Boycott Exxon Mobile & Shell

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by FFTT, Apr 27, 2006.

  1. FFTT macrumors 68030

    FFTT

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    #1
    There is growing call to boycott Exxon Mobile all across the country for blatant profiteering and price gouging.

    Shell Oil has also always been at the top of high prices.

    It doesn't take much effort to take your business elsewhere.

    If Exxon Mobile and Shell drop their prices, everyone else will too.

    For once, no one will mind if you pass gas.:D
     
  2. crazycat macrumors 65816

    crazycat

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    #2
    Well if you dont like the prices take your business somewhere else. I dont care how much a company charges for a product, if you dont like it dont buy it.
     
  3. Cooknn macrumors 68020

    Cooknn

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    #3
    I get my gas as Costco. Always the best price in town. Sometimes not by much though...
     
  4. emw macrumors G4

    emw

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    #4
    I do when I can, but it's not always convenient - the one nearest to me isn't allowed to sell gas. I don't get that - some sort of local ordinance protecting other gas retailers or something?

    I'd be surprised if these "boycotts" result in any real action by the companies. People need gas, and these companies supply it. People will only boycott as long as (1) it's a fairly simple and convenient thing to do, and (2) it won't cost them money. Speedway and Gas City, which are pretty much the 2 "lesser known" brands peddling gas in my area, are often as expensive if not more so that the major brands.

    But the real problem continues to be that we're overly dependent on oil for everything we do. Getting the gas companies to reduce pricing only makes it easier on us, and in the end prolongs the problem. We need to fix our dependence, develop alternative fuels, and stop pointing the fingers at greedy oil companies. It's our own damn fault.
     
  5. nbs2 macrumors 68030

    nbs2

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    #5
    First, I didn't know that Exxon had started a cell service. Second, in my town Shell has the two cheapest gas stations (BP Amoco is the highest, followed and sometimes beaten by Freestate:eek:).

    Third, these boycotts are meaningless. They don't reduce our driving. Most people still drive as much as they used to, and then demand that the government investigate and insititute price controls. The government is not your mother....Supply is level, demand goes up. Therefore price goes up. You can either increase supply (which many don't want) or reduce demand to lower prices. That means driving less - not boycotting.

    And if you want to effect real change, driving won't do anything. We consume more oil doing other things. Our economy is built around oil. If I remember right, somewhere around 80% of the economiy relies directly on black gold. If you want to use less oil and get gas prices to drop, buy less stuff, eat food grown near your home, etc.

    If you want a real drop in price, bomb China, India, and Europe. That should reduce demand drastically. Please do not try this at home
     
  6. bousozoku Moderator emeritus

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    #6
    Chevron Texaco is also making record profits.

    You can't stop them with a boycott but it will send a message--if you can keep away from their products totally. Eventually, unless you can give up your vehicle and not use another vehicle, even a bus, you're going to be dependent on oil.

    Remember that oil is also used in creating plastics. Recycling counts. All those people drinking bottled water and soda need to recycle to conserve oil.

    Obviously, the companies aren't going to just hand out money. Free enterprise isn't about free money, though it's probably about being able to hurt people freely and take their money any way that they can.

    The way they talk on the news, we should all have stock in the oil companies because people are getting rich now. I'm glad someone is.
     
  7. jelloshotsrule macrumors G3

    jelloshotsrule

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    #7
    this is a bit of a tricky issue for me for a few reasons.

    i don't feel the boycott will do much, as many of the non name brand gas stations get their gas from the major places. so getting it at freestate is still supporting their supplier. also, for all the reasons everyone else pointed out (plastics, etc), this is not their only source of funds.

    also, i think people paying more will encourage conservation. it may not happen right away, but already there's been a push towards hybrids away from suv's.... even if it's not a long term solution.

    that said, the people who suffer are often the poor (have to live further from their work, have old cars and can't afford new hybrids, etc).

    and finally, oil companies are making record profits. what is profit? profit is basically the excess cash that gets shared amongst whoever. at some point, the negative impact of the product/industry has to be addressed so that the effects it has on the world (environment, people, etc) are at least somewhat paid for by some of those ridiculous profits.

    why do we really have to keep hitting "record profits" to feel like we're making progress in life? oh yeah, good ole capitalism.

    sucks the soul right out of you.
     
  8. FFTT thread starter macrumors 68030

    FFTT

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    #8
    Your point of view is well taken, but keep in mind that all these other retailers are simply following market trends set by their distributors.

    Exxon Mobile is the largest with the most profit of all time record.

    With enough organized pressure from consumers, they WILL lower their prices forcing the other retailers to follow.

    This is hurting people in every walk of life and unless people take action nothing will change.

    I guess we might as well not vote either, since our votes don't really matter.

