties interested in the subject. If you’re one of those interested parties, there’s a lot of more detailed info available to you. Here’s the link:

http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,944310,00.html

Report this
PatrickHenry's avatar

By PatrickHenry, May 21, 2008 at 3:14 pm Link to this comment

I’ve heard the estimates and if you figure air cap, tanks, humvees, helo’s, and the numerous flotillas just piddling around burning fuel oil, 66 gallons per soldier per day sounds right.

66 x 140,000 = 9,240,000 gallons per day in this folly.  I bet whoever is selling the POL (petroleum/oil/lubricants) to the military is most likely charging rates far above anything we’ve seen yet.

Ron Paul was right when he said that the U.S. leaving Iraq and closing the majority of overseas bases would cause a drop in oil prices of over $20 per barrel and that was when oil was $80/bbl.

We need to pull the plug on Iraq and bring our troops home, the sooner the better.

Report this

By TadK, May 21, 2008 at 3:05 pm Link to this comment

I see you have been reading the scripture of the finincial illuminati.  Impressive analysis.

-

Why isn’t the price of oil related to the market for oil?

Report this

By Conservative Yankee, May 21, 2008 at 2:25 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The Saudis are NOT the problem, neither are the Oil companies They both deserve to make a profit… when is the last time you gave away something of great value to a stranger who really doesn’t like or understand you?

1.) We get most of our imported oil from Canada. 
2.) Shale oil is harder to refine than “light sweet crude”
3.) The Wall Street speculators are pushing the price of oil up.
4.) Due to speculation the price of oil on the world market is +$20
5.) the value of the dollar is dropping due to OUR policy on shifting currency. This means staples (like oil and imported food) will increase in price directly proportional to the dollar’s drop.

Report this

By Carl Olson, May 21, 2008 at 1:59 pm Link to this comment

The ghastly price of Iraq occupation is the skyrocketed price of gas.  By occupying Iraq, the U.S. has taken over all government functions, including the membership in oil cartel OPEC.

The Bush Administration has enthusiastically supported OPEC’s price-raising oil production cutbacks ever since the occupation in March 2003.  The U. S. has cut back oil production in Iraq below what Hussein produced.

Right now both Republicans and Democrats in Congress support this OPEC help by the U.S.  This includes Senators McCain, Obama, and Clinton.

Who will speak up for the suffering publics of the world?

Report this

By dale Headley, May 21, 2008 at 1:29 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The only problem with Robert Scheer’s analysis is that it assumes that Bush is not, in actuality, in a conspiracy with the Saudis to keep the price of oil high.  Why?  Because the oil companies want it that way and George Bush is a puppet of the oil companies.  It is one explanation (other than ineptitude) for why Bush objected so weakly to the high oil price.  It also explains why, immediately after the 9-11 attacks, the only folks allowed to fly in the U.S. were members of the Saudi royal family and delegation.

Report this

By cyrena, May 21, 2008 at 1:19 pm Link to this comment

Fadel, we’ve talked about numbers 1 and 2, and that makes sense to me. I’d never even considered number 3, about that whole thing being a smokescreen, but it does make sense.

Because, in spite of it all, The Bush Dynasty is making money hand over fist from our misery. And, they’ve been in bed with the Saudis for decades.

There’s a reason why it’s usually Dick Cheney that has these visits with the King and the others, especially since the moron bush II is now ‘in charge’. Before, it was always bush I who made these visits and arranged these deals.

That said, bush II being as stupid as the puppet King was probably just following Dick Cheney’s plan anyway.

Report this

By cyrena, May 21, 2008 at 1:05 pm Link to this comment

Ya know, this is exactly correct. They do this stuff everytime. It annoys the hell out of me too. I can take everything except the insanity.

So, while I’ve conscientiously avoided the ‘I told you so’ for so very long, I think that’s gonna become my new mantra. Bush says if you say enough times, (typical fascist technique) it’ll sink in.

Or, more specifically, they figure they can create new realities by just repeating the same propaganda over and over again. So maybe we should just go on the defensive, and start repeating the truth over and over again, and maybe that’ll work.

If not, I’ll just keep saying “I told you so” even if it only makes me feel good. Gonna be assailed either way anyhow.

Report this
psmealey's avatar

By psmealey, May 21, 2008 at 12:47 pm Link to this comment

Yep, it’s gonna get worse, and most of us still are not in any way prepared to weather that epidemic. Heads buried for far too long, or otherwise worried about the chickens that Rev. Wright already told you were coming home to roost.

