By Tom Rhodes, 2/19/2012
Harry S. Truman famously took ownership for problems and issues coining the phrase "the buck stops here." Our current President is becoming infamous for blame shifting and refusing to own any of the problems he created, or positions he took prior to being elected. In 2008 when talking about high gas prices, Obama said that he "would have preferred a gradual adjustment." As president that is exactly what he got a gradual adjustment to higher gas prices. He appointed people who publicly proclaimed to want European $8-$10 per gallon prices for the USA to head the energy department. Why does the liberal press want us to believe that Obama hasn't taken actions to get exactly the results which he said he wanted? High gas prices to force the US population to quit using cars. That was one of his stated positions prior to being president.
Obama has and is manipulating gas prices to reach his stated and desired position, but unlike President Harry S. Truman, Obama is clearly trying to "pass the buck," telling Fox News, "You think the president of the United States going into reelection wants gas prices to go up higher? Is that-is there anybody here who thinks that makes a lot of sense?"
It does make a lot of since, especially when you look at his pre-president statements and actual actions as president. Just consider where he directs the DOE to spend money. In a blatant bit of insider trading the Washington Post reported that the Obama "administration embarked on a massive program to stimulate the economy with federal investments in clean-technology firms. ... $3.9 billion in federal grants and financing flowed to 21 companies backed by firms with connections to five Obama administration staffers and advisers." - Now do your best Mr. Rogers imitation - Can you say "Solyndra," I thought you could; the result of that one action was half a billion bucks to Obama cronies and a loss of over 1,000 jobs. If Bush had done the same things that Obama did the press would be having a field day.
Obama's actions keep the technology associated with alternatives to Oil prohibitively expensive. As I've noted before high-tech requires rare-earth elements. EPA regulations (not laws) have made mining of rare-earth elements cost prohibitive in the USA. China produces 97% of the rare earth elements, and is using its corner on the market to keep prices high. Obama is trying to use China as a scapegoat, filing a legal case against them for "hoarding" rare-earth elements. The New York Times quotes Obama as saying, "We want our companies right here in America. But to do that, American manufacturers need to have access to rare earth materials." This begs some questions: What moral or legal obligation does China have to export its raw materials at low prices to countries which refuse to mine their own resources for the same? Why is it illegal and immoral to import raw materials like rose wood and ebony to manufacture guitar parts in the USA, but vital that China export its raw materials to make wind mills in the USA. China, acting like a sensible owner of its own resources, is fully within its rights to keep its resources for use within China. They have no obligation to supply raw materials to others, especially when they can add value to those materials and sell finished products. China has no more culpability for an American shortage of rare earth elements than Brazil has for Libya's lack of rain.
The State department says the Keystone XL pipeline is safe (on two different occasions), the 21,000 miles of similar pipelines that crisscross the country from Wyoming to Louisiana are a good indication that it's safe; but rather than allow private business to expand on a proven method that will supply tens of thousands of jobs and 700K barrels of crude oil daily, Obama shut it down. That is a significant impact on oil futures, and gasoline prices.
Overall Obama has kept total US oil production down; actual new drilling where it can be most productive has not increased. At the same time his foreign policy has kept the Middle East stirred up. Minimally this is keeping crude oil markets insecure. This significant uncertainty in the market drives speculators to bump up the cost of oil. Keeping US oil production stagnant and unrest in oil-rich countries forces a premium on every barrel of oil.
So do we take Obama at his pre-presidency word, wanting high gasoline prices, or believe that he now says that he's working to keep gas prices down. The truth is we have seen a steady increase in gas prices under Obama, as he said he wanted. His actions exacerbate not help uncertainty in fuel markets. His attempted socialism of clean-tech results in graft, and keeps solar, wind etc. unaffordable for the masses. His actions just reward his cronies with tax dollars, and he thinks that's just fine and dandy. Even the car Government Motors produces, the Volt, is dependent upon foreign materials and high prices, thus a car nobody wants, and can't afford. No rational person could conclude that Obama is not at least indirectly responsible for high gas prices. Obama refusing to take ownership of the consequences of his actions is not the hallmark of a leader, but instead is the mark of a power hungry political weasel, willing to say or do anything to keep power.
He ran on wanting energy to be expensive, saying electricity prices would have to "skyrocket"; he appointed people to be in-charge of the Dept. of Energy who wanted energy to be expensive; the results of his actions over the past 3 years is that gasoline now costs well more than double what it did when he took office, and making electricity is getting more and more expensive. These are exactly the results he wanted, and told anybody who bothered to listen that he wanted. Why now is he trying to tell the American People that he's not responsible for the price of gasoline?