Oil Prices Drop Below $60 a barrel (23% since July) President Bush’s ratings Increase


Today oil prices dropped to a six month low to under $60 a barrel.  The oil price decline may just be one of the many factors that are responsible for President Bush’s recent increase in the polls. Gasoline prices are something that every day Americans witness on a daily basis.

LONDON (Reuters) – Oil dropped under $60 to a six-month low on Monday as abundant supplies in top consumer the United States and fears that slower U.S. economic growth would stunt demand for fuel extended a price retreat.

President Bush’s approval rating has risen to 44% in a new USA TODAY/Gallup Poll.

Posted September 25, 2006 by
Energy, Politics, Polls | 25 comments

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  • Comments

    25 Responses to “Oil Prices Drop Below $60 a barrel (23% since July) President Bush’s ratings Increase”

    1. Miss-Underestimated on September 25th, 2006 2:12 pm

      Why did the gasoline prices go up anyway?

    2. Scared Monkeys on September 25th, 2006 3:05 pm

      Supply and Demand … or was it a Rovian Conspiracy? The latter was a joke.

    3. Miss-Underestimated on September 25th, 2006 3:14 pm

      Did the supply and demand ever change? I thought it was Katrinas fault?

    4. para2legal on September 25th, 2006 3:23 pm

      MissU – one of the reasons is so Chevron could legally gouge us thereby giving their CEO a retirement package of $30+ million. I very much doubt if any CEO’s read this blog, but why are they paid so much?? Bob Nardelli of Home Depot was bonused $25+/million (in cash and stock) in one quarter. Not a year, 1 quarter. Guess that’s why Home Depot’s corporate admin. assts. are no longer salary but hourly. Used to be the President/CEO made approx. 4x that of it’s highest paid executive. Not any more. Corporate mentality has changed to “he who dies with the most toys – wins”. You remember Kenneth Lay – how many homes did he have..at least 6??? His wife opened a used furniture store in Texas – she had to do something with the extra furnishings because she was constantly re-decorating them. And so it goes. And, I really don’t give a rat’s arse who earns what, BUT if it’s earned from my misery (and who wasn’t financially hit in the pocketbook at having to paying $3/+ for a gallon of gas), shame on them. The only recourse I have is to vote against the incumbents.

    5. Miss-Underestimated on September 25th, 2006 3:32 pm

      I think the price dropped because of the rise in ethanol/biodiesel plants: think this is harvest time. If the price was to continue to go up. It would make ethanol even more attractive. The big oil guys are afraid if they keep gouging, the ethanol usage will stop them big bonuses.

      Beyond that think GLOBAL ECONOMY

    6. pdh3 on September 25th, 2006 3:43 pm

      Funny how gas prices drop and Dubya’s appoval ratings seem to rise. Since oil companies have been allowed to make record profits at the expense of the American people, I guess it was time to return the favor. Those hearings before Congress were just for show. The fact remains that gas prices have doubled since Dubya took office, and the profits for the oil companies have risen to astronomical heights. Ask the single Moms, or the retirees on a fixed income, or the college students trying to work their way through school how good they feel when they pull up to the pump. And no, I am not a liberal Democrat. I just see the connection bertween a President who is essentially a Texas oil man, and the fact that oil companies have made a sinful amount of money during his administration. Neither he, nor Congress did anything about it, and Americans just followed along with being gouged at the pump because we think we have no choice. Katrina was just a convenient excuse – any other one would have worked just as well. It was an opportunity to give oil execs an even bigger bonus this year. It’s a very ugly business.

    7. AYFIT on September 25th, 2006 4:52 pm

      Now do away with the 20% terrorist premium and we will see 1.49.9 per gallon again.The premium is an insurance policy for the big oil folks like Mr. Bush.

    8. KELMAL on September 25th, 2006 6:23 pm

      They close the alaskan pipeline and the price of gas goes down!!! I don’t get it !!!!!!!!!

    9. ayfit on September 25th, 2006 6:46 pm

      Check that #7-The premium is 20.00 per barrell not 20% per barrell.Bush’s ratings are up and so is his bottom line or balance wich ever you choose.There is no need for a terrorist premium…………

    10. punkingale on September 25th, 2006 7:13 pm

      I can wait to see how high gas prices wil be after the election. They will be astronomical if neocons win. When I was in school, 44 was a failing grade.

    11. ayfit on September 25th, 2006 7:50 pm

      #10 I love it!!!! Too bad he can’t run again.

