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Carnival of Contemptibles

Posted By Don Boudreaux On July 16, 2008 @ 6:26 am In Energy,Politics,Prices,Seen and Unseen | Comments Disabled

Jonah Goldberg’s column in today’s New York Post is excellent [1].  Here’s a snippet:

Never mind that there’s no evidence "speculators" – i.e. commodity traders – are doing anything
to increase the price of oil. They aren’t hoarding it; no one’s
cornering the market. The speculators make money when the price goes
down, and they make money when it goes up. In short, they don’t care if
oil prices are high or low as long as they guessed correctly.

That may be the most infuriating part of all this. The speculators don’t want high oil prices – but Washington does.

The US government has barred billions of barrels of oil from coming
to the market by declaring huge petroleum reserves off-limits to
drilling. Uncle Sam stores vast amounts in the Strategic Petroleum
Reserve for a rainy day now called "election season." Government drives
up pump prices with gas taxes and regulations against increasing
refinery capacity.

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[1] Jonah Goldberg’s column in today’s New York Post is excellent: http://www.nypost.com/seven/07162008/postopinion/opedcolumnists/bipartisan_bull_120102.htm

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