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AP:
WASHINGTON – The Obama administration has decided to release 30 million barrels of oil from the U.S. Strategic Petroleum Reserve as part of a broader international effort to pump more 60 million barrels onto the world market over the next month.

U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu said the release of oil is a response to oil supply disruptions caused by turmoil in the Middle East and North Africa, including Libya.

The administration said the uprising in Libya has resulted in a loss of about 1.5 million barrels of oil a day. The release comes as the United States approaches a period of high energy use in July and August.

In a statement released by the White House, Energy Secretary Steven Chu said the release of oil was directly related to a loss of production from Libya.

“We are taking this action in response to the ongoing loss of crude oil due to supply disruptions in Libya and other countries and their impact on the global economic recovery,” said Energy Secretary Steven Chu.  “As we move forward, we will continue to monitor the situation and stand ready to take additional steps if necessary.”

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Comment Preferences

  •  question is... (7+ / 0-)

    will the oil be refined in the USA and sold in the USA, or will it be put up to the highest bidder on the world market?

    If you tell the truth, you don’t have to remember anything. - Mark Twain

    by MA Liberal on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 07:32:02 AM PDT

  •  Yay! I can still run my Hummer for cheap! (9+ / 0-)

    And tonight, for dinner we are having boiled seed corn.

    Sometimes a .sig is just a .sig.

    by rhubarb on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 07:32:41 AM PDT

  •  Woohoo (7+ / 0-)

    Another great investment into our energy independence!!!

    Republicans: Taking the country back ... to the 19th century

    by yet another liberal on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 07:33:35 AM PDT

  •  this won't make gas cheaper (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Pozzo, AnnieR, phonegery

    It seems to be going down on it's own. It seems more symbolic like the Adm is trying at least.

    •  this will make gas cheaper (10+ / 0-)

      at least in the short term.

      I view it as good timing, since oil and gas prices have been slowly falling, this will give them a little shove.

      If gas can get back down to ~$3, it will greatly help the economy pick up.    

      •  It will also help Mr. Obama get votes. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        hmi, Jerry056
      •  the Overton window passing before our eyes (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        phonegery, midnight lurker, Jeff Y

        There's no practical reason why this should improve gas prices: we've known (or at least been told) for quite some time that supply isn't the issue (and didn't OPEC say that just a few months ago, too?)--refineries aren't working at full capacity now for any number of reasons.

        But if supply isn't the issue (and I don't think it is; I think it's speculation unrelated to supply shortages), why would adding to the supply impact prices? Yes, it may--but only to get us used to the idea that high prices = "must drill" situations (so we won't tap into the "emergency" reserves). Drill, baby, drill ... knock the tops off mountains, kill off a few caribou ...

         I guess I'm not at all convinced that speculators will throw their ball gloves on the ground and stomp on them before picking up their toys and going home to pout over their suddenly-missing future profits; my feeling is it's more about the perception of a supply shortage that can be "solved" by digging/drilling and an effort to roll back those restrictions. In that case, there's no link between prices and output and prices will continue to rise as long as we continue to provide demand.

        Just my 2 cents.

        •  Of Course It Is Speculation (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Jeff Y

          First, for perspective:
          1) Obama proposes to release 30 million barrels of oil over some period of time.
          2) U.S. consumption of oil is about 18-20 million barrels per day.
          3) World consumption of oil is about 100-110 million barrels per day.
          4) The oil presently in the Strategic Reserve cost less than the oil that will have to be purchased to replace it.

          If the delivered price of petroleum products goes down in response to the release, it has nothing to do with supply-and-demand.  It could just as well go up.

          Allowing speculators to play their games should not be a strategic objective of the U.S. Government.

          "Facts are meaningless. You could use facts to prove anything even remotely true." -- H. Simpson

          by midnight lurker on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 11:02:17 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  pure politics (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      hmi, phonegery, WillR, Jeff Y

      As you say, the prices are already going down.. so how can the Obama admin take credit for it?  Release the oil!

