During recessions, the rich always profit — mainly because there’s no one else who can put money into turning a profit.
“Exxon Mobil reported the best quarterly profit ever for a corporation on Thursday, beating its own record,” reports the New York Times on Aug. 1. “The company’s income for the second quarter rose 14 percent, to $11.68 billion, compared to the same period a year ago. That beat the previous record of $11.66 billion set by Exxon in the last three months of 2007.”
With profits at approximately $90,000 a minute, how does an oil company get away with making record profits when the price of gas is taking devastating chunks out of the average consumer’s wallet?
As the price of a product rises, its producers become more able to glean profits by taking the opportunity to exploit the public, adding their own increase onto the already high price.
The unprecedented cost imposed on the public is the reason for these profits, not the production volumes of gas and oil.
Oil tycoons like Exxon Mobile are not going to suffer from increasing gas prices as long as consumers are still willing to pay. Not only is gas a commodity that this nation runs on, but on top of that, speculators are raising the price of gas by creating a feeling of hysteria, suggesting that there may not be enough oil to go around, and thereby justifying the price.
The plain and simple fact is that eventually there will come a time when oil is not going to be as obtainable as it is now. Why are Exxon Mobile and other such companies not shifting more of their resources to finding renewable, eco-friendly energy resources, rather than pumping more money into finding more drill sites?
If it’s not broken, why try and fix it, right? The problem with that mentality is that soon it will be broken, and we will not be prepared for the consequences of little to no oil. For any company to survive, adaptation is needed. Right now proactive adaptation seems more important for not only the environment, but also for the upkeep of the standard of living that we all seem so inclined to keep.
If companies like Exxon Mobile want to continue to makes such ridiculous profits, they need to corner the market on whatever the “oil of the future” will be, otherwise, when the switch inevitably occurs, they will be left in the dust. By doing this soon rather than later, not only will their business succeed, but the earth will also be left a somewhat better place.