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Gas prices keep climbing even as oil prices drop

May 29th, 2008 . by TexasFred

NEW YORK (AP) - The gasoline price record keeps getting broken with each passing day. AAA puts the national average for a gallon of regular at a record $3.95. It’s jumped 35 cents in the past month and is 76-cents-a-gallon higher than a year ago.

If you need premium, it’s also never been more expensive. The auto club says the national average for premium is $4.35. That’s an 84-cent-a-gallon jump over last year.

Oil prices fell back Thursday ahead of a report expected to show U.S. inventories of crude and petroleum products grew last week.

Prices remained volatile, though, buffeted about by threats against Nigerian oil facilities, worries about falling gasoline demand in the U.S. and a strengthening U.S. dollar.

By midday in Europe, light, sweet crude contract for July delivery was down 65 cents at $130.38 a barrel in electronic trade on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

In London, July Brent crude fell 86 cents to $130.07 a barrel on the ICE Futures exchange.

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Gas prices keep climbing even as oil prices drop

There are many things that can be said regarding this oil and fuel pricing crisis and much of it can be summed up in 2 words blurbs that are so easy to understand that even the dimmest of libbers should be able to comprehend their meaning…

Not the real cause: oil shortage, short supply, high demand

The real reasons we have incredibly high gas prices: price gouging, greedy bastards, Big Oil, rich Arabs, profit taking, record profits, price fixing, consumer abuse, rich executives, massive bonuses, tree huggers, spotted owl, snail darter and the list goes on and on, but I think you get the idea…

I don’t begrudge any company the opportunity to make money, that’s what free enterprise is all about, but when the oil companies sit back on their butts and tell us how much they are doing for us, and what it’s costing them to do it, well, I am astounded that the American consumer is falling for that line of BS.

I know a little bit about business, and you don’t have all those operating costs that Big Oil is saying they have and those supposed costs being what is driving them to record levels of profit, BILLIONS of dollars in profit, look folks, profit is figured in AFTER all costs of doing business are taken out, these record profits are just that, profit, financial gain, money in the pockets of the Big Oil executives, profit is what’s left after ALL operating expenses are covered…

By ALL, I mean exploration, drilling, production, transportation, refining, marketing, all of it, those costs are, or should be figured in before so much as a dollar of profit is figured into the equation, otherwise, if Big Oil was laying all that money out there and not making anything in return, it would be called losses, record losses, and I don’t recall hearing of any Big Oil companies that were recording record losses

We’re being taken for a ride my friends, and the Big Oil companies aren’t even greasing it before they stick it to us…

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Audit finds lax oversight in contractor payments

May 23rd, 2008 . by TexasFred

WASHINGTON (AP) - An internal audit of some $8 billion paid to U.S. and Iraqi contractors found that nearly every transaction failed to comply with federal laws or regulations aimed at preventing fraud, in some cases lacking even basic invoices explaining how the money was spent.

Of the money paid during a five-year period - from 2001 through 2006 - $7.8 billion in payments skirted billing rules with some violations egregious enough to invite potential fraud, warned the Defense Department’s inspector general.

The findings provided fresh fodder for anti-war Democrats, who say the Bush administration has turned a blind eye to the problem of corruption and fraud by relying too heavily on contractors to manage the war.

“There is something very wrong when our wounded troops have to fill out forms in triplicate for meal money while billions of dollars in cash are handed out in Iraq with no accountability,” said Rep. Henry Waxman, chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee.

It’s not too often that I agree with Waxman, but this is one of them, BILLIONS of U.S. tax dollars are wasted in Iraq and our servicemen and women are hurting here at home, they need better care and more benefits yet our guys in Iraq are handing out money in handfuls, BIG handfuls…

In its report, the IG estimated the Army made more than 180,000 commercial payments from stations in Iraq, Kuwait and Egypt in the five-year period. The payments were made for various supplies and services, including bottled water, food and trucks.

There is an every day cost of doing business, and it’s not cheap to feed, clothe and care for a 140K man army in Iraq, and I have absolutely no qualms with money being spent on our troops as they continue to stay in that hell hole in pursuit of Iraqi Freedom, my issue lies in the rebuilding that WE are doing, that WE are paying for from our tax dollars as WE finance the reconstruction of a nation that is swimming in easily recoverable oil resources…

Call me old fashioned but the old axiom is ‘To the victor go the spoils’ and I hear many running their heads about achieving ‘Victory in Iraq’, well, other than oil, just exactly what spoils does Iraq have to offer??

In one example, $11 million was paid to a U.S. company without any record of what goods or services were provided, the IG wrote.

Where do you think they get the money for ‘black ops’?? And yes, we really DO have folks out there engaging in ‘black ops’

Some so-called milbloggers say it’s all about hearts and minds, I dispute that, it’s about the almighty dollar and who can scam the most of it before someone calls them up for a personal accountability check…

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Audit finds lax oversight in contractor payments

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Obama warns seniors on Social Security threats

May 18th, 2008 . by TexasFred

GRESHAM, Ore. (AP) - Democrat Barack Obama told seniors Sunday that Republican John McCain would threaten the Social Security that they and millions like them depend on because he supports privatizing the program.

Obama turned to a bedrock, pocketbook issue as he spoke to about 130 people at an assisted living facility and sought to tie the GOP’s presidential nominee-in-waiting to an unpopular President Bush on an issue that motivates seniors.

“Let me be clear, privatizing Social Security was a bad idea when George W. Bush proposed it, it’s a bad idea today,” Obama said. “That’s why I stood up against this plan in the Senate and that’s why I won’t stand for it as president.”

Bush proposed a Social Security plan in 2005 that focused on creating private accounts for younger workers, but it never came up for a vote in Congress. Democrats strongly opposed the idea and few Republicans embraced it.

