Before Beale Writes This

Triple digit oil prices.  Record number of futures bought that guarantee the 100 dollar a barrel price.  Instability in the Middle East, Mexico producing a million less barrels a day than this time last year. 

Personally, I find those facts alarming.  This country is NOT AT ALL prepared to deal with 5-6 dollar a gallon gasoline.  When it comes, and it will, prices go up on virtually everything.  Again, personally, I think this might be a good thing.  Food prices concern me, but perhaps a shift will occur and more farmers can market their products close to home.

Here’s what really scares the holy hell out of me.  So far, in just a few months, I have read statements from at least three local bloggers that they have no problem with the U.S. waging war for oil.   Well, the fastest growing economies right now are China and India, and that is naturally where the biggest demand for oil comes from.  Is it O.K. for them to be making war plans to insure they have a steady supply of affordable oil?  What about Russia?  Logic tells me a dwindling supply means that at some point, large countries with large armies and nuclear weapons will be waging war for their very survival.  Nothing about that is comforting.

Call me old school, but I believe that the only possible reason to go to war is to respond to a direct attack by an invading army.  That doesn’t mean that a country shouldn’t contribute to say…an effort to stop genocide somewhere, or as global peace-keepers when there is a potential for it, but protecting an economy by waging war is against every belief I have.

So, this makes me curious.  Apparently, the stuff inside our cell phone batteries is mined in Africa.  Africa produces more than 60 metal and mineral products and is a major producer of several of the world’s most important minerals and metals including Gold, PGE’s, Diamonds, Uranium, Manganese, Chromium, Nickel, Bauxite and Cobalt. It is interesting to note that Africa’s contribution to the world’s major metals (copper, lead and zinc) is less than 7%. As a result silver production is low (less than 3% of the world’s production) due to the fact that most silver is produced as a by product of lead – zinc and copper mining. Although under explored, Africa hosts about 30% of the planet’s mineral reserves, including 40% of gold, 60% cobalt and 90% of the world’s PGM reserves – making it a truly strategic producer of these precious metals.

Lets say that China and India and Russia all cut better deals with the Africans, (as much as you can in an area chock full of civil war) than we do, and suddenly, we are paying far more for some of those exports if we can get them at all.  This, too, could  catastrophically affect our economy…  Does the same rationale apply?

I guess I’m asking this:  What part of your daily existence would you pay much more for, or give up, if it meant we didn’t wage war somewhere on the planet?

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7 Comments

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7 responses to “Before Beale Writes This

  1. Rats! You beat me to it!

    🙂

    Someone at Merrill Lynch actually told me 2 months ago that some futures trading was already at 100/barrell. I don’t understand the commodities market or futures but it seems a no-brainer that oil will get that high.

    Meanwhile, there’s an ethanol GLUT, which may suck for investors but is supposed to be good for consumers.

    But companies and farm cooperatives have built so many distilleries so quickly that the ethanol market is suddenly plagued by a glut, in part because the means to distribute it have not kept pace. The average national ethanol price on the spot market has plunged 30 percent since May, with the decline escalating sharply in the last few weeks.”

    Yeah, no one said the road to energy independence wouldn’t be bumpy. But wow, we’ve already got an ethanol GLUT? That’s impressive.

    Get off the oil tit, people. We can do it. American industry can do it.

  2. Personally, I love the idea of hydrogen fuel cars. We already have the technology. The only hurdle is that, when you have a fender bender, things go kaplooie. Think shuttle disaster.
    Hey, maybe it would make people drive more safely. It would certainly make the commute more exciting.

    Almost all wars are for money, when you dig deep enough.

  3. I hear ya, EX, but maybe its time to change things? I mean, the stakes of war ain’t what they used to be.

  4. Pingback: Volunteer Voters » War In Defense Of Economy Is No Virtue

  5. Sadly, a great many of us are inextricably entwined in the war/economy conundrum. Have a 401(k)? IRA? Pension fund?

    Wall Street has been going mostly very well, and to my simple mind, a big part of that buoyancy has to do with oil; and another part is the financial success of the defense industry. When they say the war is costing x million dollars a day, where is that money going? The Pentagon is spending it; to whom do they make out the checks?

    So it’s not even just a question of resources. Sometimes war is made just to support the companies that make stuff to make war. And that, in turn, helps the economy. It is a dirty business, yes, but I can’t find many people who aren’t involved in it, indirectly, in some way.

    That’s why the integrity of the vote, not to mention the participation, is paramount. These days, Congress gets elected by campaign contributors, not by voters. It’s past time to change that.

  6. Good News! General Motors has just announced a new hybrid vehicle that will run on the Hopes of Doomed Liberals.

    You can use it to get food and medicine to your family when there isn’t any oil to be had.

  7. Great indeed! They could fund it with the money they spend co-opting Congress and burying the electric car.

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