Thursday, January 24, 2008

Great news!

Once again, the oil companies are rolling in the dough! From CLG:

Exxon Mobil, the world's largest publicly traded oil company, is within striking distance of setting an all-time profit record - again. Analysts are expecting the company to post solid quarterly and full-year earnings next Friday - and if the results top forecasts, Exxon could end up reporting the highest profit ever for a U.S. company. "Exxon is likely to have record quarterly earnings," said Fadel Gheit, a senior energy analyst at Oppenheimer. "For every $1 [increase] in the price of oil, Exxon makes [another] $125 million for the quarter."
If that math is actually valid (Matty Boy?), then HOLY SHIT. That $1 => $125 million formula really puts it in perspective, eh? But gee, I'm sure big business really needs those tax cuts (while cutting food stamps and unemployment benefits! Yay! Fuck the poor! Way to go, Nancy!) that Nancy Pelosi gave to Bush! They've got to help the economy, after all!

Meanwhile, I'm starting to think we'll have $4/gallon gasoline by summertime.

Speaking of the "economic stimulus" package, Tengrain pointed out something I've been thinking for a while:

But the thing that just about everyone is missing is this: to pay for these tax cuts, we are adding to the deficit. China and others who are bankrolling us are watching their investment lose value as the deficit increases and as the interest rates decline. They are going to stop bankrolling us at some point, and then watch the freefall.
True dat, Tengrain. I realize that republicans (and most politicians) seem to have forgotten that our government's been pretty much writing hot checks every day since moRon Reagan told schoolkids that ketchup was a vegetable and started dreaming about lasers in space. But really--how long can this go on? How far can a country go into debt until the whole house of cards just falls apart? Ten trillion? Fifteen trillion? Twenty trillion? How long before some of these other countries get sick and tired of our imperialist bullshit and pull our plug?

Remember that friend you loaned fifty bucks to in college, because he said he really needed it to buy groceries? He promised he'd pay you back in a couple of weeks, but of course a couple of weeks turned into a couple of months. So a few months go by, during which your pal avoided you like he owed you money (which he did, the lousy jerk!), and then you found you were a little low on cash, so you finally put aside your disgust with the whole idea of asking for your money back (seeing as how it is YOUR money after all!) but of course, friend didn't have it--some bills came in, Mom and Dad hadn't sent him any money, yadda yadda. Typical. So you blew the guy off, and then that next weekend, you went out and there was said friend at the bar, drinking that $50 for all he was worth. And you thought, "That asshole!"

Well, that's the US Government, folks. We're the assholes who are borrowing billions of dollars from friends, neighbors--shit, whoever will give us any money--and the whole time Condi's talking that noise about how fundamentally sound our economy is, and that corpse Greenspan's spewing jibba-jabba about how we're not in a recession. And yet, to get the supposedly robust economy stimulated (if it's so robust, why does it need stimulating?), they're going to throw a bunch of tax breaks to business (surprise) and a bunch of tiny rebate checks to a bunch of us. Meanwhile, China and Japan are standing in the door of the bar, thinking, "Those assholes!"

Many other people who are much smarter than I have already pointed out that most of those rebate checks will be used to pay bills, or will be put into savings (that's what I'm going to do with mine, just as I did in 2001). Most of the people who need these checks will pay bills, pay down their credit card debt. And the credit card companies will get even more money to spend on all those stupid "You've been pre-approved!" card offers to people who can barely afford to pay their light bills.

If there's one phrase I'd use to describe our economy--our capitalistic, "free market," robber-baron-run economy--I can tell you that it would NOT be "fundamentally sound." We're in a deep pile of economic shit right now, and it's only getting deeper as we throw money down the pit of our endless wars and empire of military bases.

We're in deep doo-doo.
But hey, great news!--Exxon's CEO will probably get himself big old bonus check, and the shareholders will be thrilled with their dividends. Maybe they'll go shopping.


Dr. Monkey Von Monkerstein said...

Let's hope that economic stimulus helps them make even more money next year!

Randal Graves said...

Can I borrow $50? I need to go buy some booze. Medicinal purposes, you understand.

Karen Zipdrive said...

I'm proud to say that two years ago I cut up my Exxon/Mobil credit card and stopped buying their gas, oil and convenience store goodies.
I try to buy Citgo gas as much as possible. They import zero oil from the Middle East and all their oil comes from Venezuela.
When Hugo Chavez said the UN General Assembly Room, "smelled like sulphur because the devil was just here" after Bush left the podium, he gained a loyal customer.

FranIAm said...

Golly! Wow, I was really concerned about the big companies and I was so darned excited to hear that our government was so focused on getting them the tax relief they need!

I mean, that's how trickle down works?

Right? Right?

Distributorcap said...

randal, i have a $50 with Laura's pciture on it --- it is all yours

with the exxon CEOs raking it in -- i finally figured out how trickle down works --- it trickles to the pool boys and gardeners who keep their mcmansions in shape

dguzman said...

Exactly, Dr. Monkey! Lord knows, they DESERVE IT!

Randal--I hear ya, man.

Karen, I stopped going to Exxon back when the Valdez wreck occurred and Exxon did such a half-ass shit job of cleaning it up. To this day, I still call Exxon "Seal Killers" and don't go there. I too have been trying to only buy Citgo gas.

Fran, well of course it is! Trickle trickle, can't you feel the money comin' down?

DCap--those pool boys are also working hard to keep the rich white ladies satisfied, if you know what I'm sayin'.

Matty Boy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Matty Boy said...

Hey, dg; I don't see the raw numbers they are using for the price of crude vs. increase in profits formula. Since the discussion is about profits for the entire quarter, they should just be talking about the price going up for a day, but instead they should be discussing the average price over the quarter. Looking at some data I have lying around, I get these rough averages for a barrel of crude.

4/07-6/07: $66 a barrel
7/07-9/07: $74 a barrel
10/07-12/07: $91 a barrel

Like you, I'm a little surprised prices haven't increased more by now. I'm doing a post on that this weekend.

Anonymous said...

I suppose those CEOs and the fatcats (no offense meant to the fat or the cat) do go shopping, they'll likely go buy private islands or Italian villas or Scottish castles. That won't help the US economy. So typical of them!

TomCat said...

The one success story of Bush and the GOP is No Millionaire Left Behind!

two crows said...

and, btw, if we possibly can, it will behoove us all to put that money into savings.
if I remember rightly, the last time we received a 'rebate' we had to pay it back to the IRS when tax time rolled around.

it never was OUR money. we were supposed to use it to spend down the debt -- then pay it back later.
doesn't that qualify as a loan?

meanwhile, the corporations received grants which they did not have to pay back.