      Ok.. maybe that's a bit cynical, even for me.  But I see no real world reason to do so.  That's 2 1/2 days worth of imported oil.  And everyone's been crying there is no shortage anyway!

      •  Sure it is. the GOP is doing everything they (8+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        TomFromNJ, jalenth, AnnieR, GMFORD, askew, sja, Matt Z, Jeff Y

        can to subvert the economy.

        'Bout time the Obama Admin starts doing everything it can to get it juiced.

        Hopefully more of these little things to come. Like spending money on projects to get Americans back to work.

        Notice: This Comment © 2011 ROGNM

        by ROGNM on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 07:54:21 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  And not just American politics (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        midnight lurker, Victor Laslo, Jeff Y

        Seems like Saudi Arabia might have a hand in this, too... at least if this article from yesterday is to be believed.

        Today the Wall Street Journal has a fascinating piece describing a speech given this month by Saudi Prince Turki Al-Faisal. The prince, speaking to a group of U.S. and British servicemen at an airbase near London, explained that Saudi Arabia was so concerned about Iran's continued march toward attaining nuclear weapons that it was considering opening its oil spigots and swamping the world with oil in the interest of gutting Tehran's government revenue

        But don't forget that most men without property would rather protect the possibility of becoming rich, than face the reality of being poor. (1776)

        by banjolele on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 08:52:58 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Is someone drinking our milkshake? (6+ / 0-)

    Just asking.

    Take the fight to them. Don't let them bring it to you. - Harry S Truman

    by jgoodfri on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 07:35:12 AM PDT

  •  This is bringing a pillow to a knife fight. (6+ / 0-)

    Another technocratic swipe at an endemic problem---energy---exacerbated by inept policy leadership, a rabid teabaggerist anti-science opposition, and banksters/speculators unhindered by even the most modest regulation.

    A trifecta of stoopid.

    Look for the markets to yawn and go right back tomorrow to jacking up the price of everything associated with oil.

    I look forward to the 2012 campaign commercials: "We kind of sort of tried a few modest things that had almost no possibility of seriously addressing the problems."

  •  More and more it looks like Peak Oil (6+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ssmt, Andhakari, jm214, Crider, damfino, EthrDemon

    Right now!  Not in another 20 years, not even in another 10.

    Oil production plateaued in 2004, and since then there have not been significant new supplies brought online.  What supplies are being brought online require significantly more energy and money to extract - one only has to look at deepwater drilling, oil sands, and the artificial islands being built by Saudi Arabia.

    Keep your eyes open and check out this article on maximizing your mpg.

    •  Not really (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      bawbie, Pozzo, askew

      Peak oil or near = $200 plus a barrel. Presently we are under $100 and going down.

      •  It's not about price, it's about production (6+ / 0-)

        There'll be plenty of price fluctuations, but production is an entirely different matter.  Peak Oil is specifically about production.

        •  Sure (0+ / 0-)

          Because oil is given for free to anyone passing through a well. Compare to something that really is scarce like the rare earths markets

          •  I may be wrong but you appear to (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            asinine, damfino

            be confusing quite a few things in this thread.  Peak oil is about production not price (as ssmt pointed out) and rare earths are NOT rare it's just that China has a virtual monopoly on the mining of them due to their lower costs of production and disregard for the environmental damage they do when mining.

            Bottom-line: IMO, this is a crappy decision by Obama as it is purely political.  With that said, it's not completely unheard of for a politician to do something for purely political reasons.

            We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them. Albert Einstein

            by theotherside on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 08:15:57 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  I thought it was also about the size of a finite, (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          asinine

          almost exhausted "resource," which we all have been doing what God wants us to do by using it up just as fast as we can to keep Him from getting really pissed off at us when He returns any day now and sees that we have not used what He Gave us, and about how a few of us, blessed among the Elect, show God's sign of blessing and anointing (with oil) by getting very, very prosperous.

