Thursday, April 28, 2011

Speculators - a persistent mythology

Fact #1: At current production rates, the world's crude oil output is approximately 3.8 billion gallons each day. That's over 91 million barrels each day.

Fact #2: The closing price of crude oil on April 28, 2011, is $112.76 USD.

The current liberal explanation for the rising cost of crude oil is that "speculators" are manipulating the market in an effort to drive up prices and create some sort of windfall for themselves. How would that work? What sort of actions could an individual or group take that would raise the price of oil, without raising the costs of producing that oil? The only way to raising the price of anything without raising the underlying costs is to do one of two things: increase the demand for it, or reduce the supply of it.

If we take for granted that a small group of investors can't cause millions upon millions of people to desire more oil, then their only choice is to reduce the supply of available oil. And how could they do that? By either keeping it from being produced in the first place, or by buying up available oil before it can get to consumers.

Returning to the facts stated above...

Barrels Produced per day: 91,373,613
Price per barrel: $112.76

So in order to buy a day's worth of oil ... or 0.27% of the oil produced in a year ... someone would need to come up with $10,303,288,613 USD.

It's not possible to cause the kinds of price increases we've seen by taking only 0.27% of the supply off the market. You'd need to take at least 1% of that supply, or over $50 billion worth of oil, to move the price. And then you'd need to store it somewhere. And then, in order to make a profit off of this action, you would need to have enough money to buy and sell oil that you weren't storing. That's ridiculous. The only entities with that kind of available cash are sovereign governments.

Bottom line is this.

Speculators are not to blame for a 65% rise in oil prices. The cause is that democrat policies have unnecessarily restricted the production of oil, so that the market cannot respond adequately to the demands of a modern, powered world.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Liberalism attacks the poor: Radical Environmentalism

One of the most amazing contradictions of modern politics is the claim that liberal policies intend to help the poor and underprivileged. I'll return to this theme often. Today, we'll examine the cruelty of the radical environmentalist agenda.

This chart (please click to enlarge> gives us a crystal-clear view of the dramatic rise in gas prices since 2004 ... when the democrat party took over Congress and began pushing a far-left economic agenda ... and again since 2008, when that agenda began to be implemented by the current presidential administration.

Radical environmentalists believe this is a good thing. They believe that this will force the economy into reduced dependence on fossil fuels.

But who is most impacted by the price of gasoline? It is the working class. They have to pay for gasoline ... and this increase means that a far greater proportion of their income is going to be spent on just getting to work. And that means that less of their income is available for food for their family, for clothing for their family, and for charitable contributions to those that could use the help.

The rise in gasoline prices ... which can be tied directly to regulatory changes made in the past two years ... is a cruel tax on the poor.

Source of the chart: Gasoline Price History

Thursday, April 21, 2011

The ugly truth

The pro-choice crowd decries common-sense limits on abortion. They say that any limit will harm women. But the fallacy is that very few abortions are performed for the "health of the mother." They are performed for convenience.

Abortion For Convenience

That sounds so harsh. So cold. So selfish and heartless.

That's because it is.

When a woman goes to an abortion clinic that will kill her unborn child so that she can finish school, then it is for her convenience. When she consents to the killing of her unborn child because she realizes that the father is not the man she wants in her life for the next two decades, then it is for her convenience. When she pays someone to kill her unborn child because she "isn't ready to raise a child," then it is for her convenience.

It is not for her health.
It is not because she was impregnated by a rapist or as a result of incest.

It is because she cares more about herself than she does about the life she is ending.