Big Oil gushes big lies to keep socking it to taxpayers

Big oil will say anything, spend anything, to protect its profits and government subsidies.  By spending millions of dollars on ad campaign to defend its government subsidies, the oil industry has a whole lot of chutzpah.

This is an industry that profits from our pain at the pump, yet begs to keep collecting corporate welfare to the tune of $4 billion per year in federal subsidies. In fact, for every gallon of gasoline you purchase, $1.22 goes directly to the profits of Big Oil.

Let's take a moment to separate fact from fiction.

FACT:  The Big Five oil companies made a record $137 billion dollars in 2011, and every penny more at the pump increases their profits by another $200 million dollars now. While profits soar, oil companies are receiving about $7,610 a minute in tax breaks. 

Yep, that's YOUR hard-earned money flowing to an industry that doesn't need any financial incentive to drill, baby drill. (Speaking of which, U.S. gasoline prices are rising quickly now, despite the fact that domestic production of oil is at an eight-year high and domestic demand for oil and oil products is down significantly from the past.)

FICTION: The lobbying arm for the oil industry -- the American Petroleum Institute (API)  -- is spending tens of millions of dollars right now on a massive advertising blitz claiming that repealing the federal tax breaks will force industry to raise gas prices on American consumers.

You read that right. Congress is debating a bill (S. 2204) -- championed by Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ) -- to revoke Big Oil's boondoggle billions and redirect those taxpayer dollars into cleaner, renewable energy that will help ease our oil addiction and perhaps lessen our pain at the pump.

Yet API has the gall to portray the industry as hapless victims of attacks by politicians who...wait for it...want to make consumers pay more to fill up their tanks.

Unbelievable! Of course, API is spending a bundle of money to make people believe just that -- when in fact a report by the Congressional Research Service found that the repeal of five key oil industry tax breaks would lead to little or no increase of gasoline prices.

If we could only fill up our cars with the lies gushing forth from the oil industry these days, all of our tanks would be topped off.

Don't be a sucker. But do take action by urging Congress to stop oil industry handouts!