Oil & Gas, Coronavirus and the Joker’s Oval

President Obama paved the way for the resurgence and dominance of the American oil and gas industry.  President Trump has continued on that path.

I would have demanded changes in the way subsidies are managed regardless of who was President. Our small oil and gas companies throughout the 15th District deserve some relief. 

In 2020, the outlook in the industry as a whole went from great, to okay to rather miserable in two weeks. 

Oil prices are going to drop because of two reasons:

First, Saudi Arabia and Russia didn’t get a deal done at the OPEC meeting. Maybe, Trump is rubbing off on others. In retaliation, the Saudis are going to lower their oil prices by 10%. That is going to sting American oil and gas.

Second, the coronavirus is forecasted to lower GDP significantly. 


We already are seeing the canceling of many conferences, the cruise industry might as well start hoping for some sequels of the Poseidon Adventure, but more than that, tourism is going to take a big hit if this rolls into the summer. 

If people start fundamentally changing their behaviors, not going out for a night on the town, that’s going to hurt small businesses.

Then, there’s going to be some real hard choices for different parts of the health sector. Staffing across the nation will be a rolling situation, and if it does, as some predict, staffing will become a critical concern.

Businesses that adapt and respond quickly will likely weather this as it goes.

Background on the oil and gas industry:

Our oil and gas companies, under two administrations, have been drilling and ramping up production wherever they could. 

That has placed these companies in a tough position, a financial bind.

Let’s remind the American people about those Trump tax cuts. The oil and gas industry received massive tax cuts. 

That industry also finds all sorts of goodies elsewhere in the tax code. This makes their tax half of what it is for most any other sector of the economy. 

I do have to say, the oil and gas boom has created a lot of American jobs, good paying ones. Just none here. 

We really have needed a tighter focus on these companies and families who deserved to be a priority of federal tax and energy policy toward our 15th District oil and gas sector.

It doesn’t make any sense that these small companies often have to pay more of their income than big oil on regulations, equipment and time when they don’t get any more of a percentage of these subsidies. It’s not right, it doesn’t make sense, we’ve got to change it. #GaitherIL

One of the harsher realities I’ve come to understand is that the larger the corporation, the bigger the business, the easier it is for that company to just pay a fine as opposed to fixing the underlying problem. 

In the oil and gas industry, the problems they are glossing over actually undercut all of our other efforts to cut emissions.

What sets our small oil & gas companies apart is how their wells are pumping right in the middle of farmland. These families are dedicated to protecting that land. That’s why we should give them more of those subsidies in order to get that job done more quickly. #Gaither15IL

I trust these families more than I do big oil and big gas. And, we have to find a better way to address the violations. They won’t deal with it until it hurts the bottomline. 

And, that bottomline has serious issues because of what that industry decided to do. 

In some cases, companies have gone belly up overextending themselves. That problem is about to get a lot worse as the Saudis price war begins to play itself out in the market.

Anyone that has been paying attention knows what’s about to come down the pipeline, as they say. You can smell bailouts coming. Anything to keep more of these failed economic policies going forward.

What is most heartbreaking are the millions of American workers that have their families to think about because their livelihood just might be going on a forced vacation. This vacation is about oil and gas prices, not a quarantine demand because of the coronavirus. #Gaither15IL

And, that’s when I look up and I see some Tweet from the President of the United States from the Oval Office. Well, he’s obviously got a ton to deal with. 

We’ve been pretty lucky as a nation not having some crisis, some major malfunction that fundamentally altered our current path.

I really prayed that President Trump wouldn’t have to deal with anything so vital to get right. Every part of the policy is pivotal. And, here we are. 

I do hope that people heed these pubic health alerts and get to know what’s happening.

The phrases “Fake News’ and ‘science is a hoax’ are less than humorous right about now. And, people wondered why it was so offensive and concerning. 

As I’m writing this, they just declared the coronavirus is an official pandemic. 

When I link the coronavirus up with what President Trump is doing to Social Security disability, and how broken Medicare Part D is, I think we’re going to see some of the initial results of those broken polices. #Gaither15IL

This is the same crap Mike Pence and supermajority Republicans did in Indiana. They gutted essential programs and services because they thought they knew better.

Guess what? Sometimes, no, most times, everyone knows better than you about something. 

I do really hope that the stubbornness, that the unwillingness to believe science and medicine, that these attributes cannot survive only to continue the false belief that you know better. 

I know I don’t know everything. How could anyone?

When I don’t know, I seek out direct experiences. I have to know how it works, how it doesn’t work, and I always have a massive exploration ahead of me that truly never ends.

That’s how a small post about our oil and gas companies getting hit hard right now became a global view. 

These Congressional Republicans have said they’ve known better for my entire life.

I’ve not seen any of their policies focus on our workers. 

I’ve not seen any of their policies make certain these big corporations invest in their brick & mortar, invest in the community infrastructure, invest in their employees, and invest in our schools as well.

As far as the National Democratic Party, I don’t see any results for us either. If they cared, they would show up with resources for a different message than has been the prevailing and failing one my entire life.

Every day I think about what Glenn Poshard would do. He has passion, he has a vigor and an urgency that I share. #Gaither15IL

I’ve been blessed in my life to have met some good and great people. 

We can be doing so much better. And, we should be a hell of a lot more prepared for this.

I’m so glad our #IllinoisNationalGuard is on this. I know people that are in there, and I pray they all make it back. I wonder how this will impact some of our troops heading over to Ukraine this summer. #Gaither15IL

We have to be prepared for threats from some of these rogue countries that are looking to take advantage while President Trump is Tweeting about why this virus plan is perfect, just like his ridiculous call to Ukraine.

Who has ever heard of a perfect call? Someone who says this sounds like a child that has been caught red-handed. And, no, that’s not a reference to Russia collusion. I read the Mueller Report. It’s not good for the President. It certainly doesn’t make him look all that reputable. Did he sign some blood oath with Russia? No.

Here we sit, multiple crises hitting us directly in the nose.

We have to shake this off and get to work on it. 

The Joker’s Oval . . . I think the laughing is about to end. 

So, regardless of what happens in this election. I am going to work my butt off to make sure we do better as a nation and as a region. 

It’s about time we started taking care of this and taking care of us.

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