          "Is that all there is?" Peggy Lee.

          by jm214 on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 07:50:55 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  ...then you'd also be wrong. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Iberian

          World Oil Supply has been climbing steadily for years and set a production record September 2010 (EIA, no 2011 figures yet)

          •  Huh, that's funny (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Odysseus

            The IEA reported in November 2010 that oil production had peaked in 2006.  To be fair, I don't think that report accounted for the latest 2010 data, which came on the heels of a demand crash in 2009.

            We can argue about whether it the actual "peak" occurred already is about to happen, but we're already at the point where supply can not keep up with demand.  There's simply not enough new production coming online to keep pace with the increase, hence the consistently high oil prices.

            •  "Conventional Crude Oil" (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              asinine, Iberian

              Unconventional oil resources have greatly increased in recent years.

              EIA data is here, for the curious

              We can argue about whether it the actual "peak" occurred already is about to happen, but we're already at the point where supply can not keep up with demand.  There's simply not enough new production coming online to keep pace with the increase, hence the consistently high oil prices.

              We're at higher place on the supply-demand curve than we have been previously, as demand has increased somewhat faster than supply.   That's not really anything exceptional, supply of oil has never been unlimited, even during gluts decades ago.

              No one really denies that global oil production will one day peak, but timing is everything, between it being a disaster and it being a footnote.

              •  Yes (0+ / 0-)

                And if prices go up, something unavoidable it the resource was so scarce, they will do the tar sands to the max, they drill in the Marianas trench or under the White house if need be.

                Peak oil is a moving target, particular;y when demand is also a moving target. You have to stick to the price of oil,that anyhow is already sold in futures.

          •  Please re-read what I said (0+ / 0-)

            I simply stated Peak Oil is about production, not price.  I didn't state whether we've peaked or not.  

      •  Price is no indicator of peak oil (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        asinine, hmi, damfino

        production is.

      •  that's actually a common misconception (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        damfino

        Demand has been fluctuating quite a bit.  A lot of people thought that demand would continue to grow regardless of oil price, but it turns out that a lot of oil demand is price dependent.  The EIA estimates that American gasoline consumption may have peaked in 2007, and with prices as high as they are this isn't likely to change.  So, supply stagnates, demand grows and forces up prices, then demand crashes leading to a price crash, and now we're experiencing the market as it tries to find a new stable set point with stagnant supply in the face of increasing demand.

        Besides, we're still at the plateau, we have yet to experience a drop in oil supply.  There's still a lot of questions as to how long we can maintain this plateau and the slope of the eventual decline.

        •  Uh (0+ / 0-)

          So clearly "peak oil" is  a silly benchmark, artificial in its setting, what only maters is price

          •  I'd disagree (0+ / 0-)

            The high oil prices exacerbated the 2008 economic crash, and high oil prices now are inhibiting recovery.  Price comes out of a relationship between supply and demand, and peak oil says that demand growth will lead to price increases in the absence of supply growth.  These price increases will lead to demand dropping.  In a perfectly efficient economy there would be no boom/bust, just a steadily rising price, but modern economic markets are still plagued with inaccurate pricing mechanisms.

            "Peak Oil" simply talks about the supply side of the economic equation, it takes a little more effort to see how the supply side impacts those things that are more directly observable to us.

            •  OK (0+ / 0-)

              But the supply depends on price, if the price of oil was higher the supply will grow because there is oil out there right now that is not that cost effective to extract. When the barrel goes over $120 it will be.

              The fight is to keep the price low enough so alternative energies are not promoted hastily, but other producers want the price high now. So at the end what matters here is the price during the transition

              •  Supply in this case has nothing to do with price, (0+ / 0-)

                other than to affect the pace at which we use it up. The term "Peak Oil" is used to define when the actual supply of this finite resource--in other words, the amount of oil itself in the ground--can no longer be seen as increasing or plateauing, regardless of human efforts to retrieve it.
                Let's say there are 1 million barrels of oil in existence, and we've found and withdrawn 499,999 barrels of it. The peak will be passed after we get that next barrel out of the ground, irrespective of how much that barrel costs anyone.

