Time for President Obama to Focus on Rising Gas Prices

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

gas

President Obama has been busy of late. What with trips to Cairo, Egypt to deliver a speech designed to assuage the Muslim world that America isn’t at war with Islam. This was followed by a stop at the American Cemetary in Normandy, France to commemorate the 65th anniversary of the D-Day offensive in World War II.

But while Mr. Obama was busy preparing for, and participating in these world events, something ominous has been happening at home.

Gas prices have risen 41 days in a row and now stand at a national average of almost $2.62 a gallon. This is a sharp increase from the low of $1.62 a gallon that prevailed at the end of last year.

Refinery problems are producing especially high prices in the Midwest, a region of the country already reeling from the recession. Michigan, the state with the highest unemployment rate — 12.9 percent, is now paying the highest gasoline prices in the nation: an average $2.93 a gallon. This does not bode well for any economic recover.

Americans understandably fear a return to last summer’s historic highs of $4 and more a gallon. Economists say the recent increases are a growing economic problem and may result in greater overall inflation. Or worse, slow or even stop what small glimmers of a recovery we have started to see.

President Obama and his economic team need to understand what analysts have understood all along. The current price increases in a barrel of crude have nothing to do with supply — far from it. The increases are being driven solely by investor expectations of an U.S. economic recovery. Mr. Obama cannot remain silent on the sidelines while the investor class returns this nation to $4 a gallon gas.

This entry was posted in Gas Prices, National Security, News, President Barack Obama, U.S. Economy and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

15 Responses to Time for President Obama to Focus on Rising Gas Prices

  1. Stephan Iversonn says:

    I think you’re 100% correct, Christopher.

    Rising gas prices will be disastrous to any hopes for an economic recovery. Last year’s $4.50 prices were pivotal in creating a much deeper and protracted recession.

    If the investor class is speculating up the price of crude today, then the president can play a role in stopping this before it gets out of control. The White House can make it clear they will push for special taxes on oil and energy speculator profits. This will discourage Wall Street from burdening the American consumer with grief at the pump.

    The question remains, does Obama have the cajones to step up his game and take on the investor class?

  2. bradfrmphnx says:

    I agree with you Christopher. And you pointed out the true problem with the investor class. We don’t need the rich getting richer at the expense of struggling Americans. This also clearly shows that America needs an alternative to fossil fuels.

  3. libhomo says:

    In the long term, gas will get much more expensive. The real solution is a massive expansion of public transportation.

  4. Rachel says:

    The USA has lagged behind Europe and Asia with regard to fast and convenient public transportation for as long as I can remember. Last summer, when gas prices were nearing $5 a gallon, my father told me in the 1970’s, I think Nixon was in office, there were calls for high speed trains between city pairs. New York and Washington, San Francisco and Los Angeles, and Dallas and Houston. Japan had launched the Bullet rail system. But alas, Detroit and the US oil industry lobbied the plan out of favor.

  5. Joe in Colorado says:

    Until public transportation goes where people live, I don’t see it catching on unless you live in New York, Boston, Washington, Chicago or San Francisco. At best, public transportation in the U.S. will always be just another option.

  6. DMason says:

    I used to take the bus to work when I lived in Seattle but now I live in the San Fernando Valley and the LA Metro Bus out here is non-existent. So, I drive to work each day, alone in my Honda Civic.

  7. bradfrmphnx says:

    The City of Phoenix has a Light Rail System, and a pretty good busing system. All of which cost the taxpayers millions. I don’t think mass transit will work here as far as a solution to gasoline prices. Americans love their independence and their highways. Since the car was invented we have loaded up the family and gone for a “drive” or a vacation. Its now in our DNA. The alternative will be energy sources that are not going to hurt our planet, and that we can create here at home.

  8. JollyRoger says:

    Of COURSE mass transit will work here. The “Americans won’t” is a load; we saw that last year, when the mass-transit systems all over the country got overloaded.

    The time has come to start running the trains between the towns again, and the trolleys in town. There is talk of opening up a line between here and the county seat, and I intend to maske use of it as soon as it is available.

  9. Robster says:

    Where I live, there is no hope for public transportation to catch on. No one wants it in their backyard because they don’t want “those” people (like me) over there. That’s the sad truth. I really feel some people would rather exercise their freedoms for $4.50 a gallon than spend $2.50 to travel a few miles on a bus.

  10. bradfrmphnx says:

    “America’s won’t is a load”

    With all due respect what’s a load is the cost of the systems. Phoenix’s Light Rail cost 1.4 Billion dollars. Of which fares only cover 25% of operating costs, let alone the original price tag. Mesa is trying to figure out how it will cover an almost 8 million dollar deficit, and every other city is wondering the same thing. Here’s a link to an article of what other cities besides New York think about paying for something like this.

    http://www.azcentral.com/news/articles/2008/12/09/20081209lrail-money1209.html?&wired

    Just look at the comments at the end of the article. NYC has its mass transit in place already. Its essentially paid for. Most everyone elses isn’t. And the tax payers DON’T want to pay this big of a price tag for something that will never come close to not being a burden. The only reason it was put in place was because we have such a traffic congestion problem.

    Like I said, and to the point of this post was that mass transit is not an alternative to high gas costs. When you have to spend billions to start it up and millions to operate it…exactly HOW is that driving down the cost of gas?

  11. libhomo says:

    bradfrmphnx: When you factor in the cost of Mideast wars for using cars, public transportation is a bargain.

  12. bradfrmphnx says:

    libhomo: Exactly to my point my friend. That is why I am saying we need to produce alternative energy ideas here at home. Ethanol fuels from hemp and algae, not from corn. Deriving energy from solar, and wind power. And whatever else we can come up with to rid us of our addiction to Middle Eastern oil.

    Mass public transportation has its place, I won’t argue that. But I just feel the way to gain independence from high gas prices is to produce our own energy sources. Mass transit just puts the burden of the cost of transportation onto the tax payers, which is just another way of paying for the same thing in a different way.

  13. mpg50 says:

    That’s all nice chit-chat & quite true, but Why Not Take Action & Really DO SOMETHING NOW to help America’s Oil Independence? We can all help ourselves & America today. See: http://MPG50.com

  14. I think gas prices should shoot up to match what they pay in most other countries. I say tax it heavily. These oil companies are bringing in so much revenue…tax it.

  15. myturn says:

    Won’t that tax be paid by us Keisha? The oil companies are already taxed and they pass it on to us.

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