Fueling the Fires of War and Discontent: $100 Oil and $3 Gas on the Event Horizon

(re-promoting – this should be up top (7pm) – promoted by On The Bus)

This is troubling, not because it is unexpected but more due to the fact that many have predicted it and watched as their dire predictions came true. From CNN Money:1

With oil prices setting records over $90 a barrel – and $100 looking ever more likely – experts say there’s a good chance drivers will see $3 gasoline before the end of the year.

“Three dollar gasoline in this market is unavoidable,” said Stephen Schork, publisher of the industry newsletter the Schork Report. “At this rate, we’re going to see $4 a gallon.”

If you think that’s bad, make the jump and read more…

All the analysts in this story expect crude to hit $100 a barrel.

“It’s a matter of when, not if,” said Norrish.[…snip…]

“The underlying market balance will continue to tighten, and if the geopolitical situation worsens, we’ll get to $100 very quickly,” he said.

[…snip…]

“There’s a tremendous amount of bull energy in this market,” he said. ‘There’s no reason we can’t get to $100.”

[click the link above for the whole article]

That last line in the excerpt bugs the hell out of me — ‘There’s no reason we can’t get to $100.’ — because it sounds like the pricing level is a goal instead of a measure. And it bugs me more to think that it could be the signal of a near-term goal for oil companies who have been posting record profits for the duration of the BushCheney Administration, sheltered from accountability and investigative oversight by the GOP enablers in Congress.

But that’s not the worst of it.

Heading into the winter season in the US, home heating oil costs are expected to rise dramatically. You may breathe a sigh of relief if you live in the UK when seeing these figures. In fact, if you’re in need of home heating oil yourself in the UK, you can contact Lucas Fuels for home delivery. Now, let’s see the dreaded figures:2

Americans will spend $977 to heat their homes this year, averaging for all fuels across all sections of the country, according to the Energy Information Administration.

Those heating with oil can expect to pay $319 more this year compared to last, according to a government report Tuesday.

Who’s likely to be the hardest hit?

Americans who use oil heat will be hit the hardest. Due mostly to higher crude prices, nationwide-average oil heating bills this winter are expected to be 22 percent higher than they were a year ago, EIA said.

Wow — not anything to sneeze at. It’s a good thing we’ve got a federally mandated and supported drive to reduce our carbon footprint and develop alternative fuels while learning how to be more efficient, eh?

Oh, wait — no, that’s not this United States. That’d be something under development in the reality-based United States; we’re in BushCheney’s Republican Wonder-Land. Sorry.

So, since we haven’t got anything of significance in the pipeline from our deranged, delusional and arrogant leadership, what kind of increased costs can oil heat users expect? Well, that depends on your financial situation — the numbers may mean a lot to some families and small businesses, and not so much to others:

That translates into a $319 seasonal increase in average heating bills, although actual amounts will vary depending on region and home size. About 7 percent of all Americans, mostly in the Northeast, heat their homes with oil.

Darn those Northerners. All they do is complain, eh? I mean, a little extra money here and there while waiting for the climate to warm should be considered an investment, right? After all, they’re spending more now, but won’t have to spend as much in the future once winters move even more Northward.

~sigh~

Unfortunately, that’s the kind of reasoning I can imagine hearing from the folks who deny climate change and who claim that our economy is strong, our wars are just (because they say so) and our infrastructure is to be envied the world over.

All that, of course, is evidence of their preference to believe in fantasy. Instead, however, what does our fact-based world tell us about the causes behind the rising prices?

Analysts attribute the price jump to a number of factors: the falling value of the dollar, fears over Gulf of Mexico storms, conflict or potential conflict in Iran, Nigeria and Venezuela, speculative investing and surging worldwide demand and limited supply.

Mmmm…that’s a curious list of items, isn’t it? It’s almost like a shopping list of items that the BushCheney Republicans have somehow touched and reacted to in a manner and method wholly consistent with their ideology: inept, incompetent, dangerously deluded and in constant denial of any wrongdoing or error. But wait — what about climate changes? Could those factor in as well? …ah:

In addition to citing higher fuel prices, EIA said this winter is projected to be 4 percent colder than last

Oh, well — there it is. A mention of a climate-related issue: colder winters.

