I’m not usually one to gripe (ok, maybe I am!) but look at these headlines:
- Exxon/Mobil Shatters U.S. Record with $45.2 Billion Annual Profit
- U.S. Economy in Tailspin
When these two items can appear concurrently on the same page and no one notices or screams, our nation is in trouble.
I have several questions. How can Exxon/Mobil be posting record profits with the price of gasoline at almost a third of what it was last year? After oil took an unprecedented tumble over the last nine months or so.
According to one report, the U.S. economy shrank by as much as 5.4% from October to December – prompting economist Richard Yamarone to proclaim, “It’s a bloodbath.” And yet Exxon/Mobil makes a $42 billion profit?
This is not unprecedented, of course.
During both the Panic of 1873 and the Great Depression, the robber barons and railroad tycoons continued to make record profits while the poor lived in shanty towns and stood in soup lines. And it will happen again.
We have a President who is pledging to fix the economy, and yet his solution is not to pursue those making record profits and see if there isn’t a way to encourage them to establish new jobs but to fleece the middle class.
I guess we can truly say with Hegel that “no one learns anything from history.”