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Comments for: Friday, April 13, 2012: Fort Knox privatization, ‘second chances’ and Bangor’s city forest

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  • Anonymous

    Demand for oil is at the lowest it’s been in over a decade and the supply of oil is up from what it was 3 years ago. Oil companies have made over a trillion in profits during the last decade. This should all add up to low gas prices, but it doesn’t because of the increased speculation in the market. 10 years ago, speculators controlled only 30% of the oil futures market, but today they control 80%. They buy and sell back and forth, essentially gambling, trying to make a profit. This turns into about an added 75 cents to a 1.00 per gallon at the pump! It reaches much further of course since fuel prices can cause food prices to increase (between machinery at farms and delivery trucks). It’d be one thing if these prices reflected actuality, but increasingly, we’re simply paying a gambler’s tax.

  • kcjonez

    Henry Smith–We all feel the pain at the pump and regardless of who deals with it or how it is dealt with, the price of petroleum products is going to continue to increase in the future.  It does add insult to injury to know that a few unscrupulous “traders” are extracting billions of dollars from us with their legalized gambling on Wall St.  Executive Order price controls are a possible way to address the problem but I would rather see a return to progressive taxation, even a maximum wage.  If we take away the incentive to extract obscene profits from the system, then these traders will have a choice–give the windfall back to the government/taxpayers, settle for a more modest fortune, or get a real/productive job.  

  • Anonymous

    The Reinvestment and Recovery Act funded six new buses for the Bangor BAT system. These buses are clean, comfortable and reliable. A new route has recently been added to serve outer Hammond Street.
    As gas prices rise, investment in public transportation makes more and more sense. It stimulates the economy by allowing people to get to work without a car and thus keep more of their hard-earned money to spend at local businesses. This is much better economic policy than manipulating gas prices through price controls. A monthly bus pass is $45, or about 11 gallons of gas at current prices, and goes a whole lot farther.

  • Anonymous

    WVOM gradfly, Ric Tyler is a self admitted speculator. I don’t see the tea baggers going after him for the high price of gas. I quess that is only reserved for a black democrat president.

    • Anonymous

      Skin color again? Shame on you.

      • Anonymous

        Shame on you for being a tea bagger.

        • Anonymous

          I have never said I was a Tea Party member, should I say “shame on you for being a (whatever the heck I assume you are)”?
          The shame should be yours for making such a statement.

  • Anonymous

    Mr Slater-I for one am waiting to see exactly what Councilor Longo had in mind when he made his motion “for one more chance.”  He made himself feel good about what he did but so far has failed other wise to “help” resolve this situation.  He has at this juncture the opportunity to act as a facilitator/mediator for a viable solution to this situation.  If nothing has happened to resolve the situation one can only conclude his “feeling good” about it was the end.   He has failed to realize that this situation all be it difficult requires him to step back up and conclude it.  The council has the responsibility to the taxpayers to act.  I am aware is extremely difficult to “throw out” a family but so far in this case that seems to be the only solution given all the prior “chances” this family has had.

  • Anonymous

    Henry, you are right about the reason for the high price of gas being a lack of leadership from Obama. His answer for a lack of energy policy is to suggest something called a “Buffett Rule” that  fixes nothing (another feel good bill). We need a president that can actually develop a budget as this one has never done that.

    • Anonymous

      You are delusional if you think any president — Democrat or Republican — can influence oil prices.

      • Anonymous

        The delusion lies with anyone that actually believes the President is powerless when it come to influencing oil prices. If Obama re-opened the off-shore drilling areas that he put off limits when he took office, and opened the ANWAR for drilling, released permits and told the environmentalists to take a hike, oil prices would start to fall. Then, when the first drill bit hit the ground and other countries saw that we were serious, oil prices would fall dramatically. 

        Then Obama could work with the Congress to relieve their stranglehold on different blends and unify the production of gasoline into 4 or 5 blends at the most. This, in itself, would reduce the price of a gallon of gas by up to 20 percent.

        There’s a lot the President could do. Instead, he makes stupid excuses. And the left covers for him. Pitiful.

        • Anonymous

          Sounds like nationalization.  Chavez anyone?  Drilling is up, we’re producing more than we can economically refine.  Not everything is as simple as you and others maintain.

          • Anonymous

             We need more refining capacity especially on the east coast.

          • Anonymous

            We not only need refining capacity on the East coast I would suggest that instead of sending Canadian oil to the Gulf coast to be refined and then shipping the refined products back to the Midwest that refinery capacity be created on the Great Lakes.
            This would lower shipping costs and lower possible ecological issues.

          • Anonymous

            Check out recent articles in that conservative daily bible, the Wall Street Journal.  East Coast refineries can’t make money since they don’t have access to sufficient pipline capacity to take advantage of cheaper North Americancrude.  They can’t make money off the more expensive impoirted crude of high enough quality.

          • Anonymous

            So instead of opening new refineries on the Lakes, run the pipeline East.

          • Anonymous

            You hit the nail on the head..

          • Anonymous

            Drilling is up on private land, but way down on public land. Obama has done everything he can to reduce drilling. He said he would while campaigning. Didn’t you listen?

          • Anonymous

            Private land because the oil companies own it and know where to find it (in some cases, have known for years).  Sounds like the ideal of the Rs on avoidance of government interference and privatization.  Once again, your views are too simplistic for a complex situation.

