American Bandwagon


By: Wayne Brown

Well, good folks of Cushing, Oklahoma, get ready. President Obama is coming to town today so expect the peace and quiet of your little town to be violated to all ends. Of course, this visit has nothing whatsoever to do with the people or the town of Cushing, Oklahoma in terms of any particular interest on the part of the President. No, as usual, it is all about him and whatever he can insert himself into in order to continue the appearance that he is either the welfare of the average Middle American or the success of the oil and gas business. He is coming for one reason and one reason only…to take credit for the new pipeline running from Cushing to Houston.

Now we can all remember the President’s position on this very same pipeline with regard to the section of it connecting Cushing with Canada. He was perfectly fine with putting the whole project on the backburner and letting it sit until he decided what to do with it. At the very least, it would remain there until after the elections of November. Yet, at the same time, he speaks of the importance of this section of the project and how it will bring more crude oil to the refinery and make more fuel available to the average consumer…as if it was his idea in the beginning. In actuality, he had nothing to do with this section of the project except to insert himself into it with the hope of grabbing a voter or two through his association with it. Otherwise, I doubt you will find Obama’s feet on the ground within the borders of Oklahoma.

This is one of the poorer choices by the President in my mind. He has spent most of his first three years in office unleashing the EPA on all aspects of American industry and placing choke chains on the oil and gas industry in particular. Now, he wants to hold himself up as that shining beacon of light that has done more for oil and gas and the drilling industry in general than anyone in the past eight years…a claim which goes unproven and for which no supporting evidence was afforded by his administration. The President has made little secret of the fact that he loathes fossil fuels and that the focus for his time in office will be on clean energy spelled “G-R-E-E-N”. He has also made it clear that he is not concerned with how much that approach costs the American taxpayer as he sits in the Oval Office and hands out bags of money to industries like Solyndra and watch them wait out the clock on bankruptcy all the time knowing that a large portion of that money will end up back in his political coffers. In the private sector, it is called “money-laundering” and it is a criminal act. All the while, he courts the environmentalist vote with his perceived concerns for the resources of America. That concern does not extend to the taxpayer’s money.

Here again is a President willing to fire up a Boeing 747 for a trip to Oklahoma along with all of the associated logistics, people, vehicle, aircraft, and dollars all in the name of self-promotion and all on the taxpayer’s dime I might add. Here again is a President who is so self-centered that he would not miss such a chance to stand in the spotlight yet cannot seem to muster the desire or the effort to celebrate Memorial or Veteran’s Day in proper fashion. Instead, he is more interested in getting to Hawaii for vacation or back to Chicago for a Socialist weenie roast. No, when it can be about him and he can have the opportunity to take the credit, count on him to be there.

America is hurting in many ways. We have bailed out the auto industry with stimulus money and now watch GM claim that it has regained its top spot as an auto manufacturer only to place $40,000 electric cars in its showrooms which can barely compete with many of today’s gasoline-powered cars that sell at half the price and do not have the potential to need a set of $8,000 batteries somewhere downstream. What would be your reaction if you went out to buy a new Nissan and was told that within 6 to 8 years you could expect to spend at least $8,000 to keep the car running. Oh, and by the way, you won’t be paying the full $40,000 price tag for the car…Uncle Sam has agreed to thrown in a few thousand to sell America on the idea….one that again has come before its time in the marketplace.

I gave some thought to the differences dividing the left and right in this country and what it would take to find a middle ground. In my mind, that is what we need in a leader in Washington today and that is what we are so lacking in this President and most of the elected officials we have in Washington. They are not oriented to uniting us as a people for they are way too busy dividing us in the interest of promoting their own well-being as a politician. One thing became apparent to me. What I would like to see in an America that is on good footing is not so far off of what a person of the left would also want…good financial condition, caring for the needs of those less fortunate, a growing economy, jobs, available medical care…the list goes on and on. This President has many on the left believing that he and his administration are the ones who will provide those things. For me, that is a completely false reality grown in the utopian garden of a socialist’s mind, or, as Plato referenced, it is the noble lie offered up to shore the hopes of those who give you the power.

Ronald Reagan once said, “Don't be afraid to see what you see.” Not even in his time was that quote so true as it is today in this country. We have a media far too-willing to brush things aside which should take center stage but requires far too much work and research on their part to warrant the follow-up. They buy their seat in the White House Press Conference with their kid gloves approach to the Office of President in far too many cases. Wait and see how many questions Jay Carney answers with regard to the rationalization of the President’s visit to Cushing or how that plays out based on his position on the rest of that pipeline project. Don’t hold your breathe.

