The Cost of Oil and Gasoline
A lot of folks are writing about why the prices of oil and gasoline are so high.
bush has explained that supply and demand is driving this price increase, citing increasing demand from China and India.
And that's certianly a factor. But there is another.
There are simply a lot more dollars in circulation now, then when gasoline was selling for a $1.00/gallon. So it's no wonder that the price of oil is inflating.
The US government has spent six years inflating the money supply to drive it's own debt as the bush administration goes on the fastest paced spending spree ever. Money has also been created to finance home loans to drive home values into the stratosphere. On top of that we have cashout refinancing which was used to cover credit card debt. Then the credit card debt was run back up.
All of this money, flooding the market, going to Walmart, Halliburton and God knows where else, is in circulation in the international markets. Other countries, awash with dollars, are bidding against us and each other for a finite supply of oil. They are using our inflating dollar supply to buy oil. So the price of oil keeps going up.
Since the Iraq war started, the monthly price of the war has tripled from about $20 billion a month, to over $60 billion a month. Is it no wonder then that the price of oil has more than doubled?
All of the money saved by buying chinese goods has gone to making China a nation flush with US dollars. They can bid as high as they need to, to keep buying all the oil they want. In effect, the money saved by shopping at Walmart, ends up driving prices higher at the pump.
So while we are borrowing our way to prosperity, the money we create from thin air goes to create foreign jobs and drive up the price of oil. In the mean time, back in the US, it's time for belt tightening as we begin to pay the price for living on debt.
The US government will continue to inflate it's way deeper into debt. If current trends continue, the cost of the war in Iraq in three years will be $180 billion a month. Gasoline will sell for $9.00/gal and oil on the international market will be $210/barrel. Pay for the average American worker will decline some, to cover costs.
But on the International front, other nations will continue to increase their share of consumption as the inflating dollars will go to them first. They can then use them to out bid us for oil.
Before bush gave us this new level of globalization, the US drove the price of oil and US demand helped determine how much a barrel of oil goes for. If prices got high, American consumers would buy less, go bankrupt, conserve, and the price would go down. Now, demand is also driven by China and India. So unless these nations also see a recession, demand will stay high if the US backs off. In fact, any weakening of demand by the US will probably be replaced permanently by other nations.
Americans are just going to have to earn less and spend more. It;s the price of trying to externalize costs by inflating the dollar supply to make the rich, richer.
But its not all bad news. The bush family and friends are in the oil industry. They are selling us oil and gasoline at rising prices. It's good times for them.
"We need an energy policy that encourages consumption." - President George Bush II