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Freedom to buy affordable oil also a really great freedom

"I'll be totally honest: the fact that this guy has a lot of oil makes up for the fact that he's a complete dick," President Obama declared.

Mounting calls for protests in the mythical kingdom of Saudi Arabia have helped to keep oil prices at around $106/barrel this week, with options nearing $200/barrel, in the latest sign that just maybe there was actually a pretty damn good reason why millions of people have been deprived of their political freedoms for decades throughout North Africa and the Middle East.

Intensified protests in Bahrain have likewise contributed to the general feeling that democracy movements are slightly less awesome when they make it prohibitively expensive to drive a SUV to Best Buy, then to Chipotle, then to the mall, then to Starbucks, then back home, then to Best Buy again to make a return. Saudi Arabia understands this, explained King Abdullah (see the shit-eating grin above). In fact, such an idea is an integral part of the great kingdom’s philosophy of governance. “Regulations in the kingdom forbid categorically all sorts of demonstrations, marches and sit-ins…as they contradict Islamic Shari’a law and the values and traditions of Saudi society,” said a recent government statement. The statement continued, “Wow, we really do lay on the bullshit pretty thick around here”.

Unrest in Libya–the third largest producer of oil in Africa–dragged oil production in parts of the country down by two-thirds and coincided with a high in crude oil prices of $120/barrel in late February. Instability in Bahrain and Oman have caused even more worry due to their proximity to tropical Saudi Arabia, which is working to ward off its own versions of protests. To the casual, oil-addicted observer, it would appear that democratic protests may be inversely correlated with stable, reasonable oil prices, positively correlated with higher oil prices, mutually exclusive to ruthless dictatorship, and synonymous with having to spend more money to fill up a car with gasoline and making less money available to buy an iPad–thus making political freedom seem like a fairly silly idea when the new iPad is in question, and actually making King Abdullah look incredibly attractive, particularly when he is sitting in a vat of crude oil, and in spite of the fact that he looks a bit like an over-sized rodent. Putin, Chavez, Qaddafi, and Ahmadinejad are likewise bathing naked in vats of crude oil, although they’re not quite as receptive to sexual advances by American presidents.

The United States clarified its support for peaceful protesting–even in a place steeped in as much oil-covered tradition as Saudi Arabia–then winked and gave King Abdullah a full body massage and an herbal facial treatment before promptly going down on him.

Protesters in Saudi Arabia remain concerned that their behavior could rob Americans of the right to drive a lot, everywhere, whenever they'd like.

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