Exploring the Possibilities


Walter Williams has an interesting article that puts the current price of gasoline into an historical context. He also raises the question of the OPEC countries possibly being allied with US environmental interests to restrict domestic exploration and production, as that restriction ensures OPEC's leadership position in world oil production remains unchallenged.

An even more likely possibility is one that I raised in a past AT article ("Running on Fumes?" 3/7/05): Iraq is still over 75% UNEXPLORED for oil, yet their known reserves rank them number 2 or 3 in the world. If their domestic situation stabilizes and Iraq really begins to develop their domestic oil industry, there's no telling how much oil they'd be able to deliver to the world's market. The commensurate downward effect on oil pricing resulting from an Iraq delivering double or triple its current 1.8—2 million bpd would be highly "unpopular," to say the least, in Riyadh.

This fact is certainly not lost on Iraq's oil—producing neighbors, especially Saudi Arabia and Iran. The entire Middle—Eastern oil bloc has a financially—vested interest (by far the strongest interest of all) in preventing the emergence of a stable, democratic, economically—vibrant Iraq.

It's amazing that this angle is never mentioned by any politicians or analysts.

Steve Feinstein   8 31 05