Gas’n’Go Under

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While driving my hideously fuel-inefficient SUV earlier this week, I noticed the warning light on my instrument cluster alerting me that my gas tank was perilously close to “MSNBC’s primetime ratings.” Since I have access to neither the private jet nor the chauffer-driven limousine Al Gore uses when he leaves one of his multimillion dollar mansions, I pulled into the next gas station.

That’s when I noted the price of a gallon of gasoline starts with a “3.” The last time gas prices were this high, Democrats assured us it was a direct result of George W. Bush’s cozy relationship with “Big and/or Foreign Oil.”

“Since George Bush and Dick Cheney took over as president and vice president, gas prices have doubled… (because) They are too cozy with the oil industry”

California’s senior Senator Barbara Boxer offered that clever canard back in April of 2006. At the time, gas prices at the Exxon station from which she staged her shriekfest were $3.10/gallon, just over 8 cents above where they are right now. And Boxer wasn’t the only Democrat assailing Bush over the plight of the people who pay her fuel bills. According to then-junior Senator from New York Hillary Clinton:

“We are one accident or one terrorist attack away from oil at $100 a barrel!”

Actually, if the terrorists are planning this sort of petroleum-based ploy, it may already be too late. As of Tuesday, the price of a barrel of crude is just under $90, nearly $25 higher than it was while Senators Boxer and Clinton were blaming rising gas prices on the former president. Industry experts predict the price will eclipse $100 within a year.

As is the case with commodities — with the possible exception of Arkansas cattle futures — oil’s price can fluctuate wildly depending on supply. However, the supply of oil and the AVAILABLE supply of oil are not always the same thing. There is the oil which American interests pump out of the ground, then refine into useable products at reasonable profit. There is also oil which is chemically about the same as the American stuff, but is located in countries with names that contain words like “People’s Republic of” or sound like “Jihadistan” or are controlled by fascists like Hugo Chavez.

The first type of oil is fine. It makes your car go, heats your home, and gives liberals something to whine about. The second type of oil requires handing checks with more zeros than the Dailykos.com membership roster to reprobates like Chavez.

But oil is tricky stuff. It hides, either under places where caribou and polar bears pose for Sierra Club calendar shoots, or underneath the ocean, which not only presents a logistical problem, but can make seagulls yucky. When things go wrong, as it did last spring and summer during the Deepwater Horizon nightmare, it can create headaches for everyone from BP oil execs (Tony Hayward is still really, really sorry) to the President of the United States (“did you plug the hole yet, Daddy?”).

Fortunately, we have President Barack Obama and the Democrat Party to protect us. Thanks to a Democrat-backed ban on pretty much every kind of drilling outside the dentist’s office, the Gulf of Mexico is closing in on being clean of every kind of oil except Coppertone. So, it’s back to foreign oil; and $3+/gallon gasoline.

According to Monday’s Wall Street Journal:

“Oil companies are still waiting for approval to drill the first new oil well (in the Gulf of Mexico). Experts now expect the wait to continue until the second half of 2011, and perhaps into 2012.

But Obama lifted the ban last October, right? Sadly, he’s doing the same thing with energy as he did with Obamacare’s death panels: Using regulatory power to accomplish something he knew wouldn’t cut the mustard legislatively. The Obama Administration claims that “safety” concerns are the cause of the holdup. They used that same excuse to keep skimmers from saving manatees from an “Iffy-Lube” last summer.

Add that to the fact that Democrats have opposed virtually every effort to exploit or expand domestic resources over the last 40 years (the newest refinery in the U.S. was built in 1976; while the newest nuclear power plant dates to 1996), and the picture becomes clear.

So, Senator Boxer: When are you scheduling your “President Obama isn’t doing enough to lower gas prices” press conference?

Personal Liberty

Ben Crystal

is a 1993 graduate of Davidson College and has burned the better part of the last two decades getting over the damage done by modern-day higher education. He now lives in Savannah, Ga., where he has hosted an award-winning radio talk show and been featured as a political analyst for television. Currently a principal at Saltymoss Productions—a media company specializing in concept television and campaign production, speechwriting and media strategy—Ben has written numerous articles on the subjects of municipal authoritarianism, the economic fallacy of sin taxes and analyses of congressional abuses of power.

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