Arguing with idiots: Gas Prices Edition

(Apologies to Glenn Beck for lifting the title of his GREAT book.)

The next time some Obama-voting granola rants about how the high prices at the pump are GEORGE W. BUSH’S fault,  hit that “person” right between the eyes with the info in  THIS great chart. It details – year by year — many of BarryO’s policies which have directly contributed to the high prices we are all seeing, and paying, at the pump.  (Facts are SUCH a bother.)

Another great piece of ammo is THIS primer on gas prices, which details all of the factors that go into affecting the price we pay.  You’ll learn that it is A LOT more than just “greedy” oil company execs and convenience store owners.

Speaking of idiots — Congressman Mike McIntyre (D-NC) thinks he has THE solution to bringing gas prices back down to reality:

U.S. Rep. Mike McIntyre says he is pushing policies to lower gas prices and give motorists and businesses rebates on their tax costs.

McIntyre, a Lumberton Democrat facing a re-election bid this year, said in a Sunday morning news release he is a cosponsor of the Gas Rebate Act, which would eliminate gas subsidies for oil companies and use that money instead for rebates for individuals and businesses for each vehicle they own or lease. He said that would result in rebates of about $160 per vehicle.

McIntyre said the proposal would inject $38.6 billion into the economy.

According to the news release, the five largest gas companies in the country earned $137 billion in profit last year and collected $4 billion in taxpayer-funded subsidies.

McIntyre and other members of the House have also called on President Barack Obama to release crude oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, the congressman said.

“We must pursue every opportunity we can to address the high costs of gasoline,” McIntyre said in the release.  “Everyone is feeling the pain at the pump, and we must work together to bring down the costs of gas.”

First of all, Mcintyre and his party keep disingenuously referring to energy industry tax breaks as “subsidies.”   Subsidies involve the transfer of money.  Tax breaks allow people to keep more of the money they made.   The energy industry gets tax breaks in exchange for taking risks that, hopefully, end up benefiting our economy.

If McIntyre and his friends succeed, the cost of doing business for energy providers is going to go up.  Politicians — like McIntyre — who have no idea about running a business, think business owners and managers simply “eat” operating cost increases.  Not so.  If a business faces a reduction in revenue, and wants to stay in business, it does one of two things: (1) tries to recover that revenue loss with price increases for their customers, or (2) cuts operating costs by reducing its workforce or offerings to its customers.   Oil companies have already shut down a lot of their domestic refineries as a cost-savings measure.

McIntyre’s solution is a wrong-headed idea — spawned from polling results — that will only worsen the economic problems we’re experiencing.   (When was the last time government intervention and regulation produced an increase in quality and reduction in price?) 

How about getting Congress to clamp down on its spending and giving Americans some gas tax relief?  That would be a great start.