The Wall Street Journal is reporting on the prospect of $200 a barrel price for oil by the end of the year. The price has shot up over the last 7 years but that increase has been much more rapid in the last six months. During that time we have seen it go up from $100 to $150 a barrel. If the price actually hits the $200 prediction, that will translate to well over $6 a gallon for gasoline at the pump.
The pain at the pump is only the beginning of the budget crunch for the average working family. The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported today that natural gas is also at a high for this time of year. Experts in that industry are predicting major sticker shock for energy customers, especially when we try to heat our homes in winter. Natural gas futures have jumped 82 percent since just the start of the year. The story reports that increases in the price of natural gas have already driven up electricity bills twice since March.
All of these costs are overburdening working families and impacting our already fragile economy. This is where the failed Bush policies of irresponsible tax cuts for the wealthy, coddling Big Oil, and lacking a forward thinking energy policy has brought us. U.S. Senator John McCain has been a rubber stamp for those polices in the Senate. He supported Bush as much as 100 percent in 2008 and 95 percent in 2007. In addition, McCain now says that he will make Bush’s tax cuts for the rich permanent. Actually he will go even further by offering unprecedented tax giveaways to some of the biggest corporations in the country. Under this economic scheme, Big Oil would get some $3.8 billion in tax giveaways. To the average person, such a massive giveaway to the very industry that has us over a barrel makes no sense at all. To John McCain it’s just business as usual.