    We spend hours posting to these forums, but somehow can't find the time to voice our discontent with our congressmen and other local officials.

    Perhaps we should amend the constitution to read

    We The Sheeple
     
  9. AtHomeBoy_2000 macrumors 6502a

    AtHomeBoy_2000

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    #9
    http://www.snopes.com/politics/gasoline/gasout.asp

     
  10. jelloshotsrule macrumors G3

    jelloshotsrule

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    #10
    well i did vote for nader twice, and you know what most say about that! ;)


    your point is well made though. and i agree that it's worth trying. i already do in fact try to avoid exxon. even though i worry that it's a pr stunt (well i know it is, but i worry that that's ALL it is), i would much prefer to give my money to bp or other companies that at least pretend (and hopefully more) to understand the real environmental impact of energy usage.

    we the sheeple. i like that. all too true.
     
  11. jelloshotsrule macrumors G3

    jelloshotsrule

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    #11
  12. aristobrat macrumors G4

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    #12
    As others have pointed out, the only way to accomplish this is to REDUCE THE AMOUNT OF GAS YOU USE. And frankly, I don't think many Americans are willing to make even a small lifestyle change that would accomplish this.

    Take your business away from Exxon and giving it to XYZ Oil Company is great, until next quarter when XYZ Oil Company posts record profits because their volume went up (because they're handling their customers + the ones boycotting Exxon).

    Just sit tight. Like right after Katrina, people will get pissed, everything will get hot and heavy, and right before Congress has enough uuumf going to actually accomplish something, gas prices will go back and and everyone will quickly forget about it.
     
  13. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

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    #13
    This idea crops up every time gasoline prices spike. It's just plain silly.

    You probably couldn't boycott these refiners even if you wanted to. The gas from the off-brand retailers comes mainly from the big refiners, so if you fill at a place like Costco, you never really know who's gas you're buying. The best strategy to reduce prices is drive less, slow down, and fill up at the lowest price you can find, no matter what name is on the sign.
     
  14. AtHomeBoy_2000 macrumors 6502a

    AtHomeBoy_2000

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    #14
    I'm goign to get on my soapbox for 30 seconds here and just say 3 simple things...
    All new cars should be FlexFuel (E85) - Mandated by Government
    Governemnt should help Ethanol replace gas (even if they FORCE oil companies to invest their rediculous profits into Ethanol plants)
    Government needs to invest HEAVLY into Hydrogen research and development.
     
  15. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

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    #15
    fwiw...

     
  16. emw macrumors G4

    emw

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    #16
    I'm sssuming that the real reason we're having this conversation is that the price we're paying at the gas station is at an all time high, not because they're making a lot of money. They've always made a lot of money.

    My take, like with jello, is a little two-fold. For the most part I say "tough ****" - we brought this on ourselves through decades of dependence on oil, and now that we're starting to run low on it, we're blaming the oil companies for making a profit on our short-sightedness.

    Would I like to see them make less, and subsequently see lower prices at the pump? Sure I would, but the "outrage" this had caused will hopefully spur the U.S. to get their collective heads out of their asses and start recognizing the problem we face with the non-renewable nature of our primary fuel source.

    On the other hand, this does have a significant negative impact on the poorer segment of the population - they have fewer resources to divert to gasoline, and even see their bus, train, garbage pickup, etc., services increased as a result of the higher fuel costs.

    But I don't think I want to see a precedent where companies are forced to "control" profits. What's next? I pay too much for my computer, and I see Apple's making a heft profit. They should be limited in how much they make on a unit sold?

    We "vote" with our pocketbooks, and right now we're telling the oil companies that despite the fact that we hate them for making sick amounts of money, we'll continue to buy gas-guzzling SUVs, drive like maniacs, eschew public transportation, and do all manner of other things that continue to eat into our supplies of oil. Until it's gone, which no one believes is possible.

    The only way to drive prices down, as others have said, is to reduce demand. Calling our senators doesn't make this happen, unless they're going to demand car companies start meeting higher MPG numbers and meet stringent numbers of alternative fuel vehicles. Oh, and improve public transportation in suburban areas.

    Just another sign things won't change until we stop using so much oil. These guys make their best profit ever in a quarter and still the stock drops because it wasn't enough. Insane. Why would we expect them to drop prices if doing so means that company value, executive bonuses, etc., all get penalized. They don't give a crap about their workers any more than my company gives a crap about ours. It's all about profits, driving up stock prices, and paying upper management to squeeze the little guy.
     
  17. WildCowboy Administrator/Editor

    WildCowboy

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    #17
    Didn't people learn anything from the energy crisis in the '70s? Back then, Jimmy Carter went on TV from the White House and asked everybody to turn down their thermostats and put on sweaters to conserve energy. Lots of people did, and energy use dropped significantly. But then the utility and energy companies stepped and said that they weren't making any money, so they'd have to raise their rates. So the end result was that people ending up paying just as much on their bills, but were freezing themselves as well.