Didn’t believe him, eh?

The worst part about all of this is that the jerks on the right (and the lumpen idiots who support them) will find a way to blame the liberals for it all when it comes crashing down.  So, not only do we get assailed for being cranks, conspiracy theorists or America Haters when we suggest things that are difficult to hear, when things go into the toilet, they’ll say we were the ones in control of it the whole time.

Report this

By Conservative Yankee, May 21, 2008 at 11:33 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

“And how did the Saudis thank us? Just check the price of oil, which has increased more than sixfold since 9/11.

“Excuse me?”  The Saudis did what??? 

What about the unregulated speculators on Wall Street bidding up the price of crude for their own profit?
What about the laws which now make a new US refinery cost in excess of one BILLION dollars?
What about the fact that OUR energy policy is non-existent?
Did you consider that now that we’ve used up all the readily obtainable oil that new oil (from deep wells, shale, and hydroforced) is more expensive because it is harder to extract?

The US population is like the drunk who says it’s the government’s fault he’s out of money, out of work, and homeless. 

Back in the 1950’s we pumped the Texas and Oklahoma fields dry so we could avoid paying the Saudis and the Venezuelans $2 a barrel for their oil. I remember filling the 30 gallon gas tank on a Mercury Turnpike cruiser for just   under $10, and that was high test! The 430 cid Mercury got just under 15 MPG, The Oldsmobile Holiday (394 CID did just a bit better. Cars with good gas mileage like the Nash Metro (30MPG), Kaiser(@3MPG), and Studebaker(28-30MPG depending on model) fell by the wayside, not fast enough, big enough, or sporting the 400lbs of Chrome of the Buick “Estate Wagon” (12MPG)

So while it is easy to blame some faceless Arab in some far away universe, a closer, more appropriate villain might be observed in your bathroom mirror.

Report this

By hark, May 21, 2008 at 10:20 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

And the cable tv media pundits talk about nothing but the horse race between Obama and Hillary, as if nothing were going on in the world but this, and as if the race were serving no purpose other than for the amusement of these pundits who get paid millions to prattle about it.

Meanwhile the world crashes and burns.

Talk about Bush living in a bubble.  These people are unbelievable.

Report this

By Fadel Abdallah, May 21, 2008 at 9:42 am Link to this comment

“The other winners in this folly have been the oil kingdoms that Hussein periodically threatened, led by the Saudi royal family. Seizing upon the opportunity presented by the 9/11 attacks, Bush knocked off not the Saudis, who had produced Osama bin Laden and 15 of his hijacker minions, but rather the royal family’s sworn enemy in Iraq, who had absolutely nothing do with 9/11.”

“And how did the Saudis thank us? Just check the price of oil, which has increased more than sixfold since 9/11. On Friday, Bush went to dine at Saudi King Abdullah’s bizarrely opulent horse farm and pleaded for an increase in oil production, but to no avail.”
========================================
I am sadly surprised to the point of shock that Robert Scheer, who I admire and see eye-to-eye with on most issues, can be so wrong and shallow when it comes to certain issues, particularly in this piece the section he wrote about Saudi Arabia, part of which I quoted above. I beg to disagree with the Saudi part of his article in the following way:

1. Firstly, I need to say that there is nothing I hate most, beside Bush himself, than the ruling families in Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Jordan and lately Egypt and Syria. Even six graders in the Arab-Muslim world know that these regimes are a big part of the problems facing the Middle East, particularly because they are seen as puppets of the United States imperialists and are also in bed with the so much hated colonialist Israel. Some public statements that might suggest these regimes are on disagreement with their masters in Washington and Israel notwithstanding. These so-called apparent disagreements are occasionally practiced deliberately as smoke-screens for both public consumption and deception. I say this for clarification lest I will be misunderstood as someone defending the Saudi regime.

2. Secondly, based on what I know and what I briefly summarized above, I take issue with Scheer’s saying that Saudi Arabia had produced Osama bin Laden and 15 of his hijacker minions. Before Osama bin Laden has announced himself as an enemy of America, he was already known to be an enemy of the Saudi regime which he was urging to be toppled. As to the so-called “15 of his hijacker minions,” there are two ways to look at that. Assuming that 9 /11 was an inside job, one way to look at those 15 so-called hijackers is to consider them actually as victims provided by the Saudi regime in collaboration with the Bush regime, under the pretext of being sent to America for studying with very generous scholarships. Then at the time of the execution of the 9/11, those were shoved into these airplanes so their surviving passports would be used as smokescreens.

