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Old 02-13-2013, 07:55 PM
 
Location: Hong Kong
1,329 posts, read 872,018 times
Reputation: 217

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Cash drains hitting the USA... Car-dependency, etc.

The idea for a thread like this originated on another thread.

My premiss is that many Americans just do not "get" it. They see their country losing wealth, but have not taken the time and effort to understand why it is happening. I want to discuss the REAL CAUSES of loss of American wealth on this thread.

Please join in, whether you agree, or disagree.

Here are the posts which inspired this:

Quote:
Originally Posted by GarlicPickles View Post
Please take this in the least offensive way possible... noone cares about your city. This is a thread about York County South Carolina.

I love the suburbs. I love my car. I don't feel "dependent" on it. If I didn't have a car I would feel dependent on public transportation because where I could go would depend upon where the public transportation goes and when I could go would depend on when the public transportation goes there. In my car I can go wherever I feel like, whenever I feel like it. It is comfortable and clean and I never have to sit next to a foul smelling person when I sit in it.

Different people prefer different surroundings. If you like living among the densest human habitation in the planet, good for you. I would hate it. The only reason you can live in that environment is because other people choose to live in rural areas where they have the space to grow, raise or catch your food. Where I live is dependent on urban areas for jobs, commerce etc... Don't try to convince me that I need to live like a sardine and i won't try to convince you that you need a picket fence, a dog and two kids okay?
You can love all that... completely fine.

But, please at least TRY to address these questions:

1. Are you concerned about the vulnerability that car-dependent people, and a car-dependent country have to rising oil prices?

2. Have you thought deeply about why America is getting poorer, and why some other countries, which are also oil importers (but much less per capita) are getting richer? And I mean getting behind the headlines, and superficial nonsense you read in the mainstream media, and trying to really understand what is happening.

(#2 might be a very interesting topic for discussion, if people want to take the thread that way.)

 
Old 02-13-2013, 08:03 PM
 
12,287 posts, read 15,181,947 times
Reputation: 8100
What gets me is the price of most energy is stable or declining, but oil stays high. Although electricity and heat can be generated from any fuel, petroleum has a monopoly on motor fuel. That is why oil producers have us over a barrel.
Of course, High Speed Electrified Rail avoids that issue in Europe, but American politicians have informed us that it is an invention of the devil and they are to be praised for saving us from it.
 
Old 02-13-2013, 08:10 PM
 
Location: Hong Kong
1,329 posts, read 872,018 times
Reputation: 217
Quote:
Originally Posted by pvande55 View Post
What gets me is the price of most energy is stable or declining, but oil stays high.
To me, the reason for High Oil Prices is obvious.
Gasoline demand is slowing in the US, but oil is a global market, and many new drivers are coming on the roads in places like China and India. So as gasoline demand falls in the US, it is rising faster outside the US, and so the overall demand is up.

The market for natural gas is much more local, because it is more expensive to transport.



The US is the most oil dependent country in the world, and its imports of oil remain uncomfortably high. But growth is happening in other countries, most notably the BRIC countries. The US will just have to make way for those countries, whether it wants to or not. The rising economic power of the BRICS may force Dollar oil prices up, as the US dollar falls, putting a big squeeze on those who live in car dependent areas.

What is going to change this trend? To me, it looks inevitable
 
Old 02-13-2013, 08:35 PM
 
9,520 posts, read 14,812,547 times
Reputation: 9769
Quote:
Originally Posted by Geologic View Post
What is going to change this trend? To me, it looks inevitable
Your chart is out of date. Oil production in the US has been moving up since 2009.
 
Old 02-13-2013, 09:32 PM
 
Location: Hong Kong
1,329 posts, read 872,018 times
Reputation: 217
True enough

There's been an approx. 1 - 1.2 million bpd rise in US production - thanks to fracking and so forth. But the US is far from energy independent, whatever the spin in the mainstream media may be.



Within the context of the big picture, that brief gain is not a big deal. The problem of huge oil imports has not disappeared.

The increase in US oil production has allowed US oil imports to fall from over 10 million bpd to about 9 million bpd

Sources of U.S. Petroleum Imports, 1973-2011

/source: http://www1.eere.energy.gov/vehicles...2_fotw734.html

Perhaps you will agree that 9mn bpd x $100 = $900 Million per day ...

