CNN has been the subject of several controversies, from its coverage of the Boston Marathon bombing to the Cuomo Brothers. And despite its image as a woke lefty news organization, there’s something that shock you.
Because a CNN anchor just slams Biden’s flawed plan on Live Television!
On Wednesday, CNN anchor John Berman pressed Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm over President Joe Biden’s recent warning letter to oil firms — which powerfully illustrates the fascist economic views Biden harbors.
Biden accused oil firms of profiteering during a “time of war” in a letter to executives at BP, Chevron, Exxon Mobil, Marathon Petroleum, Phillips 66, Shell, and Valero Energy.
Biden said, “At a time of war, refinery profit margins well above normal being passed directly onto American families are not acceptable,”
“There is no question that Vladimir Putin is principally responsible for the intense financial pain the American people and their families are bearing. But amid a war that has raised gasoline prices more than $1.70 per gallon, historically high refinery profit margins are worsening that pain,” he added.
Ominously, Biden threatened to use “emergency authorities” if the companies do not follow his dictates. “Your companies and others have an opportunity to take immediate actions to increase the supply of gasoline, diesel, and other refined products you are producing,” Biden wrote. “My administration is prepared to use all reasonable and appropriate Federal Government tools and emergency authorities to increase refinery capacity and output in the near term, and to ensure that every region of this country is appropriately supplied.”
And if the firms do not comply with Biden’s demands, he has threatened to utilize “emergency authorities.”
“Your companies and others have an opportunity to take immediate actions to increase the supply of gasoline, diesel and other refined products you are producing,” Biden wrote. “My administration is prepared to use all reasonable and appropriate Federal Government tools and emergency authorities to increase refinery capacity and output in the near term, and to ensure that every region of this country is appropriately supplied.”
The term “fascist” is thrown around far too loosely in today’s political debate, but fascism is a type of socialism from an economic standpoint.
The government owns the means of production in a socialist economic system, whereas in a fascist economic system, the government often keeps firm ownership in private hands, but regulates prices and wages, hours, output levels, and even what is produced. In other words, as a business owner, you may keep ownership of your company, but the government directs how you manage it.
And that’s what Biden planning to do to the Americans.
Berman pointed up the absurdity of Biden’s remarks during an interview with Granholm on “New Day.”
“Five years from now, 10 years from now, are you telling me you want them drilling for more oil? You want the refineries putting out more gasoline in 5 years or 10 years?” Berman asked.
Berman exposed the hole in Granholm’s position when he confirmed that “what we’re saying is today we need the supply increased.” Why would oil firms spend in generating additional oil if the investment will be wasted in a matter of years?
“But that’s the problem for these companies,” Berman told Granholm. “These companies are saying, you know, ‘You’re asking me to do more now, invest more now, when, in fact, 5 or 10 years from now we don’t think that demand will be there, and the administration doesn’t even necessarily want it to be there.”
Well, the Biden administration has decided that, regardless of market considerations, the federal government should unilaterally dictate that transition.
Economic fascism is what this is. And blaming and threatening oil firms for a policy that they did not create is the height of hypocrisy in this case.
Here is the transcript of the exchange:
BERMAN: New this morning, CNN has obtained a letter President Biden sent to the major oil companies, including Shell, Exxon, BP, trying to pressure them to help reduce prices. And the implication seems to be do it or else. He writes, quote, refinery profit margins well above normal being passed directly on to American families are not acceptable. He also writes, I am prepared to use all tools at my disposal as appropriate to address barriers to providing Americans affordable, secure energy supply.
Joining me now is Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm.
All tools at his disposal. What tools specifically?
JENNIFER GRANHOLM, ENERGY SECRETARY: Well, John, I mean, you have heard talk about a variety of actions that Congress could take. The Defense Production Act has been on the table that the president has been using in other context. He — but he wants to hear — the reason why he wrote this letter is because he wants to hear from these refining entities about why was it, for example, when oil was $120 a barrel in March, and we paid about $4.25 a gallon, but today, when oil is the same price on a global market, we’re paying over $5 a gallon?
What’s causing that 75-cent delta?
We know that, as you noted earlier in the show, that capacity has come offline, refining capacity. But even between March and today, we are seeing these massive profit – this massive profit taking on the part of refiners. And so the president is calling both upon production of oil to increase in the United States and around the world, and he’s calling upon refinery capacity to increase. And he’s calling them to a meeting to say, what can we do to help make that happen?
