Oil, Hard Power and U.S. Hegemony

Joshua Nelson


In late 2014 and early 2015, the United States dramatically increased its presence in the oil market. This tremendous increase in production, which placed the United States ahead of every OPEC country besides Saudi Arabia, caused a global change in supply and demand that dropped the price of crude oil to $58 per barrel. This translated to an average gasoline price of $2.55 per gallon nationally on Dec. 15, 2014. The price drop reverberated throughout the global economy, affecting countries from Malaysia to Norway. In Venezuela, for example, it is estimated that a one dollar drop in the price of oil will cost the country approximately $770 million in annual revenue. The United States’ decision to act influenced the entire world, and this is no surprise – economic control is just one of the many facets of hard power and hegemony.

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5195/ppr.2015.58


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