Exxon Swims in Unprecedented Windfall Profits While Americans Suffer at the Pump

Exxon earnings posted of $19.66 billion in just three months. Good work if you can get it and aren’t bothered by a pesky conscience, patriotism or a care for global democracy.

Yesterday it was Shell making news for huge profits, today it’s Exxon – but Exxon pulled far ahead of Shell and others with third quarter profits “almost twice as big.”

Reuters reported:

Its $19.66 billion third-quarter net profit far exceeded recently raised Wall Street forecasts as sky-rocketing natural gas and high oil prices…

Exxon, which led record gains by the five producers known as oil majors in the prior quarter, pulled far ahead of peers Shell and TotalEnergies with third-quarter profits almost twice as big. Its gains were aided by its highly criticized decision to double down on fossil fuels as European competitors shifted to renewables.

Exxon banked $43 billion in the first nine months of this year, 19% more than in the same period of 2008, when oil prices traded at a record level of $140 per barrel.

Although President Biden called on oil companies to show a little patriotism by putting rising profits into more production in stead of share buybacks, Exxon will continue its “$30 billion share buyback program through 2023 while increasing dividends… and will pay $15 billion to shareholders this year.” .”

About those high gas prices Republicans keep blaming on President Biden — most of you already know, because you actually read — the actual cause behind those high prices is oil and gas companies gouging consumers. And boy oh boy, are they raking it in while Americans hurt.

All oil and gas companies except Samson Energy have donated primarily to Republicans and conservatives and it’s only gotten more extreme with time. (You can look up the Republicans running in your state to see the oil and gas cash flow.)

From Open Secrets:

In Pennsylvania, while Republican Mehmet Oz defends Big Oil on the campaign trail from Democrat John Fetterman’s suggestions that they stop price gouging everyday people, under the hood, it turns out Oz has a lot of personal motivation to screw over Pennsylvanians a lot of affiliation with Big Oil, including getting over $200,000 in contributions to his senate campaign.

These huge profits are said to be due to rising demand and under-supplied market. But there are things that could have mitigated the pain.

President Biden empathized with American families saying on October 19th, “(W)hen the price of gas goes up, other expenses get cut. That’s why I have been doing everything in my power to reduce gas prices since Putin’s invasion of Ukraine caused these price hikes — these prices to spike and rattled international oil markets.”

And then he did something about it: “Today I’m announcing three critical steps that my administration will take to reduce gas prices at the pump. First, the Department of Energy will release another 15 million barrels from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, extending our previously announced release through the month of December…Secondly, we need to responsibly increase American oil production without delaying or deferring our transition to clean energy… third thing I’m doing is I’m calling on oil companies to pass the savings on to consumers.”

Biden noted, “So far, American oil companies are using the windfall of profits to buy back their own stock, passing that money on to their shareholders, not to consumers.”

Yes, and it hasn’t stopped.

Not only did every Republican vote no on a Democratic bill to stop price gouging, but we in case that wasn’t clear, in mid 2020, then President Trump pressured his pals in Russia and Saudi Arabia to decrease oil output because it would be good for the oil and gas industry.

“Just spoke to my friend MBS (Crown Prince) of Saudi Arabia, who spoke with President Putin of Russia, & I expect & hope that they will be cutting back approximately 10 Million Barrels, and maybe substantially more which, if it happens, will be GREAT for the oil & gas industry!” Trump tweeted.

The New York Times reported, “the net income for the world’s oil and natural gas producers is set to double in 2022 from 2021, to a record $4 trillion. ‘Today’s high fossil fuel prices have generated an unprecedented windfall for producers,’ the agency, which is based in Paris, said in its World Energy Outlook, released this week.”

On Thursday, Shell and Total Energy reported third quarter profits more than double the same period the year before.

These profits are said to be due to Russia’s war on Ukraine. Profits. Yet somehow Republicans expect the American consumer to pay more to do their part, while they greedily grab up donations from the profits on the backs of Americans.

In August, the BBC included this context in their reporting: “Last year, (BP) chief executive Bernard Looney described the energy market as ‘a cash machine.’”

Indeed.

It’s greed and politics. Big oil continues to make big profits and prioritize shareholders over production as Americans are hammered between the pandemic, global inflation, and Russia’s unprovoked attack on Ukraine.

Republicans defend Big Oil like it’s the little guy in the room being attacked by mean Democrats, but the truth is very obviously much different.

Democrats are not asking Big Oil to stop making a profit; that is, after all, supposed to be their job. But companies used to operate with a sense of patriotism and take pride in contributing to our country. Whereas now, they pay as little in taxes as they can while they commit highway robbery on Americans during times of great trouble and pain. They have become monsters lacking any moral compass at all, and this behavior is by the biggest recipients of enabled their greed, the Republican Party.

What does the Republican Party stand for now, other than conspiracies, robbing liberties and freedom, attacks on democracy and unrelenting power grabs for the oligarchs?

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