Local gas station sign: ''We do not support terror. We do not buy ME oil." Really?

A gas station/convenient store in town (a chain of them actually) has taken to flying a banner above their pumps that reads “We do not support terrorism. We do not buy Middle Eastern Oil.” I have my doubts that they know or care about where their oil comes from.

Knowing people’s attitudes in this town I have a feeling the gas station is just doing this as a way to drum up business. I believe it is a Sinclair station (with local ownership) if that makes any difference.

Is it possible for these gas stations to be that certain where their oil is coming from? How do they know? Doesn’t more than half the oil come from the Middle East? If that’s the case how is this station able to buy non-ME oil and charge the same prices as every other station in town?

And just how does buying ME oil support terrorism anyway?
“Well, it’s a big sandy place and some of those guys were wearing cloths over their heads… I’ll bet they’re all goshdurn terrorists…”

Great!! lets ALL buy from places that don’t buy ME oil. Of course that will mean that their suppliers can’t cope with the additional demand, and they’ll have to get their oil from… any guesses?

Well, I think that Hess, Sinclair and Sunoco stations don’t buy Middle Eastern Oil, but not because of the moral issues, but because they lack the exploration or production facilities in that region.

Snopes Sez:

I’m glad to find that they were not insinuating that Maine supports terrorism…

Well, the Snopes answer in this case is illiterate. And stupid to boot.

First, Algeria is an Arab (largely) North African country: insofar as North Africa is typically included in “The Middle East” when one is speaking of “The Middle East” in the context of that idiotic boycott issue, the Snopes answer is wrong right there.

Second, while I am not familiar with Hess’ specific production network, it strikes me as highly unlikely that their refinery is captive to their owned production. If they are operating on ratoinal economic terms, they will be seeking the best priced crude on the market. Certainly long term contracts with their production facilities likely makes up most of their crude input, but I am equally certain they purchase crude off the spot markets when necessary, spot markets that will include Gulf oil.

See, by the way this refinery sourcing map: http://www.hess.com/hovensa/crude-map.htm

I should think a simple persusal of their annual report, which I am not inclined to do at this moment, would dispel further doubts.

Seriously though - from this side of the Atlantic you’ve gotta laugh at (some of) the Americans and their gross generalisations.

Just as the people of Grenada who the terrorists are…

Let’s ALL buy from places that don’t buy ME oil. Of course that will mean that they have so much business and so much money that they can open up some new oil wells and refineries to make us even less dependent on the ME oil?

To answer this part of the question, I would suggest it is unlikely the distributor can be certain of origins, although if it is largely sourced from Mex. Gulf area refineries, you might place good odds on it being Venezuellan or Mex Gulf oil.

I know what you mean Tarantula!!

Be careful what you say though. All americans are part of the michigan militia and were involved in the Oklahoma bombing.

Mind you, it wasn’t that long ago that moron brits used to say similar things about the irish.

Theres only so much oil available and it’s running out. ME oil is going to be used because they have it and its a scarce commodity that is in high demand. Opening an oil well isn’t like opening a new franchise of McDonanlds…

Great. Maybe they can destroy the Arctic too.

Don’t worry about it - nobody’s perfect.

It just seems that America can’t get over the fact that it finally got attacked. Yes it was terrible and yes, thousands of innocent people died, but essentially it was just a tiny taste of what the American Govt. has been dishing out to other nations for years. Iran, Panama, Grenada, Vietnam, Afganistan… the list goes on and on.

I don’t think there is anyone in the world who doesn’t feel sadness for all the lives lost in the WTC bombing. But what about the Pentagon attack - any military force that cannot defend it’s headquarters from attack by an unarmed civilian aircraft deserves anything and everything that it gets.

America - you got attacked. Get over it.

No, it just does not work that way:

The oil market is a highly liquid market. Main sourcing rigidities are found in converting refineries to handle different grades of crude.

Development of new fields is an expensive, long term endeavor, highly capital intensive and locking in mucho resources.

The largest and least expensive to extract from fields remain in the Middle East - North Africa region, with older capacity in Europe and North American in permanent decline given reasonable projections on pricing - lifetimes might be extended with higher prices that can justify the higher-cost-to-extract reserves. New reserves are being identified in Africa, but are largely expensive, deep water reserves, and all are in politically unstable areas. Same goes for Central Asian reserves, with Russian being a possible exception, but their reserves are in difficult areas and are not cheap to extract.

Consumer boycotts tend to be fickle and transitory.

What hydrocarbons firm in its right mind would, on the basis of a silly ‘boycott’ of “Middle Eastern oil.” Buying more from “non-Middle Eastern” oil producers is first of all a silly concept, second of all in a short term spike it is vastly cheaper to simply buy on short term contract or the spot market, inevitably from Gulf areaa producers, who if they sense they were being cut out of the market could simply underprice others.

The entire idea is a complete crock not even worthy of being mentioned, unless to be ridiculed for its illiteracy.

Substitute to other fuels, then you have something, but continuing to consume oil means Middle East.

Dignan, I don’t know if your gas station is in the US or not. If it is their claim of not selling ME oil is no big deal because most other stations could probably make the same statement. Surprisingly, the US only gets about 10% of its oil from the ME.

Ignore the sign.

It’s just meant to whip up revenue based upon patriotric fervor, fear or prejutice and is the equilvalent of the duct tape defense.

Boy, I sure hope so. I mean, I REALLY want an old Cadillac Hearse with a 500cubic inch V-8. I wonder how many cubes you can get by boring and stroking it? It sure would look cool with an 8-71 blower sticking out of the hood. :cool:


You’re new here, so let me give you notice, we do not allow political discussion in General Questions. This forum is about facts. If you want to discuss politics, you may do so in Great Debates, but not here. See the stick thread at the top of the this forum: (heh) politics in GQ).

Stick to facts in this forum.

DrMatrix - GQ Moderator

Only 10%, eh?
Let’s see…America’s got domestic oil production in Alaska, Texas, and the Gulf of Mexico. Then there’s Mexico, Venezuela, and other Latin American countries. Plus, we get some oil from the North Seas oil fields. Anyone got a site for how much of our oil comes from which sources?

I know that the Gulf Coast oil industry in decline. One of my professors in college (about five years ago) said that the oil rigs in the Gulf of Mexico might become unprofitable within a few decades.

Wow, thanks for all the responses. After reading them all the conclusion is:

It is probably true that they don’t buy Middle Eastern oil. It is not necessarily because they are run by an upstanding patriotic citizen (I know the guy that owns it, he’s not), but because the company doesn’t have the resources and just a coincidence; the local guy isn’t responsible for it at all and is cashing in on political feelings. When it comes down to it, if the station/corporation could get cheaper gas that was Middle Eastern oil they would cast their principles aside and do it.

Should I just settle for a personal boycott (along with any friends I can convince)? Or should I write the local paper and try to call out the absurdity of this gas station’s marketing technique?