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Author Topic: Iraq Gas Costs 5¢ Gallon Thanks To US Taxpayers  (Read 1805 times)
BigRog
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« on: July 03, 2005, 10:16:22 PM »

Iraq Gas Costs 5¢ Gallon
Thanks To US Taxpayers
6-6-4

BAGHDAD, Iraq (AP) - While Americans are shelling out record prices for fuel, Iraqis pay only about 5 cents a gallon for gasoline a benefit of hundreds of millions of dollars subsidies bankrolled by American taxpayers.
 
Before the war, forecasters predicted that by invading Iraq and ousting Saddam Hussein, America would benefit from increased exports of oil from Iraq, which has the world's second largest petroleum reserves.
 
That would mean CHEAP GAS FOR AMERICAN MOTORISTS and a boost for the oil-dependent American economy. More than a year after the invasion, that logic has been flipped on its head. Now the average price for gasoline in the United States is running $2.05 a gallon 50 cents more than the pre-invasion price. Instead, THE ONLY PEOPLE GETTING CHEAP GAS as a result of the invasion ARE THE IRAQIS.
 
Filling a 22-gallon tank in Baghdad with low-grade fuel costs just $1.10, plus a 50-cent tip for the attendant. A tankful of high-test costs $2.75.
 
In Britain, by contrast, gasoline prices hit $5.79 per gallon last week $127 for a tankful.
 
Although Iraq is a major petroleum producer, the country has little capacity to refine its own gasoline. So the U.S. government pays about $1.50 a gallon to buy fuel in neighboring countries and deliver it to Iraqi stations. A three-month supply costs American taxpayers more than $500 million, not including the cost of military escorts to fend off attacks by Iraqi insurgents. The arrangement keeps a fleet of 4,200 tank trucks constantly on the move, ferrying fuel to Iraq.
 
"We thank the Americans," Baghdad taxi driver Osama Hashim said. "They risked their lives to liberate us and now they are improving our lives," said Hashim, 26, topping up the tank on his beat-up 1983 Volkswagen.
 
Iraq's fuel subsidies, which are intended to mollify drivers used to low-priced fuel under Saddam, have coupled with the opening of the borders to create an anarchic car culture in Baghdad. Cheap used cars shipped from Europe and Asia are flooding into Iraq. A 10-year-old BMW in good condition costs just $5,000. Since gas is so cheap, anyone with a car can become a taxi driver. Drivers jam the streets, offering rides for as little as 250 dinars about 17 cents.
 
Analysts say the U.S. gas subsidies can't last forever and Iraqis may be in for an unpleasant shock when they end. In the meantime, however, THE AMERICAN TAXPAYER CONTINUES TO FOOT A HUGE BILL.
 
"The U.S. taxpayer has a right to be indignant, and Iraqis have to be warned about the long-run damages of this," said Anthony Cordesman, an Iraq analyst with the Washington-based Center for Strategic and International Studies. "The minute the aid goes out, the party is over. And there's going to be A HELL OF A HANGOVER."
 
The U.S. government paid even more last year for Iraqis' gasoline between $1.59 and $1.70 a gallon when the imports were contracted to Halliburton, the Texas oil services giant formerly headed by Vice President Dick Cheney. The cheap fuel is spurring unsustainable demand, promoting wasteful use of energy and transportation, and squandering Iraq's oil output that might otherwise be exported, Cordesman said.
 
"You're leading people to buy cars that aren't affordable at normal costs," he said. "You need to move toward real market prices as quickly as you can without causing instability."
 
Iraqi drivers protest that the price difference between a gallon of gas in the United States and Iraq is fair, because the average Iraqi earns around $1,000 a year, a thirtieth of the average U.S. wage.
 
"If the price of gas goes up, we'll see lots of anger in the street," said cab driver Hashim, at a grimy filling station on Saadoun Street in central Baghdad.
 
© Copyright 2004 Associated Press
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"Lurch my good man,…what did you mean when you said just now that 'You've got better things to do than run my petty little errands'…….?"
Miss Chick-a-BEE
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« Reply #1 on: July 04, 2005, 09:51:29 AM »

You know though that if we HAD gotten a decrease in price for our gas, liberals would be saying "see, the war WAS about stealing the oil in Iraq". I don't think OUR current price in oil has anything to do with the war. Not that that article implied anything like that. But our price here is going to always go up, not down.

I don't understand anything about how we pay for the Iraqi's gas, or where our tax money goes. I wish I did. I know there are many things I DON'T want my tax money going to, but it does anyway (such as to help with abortions). But I know I'd much rather see my tax money going to help the people in Iraq, in any way it can, than to have it go to half the programs it gets spent on here in America. So I'm ok with it. I don't want it 100%, but it's still a better choice for tax money than other programs.

I don't understand the parts of politics that involve our tax money going to other countries to help them. I almost want ALL of it to help our country (really help it!), and then I wish also more people would donate to aid groups above their taxes. I don't know what the full answer is. But I guess I am ok with many of the choices our government makes - like help starving nations, help with AIDS education, or programs that teach countries about advanced technology or farming practices. I don't think I'd be too happy with a government that thought - "you're on your own, our tax money will not leave our nation". Being rich never means you should hord it all. It means you spread the money to uplift those less fortunate - whether on an individual basis, or on a national level. We are a very rich and blessed country. I personally don't make much money (under $12,000 a year), but I can still afford gas. What's really killing me on price is cigarettes (yes, this little church girl smokes, surprize surprize). We spend over $200 a month on cigarettes, but only about $65 or less a month on gas.

