Biden, Arabs and City Councils

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Saudi Arabia chose to reduce their oil production by 2 million barrels per day at a time when energy prices are fueling worldwide inflation. The move leads to higher prices for oil and Russia will be a big beneficiary.
The action has stirred talk in Congress of retaliation against Saudi Arabia, such as stopping arms sales and removing weapons already in the country.
I think our response is myopic and wrong.
We have been buying less oil from the Saudis as we increased our gas production and now give greater support to renewables.
The Saudis, in turn, have been moving closer to Russia and China.
Like Turkey, they play both sides. India does it, too, but we’re not thinking of retaliating against them.
I think we should take the long view on the Saudis’ behavior.
They are a repressive regime that shares much with Russia and China yet wants to stay open to the West. Let’s not shut the doors. Changes are happening in Saudi Arabia which are, gradually, likely to move the country even closer to the West.
Iran is the problem in the area. Presently there is much unrest and a push to take the clerics out of government. When that happens, there will be a significant realignment of forces in the region.
An American presence that is open and forgiving will be in a better position to influence events.
Not rejoining the Iran Nuclear deal will be a positive development.
I understand Biden’s worry that the effects of the reduction in oil production by the Saudis may have an impact in the upcoming mid term elections by further increasing inflation. But this may be underestimating the American electorate.
The war in Ukraine and the Russian retreat are huge accomplishments for the West and Biden deserves a great deal of credit for it. It is there in plain view.
Are democrats selling this success to undecided voters and enlightened Republicans?
Freedom demands sacrifices and Biden may need to remind voters of it.
Inflation will top off in the near future and ending the war will play a big role.
But to get there we must keep our support for Ukraine going strong.
While a large number of Republicans remain loyal to former president Trump, even though he attempted to deny Biden the presidency and reinstate himself for another term, enough Republicans realize the damage done to the country and that their party needs to repair itself by confronting its antidemocratic side.
Under Trump, Ukraine would have been in Putin’s hands long ago, for Trump would not have objected to the invasion.

As to City Councils.
On Monday, in Los Angeles, a tape recording emerged of a private meeting held a year ago involving three city council members and a labor union chief. During the meeting, disparaging racial remarks were made.
There has been an outcry and demands that the council members step down. The union chief has already done so.
Yesterday, President Biden added his voice to the demands for council members’ resignation.
I think this response is too meddlesome.
Race is a complicated issue. The world is going through a transition dealing with it. Europe is roiled by immigration and race is a big factor.
To expect purity from our elected officials or from any of us is not rational.
People deserve chances to rectify their behaviors.
Additionally, this is a matter for Angelenos to sort out.
Mr Biden’s focus should stay on the big picture.

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