Nicholas Economides, if I understood him correctly, honestly seems to think that _just talking about maybe drilling more in or near the US_ has caused the recent drop in oil prices. Sure it has.
Think Lovin' Spoonful (or, apparently, any number of other performers, including a recent Aly & AJ for Disney version that hit it big in 2005). "Do you believe in magic"...
This comment came up in the context of making fun of an op-ed piece at the LA Times:
Which has a memorable quote of its own:
"Oil exploration is an industry America should look to expand right after alchemy research and pyramid building."
Calling Joel Stein a hypocrite is a popular activity (and probably justified -- he'd much rather someone else destroyed their political and physical environment with oil extraction industries while he got to enjoy the results in his yellow Mini Cooper), and he clearly is trying very hard to be provocative. Nevertheless, kind of a funny, if at times offensive, piece. It's basically a summary of _Gusher of Lies_, which, IIRC, I bought, read, reviewed and donated to the local library earlier this year. I don't remember being hugely impressed.
Still, none of it compares to the plug for the nuclear industry I quit watching at CNN while surfing my way over to CNBC.
There is a little decent commentary on the price of oil out there. People are noticing that this is at least in part a currency thing, which then turns into a discussion of why the dollar is strengthening (gotta love that jargon); I'm inclined to agree with the (few) other people having this discussion, which is that it isn't so much the dollar getting stronger as the Euro getting weaker. Unfortunately, everyone is so busy talking about the global oil market, they are not talking about all the bilateral agreements that control who has access to buy which bit of fossil fuel at what price. Which is a pity, given what's going on in South Ossetia right now.
I'm having a little split brain moment. On one side, I'm trying to calculate whether disruption of natural gas supplies to Europe net helps or hurts the US (stronger dollar means we can buy more oil and we couldn't buy that natural gas anyway BUT if the Europeans get hammered, they can't afford to buy our cheaper goods and our efforts to ramp up the manufacturing sector fail miserably, worsening our trade balance, etc.). On the other side, I'm working my way through my extended family on my dad's side, trying to figure out if there's a diplomatic way to determine whether my cousin D. is still in Georgia. Not that I _like_ D., nor have I talked to him in probably a decade or more, but still (and right now, I sound like Sookie Stackhouse), he is my cousin, and that's a war zone.