Gas prices too high? Blame Obama.
Oil hit a 30-month high today. Unlike most gas price spikes, the current one is directly traceable to President Obama's actual policies. The "Arab spring" is certainly the biggest factor in the current spike, but according to the Heritage Foundation it's far from the only factor.
Yesterday, Interior Secretary Ken Salazar testified before the House Natural Resources Committee on the Department of the Interior’s Fiscal Year 2012 Budget proposal. When pressed by Rep. John Fleming (R-LA) about the de facto offshore drilling moratorium the Obama Administration has inflicted on his district, Sec. Salazar responded: “When you look at the production within the Gulf of Mexico, even in the midst of the national crisis of the Deepwater Horizon, the production has remained at an all-time high.” This is an audaciously out of touch statement. According to the Energy Information Administration, the Obama offshore drilling moratorium will cause a 13-percent fall in domestic offshore oil production this year, which translates to a loss of about 220,000 barrels of oil a day. That means lower GDP growth for the nation, higher gas prices for all Americans, lower tax revenues for the federal government, and most importantly, fewer jobs for Americans living in the Gulf region.
It's not that Secretary Salazar is out of touch. The evidence suggests he's defending a shady policy by dishonest means. That policy is to allow energy prices to skyrocket in order to manipulate Americans into changing how we use energy. The exact kind of manipulation Tom Friedman extolled not too long ago, and the exact kind of manipulation Obama promised to pursue when he was a candidate for the presidency:
In that video, Obama speaks about "mobilizing a citizenry" to demand changes from their representatives, and he uses his cap and trade plan as an example of making energy prices "skyrocket" in order to create the mobilization to force the changes he wants. Cap and trade is a means to an end, spiking energy prices are part of the overall plan. I'm not putting words in his mouth -- that's what he said in the video.
Cap and trade as such is dead -- Obama couldn't even get that through the Democratic Congress. But has Obama ever disavowed using similar strategies on oil? Not that I'm aware of. And it's clear in the video that cap and trade is just an example of the overall energy strategy he wants to pursue, not its outer limit, nor something Obama has publicly reconsidered since. And, the decrease we're seeing in domestic oil production now is a direct result of Obama's lawless permitorium on offshore drilling. He didn't let the Gulf oil spill crisis go to waste.
I may be getting out on the edge a bit with this, but is it really a conspiracy theory when the conspirator voluntarily spells out the conspiracy?