        •  Cars take up so freaking much room. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          damfino

          We are set up so no one can walk or ride a bike, every house means 4 cars on the road at least.  When we learn how much room we have without cars, kids will wonder why we even had them.

          . . . from Julie, Julia. "Oh, well. Boo-hoo. Now what?"

          by 88kathy on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 08:00:07 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  I don't think you have it quite right (0+ / 0-)

          A report came out a couple of months ago about the elasticity of demand for gasoline and I was rather shocked at how inelastic it has been.  In other words, for America as a whole we don't shift our driving patterns much based on the price of gasoline and thus we tend to use about the same amount no matter what.

          Of course, the Great Recession has lowered demand and so I'm not arguing that we haven't consumed less since 2008 (when prices increased greatly) but it had more to due with the recession and not the price of gasoline.

          As a person who favors raising taxes on energy in general and gas in particular I found it surprising and disappointing that demand for gas wasn't more elastic.

          I'll see if I can find that report and post a link.

          We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them. Albert Einstein

          by theotherside on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 08:28:53 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  i expect this is because we are (0+ / 0-)

            wealthy enough to have disposable income to shift. The elasticity is probably visable in the third world.

            •  Sounds reasonable. (0+ / 0-)

              Of course, I thought it sounded reasonable that demand for gas would be more elastic!

              Anyway, here is an excerpt from a report I found.  I'm not sure if this was the report that I saw the article on recently or not but it says:

              We find that the short-run price elasticity of U.S. gasoline demand is significantly more inelastic today than in previous decades. This result is robust and consistent across several empirical models and functional forms. The observed change provides evidence of a structural change in the U.S. market for transportation fuel and may reflect shifts in land-use, social or vehicle characteristics during the past several decades.

              and:

              The short-run price elasticities differ considerably: and range from -0.034 to -0.077 during 2001 to 2006, versus -0.21 to -0.34 for 1975 to 1980.

              Anyway, this one report can be found at:

              http://www.econ.ucdavis.edu/...

              I did find another article that said that reports about elasticity are all over the map and so I guess we have to take it with a grain of salt.

              We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them. Albert Einstein

              by theotherside on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 09:19:17 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  Time is required to adjust to price (0+ / 0-)

            Reducing demand by switching to higher mileage cars, living closer to work, installing insulation take time for people to adopt.  Longer term switching may include electric cars, cars & trucks  that run on Compressed Natural Gas, etc

            So the demand becomes more elastic over time.

            The most important way to protect the environment is not to have more than one child.

            by nextstep on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 10:38:31 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Yep, all true. (0+ / 0-)

              That is why we can't simply wait for the market to signal scarcity.  We need to estimate, as well as possible, when peak will be here and then plan 20 years in advance to make the changes as painless as possible.  Of course, I think peak is here or will be shortly and so I favor more aggressive raising of taxes on energy and more aggressive tax cuts on income to offset those increases.  To be more clear I favor taxing consumption more than taxing work and we should slowly change each to acknowledge the world we are living in (or about to enter).

              My thinking has also led me to buy a Volt so that I can walk the talk a little more and reduce my oil consumption by over 90 percent.  It's not a perfect solution but it is supporting a step in the right direction.

              We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them. Albert Einstein

              by theotherside on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 02:32:49 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

  •  I thought Libya provided oil to Europe and not the (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    pot, hmi

    US, that oil has nothing to do with our involvement in these thingamajigs, but now?  Now we release oil?  Gas prices here in north Texas have leveled out for the past week, I must be missing something.

    Never kick a fresh turd on a hot day. Harry Truman

    by temptxan on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 07:38:55 AM PDT

  •  I've heard a lot of conservatives say that this (10+ / 0-)

    is exactly what we should be doing.  Now that Obama's done it, I imagine they'll say he's "disarming 'Merica and giving in to the Islamic threat" or something.

