Ethics Observations On President Biden’s Most Unethical Tweet Yet

Less than two weeks ago, President Biden made a speech in which he commanded oil companies to lower their gas prices.

“To the companies running gas stations and setting those prices at the pump, this is a time of war, global peril, Ukraine. These are not normal times. Bring down the price you are charging at the pump. Do it now,” he said.

Then, on Fourth of July weekend, he repeated the order.

Observations:

  • With all the dumb, inappropriate and unethical tweets Donald Trump issued as POTUS, did he ever send out a worse one than this? The tweet in which he told members of “The Squad” to go back to their own countries was terrible, but was it worse than blaming oil companies for what is significantly the fault of Biden’s own policies, playing the war card when Biden did so little to try to stop Putin from invading Ukraine (in fact, signaling that Vlad could get away with it) and finally, exceeding the power and role of his office by ordering private companies to do his bidding?
  • Wait, isn’t it Trump and the Republicans who are supposedly fans of “autocratic” leadership? The President doesn’t have the right to issue orders to companies and individuals. It is unethical for him to do so. In fact, behaving like that is a far more legitimate justification for impeachment than anything President Trump was impeached for.
  • At least 165,900 Americans “like” Democratic Presidents behaving like kings. Good to know.
  • The factual and economic ignorance inherent in the earlier speech and the recent tweet is frightening. Biden also doesn’t know who runs gas stations. The National Association of Convenience Stores, explains, “Only about 0.1% of the fueling outlets in the country are owned by a major oil company.”  62% of U.S. gas stations are owned by an individual or family who only operates a single retail gas location. NACS also noted that gas stations make a “10- to 15-cent profit” on a gallon of gas, and NBC News reported that “Station owners make most of their profits in their stores, on sales of food and drinks, as well as alcohol where sales are legal.”

Other than that, well done, Mr. President! Funny, I thought President Trump was the one who shot off his mouth without knowing the facts.

  • Many, many commentators, economists, journalists and politicians mocked Biden’s tweet, with Amazon tycoon and Washington Post owner Jeff Bezos getting the most publicity, as he wrote, “Ouch. Inflation is far too important a problem for the White House to keep making statements like this. It’s either straight ahead misdirection or a deep misunderstanding of basic market dynamics.”

It’s both, Jeff. Now accept responsibility for shilling for this boob and using your newspaper to make sure news stories that might have defeated him were buried or never reported.

  • Here’s the humina-humina response to the criticism by the National Security Council’s John Kirby, Biden’s intermittant paid liar, on Fox News:  “I think anybody that knows President Biden knows he’s plain-spoken and he tells exactly what he’s thinking in terms that everybody can understand.” What? A President can’t just blurt out what he’s thinking, especially when what he’s thinking is stupid, or based on ignorance, or amounts to an abuse of power. That’s what Trump’s critics complained about, and justly so. “Plain-spoken?” “In terms that everybody can understand?” You mean “dumbing everything down so it appeals to idiots”?

If this isn’t Biden’s worst tweet, I’m terrified of what the worse one will be…

17 thoughts on “Ethics Observations On President Biden’s Most Unethical Tweet Yet

  1. “NACS also noted that gas stations make a “10- to 15-cent profit” on a gallon of gas, and NBC News reported that “Station owners make most of their profits in their stores, on sales of food and drinks, as well as alcohol where sales are legal.”

    Might not be 1:1 (Canada and all) But this is about right.

    I can set a policy on price and make a margin on fuel regardless of what the price is, but stability is the key: We tend to lose more than we gain when the price is fluctuating wildly, so mileage may vary… But we pull an average of 8% as a margin off pump fuel sales, little bit less when you factor in bulk deliveries. On a $5 gallon, that’s $0.40. $0.10 – $0.15 seems low, but it depends on the timeframe. There’s weeks we lose money because the Rack price is higher than market.

    Regardless on whether it’s $0.10 or $0.40, there are states (looking at you California) where something like 25% of the price of fuel is comprised of a cornucopia of federal, state and local taxes. That’s $1.25. And then, when all is said and done the government takes more: a nickel here, a dime there, payroll taxes, property taxes, income taxes, permits…. Just to be clear: The government writ large makes more money off the sale of a gallon of gas than the people who retail it, despite not having to life so much as a pen to make the sale happen.

    If Brandon wanted to lower the pump price, he could do more overnight by suspending the Federal portions of fuel taxes than retailers could do by selling the fuel at cost.

    But he won’t.

    • The WSJ editorial board echoes your sentiments: From ‘Bidenomics 101 “It’s embarrassing for the leader of the free world to sound like he’s channeling Hugo Chávez. ” and

      “More than a quarter of gas stations have closed since the 1990s because they couldn’t make the economics work. If retailers were to sell fuel at cost, most would go out of business.”

      Biden, or his advisors, or all of them, know this. But they’ve demonstrated over the past 18 months both a willful disregard for the law and for the facts when they don’t like them. Evidently they think we’re ignorant idiots. Well the Biden stickers saying “I did that” were showing up on pumps well before the war in Ukraine.

      Couple that with the renewed call by Biden for an ‘exception’ to the filibuster, this time for abortion. I am reminded of the clip Jack posts from the movie “Mars Attacks” — your stupid minds!

      My dog some time ago ate a whole package of chocolates, presumably because they smelled and tasted delicious. She didn’t know they would make her deathly ill and might’ve killed her. But the Democrats must know that killing the filibuster is guaranteed to come back to hurt them, Real Soon Now. They are not that stupid — are they?

    • And an excellent paragraph from Professor Turley, writing about our ‘rage culture’.

      “Now, with predictions of Democrats losing both houses, Biden is calling to end the legislative filibuster. It is akin to the Titanic’s captain spotting the iceberg and immediately ordering the lifeboats to be burned.”

