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Author: Goofyhoofy Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Top Recommended Fools Feste Award Nominee! Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 1976344  
Subject: Re: The Spin Zone Date: 12/19/2001 10:32 AM
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The sad truth is, we need to keep the Saudis happy because we need their frickin' oil.

Actually that's not true. Saudia Arabia accounts for only around 6% of all oil used in this country. (Please note that this chart is of oil imports only, and remember that we provide about 50% of our oil needs through domestic production, you can therefore slice by half the percentage provided by each "foreign" country.)

http://www.us-israel.org/jsource/US-Israel/oil.html

(It's also interesting to note where "the Middle East" ranks in all of this. Above Saudia Arabia are Venezuela and Canada. Next, below Saudia Arabia (which is #3) are Mexico, Nigeria, and Angola. Then comes Columbia and the United Kingdom. Except for Saudia Arabia, there isn't even another "Middle Eastern" country of any real significance!

Consistently, Japanese companies like Honda and Toyota have proven the economic viability of greener and more efficient use of energy that the Big Three continues to claim is not in the national interest. As long as this remains the case, I will continue to drive Japanese cars.

It's worth noting that the reason we are so dependent on "Middle Eastern oil" isn't because "we are dependent on Middle Eastern Oil" (in toto it accounts for less than 10% of our petroleum use), but because Japan and Europe are so dependent on those imports. As I recall, Japan gets something like 60% of its oil from the Middle East, and Europe gets something like 30%.

If there were a "shutoff" of Middle Eastern oil we could weather it just fine, except that Japan and Europe would bid the price of oil up because they are so totally reliant on such imports. And since there is really only a "world price" for oil, that would have the effect of raising "our" oil prices - even though we wouldn't really "need their oil." However you can be sure Venezuela, Canada, et. al. would be selling to the highest bidder - which wouldn't be us unless we paid the price.

So "driving a Japanese car" may make you feel good, but I'm here to tell you that if their society just completely cratered and they started living in caves and huts like the Afghans do - and cut their use of oil down to that level, why, we'd be a lot better off, at least from a strictly "oil" point of view. <g> In fact, I could make the case that by buying Japanese cars, you're supporting their industry which does create demand for Middle Eastern oil, thereby actually increasing our peril, ho ho ho.
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