Wow, are gas prices high. I have been doing a lot of driving lately. Recently I have been as far north as northern Minnesota, in Wisconsin and now Mississippi. I drive a diesel. Diesel around the US varies in price from $3.89 to as high as $4.40. Gasoline prices vary even more. I have seen it close to $5 a gallon in Chicago, which has some of the highest gas prices in the US. But, mostly it’s solidly in the low $4 per gallon range. The national average is in the high threes.
What’s even more amazing is oil is not trading at extreme highs. In 2007, oil hit $144 per barrel. Gas prices at that time were over $3 per gallon and everyone was screaming. It seemed as if every media outlet grabbed their pitchforks and were running to kill the speculators. But this time the silence is deafening.
No one is holding a hearing to crucify speculators. No one is screaming. The breathless news media isn’t doing stories on it. I don’t see headlines in the newspapers about it. There are two reasons why.
1. Everyone has gotten used to really high gas prices.
2. The media knows Obama’s energy policy failed so they don’t want to draw attention to how high energy prices are an added tax on the middle class.
The US hasn’t increased the supply line of energy in the last four years. Government regulations have restricted exploration, so the market is pricing in less supply. Constricted supply with higher demand leads to much higher prices. Check out the college tuition market for evidence.
Obama has been a total fail when it comes to energy policy. Instead of smoothing the path to build nuclear power plants, he voted present. Instead of allowing for more energy expansion in our country, he blocked it. He used government spending to toss money to his cronies in green energy and the companies went bankrupt.
Additionally, the Federal Reserve has decreased the value of the dollar. The world’s trade in energy products is done with dollars. A decreased greenback value artificially increases the price of all energy products.
It actually might be refreshing to see the media tell people to get their pitchforks and go after those greedy speculators again. At least then, we would know they are paying attention.