$4 Gas – Who Hurts, Who Wins?

The buyers are hurting you’d say, and you’d be right. But oddly enough so are many of the sellers. Yep, the gas station owners. Some are hurting to the point of going out of business.

The why of this, revolves around a business model that sets it’s profit in cents per gallon (about 8 to 12) and is limited in range by the need to compete with the station across the way. Nothing will prompt a fill-up at the competition faster than a sign with a lower price per gallon.

The station owner sets a fixed per gallon profit after a quick gaze at nearby competitor pricing. The buyer charges his fill up to a credit card. The credit card company charges a fee of 2 or 3 percent of the purchase amount; that word ‘percent’ is the key.

As the price per gallon rises, the fee for processing the credit card payment rises. The 8 to 12 cent profit per gallon doesn’t float up with this tide of rising dollars. Fewer customers and increasing credit card fees means the seller is being squeezed into the red, right along with the gasoline buyer.

So if the average American is the loser, who exactly is winning here?

The extreme environmentalists, who insist on no drilling, nowhere, never. They win elitist bragging rights and that grand noble feeling. They are, after all, saving the planet for us.

The folks across the water who sell us all that oil. They win the money that continues to support restrictive closed societies and bankrolls dangerous radical groups.

The oil companies. They win continued high profits. They could help us a bit here, but their progressive globalist viewpoint insulates them from any empathy. (Editors note: Many say that a 8 to 9 percent profit margin is reasonable for oil companies. Another look can be the commodities market)

We might try a common sense approach and apply a simple, albeit not cool and trendy, principle – that old time moderation.

Drill our own resources and lower pricing through increased supply. Do it with respect for the environment, but not subjugation to the environment. Keep the planet clean, but keep the bureaucratic hoops, enabling nuclear power, drilling and refining, in the realm of practical reality.

Divert a healthy chunk of our huge budget to a national program for subsidizing the building of nuclear power plants and increased and accelerate research in the solar energy field.

Forget about SUV mileage and carbon exhalations, and changing light bulbs and suing OPEC.
Let’s, for once have a congressional response that doesn’t immediately prompt a snort.

Good gosh, what a stream of unthinking blather issues forth from that old swamp by the Potomac.