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High gasoline prices are good news for Republicans. Although a U.S. president, as was the case during the high gasoline price period during Bush,
has no control over the price of commodities, the president at the time of the high prices is an easy target for blame placement.
Nowhere is this blame placement seen or heard more often than on the Fox Republican Network.....where the "news" always vindicates Republicans and damns Democrats.
I watched a clip yesterday on Fox RN featuring Juan Williams and Mary Katherine Ham. The topic was oil speculators and whether oil speculators were driving oil prices
up. It seemed like a good time for Mary Katherine Ham to blast the Dodd-Frank bill for being ineffectual in driving down the manipulation by traders of the oil market.
"We've been told time and time again that speculators have a -- have affecting prices. But Dodd-Frank was actually supposed to fix this problem.
They promised us that Dodd-Frank would fix this problem of speculation affecting prices. In fact, it even gave a government board the power to regulate prices.
But it's not working. And why is that? Because oil prices are not affected by speculation. They are affected by supply and demand, volatility in the Middle East, and emerging economies like China."
Ham lied about oil prices being affected by speculation. Of course, oil prices are affected by speculation. Presidents from both parties have recognized that speculation affects oil pricing. So, Ham's
lie should simply be dismissed as rank propaganda. But what about Dodd-Frank, and Ham's criticism that Dodd-Frank was supposed to "fix this problem", "fix this problem of speculation affecting prices?"
Here's Commodity Futures Trading Commissioner Chilton explaining why Dodd-Frank hasn't kept oil speculators in check as of yet....
CHILTON: "But what I think we need to do, and what Congress told us to do, was to put caps on speculation, to limit the speculation to 10 percent of a market.
I mean, who needs to control more than 10 percent of a market? And unfortunately, the Wall Street banks, Eric, have taken us to court, tried to stop us.
Meanwhile, consumers and businesses alike are paying more than they should at the pumps."
In October, 2011, the Futures Commission voted to implement Dodd-Frank's new restrictions on speculative trading in energy futures markets. In December. 2011, the Commission was sued by
....wait for it.....the International Swaps and Derivatives Association and the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association....in order to stop the new rules against cheating from being implemented.
January, 2012, saw an appeals court dismiss the challenges by the industry groups. Then in February, 2012, industry groups filed an appeal in a district court to prevent the new rules against cheating from going into effect.
A federal district judge refused to stop the rules from Dodd-Frank from being implemented but according to McClatchy, may still rule in favor of the cheaters.
That chronological rundown is why speculators are continuing to rip off consumers of gasoline each and every week. It isn't that Dodd-Frank has failed in controlling the rank speculation which goes on in the oil
futures market...it's that the gamblers, the gamers, those who profit from a game rigged for the cheaters will simply not permit the new trading rules to be put in place.
According to Media Matters, unless the district court sides with the cheaters, the speculator rules voted in as law in Dodd-Frank over a year ago will finally go into effect this June.