Sunday, December 21, 2008

Gas Prices At Five Year Lows, Obama Hasn't Even Invaded Canada Yet

The price of gasoline is as low as it has been in five years. How did this happen? Was it the result of a socialist redistribution scheme, tax credits, or some kind of bailout? Was it because we punished corporate executives at the oil companies? Did we finally get those speculators under control? Did the federal goverment develop a new kind of energy-saving technology?  Did we threaten to go to war with the Canadians unless they increased oil production? Was it something Obama did?

No, gasoline prices did not decrease because of government intervention.  Prices went too high, demand went down, prices dropped. Economics 101.

The invisible hand of supply and demand works very well. But on the downside, when we let free markets solve our problems, politicians don't get credit and the news media don't get to write scintillating headlines demonizing corporate executives.  


A Saudi court has rejected a plea to divorce an
eight-year-old girl married off by her father to a man who is 58, saying the case should wait until the girl reaches puberty...  Please remind me why we care what this part of the world thinks about us?

Obama and a new Congress can’t forget about
energy policy.

Obama worshipers: don't expect things to change overnight. Rice says Obama likely to follow Bush on foreign policy. Ms Rice’s words could damp expectations that the incoming administration will represent a complete break with its predecessor on foreign policy.


Anonymous said...

"Please remind me why we care what this part of the world thinks about us?"

Because the Left likes to be liked. They take the "my enemy's enemy is my friend" saying to the extreme, and assume that since Islam hates Christianity that they must just love the Left.

Great points about supply & demand. My big concern with the bailouts, "Global Warming," etc. is that the Left will use it as an excuse to grab more and more power and money. If things get better because of supply & demand or other unrelated reasons, they'll take credit and use that to justify more power & $.

If things don't get better they'll use that to justify more power & $, because it will mean we obviously didn't give them enough to begin with, right?

Critical Thinker said...

Funny how the decrease in production by OPEC last week was supposed to solve this problem.

Relying on commodities for your economy is risky business, just ask the Russians.

Dan Trabue said...

RK said:

"Please remind me why we care what this part of the world thinks about us?"

And Neil responded:

Because the Left likes to be liked.

No, not quite right. We care what people think and do around the globe because we live on this globe with them. We care what people think about us and all manner of things because we are interested in a peaceful world. One of the first steps towards more peaceful lives is understanding the Other and helping the Other understand us.

We don't need to agree with the Other nor do they need to agree with us, but wisdom would call for attempts at understanding.


RightKlik said...

1. Peace isn't a result of being "liked." Peace is a result of being respected /feared.

2. Americans know the difference between right and wrong at least as well as anyone else in the world. We don't need to gauge world opinion to know if we're on the right track. In fact, being on the right track will guarantee us a low esteem in the court of public opinion in many cases.

3. There are parts of the world where public opinion of the U.S. has been tainted by government propaganda or by shameless bigotry. Yes, I know we have bigotry and propaganda in the U.S. That doesn't negate my point.

robert verdi said...

you seem decent enough a person, but its a tough and brutal world out there. I did a tour in Iraq and saw one Saddam's execution chambers close up, I also visited Dachau at another time in my life. It is a good planet, but there are forces and people out there who wish to exploit the decency with which you are attempting to improve the world. And these people will kill by the millions. Good luck and Merry Christmas.

EagleEye said...

Wow. A member of the Left (I assume) who didn't resort to flame attacks and gibberish. I am now in a state of total moral confusion...:)

Nicely said, but I would have to disagree on the point that while understanding your enemy is fine (and desired) I could not care less about what the world thinks of us. It then begins to drive policy. If I wanted to be like Europe.. I would move there.


Dan Trabue said...

If we wish to be a world leader in a positive sense of the world (as opposed to being a world bully, getting our way by fear and intimidation), then it is wise policy to work with other nations responsibly.

No, I'm not talking about appeasement so that people "like us," and I don't know anyone serious on the Left who thinks thusly. I'm talking about treating people with respect, following rules that we expect others to follow, that sort of thing.

I'm talking about realizing that our interests may not always align with other nations' interests and forcing our way because it works best for us - that approach to foreign policy is a recipe for disaster. If you live in a neighborhood with a bunch of thugs and unsavory types, the wise thing to do is NOT to try to arrest and kill everyone that is a thug, but to turn things around.

