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September 2008

The metric Disposable Energy was created to combine these graphs used to brief staffs for Senators McCain and Obama in July 2008:

The oil supply stopped growing in May 2005 and the economy started losing momentum. Shortly thereafter, gas prices started climbing. More and more people were forced to choose between paying for their commute and the home.

This DOE graph (not updated since 2004) is a great illustration of interaction between oil and paychecks. The dark blue line is steadily increasing disposable income. The red line is oil prices. The gap in the 1990's allowed people to risk their life's savings to buy a house. Since oil supplies stopped growing in May 2005, prices shot up to squeeze more and more people into foreclosure.

The $2,000 a year decrease in disposable income between 2000-2006 matches climbing foreclosures. Click on graphic to right to see cost by city. The Dallas Federal Reserve estimates the mortgage collapse cost the taxpayers $6 to $14 trillion.


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