    The energy companies will get their money...there's not really anything you can do about it.
     
  18. nbs2 macrumors 68030

    nbs2

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    #18
    Hey - it means a lot to a lot of us. I was (not really) surprised to learn that 41% of oil company stock is held my the various retirement funds of American workers. And the more I invest, the more I stop caring about the little worker guy and realize that I'm the little guy that needs to benefit. For example, after the Boot Camp boost to stock prices, I was furious that Apple stocks were tumbling. But, the 2Q results made me realize that Apple is going to keep growing for the foreseeable future. Many others realize that, and I see that AAPL is up $1.19...
     
  19. FFTT thread starter macrumors 68030

    FFTT

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    #19
    Well, can't remember his name but one congressman is asking to see their books due to public pressure.

    Others are trying to get support for a windfall profit tax.

    The one thing these big boys do not want is someone taking a detailed look at their operations.

    The only reason a boycott would not work would be if not enough people take action.

    The retailer can call his distibutor if he's suffering and they will lower prices
    if enough people complain.
     
  20. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

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    #20
    Then Jimmy Carter was summarily drummed out of office. This message was received by politicians: ask Americans to sacrifice, and pay for it at the ballot box.
     
  21. jelloshotsrule macrumors G3

    jelloshotsrule

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    #21
    while that is true, it ignores the fact that conservation is important in the long run, besides merely saving $. that is, it's not a totally comparable situation to the 70s, though i can't claim i am fully versed on that energy crisis.


    fftt- i thought the snopes link raised some good points about why else it may not do much. you're still buying from someone, and no energy/oil company i know of is really struggling..
     
  22. aristobrat macrumors G4

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    #22
    Actually, if you read the snopes link a few posts ago, there's actually several economic reasons why a boycot wouldn't work. :confused:
     
  23. emw macrumors G4

    emw

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    #23
    Sure, while we're worried about plopping 5-6% of our salaries into our retirement accounts so that we can survive once we stop working, the company executives are pocketing millions of dollars because they've managed to cut costs by screwing the little guy.

    The little guy then goes out and bitches about paying too much for everything from chewing gum to cars, so those companies need to cut costs, which means they screw the little guy some more, and he therefore can't afford chewing gum and cars, and so prices drop, and companies go out and screw the little guy...[ad nauseum]

    Sure we care about stock prices - it's the only way most of us can hope to retire in any sort of comfort because we're not making 7 or 8-figure salaries. I swear, executive management is like a legalized pyramid scheme.
     
  24. bousozoku Moderator emeritus

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    #24
    The energy crisis of the 1970s had a few things fueling it: huge cars and poor fuel economy.

    It's where small cars finally made inroads in big numbers, leading to the big 4 automakers to cry foul. If not for that energy crisis, they'd never have created the Pinto, the Vega, and the Gremlin. They also had high fuel consumption for their size, along with weak performance.

    My parents traded their 1965 Cadillac Coupe de Ville for a 1970 VW Convertible because the price of gas had reached 29 9/10 cents per gallon and because the VW was cute.

    Safety and emissions laws cut into the gas mileage, too but a lot of American cars at the time were only getting 15 mpg on the highway.

    A lot of people stepped off the train as a means for transportation and were starting to take planes and demand for jet fuel was increasing wildly.

    I remember the bit about turning down the thermostat. My parents complied and what was already chilly became downright cold. Then, they bought a freestanding fireplace. That thing sucked more warm air out of the room that it provided heat. They switched that out for an Earth Stove. This was a better idea.

    Anyway, no matter what we do, someone has to look at the processes by which fuels are harvested, refined, and distributed. If they can't be trusted, should oil companies remain free to do what they want?
     
  25. Lyle macrumors 68000

    Lyle

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    #25
    This isn't an issue that I'm all that worked up about, to be honest, but I am hearing a lot about it on various talk shows.

    A lot of the anger seems to be over the record profits posted by the oil companies. If that were my concern, I'd want to know exactly how much profit Exxon-Mobil (for example) is making off of one gallon of gas. In other words, if I spend $3.00 per gallon when I fill up my tank today, how much of that is profit to them?

    One talking head I heard recently claimed that the average profit was around ten cents per gallon. If that's true, and if you were to just zero-out the oil company's profit altogether -- that only drops my cost to $2.90 per gallon. Big whoop.

    So I guess the question is, does anyone have an accurate and reasonably unbiased source for what kinds of profit margins the oil companies are seeing on a gallon of gas? I mean, it makes sense that if the demand has gone up, and they're selling more gas than ever before, that the profits will likewise go up. It doesn't necessarily indicate that anything sinister's going on.
     

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