The headline on page 1 of the NY Times today blares out “At Exxon Mobil A Record Profit But no Fanfare”. Why should you not be surprised at the “Record Profit”? It’s the American way.
But in this case Exxon Mobil is not tooting it’s horn saying look at how successful we are – they are running ads in major newspapers trying to downplay their success. Because even they know their profit is excessive and obscene.
What is their success? Only that they set a record in accumulating $36 billion dollars in profits in 2005. And this isn’t the first time. They set a previous high in corporate profits last year of $25.53 billion dollars. In 2003 they made $20.93 billion dollars but this was only 5th in all time corporate profits for a year. Still they now own the record for making the most money in 3 out of the last 5 years.
Exxon Mobil said their overall profit rose over 40% last year. As Americans paid more for heating oil and gas how many do you think saw a 40% rise in their income? How many do you think instead saw an over 40% rise in the cost to heat their houses and drive their cars to work?
Is Exxon Mobil alone? Hardly? Last Thursday the NY Times carried a small article on page C6. Its headline was Profit Grows 51% for Conoco Philips.
On Jan 27, 2006 the Chevron atticle read “Rising Oil Prices Lift Chevron Profit to Quarterly Record.” Chevron reported record profits of $14.1 billion for 2005. The combined total of Chevron for 2004 and 2005 was a record $27.4 billion profit.
Isn’t it time someone questioned our priorities? Isn’t there something morally wrong when the average citizen struggles to make end meet in the face of rising oil and gas prices and the oil companies meanwhile are seeing record profits? Where is our government? Oh yeh they’re busy fighting a ‘war” in Iraq to make certain we can get more oil so prices don’t get out of control.
Remember this is the same Republican government of Bush that sat on the sidelines while Enron manipulated the makets to gouge electric consumers. It’s the free market system. It’s free enterprise they say. Right. That’s why Congress last November inserted more than $2 billion in additional tax breaks for oil and gas companies in the enegry legislation they passed.
Meanwhile we see cuts in college loans and heath care for the poor. Its a reverse Robin Hood mentality. Take from the poor and give to the rich. Congress should repeal the $2 billion giveway and impose an excess profits tax on the oil companies. Time for some compassion.