How can oil prices continue to plummet whilst “The largest U.S. refinery strike in 35 years entered its fourth week on Sunday as workers at 12 refineries accounting for one-fifth of national production capacity were walking picket lines.”
This is no isolated phenomenon; the UK oil industry is witnessing a one round burst of 1,500 jobs being slashed. 15,000 more jobs are predicted to be cut, these are by no means small numbers. That is exactly what those numbers are meant to deploy: panic, fear and pressure. Pressure on whom, that is the question. But should we be as outraged as these oil companies are? Since when has big oil cared about job cuts? Since when have the unions and oil been in unison, or them being represented as such? Why would Shell offer striking US workers 2% annual pay rises in such a troublesome time?
This brings us to the oil crisis of 1973-4, when the Arab countries enacted an “oil embargo” to pressure the US and its allies to press for a resolution to the Zionist-Palestinian conflict. What did the US government, the Nixon administration and the oil companies instead press to do?
Certainly what they did is not what Brown University Professor Eduardo Porter claims in the New York Times: