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Tomorrow, Vice-President Cheney is off to the Middle East. Part of his agenda will likely be a stopover in Saudi Arabia to try and convince the Saudis to increase oil production and provide some easing on world prices.  Charmer that he is, I'm sure Cheney will succeed and we'll all be back to the good old days before you know it.

The irony here, and the thing I find interesting, is that this little bit of groveling before the sheiks comes from a member of the party that always talks about the genius of the free market and the sanctity of private property.  OK, so both those forces are in play here - hey, it's their oil, beneath their land - why shouldn't they charge, or keep production levels, at whatever the market will bear, or for that matter, whatever the hell they want?

None of the oil-producing countries need a lesson in economics. Their model to maximize profitability can be captured in a simple spreadsheet, and may be one of the purest examples of supply and demand around.  

What will Cheney say? "Well, you know, if prices go too high, that'll push the United States into a deep recession, and then prices will go down due to lower demand."  I picture the Saudis pausing, maybe suppressing a laugh, and then very calmly replying: "Yes, we understand Mr. Vice President, but we, uh, have other buyers."  

What should oil cost? Whatever the market will bear.  They have it, we need it. Actually, to reflect the true cost of importing oil to this country, including the need to maintain an outsize military and the human cost of using it in endless wars, the price of gas at the pump should be much, much higher than it is already.

We have done really nothing in more than 30 years to break our foreign-oil addiction. Nothing. So here we sit, more at the mercy of uncaring market forces than ever before.

Good luck, Mr. Vice-President.  But you're wasting your time.

Originally posted to newwvdem on Sat Mar 15, 2008 at 07:29 AM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  They may not be able to pump more oil.nt (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    corvo, Johnny Rapture

    CHRISTIAN, n. One who believes that the New Testament is a divinely inspired book admirably suited to the spiritual needs of his neighbor. A. Bierce

    by irate on Sat Mar 15, 2008 at 07:30:58 AM PDT

    •  Hopefully there are no ducks and or duck blinds (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      irate, corvo

      in the Royal Kingdom..? Dubai-Kuwaite-Saudi-Emirates are shining example of gee w bush spreading deomcracies thruout the Middle East..Did youse vote for the King, why, no I voted for the Prince..Duck !

      "Better a little late, than a little never"..Doctor Julian Winston

      by Johnny Rapture on Sat Mar 15, 2008 at 07:42:11 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Cheney wants oil cheaper? (3+ / 0-)

    In a word: no.

  •  I don't think he's groveling at all. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    More likely he's rallying support, or at least complicit silence, for an "even harder line" against Iran--one that might involve war.

    •  Hmm... (0+ / 0-)

      ... or another possibility is that there may be a deal struck with both elements, such as, lower the price per barrel and we'll contain, perhaps weaken, the Shiites in Iraq/Iran.

      •  more likely... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        make sure we have a steady supply at todays price and let us take out Iran and you (the Saudis) don't say/do anything to get in our way.
        Win for the Saudis - same high profits - and win for dick - he gets his war on.

        "George Bush was a mean crook from Texas. He had no friends and nobody in Washington wanted to be seen with him..." HST

        by vet24 on Sun Mar 16, 2008 at 09:16:55 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Oil $20 a bbl when Cheny/bush took office... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tmo, corvo, Johnny Rapture

    I hardly think it's the price that bothers them.
    They just don't want any fecal matter hitting rotating blades before Jan. 21, 2009.
    Cheney will fail just like dumbya did, and the severe recession will be officially recognized by June of 2008.
    Dumbya's legacy; two recessions, and two lost wars.

    St. Ronnie was an asshole.

    by manwithnoname on Sat Mar 15, 2008 at 07:46:51 AM PDT

    •  Hoplessness-hate-fear and predudice (0+ / 0-)

      on evury front enveloping our small speck of a planet..The Uniter, the ignorant neanderthal done fuked up..No surprise there..Poor excuase for a Man, let alone president of the U.S...Doesnt say much for the hallowed Ivy League except legacy droppings are hazardous..It's amazing how one man, one administration could possibly destroy the world in 8 years..Klatu Baratu Nikto

      "Better a little late, than a little never"..Doctor Julian Winston

      by Johnny Rapture on Sat Mar 15, 2008 at 07:57:45 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Cheney is more afraid of the Saudis (0+ / 0-)

    than the people of the United States, who supposedly "hired" him....he has contempt and schemes for his own people and country..but no one dare call him an unpatriotic S.O.B.....

  •  Always say "Dick" when you use Cheney in a tag. (0+ / 0-)

    "The road to gas chambers starts when good people find excuses to justify torture and murder. Feinstein and Schumer are enablers."- Larry Johnson -8.25, -6.21

    by Jacques on Sat Mar 15, 2008 at 09:36:32 AM PDT

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