Assuming that those 15 were actually Al-Qaeda’s operatives, they must be looked at as political   enemies of the Saudi regime, who saw them as one with the American enemy. So to point to Osama and these 15 supporters as an indication that the Saudi regime is an enemy of America, as Scheer seems to imply, is really naiveté. So Saudi Arabia’s role, if any, in the 9 /11 event was actually one of helping plan it with the inside planners.

3. Thirdly, as to Scheer’s dwelling on the issue of king Abdullah’s refusing to increase oil production and his attack on the king as an enemy of the American way of life, I think that he missed the point and proved his non sophistication in analysis. On this point, I believe that the whole thing was orchestrated to appear that the stupid puppet King has actually his own mind. To further enrich his cronies in the oil industry, Bush actually asked the king to say what he said, and the media reporting this as the King’s refusal was also intended as another smokescreen to mislead the ignorant public, both in America and Saudi Arabia.

Report this

By DancesWithFascists, May 21, 2008 at 9:36 am Link to this comment

America is going down the tubes fast, if McCain gets in the White House it’ll be a Third World country before you can say ‘four more years’. 

Has anyone seen the interesting story of John Titor, purported time traveler?  What makes him special is that he provided theory and diagrams of how his time travel device works, and many professional physicists think it might actually work.  He got some dates wrong in his predictions but that could be because our timeline has changed, since he said multiverse theory is true.  What won’t change is physics and human nature, he said it would be very unlikely that we would wake up in time to avoid global nuclear war in 2015.  He was here in 2000-2001, saying in a few years our government would try to take away our civil liberties, people would revolt and a low-level civil war would begin, things would become more and more unstable not only in America but worldwide, with increasing international tensions happening until Russia launches nuclear war.

Well we’ve already seen several efforts, some successful, to take away our civil liberties, there are hundreds of FEMA ‘detention camps’ (i.e. concentration camps) set up around the country, BUT Karl Rove must have seen Titor’s writings and changed the game plan because we haven’t seen much in the way of civil war yet.  Bush has given himself power to declare martial law and the rules say that Congress can’t quibble about it for six months so all that needs to happen is for Bush and Cheney to stage another false flag terrorist attack like they did on 9/11 and Bush can declare martial law, suspend the Constitution, CANCEL OR VOID THE NOVEMBER ELECTIONS, and if he times it right Congress can’t do anything about it until sometime after Inauguration Day.  But of course Bush will be Supreme Leader at that point and won’t have to listen to Congress, like he already doesn’t with his signing statements anyway.

See http://johntitor.strategicbrains.com for details, but whether Titor’s story is true or not, the general outlines of his predictions have come true and if we don’t do something SOON to stop the rise of Fascism, lots of us (most of those who read Scheer certainly) are going to wind up in those FEMA camps.

Report this

By Dr. Knowitall, PhD, PhD, May 21, 2008 at 8:51 am Link to this comment

I side with your take, Don Stivers.  Factoring in inflation over the years, the price now may not be too unreasonable.  It’s going up in other countries so I tend not to place too much credence in the value of the dollar argument.

All told, I believe we’re basically a wants-based economy, not a needs-based one.  This is going to have the effect of prodding people into thinking about their oown distinction between the two, and I think that’s great. 

I think the proper place for oil is in the ground, not in the air and environment.  Fertilizers have wreaked havoc on the environment.  Farming done right precludes the use of chemicals, the use of most of which come “home to roost.”  Big Biz Ag is the big offender.

We can get along with much, much less, and thanks to our gov., and to their own detriment, we’re quickly going to find that out.  Gawd Bless Imerrika.

Report this

By Dr. Knowitall, PhD, PhD, May 21, 2008 at 8:40 am Link to this comment

That smacks of belief in natural selection and I don’t think we want to go there.  LOL

Report this

By Conservative Yankee, May 21, 2008 at 8:37 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Most of our imported oil is currently coming from Canada courtesy of their immense shale deposits. UNFORTUNATELY that oil is FAR more expensive to produce and refine than the Saudis “light sweet” variety

Report this

By Don Stivers, May 21, 2008 at 8:32 am Link to this comment

Did Bush wink wink as he ask for increased oil production?  The higher the price of oil overseas the higher it is here in the states.

In reality we should be paying more for a finite substance.  Oil should be used for lubricants and fertilizers. 

The civilized world lives because of consumption of natural resources.  The world is running out of natural resources.  We are going to end up growing our own food on our own little plot of land somewhere if somebody is not already occupying the spot.

The problem is over population and nobody ever addresses that issue.  At least it is not out in the forefront. 

But it is amazing that the Saudi government, in their palaces, gives the American citizen the finger.

Was it a wink, wink plea from our president?

Report this

By Rafe Pilgrim, May 21, 2008 at 8:27 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Bush’s basic problem, which he shares with McCain (and of course becomes ours)is that he is a man of attitudes over intelligence.  To massacre the Bard (which either of these boneheads would leap to for any perceived advantage):  “Such men are dangerous.  They think too LITTLE.”
.
But the even more basic problem persists:  Why, America, why do we choose and permit such as these to rule us?
.
Hey, here’s an idea:  Let’s stop allowing this NOW !

Report this

By Conservative Yankee, May 21, 2008 at 8:06 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Cyrena

“I mean, why do the auto manufactures even keep MAKING these guzzlers, when we know they could have come up with something far better”

Why should the auto companies put effort into “something better” when people are busting down the doors to get what they have?

Companies have no conscience. I never expect “the right thing” from corporate entities. Even Ben and Jerry eventually sold out for cash. 

If we want something better for ourselves and those who follow, WE are responsible for change.  One of the troubles wiht the USA is far too many people put their faith in politicians, CEO’s and various “others”

Report this

By hippy pam, May 21, 2008 at 7:49 am Link to this comment

I remember-25 years ago-when the gubmint said it was TO EXPENSIVE and UNFEASABLE to have SOLAR PANELS…
The gubmint STOPPED RESEARCH[cuz oil/gas execs wanted it STOPPED…]and WE JUST KEEP ON DRINKING THE TEA[remember the boston tea party from history?]
Some Body Needs To Start Somethin’......

Report this

By Expat, May 21, 2008 at 7:29 am Link to this comment

When a species gets this stupid; it usually goes extinct.

Report this

By Ivan Hentschel, May 21, 2008 at 7:18 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I agree with most of what is being said here, but I have been listening to those ghoulish people called economists, and the basic problem with oil price is that we keep printing too much money and sending it overseas for wars, along with our jobs. The result is the dollar isn’ t worth anything (Thanks, Dubya: great planning and leadership). The rest of the world pays far less per barrel than we do, because it takes more value-less dollars to pay for it. Last I heard, Iran will accept only euros and yen for oil: no dollars allowed.

“This is another fine mess you’ve gotten us in”.

Report this

By Expat, May 21, 2008 at 7:12 am Link to this comment

^ it is in fact “our” fault.  We’ve had almost 40 years since the last “gas” crisis of the 70’s.  What have we done?  0, nada, nothing and what’s worse is this: After the scare of the 70’s, we not only ignored alternative fuels/energy, but reinvented the “Super” car and the SUV “a go go”.  Hummers, Chevy Tahoe’s (4 doors, V-8’s, 4wd) and 10 miles to the gallon.  England is paying $10 a gallon for petrol!  We are one sick puppy.  Here in Thailand where people make about $125 USD/mos. on average; the price of diesel and petrol are the same as you pay in America.  Cretin is a word I use often lately, but I’m looking for a new word; I’m not sure I want to insult cretins by calling Bush a cretin.

Report this

By Dr. Knowitall, PhD, PhD, May 21, 2008 at 7:08 am Link to this comment

Bottom line, this is only one reason, but maybe the most important reason, for The People to take back their gov. 

There is absolutely no ethical reason the US does not have a substantive energy policy already up and running for a couple decades now.  Other countries do. 

We’ve been duped, hoodwinked, screwed, shafted and distracted by our government and we will start to care when we don’t have money for the cable bill, food and the muffler job because of 4, 5, 6, $8/gal. for gasoline. (Notice, I didn’t include beer, beerdoctor?)  Get used to it.  IMHO, it’s here’s to stay and getting worse.  Your poor kids!!!!

Report this

By cyrena, May 21, 2008 at 6:41 am Link to this comment

I dunno about the very last part CY. (though I trust you on all of the rest).

BUT, don’t you think that if Al Gore had actually moved into the Oval office after winning the election in 2000, that things WOULD be different?

