RUSH: ‘ExxonMobil Corp said on Thursday it is getting out of the retail gas business in the United States as sky-high crude oil prices squeeze margins.’ Did you hear this, Snerdley? Would somebody send this story to Senator McCain? They are getting out of the retail gasoline business ’cause it’s not profitable. There isn’t a large enough profit in it. ‘Those branded service stations may be the most public aspect of Exxon’s business, but they account for a small part of the company’s profits.’ Did you hear that? Gasoline sales account for a small part of their profit. It’s such a small part. (doing McCain impression) ‘It’s a windfall, Limbaugh, I’m telling you, it’s a windfall! When I say it, it’s true.’ No, sir. Their profits in gasoline are so small that they are not worth the hassle to earn, and so they’re going to sell them. Again, I ask, you talk about windfall profits. Some Belgian bunch wants to buy Anheuser-Busch for 46 billion and some change. Have we ever investigated the obscene profits of beer manufacturers? Have we ever investigated the obscene profits of beer distributors? A license to print money. You don’t have to know diddly-squat. You get the franchise to be a beer distributor for A-B, as McCain’s wife has. Will we ever investigate those profits as obscene, as outrageous?
‘Out of the roughly 12,000 ExxonMobil branded stations in the United States, Exxon, the world’s largest publicly-traded oil company, owns about 2,220. Exxon plans to sell those service stations over several years. They include about 820 stations that it also operates. The company will maintain the Exxon and Mobil brands,’ so no matter who owns it you’re still going to think it’s ExxonMobil. ‘Consumers will still be buying gasoline at stations that carry the Exxon and Mobil names, but they will not be owned by the company. Service stations have struggled, even with $4-a-gallon plus gasoline prices because they have not been able to pass along to customers their additional costs from soaring crude oil.’ Now, you might ask, well, why is that? How come they can’t pass along — because all it takes is for somebody down the street to cut it a nickel, and you lose. When prices are this high, and they’re causing this much of an intrusion, this large an intrusion in the way people live, if you’re driving a big hog around there, and it takes 80 to a hundred bucks to fill up, and a nickel reduction in the price will make that hundred bucks 90, you’ll do it.
There are little games that are being played. There’s competition in gasoline, despite what people think. There’s competition in retail gasoline. There are a lot of different companies that refine it and supply it. And so the operators are not able to pass it on. In a lot of these Kwik Shop operations where you’ve got gas pumps and you go inside and you spent like $45 for a couple Twinkies, the gasoline is the loss leader. Well, it is, Snerdley. What are you sitting in there laughing about? Whatever you go in there and buy, I’m telling you it’s true. You know how expensive the little munchy items you get inside are? That’s what carries the freight for these guys ’cause this story is true. The margin in gasoline, no matter how high the price gets, is not that great ’cause it still costs them. I mean, their wholesale price increases accordingly and proportionally. There’s so much misunderstood about this. The sad thing is, the sad, sad, the really potentially dangerous thing is that the greatest degree of misunderstanding happens to reside inside the skulls of the two presidential candidates we have to choose from this year.
RUSH: I have a fast fix for energy, a fast fix for the energy prices. There is no instant cure, as we know, for rising energy prices, but as your host, I, El Rushbo, have a plan to get on the right track sooner rather than later. As close to a quick fix as humanly possible. It all starts with our gas stations. We do have gas stations out there. And these gas stations pump regular gas, and they pump premium gas. Some of them pump diesel. On every pump, every pump that distributes regular gas, we post a picture of Harry Reid with the price appearing in his mouth. On every premium pump, we post a picture of Nancy Pelosi with the price upticking in her wonderful smile; that you could drive up to any station and ask for a tankful of Reid or you could ask for a tankful of Pelosi. We would explore, we would drill, we would refine faster than a liberal can attack a Republican.
You gas station guys, you want to turn the profit in your business? Go out and get some pictures of Reid and Pelosi, stick ’em on your pumps, put the price in there. And then when the self-serve people come up just make ’em say they want to fill up with Reid, fill up with Pelosi.