President Obama's approval ratings have tanked in recent weeks, as Americans get more and more frustrated with high gas prices.
In light of this, there has been chatter that the Obama Administration is considering releasing oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve.
Is that a wise move?
Does the President really control gas prices?
Douglas Holtz-Eakin, the former Chief Economist on President George W. Bush's Council of Economic Advisors and former head of the Congressional Budget Office, rejects the idea that the President controls gas prices, at least in the short term. But he argues that President Obama could have done a better job of about addressing the global oil supply crunch by more aggressively drilling for oil and other fossil fuels instead of focusing on alternative energy.
As for the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, Holtz-Eakin believes that shouldn't be tapped except in cases when oil supply is actually disrupted, as opposed to expensive.
And what is responsible for high oil prices? Speculation?
No, says Holtz-Eakin. Speculation may play a minor role, but the real driver of oil prices is the change in supply and demand as emerging economies consume more and more of it. (See: Speculation in the Oil Markets Must Stop: Senator Bernie Sanders)
The smartest response for the United States, Holtz-Eakin argues, is to pursue all avenues at once: Develop new oil supply, encourage conservation, and diversify into other fuels and technologies.
SEE ALSO: Here's The US Energy Outlook Through 2035.