Gas (not flatulence)

chevron_gas_price.jpgMy significant other came home today after having to fill the gas tank on her Honda Phantom 200. She complained, as well she should, that it cost her about 17 Singapore dollars or just over $2.00 per liter. That translates into about $5.80 US dollars per gallon.

This whole conversation took place while I was right in the middle of a new episode of House which was a little annoying but, being the cantankerous old bastard that I am and getting a little thirsty for a new blog subject, I decided to do a little digging – not in my ears and no, not in my nether regions, but on the internet.

Because the US is so extra special, its latest gas prices are plastered all over the news every day as if, you know, everyone in the world cares. Most recently we’ve been reading about gas prices approaching and even exceeding $3.00 a gallon. WOW!

Here’s some gas prices from other, less special parts of the world. These are as of March 17, 2008 and in US dollars.

Belgium – $8.56, France – $8.16, Germany – $8.53, Italy – $8.26, Netherlands – $9.14, UK – $8.07, US – $3.50

Fact is, drivers in nearly every country on earth pay way more for gasoline than do drivers in the richest country in the world, and yet Americans moan and groan and cry at their outrageous gasoline prices. And American  politicians hear these angry, eligible voters -feel their pain – and react as any sensible statesmen would. They make up a lie to get approval to invade a sovereign nation and steal its oil wealth in an effort to keep those gullibly stupid voters happy with manageable gas prices.

Notice I didn’t say LOWER gasoline prices. I said manageable gasoline prices. Managed by who? Why, Exxon and Chevron of course. Who else? 

And sure, a million civilians in that country and thousands of American troops are going to get killed and wounded in the process of stealing that oil. But that’s life in the big city.

And America? Everyday you prove that it is all A-OK with you. You have the new SUV and a thousand miles of open road ahead. What else matters?

Footnote: The preceding post was written after the second in a series of very rare, yet very good martinis. Forgiveness is devine.

Explore posts in the same categories: America, Life in the Big City, Lying Bastards, Politics

8 Comments on “Gas (not flatulence)”

  1. Buffalo Says:

    Before our first boot hit the ground in Iraq I was vocal with my disapproval and disagreement of the invasion. Nothing has happened during the ensuing years to cause me to alter my feelings.

    I have no idea why the administration felt it necessary to undertake this action. I have a difficult time believing it was for the purported, and false, information re the regime’s possession of WMD. Given the source of the information, and our ability to vette such info, it seems well withing the realm of possibility the reason was merely a pretext.

    Many claim, as do you, it was for the oil; possibly it was. The fact is that none of us “regular” folk know the why of it. We can see the catastrophic results of the invasion but we don’t know the reason. When the sun sets I doubt if the reason actually matters. It is what it is. At this point, even if it were “proven” that there was a noble and just cause to invade, the majority of America and the world wouldn’t believe it. I know I would have a difficult time buying into it.

    Here in this part of Canada gas is selling for $1.18 a litre which translates to $4.46 a gallon. Last time I talked to anyone in the states we’re running from a buck to a buck and a half more expensive per gallon. Compared to some of the EU countries we’re getting off cheaply.

    The thing is, the average Canadian and American often have to drive extreme distances to get from their necessary Point A to Point B.

    If my wife needs to see her doctor there is a 100K drive. I have friends in the states that drive 50 to 100 miles a day simply to get to and from work. A buddy of mine in Kansas, actually two of my buddies, drive over 200 miles, round trip, to visit their doctors. A trip to the grocery store can easily take 30 to 60 mile round trip.

    I’m not trying to imply everyone in Canada and America have to drive those distances, but a great many do.

    Does big brother oil have us by the stones? You bet they do. But what do we do about it?

  2. expatbrian Says:

    One reason people have to “drive” those long distances, expecially to and from work, is because either the public transportation system is very poor and unreliable and/or people refuse to use it. Americans love their cars and probably wouldn’t give them up though no matter how good the public trans was.

    Besides, distance travelled does not automatically translate into amount paid at the pump. I’m sure there are plenty of people in Europe who drive distances too. But they are paying more than twice what Americans pay.

    By the way, Venezuelans pay 19 cents a gallon. Saudis pay 45.

  3. Buffalo Says:

    In a country this size, that would be both the U.S. and Canada, you have a plethora of small towns – the town I’m in might have a population of 125 – and a whole lot of country. Mass transit isn’t remotely feasible. Some of the large cities have great mass transit. In other cities it is down right crappy.

    No, the distance driven has nothing to do with the price at the pump. It does mean that the escalating gas prices are making it very difficult for those on a fixed income and the less affluent wage earners.

    No, I wouldn’t willing take mass transit. I’m self-centered. When I want to go, it’s time to go. When I want to come back, it’s time to head back. On top of that I don’t like being in that close proximity to people. I stay out of crowds too.

    And you know, Brian, none of that really matters. The fact is the oil companies are gouging the customer. There is absolutely no competition between the various companies. The prices are fixed. There is absolutely no reason the prices anywhere should be as high as they are. It is unbridled corporate greed.

    And the gas jumped to 1.22 a litre this afternoon.

  4. expatbrian Says:

    Yup, agreed, Buf. But I gotta say, I was from San Jose, a city of about 850,000 and surrounded by other cities back to back. The bus system sucked but the rapid transit trains went straight to Silicon Valley where a lot of people worked. Think they took that cheap train? No, not a chance. You can’t get those folks out of their cars.

  5. Shifta Says:

    I’m writing you from Italy.
    Price of either fuel and diesel are insane high. Ofc we got some stupid taxes on that, but still. And about public transportations, we still need cars to cover long distance as i cant say we r best place in the world for public transportations.

    But also, i was reading today a financial daily article about Lexus Hybrid models sales in Eu area first 3 months comparison:
    ’07: +2,71%
    ’08: +5,48%
    I wud love if all the world could force cars builders to use cleaner and oil free engines.
    Anyway, cars drink less oils than, f.e., heating/energy prod./industriest.

    A great thing would be if in the end USA would agree with Kyoto.
    From outside, it seems that J double is just thinking on short terms. Becaus if he starts think on long term, well, he may realize hes driving the world on being fucked up.

    “God isnt sponsor of any flag: stop say – God bless our soldiers -. He just wont”

  6. expatbrian Says:

    Kyoto is expiring so it no longer matters what happens with that. The Bali conferences were supposed to come up with a replacement protocol. Bush isn’t smart enough to think long term unless it benefits the super rich in the US. He couldn’t care less about anyone else.

  7. Shifta Says:

    the first commitment period is 2008-2012…so he’s still in time to turn off some heating/pollutions:D

  8. expatbrian Says:

    I forgot to say “welcome” Shifta. The US has no intention of changing the status quo when it comes to energy use. That is why we invade oil rich nations – so we can control and thus consume more oil products. And we want to get it first and take more than our share as we always do. As long as super powerful and rich American industries control our government, no one is safe.

    Once all the nations of the middle east, Africa and Asia have been exploited, don’t be surprised if Europe is next. Friendship stops at the gas pump. If we need your share, you’ll have to fight to keep it.

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