Well, it didn’t take long for Barack Hussein Obama to stoop to fear mongering in his bid for the Oval Office…

I am of the opinion the the privatization of Social Security would be a much better route than letting the Social Security Administration handle the funds, and then having those funds robbed any time the USA needs the extra money, and besides, in a privatized account your money would be earning interest, not too much interest at this time but interest none the less, and even a little interest is better than none…

Obama said McCain would push to raise the retirement age for collecting Social Security benefits or trim annual cost-of-living increases. Obama has rejected both ideas as solutions to the funding crisis projected for Social Security in favor of making higher-income workers pay more into the system.

Obama hasn’t got a clue, people are living longer and working longer, some because they want to, some because they have to, but the reason there hasn’t been a decent cost-of-living across the board increase in payments is because the money isn’t there to pay with, and there is nothing that Obama can or will do to fix that…

Social Security is a boondoggle, another fine example of the hand out mentality of the Democratic party…

The Social Security Act created a Social Security Board (SSB), to oversee the administration of the new program. It was created as part of President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal with the signing of Social Security Act of 1935, August 14, 1935. The Board consisted of three presidentially appointed executives, and started with no budget, no staff, and no furniture. It obtained a temporary budget from the Federal Emergency Relief Administration headed by Harry Hopkins. SOURCE

Americans fell for it too, hook, line and sinker, the government told us it was good for us, it was going to take care of our retired and disabled citizens, it was going to provide retirement benefits for the masses, and to some degree it has done all of that, but the benefits have been limited, and retirement on Social Security is not exactly a life of leisure…

Roosevelt’s ‘new deal’, sounds a lot like the Obama slogan regarding ‘change’, something to the effect of ‘We live in the greatest nation on earth and we’re going to change it’

“We have to protect Social Security for future generations without pushing the burden onto seniors who have earned the right to retire in dignity,” he said.

And that last line is the one that tells the tail on Obama and his vast knowledge of how things really work for the average U.S. citizen, no one can retire on just their Social Security benefits, not retire with the dignity that Obama seems to think they can…

I don’t know about all Social Security recipients but I can tell you this, FULL disability doesn’t even pay the monthly bills for most people, if it weren’t for other sources of income, IRA’s, investments, retirement benefits from their career, and in many cases being cared for by loved ones, their children or perhaps younger siblings, there are a great many recipients that would be out on the street…

Social Security is nothing more than a Democratically inspired stop-gap measure that has all but run it’s course, the best advice I can give all young people today is invest for your retirement and future health coverage, don’t fall for this BS about Social Security from a pandering Democrat that wants your vote and will say anything to get it…

Obama says he wants seniors to be able to retire ‘in dignity’, well Mr. Obama, all Social Security does is help our seniors avoid starvation and it keeps them from flooding the State and County hospitals when they have those inevitable health problems…

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Obama warns seniors on Social Security threats

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Lawmakers want to end oil shipments to US reserve

May 13th, 2008 . by TexasFred

WASHINGTON (AP) - Amid daily bipartisan sniping over high gas prices, Democrats and Republicans appear to agree on at least one thing: With oil over $120 a barrel, President Bush ought to stop buying crude for the government emergency reserve.

Both the House and Senate are expected to approve, with bipartisan support, legislation Tuesday directing Bush to temporarily halt the shipment of about 70,000 barrels of oil a day to the Strategic Petroleum Reserve.

Bush has refused to do so, arguing that this small amount of oil won’t impact prices and that for security reasons he wants to increase the stockpile to its full capacity of 726 million barrels. It now has about 701 million barrels, equal to nearly two months of oil imports.

Lawmakers’ search for a response to high gasoline and oil prices comes as Bush is preparing later this week to travel to Saudi Arabia where he is expected to try to convince the Saudis to increase oil production. So far, Saudi Arabia and other OPEC countries have refused to do so, arguing the high price of oil stems from other factors than a shortage of supply.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., plans to bring up for a vote Tuesday a provision to halt oil shipments to the federal reserve until the end of the year. Senate Republicans said they want shipments halted for six months, but are expected to support the Democratic measure.

The House is taking up a similar provision later in the day that also is expected to get broad support.

By all accounts, the president is standing firm.

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Lawmakers want to end oil shipments to US reserve

I would have thought that by now, at this late stage of the game, the Repubs and Dems in Washington would have caught on, dealing with George W. Bush, and trying to change his mind about anything, is like dealing with a spoiled 3 year old, once that mind is made up, no one is going to change it, he’s The Decider

In the last 7 years Bush has done nothing to alleviate the looming energy crisis, now I have to admit, his hands have been tied by a bunch of ‘greenies‘ and global warming nuts, but Clinton did nothing to alleviate this coming crisis during his 8 years in the White House either, and the same goes for Bush 41 and Reagan, and all that have preceded them for the last 50 years that I know of…

Some conspiracy theorists are floating the idea that maybe Bush is tied in with the Saudis and gets an under the table kickback from them for buying their over priced product, maybe he does, maybe he doesn’t, I don’t know and I doubt if I ever will and I am not going to throw accusations out there, especially ones that can’t be backed up and substantiated by fact and not just some theory, but after hearing the report on our local news about this last night, and after hearing the financial and economy people on FOX Business talking about how this could impact the price of gas by actually lowering it by .05 a gallon, well, that may not seem like a lot to Mr. Bush, but he’s not the one that’s having to pay for his gas, we are…

Now I don’t know about you, but a .05 a gallon increase or decrease isn’t going to make or break my personal bank account, but I wouldn’t turn down a decrease, and the economists may be right, a hold on buying oil for the strategic petroleum reserve might very well be a good move, but even if it were the most brilliant business decision ever made, if Bush thinks otherwise, you can forget it, The Decider is not going to change his mind…

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