Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Demanding To Know

While the extremist nutbags in the Republican Party continue to hold the nation hostage, the rest of the world seems to have gotten tired of their pointless jumping up and down, and seems to have moved on without them.

President Obama has announced he's officially nominating Janet Yellen to be the next head of the Fed later today, a job few would wish on even their worst enemy right now. Major League Baseball's post-season continues, too, with a particular Atlanta Braves fan catching some notoriety with his topical way to complain about the way his team's season ended. The push for immigration reform also continued on Tuesday, with a massive protest on Capitol Hill that saw several members of Congress get arrested. An embarrassing and infuriating ruling in a Nebraska Supreme Court case also hit the media yesterday, that we may dig into deeper, later this week.

It's not that Americans have stopped caring about either the Republican-caused government shutdown or the looming debt ceiling crisis. It's just that most sane Americans realize until Speaker Boehner decides act like a real leader, not much is going to change.

Sure, we could act like the Nebraska Supreme Court or even that cheeky Braves fan, and demand something outrageous - like to know why the price of gasoline is nearly 30¢ per gallon higher near our Lincoln, Nebraska offices than it is an hour away in Omaha. Of course, our demanding that information wouldn't be any more effective than the current Tea Party demands that President Obama kill the ACA, his signature legislation - and frankly, we don't need idiots like that to give us the good news about those gas prices anyway.

While earlier this year, gasoline in Eastern Nebraska was more expensive than almost anywhere else in the nation, the price of fuel both in Nebraska and nationwide is falling right now, for a number of reasons. One of those reasons is that the price of oil continues to fall, down to $103 per barrel on Monday. That price drop, in part, is being caused by the Republican government shutdown, which is temporarily slowing the demand for petroleum products.

Oil refiners have also had a relatively problem free year, and with Tropical Storm Karen fizzling out recently, oil production in the Gulf has also continued without weather-related issues. The Wall Street Journal says the U.S. is also on track to become the world's largest oil and natural gas producer this year. Oil market experts have even said that as long as market conditions remain stable, prices for a gallon of gas could easily drop below $3 in many areas of the country.

It's that last caveat that's still sticking in our brains, however - that as long as market conditions remain stable, low gas prices will remain.

If Republicans in Congress don't hurry up, stop the hostage taking, and do the jobs we've all sent them to Washington to do - namely, pay the nation's bills - that could destabilize most markets in a major way, including the oil and gas markets. As we said earlier, however, demanding those fools do their job isn't very effective, and it's not like any of us can see into the future, and determine when those tea partiers will grow up and act responsibly.

Maybe we'll go gas up the car and drive across some of their lawns, and see if that motivates them instead.