    Join us at the Amateur Radio Group. Serving the Left Side of the Dial since 2011.

    by briefer on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 07:39:13 AM PDT

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

    Assuming this is mostly symbolic, in which case it's rather early for it. Maybe he hopes it becomes a debate question for republicans

  •  I think this will help the economy a bit and (10+ / 0-)

    is a good move.

    CitizenX: "If the republicans were in charge GM & Chrysler would be dead and Osama bin Laden would be alive."

    by TomP on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 07:41:32 AM PDT

  •  bad decision (13+ / 0-)

    This reserve is supposed to be for national emergencies aka complete disruption of distribution channels and we can't get oil any other way.  In other words as a last resort.  To use it as an economic pressure release valve is wrong and only rewards and encourages speculators and Big oil to game the reserve as a bonus pool.

    --Mr. President, you have to earn my vote every day. Not take it for granted. --

    by chipoliwog on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 07:45:07 AM PDT

    •  It might make a few speculators go broke. (0+ / 0-)

      It will fill the pockets of others. It will help pump a little more carbon into the atmosphere and win a few votes.

      "I almost died for the international monetary system; what the hell is that?" ~ The In-laws

      by Andhakari on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 07:53:18 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Piss poor way to go after speculators (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        wsexson

        If Obama wants to go after speculators, then go after them.  Regulate the market.  But don't piss away our oil reserves for a fleeting relief from speculators.

        "When I was an alien, cultures weren't opinions" ~ Kurt Cobain, Territorial Pissings

        by Subterranean on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 12:20:37 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Globally .. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Andhakari, Ashaman, damfino

    we are burning oil faster than extracting it from the ground.

    Demand is growing.

    And, Libya or no Libya -- the challenge is long-term supply.

    Now, wouldn't it be tremendous if this $3+ billion of oil release were dedicated to investments to reduce America's reliance on oil.

    Blogging regularly at Get Energy Smart NOW! for a sustainable energy future.

    by A Siegel on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 07:45:10 AM PDT

  •  All the Oil Indices (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    suspiciousmind

    are down in the stock market.

    $OIX: -23.14
    $XOI: -35.4848

  •  Gas should be expensive (7+ / 0-)

    - it's the only thing that gets us using less and looking towards cleaner vehicles.  I say let the prices go up.

  •  Dem or Republican, I loathe pandering. (6+ / 0-)

    And this is the worst kind of pandering to the lowest common political denominator. The only upside is an exceedingly brief brake on gasoline prices.

    The downsides?
    -Removing some of the insurance against a real shortage
    -Raising expectations for further pointless but popular panders
    -Further loss of credibility
    -One more distraction from a real energy policy
    -Reducing the desperately needed incentive for fuel efficiency provided by high gasoline prices
    -Further reducing the likelihood of vitally needed increase in taxes on petroleum products

  •  High gas prices killed the Hummer... (4+ / 0-)

    and brought on a surge of hybrid purchases, an increase in the use of public transporation and high density housing around urban areas.

    In other words, what slowed the economy in the short term a few years ago prompted a natural - and very welcome - long term change in our behavior towards more efficient use of our resources. It was capitalism in action.

    And now here comes the government again, using emergency supplies to artificially lower prices. I understand people are hurting and the economy needs a jolt - just wish Obama would consider different tools in its arsenal other than manipulating market prices to do it.

    •  green will come (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Dillonfence, GMFORD

      all by itself when it is the better economic choice.

      Trying to rush its birth via taxes and subsidies will just make us less competitive in the world.

      Let other governments force green. That will drive up their costs (and lower ours as oil demand is depressed).

      I expect we have a few humps before that really happens. Higher crude prices will make new sources of oil profitable to extract holding back price increases for a while.

