Allen B. West

Gas drops below $2 a gallon. Will it last? Not if the government can help it.

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Yesterday we reported how OPEC is attempting to undermine American oil and gas development and in turn the federal government is responding by cutting back on permits — instead of pushing to crush OPEC and Russia. One of the things I immediately noticed while in Texas and New Mexico this week was the incredibly low gas prices. Back in January 2009, the average price of gasoline in America was $1.89 and we all know how high it’s gone over the past six years.

However, thanks to the innovation and ingenuity of the indomitable American entrepreneurial spirit — yep, fracking away — we are seeing a precipitous drop in fuel prices across America. And all this is occurring not thanks to but rather in spite of the federal government’s efforts — as reported here. There have been lawsuits. More endangered species have been identified. False narratives and movies and been produced. All in the name of preventing American energy independence and promoting a “green energy” policy based on massive subsidies and crony capitalism — can you say Solyndra?

Energy production on state and private lands continues to thwart federal government efforts to shut it down, as the radical environmental lobby wages war — Keystone XL Pipeline is an example. We are witnessing the Obama administration’s “War on Coal” and recall President Obama’s declaration to bankrupt the coal industry — and yes, force Americans to lose jobs — but the desired result is to expand the policies of the welfare nanny-state.

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Nonetheless, as reported by Bloomberg.com, “$2 gasoline is back in America. An Oncue Express station in Oklahoma City was selling the motor fuel for $1.99 a gallon today, becoming the first one to drop below $2 in the U.S. since July 30, 2010,Patrick DeHaan, a senior petroleum analyst at GasBuddy Organization Inc., said by e-mail from Chicago.”

Of course, Oklahoma is the starting point for the southern leg of the Keystone pipeline and is experiencing an awesome economic growth and energy boon — and that’s a good thing.

“We knew when we saw crude oil prices drop last week that we’d break the $2 threshold pretty soon, but we didn’t know if it would happen in South Carolina, Texas, Missouri or Oklahoma,” said DeHaan, senior petroleum analyst for GasBuddy. “Today’s national average, $2.74, now makes the current price we pay a whopping 51 cents per gallon less than what we paid a year ago.” Gasoline is sliding after OPEC decided last week not to cut production amid a global glut of oil that has already dragged international oil prices down by 37 percent in the past five months. Pump prices have fallen by almost a dollar since reaching this year’s high on April 26.”

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While in Carlsbad, New Mexico this week I had the opportunity to visit the Carlsbad Caverns and learned the story behind the Permian Basin — which million of years ago was a vast sea. And now the resources and riches that lay beneath have become available for American energy independence, which advances our economic and national security.

Now is not the time to pull back but rather press forward. Now is not the time to give any heed to OPEC and its intentions. Now is the time to make America a first class global energy producer, consumer, and exporter in the areas of oil, natural gas, and coal — all the while seeking and developing other energy sources — such as nuclear, hydrogen, and yes, wind and solar — but not with massive subsidies.

Bloomberg reports, “Fifteen percent of the nation’s gas stations are selling fuel below $2.50 a gallon, “and it may not be long before others join OnCue Express in that exclusive club that’s below $2,” said Gregg Laskoski, another senior petroleum analyst with GasBuddy. Retail gasoline averaged $2.746 a gallon in the U.S. yesterday, data compiled by Florida-based motoring club AAA show. Stations will cut prices by another 15 to 20 cents a gallon as they catch up to the plunge in oil, Michael Green, a Washington-based spokesman for AAA, said by e-mail today.”

It’s time we realized that energy security is an integral aspect of the 21st century battlefield, and as part of this nation’s economic source of power, can be leveraged against its enemies. Why not? Others are doing so.

It’s time we stop allowing Islamic terrorists to benefit from the revenues they ultimately receive because of our energy requirements. Let’s get Americans back to work and reignite the work ethic that will surpass all others by way of a dedicated energy production policy.

If President Obama wanted to impress all Americans and not just his progressive socialist base, he’d launch this country’s energy power and open up federal lands to energy exploration. He’d stop the policy of reducing permits and instead increase them to allow safe and productive energy exploration and economic growth.

America does not lead from behind. We lead, period. Heck, ISIS wants to expand its hold of energy-rich areas — why not us? We’re on the verge of something great. Let’s not blow it! I’d like to see 50 percent of the nation’s gas stations selling fuel below $2.50 by Memorial Day. It can be done!

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