I mean, I KNOW we wouldn’t have attacked Iraq and probably not Afghanistan either. (We might not have even had 9/11).

But even with the gas? Don’t you think we’d at least be 8 years further along in the developement of these alternative fuels (India now has cars that run on AIR) and would have made a transition away from the guzzlers?

I don’t know that for a fact of course, and I don’t know that anyone else would. BUT, it just seems like that would have been a very real possibility. I mean, why do the auto manufactures even keep MAKING these guzzlers, when we know they could have come up with something far better, and a long time ago, if a whole lot of folks (politicians and CEO’s) hadn’t been getting filthy rich off of it.

Report this

By jane, May 21, 2008 at 6:34 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Thank you again RS.If we( Cheney-bush) had already spent a few trillions on Iraq, then why is the gasoline price is still so high?

Report this
G.Anderson's avatar

By G.Anderson, May 21, 2008 at 6:29 am Link to this comment

It won’t be long until $4 dollar gas and $100 fill ups at the pump are just a memory.

With gas selling for $8 a gallon in Germany, it won’t be long until it’s at that price here.

Sure there will be calls for action to reduce the price, but nothing will be done, America will just have to adjust, and that means poverty and no middle class.

This would have been muuch different if we had actually won in Iraq, the world economic agenda would look much different.

Our defeat is disastrous to our economy and American’s will have to pay the economic price for that defeat.

Blame it all on Cheney, Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz, and Bush. That’s what happens when delusions become political policy. When lies and patriotic political symbols are used to manipulate and restrict freedom of disent, so that political opposition is crushed.

America in 4 years will be a much different country than it is now, as the suburbs and Los Angeles both depend on Cheap gas to exist.

Report this

By Dr. Knowitall, PhD, PhD, May 21, 2008 at 6:11 am Link to this comment

If any of you headed an oil-rich country, you wouldn’t sell your oil for one dime less than the world market would stand, just like the USA gets top dollar for everything it sells.  Bottom line is everything.  The mid-east isn’t out to help out the rest of the world by selling their oil at bargain prices.  They don’t have to.  Neither is the US, for that matter.  If it were, why aren’t there gas stations here that sell American produced gasoline at our desired bargain price?

I don’t buy any of this.  We’re being hoodwinked, yet again.

Report this

By Conservative Yankee, May 21, 2008 at 5:59 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

There are a number of cleaner fuels which can be used to support a sustainable economy. 

We have not explored that route to any great degree.

People could dump the 10, 15, and 20 MPG vehicles they currently drive, there are a number of vehicles which get 40 MPG, and some even higher, This would be the same as HALVING the price of gas.

There has been no discernable shift away from gas guzzling vehicles.

The government makes money as the dollar drops. This has the effect (over the Bush years) of an ADDITIONAL TAX of 50% on every dollar you earn or spend. If the government implimented an “honest” 50% tax there would be bloody revolution, but because most folks do not understand the economics of shifting currency, there is no audible outcry.

I get flamed every time I say this, but I’m sorry. It is our fault that we are in this fix. AND although GWB is a vile cretin, with our current attitude we’d be in the same position no matter who sat in the White House.

Report this

By Dr. Knowitall, PhD, PhD, May 21, 2008 at 5:21 am Link to this comment

If we’re really committed to the truth here then I suggest we all do some investigation.  It’s my understanding, I don’t know this to be fact, that world oil production may have peaked.  If this is the case, you add that to the other possible truth that places like China and India are adding automobiles to their landscape at an unprecedented rate, along with drivers, added to their greatly increasing thirst for oil and the total becomes: let’s take some time to find out what the optimum price for oil/gasoline might be. 

We’ve seen this coming, the increased world competition for oil, for years.  Our government and congress chose to ignore it and frittered away years of opportunity to come up with an energy policy.  Now our backs are against the wall.

I already see some good in the gas price increase.  As difficult as it is for middle class people to endure, it’s going to prod us into doing what all of us should have done decades ago.

Blaming this on the war doesn’t make sense to me.  Factor it out, and the price would still go up, maybe not quite as fast, but fast, nonetheless.

Sometimes when I’m driving on the freeway, I look at all the cars and trucks hemming me in and wonder where the hell all the gasoline in their tanks comes from and realize that this is just one little corner of this country in this huge world. Blaming it on the war is just another distraction like those we’ve become so used to. Only this one is coming from the left.

