Friday, March 2, 2012



January $33.07 July $56.16
February $31.04 August $62.80
March $40.13/$39.88 September $60.98
April $42.45/$42.20 October $67.43
May $51.27/$51.02 November $69.43
June $61.71/$61.46 December $66.33
2009 Average $53.56/$53.48


January $84.70 July $126.16
February $86.64 August $108.46
March $96.87 September $96.13
April $104.31 October $68.50
May $117.40 November $49.29
June $126.33 December $32.94
2008 Average $91.48

As recently as 1998 crude oil was $12 a barrel. TOday it's $128 a barrel. What other commodity increased ten times in value in 14 years?

I want to cry foul but there were many years of prosperity in there and many more years to come. I remember the last time oil cost $127 a barrel in Jully 2008 and for the first time in 4 years in Los Angeles I saw busses that were full and people on bicycles and people walking. It was amazing. I moved into my van at that time and delayed my trip to Mexico until the gas prices went down from $4.25 to something like $3.50. Lasting change didn't take place but I think a small step was taken toward change. If we could live forever we could see the changes like when someone took video footage of the memorial bridge in Portsmouth dropping the center span at slack tide. It took hours and hours so if you watch it in real time nothing seems to be happening. But if you speed up the video then the bridge drops the barges move into place and the center span is carried away. I think human history is something like that but for each incremental change a whole family is born and buried so no one person gets to see anything very dramatic happen like Los Angeles going from a city of 60 million cars to a city that has full buses and light rail. There are abandoned light rail tracks that were a curse to my small motorcycle. The tracks were the archaeological evidence of an era when you could take a train from downtown to Venice. Those days are no more but before I left there was some movement toward rebuilding the light rail. Of course the tire companies and car companies were major opponents since they were the ones who monopolized and then dismantled the light rail to begin with, but this time they will lose.

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Man in the Van by Oggy Bleacher is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 Unported License.