According to Mark Graves, a reporter with the Oregonian newspaper, itself a master of propaganda on behalf of the super rich in their war against the middle class, oil prices have been undergoing a normal, mild seasonal price rise lately, and this accounts for the rise in oil prices of about 30 percent over the last three weeks. In the February 25 edition of the Oregonian newspaper he wrote, “Refineries are in the midst of conducting seasonal maintenance, a process that can limit fuel production and put upward pressure on pump prices.”
However, another source suggests a different scenario for why gas prices are rising. Bloomberg News actually did some investigation and discovered that, “U.S. drillers are idling rigs at a record pace, gutting investment plans and laying off thousands of workers…. The number of rigs drilling for oil in the U.S. dropped by 37 last week to 1,019, the fewest since July 2011, data from Baker Hughes Inc. showed Feb. 20. Since Dec. 5, a total of 556 have been taken out of service. Oil explorers including Royal Dutch Shell Plc and Chevron Corp. have announced spending cuts of almost $50 billion since Nov. 1.”
In other words, US oil corporations are cutting production to jack up prices, because the Saudi’s and other OPEC nations refuse to do so. This is called a conspiracy in restraint of trade, which is illegal. This action also has nothing to do with seasonal maintenance whatsoever since they’re shutting down oil rigs and cutting production.
When was the last time we saw a 30 percent increase in gasoline prices in February due to “Refineries conducting seasonal maintenance? How about never. Just take a look at the graph below.
The graph shows gasoline prices did slide up in price in February, but none of the years shown from 2008 to 2013 demonstrates an rise of 25 percent in the average price of gasoline from February to March. In 2010 there was virtually no increase in prices.
Therefore, one can see that Bloomberg news report being the more accurate of the two reports. Graves report is either simplistically thought out, or it is a case of pure misleading propaganda. He is factually correct that prices normally rise in late winter and early spring, but this doesn’t entirely account for the bulk of the increase in gasoline prices in the last three weeks.
And this is how the corporate propaganda machines tell you only what they want you to believe, which is often not true at all. Check out the Bloomberg report below the graph.