January 18, 2018
Only the Experts Know For Sure
Sometimes things just look differently to me than the experts say they should.

For example, when President Bush landed on the aircraft carrier last week and walked off that jet carrying, not wearing, his un-photogenic helmet it looked to me like the whole thing was a big campaign ad. But the experts said it looked like the President was so anxious to welcome back the troops he had to fly out to greet them even though their ship was just moments away from getting home. Some cynics thought it was nice Bush was finally making up for the time he went missing during his Texas Air National Guard days but they are not experts so what do they know?

Another instance of the experts seeing things differently than me was when Bill Bennett said it was OK for a Catholic who wrote the Book of Virtues to be a high stakes gambler. Growing up Catholic we were always taught that wasting (8 million dollars of gambling money in the Bennett case) was a sin. Well, I was wrong again but at least I finally saw what the first Bush Administration meant when they talked about those thousand points of light - it was slot machines. So, if gambling is not a vice is it a virtue or a half-virtue? Maybe Mr. Bennett, an expert on virtue, will get back to us on that.

Anyway, last week there was a report saying that the just announced huge first quarter oil company profits had nothing to do with the "coincidentally" record high gas prices during the first quarter and that we consumers hadn't been gouged or taken advantage of, and although I am no expert, I just can't see it being true.

Why? I've heard this story too many times before - during wars, crises, or every summer, oil companies report profits are up for that period but they claim those profits had nothing to do with prices being high at the pump. If the two aren't connected how can those two things keep happening together? Talk about your happy coincidences happening over and over and over again.

I wish just once, whether it's accurate or not, just to make us feel like we're not crazy even if we are; the experts would just say oil companies made a bundle, they made record profits because they took advantage of you. And that we consumers are too weak and unorganized and helpless to stop it. That would make me feel great. Because I'd feel I wasn't losing my mind, only some money.