That's a great deal of American wealth being drained overseas everyday - A Big Cash drain.

This illustrates that: the Car-dependent are hurting their countrymen by allowing wealth to drain abroad, weakening the US dollar, and thereby hurting everyone else, whether those others drive or not.

Last edited by Geologic; 02-13-2013 at 09:40 PM..
 
Old 02-13-2013, 09:54 PM
 
9,520 posts, read 14,812,547 times
Reputation: 9769
Quote:
Originally Posted by Geologic View Post
This illustrates that: the Car-dependent are hurting their countrymen by allowing wealth to drain abroad, weakening the US dollar, and thereby hurting everyone else, whether those others drive or not.
Where's that eyeroll smiley when you need it?
 
Old 02-13-2013, 10:37 PM
 
Location: Vallejo
14,056 posts, read 16,063,174 times
Reputation: 12630
Quote:
Originally Posted by Geologic View Post
Cash drains hitting the USA... Car-dependency, etc.

The idea for a thread like this originated on another thread.

My premiss is that many Americans just do not "get" it. They see their country losing wealth, but have not taken the time and effort to understand why it is happening. I want to discuss the REAL CAUSES of loss of American wealth on this thread.

Please join in, whether you agree, or disagree.

Here are the posts which inspired this:



You can love all that... completely fine.

But, please at least TRY to address these questions:

1. Are you concerned about the vulnerability that car-dependent people, and a car-dependent country have to rising oil prices?

2. Have you thought deeply about why America is getting poorer, and why some other countries, which are also oil importers (but much less per capita) are getting richer? And I mean getting behind the headlines, and superficial nonsense you read in the mainstream media, and trying to really understand what is happening.

(#2 might be a very interesting topic for discussion, if people want to take the thread that way.)
I agree with Garlic.

1) No.
2) Such as? Canada (which consumes more oil per capita than we do) is doing fine as well. Germany is doing well, but Italy and Portugal who consume less are certainly not. Spain isn't doing so hot.
 
Old 02-13-2013, 10:38 PM
 
Location: southern california
55,634 posts, read 74,577,828 times
Reputation: 48121
cars are very expensive. and almost impossible to function without.
this is only intelligible to the 46% of americans that work, to the rest its utter nonsense.
 
Old 02-13-2013, 10:54 PM
 
134 posts, read 162,096 times
Reputation: 126
I disagree with the seeming assertion that oil imports are the reason we're doing poorly economically. $900 million a day is fair-sized, but really, our economic situation is very much less due to a trade deficit than under-performing domestic consumer demand and a host of other domestic factors.
I do, however, agree that a transition to more urban, less car-dependant places, better investment in our infrastructure, and a reduction in our consumption of oil would be positive for the economy.
Canada uses more oil per capita than us because as a nation, they have an even lower overall population density and need to move people more. Their better economic performance is due to their having a better handle on their healthcare costs than we do, but otherwise they're quite similar.
Garlic's point about not wanting to be subject to the inconsistencies of public transportation systems is absolutely valid. There are two obstacles to investment in comprehensive transit investment: political will and obsession with short-term finance. We're terrified of making a decidedly unsexy investment that might look like debt in the future, even if it will reap the dividends of a better-integrated economy, a better-off populace, and a more attractive metro for the word on everyone's lips these days: jobs.
 
Old 02-13-2013, 11:35 PM
 
195 posts, read 235,274 times
Reputation: 247
Quote:
Originally Posted by Geologic View Post
Cash drains hitting the USA... Car-dependency, etc.

1. Are you concerned about the vulnerability that car-dependent people, and a car-dependent country have to rising oil prices?
Are oil prices really increasing though? I know they went up a lot in 2008 but since then they have been holding steady between $80-$110 a barrel. And while gas prices have been stagnant, fuel efficiency has been increasing. So no i'm not in the least bit worried. If fuel prices were to go up to say $200 a barrel, manufacturers would just make more efficient, and alternative fuel vehicles. I don't see cars disappearing unless a new better form of transportation comes along.
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