Q Thank you, sir. You mentioned gas prices; would you go along with an effort by some Senate Republicans that could levy a significant tax on oil companies' profits? And does it bother you that the oil companies are racking up these record profits when people are paying $3 a gallon?
THE PRESIDENT: My attitude is that the oil companies need to be mindful that the American people expect them to reinvest their cash flows in such a way that it enhances our energy security. That means pipeline construction for natural gas deliveries. That means expansion of refineries. That means exploration in environmentally-friendly ways. It also means investment in renewable sources of energy. And that's what the American people expect. They also expect to be treated fairly at the pump, and that's why the Federal Trade Commission is going to monitor the situation very carefully to make sure the American people are treated fairly.
Q So "no" to a tax on profits?
THE PRESIDENT: Look, the temptation in Washington is to tax everything, and they spend the money -- "they" being the people in Washington. The answer is, is for there to be strong reinvestment to make this country more secure from an energy perspective.
Listen, these oil prices are a wake-up call. We're dependent on oil and we need to get off oil. And the best way to do so is through technology. And I've been traveling the country talking about the need to develop alternative sources of energy, such as ethanol, and to spend money to advance technologies such as new battery technology that will enable us to have plug-in hybrid vehicles. We signed a good energy bill a while ago, and that encouraged, for example, one thing it's got in there is a tax credit to encourage people to purchase hybrid vehicles so that the consumptive patterns of the American people change.
And the American people have got to understand that we're living in a global economy, and so when China and India demand more oil, it affects the price of gasoline at the pump. And, therefore, it's important for us to diversify away from oil.
But it's also important for the people to understand that one of the reasons why the price is gasoline is up is there's tight gasoline supplies. And one reason there's tight gasoline supplies is because we haven't built any new refineries since the 1970s. And, therefore, Congress needs to provide regulatory relief so people can expand their refineries.
So it's a combination of people investing the cash flows, as well as regulatory relief to enhance the ability for people to achieve the objective, which is more gasoline on the market, which will help our consumers.
Friday, April 28, 2006
Instead of Blowing Your Proffits on a Lamborghini, Be Mindful and Ot her Helpful Suggestions From W
Take a look at how hard the W is hitting Big Oil: