The White House is still struggling to get a handle on the rapidly rising cost of living, and once again, it is the American people who continue to feel the pinch.
On Thursday, President Biden announced he would begin the release of oil from the U.S. strategic oil reserves to control the rapidly rising cost of gasoline. Over the past year, gas prices have been steadily on the rise, with the events of recent months only increasing the problem. President Biden has been adamant that international issues such as the ongoing Ukraine-Russia conflict are to blame for increased prices at the pumps – but that is not entirely true. A year ago, the average cost of a gallon of gasoline in America was $2.87. However, today the average price is a steep $4.22 and as high as almost $6 in some areas of California. While the conflict between Russia and Ukraine has certainly left its mark on the global oil trade, the price of gas had risen to almost $3.50 before that conflict even began. (RELATED: Biden Announces Largest-Ever Use of Strategic Oil Reserves)
Officials from the administration and even the president himself have repeatedly encouraged Americans to buy electric vehicles, citing the cheaper cost of fueling as an incentive. However, the average cost of an electric vehicle is around $10,000 more than the cost of a new conventional gasoline-powered car. And with new vehicle costs up around 12.2% in the last 12 months, this doesn’t really sound like a great alternative for those who are being priced out of filling their tank.
The release of oil from the U.S. strategic reserves comes at a difficult time for an administration that is desperately trying to reassure the public that they aren’t as out-of-touch as they seem. Last week, the administration faced news that national mortgage rates were on the rise, with little respite this week. (RELATED: As Mortgage Rates Rise, Fewer Americans Are Buying Homes)
It is not just at the pump that Americans are feeling the pinch. The increasing cost of oil has also caused a significant price increase for diesel, the most common fuel used by large trucks and industrial equipment. With diesel at an average price of $5.11, producers are struggling to deliver goods to shelves for the prices we are all used to, and everyday items are becoming more expensive. Economists do not expect any respite from inflation. Bloomberg economists Andrew Husby and Anna Wong estimate that the average family can expect their monthly costs for goods and services to rise by around $433.
As the impacts of inflation continue to spread, many are expecting meaningful action from the White House, but releasing one million barrels of oil a day, is simply not going to provide the level of relief needed for American families. Former President Donald Trump released a statement on Thursday criticizing the White House for depleting our oil reserves when the supply chain is already strained, stating: “It’s supposed to only be used for large-scale emergency or conflict. Now I see where Biden has just announced he’s going to take what we so carefully and magically built, and what will be a futile attempt to reduce oil and gasoline prices. They will soon bring it down to empty again. It just never ends!” Under President Trump, the domestic oil industry was able to thrive, eventually enabling the U.S. to reach energy independence to protect the economy from external factors. President Biden has received increasing pressure to ease his restrictions on domestic oil production, but that does not appear to be coming any time soon. (RELATED: Under Joe Biden, America is Running Out of Gas)
The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the positions of American Liberty News.