Left of Center: By Yukkione: The Price Of Gas
The Price Of Gas
Tuesday, April 18, 2006
Time : 8:56 AM

The other day I mentioned the ludicrous retirement package that Exxon chief Lee Raymond would be receiving. To get a $400 million package is just astounding to any reasonable person. This to a person who when asked about the crises of the price of fuel said "We're all in this together, everywhere in the world," Glad to see he's working so hard for us, you know .. coming together and all. So we're looking at $3 dollars a gallon here in the states, I know that compared to many parts of the world, that is cheap. However, we plan our family's and personal budgets based on relatively cheap fuel. Adjusted for inflation, prices were "above records reached during the oil shocks of the late 1970's and early 1980's. Prices have risen with crude oil climbing to $70 per barrel. According to Think Progress, some are trying to blame Ethenal.

BLAME ETHANOL: Last week, as members of Congress returned home for spring recess, Big Oil took the opportunity to pass along some misinformation about why it is not responsible for the high gas prices. In a letter circulated to every member of Congress, the American Petroleum Institute (the oil industry's main lobbying group) blamed current prices on ethanol. The gist of its argument: last year's energy bill ended an "oxygenate requirement" (oxygenates are fuel additives "that contain oxygen which can boost gasoline's octane quality, enhance combustion, and reduce exhaust emissions"). The oil industry had previously relied on a noxious chemical called MTBE to oxygenate its fuel. According to the letter, the end of the oxygenate requirement was "leading to the phase-out of MTBE" and the phase-in of ethanol. "While refiners are working day and night to meet this requirement," Big Oil told Congress, "they face complicated challenges in switching to ethanol, which has numerous logistical difficulties in its transport," and which is "currently more expensive than gasoline." The Wall Street Journal in turn protested the "Ethanol Tax," stating that today's higher prices are "the result of the ethanol love-fest that Congress engaged in last summer as part of its energy bill." NBC's Nightly News also featured a segment repeating the oil industry's line, backed up by analysis from the American Enterprise Institute, a conservative think-tank funded extensively by the oil and gas industry, and where Vice President Dick Cheney once served as a fellow.

Brazil has reached energy independence by using biofuels in combination with traditional fossil fuels. It's important to know that they started planning and acting twenty years ago. Seems to me if Brazil can have advanced long term plans that work, so should we. However if we keep letting people like Lee Raymond write our energy policy, we will never get a handle on our problems.

What really pisses me off about this is how even a small increase in gas prices affects families. My wife and I have three small boys. We drive a minivan and a mid sized sedan. Both are good with gas; one reason we choose them. However, one can't avoid driving, and with gas at three dollars a gallon, it all adds up. Spending more on gas means less of other things we want, and need. Things such as retirement/savings, school clothes, travel to visit relatives. The price of gas affects the price of milk and other items we need. Unlike many families that have two working parents, we choose to have one of us stay home and parent our kids. This means a lot of tight budgets, and skimping on some things that families with two working parents take for granted. The price one pays for not having someone else raise your kids. So gas is maybe 25 cents per gallon more.. who cares right? I do.

posted by Yukkione at 8:56 AM | Permalink |

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Comments for The Price Of Gas
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Yeah, those high prices don't stop at the pump. Everything we buy had to be transported from somewhere and those transporters are also paying at the pump and therefore raising their prices. I truly feel sorry for young families who are living pay check to pay check because these gas and other raised prices will not fit into their budgets. It's just one more burden for everyone to bear, well everyone but the ceo's of big Exxon.

I see alot of new people have hit this site in the last couple days. Thanks for stopping by. I post daily and hope to see your comments. good or bad.

I heard a financial analyst state that for every PENNY gas goes up, that it yanks a billion bucks out of the economy..sickening.

I know how you feel. We have three kids and are miles out of town. My husband commutes about forty minutes each way to work... it does add up.

Around the time of the Dubai ports deal, there was press about Carlyle group and others leaving the oil/gas business. Oil isn't a renewable resource, and our supply keeps getting lower. The price is going to continue going up.

Ethanol isn't the enemy, but as Brazil has proved, it is a very viable alternative. I've been meaning to find out if they have ethanol up in Portland (where we're moving). If they do, I may sell my Jeep and get a flex-fuel car. They have cheap technology that tells the engine the mix of gasoline and ethanol in the engine, and adjusts automatically. It seems the most obvious next step and is better for the environment.

One thing about flex fuel.. it's not that great a deal. You see our farmers are heavuily subsidised to grow corn. Thats why the market is flooded with corn syrup (cheap calories) Also the energy it takes to take a bare field, grow corn, harvest it, prosess it, is enormous. Nit the Boon Bush would have us believe.

The overall effect of gas prices is staggering. I feel for you Left of C... I think it is an honorable thing to do to stay home with the kids. I bet you're a very good parent...


Yeah...those oil guys just keep raking it in as fast as it jumps out of our pockets...money that is. Greed is a terrible thing. And our 'sweet admin' is loving the profits they are getting for themselves and their cronies. All whores!

Eh, don't worry about the kids. They'll all be dead. I tell you what, Jesus had BETTER come soon, with these guys in charge...

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