    12. punkingale on September 25th, 2006 11:03 pm

      Ayfit, you must have misunderstood my post. We’re in deep shit because of Bush.

    13. Ramlady on September 26th, 2006 4:19 am

      Get a grip people. Market forces control how much a barrel of oil costs. Neither Bush nor Clinton or any other American president determines the price of oil. It just doesn’t work that way. Sorry for all you Bush and Republican haters out there; I know you all love to blame Bush for every bad thing that happens, but the president has nothing to do with the price of oil. Regardless of whether a Democrat or Republican is in office, if prices are high, the guy in the White House gets the blame; if prices are low, the guy in the White House gets the credit. Do any of you not remember the gas crisis in the mid-70′s with the long lines at the pump and high prices? Democrat Jimmy Carter was in office then. Remember?? Not to mention runaway inflation and 17% mortgage rates, but that’s another story. Ultimately, it is supply and demand that determines the price of oil, but there are a lot of factors that determine supply and demand. In the mid-70′s, demand outstripped the supply. Today, there is no supply problem for the most part, but demand is very high. Oil is a globally-traded commodity, just like precious metals (gold, silver, copper) or agriculture products (corn, wheat, etc.). Like all commodities, sometimes speculators drive the prices up with the expectation that prices will continue to go up. So they continue to buy even at high prices. Look how high gold has gone up in the last few years. I think it is around $700-800 an ounce, about what is was in the early to mid-80′s. About 10 years ago, it was around $200 an ounce. Same thing with copper which has risen dramatically in the last couple years. When speculators feel the price will not go higher, they stop buying and the price comes down. Naturally, oil goes up when there is unrest in the middle East, since that is where most of the world’s oil supply is located. Also, environmentalists have blocked attempts at building any more oil refineries in this country in the last 25 years. The ones we have are running at or near full capacity. Add to that, the EPA mandate for so many different gasoline formulations in different parts of the country but with the same number of refineries we had 25 years ago. Everybody agrees $3.00 a gallon gas stinks, and oil companies are making money hand-over-fist. You might as well share in the spoils of these huge profits; invest in oil stocks or futures and put some of those profits in your own pocket. That will take a little of the sting out of the high gas prices when you look at your quarterly statements. I’m not a financial adviser, but Vanguard has an excellent energy mutual fund that has done phenomenal lately. If you’re not already in the market, now may not be the best time to jump in though since prices have been falling recently.

      Just one other thing, we have capitalism in America, not socialism. I have heard many people say they don’t understand why Bush “LETS” the oil companies make so much money. Well if our government TOLD any business in America, whether it is Exxon or Microsoft, how much money they were ALLOWED to make, that would be socialism. Our free market is what has made us the richest country in the world. We do not LET the government step in and say when a company or an individual has made enough money. None of us can be 100% completely oil-independent, but there are ways to conserve: don’t drive any more than is necessary, buy a vehicle that gets better gas mileage, etc. When there is an over-supply due to decreased demand, the price will go down. Keep conserving, and the price will continue to go down. Personally, I look forward to the day, if it ever comes during my lifetime, when someone can perfect hydrogen fuel-cell technology to the point where it is econonically feasible. Then we can sit back and watch all these little dictator-run countries who now have us over a barrel (literally), dry up and blow away.

    14. Miss-Underestimated on September 26th, 2006 11:04 am

      Does anyone know what other commodity can be sold/traded from the Middle East? OK other than terroristS?

      I think this is the larger picture of GLOBAL ECONOMY.

    15. AYFIT on September 26th, 2006 11:05 am

      #12 I am with you 110%,I think you misunderstood my post. I was being sarcastic when I said -too bad he can’t run again-.We are on the same side on this one.#13 better be glad Clinton couldn’t run again,he would have won by a landslide,oh but you know that already right?

    16. AYFIT on September 26th, 2006 11:19 am

      #13 alot of what you say is true, alot is not,I do blame Bush for the terrorist premium on crude,I also remember the past SURPLUS VERSES THE present DEFICIT. Now verses then.No WMD’s not to mention a war against those who were not responsible on 9-11.America went after the wrong enemy.Plain and simpl.Osama is still atlarge,

    17. Joe_Public on September 26th, 2006 12:33 pm

      A little O/T but might get very interesting!


