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Like a 4th of July bottle rocket, our gasoline prices are shooting upward. However, tongue-clucking market analysts tell us there’s nothing we can do about it, for it’s simply the law of supply and demand in action – so suck it up, and pay up.
Supply and demand? The supply of crude oil has risen to its highest level in nearly two decades, even while the demand for gasoline is down dramatically, having fallen to a 10-year low. Supply up, demand down. That’s a classic market formula for cheaper prices at the pump – yet they’ve risen by some 60 cents a gallon in the past two months alone.
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We’re being had by some brand-name dealers. Not Exxon, Chevron, etcetera – but such names as Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, and other Wall Street dealers who place unregulated, speculative bets on the future price of oil. Sound vaguely familiar? Yes, this is the same so-called “dark market” of derivatives and swaps that led to the sub-prime mortgage crash, which then brought down Wall Street and crushed our economy. And, yes, these are the same banksters you and I are bailing out with trillions of our tax dollars.
Yet, here they go again. By pooling money from hedge funds and other large investors, speculators like Goldman and Morgan Stanley have been buying trillions-of-dollars-worth of “oil futures”– which essentially are bets that oil prices will rise to a certain price by a certain date. This massive influx of what amounts to gambling money totally distorts the real value of petroleum. As a CNBC energy analyst reports: “It’s this money flow – rather than the fundamental supply-demand data – that’s driving oil prices higher.”
Every dollar that these Wall Streeters bet on oil prices is a dollar they are not investing in our real economy. They stole from us on our mortgages, and now they’re doing it on gasoline prices. When will Obama and Congress finally crack down on these thieves?
“Why are gas prices rising?” Austin American Statesman,” June 14, 2009.
“Are Wall Street speculators driving up gasoline prices?” www.mcclatchydc.com, May 20, 2009.
“High Gas Prices Could Slow Recovery,” www.nytimes.com, June 9, 2009.
“Congress Must Regulate Energy Markets To Stop Wild Swings in Oil Prices,” www.citizen.org, February 3, 2009.
“Despite Supply Glut, Consumers Face Soaring Gasoline Prices, New Report Finds,” www.consumerfed.org , March 26, 2008.