“Got kitesurfing on the mind, mixed with some search & classification tech, and a dab of political ranting”

Gas price & profit outrage is not our right, it’s our obligation

Posted by direwolff on October 30, 2005

Well, I just picked up some additional news coverage which is leading me to a follow-up on my previous post on this matter.  This first Washington Post article ties back to my price gouging comments.

With respect to this next article which you can read the full article for yourself, I wanted to post the dichotomy of perception by the oil companies.  In one paragraph we read:

"Exxon chairman Lee R. Raymond said in a statement that the company "acted responsibly" in its pricing and said its fourth-quarter profits would come nowhere close to the $9.9 billion in the third quarter."

…and a little further in the article it says:

"Besides Exxon's 75 percent jump in profits, Royal Dutch Shell reported Thursday that its third-quarter net income rose 68 percent to $9 billion and Conoco Phillips on Wednesday said that its third-quarter profit rose 90 percent to $3.8 billion. ChevronTexaco is expected to report earnings Friday of $3.9 billion, a jump of 53 percent over the third quarter of 2004."

Note, that these profits are being earned in a commoditized industry.  Yikes!!!  If this is acting responsibly then our heads of industry (and their shareholders, don't forget them, they own the companies), have lost all sense of decency and integrity.  But then again, in hearing President Bush Jr. recently say that Libby was a patriot after the treasonous act he committed (which we can be pretty sure that the buck doesn't stop with him, perhaps "decency" just goes by a different face these days…I feel so out of touch).

How do we re-establish the trust that's required for all economic and social systems to operate smoothly?  I don't know the answer, but I fear that things are going to get worse before they get better.


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