Ft. Lauderdale, Fl USA
but that doesn't have anything to do with creating jobs that harm our country rather than help it.
Ok, let's go there, Ron. You must believe that further oil exploration or opening up new oil fields would harm our country and that providing employment to hundreds of thousands, beneficial as it might be to the economy, would not offset the harm it would do.
What harm? I'm assuming that the harm you refer to is that it would keep us from seeking new sources of energy. My question to that would be....why? What is stopping the government and scientists from working on those new areas right now? The fact that, since there is plenty of oil, they don't give it a high enough priority? Ok, I can buy that....but that simply means they are too short-sighted to see it. You don't seem to be asking them to account for their lack of initiative. You prefer that the citizenry suffer, by way of higher prices, than to hold government responsible. In a period of time with unemployment in the stratosphere, the housing market in the trash can, and people putting up a real struggle to make their paychecks or their savings stretch from week to week, you believe this is the right time for them to pay more and suffer further. Yes, Ron, I know your answer..."Then when is the right time?". I've seen it before. I won't disagree that the right time is now for the government to get serious enough to kick it into high gear and find those alternatives. I disagree that it should take the people suffering to the point of rioting in the streets to get the government to do something. Do I blame Obama from not having come up with alternatives? Yes....along with Bush, Clinton, Reagan, Nixon and every other president that should have been preparing for the eventual oil crisis. I disagree with your "let them eat cake" philosophy toward the general populace, however.
Ok, then. The next question is...would opening up oil drilling in the United States help? I'm no geologist, government worker, oil executive and anyone in that loop. I'm certainly not as knowledgeable as Uncas as to how the whole thing works. I can only speak with the brain of a poet and scratch golfer who looks for a little sense in the whole thing.
It is said that whoever gets the right to drill calls the shots concerning price and where the oil will go. Ok, but, since the oil is in the United States, I'm assuming that these companies would have to have permissions and pay for the right to drill, like in leases, I would assume. Otherwise BP or Venezuela would be up in Alaska drilling right now. If I were the US, those leases would be heavy and go to the high bidders. There would also be restrictions. I lease a house out in Colorado but the lease doesn't give the lessee the right to paint the house purple, knock down the walls, or keep a camel for a pet. We all know that the majority of the cost we pay for gasoline at the pump is federal taxes. Is it so far-fetched to have the monies paid to the country for the right to drill replace or, at least, cut down the taxes on a gallon of gas at the pump? Or would you not trust the government to do that?
Now, what would this increase of oil on the market do to the price of oil? Up or down? If it goes down...less cost to consumers. If it goes up, the percentages the drilling companies pay for the right to drill produces more revenue. Do you say the oil companies would not agree to such agreements? Then we would be no worse off than we are now. I think you know they would, though. Earning a little less is still earning. Would the infusion of oil into the market influence OPEC to raise or lower prices/production?
The next point is security. With what is happening in the middle east today, I consider that to be an important factor. I've seen pictures from WW2 of tanks and heavy equipment stranded in the desert, due to supply lines broken. With all of the oil-supplying countries in the middle east now involved in revolutions, we have no idea which groups will rise to power. What if they are groups that are anit-American and they decide to cut off supplies to the U.S? Is that far-fetched? I don't know. I do know that we are basically at the mercy of the oil-producing countries, with the exception of Canada and our own reserves? In the case of actual war, I would not want to be at that mercy and I don't see that possibility as being that off the wall. ALso, in the case of war, it would be appropriate for the government to assume control of the wells in the interest of national defense.
Those are my pedestrian thoughts. If none of these things were to happen, then the worst thing would be that over 800,000 people would have jobs, that many would be off the unemployment roll, and that much more money would be going to the government in the form of taxes on their earnings. Is that such a bad thing?
Please note that no Obamas were harmed in the construction of this comment.