Originally Posted by CookingWithGas
(As a tangent, there are also the conspiracy theorists who call upon the government to "do something" when oil prices go up, as though it could repeal the law of suppy and demand. The government has really little influence over it and has not found evidence of illegal price fixing.)
Not quite true. Oil is a cartelized commodity. The price per barrel is determined by the law of supply and demand, but the supply
on the global market is determined by OPEC's production quotas. In fact, one of the necons' aims in invading Iraq was to privatize its state-owned oil industry and, thereby, break the back of OPEC. It didn't work out that way, mainly because the U.S. oil companies, for their own reasons, didn't want it to. See here.