        • Anonymous

          EJ, if you keep fibbing, you ain’t going to heaven.  there is oil in ships that can’t be off loaded, because there’s no place to put it. we don’t have a shortage of oil, gas always goes up this time of year because of change over. I also have to ask why didn’t Bush make gas prices go down, he also said there was not much he could do.

          • Anonymous

            Under President Bush, gas peaked at $4.12 a gallon. Bush took actions that lead to the price dropping to $1.84 by the time he left office. Obama reversed the actions Bush took, and that’s a contributing factor for the prices we’re paying today.

            Also, under Bush, when the gas prices topped 4 bucks, the price of a barrel of oil was nearly $150.00. Under Obama, the gas prices are at about 4 bucks, and the cost of a barrel of oil is $105.00. In other words, a barrel of oil is $45.00 less and the price is 4 bucks a gallon. 

            Why? Simple. Since President Obama took office, the printing presses have been running day and night injecting dollars into the economy. Nearly 2 trillion has been printed and distributed, and that has caused the value of the American dollar to fall by nearly 30% on the global market. On top of that, wages are stagnant in the private sector, unemployment is up, government spending is out of control, and there is an anti-oil attitude in the White House. 

            By the way, I Googled for oil tankers unloading, and found unconfirmed comments from 2009. 

          • Anonymous

            “Bush took actions that lead [sic] to the price dropping to $1.84 by the time he left office.”

            Such as… ? (And provide sources.)

          • Anonymous

            Also, especially on the East Coast, refining capacity is on the decrease becasue they don’t have ready access to domestic and other North American crude.

        • Anonymous
          • Anonymous

            The fact I was addressing was that the President can influence the price of oil and gas. 

          • Anonymous

            Very little, not enough to matter.

        • Anonymous

          Your second paragraph is one of the largest problems in this country. Here in the state of Maine we have 2 different blends alone. Reformulated and non-reformulated. The non is refined in Nova Scotia at the Esso refinery and the reformuated is refined in Saint John at the Irving refinery. #2 fuel and diesel used to be one and the same, now we have low sulfur diesel and regular #2. If we are woried about the environment, why not make it all low sulfur?

          • Anonymous

            The formulation requirements are mainly due to environmental requirements which vary from area to area.  Yeah, we should all have low sulfur diesel but it’s morfe expensive becasue of the more extensive refining (hydroprocessing and hydrogen ain’t cheap). 

          • Anonymous

            Environmental requirements introduced by over-reaching governments, both state and federal. Most of them are unnecessary.

      • Anonymous

        Read many of Bonny’s posts and you will see they don’t tend to be logical.

      • Anonymous

        But a leader of a mideast country can just rattle his sword and prices skyrocket.  

        • Anonymous

          That’s because the leaders of mideast countries have no fear of or respect for American. Something to do with the weak leadership now in power.

          • Anonymous

            Nope.  See my other posts.  Aren’t you one of those declaring the President to be a dictator?

        • Anonymous

          Despots can do that (also include Chavez).

  • Anonymous

    Why is anyone surprised?  This is exactly what Obama said he would do to gas prices.  Didn’t you believe him?  Once he gets gas up around $6 a gallon he’ll be able to sell you the Volt for $40,000.  Of course the Volt still won’t be viable in Maine because we’ll be forced to pay for the most expensive power commercially available — WIND.   Thanks to John Baldacci and Angus King.

  • Anonymous

    To follow on what “Arrowhd” posted.

    According to the following link,  speculation may add as much as 40% to a gallon of gas. http://articles.economictimes.indiatimes.com/2012-04-11/news/31325065_1_oil-futures-oil-prices-speculators

    According to this link to Congressional testimony, speculators trade about a billion barrels of oil a day “on paper”, but the world only produces about 85 million barrels of oil.  What does all that trading do, except to drive up the price?
    http://www.cftc.gov/ucm/groups/public/@newsroom/documents/file/hearing080509_masters.pdf

    And, according to this link, the U.S. exported more gasoline than it imported. It seems to me if this gasoline were kept here, it would help to drive down prices.
    http://content.usatoday.com/communities/ondeadline/post/2012/02/us-exported-more-gasoline-than-imported-last-year/1#.T4g2ANk-3VY

    I’ve read (but can’t find links) that the demand for gasoline is down in the U.S.  Also that oil wells that could be producing are capped.

    Apologies for the length.

    • Anonymous

      http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/04/02/oil-demand-eia-idUSL2E8F2BWA20120402 – Reuters says gasloline demand in January 2012 was lowest since January 2001.

      Apologies for the firmness.

      • Anonymous

         If  “firmness” means good info, there’s certainly no apology needed.

        • Anonymous

          “The true measure of life is not length, but honesty.” – John Lyly, Author
          of “Endymion”

    • Anonymous

      Gasoline demand data is available, from the American Petroeum Inst.  The reason for more gasoline exports is that there’ more profit in that than in the US market.

  • Anonymous

    Well, crap, I didn’t realize we had a choice whether or not to pay our Bangor property tax – where was my head (don’t answer that)?  I can hold out for seven years and I can get yet another chance?  Why are we in such a hurry to get those down to treasury?  Now I understand why no one registers their car within 6 months of their registration running out – you can have numerous chances over the next decade to do so! It’s not like there seems to be any penalty for it.   Light came on, folks.  Good info to know…

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