Gasoline prices zip toward $3 mark

Gasoline prices zip toward $3 mark...
tinyurl.com/yks2azn

[quote="gilliam, post:1, topic:182721"]
Gasoline prices zip toward $3 mark...
tinyurl.com/yks2azn

[/quote]

Prices rose 1.4 cents overnight to $2.749 per gallon, according to auto club AAA, Wright Express and Oil Price Information Service. Prices have climbed 8.4 cents a gallon in the past week and are 95.5 cents higher than a year ago.

Note the many, many articles accusing Obama and the Democrats in Congress of causing this to happen because of their links to Big Oil, and the outrage directed toward them calling for a solution. :rolleyes:

This isn't entirely a bad thing. Too bad it is driven by rising crude prices rather than an increased gas tax. Bob Lutz of GM recently made a point I've been making for a year now: we NEED higher, but stable gas prices in the USA. The fluctuations are an economic disaster for everybody. What the feds ought to do is instantly add $0.25 to the gas tax and add a further $0.25/year for the next three years. Use the revenue to pay down the War debt (since it was fought to prevent Iraq from disrupting oil flows via WMD or other means). This would furthermore, give the federal government a weapon to fight apparent temporary surges in oil costs. (if a hurricane shut down production for 3 months, drop $0.50/gallon of the tax for that 3 months to counter the effects.)

This approach would be FAR more effective than CAFE type laws demanding carmakers produce certain mpg performance levels in reducing the USA's oil dependency.

[quote="gilliam, post:1, topic:182721"]
Gasoline prices zip toward $3 mark...
tinyurl.com/yks2azn

[/quote]

Our price (Ausralia) is around $1.30 a litre, which would translate to around $6.00 per gallon, so I can't say I feel particularly sorry for you. It's a lot higher in many other places.

Personally I sometimes wonder about the logic of wanting cheap fuel. All it does is encourage people to waste it. I see so many people driving around now in four wheel drives, and most of them don't need them. It's just a social status thing.

And if there's one thing that's not going to happen, it's cheaper petrol (or gasoline as you call it). There is a diminishing supply, so there can only be one direction for fuel prices.

Up.

So, it wouldn’t bother you Aussies if it went to $2/litre in one year’s time? That is the equivalent increase from a percentage standpoint. I agree that you pay too much in petrol costs due to taxation, but increases still have an impact on people’s budgets and the economy.

I have to strenuously disagree with those of you who are calling for higher energy prices. No good can come from that. None. Higher fuel prices make everybody poorer. You will have less money to spend as your own energy costs rise, and the prices for everything you buy rise too. Now, on the one hand, some good things might result from a broader sense of austerity and thrift such a move might compel. But on the other hand, the millions of people in this world who are already living on razor thin margins will do all the real suffering.

A coherent, wise energy policy is to provide abundant energy as cheaply and efficiently as possible to consumers and producers. That is a recipe for growth and health. To do otherwise is a recipe for stagnation and miseries.

Two years ago in the United States we were on the verge of making a breakthrough on energy policy. We seemed to have a chance for the first time in a long time at getting some sensible things done at long last. We were going to expand drilling and exporation for oil, renew long stalled nuclear operations, take advantage of massive new finds in natural gas, invest in upgrading decaying power grids, etc. All that stopped. Very soon the price of gas may be up to $5 a gallon in the US. What will that be in Australia? $10-12 per gallon? That's good news?

No, it is not. This spells a lot of misery for a lot of folks, many of whom will be wondering what we were doing during to improve our energy situation of the past year or so when prices slacked a bit and gave us a lull in demand. The answer to that is: nothing. Not much at all. Well, that's too kind, to tell the truth. What we have been doing is trying to figure out how to raise costs for everybody, not lower them. Incredibly, this is exactly what we have been doing.

