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Thursday WTF

Happy Friday



I hear the IRS is releasing stimulus cash to anyone that direct deposited their refunds beginning next week.  The balance by mail will be released about the 2nd week of May. 

Thank God.

Just in time to write a check to Exxon Mobile.

They’re obviously hurting.

Thanks Uncle Sam for stimulating the oil and gas industry.

Reality Check.

China announced that (Cadillac) Escalade outpaced hybrids in sales, but it sure feels like we’re paying the tax on it…

And by the way- don’t warn the middle and below the middle class about conserving, driving less, or even about getting a hybrid.  When was the last time you saw a below the poverty level family sporting a new hummer anyway.  Geez.

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I’m just sayin…

Benn Rosales is the Founder and CEO of The American Genius (AG), national news network. Before AG, he founded one of the first digital media strategy firms in the nation has received the Statesman Texas Social Media Award and is an Inman Innovator Award winner. He has consulted for numerous startups (both early- and late-stage), and is well known for organizing the digital community through popular offline events. He does not venture into the spotlight often, rather he believes his biggest accomplishments are the talent he recruits and develops, so he gives all credit to those he's empowered.



  1. Matthew Rathbun

    April 25, 2008 at 3:36 pm

    Yep, last night I went and traded in my beloved Expedition and got a Nissan Versa. Not very cool, but very commuter friendly and it took me from 14 mpg to 35 mpg – with a cheaper payment.

    I’ve been ignoring the “green” movement; but have recently been changing my ways.

    On NPR last week I did hear a news report telling consumers to eat less beef (I will draw the line here on my movement to become more green) because the entire process of feeding, raising, shipping and cooking beef was bad for the environment. Two stories later they were talking about how there is a pending grain crisis because of the reduced production, since farmers can’t afford to produce it. They also said that the move to using grain as a cleaner fuel meant less for eating. I give up.

    Sky rocking gas prices, housing slump, environment, food prices, lack of food – yeah a new president will make it all better – whatever…

    Ok, now i just need a bottle of Jack Daniels.

  2. Matthew Rathbun

    April 25, 2008 at 3:39 pm

    …oh yeah and a crappy war…. Thanks for freaking pick-me-up, there Benn 🙂

  3. Brad Coy

    April 25, 2008 at 4:46 pm

    $75.00 at the pump last time I filled up. My ride is about do for a trade in. Am I looking at options? You betcha!

  4. Jim Duncan

    April 25, 2008 at 5:42 pm

    Is this where we commiserate on our pain? 🙂 my fillup on 21 April. Since then, gas has gone up nearly thirty cents.

    Changing ways? Abso-freaking-lutely. In many, many ways … I smell a post coming …

  5. Brad Coy

    April 25, 2008 at 5:58 pm

    Ha! Jim. It’s either here or over at Jessica’s post on Inman were I just followed you with a comment. Maybe we could meet up here again and commiserate when we’re all North of a C-Note. That is unless you are driving a Ford F-150. In that case, you’re already there. Who’s drinking? It’s Friday :O

  6. Glenn fm Naples

    April 26, 2008 at 1:57 pm

    Benn – you managed to defy the old TGIF saying. My economic stimulus rebate check is already planned to contribute to the big gasoline companies.

  7. Eric- New Orleans Condos and Lofts

    April 26, 2008 at 9:30 pm

    Exxon Mobile is not the cause of high gas prices. They in fact control less then 3% of our supply. I am glad an American company is helping getting us more supplies and hiring Americans. The Chinese will be drilling near Cuba in the near future which is almost to Florida. There is something wrong with the entire blame someone.

    Its time we conserved instead of talking about it all the time. I think more blame should be placed on Congress for the Ethnol mess we are in. Does anyone remember how this was going to help the world? We have some rich farmers and a lot of poor people facing increased cost for basic food stuffs.

  8. Genuine Chris Johnson

    April 26, 2008 at 9:46 pm

    The green movement should stop the preaching, and just go with “it’s cheaper anyway.”

    The Libertarians should say, “end corporate welfare, vote libertarian.”

    And then, we should all remember that the consequence of free enterprise is the right for osmoene that bears the risk of an investment to also reap a reward.

