New Op-ed up at Fox News: Defending Speculators
With oil prices closing above $125 a barrel of oil on Friday, angry politicians are blaming the higher prices on everything from speculators to greedy oil companies. Last week some Democratic Senators demanded “urgent action . . . to adequately investigate whether speculators are driving up prices.”
Democrats are proposing to protect the American people from “greedy oil traders who manipulate the market.” Senator Barack Obama wants price gouging by oil companies to be a federal crime.
Everyone wants lower prices, but many politicians seem unable to understand that speculators actually smooth out wild swings in prices. Speculators make profits by buying oil when the price is low and selling it when it is high, and doing that protects consumers. Tensions rose last week because of Venezuela financing Columbian terrorists. Columbia looked like it might retaliate and send troops into Venezuela, the world’s sixth largest oil exporter. . . .
More on the recent tensions between Columbia and Venezuela can be seen here.