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March 01, 2012

Good News! Higher Gas Prices? No Worries, We Can Take It

I've been wondering how the MBM would spin thee rise gas prices to protect Obama and if it's anything like this piece from Daniel Gross, "economics editor at Yahoo! Finance", it's going to be a long, long campaign.

Here's a taste.

..the U.S. economy is better situated to handle higher gas prices than it was last year, four years ago, or ten years ago. The upshot: higher gas prices are going to hurt, and will be painful for many. But they won't torpedo the economy.

For a host of reasons, the world's largest consumer of gasoline is much less likely to be the victim of high gas prices than it was a few years ago. Here's why.

First, compared with 2007 and 2008, corporate and personal balance sheets are in much better shape, and hence better able to absorb rising costs.

...

... the U.S. is a bigger producer of oil than it was a few years ago. Oil consumption is in many ways a zero-sum game: more money spent by consumers on gasoline means more money going into the pockets of oil producers most of them overseas.

...

...Americans simply drive less, and use less gas, than they used to. Part of that can be ascribed to the fact that employment remains far below the 2007 peak. But on the aggregate, the U.S. economy has figured out how to move more good and people around while driving fewer miles and using less gas.

...

...more people have alternatives to driving than did four years ago. When gas prices rise, ridership of mass transit usually rises in its traditional strongholds like New York, Washington, and Boston. But in the last several years, light rail systems have opened and expanded in many states. And that means more people around the country have alternatives to driving.

...

This is not to say that rising gas prices won't pinch the budgets of many Americans, or that they won't filter into the economy via higher prices for services and fuel surcharges. They will. But given the changing shape of the U.S. economy over the last several years, the damage is likely to be less severe.

I'm not going to Fisk all of this pile of nonsense and Obama talking points because well, there are only so many hours in the day. But think about this:

Who really thinks that personal balance sheets are better off today than they were in 07 and 08?

Higher production...ok, some of us even want more domestic oil production. In fact if some of us ("us" being "not Democrats") had our way 10 years ago, lots more production would be coming online right about...now (according the schedule the liberals gave us ten years ago).

If people could afford it, either because they had more money or gas was cheaper they'd drive more, they always do in good times.

More mass transit? Hey congratulations to those folks in deep blue Democratic cities who won't be hit by higher gas prices but you yokels out in the country? Well good luck with that!

Light rail? Yeah, that's pretty much right out of the Obama State of the Union speech.

So in short, thanks to the miracles that have happened in "the last several years", which just happened to be the same time as Obama has been in office, higher gas prices aren't a problem. Anyone who says otherwise must just be a partisan hack or a racist.

Related enough: Obama gave an energy speech in New Hampshire today (which just happens to be a state he needs in November but it was an official trip so we get to pay for it). He said drilling wasn't the answer because of increasing demand from places like China.

What kind of idiot do you have to be to think that increasing supply isn't a legitimate response to an increase in demand?


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posted by DrewM. at 04:33 PM

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