      **Watch FOX News Channel or go to http://foxnews.com for more

    18. para2legal on September 26th, 2006 2:19 pm

      Kudoos to Wal-Mart – conducting feasibility studies on ethanol, having conferences w/farmers, etc. If all goes well – will have test stations in a few years. Hey – if Brazil can do it so can we. Brazilians pay about $1 a gallon for ethanol. Obviously it’s cheaper than gasoline but it’s also better for the environment – cleaner to burn (and no, I’m not a tree hugger). We shouldn’t be held prisoners by big oil and their price gouging scams. We should have a choice. And that’s all I have to say about that.

    19. KELMAL on September 26th, 2006 7:20 pm

      kudoos to wal-mart for stocking everything in their store with things made in CHINA !! Then paying their employees $5 an hour.

    20. Ramlady on September 26th, 2006 11:02 pm

      #16 AYFIT, there is indeed a terrorism premium on oil because of the terrorists attacks or the threat of terrorist attacks, not because Bush is fighting terrorism. The war on terrorism is costing a lot of money, not to mention lives, but would you rather not fight it at all? I don’t want to harp on Clinton, but because of his administration’s lack of military response in 1993 after the first attack on the World Trade Center and our Marines killed and dragged through the streets in Somalia and the bombing of the U.S.S. Cole, etc., etc., the terrorists became emboldened and planned an even bigger attack on our soil on 9-11. If Clinton were still in office, or God forbid, Al Gore or John Kerry, they would be wringing their hands and apologizing to the terrorists for angering them to the point that they had no choice but to attack us. The greatest gift Clinton ever received as President was when the Republicans took control of Congress in 1994. He had no choice but to go along with the Republican-led Congress and then sat back accepted the credit for the great economy that “he” created. He was never able to implement a single one of his own programs as President, however, he does deserve credit for staying out of the way rather than throwing up roadblocks. Regardless of the hissy fit he threw during the Chris Wallace interview on Fox Sunday, he WAS weak on defense as president. Much of his popularity is due to the fact that he was the one sitting in the Oval Office when the Republican-controlled Congress was passing legislation that led to our successful economy, and he at least had the good sense to go along with it. I strongly disagree with Bush’s weak stand on illegal immigration, and I think he spends too much money. Spending is definitely out-of-control under the Bush administration, but much of that is due to the very expensive war on terror. Regardless of the high gas prices, the economy is even better now than under Clinton and unemployment is lower than under the 8 years under Clinton. Taxes are lower than under Clinton. I hope we do get Bin Laden. But when and if we do, terrorism is not going to stop just because he’s dead. We’re in this for the long haul even if it’s Hillary sitting in the Oval Office in 2008.

    21. Joe_Public on September 27th, 2006 1:45 pm


      **Watch FOX News Channel or go to http://foxnews.com for more

    22. pdh3 on September 27th, 2006 1:52 pm

      #13 – Have you ever heard of price gouging during a crisis? I do believe the oil companies are guilty of doing just that, and there were hearings to investigate that possibility. Of course nothing was done because we all know that oil companies have powerful lobbiests in DC, so the hearings were a show by our elected officials so they could pretend to the American public that they were concerned. Nothing was done about it, of course. Only the little guys selling gas to get people into their convenience store will be prosecuted, as well they should. But IMHO every oil executive should be sitting in jail as well. Making a profit is one thing, but to gouge consumers and make obscene amounts of record profits during the time your country is at war, and has suffered a catastrophic natural disaster is NOT the American Way. It’s greed, plain and simple. And the families of the military have to pay higher prices for goods and services caused by higher gas prices too, as did Katrina evacuees trying to get back on their feet. The entire US economy suffered needlessly. I do blame the current Administration, because Bush asked for the job, and that goes with the territory. I also blame Congress, because they wasted even more gov’t money on hearings that were useless. If Bush had done a better job as our leader, I’d be the first to say so. I don’t care what party he’s affliated with, and I did not vote for Jimmy Carter either. But after that gas shortage, did anyone in a leadership position in government do anything about our dependence on foreign oil? Did Bush? It is as much his responsibility as it was any previous President’s responsibility, to make us less vulnerable. So now we are hostage not only to foreign oil, but to our own oil companies’ bottom lines as well. It’s shameful, and it happened during Dubya’s watch.