Beth

Beth
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bassman1977
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« Reply #2 on: August 02, 2005, 07:02:47 PM »

My understanding is that when our money goes to other countries to "help" them, that country eventually has to pay us back (although not always true).  Keep in mind also that other countries that we have helped in the past pay us for services they provide as well, which in turn helps pay back what they owe us.  I guess that's besides the point.  As far as the gas prices go, I would have to agree that the war is not the sole reason for prices increasing.  I would say that it is used more as an excuse by the oil companies (to a point).  People like to say that if the oil production was increased, the prices would drop.  Yeah, sure, that's the supply part for you.  Or is it?  Gotta remember that oil needs to be refined to produce gasoline.  And what isn't their enough of?  Gas refineries.  OPEC is producing enough oil, but the gas refineries are at max capacity.  So what can the oil companies do but either A) build more refineries and hit John Q Public in the pocket for the cost of said refinery, or B) leave it the way it is and hit John Q Public in the pocket because of the Demand.  There are a couple things that the article fails to mention that are obvious but should be mentioned as a reminder.  1) The oil is produced in their back yards, in turn, they don't pay import fees & cost of shipping it to where they are.  2) There isn't a whole lot of iraqis driving around like we do (we, as in the U.S.).  There's a war going on over there, where the roads are littered with IEDs.  Would you want to drive those roads?  I did and it sucked. Now you have a low demand because of that driving supply even further up.  Costs come down again.  3) Iraqis are broke!  I know some of you might be able to remember when it cost a nickle to buy a candy bar.  Think how long ago that was.  That's where these people are now (if not in a hell of a lot worse shape than the U.S. was in).  I'm sure their are other variables that drive their costs down, but I'm no economist.  I'm just give what I believe to be the facts and hopefully show how the media doesn't tell you the whole reason for why things are the way they are.  Heck, we've seen it numerous times with news stories about bees!  I hope this wasn't taken that I agree or disagree with any of the posts on here to date.  There's not a whole lot I can do that will "fix" the situation, so I just piss and moan about it like everyone else.   Tongue So, that's that.  I seem to remember someone saying that gas cost about 1.5 cents a few months ago, when I was over there.  That's a couple hundred percent inflation for ya.   wink
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ScottT
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Location: Clayton, Michigan


« Reply #3 on: October 07, 2005, 11:53:46 PM »

About your smoking problems. Of course you should quit but I'm not going to suggest that because I like people that mind there own darn business.
There is a solution to your problem though.
Roll your own cigarettes.
 I buy Tobbacco in a 2 pound bag for about 16 bucks. Then I buy 3 boxes of tubes at Approx $2 a piece. total $22.00 for 3 cartons.
The reason for the high cost of tobbacco are taxes. Cigarettes are a Tax Class J. Buying tubes and tobbaco are standard sales tax ~6% because they aren't cigarettes.
I use a premier machine. Slide the tube on the horn, drop tobbaco in the slot and turn the crank. Takes about 5 minutes to make a pack @ ~$6.00 a carton.

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I have no bees. But theres always tomorrow.
manowar422
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« Reply #4 on: October 08, 2005, 10:10:01 AM »

We Americans are a spoiled lot. Back in the 70's we waited in line
on alternate days to fill our tanks due to the oil companies lack of refining capabilities.
Then they made cars with better mileage which led to a
decrease in demand for refined fuel. Now a great number of the mini-vans
and SUVs we drive use fuel at an ever increasing rate and demand has
doubled in the last 14 years.

Remember a thing called the Windfall Profits Tax? Reagan's administration
collected billions from Big Business in the 80's, when that money could
have gone into building refineries or reserching alternative fuels. Instead,
the government wasted it on things like "StarWars" huh

We don't need more oil in 55gal. drums, we need a bumper crop
of refined gasoline.
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #5 on: October 08, 2005, 11:18:33 AM »

>Remember a thing called the Windfall Profits Tax? Reagan's administration
collected billions from Big Business in the 80's, when that money could
have gone into building refineries or reserching alternative fuels.

As I remember it,the democrats passed that law and the price of gas went up MORE the next day, by pretty much the amount the oil companies had to pay...  They had to stop the evil companies from making too much money from us and raise our taxes (opps, I mean THEIR taxes) to compensate.  Of course I paid those taxes in higher prices.

It is an old policitcal ploy to pretend they aren't taxing us when they really are.  Raise the taxes on someone esle who raises the prices on us and pretend that we (the people) didn't have to pay that tax.
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Michael Bush
My website:  bushfarms.com/bees.htm
My book:  ThePracticalBeekeeper.com
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"Everything works if you let it."--Rick Nielsen
manowar422
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« Reply #6 on: October 08, 2005, 11:59:23 AM »

We always get "sheared" in the end. All together now, say "Bahhhhhh" angry
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