      Things will get exciting when another tech becomes competitive with oil. When consumers start switching en masse, oil demand will fall as will prices. could be huge price volitilty when we get there.

      •  That was some serious wisdom there (0+ / 0-)

        "Let other governments force green."

        Breathe in some air man (and take it for granted).

        Republicans: Taking the country back ... to the 19th century

        by yet another liberal on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 08:19:49 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  I cannot disagree with this line of thinking (0+ / 0-)

        strongly enough.  It's analogous to saying we shouldn't turn the Titanic until we see the iceberg or that we shouldn't prepare for an approaching Cat 5 hurricane until the winds are at least 85 mph in our neighborhood.

        The Hirsch Report said if we had 20 years to prepare for peak oil not much economic damage will result.  10 years and it will be difficult but doable if we have a real crash course in making the societal changes.  If we wait until peak we are really screwing ourselves.

        If you even think that that analysis is somewhere in the ballpark of reality than it becomes clear that we should shape markets now (well, years ago) to properly make the shift that we ALL KNOW has to be made.

        May I also suggest you bookmark theoildrum.com and get a lot better analysis from people a lot smarter than me.

        We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them. Albert Einstein

        by theotherside on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 08:43:19 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  those analogies (0+ / 0-)

          might work if there was some specific moment/event to be avoided (an iceberg). But there isn't so i don't think they work.

          The transition away from oil will be a decades long process that will occur naturally as prices move and technology evolves.

          I think that there are also great costs to moving to green too soon.

          such as...

          the first green techs will be surpassed by later generations. Some of the earliest cars were steam powered. It would have been a colossal blunder to go all in on steam powered cars.

          If green doesn't become competitive pricewise with oil, people won't switch and the dollars spent will be wasted.

          •  We definitely view it differently (0+ / 0-)

            I think that what is represented in the top graph on this link is a tremendously important event in the history of mankind.

            http://en.wikipedia.org/...

            But because we can't easily change cars, change jobs, change where we live, change what we eat and we can't fix an economy where our discretionary spending vanishes in an incredibly short span of time we can't just hope and pray that market economics carry us through.

            And as far as betting on a single technology to get us through, your point is taken and that is why you need broad macroeconomic changes in energy policy to promote a wide variety of new ways of approaching the coming energy crunch.  Don't bet just on CFLs but create a market where CFLs, LEDs, OLEDs or even newer technology can make work better than what we have now.  Taxes on electricity in combination with "X Prize" type incentives does that.

            Or on the transportation side, increase gas taxes so that EVs, EREVs, PHEVs, fuel cell, mass transportation and freight rail all are given boosts in the competitive market and let human nature and market forces guide us to the more efficient and sustainable way of doing things.

            Finally, PV and wind are nearly cost competitive and will be so within this decade.  They both could have been cost competitive years ago with the proper tax and subsidy policies and America could be the leader in both fields but we aren't and it's because they were both left to market forces.  The point being you need far-sighted policies to make green (long lead time) technologies cost competitive and simply waiting for a huge escalation in energy costs to fix this balance is a conservative (and frankly dumb, no offense) idea.

            Be well.

            We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them. Albert Einstein

            by theotherside on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 10:14:46 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  he's doing the right thing (0+ / 0-)

      Everybody knows that the reserves are a finite supply.  The gas prices got high enough before the reserves were tapped that people will think twice about mpg before buying their next car.

      It's clear that this is temporary and we have to get off oil.  A temporary respite may help.

  •  Why not dump it all? (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Scott Wood, damfino, Subterranean, wsexson

    Seriously, if this is the basis for taking oil out, you've got to wonder what the true justification for having the thing is, especially as this kind of action acts as a counter-weight to development of alternative energy markets.

    Big boo and hiss.

    LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

    by dinotrac on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 08:00:45 AM PDT

  •  Are we winning the future yet? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Magnifico, wsexson
  •  Bad Idea (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Scott Wood, damfino

    Something worse than this Libya situation may arise and then what?

