Monday, May 15, 2006


High gas prices are continuing to make people -- especially Matt Lauer -- stupid. I only caught the first part of his interview with Chevron's CEO this morning and honest to God, Lauer asked if the oil companies could subsidize the prices at the pump and discount them by 5 cents a gallon. Which would probably save the average American consumer about a $1 each time they fill up.

Here are the profit margins for some major corporations. No one is asking Microsoft, with its whopping 32 percent GM (which is, btw, WOW) to discount prices of their software by $5 or even $50. We just suck it up and pay it and this is when there is little to no competition for the product.

I get that the oil & gas industry is hard to explain. I've been in the industry for three years now, but I still have questions. No one wants to deal with geopolitical complications, or how much it costs to pull a barrel of oil out of the ground or how long it even takes, or all the regulations and capital expenditures required to even get that 42-gallon barrel of oil converted into something you can put into your car. It's hard to explain, hard to understand, but I also think people are in denial: they don't want to think the fact that they're driving something that gets 8 to 10 miles a gallon or the fact that they need to keep their ACs running at full blast during the summer dog days might have something to do with high natural gas and oil prices.

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