Friday, October 28, 2005

Companies Post Multibillion Dollar Profits Thanks To Hurricanes

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By Elaine Meinel Supkis

Thanks to the hurricanes and oil company-sponsored wars, the price of fuels has shot up to the stratosphere and the oil giants posted record-breaking profits. This isn't top headline news in the media. Congress slashes aid to the poor.

From the New York Times:
Big Rise in Profit Puts Oil Giants on Defensive
Not exactly a gripping headline. "Big rise" is an understatement here. How about "Gigantic Windfall"?
A sudden interruption in oil supplies sent prices and profits skyrocketing, prompting Exxon's chief executive to call a news conference right after his company announced that it had chalked up record earnings.

"I am not embarrassed," he said. "This is no windfall."
ExxonMobil spends lots of money advertising in the NYT. So when these robber barons say this money isn't due to the violent winds befalling the Gulf then the Times has to nod yes.
Exxon Mobil, the world's largest oil company, said yesterday that its third-quarter net income jumped 75 percent, to $9.92 billion. Its profit in the first nine months of this year - $25.42 billion - already equals its full-year earnings for 2004. This year's sales, which topped $100 billion in the last quarter, are expected to exceed those of Wal-Mart.

Another oil giant, Royal Dutch Shell, reported a 68 percent jump in profits yesterday, to $9.03 billion. Chevron is expected to post a profit of more than $4 billion today.

This year is shaping up as an exceptionally lucrative one for the oil industry, thanks to strong global demand, tight supplies and high prices for oil and natural gas. While the idea that the Bush administration was considering imposing a windfall profits tax was knocked down yesterday by officials, longstanding resentments against Big Oil are resurfacing and could end up imposing some additional burdens on the industry.
The Roosevelt family saved the robber barons by preventing them from going all the way, just most of the way. Right now, our rulers are going all the way so we are seeing dead Americans all over the place and will see many more before this train wreck is done. They frankly want this, killing off "excess" population is one of their dreams going way back to the 19th Century. To unlock the mineral, vegetable and animal wealth of America, the vast native population was nearly exterminated. Think they won't do this for gain today? Eh?

The vast profits will be used to buy more political power so they can get Congress to cut heating aid, food stamps, housing for the poor, medicine for the disabled, etc, while granting tax cuts and benefits to the world's richest corporations. The ridiculous "Energy Bill" crafted by crafty Cheney was a total give away for the energy giants.

Further, America doesn't need more refineries, we need to control the urge to consume vast quantities of fuel. As a person who uses a car that gets great milage, I resent all those one passenger behemoths hogging the roads and eating up natural resources. CAFE standards left out these classes of vehicles and we knew for years that this was a total disaster and now we are all paying for it.

But this is no reason to not tax the windfall profits of the oil giants! This loot has to be recaptured by the people via taxes. This is what happens when windfalls happen! We could stop running up huge deficits if we tax this profit at 50%. Or better, 80%!

There is no reason oil companies should siphon off all this public wealth and pocket it or be tempted to use it to buy political power. This is unacceptable in a democracy. But then, these same powers own the media, own the transmission of information, they are secure in the knowledge that they can deflect blame to others. Like Saddam, for example.

Time to attack Iran, right?

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