One weird quirk about living in Oklahoma is that we're not supposed to complain too much about high gas prices because, according to economic theory, they're allegedly a good thing for our petro-dependant economy, and help greasily line the pockets of our all-mighty Oil Overlords and their wealthy benefactors.
Knowing that, I guess we shouldn't be too surprised that as oil and gas prices climb throughout the world following the crisis in Ukraine, our Oil Overlords seem pretty happy, content and eager to do absolutely nothing about it.
In fact, they're even ignoring calls from Governor Stitt to boost oil production! Via The Oklahoman:
As oil prices have climbed to 10-year highs, some Republican politicians in Oklahoma have been volunteering more production to ease pain at the pump.
“Energy-producing states like Oklahoma are ready to step up domestic production in an environmentally responsible way,” Gov. Kevin Stitt said in a letter to President Joe Biden last week after Russia's invasion of Ukraine sent oil prices even higher...
Stitt’s office, however, doesn’t have any barrels to offer. Though the governor described Oklahoma as an energy-producing state, Oklahoma is in reality a state with several energy-producing companies.
And those companies have insisted that they will stick to long-range plans focused more on returning money to shareholders than growing production.
We love to complain about our greedy Oil Overlords here at The Lost Ogle, but I can't blame them too much in this situation. Why should they increase production when it's more advantageous to help limit supply and make more money for their investors and shareholders? That's Capitalism 101!
That being said, it is a bit weird to see an article that highlights this rational greed being printed in the pages of the state newspaper.
Back when The Oklahoman was owned by the Gaylords or Philip Anschutz, it would have simply stuck with the standard right-wing lines of blaming Joe Biden, Nancy Pelosi and other liberal boogiemen, and conveniently ignored the role oil companies play in supply, demand, and pricing. Now they're taking an actual fair-enough look at this complicated global geopolitical issue. In fact, it's so fair that it makes you wonder just how long it's going to be before Harold Hamm buys The Oklahoman and deletes the article.
Anyway, until that happens, you can read the whole article here. I guess it will be interesting to see if Oklahoma oil companies follow the cries of their Governor and increase production to address global supply. It will also be interesting to see how The Oklahoman covers the response of oil companies when oil prices collapse again in a few years. Will they provide another fair piece, or simply follow the right-wing talking points and blaming Joe Biden? I guess we'll wait and see.