Am I the only one that finds billionaire/environmentalist Tom Steyer siding with Consumer Watchdog’s attack on the oil companies counter intuitive?

Consumer Watchdog and Steyer say the oil companies are manipulating production so Californians have to pay more for gasoline. They say it adds to the cost of gasoline for the consumer.

Steyer’s goal is to get people to reduce or perhaps stop entirely the use of fossil fuels. He’s a renewable energy advocate.  Shouldn’t he be thrilled that people must pay more for gasoline encouraging them to use less? Wouldn’t the laws of economics help his crusade to reduce fossil fuels and increase the use of renewable energy if people had to pay not the $3.44 per gallon average in California today but say, $15.44 a gallon; or $50.44 per gallon, for that matter?

Or is there another agenda here?

If the idea is to paint the oil companies as bad guys, gouging the public, that might come in handy if Steyer runs the campaign he has discussed to levy a tax on oil as it is removed from the ground. Then again such a tax would also raise the cost of gasoline at the pump for the average Californian.

California’s tax and regulation requirements for gasoline and reduced number of refineries are the chief reasons Californians pay so much more for gasoline than other parts of the country.

Yet, Steyer says cost is a concern for him. He told the L.A. Times that even the current cost of gasoline is a burden on working people commuting to work.

Well, I’m not a billionaire so maybe Mr. Steyer understands something about finances that escapes me–but in my two plus two world the economics of this situation do not add up.