Ford to stop selling cars

Sounds ridiculous, doesn’t it? Well, it’s equally ridiculous to fret about the supply of oil coming from the Middle East stopping anytime soon.

As Michael Lynch writes in a great new column, “For Saudi Arabia, Iran, Iraq, or Kuwait to give up pumping oil would be the equivalent of Microsoft boycotting the software business.”

A perfect example of this phenomenon is the Venezuelan revolution to overthrow anti-trade president Hugo Chavez. While there were many factors involved in his ouster, his using the national oil company as a tool for political manipulation — denying much-needed revenue to that country’s poor people — was certainly a big one. A political leader may get away with oil boycotts for a while, but not for long.

In fact, the only thing that can really endanger U.S. access to Mideast oil — as I’ve said before — is heightened political tensions. You know, like threatening to invade a Middle Eastern country and overthrow its leader, or continuing to involve yourself in a territorial dispute that has no impact on your country’s security. Not that our country’s wise leaders would ever do anything like that.