The whole mess with the price of oil is sure above my head. The oil executives have been saying it’s simply supply and demand. We are using more oil than can be produced; therefore, the price goes up since it is becoming more of a precious commodity. The Republicans say we have plenty of oil reserves offshore and the current laws prohibit drilling. The Democrats say that tapping the offshore reserves is only a temporary solution and we should try to conserve and not destroy the environment.
For the first time, Americans are cutting down on their driving. They are buying more fuel-efficient cars such as hybrids and ditching the SUVs. Truckers are parking their rigs and moms are car-pooling. People are even moving back into the cities to avoid the expensive commutes. Many businesses are cutting to a four day workweek to conserve energy. The pocket book is really being hit and some folks are even giving up luxuries like bottled water that cost more than gasoline and is no better than the stuff out of the tap.
Now we learn that the price of oil may be only paper pricing. Testimony in Congress this week indicated that 60% of oil prices may be speculative and driven by large trade banks and hedge funds. A complex financial market system and the major oil companies are the ones responsible for the manipulation. Names like Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, Citigroup and JP Morgan Chase are the culprits.
The whole matter of the exorbitant price of gasoline is very complex and is probably due to a combination of all the above-mentioned factors. The bottom line is that a pawn like me is caught by the short hair and I can’t do anything about the whole thing. Like Golum in Lord of the Rings, we are addicted to the “Precious.” In our case the precious is oil rather than the power of the ring. Like Golum, we have become a slithering, crawling animal, willing to do anything to get our precious. We are addicted to oil and are controlled by the tycoons who profit from our suffering.
I’m trying to stay on the porch with the lights turned off and the car parked in the garage. I’m thinking about resorting to the abundant deer in my yard as a source of food. They have eaten enough of my plants, so now it’s my turn. If I can kindle a fire in the back yard, a venison steak may go good with my tomatoes. For entertainment, I have pulled out the old chessboard. I have set up the board with me having all pawns vs. my opponent with all Queens and Rooks. Maybe, by figuring out some chess strategies to survive in a games like that, it will help me with the position I have with the oil and Wall Street barons who are trying to control my life. In this case, I think the Rook is the appropriate chess piece to select as an opponent. The name fits very well.