Donald Trump is cheering the drop in oil prices. So am I. I don’t like paying more for gasoline than I can afford. So, I am enjoying watching the price of crude take a tumble.
But wait a second! Didn’t the president come into office declaring his intention to shore up the fossil fuel industry? He tossed some of the environmental regulations approved during the Obama administration, claiming they hurt drillers’ ability to explore for oil.
The other thing that hurt drillers was, um, the price of oil. Back when it was around $100 per barrel, pump jacks all over Texas and the rest of the Oil Patch that had gone silent when the prices fell were restarted. They began pumping the “Texas Tea” out of the ground.
Why, then, does the president say this in a Twitter message:
Oil prices getting lower. Great! Like a big Tax Cut for America and the World. Enjoy! $54, was just $82. Thank you Saudi Arabia, but let’s go lower!
His Pennsylvania Avenue cheering section seems to suggest now that he wants the price to keep falling. A lot of West Texas wildcatters are unhappy with the trend. They don’t want to see it continue. They want it to go the other way.
I happen to hope it doesn’t, just like the president.
But why didn’t the president say anything in that tweet about developing alternative energy sources? President Obama made quite a push to do so during his two terms in office. The result was that we became effectively “energy independent.” The U.S. of A. became the world’s leading oil producer. Meanwhile, we invested in wind, solar and hydropower to take the burden off those wildcatters and Big Oil to keep producing.
Which is it now? Are we going to cheer the plunging oil prices or wish them to increase?
Donald Trump, per usual, is sending a mixed — or perhaps confused — message to the world.
And of course, the bouquet the president tossed to Saudi Arabia — in light of his hideous acceptance of the Saudis’ denial in the murder of a U.S.-based journalist — sends another chilling message altogether. More on that one to come.