      Very apt.

  2. But Jack, Jack, Jack. We’re talking about OIL COMPANIES! They are bad, bad, bad. They are evil incarnate! They expect to make a profit for putting all that capital at risk doing crazy things like drilling miles into the ground below the Gulf of Mexico to find oil so after it’s transported to a really complicated thing called a refinery and then to our local gas station, we can all get in our cars and go to work or the grocery store. Any attack on Oil Companies is admirable. They deserve it.

    Actually, his tweets are doubtless written by a twenty-five-year-old Columbia journalism major. This is how kids think. Profits are immoral. The oil companies should be nationalized so we can become Mexico and Venezuela. Hey, at least that will solve the illegal immigration problem!

    Honestly, I’m not sure how this tweet is any worse than about twenty or so others. Any of his comments on Dobbs or the Supreme Court could take the top spot.

    • To Biden and his old boss, the oil companies are nothing more than public utilities, who exist to generate fuel for the public (which they can tax) and profits to fill government’s coffers (which they can also tax heavily). Neither of those men spent much if any time in the private sector, and they know nothing about running a business or a company. To borrow from “Other People’s Money,” they never made anything other than speeches, created anything other than legislation (and not much of that), or sold anything other than access. They honestly don’t care much for anyone outside their ruling circle. Oh, they’ll take on the rich as sort of junior partners, since they are relatively few and they can afford to give a concession here and a concession there in order to keep them quiet. The middle class to them are frankly a scourge. There are too many of them to give concessions to and, if they play their cards right, they don’t need and in fact don’t WANT much government in their lives, nor have any use for the government’s activist friends/minions. If too many of the poor move up to the middle class, they lose their use as pawns.

      • I’m not sure why oil companies are the Commies’ favorite whipping boy. Maybe it goes back to the Northeast’s despising Texas and all things and people Texan? Of course, that old boy J.D. Rockefeller his own self was from upstate New York and when not in Cleveland lived in Westchester County. Dang.

    • “Actually, his tweets are doubtless written by a twenty-five-year-old” – the tweet appears to be a direct quote from a speech that Biden gave – so, a group of professional speech writers in the writers room actually vetted that statement and included it in a speech that probably also was vetted by a number of Biden’s advisors. If that doesn’t make it seem a whole lot worse, I don’t know what would.

  3. So when are we not in a time of war and global peril, especially according to the Left? The answer is, “Never,” so his first paragraph isn’t justification for anything.

    What does, “Bring down the price you are charging at the pump to reflect the cost you’re paying for the product” even mean? Does he want the fuel distribution industry to sell everything at their cost? That’s not how a capitalist society works.

    Perhaps this is meant to say the times are extraordinary, and that for the duration of this “time of war and global peril” the companies should sell gasoline at cost? Or does “reflect the cost” mean something else? And when will we not be in a “time of war and global peril?” When Russia stops invading Ukraine and makes peace? We are left to guess.

    This isn’t just dumb, Jack, it is utterly incoherent. I can’t figure out what he means, and that doesn’t seem to be a function of Twitter’s character limit. For someone who is “plain spoken,” according to his defenders, this tweet is remarkably opaque. Furthermore, no matter what he meant (whether talking about a “reasonable” profit or selling at cost), the President has no business involving himself in this issue, much less making it sound like an order as if he were a king or a despot.

    By my lights, this is yet another example of Biden’s age-related mental infirmity. That’s why he simply doesn’t understand what an atrocious message this sends, or how weak, feckless, and incompetent it makes him look. Biden’s tweet cannot be rationally defended by anyone, and even if the retailers did his bidding and lowered the price of gas by (let’s just assume a 10% profit and say fifty cents at $5/gallon), gas would still cost $4.50 per gallon.

    Is that savings really significant? I’d say no, and as long as Biden continues to restrict supply, the price will continue to rise whether the retailers sell it at cost or not.

    Allow more oil exploration, drilling, and fracking, President Biden. Do it now.

  4. “At least 165,900 Americans “like” Democratic Presidents behaving like kings. Good to know.”

    You don’t know that the likes are from Americans. They could be Russian or Chinese bots. Or Californians.

  5. Our next door neighbors owned a Gas Station. My husband’s clients owned another. We also knew some others who owned some.

    They do NOT make much per gallon at all. A few cents. Not even 10 or 15.

    They relied on concessions, and other things (if they had a mechanic) to bring in extra money.

    Rent is VERY expensive on the corners of major streets where most are.

    I am shocked that those telling the President what to do would not give him accurate information.

    In EVERY case above, the people worked 7 days a week, and both the husband and wife worked and it was not an easy business to run.

    Blows my mind that the most they can do on the left is blame, shame and whine.

    • I will venture the opinion that the people advising Biden have little or no knowledge of the gasoline (and diesel) distribution business. They have probably never actually worked a day in their lives, being either students or some kind of staff-weenie for a government functionary. Nor do they know much about how the remains of dead dinosaurs become motor fuel, or any other hydrocarbon-based products. They only want everyone to “go green”.

      I was a “pump jockey” back in the early 60s and my boss worked 6 days a week from dawn to dusk. I pumped gas, washed windshields, checked oil and water, and tires… for $1.35/hour. I say that to show that I probably have a better grip on that business model than any presidential advisor. And I wouldn’t change that for anything, even 60+ years later.

  6. This Tweet seems well-written:

  7. I’d like to be wrong, but this won’t be the worst tweet out of Biden we’re gonna get. We’re not even halfway into his term, and I’ve already gone numb from my head exploding.
    I had just turned 5 when Reagan was sworn in, but price controls, rationing, and nationalization seem like the next logical steps for this administration. Wait until they figure out that it’s not just gas stations…

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