  9. Glenn fm Naples

    April 27, 2008 at 7:31 am

    Chris – excuse my ignorance, but what is an “osmoene”?

    Eric – do you think the big energy companies are using NIFO accounting as it seems the price at the pump goes up as the price of crude goes up?

  10. Benn Rosales

    April 27, 2008 at 8:16 am

    Exxon Mobile is not the cause of high gas prices.

    Yes, Eric, we know.

    Its time we conserved instead of talking about it all the time.

    Did you know that electricity and water providers have a minimum use tax? Example: I use an average of 1050 kwh to run my home yet I am charged for 1500 kwh no matter what I conserve- I use roughly $20 a month in water, yet I am charged for $40. We’re not a wealthy family here Eric, we conserve, we’re still taxed- Eric, where is the incentive in this style of economics? There isn’t one.

    We bumped off of 99 cents per gallon (gasoline) during Katrina.
    Then the excuse was refining was down due to storms off of Mexico
    The next excuse was hard winters which we’ve not had in two winter seasons
    The next excuse was refining offline due to upgrades
    The next excuse was tensions with Hugo and Iran
    The next excuse is China and India learned how to drive
    The next excuse is…. All of this in a span of 3 years. I smell bullshit. The problem is speculation. the answer is someone standing up and saying enough- ie. Americans.

    The point of my post is I was talking to some great everyday average folks this past Friday as they described how they had just paid $5.45 for a gallon of milk, Eric. They are absolutely stretched to the bare bone. We talked about the check coming from the IRS and I asked would it help, several said they would put it in their gas tanks, as one said it took to fill her little toyota $50. Yes, Eric, I said Toyota. I asked her how many times she would fill up this week she said probably twice. You see Eric, conserving is in her nature (we live in Austin) but her children live so close to school they have to be driven (they’re kindergarden and 3rd grade) twice a day to and from. On top of that she will need to visit the store several times during that week to manage her household, and pile on that the job she drives to twice a day to and from. I asked about her husband and could they carpool and share the burden but because they live in the burbs carpooling is not an option. He also fills his vehicle (a small pickup) twice a week to make the 10 time journey to and from. Eric, the point of all of this is you can multiply this across America a million times and still not count them all- they’re regular folks who live pay check to paycheck- they’re not out on the boat dropping $300 a fill just for the hell of it.

    So yes Eric, regardless of whether Exxon is at fault, they’ll pull in their biggest earnings this quarter as a result, and yes they’ll hire Americans, and yes, we should all not blame the 20 billion they’ll pull in this quarter in profit, but you know what? Who cares, the family I mentioned will spend their IRS money at the pump not at best buy. The money is a joke. The crisis is a speculation, and the victims are young families who will not be buying a home this year, much less a new car, a tv, a fridge, and if this keeps up- milk.

    So thanks for educating me on your lofty economics, they mean nothing to regular people. I’m all for our free market system, but when it all boils down to it, regular folks should not have to ration their milk.

    Now anyone who wants to give me their play on how it’s a free society and no one owes these folks anything needs to know that I totally agree- what do I not agree with is when we begin to ignore the fact that kitchen table issues to average folks mean nothing anymore. They absolutely mean there is one industry in this country taking down the rest of the country and that is- yep, gasoline. And until someone reels the speculators in on this one, we’re in big f’n trouble.

    Gasoline is killing supply, supply will kill all else.

  11. Glenn fm Naples

    April 28, 2008 at 6:09 am

    Benn – your response to Eric was super. There are many people that are in the same boat as the family you discussed above and you have to feel for them being hit so hard in today’s economy.

    I especially liked your comment regarding the minimum use charge by utility companies. There is no incentive for people to conserve and it only penalizes those individuals that practice conservation of utilities.

    Being an older person (almost the big 60), I heard for many years the price of fossil rising and the issues that it would cause. It is finally happening and it took about 35 years. Maybe a solution should be to price gasoline taxes based upon the mileage per gallon a vehicle is rated for. The less mileage the higher the gas tax. Ops we can do that – it would hurt the automobile industry in the US. 🙁

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