Perhaps that’s best, tho. After all, with colder winters, it’s all the better to gather together with the rest of the tired, poor, huddled masses as we yearn to keep warm, while the wretched captains of industry reap their tempest-tost profits.3

Anybody got an extra blanket…?

__________

1. Here comes $100 oil, and $3 gas; With crude setting new highs every day, experts say there’s no way motorists won’t see a spike at the pump, by Steve Hargreaves, CNNMoney.com staff writer, posted on October 26 2007: 5:16 PM EDT.

2. From Home heating bills on the rise; Price of oil heat this winter forecast to jump 22 percent, or $319. Natural gas users can expect to pay 10 percent more – report, by Steve Hargreaves, CNNMoney.com staff writer, posted October 9 2007: 12:41 PM EDT.

3. The words closing this piece are a play on words from The New Colossus, a poem by Emma Lazarus inscribed upon the base of the Statue of Liberty. The most famously quoted section of the poem is:

“Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door.”

With a name like “Lazarus” penning the words that appear on one of our most powerful symbols, I can only find myself hoping that the resurrection of liberty and justice within this nation isn’t far behind…

Crossposted to DailyKos.

25 comments

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    • GreyHawk on October 29, 2007 at 11:26 pm
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    • GreyHawk on October 29, 2007 at 11:31 pm
      Author

    From the comments in the crosspost on DailyKos, I also ask the following:

    in lieu of tips please dig out some extra blankets and contribute those you don’t need to a homeless shelter, or — better — buy some new, clean ones and donate those. Old comfy sweaters or heavy shirts, or new ones, also make great gifts for those who don’t have enough and who may find themselves on the bread lines — or worse — for the first time this year when the big cold strikes.

    And you needn’t contribute just to homeless shelters; shelters for battered women and children, etc., are all good options too.

    Peace.

    So, you know what you need to do, folks. 😉  And thank you.

    • GreyHawk on October 29, 2007 at 11:35 pm
      Author

    I just wanted to post these (this essay, plus “Follow the Money”); didn’t realize they autoposted to the FP, and now I can’t demote ’em.

    HELP!

  1. I hope oil goes up and up till it reaches what it is costing in the real world. The one that does not care about winning for the corporations or owners of SUV’s. The false world of the importance of hauling your children to soccer, or your commute to hell is not real. It cannot win, our selfish dreams must meet the real of cause and effect. As political reality gives way to natures reality I just hope mother nature can shake us and wake us to the point where we see the – zero of pursuing the dreams we have concocted in the land of self delusion, where our visions are delusional and based on gimme. 

    • Slugbug on October 30, 2007 at 12:38 am

    so maybe $4 here (W coast)

  2. Mine’s pretty good, 25-30mpg, but where are the cars that get 50, 75 or 100 miles to the gallon.  I think it is shameful that we don’t have more fuel efficient cars.  I don’t mean more fuel efficient, I mean dramatically more fuel efficient.  I understand that people fell in love with SUV’s in the 90s because so many people had more money than they knew what to do with and then it was Hummers after 911, but this is not about money!  It is really obscene.  We’ve known about this, the need to get unhooked from the middle-east and foreign oil since the 1970s.  What is the matter with us?  I think this is really pissing people off–younger people who are just waking up to the situation as adults are really interested in finding and pushing a solution.  What used to be called derisively “alternative” energy just doesn’t seem very radical anymore.  It is like, why wasn’t this done yesterday–seriously, yesterday?  Let’s get it done NOW.  I don’t want to wait 10 years for fuel efficiency.

    • nocatz on October 30, 2007 at 12:50 am

    it become profitable to crank all that oil out of the rock in Colorado?

    • robodd on October 30, 2007 at 1:13 am

    it’s just free enterprise.  🙂

    • Twank on October 30, 2007 at 1:49 am

    to really piss America off?

    “The hookers are doubling their rates!”

    “NOOOOO! To the parapets, men!”

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