Derek Hunter

To be clear, refiners will only manufacture as much fuel as they can sell. They can’t store millions of gallons of gasoline that no one in the U.S. wants to buy. So if fuel exports are banned and taxed heavily, as O’Reilly suggests, refiners will manufacture less fuel. That could lead to refinery closures and worker layoffs.

If our federal government is serious about lowering gasoline prices, it should first start by eliminating EPA’s overreaching regulations on refiners, which make it more costly to manufacture fuels. We must also support policies that drive down the cost of oil. The only way for that to happen is to increase the supply of oil AND the stability of that supply.

O’Reilly and Democrats would have you believe that in addition to colluding oil companies, the price of oil is high because of “Wall Street speculators,” traders on the commodities market. They seem to think “speculators” are able to manipulate the price of oil. Commodities traders take large risks, and it’s called “risk” for a reason. Were they able to control the price of oil they’d be called something beside “speculators.”

But O’Reilly and Democrats need a boogeyman.

O’Reilly needs it because he fancies himself the champion of “the folks,” average Americans who he seems to think can’t figure things out for themselves.

Democrats need it to distract from the fact that high gasoline prices are something they’ve wanted and advocated for years. They’d prefer we’d have gotten to $5 per gallon gas through high taxes, rather than unrest in the Middle East, but this is where they want them to be.

President Obama wants high gas prices to drive consumers Americans to embrace alternate “green” sources of energy. The only problem with his plan is there is no “green” alternative readily available now to counteract high gas prices. The only result of his anti-domestic energy plan (denying new drilling permits, killing the Keystone XL pipeline, etc.) is to harm the wallets of all Americans, particularly low income Americans, those he claims to want to help.

But the President doesn’t seem to mind that. Instead of working to lower gasoline prices, he’s working to distract people, to shift the blame to Democrat’s boogeyman and Republicans while insulating himself. Bill O’Reilly and his irrational, illogical crusade against “big oil” is helping him in that quest.

If O’Reilly truly were interested in informing people as to why prices at the pump are high, he’d put his emotions aside, look past the oil companies, boogeymen and political spin and take a look at what’s really going on. When it comes to “big oil,” he hasn’t done it in the past, so there’s little reason to think he’ll do so now. But we can always hope.

Derek Hunter

Derek Hunter is Washington, DC based writer, radio host and political strategist. You can also stalk his thoughts 140 characters at a time on Twitter.