Discussion in 'Current Events' started by cheryl, Jul 11, 2008.

  1. cheryl

    cheryl I started this. Staff Member

    Do you think that market speculators have an influence on oil prices? makes it really easy to send either an email or a printed letter to your local congressman. You enter your address and they look up who represents you and their email address. Then the site generates a personalized letter for that representative you choose. They even send the email for you or you can print out a letter for mailing.

    The following is the default letter that the site generates. You have an opportunity to edit the letter before it's sent so if you think that this is hooey and that market speculation has no effect on oil prices you can change the letter to express that point of view too.

    The Honorable ________
    House of Representatives
    1728 Longworth House Office Building
    Washington, DC 20515-0548

    Re: Act now to lower energy costs

    Dear Representative ________:

    High prices for energy are hurting me and my family and I strongly urge Congress to act immediately to lower costs for all Americans.

    Rampant speculation in the commodities futures market is driving up prices out of proportion to marketplace demands. The problem is speculators are increasingly buying and selling commodities such as oil even though they have no intention of using the product. The unregulated speculators are pocketing billions of dollars at our expense. The cost of food has gone up, the price at the pump has gone way up, and I'm already concerned about how much more it will cost to heat my home this winter.

    To lower oil prices for all Americans we need to increase domestic supply, exploration, alternative energy sources and conservation. We also must protect bona fide speculation and hedging.

    To address excessive speculation, Congress should promptly take the following actions:

    1. Re-establish strict position limits on energy commodities - Position limits have existed since 1936 and work well at curtailing excessive speculation. Any trader that is not hedging with the intention of taking physical delivery of a related commodity must be subject to strict position limits in all contract months.

    2. Close the London Loophole - Foreign Boards of Trade with U.S. Terminals trading futures contracts that cash-settle against U.S. contracts should face the exact same regulations as U.S. exchanges. It is not fair for U.S. futures exchanges to face more regulation than their foreign counterparts trading in U.S. commodities.

    3. Regulate "swaps trades" - All trades in the over-the-counter (OTC) swaps market must be subject to strict position limits. It is unfair to exempt swaps dealers from the same regulations that other market participants face. Experts have estimated the size of the OTC markets as nine or ten times larger than the futures markets.

    4. Fully close the "Enron loophole" - "Exempt Commercial Markets" that trade U.S. contract which are nearly identical to fully regulated contracts should no longer be exempt from the same regulations that apply to Designated Commercial Markets such as the NYMEX.

    5. Bring transparency to all energy trading - Positions of traders in all markets should be reported to the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) and should be properly categorized based on where the trades occur and who is doing the trading. This will provide vital information that can be used to detect and prevent market manipulation.

    Thank you for listening to my concerns. By adopting these common-sense solutions, Congress can dramatically reduce the price of oil and gas, providing immediate relief for businesses and families like mine.


  2. brett636

    brett636 Well-Known Member

    If that included allowing off shore drilling along with tapping into our own oil shale reserves I would be all for it. The problem I have is there is no magic bullet meaning there is no one solution that will solve this oil problem. This is an excellent time for both republicans and democrats to work together and come up with a comprehensive solution that involves both cutting out speculators and increases drilling into our own reserves estimated in the 2 trillion barrel range. These two short term solutions will buy the market enough time to get more fuel efficient and alternative fuel vehicles on our roads so countries like Iran and Saudi Arabia don't have so much influence on our economy.
  3. tonyexpress

    tonyexpress Whac-A-Troll Patrol Staff Member

    Gas Price Protest
    To the U.S. Congress: Make Gas Cheaper NOW by:

    • Increasing American oil production -- Drill here, drill now
    • Building and expanding U.S. refineries
    Here's another one...

    Drill Here Drill Now Pay Less

    How about crazy Cramer?
  4. scratch

    scratch Least Best Moderator Staff Member

    I was watching some show and I think it was Ben Stein that said he was in a meeting with some of these oil speculators. Most of them were ex-Enron guys, and they were laughing at the ridiculous profits they were making. I have always thought the oil industry was a big ripoff, its nothing but greed right now. The Arabs don't care if we buy from them, China and India can easily take our place as their customers. I am all for any kind of alternative sources of energy. We need to invest big time right now in nuclear, solar, wind, coal, ethanol, hydrogen, or whatever it takes to break our dependence on oil.

    I had already sent these e-mails to my Congressman, David Scott, and my two Senators. I got two replies back that looked like form letters. David Scott, a Democrat I will vote against, just quoted his party line that we don't need to really do anything, and more drilling won't do much good. Saxby Chambliss, one of my Senators, is all for drilling and trying to force some control over these speculators. We need to do something, there are already riots over gas prices in other parts of the world. It is mind boggling the billions of dollars we are sending overseas to these other countries, and a lot of them are not friendly to us at all.
  5. moreluck

    moreluck golden ticket member

    Nancy Pelosi's phone # 1-202-225-0100

    Call and tell the Dems. to get off their duffs and get busy with drilling in the U.S.
  6. tieguy

    tieguy Banned

    A question out of my own ignnorance. Does oil have to trade on the commodities market? Can it be taken off that market and trade via normal supply and demand.

    If conditions were reversed and the arabs were looking at selling it for 5 dollars a barrel would they agree to do so or fix a higher price for sale.