2
Nov
2005

Here we go again

TechCentralStation
by Jack Rafuse

11/02/05

Here we go again. Gasoline prices are dropping as usual with the end of the summer driving season. But oil companies are announcing huge quarterly profits, so the inevitable reaction has begun -- howls on Capitol Hill. Self-proclaimed friends of consumers want the profits refunded to 'ease consumers' pain.' They propose to do that through a 'windfall profits tax,' arguing that the government would make better use of the money than would the oil companies. They point out breathlessly that one company's last quarter earnings were $9 billion, and then multiply it to reach $36 billion for a full year. (As a relative measure, that's about how much US families spend on their pets each year. Comparisons often help when hysteria is setting in.) Twenty-five years ago, with gasoline prices at record highs and company profits 'unconscionable' according to some, like-minded critics won the day in Congress and enacted a windfall profits tax. It was a disaster...

//www.techcentralstation.com/110205E.html


Informant: Thomas L. Knapp
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