Thursday, July 3, 2008

Carpool, anyone?

I just paid $4.63 a gallon to fill up our minivan, which came to a grand total of $95.74 for a tank of gas. I know I shouldn't complain because other countries pay double what we pay. If they had increased the price slowly, maybe it wouldn't have been so bad, but the way it just skyrocketed, well, of course everyone is moaning and groaning about it.

According to Kevin's colleague who has a friend who owns an oil well, the increase in price goes almost entirely to profit. This guy says that a barrel of oil costs about $35 to produce, including taxes. Yet it's selling for about $150. And contrary to belief, there is plenty of oil out there. The "shortage" is intentional, because the rarer the commodity, the more expensive it is. This is very similar to the diamond cartel, except that you can avoid the diamond market if you wanted to.

I don't see how the price will decrease. Consumers boycotting and cutting back is not going to help that much. Do the oil people really care if 50 people pay $2 or 20 people pay $5? Either way, they get their money and then some, because most of the 50 people will just continue to pay. We can't cut back that much on oil. It's a basic necessity. And there's no way any sane business man would relinquish so much profit voluntarily .

So it's either the government stepping in to cap the price or we suck it up and pay. I would use the bus, but I'm not sure if I'm ready for a 3 hour ride to the grocery store with 4 little kids. I think the only feasible alternative available to us is to sue the oil companies. There must be someone out there suffering because of these gas prices, perhaps a mom who was assaulted because she refused to chauffeur her teenagers somewhere. Come on, people, speak up and file your claims! What better way to celebrate the 4th of July? It is the American way.

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