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The media spin isn't working...

by Edward ODaniel / September 4, 2005 4:28 AM PDT

too well as is becoming more apparent, despite their best efforts to blame it all on Bush, that Bush isn't the one to fault.


72% Say Gas Scalping Is Tied to Storm
Majority in Poll Blame Gouging on Government's Handling of Price Surge

By Richard Morin and Claudia Deane
Washington Post Staff Writers
Sunday, September 4, 2005; Page A27

An overwhelming majority of Americans believe oil and gas companies are gouging consumers in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina but offer mixed reviews of President Bush and the government's initial response to the deadly storm, according to the latest Washington Post-ABC News poll.

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Of course they believe that there is "gouging"...
by EdH / September 4, 2005 5:21 AM PDT

in spite of the fact that there's no credible evidence of it. High prices equal gouging in the minds of many.

Even now, by historic standards the prices aren't that high.

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george will in a recent newsweek said...
by grimgraphix / September 4, 2005 5:28 AM PDT

when the national average for gas reached $ 3.11 per gallon then it would surpass the original historical high set ( when ? I don't remember... sometime in the early eighties) adjusted for inflation and the present value of the dollar.

I don't know about you but we were paying $ 3.40 the other day. Isn't that high ?


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I wouldn't go by George Will
by EdH / September 4, 2005 6:06 AM PDT

I think he's wrong. Seems to me the correct figure is over $4. And don't forget, there's a problem with supply caused by the hurricane.

I paid $3.09 two days ago but maybe it's gone up since.

In any event, that is not evidence of "gouging".

Maybe I'll research it, but maybe you should since you seem to need some practice.

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oooh !
by grimgraphix / September 4, 2005 6:22 AM PDT

Dissed by the EdH...

no offense taken and I hope none given. I just had to say that.

As for George Will, I often think he is an idiot. I did report it as GW's reporting not my own. Besides, I did not say gouging I said high. I remember paying $ 1.59 per gallon less than a year ago and $ 2.55 last week. $ 3.39 on wednesday and back to $2.99 yesterday. It's ironic that gas that was refined 2 months ago and whole sale priced for less than $2.00 - ad 40 or 50 cents in taxes - fluctuates in price as much as it does. I'm a big believer in a free market as I am part owner in a business but as a former straight commission salesman, I also know when I'm being taken for a ride.

As for the research comment... check the other thread. I'm askin for help !!!


I don't claim to be brilliant... just really, really smart. LOL

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Seriously, it depends on how you work the numbers
by EdH / September 4, 2005 7:00 AM PDT
In reply to: oooh !

I have seen claims that you'd have to be paying as much as $6 to equal Oil Embargo prices and as low as $2.99 (which is not far off from where it is now). But I really see no evidence of "gouging". In view of Katrina it is natural that prices would spike.

Gas prices rely on things beyond what it cost when refined two weeks ago. One consideration (that has been mentioned before) is replacement costs. Panicked consumers trying to grab as much as they can before it runs out is another factor.

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I understand what your saying...
by grimgraphix / September 4, 2005 7:33 AM PDT

Government accounting... corporate accounting... historical accounting... can all come up with different numbers. The article from George Will was trying to make the case that things "historically" are better than they ever were. Ironically the same week stats came out making the case for a million more people living below the poverty level in america.
Of course this was all before NoLa so do we count the victims as part of that group now? I remember back in the eighties when Reagan (could have been Bush) "reformulated" the way unemployment was figured. We were in a mild recession and the official government stats suddenly discounted all the people who had run out their unemployment benefits as no longer unemployed because they were no longer getting unemployment. You know the term "Catch 52"? Anyway, I remember it vividly because I was one of the folk who magically became un-unemployed.

I'm no economist so I don't pretend be an expert on this issue but I do have a sense for historical trends and we have seen record profits year after year from energy related companies. Yet, year after year our infrastructure crumbles. Our present government has to pass a 100 million dollar energy bill to encourage the energy companies to rebuild their capital investments.

Does the government give me money when I put insulation in my attic ? Then why should we as taxpayers be giving money and tax breaks to a company on the back end... when we pay them on the front end for their services in the first place? I don't begrudge the gas station on the corner for trying to make a buck... I begrudge the almost free ride our present administration does give to corporate america. George Sr. came up with the term "VooDoo Economics"... was his criticism a lie ?

We are in for a long ride and we can cut gas costs by using so much or keep going back to the supplier like a junkie to a dealer. Supply vs. Demand... we only have to accept responsibility and demand accountability.

Am I wrong?

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(NT) (NT) sorry... Catch 22. LOL
by grimgraphix / September 4, 2005 7:35 AM PDT
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I must live in a cave...
by Angeline Booher / September 4, 2005 8:45 AM PDT

.... without any TV that I have been watching constantly....

But I have not heard any one blame President Bush!

I've heard criticisms of the Mayor of New Orleans, the Governor of Louisiana, FEMA, Homeland Security, and many decades of Congressional sessions. But not one of the President.

I did hear one report about the refineries having flooded giving pause to refineries being located on coast lines. Maybe that will be reconsidered when plans for New Orleans are finalized.

It has been reported for even before Katrina that hois popularity has fallen, but that is common for a lame duck president, especially with a war in progress.

I'm retired, so can schedule and bundle errands, etc., so the prices don't impact me as much as others. When winter comes, the coming huge increase in natural gas will.

Though I haven't been one of them, taxpayers haven't wanted to pay for serious alternatives, which would initally be very expensive. And many don't like the idea of conserving, So maybe the blame is on us.

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by marinetbryant / September 4, 2005 9:22 AM PDT

Could someone please explain how a barrel of oil can cost $70 when it's not even out of the ground yet. What is this pay for everything before you get it (cable, cell phone service, etc.)? Go free enterprise.

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I think...
by Angeline Booher / September 4, 2005 10:12 AM PDT
In reply to: gas-oil

.... it is because oil, sugar, and other commodities are sold as "futures", gambling on what the prices will be. Folks can lose their shirts in futures. (Did you see the movie, "Trading Places"?)

Dunno why some things are paid in advance. Maybe it's because some people don't pay.

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