Friday, May 30, 2008

I Wonder If They Have Had Second Thoughts

Most of us are quite unhappy with gas prices. They are hurting our chances of economic growth and are putting a damper on quite a few lives.

Some people however are not so unhappy as just a few years ago they were complaining that gas was too cheap and we were wasting it.

Here on the National Post (March 25, 2004)

I don't want to get into the science behind the Kyoto emissions treaty: The whole subject makes too many conservatives go nuts. But all the dissident climatologists in the world won't change the fact that cheaper-than-water gasoline is encouraging a lonely and repellent model of urban existence. Simply put, gas is too cheap for our own good.

CNN (1996)
At roughly a billion dollars a penny in annual revenue, a 50 cent gas tax would slice a quarter off our budget deficit by 2000, while still leaving prices 20% below their 1981 high and less than half what motorists abroad pay. The chief (and valid) objection to higher gas taxes is that they fall most heavily on those with less income. But relief for those at the bottom--say, by cuts in payroll taxes--could be enacted as well. The truth is that every tank of gas today contains fresh proof of the "consume now" ethic that pervades our culture. In 1991 Germans enacted with little fanfare a 60 cent gas tax to help rebuild the East. In 1993 Americans found 4 cents on top of $1.20-per-gallon gas almost too much to bear, even while we bequeath our children dirtier air, the continued risk of war over oil and a trillion dollars in fresh debt every four years. Now Dole's trying to get that nickel back for us. He ought to know better.

Then there's a chart on this blog. Note the name of the blog - - - says it all.

And get this!

This past week’s Memorial Day weekend traffic was only slightly less busy with leisure travel as 2006. At some point, price mechanisms will begin to change behavior. But at what point? If energy independence is crucial to national security, why isn't government increasing the pain at the pump? Sorry, Adam Smith, but where cars are concerned, Americans don’t behave rationally.

I could go on and on and on but I think I've made my point. Not everyone is unhappy with high gas prices, and it's not just the oil companies that are smiling.

2 Comments:

Blogger Gayle said...

Of course rich elitist tree-huggers don't care. It's not their life styles that are changing. It's not they who are worried about getting back and forth to work so they can pay the rent, the utilities, put food on the table and still have enough left over to buy the kiddies a birthday or Christmas present. Darned idiots!

Not that I have to personally worry about it either, but I honestly do care about those hard working people who do, unlike the nutjobs who run that website. GRRRR!

2:12 PM  
Anonymous Americaneocon said...

Demand for gas is inelastic, in the economists' jargon. People are going to fill up and go!!

7:56 PM  

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