    Besides gas prices have been falling for a month now.

    Stuck Between Stations : Thoughts from a bottomless pool of useless information.

    by Answer Guy on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 08:04:11 AM PDT

  •  This is roughly (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    damfino

    2 days worth of oil consumption in the U.S. How remarkably useful.

  •  Well this is good news it it manages to lower (0+ / 0-)

    gas prices at the pumps. Gas prices has a direct effect on our shops sales and others in retail.

  •  Food prices. (0+ / 0-)

    Food is delivered by trucks which run on gas.  When gas prices are high food prices are high.

    I'm glad our President is doing something to help ordinary folks stretch their food dollars.

  •  Scares speculators (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    VickiL

    If Obama truly believes that speculators caused oil prices to go up (and maybe even to remain at a higher level than they should be right now), then this is a good move. The last thing a speculator wants is to know that the government will actually act to cut off their speculation before it gets ridiculous.

    With the economic recovery stumbling (at best), it is important to try to bring gas prices down some (not only gas, but food and of course some energy costs). This may be a way to wring the speculators out of the market for a good long while and allow the economy to start moving upward again.

    For those who says we need higher gas prices NOW in order to get a green revolution going I say, I hope you are happy with President Romney and his energy policy.

  •  Next up (0+ / 0-)

    We will force them to release some He2 from the strategic helium reserves.  

    From now on, it's called "Freedom Kissing!" "Wolverines!!!!!!!!!!!!!"

    by otto on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 09:28:36 AM PDT

  •  60 million barrels is a drop in the bucket (0+ / 0-)

    The world now uses about 88 million barrels a day.  The US alone uses about 20 million barrels a day.  Thus, the reserve is releasing enough oil for three days worth of US usage.  While this should result in a very small reduction in the cost of gas at the pump, the reduction will be very brief.

  •  To those claiming the Libya op is "about oil", (0+ / 0-)

    were it really about oil, the world would've stood by and allowed Gadaffi to do his slaughter, crush the rebellion, and therefore stabilize oil production/shipment from that country.  That the world did not stand by and allow that to happen is because the world decided that the lives saved were more important than maintaining stable oil production in Libya.

    I bring that up here because the diary includes quotes about Libya's oil production.

  •  A good move by our President (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Matt Z

    The "Arab Spring" has created and is creating a lot of uncertainty about oil supplies generally and a shortage in output due to the shut down of Lybian oil. That in turn has driven up oil prices and continues to keep them high, which in turn drives up gasoline, heating oil, etcetera prices.

    And that has had a negative effect on the economy as people have less discretionary money to spend. Since the Republicans are fighting actively to bring the economy down, the tools available to President Obama to reverse the damage are extremely limted. Takiing oil from the Reserve is one thing the President can do that the Republicans can't block and that will definitely help stimulate the economy.

    Yes, the Reserves will eventually need to be refilled. But just like with the economy as a whole, there is a time to borrow and a time to pay back. By priming the economic pump, President Obama increases the likelihood of a more quickly improving economy. One the economy has spun up and a bunch more taxpayers have been created, it will be a simple matter to refill the reserves, albeit one with a cost.

    What would you rather have, a job with some debt to repay at interest, or less debt but no job at all? Kind of a no-brainer, wouldn't you say?

    It's the same for the country as a whole.

  •  A band-aid over a hatchet wound (0+ / 0-)

    Why doesn't the Obama administration take action to dismantle the speculative markets responsible for driving up oil and gas prices?  It's the right thing to do, and it's the political equivalent of a nuclear weapon!  He'd have the GOP fighting against lower gas prices if the democrats played their cards right.  

    Instead we get this passive move to shave a few cents off oil and gas prices.  Tinkering instead of the needed overhaul.  The difference between a competent president and a historic president.

    "When I was an alien, cultures weren't opinions" ~ Kurt Cobain, Territorial Pissings

    by Subterranean on Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 12:15:03 PM PDT

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