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Old 01-25-2009, 09:40 AM   #1
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Who Profited From Oil Prices

after fuel prices were cut in half(and now have rebounded a bit), it begs the question: who really controls them?

we know several factors are involved: price of oil, speculators, wars, profit margins, and supply/demand to name a few. but this article, by a source NOT known to be conservative, puts MOST of the blame/credit on the consumer.

http://www.parade.com/news/intellige...il-prices.html

i suspect OPEC and speculators(controlling oil prices) are next in line leaving oil companies, really just as previously thought, simply on a ride as record usage produced record profits.
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Old 01-26-2009, 04:18 AM   #2
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I don't know who does, but the Gov't tries to. Gas prices went up, and local gov'ts all over the country were complaining that their fuel tax revenues were down (because the price was high, and people were driving less), so they needed to raise the fuel taxes! How backwards is that? My view is this: If less fuel is being used, there are less miles traveled on the roads, less wear & tear, and less maintenance should need to be done.

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Old 01-26-2009, 04:54 AM   #3
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first of all, I don't think anyone is making much of a profit on oil currently

OPEC is threatening the oil compnies by cutting production of barrels per day in order to drive the prices up. the problem is that all of the reserves are full and the oil companies are actually renting (maybe leasing) barges to fill with oil and store off shore because of the substantially low prices.

I have also heard that texas has cut off most of its oil wells because it is not profitable right now to run them.

the tax thing is going to get strange. in NC, they actually proposed a tax on the miles driven which would be in addition to the tax on gasoline. I think a lot of states are looking into something like that. I agree with jay, less gas means less wear and tear. let the ones burning the road up pay for it.

there was a proposal a few years back to change the tax on gasoline. it is currently a percentage of the price. they wanted to change it to a set amount per gallon. this was back when gas was somewhere around the $3 mark. it was higher than the current percentage but when it didn't make it and prices went up, the supporters of it let everyone know that we made a bad decision. I think we did pretty good considering the price now. I think that was also a NC thing.
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Old 01-26-2009, 05:58 AM   #4
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While less miles travelled means less wear and tear on the roads, I suspect that it's not linear. Cutting miles travelled in half probably doesn't reduce maintenance costs by anywhere near half.
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Old 01-26-2009, 06:38 AM   #5
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I agree that it is not linear in that fashion but you also have the transfer truck driver which is doing much more damage to the road (mile per mile) than I am. this has been compensated for in the past by him paying his taxes more often as he gets something like 5MPG vs my 35ish.

now with the second (proposed) tax, we are paying for miles driven and now I have to pay the same as him though my vehicle weighs a very small fraction of what he does completely loaded down.

I don't really know a good solution to this problem but I don't really like the solution that they have come up with.
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Old 01-26-2009, 08:38 AM   #6
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I'm actually pretty proud of our drop in consumption. We're back to the levels we were using in 99-2000 and gas prices kinda reflect that time period too. I scaled it to 0 because I feel it's a better representation of how much change there has been as opposed to the cropped graphs marketing personnel and political figures use to exaggerate the truth.

Still, it's pretty impressive. I'm also shocked how that change, even though it was a little bit, still caused gas to double in price and oil suppliers were supposedly falling behind.

Data acquired from USEIA.
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Old 01-26-2009, 09:16 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BEEF View Post
I agree that it is not linear in that fashion but you also have the transfer truck driver which is doing much more damage to the road (mile per mile) than I am. this has been compensated for in the past by him paying his taxes more often as he gets something like 5MPG vs my 35ish.
Not only do trucks do more damage tothe road per mile traveled, and they use more fuel per mile, but the tax on diesel fuel is higher than the tax on gasoline.

-Jay
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Old 01-26-2009, 10:19 PM   #8
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Not only do trucks do more damage tothe road per mile traveled, and they use more fuel per mile
True, but I don't think you're going to fit 40,000 lbs of cargo into Prius. Really, the most energy efficient option for transporting goods is train, but that doesn't seem to be a popular option in the US. Maybe the railway system isn't developed enough, or the transition from rail to road too inefficient/time consuming to make it a viable option?
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Old 01-27-2009, 07:16 AM   #9
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True, but I don't think you're going to fit 40,000 lbs of cargo into Prius. Really, the most energy efficient option for transporting goods is train, but that doesn't seem to be a popular option in the US. Maybe the railway system isn't developed enough, or the transition from rail to road too inefficient/time consuming to make it a viable option?
You'd be surprised how much rail is actually used. Most goods that come from cali to here in new mexico get here by rail. UPS uses rail for their ground shipments.
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Old 01-27-2009, 07:52 AM   #10
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You'd be surprised how much rail is actually used. Most goods that come from cali to here in new mexico get here by rail. UPS uses rail for their ground shipments.
Alright, but there's still gobs of trucks on the roads, many of them traveling hundreds of miles to make a delivery. I'm saying if the rail system were adequately developed and/or fuel prices high enough, most of that distance could be covered by rail, then the last chunk from a rail depot to the delivery point could be covered by truck, assuming the delivery point doesn't have it's own rail access.
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