BERMAN: When we talk about the tools, you mentioned some of the proposals being discussed in Congress.
Senator Ron Wyden, Democrat, has suggested a 21 percent surtax on excess profits from the oil companies. Is that one of the tools the president supports?
GRANHOLM: It is a tool. I’m not saying the president has made a decision about what he would support. He wants to hear from the companies first. But we know that that has happened, obviously, in the U.K.
And let me just remind everybody who’s watching, that this question of refining capacity and oil production are both global issues. Global refining capacity has come offline. And we know that due to the war in Ukraine, Russia’s ability to export millions of barrels of oil has also come offline because countries like the United States have rightfully said, we are not going to buy Russian oil.
And so the president has — is looking at every tool always. And the biggest tool he has, of course, is the Strategic Petroleum Reserve. And he is releasing 1 million barrels per day. But it’s not enough to account for the amount of oil that has been pulled offline due to the invasion of Ukraine.
And now it’s summer driving season, John. And as you know, historically, during summer driving season, prices have gone up because demand has increased. We’re also seeing that with China coming out of Covid, we will see another increase in demand globally.
But if you were in — if you were in Brazil, you’d be paying the same amount for gas at the pump, over $5. If you were in Canada, you’d be paying over $6. If you were in Germany, you’d be paying over $8.
BERMAN: Understood. Understood, Secretary. We’re talking about the United States, though.
GRANHOLM: So, this is happening around the world.
BERMAN: We’re talking about the United States right now and what the president can do.
BERMAN: And I just want to be crystal clear about this, it’s possible, you’re saying, that he would support a surtax on excess profits from oil companies?
GRANHOLM: I’m just saying that no tool has been taken off the table and he wants to hear from the refineries, the companies who are doing refining, to see what is the bottleneck and how we can increase supply. And he’s also asking, of course, for the oil and gas industry to increase supply as well by drilling more. They are about 100 rigs shy of what they were before Covid. They need to increase supply.
There was a study — there was a study yesterday that came out of Reuters and it said that while the profits in the first quarter were record profits —
BERMAN: Do you want — can I ask —
GRANHOLM: Were record profits, we also know that they returned about $9.5 billion to shareholders. If they had even taken half of that, we’re not against profit, obviously, they’ve taken just half of that and reinvested it in supply, we would see hundreds more rigs, we would see hundreds of thousands more barrels of oil. We’re asking them to be in this era, where we’re on a war footing, to consider increasing supply, both domestically and, of course, internationally.
BERMAN: Do you want – do you want – do you — five years from now, ten years from now, are you telling me you want them drilling for more oil, you want the refineries putting out more gasoline in five or ten years? GRANHOLM: What we’re saying is today we need that supply increased. Of
course, in five or ten years – actually, in the immediate, we are also pressing on the accelerator, if you will, to move toward clean energy so that we don’t have to be under the thumb of petro dictators like Putin or at the whim of the volatility of fossil fuels.
Ultimately, America will be most secure when we can rely upon our own clean, domestic production of energy through solar, through wind, through –
BERMAN: But that’s the problem for these companies. These companies are saying, you know, you’re asking me to do more now, invest more now, when, in fact, five or ten years from now we don’t think that demand will there be. And the administration doesn’t even necessarily want it to be there.
Just one last question on Saudi Arabia. The president is going to Saudi Arabia, where we understand he will be meeting with the crown prince, Mohammed bin Salman. Is there any kind of promise beforehand that the Saudis will increase production?
GRANHOLM: No. No, there’s no promise beforehand. He’s – no, there’s not.
And let me just say, John — John, I mean we’re — we really want to see us move to clean energy, but we also need to see this increase right now. And we are asking the oil and gas companies as well to diversify and make sure that part of — that they become diversified energy companies, to be able to produce other means of clean energy because they have huge, deep pockets, they have a big ability to invest in the future, as well as investing right now so that we don’t see oil and gas causing the inflation numbers and people being hurt every day.
This clip is ASTONISHING.
Energy Sec. @JenGranholm demands energy companies to make massive investments to increase oil supply while simultaneously saying they want to shut them down over the next 5-10 years.
WHAT IS THIS WHITE HOUSE?! pic.twitter.com/CTgC4dk92x
— Jason Howerton (@jason_howerton) June 15, 2022