Look out. On that day when the pain really starts setting in, will the familiar refrain about Big Oil trying to screw everybody work? Will it work when people can remember who was urging higher energy costs for everybody along the way and handicapping everybody serious about doing something about it, and it was not Big Oil doing that, but you?

I haven’t seen prices below $3. per gallon in about a year. Locally, I’m paying $3.30-$3.40/gal

[quote="manualman, post:3, topic:182721"]
This isn't entirely a bad thing. Too bad it is driven by rising crude prices rather than an increased gas tax. Bob Lutz of GM recently made a point I've been making for a year now: we NEED higher, but stable gas prices in the USA. The fluctuations are an economic disaster for everybody. *What the feds ought to do is instantly add $0.25 to the gas tax and add a further $0.25/year for the next three years. * Use the revenue to pay down the War debt (since it was fought to prevent Iraq from disrupting oil flows via WMD or other means). This would furthermore, give the federal government a weapon to fight apparent temporary surges in oil costs. (if a hurricane shut down production for 3 months, drop $0.50/gallon of the tax for that 3 months to counter the effects.)

This approach would be FAR more effective than CAFE type laws demanding carmakers produce certain mpg performance levels in reducing the USA's oil dependency.

[/quote]

Pay down the "War debt"? Which war? We still have taxes in place that were enacted specifically to pay off the Spanish American War in 1898. To think the current rulers in America would do anything but spend more shows a level of naivety that defies explanation.

If you think 10% unemployment is bad, start adding to energy costs and see how fast it hits 12% or even 15%.

Naivete is ignoring reality in favor of a pipe dream. Printing phony money to spend on policies that artificially mask the REAL cost of oil dependency is naive. Do you REALLY think we can indefinately spend more in government programs than we take in? I'M naive!?!

The facts are that "cheap" oil requires ENORMOUS government expenditures in military and diplomatic initiatives. NOT including those costs in the price paid for oil and refined oil products is a departure from free market economics.

YES, high energy costs hurt. But we can't pretend that energy is cheap any longer by making our great grandchildren pay for the energy we are using today. That's a fool's path and it MUST end.

[quote="mystagogia, post:6, topic:182721"]
Two years ago in the United States we were on the verge of making a breakthrough on energy policy. We seemed to have a chance for the first time in a long time at getting some sensible things done at long last. We were going to expand drilling and exporation for oil, renew long stalled nuclear operations, take advantage of massive new finds in natural gas, invest in upgrading decaying power grids, etc. All that stopped. Very soon the price of gas may be up to $5 a gallon in the US. What will that be in Australia? $10-12 per gallon? That's good news?

[/quote]

Increasing or decreasing domestic production in the US will not have a major impact on world oil prices.

But it would have a huge impact on our trade deficit. If the US’s trade imbalance were erased or slightly reversed the economic impact would be massive at the personal, corporate and government levels in the form of employment and wages, earnings and tax collection.

[quote="SamH, post:11, topic:182721"]
But it would have a huge impact on our trade deficit. If the US's trade imbalance were erased or slightly reversed the economic impact would be massive at the personal, corporate and government levels in the form of employment and wages, earnings and tax collection.

[/quote]

I think that's true for the most part, although it doesn't have a lot to do with gas prices.

[quote="Digitonomy, post:12, topic:182721"]
I think that's true for the most part, although it doesn't have a lot to do with gas prices.

[/quote]

High gas prices won't hurt near as much with 3% unemployment as apposed to 15% unemployment and high inflation.

[quote="Digitonomy, post:10, topic:182721"]
Increasing or decreasing domestic production in the US will not have a major impact on world oil prices.

[/quote]

You're wrong. Not only will increasing our production affect world oil prices, simply the demonstration that we are serious about increasing our production affects world oil prices.

Alaska's petroleum production is enough of a threat that OPEC gets twitchy every time ANWR comes up in congress.

While it isn't enough to totally collapse OPEC, it would give the US a much bigger voice on Oil prices world wide, and could, in a scant 2 years, massively reduce foreign oil dependence.

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