oh yeah, and the gas…

September 3, 2005 8:32pm
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LOL – I also wrote one about this oil nonsense, for anyone who’s interested. Maybe one of these days I’ll get that website done that I’ve been talking about… 😛

September 1, 2005

Against the Grain…
Friends Don’t Let Friends Pay High Oil Prices

by: Scott Sevener

Whew – it’s been a busy couple of weeks, hasn’t it?!

Let’s recap…last week, in a bold, yet not-really-all-that-surprising-for-his-kind of move, crazed evangelist Pat Robertson publicly declared that Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez should be assassinated because of his “dangerous liaisons” with anti-American nations. Hurricane Katrina devastated the City of New Orleans as a category four hurricane – with wind gusts exceeding 105 and storm surge amassing 20 feet – which has effectively put nearly a quarter of our country’s oil imports on-hold. And would you know it, analysts predict that gas prices will be well up above $3 / gallon – just in time for the Labor Day weekend! Now I’ve made it a point to avoid talking about this whole gas issue all summer, but if any, I think now would be a pretty good time to air some dirty laundry…

This whole craze about the big oil has just got to stop – it’s not good for economics, it’s not good for foreign policy, and it’s certainly not good for those of us who are getting gouged out through our ears at the pump week after grueling week! Anybody remember back in the days when gas was less than a buck a gallon?! I had a firebird during those times and could actually afford to fill her up with premium – the good stuff – and these days, I think we’d all be ecstatic just to see prices even fall in the general vicinity of the two dollar range. All the while, we continue to hear reports of gas prices in the tropics ranging anywhere from $0.12 – $0.25 a gallon…you know, it kind of makes you wonder just exactly what the United States of America is doing so different!

Funny how pretty much all of our problems these days seem to come back to the war in Iraq, isn’t it? It’s almost enough to make you wonder if the “crazy” 60% of us who don’t approve of what’s going on over there might actually be right after all – I know that I’ve wondered more than a couple of times this week if our situation might be a little better off had our President focused more on making friends than blowing them up. Remember, Hugo Chavez may be an enemy to the conservative republican party for having a difference of opinions, but he’s also made significant efforts to help out Jamaica and his other neighbors with their own looming gas prices – looking back through the books, the last noble thing that our country did was spend billions of dollars to help rebuild a couple countries overseas that we just finished leveling not five minutes prior…

It may seem like a moot point in this day and age, but I think that it’s high time that our country started thinking about itself for a change…and not in the greedy, capitalistic sense to which we’ve become accustomed ever so lately. From education to poverty to even our ever-rising oil prices, there are so many things here around home that need to be fixed – I can tell you right now that this is probably one of the biggest reasons why so many of us don’t understand our immense involvement in countries overseas. Sure, it’s great to be viewed as the country that spends billions of dollars to feed and better impoverished, third world nations…but what about our own people who are living on the streets and eating out of garbage cans on a daily basis? Having driven by homeless people sleeping at bus stops or rummaging through dumpsters nearly every day, it almost seems like a mockery to divert our assistance overseas when there are so many citizens right here in our own country that so desperately could use the help. Not to mention, of course, the fact that our federal assistance hasn’t exactly gone to benefit said third world nations for quite some time…

When it comes down to it, sadly, it’s all about the oil and as the fat cats at the top continue to get richer, all the while the rest of us are struggling to figure out where the extra money just to get us to work is going to come from – how this is any different at all from the other price gouging that is so rigorously shunned upon during times of crisis is beyond me. I guess it should come as no surprise that such practices are to the backs of our leaders when we’ve spent the last three years spending not only precious time and money, but not to mention people trying to lay claim to the goldmines, errr…I mean oilfields, over in the Middle East. It’s really pathetic because every year it becomes more and more apparent that a presidential term these days isn’t as much about dedicating yourself to building a better country for your fellow Americans as it is building a fatter nest egg for you and your business buddies while you’ve got a nice jumble of confusing jurisdiction to have your back. I can only imagine how much better of a state we might be in today if President Bush were to work with these corporations to give us a break and make things easier on us during economic hardships – it’s ludicrous to believe that our economy is going to get any better by jacking up prices and tipping the scales even further to the right!

But what are we to do in the meantime while we pay double or triple what we used to in filling up our motor vehicles? How about for starters we learn our lesson that this is what you get for re-electing an oil baron with more dirty ties than a downtown laundromat into the highest office that we have?! The nobility only goes so far until you realize that crusades around the world will only leave the castle at home in shambles, and it’s going to take a whole lot more to fix our broken country than it is to fix theirs. I’ll agree with the nay-sayers in citing that replacing our President isn’t going to take care of all of our problems, but as long as we’re paying more for a gallon of gas than we are for a gallon of milk, it’s a start…


In the meantime, though, I would suggest taking a gander at this place before heading out the door to fill up – could save you a few bucks:

http://www.tampagasprices.com

(and for the non-locals…)
http://www.gasbuddy.com

Good luck!

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