Report this
Paul_GA's avatar

By Paul_GA, May 21, 2008 at 4:30 am Link to this comment

...when the country was at relative peace, and I was able to fill my gas tank for 69 cents a gallon.

SIXTY-NINE CENTS.

I don’t expect to return to those halcyon days, but that is where we have come, thanks to a policy of unending war.

The solution? End the stupid, idiotic wars!

Report this

By TED DICKIE, May 21, 2008 at 4:08 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Thomas Friedman Op-ed Column—-May21,2008. Oil at $200 a barrel.  OPEC could “potentially buy Bank of America in one month of production,Apple computers in a week and General Motors in just three days! The World Balance of Power is “drastically shifting.” What will happen when America is “only” a military supper power? Not even able to afford all those high priced weapons systems? Interesting?????

Report this

By TED DICKIE, May 21, 2008 at 3:21 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Since May 10th. the “Bush-Royal Family” have added an extra 300,000 barrels of oil a day to world supply. That would be the Saudi’s,represented in Washington by Bandar—“Bush.” Speculators are"manipulating” the futures market and consequently the price of oil.The Marginal Cost of oil,should be no more than $80 a barrel.Ship loads of Iranian oil have been floating at sea for weeks awaiting buyers.Meanwhile the Moron prepares to retire to his ranch in Crawford,Texas leaving the American economy in shambles and foreign policy in a quagmire—Iraq. The whole world,but especially the American public are paying a “very high price” for electing this Idiot,in the first place!

Report this

By jackpine savage, May 21, 2008 at 3:20 am Link to this comment

Why do these articles about oil prices all gloss over the largest factor in the skyrocketing of oil prices?

Go back and price a barrel of oil or a gallon of gasoline in 2002 dollars…it doesn’t look so bad.  Sure $65/bbl or $2/gallon is more than what Americans are used to, but it is reasonable.

Oil prices are where they are because of fiscal/monetary stupidity on America’s part (which is indirectly related to the invasion of Iraq).  We’ve been borrowing like a drunken sailor and it has negatively affected our currency.  That currency is the currency of oil trading.

The Saudis have said (with veiled words) that prices are our own damned fault.  And that tanking dollar is putting the squeeze on oil exporting economies in terms of interest rates, etc.  They need twice as many dollars as in 2002 to equal the same amount of value, but at a certain point those growing worthless greenbacks don’t do much good…i.e. who cares if they keep piling higher.

And that cycle won’t stop until the US stops borrowing money to finance both its day-to-day operations and several conflicts. 

The Saudis won’t allow OPEC meetings to even discuss shifting oil sales to a basket of currencies, because even such talk (though a few Gulf States have done it anyhow) would turn the dollar’s decline into a nose dive.

If today were the 90’s and the US was a different country, Tom Friedman would be talking about how we’d better strap on a golden strait-jacket if we wanted to “make it”.

Welcome to the third world, America…don’t expect a whole lot of sympathy from all the people who’ve felt your boot on their throats for so many decades.

Report this

By DancesWithFascists, May 21, 2008 at 3:18 am Link to this comment

Mister Scheer, I could go on about PNAC and other evidence but you get the point I hope.  The evidence is strong, millions of Americans already are convinced Bush and Cheney did it, but the complicit media are not helping to spread the truth of the evidence and neither are you.  Somebody obviously held a gun to Noam Chomsky’s head or threatened the lives of his family to get him to say that Bush wasn’t involved in 9/11 and it wouldn’t matter anyway if he was (this from Noam Chomsky without duress?  Not possible), so I can understand the kinds of concerns you must have, but somebody prominent like yourself has to go public with the charges or else we are all going to continue to live under the thumbs of the mass murderers in the White House and whatever plans they have next for us.  Those plans remain obscure, but the fact is that Bush has given himself authority to declare martial law in the event of a “national emergency” (he gets to decide what qualifies), to suspend the Constitution and do whatever he wants.  There are already HUNDREDS of FEMA detention camps set up in the U.S. all ready to go awaiting customers, and I think it is very unlikely that Bush and Cheney and their war profiteer buddies are going to peacefully give up their money machine that is Iraq, so the logical thing is that Bush will find or create another excuse to declare martial law, cancel or void the November election, and continue to fight the “war on terror” that he and Cheney created to achieve their greedy and criminal ends.  I beg you, please don’t let this happen without raising your voice.