Ronald Reagan also pointed out, “When you can't make them see the light, make them feel the heat”. Our Media and our nation lacks this courage today. We are so immersed in the waters of political correctness that we refrain too often from “questioning what it is that we really see”. Those of you who remember the television series, “Dallas” might remember the character, “J.R. Ewing and what a conniver he was in his escapades with other women. In one show, upon being caught by his wife, Sue Ellen, as he was bedding one of his women, he remarked to Sue Ellen, “Honey, are you gonna believe me or your lying eyes?” That is about where we have come to in America today.

So, as the good folks of Cushing sit and watch Obama read his glowing teleprompter message to them today touting his administration’s efforts to make this day a reality, one can only hope that the vast majority of them are sitting there asking themselves, “what is it that I really see here?” If that is the case, I certainly hope they will have the courage and the strength to call it what it really is…an outrageous case of self-promotion opportunity at the expense of the American taxpayer.

©Copyright WBrown2012. All Rights Reserved. 22 March 2012

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Comments 20 comments

vineyardfauxcom 4 years ago

I will keep my guns my cash and you can keep the change ,Mr.Brown is it true our country has given some of our oil rights to Russia ???

Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 4 years ago from Texas Author

vineyardfauxcom...You know, I have looked at that although I know that we are exporting some of our domestic oil. I always assumed that most of that was going to China but we may be enticing Russia with some of it. I'll look into it. Thanks much! WB

dahoglund profile image

dahoglund 4 years ago from Wisconsin Rapids

Much of this was predictable from the presidents campaign. People who complain about corporate welfare seem to think bailing out car companies is ok.

Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 4 years ago from Texas Author

@dahoglund...It is amazing how attitude change when it comes to bailing out big unions which is exactly what Obama did in the case of the auto industry...otherwise down the tubes. As Ronald Reagan so aptly observed, "It seems that everyone who is for abortion has already been born." Thanks, Don! WB

Larry Wall 4 years ago

Excellent hub.

The oil and gas industry has been a pawn in virtually every presidential election since the election of Jimmy Carter. That year we passed the fuel use act, which said that no more utility companies could use natural gas because we were running out. That was shortly after the phrase of "let the yankees freeze" became popular in the south. Gas reserves were low then, because the technology did not exist to find them, much less recover them. As a result of the Fuel Use Act, we have a power plant in Boyce, LA, that gets daily deliveries of coal from Wyoming while Louisiana is one of the leading gas producing states in the country. None of the Presidents have done any better regarding the oil and gas industry. That industry has become everyone's favorite whipping boy and Obama is no different. The pipeline should be built. Some domestic oil is exported for convenience. The EPA has too many rules and makes too many changes. Yes I worked for the oil and gas industry as a PR person for 22 years. That same industry also fired me by eliminating my position. While I have an issue with that, naturally, I still believe in the validity of the oil and gas industry. We need a president who will develop a real energy policy, one that allows drilling in places where we have not drilled before. We need a plan that will bring some order to the chaos surrounding the alternative fuel industry.

However, energy is not the only issue. Health care, the economy and many other things are being handled in a helter skelter fashion. We need some planning based on facts and not political payback.

Voted up and awesome.

Becky Katz profile image

Becky Katz 4 years ago from Hereford, AZ

What I find fascinating is that my step-\son, who lost his job right after Obama got into office, Loves Obama and thinks he is doing great. He has not had a job since Obama came to office. I wonder what that tells him? And why does he not see what is really happening.

Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 4 years ago from Texas Author

@Larry Wall...I love your premise that we have to have a leader who will be honest with the industry which has been a political football in mind since the Jimmy Carter Era. If the auto industry is considered important enough to America for stimulus then what of oil and gas? I am not saying that we need tos subsidize every industry but what we need to do is take a look at what government is doing specifically to each industry and look for some compromise that will allow both a win/win situation. No one ever intended that the government regulate every thing in our world. Thanks much Larry for some really great commentary and insight. WB

@Becky Katz...With regard to your son, Becky. You cannot explain the problem with Obama to you by trying to explain Obama to him. In his mind, he has bought off on the "noble lie" that Obama has come to establish America as a Utopia. Your son is convince that industry is evil and the reason that his job no longer exists is a function of that evil not Obama. You have to move him back to the time of our founders and give him a strong foundation on the purpose and intent of the Constitution...then, he will be of a mindset to truly evaluate Mr. Obama for what he really is. Thanks much. WB

breakfastpop profile image

breakfastpop 4 years ago

Great piece of writing. I could write about this every single day and still not feel satisfied. Something akin to insanity is sweeping our country. Obama makes no attempt whatsoever to say anything with a shred of truth in it. Why is Congress so silent about all the lies? This isn't just politics as usual, this is disgusting and unacceptable. Up and awesome.

Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 4 years ago from Texas Author

@breakfastpop...So very true. He claims we use 20% of the oil on the planet that is consumed but only produce 2% when in truth we are the third largest producer of oil producing 10% of our needs domestically. If we can up that figure and reduce the dependence on buying it outside the country, the price on the global market will go down. But, he is hell-bent that Americans pay the same exhorbent price that others pay so he can justify laundering money into the green industries whose time has not yet come and will not unless the price of gasoline is driven through the roof. He must go! Thanks Poppy! WB

Larry Wall 4 years ago

Wayne, I hate to disagree with you, but if we increase our production to 10 percent, which cannot be done overnight, that level of production will not be enough to significantly affect prices, because OPEC can cutback on what it sales, thus keeping the demand at the same level. OPEC has been the key to oil prices since the 1970s and is in the same position today. It would take us and other non-open members, increasing our production to have an impact that follows the law of supply and demand.

Currently, in the oil business, supply and demand is not the dictating reasons for prices. It is supply and control that dictates prices.

Some would say that domestic oil would be cheaper. I have a hub about how sometimes you cannot help but make money that explains that domestic companies will have to charge the global price or face a revolt by their stock holders for not getting the greatest return possible on their investment.

It is a complicated issue, that will one day, resolve itself for awhile, until some other set of circumstances cause it to go up again.

Speculators are feeding into the OPEC frenzy by posting excessive prices on the futures market.

The Frog Prince profile image

The Frog Prince 4 years ago from Arlington, TX

It's amazing how Obama can spin something where people actually believe what he is spinning. He stated that he is going to ensure his departments expedite the pipeline. DUH. The approval for the section he is talking about has already gone through the process.

The facts are that Obama lobbied Congress to ditch the pipeline from Canada to that point. Obama thinks everyone is stupid and if anyone watches the Lame Stream Media and believes much of it they are stupid. Facts usually disagree with Obama but then he is a progressive. They don't like facts, they prefer to spin them into a lie.

The Frog

Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 4 years ago from Texas Author

@Larry Wall...From my perspective, the drive behind pricing is speculation in the in pork bellies. Right now it is a pretty good bet that one can buy and sell crude futures and make a profit. From the last figures that I saw, that speculative interest affects about 20% of the crude oil which is bought and sold by speculators who never touch it. How much of that is domestic, export, etc. I do not know. I pains me to think that our domestic oil is being sold on the global market when we need it so badly here. I realize that we cannot total sustain our needs but if we can reduce it and also find a way to penalize those who would ship it out to other ports, then maybe we can have some impact. I would hate to see the Canada pipeline completed only find that it only benefitted export from the USA. Obama cited a figure that we use 20% of the oil produced in the world. My reseach, based on bpd says it is half of that number...9.9% based on 2009 figures. At the same time, he claims we only produce 2% of the total production yet we are the third largest producer in the world based on bpd production.

I see where the oil companies could be between a rock and a hard place with their investors, but I also see that the American consumer keeps asking, "are we getting gouged?" If the pressure is on from investors to sell to the highest bidder, I think we are indirectly getting gouged at the consumer level. How we counter that, I do not know except to again reinterate that there should be some penalties associated with exporting domestic energy products including coal to take some of that "elective profit" off the table. That is my take on it. Regardless, Obama is attempting to take credit for things that he has not done and he then props it up with bogus information. We need to hold his feet to the fire because the media will not. Thanks much, Larry. I certainly appreciate your knowledge and insight as well as your willingness to share it with us. WB

Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 4 years ago from Texas Author

@The Frog Prince...I agree, Jim...Obama's Administration held this thing up with approvals and red tape in the state department and are now trying to tie those issues to the Congress. Not only is he willing to lie about things, he is willing to do it so blatantly that even a fool could figure it out if he simply ask himself what it is I really see here. This guy is pulling numbers out of thin air. Why does he need a teleprompter to tell lies...he is making it up as he goes along anyway? WB

SilentReed profile image

SilentReed 4 years ago from Philippines

Any president would grab the opportunity to take the credit. It would be up to the electorate to analyse the truth or be hoodwink. The vast reserve of natural gas in the U.S. and Canada could not be exploited before because of the needed technology. But despite the politicians and their maneuverings, I believe innovation in technology and the pioneering spirit of individuals will eventually see us through the economic down turn. Politicians may hinder but they cannot stop progress.

Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 4 years ago from Texas Author

@SilentReed...I agree with you, they all do it. It is just that one is doing it so blatantly. We cannot use technolgy before its tme but inspite of that Obama wants to do this that with green energy while he thumbs his nose at getting oil out of the tar sands. WB

The Frog Prince profile image

The Frog Prince 4 years ago from Arlington, TX

Larry - You have a minor grasp of the issues so research a little bit deeper. I've written more than one Hub about the oil industry and gas prices myself. Speculation is but 15% of any added price of oil. That's a fact. My son works on the rigs in the Gulf as a geologist. Yes, it isn't going to be an overnight thing but the Democratic mantra of it will take ten years, every ten years is quite stale. As many times as they have put the kibosh on increased domestic drilling every ten years or so, we could be swimming in oil by now. It takes 3-5 years to bring a rig on production. So Obama can't take credit for any increase in domestic production if we are seeing. Clinton or Bush - yes. Obama - no.