    23. Ramlady on September 27th, 2006 4:56 pm

      pdh3, no President, Democrat or Republican, has had the foresight to come up with a comprehensive energy plan for our country. It did not begin under Dubya, as you call him. A comprehensive energy plan has been TALKED about as far back as President Ford, but nothing has ever been done. We do get less of our oil from the Middle East than we used to, but as long as we are addicted to oil, we will be dependent on foreign countries for it. Environmentalists start having a nervous breakdown at any mention of doing more drilling in our own country (ANWR) or off the coast of Florida. Do you know Cuba is letting China drill off their northern coast very close to Key West, FL, but we are not “allowed” to drill off our own side of the coast just 90 miles from Cuba? Conservation will go a long way to decreasing our dependence on foreign oil, but that does not happen overnight. Implementing a comprehensive energy plan, according to the experts, can take as long as 20 years. Since we have not planned for it, if we started today, it would be 20 years before we would see any real change. That is the fault of Democrats and Republicans. If you want to believe the oil companies are evil, that is your business. True, they have made astronomical profits since the high price of oil, but as I said before, if we buy less gasoline, therefore less oil, the price will come down. We need to get off oil, period. If you think the price of oil would be any lower right now with a Democrat in office instead of Bush, you are deluding yourself. In Al Gore’s book he spoke about his wish to add a $1.00 per gallon tax (“sin tax?”) on gasoline, in addition to all the other federal, state, and local taxes we already pay now on gas. It is his belief that if you make gas expensive enough, more like it is in Europe or Japan for example, people will be FORCED to drive less, thereby conserving fuel. Sound like a GREAT idea to you?

    24. pdh3 on September 27th, 2006 6:03 pm

      #23 – I do believe, if you carefully read what I wrote, that I said no one else made it a priority to find an alternative to foreign oil. But neither has Dubya. It is as much his place to do it as it was any of his predecessors. I also have stated that I am not a Democrat, but for some reason you want to insist that I am advocating for that party. You might also have found that out if you had actually read what I wrote. You are too busy defending a President with a lackluster record as a leader through troubled times. I also hold the American public responsible, bdecause lots of people drive gas-guzzling SUVs and refuse to see the big picture. I also never said I supported Al Gore, so you are making assumptions that are very wrong. I am disappointed in all of our leaders, since the oil crisis in the 1970′s, for not making sure we were never held hostage to foreign oil again. And I stand by the fact that oil companies have some of the most powerful lobbyists on Capitol Hill. This is the real reason we are still pumping gas instead of an alternative fuel at the pumps, and paying through the nose for the priviledge of lining some already wealthy pockets. Who knows what might have happened if we’d had another man as our President? You don’t. You can’t say things would be worse, and I can’t say they’d be better. No one knows. I do know that I am not happy with this administration.

    25. Ramlady on September 28th, 2006 5:00 am

      #24, show me where I INSISTED you were advocating for anything. If you truly believe no administration prior to the current one did anything to develop a comprehensive energy plan either, then why are you only ranting against Bush and not Clinton, Bush 41, Reagan, Carter, Ford, Nixon, Johnson, etc, etc.? I never said you were advocating for anyone nor did I accuse you of supporting Al Gore. I mentioned Al Gore once in my comment above where I stated that HE was in favor of a $1 per gallon gas tax on top of all the other taxes we already pay on a gallon of gas, and I happen to think that is a bad idea. I never accused you of anything. Maybe you are the one who should read more carefully. I personally don’t care whether you are a Democrat, Republican, Independent, Libertarian, or none of the above. After paying $3.50 a gallon for gas earlier this year, and now it is below $2.00 is a good thing, and judging from some people’s reactions, you would think the price had jumped to $4 rather than dropping to $2. Presidential approval ratings are directly tied, it seems, to the price of a gallon of gas these days, so the Democrats are all in a tizzy about it because they know the lower gas drops, the higher Bush’s poll numbers go, and that’s not good for them in the November elections. I’m not a Bush apologist. I have already stated what I disagree with him about. I just find it silly that some people lack a basic understanding of simple economics, and they will argue endlessly a point that has no basis in fact, only emotion. The Bush administration does a terrible job of getting out factual info about the economy to the public. The economy is in excellent condition due to the tax cuts, unemployment is lower than under the last administration, inflation is under control, interest rates remain relatively low. If you want to hate him because of the war in Iraq, go ahead, but if you are going to rail against him for that, at least have the honesty to acknowledge the good things his administration has accomplished. It is certainly your right to be unhappy with this administration; I was unhappy with the last one myself. You surely must know there are powerful lobbies in Washington other than oil companies. What about the ACLU, labor unions, pro-choicers, pro-lifers, NRA, insurance industry, drug companies, and on and on and on. The list is endless. There are special interests on both sides of the aisle.

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