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Magdalena
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14 Mar 2012, 3:51 pm

Yes, they are an important issue. More important of an issue than, I would argue, most of the social-political issues I hear about day by day (such as abortion, religious debates, how idiotic Santorum and Romney are, etc.).

But I must stress that the topic of this thread is not, "which general political issue is most important?"

I have heard from reliable sources that gas prices, at least where I live, are projected to reach $5+ this summer.

This is total insanity. We (the U.S.) subsidize this industry and this is how the citizens are thanked. I remember the days when less than $10 would fill my tank, even if I got gas in a major city (such as where I live).

I don't know about anyone else, but I was raised to believe that the all power ultimately lies with those who are governed. In light of this, the citizens have two major responsibilities: to demand ethical treatment, and to do everything necessarily to ensure that such ethical treatment occurs.

The U.S. is a country that drives. No, that does not make us bad people, and no, bikes are not a sufficient and practical mode of transportation, unless everywhere you need to go is within a distance whose length in miles can be counted on a single hand, which is not the case with most people.

Additionally, the idea of drastically adjusting one's lifestyle so that he or she bikes or walks everywhere, all to accommodate the gas companies' decision to resort to arbitrary force in order to preserve their ability to buy one more yacht, is insulting to everyone who is not a gas company high roller.

Time to change things.


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VIDEODROME
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14 Mar 2012, 3:58 pm

No doubt it's a problem. As a citizen though I'm honestly not sure where the specific cause is of the high gas prices. No matter how many times I hear a news story on it I don't feel it's been explained well.

Is it inflation?

Is it increased demand because China and other nations are consuming more energy in the world market?

Is it government policy affecting supply?



AstroGeek
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14 Mar 2012, 4:01 pm

I actually welcome high gas prices. It always spurs investment and research into renewable energy and does make people drive less, lowering CO2 emissions. Perhaps if they stay high long enough the government will invest in mass transit. (Wait, did I actually say that? Pffft! Who am I kidding?)



ruveyn
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14 Mar 2012, 4:17 pm

AstroGeek wrote:
I actually welcome high gas prices. It always spurs investment and research into renewable energy and does make people drive less, lowering CO2 emissions. Perhaps if they stay high long enough the government will invest in mass transit. (Wait, did I actually say that? Pffft! Who am I kidding?)


People who work for the government could not run a grocery store properly and you expect them to produce mass transit? Look at the mess the subways are in in NYC. With a fare of over two bucks they still run at a loss.

ruveyn



TM
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14 Mar 2012, 4:19 pm

VIDEODROME wrote:
No doubt it's a problem. As a citizen though I'm honestly not sure where the specific cause is of the high gas prices. No matter how many times I hear a news story on it I don't feel it's been explained well.

Is it inflation?

Is it increased demand because China and other nations are consuming more energy in the world market?

Is it government policy affecting supply?


I could give you an insanely long and complicated explanation but to sum it up without much verbosity.

- Potential war between Iran (a supplier of a lot of oil) and Israel that will most likely take place in the middle of the main oil supply area in the world.

- Increased lifting costs for a lot of oil companies (it costs more to get the oil out of the ground.)

- Increased demand from emerging markets, among others China with projections that point at a higher demand in the future.

- OPEC in control of much of the supply and regulating said supply in order to make as much money as possible from it.



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14 Mar 2012, 4:19 pm

Considering how much oil Canada has you'd think our gas prices would be reasonable. They aren't. The prices are completely whimsical and unrelated to reality


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simon_says
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14 Mar 2012, 4:21 pm

Tell Israel and Iran not to fight. Iran is prepared to retaliate in the Persian Gulf. Not good for, you know, oil tankers. That fear drives up prices.



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14 Mar 2012, 4:22 pm

Vigilans wrote:
Considering how much oil Canada has you'd think our gas prices would be reasonable. They aren't. The prices are completely whimsical and unrelated to reality


In what way are they not connected to reality?



TheDarkMage
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14 Mar 2012, 4:22 pm

sorry but i find it hard to have sympathy for you americans because we are paying nearly $10 a gallon


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snapcap
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14 Mar 2012, 4:23 pm

I bet if they lifted sanctions on Iran, gas prices wouldn't change because of it.



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14 Mar 2012, 4:30 pm

snapcap wrote:
I bet if they lifted sanctions on Iran, gas prices wouldn't change because of it.


Not currently considering Iran and Israel is about to have a fight and Iran has already said that they may elect to put mines in the Persian gulf, which is where oil tankers pick up oil produced in the middle east for transport.



VIDEODROME
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14 Mar 2012, 4:32 pm

Sometimes I think the Interstate highway was a bad idea. I wish all that money had expanded rail instead.



MissConstrue
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14 Mar 2012, 4:34 pm

Since I don't drive and there is no option for mass transportation like in many parts of the world including Europe, I guess I suffer for lack of empathy especially given the fact that our country has not suffered as much as other countries for the price.


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Oodain
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14 Mar 2012, 4:36 pm

meh,

better high prices now than a shortage before we become acustomed to alternatives


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14 Mar 2012, 4:38 pm

TheDarkMage wrote:
sorry but i find it hard to have sympathy for you americans because we are paying nearly $10 a gallon


This, essentially. Americans are complaining, but when I convert what we're paying and compare it to what they're paying, it's laughable.
At current prices, we pay approximately $9 a gallon for regular fuel at cheap places. It's also expected to reach a new high.
Many people here would probably kill someone for any kind of fuel at that expected 'high' price where you live.



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