The oil industry has massive research and production costs. That is rarely mentioned when oil profits are cited.

Then Obama wants to lie and say we have 2% of the world's reserves which is an outright lie. He backs that up by saying we use 20% of the oil exported to the world. The two have nothing to really do with each other but somehow the idiot makes some sort of connection with the two.

Take some time Larry and do some serious reading.

The Frog Prince

drbj profile image

drbj 4 years ago from south Florida

Any voter who believes Obama should be re-elected should sit down and carefully read your well-chosen words in this explicit hub, Wayne. Our leader will not tell the truth about ANYTHING unless it will help him to be re-elected. To paraphrase Reagan, he doesn't see what every sensible person sees. He sees only what HE sees (with Soros' addistance).

Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 4 years ago from Texas Author

@drbj...You have him figured to a Tee. As long as he gets what he wants he could care less what kind of carnage is in his is not his fault as he would say. Life is so much easier when you can just make things up to fit every situation...apparently that has served him well from his background to his education and now, his presidency. Thanks Doc! WB

Larry Wall 4 years ago

Frog Prince:

I do not want to get into an argument, but everything you said closely follows what I have said in several hubs and forums over the past few months. Yes, it can take three to five years or longer to bring a deepwater project on line. I do not think you can validate that speculation is 15 percent of the price, because it could be more or less. Speculation is one of the biggest variables in oil pricing. I have also noted that oil companies make a lot of money because they spend a lot of money and the actual return on investment is really not that spectacular compared to most other industries. There are exceptions and this period of time may be one of those exceptions.

Just for the record, in case you did not know, I was public affairs director for the oldest oil and gas trade association in Louisiana for 22 years. I have done extensive research on oil and gas issues. I think I was the first person who charted the price of a gallon of gasoline vs. a gallon of oil, instead of a barrel of oil, to show the relationship between oil and gasoline prices. I was also the lead investigator and writer for a report prepared by the Governor's Energy Committee in Louisiana several years ago which was the basis for the enactment of several drilling incentives in the state, back when oil prices were low. You are welcome to disagree with me if you wish, but do not make the assumption that I have not investigated the issue. I lived these issues for 22 years as a PR person and prior to that I was a newspaper reporter for 16 years. My first by-lined story was about the impending oil shortages in 1973. I have been around the block a few times. Finally, there have been many efforts to slow drilling. However, the technology that has been developed in the last five to seven years is responsible for so many new reserves being found. However, because we are finding a lot of oil, does not mean it is all going to be cheap. When oil was $40 a barrel, the industry knew there was more to be found, but it was going to take $50 to get it to the surface. Basic business tells you that you have to wait until the price reaches a level that makes it profitable for you to produce the oil. We are not going to run out of oil, but it is never going to be $40 a barrel again.

Ghost32 4 years ago

Larry Wall: With your PR background, you're bound to realize that in the short term nothing more powerfully affects the entire oil and gas industry--pricing, production, investment, the works--than the confidence level within the industry at any given time. That is, when energy people have reason to believe they have a governmental situation (especially regulatory) that they can probably trust for a while, it's hammer down, drill baby drill, and the price IS affected significantly as a consequence of "all that".

While I don't have your PR background, I do have "peon level" work experience in the field in several areas: Cement bulk hand (Halliburton), derrick hand on the workover rigs, and most recently as a water truck driver during the gas drilling boom on Colorado's western slope.

We (meaning those of us from the ground up who worked in the energy industry) saw Obama coming a mile away. Knowing his detestation of oil and gas, 99.99% of us knew that if he was elected in 2008, we were in deep doo-doo. The day he was elected, a lending firm composed of private investors who had agreed to finance my bobtail water truck--decided instead to close their doors. Permanently. I had the corporation set up, the truck located, insurance ON that truck, an agreement with my employer to move me from company driver to owner operator status, and a plane reservation for the following week to fly to Florida to pick up the truck.

Oh well.

But It was not only the lender who pulled in its horns. Company after company began pulling out, many stacking their rigs, going into survival mode to wait for a better day. Three months after Obama's inauguration, my job was history and I was out of the industry--Obama's mistake, since I was now free to write full time, with a very large chip on my shoulder.

You may be right that we will not see $40 a barrel oil again. But it does not need to be at $100 a barrel, either, and the rise in confidence level ALONE that will be powered by Obama's defeat on Election Day will have a POWERFUL influence on energy prices all the way around.

(I say "will" because I do not accept losing in November as an option.)

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