When we were younger, we were taught to “play by the rules”. Everyone played by the same rules. It was an essential lesson for every child. My question is, “Why was that such an important lesson since the adults don’t follow it”? Especially the government!
The media is constantly hyping how great the cheap gas prices are for the economy. But is it really? There isn’t much growth from other sectors. People talked about the cheap gas when the prices fell but soon become accustomed to it and don’t even notice. On the other side of the issue is the oil and gas industry. The “Evil” oil companies and there minions. Cut backs, lay offs and shut downs. National unemployment statistics are being impacted by the lay offs. The energy industries is the third large sector of the US economy. They provide jobs, taxes dollars and support communities around the world. And energy is hurting.
Now is this was a simple matter of supply and demand I would understand. The economy, LEFT ALONE regulates itself quite well. The problem is the US Government can’t leave anything alone. While the Arab nations and the fields in Siberia are not only supported by their governments, they are subsidized. Other countries realize the importance of energy and support it. Not true in the United States. While politicians stand up and proclaim we must be energy independent they vote for regulation after regulation. They support a multitude of government agencies that regulate and fine US industries. Energy is one of the most rigidly regulated industries in America, and that’s saying something. Domestic energy companies not only need to sell their product to cover production, refining and delivery costs, but have to cover the cost of mountains of red tape. Their competition across the globe does not. They are not playing by the same rules. While the U.S. agrees to ever decreasing emission standards we agree that India and China, two of the biggest polluters should be allowed to increase emission standards. We agreed they could get worse if they would limit how much worse. That’s fair how? The petroleum industry is currently in trouble and the administration is now going after power plants and the coal industry.
No one considers the trickle down effect of all of this. Ebsco is a spring company. We are in no way directly related to energy. Yet we are feeling the impact of the petroleum industries slow down. Our springs go in valves that go into pipes that carry oil in the field and in the refineries. They go in equipment that maintains the pipe lines and in sensors on the off shore wells. When the energy industry stops producing, they stop buying new valves and equipment and that impacts Ebsco Spring. Think of all of the other companies they impact. The small town with the refinery finds half the work force laid off. Think of the restaurants, stores, dry cleaners and on and on and on that are impacted. The small companies supplying nuts and bolts for the valves. When you hurt the third largest industry in the U.S. it has a domino effect across the whole economy. We have cancelled several services at Ebsco during this slow down which is impacting their business.
So what should we do about it. I’m not advocating there be no regulations. I am asking that government step back and look at the impact of all of their regulations and attempt something new. Being Reasonable. With REASONABLE laws and regulations, U.S. industry can compete with anyone in the world. American industry built modern-day society and will take us to the next level, IF the government can leave them alone.
I currently spend several hours filling out forms and submitting them to customers stating that the materials we use do not have minerals from a certain region in the world that is acting badly. It is call the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumers Protection Act. Seriously? What does that have with gold from the Congo? Large companies have been forced to add full-time staff just to complete these reports. And the result is a few politicians can feel good about themselves because the “did something”.
Donald Trump recently announced his candidacy for the President. I am not here to solicit your support for him, BUT I sure would like to see his first address to the joint legislature as he looked out, pointed at them and said “YOU’RE FIRED”. If any of my staff produce so little and what they did produce made my job more difficult I would fire them, so why shouldn’t the President. If any of them were worth a damn at running a business they wouldn’t be serving in congress anyway so why do they think they know so much more that the rest of us.