I really can't help but wonder if the oil companies are intentionally bringing up the price of gasoline to get our attention during this election year.
Right now the Democrats are calling for us to dip into our reserves instead of expanding our offshore drilling. This call highlights a weakness in their party. They don't have an energy plan. That was one of Clinton's weaknesses as well. Their approach is similar to that of one who dips into their savings without planning out a budget. I don't think the emergency reserve is meant to be used to bring down the price of gasoline.
This is going to be a real challenge for Obama. Iraq and oil are tied together. If indeed he is going to pull us out he needs a very strong and solid energy plan. A PLAN. Not rhetoric about the environment and alternative fuel sources, etc. He needs a plan. I believe that what we are experiencing now in terms of oil prices is only just the beginning. Once we pull out of Iraq, there is no telling how consistent the importing of Oil to the U.S. will be. Without a strong western presence in the middle east, how will we protect our oil interests?
If the argument is that we shouldn't be over there protecting our oil interests then in what position does that put us here? If we can't drill here in the U.S. and we are forced to hit our reserves, what happens when we run out of reserves? Alternative fuel sources is a great idea but the transitioning into such is very slow and expensive. Engines have to be developed and the alternative fuel source has to be tested. What happens if we discover that the supply of ethenol can't meet our consumptive demands? Can we really grow enough "fuel" to match what we can pull out of the ground?
If we think that Gasoline is expensive now, an alternative fuel source isn't going to be cheaper.
America has some very difficult decisions to make this election year. Our focus is being shifted from the war in Iraq to our pocket books. Even I have been eating out less because cutting back on driving isn't something I can do right now. As a realtor, I live out of my car. I believe America will decide that we want our tanks filled at a reasonable price more than we want to be out of Iraq. So, in my opinion, Obama needs to be prepared for that and develop a plan for it.