High gas prices are without merit

According to information published in the national press Exxon earned almost $11 billion in the first quarter in profit. The world’s largest publicly traded company said that the higher oil prices increased profits 69 percent from a year ago making it the best quarter’s earnings since the third quarter of 2008.

Huge oil profits are most definitely bothering drivers with gas prices averaging almost $4.00 a gallon for regular unleaded nationwide. President Barrack Obama wants to reduce the oil companies’ earnings by eliminating $4 billion yearly in taxpayer’s subsidies. That should be done and would definitely please most Americans.

The Department of Commerce has reported that economic growth had slowed sharply during the first quarter of the year partly because of the high gas prices. Other oil companies also had big profit gains during the first quarter.

AAA Auto Club has predicted that gas prices could increase more due to refineries being forced to shut down in Alabama, Texas and Pennsylvania recently due to the bad weather causing power outages.

In addition to that fuel stockpiles appear to be decreasing even with people driving less because of the high prices. Supplies were reported to be down around 2.5 million barrels last week.

Gas prices are still going up at the pump in most places even though oil dropped below $110 per barrel last week after a government report showed that supplies of petroleum products are growing. The demand for gas is reported to be down nationwide as well.

Prices at the pump for gas have risen 91 cents per gallon since the beginning of the year and over one dollar a gallon since this time last year.

A reader of my column in Mitchell County (GA) sent me information showing that 19% of all foreign oil used in the United States come from Canada, according to a story in National Geographic Magazine.

He went on to say that in his opinion when regular gas at the pump cost more than $2.50 per gallon it is without merit. He also feels that the value of gas does not reflect the fair market value but rather reflects a supply and demand value. Refineries who directly control the supply of gas are controlling the price of gas. This is correct because we all know how the supply and demand factor works.

No doubt at this point the federal government has done little to stabilize high gas prices and bring them back down to a reasonable point that most Americans can afford.

My Mitchell County reader closed his comments with two questions. First, why does the United States not import more foreign oil from Canada? Second, how can a state or federal government, or an individual put together a reliable budget when gas prices are totally out of control?

My question to those in control would be why are we not allowed to see more oil wells operating off our coast and why is more oil not allowed to be produced in Alaska, one of our own states?

My final thought on the ridiculously high prices of gas is that the oil “kings” are presently taking dollars out of the pockets of lower income folks who must use a certain amount of their product to get back and forth from home to work. Many of these folks must go shopping for food and to see their doctors as well.

Should anyone out there figure out a way we can successfully to some extent boycott against these rip off high gas prices give us your thoughts in a letter to the editor.