Main | February 2009 »

January 30, 2009

Connecting the Dot: America's Down Fall

As the economy turns downward, we all wonder when it will rebound itself back to success again. So what caused this recession that we are in right now? Was it the work of the outgoing president, President George W. Bush? Was it the lack of responsibilities of big companies and their drive to maximize their profits? Or was it something else beyond you and me? In the years leading up to the economic downfall there were three things that I’ve always notice. One, the spend crazy and buy crazy of Americans’ who couldn’t afford to buy. Two, our need for oil or better yet, gasoline, so that we can function in our everyday life. And three, the continuous profits of big oil company even in supposed down economy.

Let us start with the oil company. On Friday, Exxon Mobile just posted a record breaking profit of $44.06 billion dollars. Is it strange to see the oil company post record profits and breaking previous records when almost everyone is losing their job? Yes and No. Yes, I find it strange how the oil companies would tell us that the rises in gas price are due to hard times, nature disaster such as hurricanes, tornados, and floods, and lack of supply. But if we look at the hard times, we see that most people are still buying and most are still spending. We saw it in Hurricane Katrina when gas price skyrocketed up to $5/gal. And we were all told that the hurricane hurt the oil company, but Exxon Mobile still posted a $36.13 billion profit.

But we can simply blame it on them; we crave oil and gas too much. Look at the vehicles that we drive. Look at the distance and just how much we drive in a year’s time. Most people from other parts of the world do not have over 100 thousand miles on any of their vehicle and if they do, they don’t drive the same size vehicles we do. On average there are 3 vehicles for every one person with a driver’s license. That’s a lot of cars and truck for just one person, and that’s a lot of money to be spent by one person.

Which brings me to my first reason about how we buy and spend too much money on things that we didn’t need. Between 2003 to 2006, the housing market jumped up nearly double from previous years. People were buying houses even thought they knew they probably weren’t going to be able to afford it in the long run. Along with that, people started to buy SUVs and Trucks, inefficient cars that didn’t have good gas mileage because they could. And while we were all enjoying the good times, we didn’t foresee doom coming.

Connecting the dots and fast track to today and lets think about what may caused the economic downturn. Our hunger for oil and gasoline. All things we buy and all the money we spend, it goes back to oil in some way or form. From the food we eat, to the work that we do, it all is influence by the oil company. We recently saw that food prices went up, farmers can no longer produce goods for us for the pay that they use to get years ago. Why? Because of the price of oil. The trucker who brings the good to the stores can’t afford to drive across country just so that we can have that Florida orange, airline going into bankruptcy because cost of fuel is on a rise. And to even pay our bills, we have to get to work. How do we get there? With our 1 in 3 cars that we have, even the price to ride public transportation is up. So oil do control us.

So what can be done? Nothing, we need it too much to even try anything. Oil will always post billions in dollar in profit and all we can do is watch. Solutions like “lets not buy gasoline for one day? will never work because they know we will need it in the next couple of days, so they get us back in those next few days by bring the prices up. The real possible solution that I’m sure no one will ever be able to do is to not drive anything for a whole weekend, and if possible a week.