In this issue

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Sept. 26, 2006 / 4 Tishrei, 5767

The September Surprise

By Rich Lowry

Printer Friendly Version
Email this article

http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | When will someone call for an investigation of the oil companies for their latest transgression? In a blatant and unconscionable violation of their responsibility to their shareholders, oil executives are apparently manipulating the market to drive down prices and their own profits.

Why? Perhaps they enjoy the power rush that comes from yanking around such a vast worldwide market. Perhaps they are feeling less greedy this month. Perhaps they grew bored with rising prices. Whatever the reason for the drop in the price of gas lately, it cannot simply be a product of the forces of the free market — at least not if we remember the rhetoric of Democrats just a few months ago.

Back then, Democrats issued thunderously stupid denunciations of oil executives for engineering the price increases, and blamed the Bush administration for not doing anything to stop it. In May, Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid declared that "the nation's eyes are focused on the big-oil companies' greed and enormous profits," noting that "the oil companies blame international tension and demand, and then increase their prices. I blame the Bush administration."

Of course he did. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, naturally, cited "the Cheney Secret Energy Task Force." By their lights, the Bush administration must have done yeoman's work the past few weeks, taking the average price of a gallon of gas from a high of more than $3 to $2.40. Rather than credit Bush, of course, Reid and Pelosi might want to revert to the economically rational explanation for price fluctuations. As Cato Institute energy expert Jerry Taylor patiently explains for the umpteenth time, the price of gas always increases in the spring, in advance of the surge of demand in the summer driving season, and then declines in the fall, when demand slackens.

This is an entirely predictable economic rhythm. So, with their spring-time demagoguery over increasing prices, Democrats set a trap for themselves in the fall, just as the election heated up. Brilliant. They created their own pro-Bush "September Surprise."

Not too long ago, the Democrats agitated for an anti-price-gouging law to apply to wholesale-fuel markets, because, in the words of Maryland Sen. Barbara Mikulski, "it is often the large, vertically integrated oil companies that dictate the prices that gasoline retailers can charge." Note the word: dictate. The large, vertically integrated oil companies must have had a change of heart. Democrats also demanded a windfall-profits tax on the oil companies. If they had imposed the tax, would they give the revenue back, since oil companies are now better behaved?

Behind the decline of the price of gas is the fall in the worldwide price of a barrel of crude. Oil prices had hit nearly $80 a barrel in July, and are below $60 a barrel today. This is the market at work. When prices increase, producers step up their production to make more profits and consumers scale back their consumption. This means more supply and less demand, which translates into falling prices. There also might be a global economic slowdown; there haven't been any major hurricanes hitting the Gulf Coast; and the U.S. confrontation with Iran is on a low simmer — all factors that reduce demand and ensure a reliable supply.

It is understandable that Democrats couldn't resist gas-price demagoguery. It was an easy target. But the party is especially inclined to such foolishness in two ways. First, it tends to believe that any unfortunate economic development is a product of malevolent people rather than of the forces of the market. Second, it doesn't have much of an agenda to run on, so gas-price opportunism seemed a fine electoral platform. "I think the American public on this issue, on this issue alone, may decide the election this fall," said Connecticut Sen. Chris Dodd.

Oh, well. Democrats will have to find some other economic sector to malign, at least until gas prices increase again next spring.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

Comment by clicking here.

Rich Lowry Archives

© 2006 King Features Syndicate