Where Have All the Petro Dollars Gone?

Jonny Lieberman
by Jonny Lieberman
where have all the petro dollars gone

There's an old Jackie Mason joke, "I love Puerto Rico. I go there every year– just to visit my hubcaps." I mention this funny/racist joke because gasoline prices have more than doubled in the last four years and the money's going… where exactly? Sure, Exxon Mobil and their oil baron friends are posting quarter after quarter of historic record profits. But how many cigars can you light with a $100 bill? Someone else must be getting fat and happy too, right? Right. Investment adviser, Ron Paul fan and economic blogger Michael "Mish" Shedlock posits that a lot of the oil revenue is headed towards the UAE's capital city. How much oil revenue? Only about six percent of the UAE's take home comes from actual oil. However, the JAFZA free trade zone offers many perks for those with huge surpluses of cash to, uh, invest. Check it: come 2009 Dubai will feature the world's tallest building (The Burj Dubai — 2,684 ft), the world's tallest structure (The Al Burj — 3,937 ft), the world's tallest hotel (The Burj al Alam — 1,644 ft), the world's first underwater hotel (Hydropolis), the world's biggest amusement park (the Disney World trumping Dubailand) and even more indoor skiing. Not to mention the world's largest waterfront and hundreds of luxury man-made islands. Let's put it this way: Dubai is home to about 20 percent of the world's [mechanical] cranes. Have a look.

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  • 50merc 50merc on Feb 15, 2008

    OK, let's review and see if I correctly understand some of the comments: - The mullahs who run Iran are only interested in self-defense, because the US Army will invade on a "whim"; - If Pat Robinson became President and the 700 Club ran Congress, then the US would be just like Iran, a place where gays, apostates and adulterers are publicly executed and terrorism is a major export; and - Exxon (i.e., its shareholders) deserves to have property expropriated because it tried to bribe Chavez and because Venezuela suffered from over 200 years of colonialism before 1830. Strange, isn't it, that millions around the globe would jump at the chance to move to America.

  • Jurisb Jurisb on Feb 16, 2008

    Moto- I agree with you. I mean, just look at those election`s candidates. Like Hillary, she has got so much money, she is so rich, yet she never stops. She can`t find an amount of money that would let her say-enough. Just more and more. She wouldn`t stop and say, i might give my money to people who actually need it, or say, I am old enough, I should devote more time for my family, I should find an interesting hobby. And so the life goes on. The loneliness is fulfilled with making more money, and pretending that everything is fine. One day she will wake up asking, how come that life has gone so fast. It`s because you have been running it with an afterburner in your ass, that`s why! Somehow I notice that the amount of wealth and money we increase is proportionate to loneliness we create. We look at the boys in yard playing football, and they don`t have David Beckham -like contracts, yet they play it with passion. they can share a candy, a smile, a pat without expecting anything back. Yet we can`t move a finger without an invitation from a greenback. Ditto the Exxon. They never have enough...... I imagine their CEOs, fat, bald, wrinkled with the latest gadgets and cars, and a private jet, and an island and chicks on their laps sipping screwdrivers , yet they know themselves that all of this gives less passion and joy than even a single new bike that their daddy gave them in the childhood as a gift on birthday or a new fish aquarium, or a single fishing tour with your best schoolfriend.They are tired, so tired, they even are too tired to cry and to sorry themselves, they just sigh in hopelessness and go on....making their next millions.

  • Shaker Shaker on Feb 16, 2008

    jurisb: "Rosebud..." Anyway, it's nice to see someone "reaching for the sky", but it's unknown whether Dubai's secular hubris will attract the sort of fundamentalist retribution similar to 9/11. I wouldn't sleep easy in one of their sky-piercing spires... Dubai our oil, please?

  • Chaser Chaser on Feb 16, 2008

    jurisb> I think that's the best post I've ever read by you and I couldn't agree more. Nice. :)