Report this

By DancesWithFascists, May 21, 2008 at 3:17 am Link to this comment

4) Any analysis of MOTIVE and OPPORTUNITY you must agree has to point squarely at Bush and Cheney.  One of Bush’s brothers had been in charge of WTC security so he would have been able to provide access; clearly Bush and Cheney callously used the mass murders to justify their invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq, so they and their war profiteer buddies behind the scenes have obviously BENEFITTED from the attacks to the tune of hundreds of billions of dollars and counting.  Bush’s apparent pride at holding the record of most executions while governor, his mocking of Karla Faye Tucker’s begging for him to spare her life, and the loss of 4,000 + American GI’s lives that Bush “gave up golf” for, these all speak to the kind of appetite for mass murder that COULD be expected to plan the deaths of nearly 3,000 Americans on 9/11 for crass personal gain.  Yes, Osama bin Laden was probably involved in some way, he has been buddies with the Bushes for years, Reagan and Bush Sr. gave him tens of millions of dollars to set up Al Qaeda in the first place to fight the Russians, but the only way to explain why Bush would have let so many Saudis and bin Laden family members escape the country right after 9/11 when all other normal air traffic was grounded, is that he owed them a favor.  Why do you and the rest of the media give Bush a big pass on these obvious fingers pointing directly at him as being involved in 9/11?

5) The mass media, known to be controlled by the CIA and owned for the most part by a handful of arch-conservatives, has not taken up the charge for 9/11 truth despite HUNDREDS of professional people (architects, engineers, pilots, firefighters, scientists and educated people of all types) who have all put their professional lives on the line by coming out publicly to say that 9/11 had to be an inside job.  This is unprecedented in history, it is a huge news story all by itself, yet it is practically ignored by the media.  THIS ITSELF IS EVIDENCE THAT THERE IS A CONTINUING 9/11 COVERUP.  On the rare occasions that 9/11 truth is ever mentioned in the media it is always with a lot of derision and snorting laughter about “wackos” and so forth, lying media shills supporting the coverup.  Look what happened to Rosie O’Donnell, how she was treated, how anyone gets treated for trying to speak the truth of their beliefs in what is supposed to be a free country.  Then you have various shills, government shills pretending they don’t even know about the molten steel/iron in the basements, deep-cover shills like Bill Maher who is obviously smart enough to know better ardently defending the Bush administration against charges of mass murder, even Michael Moore who researched the topic of 9/11 pretty thoroughly (we all thought at first) in Fahrenheit 9/11 but never touched on the possibility that it was an inside job.  There are a number of people on YouTube who spend hours every day, for weeks and months on end, lying about and denying the evidence that doesn’t fit and cannot be reconciled with the official conspiracy theory.

Report this

By DancesWithFascists, May 21, 2008 at 3:15 am Link to this comment

Mister Scheer, you are probably one of the brightest people on the planet, you see the propaganda for what it is and you understand what is going on behind the scenes that explains the need for the propaganda.  Thank you for sharing your insights with us.

So why are you still acting as though you don’t know that 9/11 was an inside job perpetrated by Bush & Cheney with the likely help of some of their flying monkeys like Mossad and rogue elements in the CIA?  Polls show that up to 85% of Americans believe the official conspiracy theory is a lie, the rest of the world knows better too even if nobody knows for sure all the details the coverup is concealing.  There is just too much hard evidence that cannot be explained by the official conspiracy theory:

1) The nearly freefall and perfectly symmetrical collapse of WTC 7 on 9/11 after asymmetrical damage, looking EXACTLY like a controlled demolition.  Larry Silverstein blurted out on video that the building was ordered “pulled”, no other steel-framed highrise in history (before WTCs 1 and 2 anyway) has ever collapsed to the ground due to fire, firefighters were apparently warned of its impending collapse, and professional demolition experts have said it had to have come down by a controlled demolition. 

2) Molten steel/iron was found in the basements of all three WTCs including WTC 7 (invalidating the lying claims that it was really molten aluminum from the airplanes) when the fires could not and did not get nearly hot enough to melt steel, and there was glowing molten orange-hot metal seen falling out of one of the Twin Towers before it collapsed (which also could not have been aluminum because aluminum does not glow with a reddish color even if it did melt at the temperatures produced by jet fuel and office furnishings burning in air).  That molten steel/iron was so hot that it stayed molten for weeks and was reported in all the newspapers as a strange anomaly that firefighters had never seen, because ordinarily steel does not melt in building fires.  Some of the solidified chunks called “meteorites” have been saved, they are clearly not aluminum (aluminum doesn’t rust) and they can be seen at http://moltenmetalsmokinggun.blogspot.com/.  The official conspiracy theory cannot explain them, but as you must surely know by now, that molten steel/iron can be explained by THERMITE or one of its derivatives (i.e. thermate) which could have been used to pre-weaken the structures before explosive demolition and which leaves large quantities of molten iron behind. 