As Jefferson noted:

"I do not believe war the most certain means of enforcing principles. Those peaceable coercions which are in the power of every nation, if undertaken in concert and in time of peace, are more likely to produce the desired effect."


" The evils which of necessity encompass the life of man are sufficiently numerous. Why should we add to them by voluntarily distressing and destroying one another? Peace, brothers, is better than war. In a long and bloody war, we lose many friends, and gain nothing. Let us then live in peace and friendship together, doing to each other all the good we can."

THAT's what the Left-ish folk that I know are talking about: Wise, peaceable relations with other nations and groups, seeking friendship and to be peacemakers, not bullies gaining our desired ends through fear and intimidation.

And with that, I bid a peaceable and Merry Christmas, happy holidays to all here.

robert verdi said...

Dan its okay to intimidate genocidal tyrants, its all they understand.

Dan Trabue said...

Again, what I and progressive types (as well as reasonable conservative types) want is not to coddle tyrants. Rather, we want to have responsible means for stopping oppression.

That has nothing to do with "being liked," but rather, just responsible foreign policy. We can't bomb our way to a secure world. Even if it worked (and it doesn't), we couldn't afford it. We need to be in a position to responsibly oppose oppression. Fear and intimidation alone is an unwise approach.

-suitepotato- said...

In a world without the understanding nor interest in same, of their existence as a creature with free will circumscribed only by their nature, whatever that is, then fear and intimidation is the most advantageous remaining choice if not the only one.

Humans are not intelligent nice beings. They are rude schismatic predatory animals who've amassed a rich history cataloging their ability to prove that in the most disgusting ways. It is when they truly understand that and embrace it that they can change it by choice and not by random happenstance which is an effective alternative in neither governance of their affairs nor shooting enemies on a battlefield and when used for the former will inevitably bring about the mad frenzied latter.

Have you ever tried to fix a broken pipe without touching it? Nor can you fix what's wrong any other time but by to face it and seize hold of it. Only through acceptance of how a situation actually is, and not by self-deceptive imagination of what you wish can any situation be honestly addressed.

But humanity runs away from what they are, and sometimes randomly creates a fake peace inviting the next real war. It is still random happenstance and as reliable.

The left's behavior in the regard related in the question is another example of this. Their motivation isn't desire for peace even if some want it, nor is it for betterment of the world even if some might passingly consider it.

It is because they want control they think they don't have, power they think they don't have. They want attention and the control and power they think that gives them. So they are reflexively contrarian to to common sense and tradition in order to get that.

Acquisition of power and control is beside the point. It of course follows, but it wasn't the raison d'etre. And as I said, random happenstance is not a reliable nor sane or healthy foundation for human enterprise so what makes us so much better off if as a side effect of their hunger for attention like a spoiled teenager they gain power over the confiscatory police powers of the state?

It hardly matters that they imagine themselves better, nicer, more noble. What whimsical idiots imagine is unimportant. All that is important is who ends up with the power, do they know the nature of it, and do they truly willfully freely choose to exert such as they do on your behalf with their best beliefs for your best prosperity aforethought?

I guarantee you that they don't.

RightKlik said...

"Humans are not intelligent nice beings. They are rude schismatic predatory animals who've amassed a rich history cataloging their ability to prove that in the most disgusting ways."

This is why I am so concerned about Obama's apparent naïvité.

Dan Trabue said...

suitepotato said:

It is because they [the "Left"] want control they think they don't have, power they think they don't have.

Do you have a source for this? Which people on the Left are advocating gaining control for the sake of control? Can you name anyone serious and provide a quote to support your statement or is this just a hunch, with no real foundation?

Constructive Feedback said...

My friend - you had better print this article out and store it in a safe.

I assure you that in 12 to 20 years from now the popular talking point as we partake economic analysis from a rear view mirror is that "George W. Bush RAN UP the prices of oil as a pay off for his oil buddies".

Do you really believe that anyone is going to volunteer the fact that while we saw $4 gasoline under Bush and $1.50 gasoline under Obama that the gasoline was in fact $1.50 at the end of the Bush term?


Just prior to the election one of my co-workers sent out an email with Clinton/Gore and then Bush/Cheney with the prices of gasoline Photoshopped into the picture. ($1.29 and then $4.19) The caption wrote "Symbolism of each administration's governance". I did not bother to send a reply asking how he explained the current prices.

Some Americans are not interested in fact.
Your job is to keep a record and force them to look at the facts.