April 2, 2008
Like some mafia dons hauled before a congressional racketeering committee came the heads of the five largest American oil companies. This happens every time gas prices go up. Members of Congress yesterday postured and threatened new taxes to portray themselves as defenders of little people.
Just once I’d like to see oil company executives go on offense. They should wear buttons in their lapels with a number that represents federal and state taxes on gasoline. They should ask congress and states to cut those taxes if they want prices to go down.
They should challenge members on their refusal to allow for new exploration and say they are partially responsible for higher prices. ANWAR and the Gulf of Mexico could produce billions of barrels of oil
When threatened with higher taxes and the removal of tax breaks, they should ask about all the waste, fraud and abuse currently engaged in by an irresponsible congress addicted to pork and pet projects.
Gas prices are high for two reasons – not enough supply and too much demand. The market works; it should be allowed to continue to do so.
Cal Thomas is a nationally syndicated columnist based in Washington, D.C.