Our State representative, Bryan King, wants us to be very, very worried about the Obama Administration's plans to remove tax credits that oil and gas companies receive for doing business overseas. Of all the problems we face right here, right now, in Carroll County, why is Representative King worried about the fortunes of Exxon Mobil and British Petroleum?
Well, what King says is that we'll pay higher prices at the gas pump if these tax beleaguered corporations have to pony up and pay the freight that every other developed country in the world requires them to pay. He also says that removing their tax subsidies will stop them from hiring, or that we may even lose jobs.
But what's really the impact on you and me, here in Carroll County if these corporations continue getting a break? Does King mean that we depend on Exxon Mobil and British Petroleum to pass along their corporate subsidy savings to us in the form of new jobs? Can we expect gas prices to go down?
Exxon Mobil's earnings in the first half of 2010 were $13.9 billion, up 60% over 2009. Since Representative King is positive that doom is certain if energy company taxes go up, what happens if their profits go up as well? How many jobs came to Carroll County as a result of their spectacular 2010 performance? Did gas prices go down in 2010? Or up?
A rudimentary look at the 2010 earnings and profits of oil and gas companies, as reported by 'Business Week', show that 2010 was a great year for these important job makers. How was it for you? Did you get a new, high paying job? Did your unemployed brother or cousin get a spanking new job?
I wonder if Representative King is concerned about one of my problems--let's call it my energy company problem. Entergy Corporation has tacked on an "Ice Storm Recovery Charge" to my monthly electric bill. If you get your electricity from Entergy you're paying it too, although you may not have noticed it.
Yes, Entergy Corporation is passing along its costs for last January's ice storm to its customers--even though its 2010 profits are up by 39%--and will probably be higher when 4th Quarter reports are in. Oddly enough, my Entergy "Recovery" charge is based on my current billable energy use--and not on what I used a year ago when the damage occurred. Isn't that strange? I wonder if Representative King could check this out and get back to us?
Since Entergy is doing so well these days, I wonder if we can expect them to look out for us? Is it possible that Entergy will accept lower profits out of respect for our tough times? Wouldn't that be nice?
Gosh, I had to close my store for 5 days during the ice storm. I wonder if my customers would have been okay with my tacking on an "Ice Storm Recovery Charge". Is it too late for me to do that now? What do you think?
My guess is that Exxon Mobil, British Petroleum, and Entergy Corporation won't worry too much about us. And why should they when elected officials like Bryan King think they can keep on conning us with fairy stories about jobs and lower prices?
If politicians can be dead certain that corporations will collapse if their subsidies end, why can't they tell us what it means for you and me if the subsidies continue?
So, Mr. Politician, if you succeed in scaring us and we go along with you, how many living wage jobs will be created in Carroll County this year? Please reserve one for me. My kids need shoes.