What does it take to understand that prices -- that is, the cost of living -- are certain to rise broadly & durably due to the follow-on effects of the high price of fuel?
Delta Airlines (AP newswire) is trimming jobs, reducing planes and cutting flights while stating they expect their jet fuel bill next year to be $2 billion higher than they had previously anticipated. Fuel was already, at 29 percent, the largest cost component of Delta's operating budget.
Recent quarterly earnings at FedEx are down 6 percent, versus the year-ago period (AP), and executives echoed the note from UPS that shipments are down since late January.
During our President's Pentagon speech this week on the fifth anniversary of the invasion of Iraq he appeared to be under heavy sedation. It seems to be dawning on him not only that Iraq didn't work out, but also that his adventure has killed a hundred thousand people and is helping to wreck the economy.
FT's Andrew Ward reported this week on President Bush's earlier oil price epiphany ...
During a White House press conference last month, George W. Bush was startled when a reporter asked what advice he had for Americans facing the prospect of $4 a gallon gasoline.
“Wait, what did you just say? You’re predicting $4 [That quote in Euro and GBP -- €2.55, £2.02 -- probably doesn't startle Europeans. -ed] a gallon gasoline?” the president replied, prompting the reporter to assure him prices were indeed closing in on that figure. “Oh, yeah? That’s interesting. I hadn’t heard that.”
Presidents and other heads of state in white stucco houses do not drive themselves, so you can imagine why the synapses are slow. But this is proof that the President doesn't read or speak with his advisers -- and has probably been sedated for more than a few weeks.