3) The lies and evasions of the Bush administration which you normally are right on top of, you have let completely slide in this area.  Why did Bush and Cheney fight so hard against any 9/11 investigation?  How is it that they were finally allowed to stack the 9/11 Commission with their sycophants?  How to explain the deliberate lie by Bush about where he was and what he was thinking during the first attack, documented on the White House website and on video which cannot be denied, a lie repeated a SECOND TIME?  Details and documentation about Bush’s 9/11 lie are at http://censored.strategicbrains.com/BushAnd911.cfm although most of the videos on that page have been successfully censored now, they cannot change the words on the White House website nor retract the extant videos.  Only culpable criminals need to LIE, so why do you feel that Bush should get a pass on this important evidence from his own mouth that he has indeed lied to the American people about his role in 9/11?

Report this

By cyrena, May 21, 2008 at 2:53 am Link to this comment

Yeah, they ARE coming home to roost, and like the moron-in-chief, far too many Americans are still scratching their heads and wondering what happened.

And, it’s NOT because this forewarning of PEAK OIL hasn’t been out there and available to anyone who would listen. The Thugs of DC of course, haven’t wanted to acknowledge it, and they’ve just led the American people right into the trap. Deny, deny, deny…say everything is fine. Just go shopping. Go to Wal-Mart as a matter of fact, since the Chinese are using 10 times more oil than than they used this time 8 years ago, before they started making ALL of our own products.

So, you have to pay a little more for gas bush says…just think of how much less you have to pay for all of that shit that you now HAVE to buy from China. (I mean, we don’t make anything of our own anymore).

Meantime, Robert Scheer is right again. 40 years ago, Saudia Arabia was a blip on the landscape of the Arabian desert, still living in the 17th Century. And then…America came along and helped make it their Kingdom, except of course they never had the real reins to the control, seeing as how those Saudi Royals weren’t about to give it up. Guess bush the boy just couldn’t maintain the relationship that the oldster had with the Dynasty, though Cheney has certainly tried, and enriched himself by triple what the moron has managed to get from the deal. And let me tell you, Barbara Bush is PISSED!
Cheney’s Assets Nearly Triple Bush’s
  The Associated Press
  Thursday 15 May 2008
  Washington - The millions of dollars in assets reported by Vice President Dick Cheney and his wife, Lynn, nearly triple those held by President Bush and the first lady, Laura Bush, according to newly released financial disclosure forms
http://www.truthout.org/docs_2006/051608D.shtml

And let me tell you, Barbara Bush is PISSED! Claims Cheney STOLE that money from her boy.  Meantime, no doubt The Dick and Lynne are already packed up and ready for the final escape to Dubai. Hell, they might have moved already, and just use Air Force 2 to commute. No big deal, they aren’t paying for the gas.

And then…there’s us. Woe is we. Yep, it’s gonna get worse, and most of us still are not in any way prepared to weather that epidemic. Heads buried for far too long, or otherwise worried about the chickens that Rev. Wright already told you were coming home to roost.

Didn’t believe him, eh?

Report this

By middlepath, May 21, 2008 at 12:45 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The chickens are coming home to roost.

Report this

By mike, May 20, 2008 at 11:18 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

When the world demands 87 million barrels a day and the suppliers can only produce 85 million - the price goes up and up and up.

It goes to the highest bidder and the plateau of production has remained the same since 2006, it’s never going to be enough.

We’ve just reached the first drop off the plateau.

The Saudis are just making it last as long as possible.  It’s called “peak oil” and it’s not going away, it’s only going to get worse, much worse.

Report this
Newsletter

sign up to get updates


 
 
Right 1, Site wide - BlogAds Premium
 
Right 2, Site wide - Blogads
 
Join the Liberal Blog Advertising Network
 
 
 
Right Skyscraper, Site Wide
 
Join the Liberal Blog Advertising Network
 

A Progressive Journal of News and Opinion   Publisher, Zuade Kaufman   Editor, Robert Scheer
© 2014 Truthdig, LLC. All rights reserved.

Like Truthdig on Facebook