Heard on NPR this morning:
1. On a report regarding Obama’s recent tour through the country touting the need to balance the budget fairly and encouraging development of green energy technologies, an energy student comments to the NPR reporter:
“Gas prices just keep going up and up and up; when’s it going to stop?”
Okay, first of all, there are those who believe that these little spikes aren’t really all that significant unless we panic about them, and that the biggest reason they cause such widespread reaction is because these signs are big and lit up and we watch the numbers spin while we gas up our car. Do you know if the milk you bought last week is more expensive than it was the week before? How much do you think a gallon of beer costs? And which do you think is easier to produce and deliver?
While consistently and dramatically elevated gas prices do hit us harder — affecting the profit margins of energy-dependent manufacturers, for example, or causing airlines to raise their rates by 50% and charge astronomical fees for luggage (adjustments which were not seen in reverse when gas prices went back down ~ 25% a year or more ago) — this little spike is probably not one of them.
Secondly, it’s a finite resource, and we pay the least for gas of any developed country, and probably less than some less-developed countries, so yes, the law of supply and demand would probably dictate that, as it becomes more scarce and harder to get to, it’s going to get more expensive. Stop whining and take a bus.
Which reminds me, why doesn’t this country do more about creating and using reliable public transportation? Millions of Europeans rarely drive their cars, and they all get where they need to go. They are also probably more healthy because they walk more, and less stressed because they have time to read a book or the paper, play Spider Solitaire on their iPhones, or post pithy insightful observations on Twitter while taking the train to work.
BUT — when the consumer is duped into paying more for gas because oil speculators and companies like Exxon want to take advantage of Middle-East unrest, that’s a different matter. When’s somebody going to do something about THAT?
Commenting on the same story is a young woman bemoaning the fact that gas prices are different in one state than they are in another, followed by a statement that the President should do something about that. Does she really not realize that states are allowed to tax gas at THEIR OWN RATES?
2. Regarding the upcoming, IN TWO YEARS (criminy), presidential election: Donald Trump is everywhere, and Sarah Palin has half a million Twitter followers.
He’s everywhere? With the hair? How can a man with this much money have this bad of hair? And if he either doesn’t have the sense to listen to people who tell him otherwise or is so intimidating no one dares, how good of a president could this man be, really?
Half a million? That’s 499,992 too many (I’m allowing for her immediate family, because they have to). Maybe she sounds less stupid when she Tweets, but I doubt it. The only positive outcome of Sarah Palin’s running for president is it gives Tina Fey more material.