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Why did gasoline prices go up


If everyone else in the world is paying a lot more for gas, why shouldn't Americans? Take your average spoiled American who blames the Arabs for raising the gas prices unfairly in order to make a bigger profit. It's true, gas prices have gone up by a lot in the last few months, but is that unfair? Prices still are a lot higher in Canada, Europe and just about any other developed nation, according to Mike Royko in the May 2, 1996 issue of the Chicago Tribune. Ted Z. Manuel in a letter entitled "Voice of the People" of the Chicago Tribune, said "Most anywhere in Europe, gas costs are from $3.00 to $5.00 per gallon. We scream when it hits a $1.35 to $1.75 a gallon, which if adjusted for inflation actually is cheaper than 25 years ago." It seems that Americans just think the world owes them a favor. Maybe it's time that they start playing fairly and stop feeling so sorry for themselves!!!

According to many articles, Americans have a lot more to be thankful for than they do to complain about. For one, cars use gas a lot more efficiently than they did in the past. According to Royko, "even today's luxury cars give you better gas mileage than the cheapest Chevies, Fords and Plymouths did not that long ago." What does this mean? This means that gas prices should logically go up. It's the basic law of supply and demand. It's true that more Americans are driving, but the gasoline suppliers still deserve to get paid fairly.

And what about inflation? Well, when you take inflation into account, the price for gasoline is less now than it was forty years ago. Just another example of how Americans are spoiled brats.

According to Charles Krauthhammer of the May 6, 1996 issue of the Washington Post, increases in gasoline prices aren't as simple as supply and demand. He feels that there are short run and long run reasons for the increasing prices. On the short run, we can thank an extra long winter for using up a lot of our gasoline reserves. For the long run, we can thank car loving American drivers, who like to go really fast and really far in their fancy sport cars that get terrible gas mileage.

Another reason for an increase in price, is that U.S. crude oil production is in serious decline. According to Krauthhammer, "in 1970, it was 9.6 million barrels a day. Today it is 6.5 million." The reason it's in serious decline is simple. We're using it up, and at increasingly fast rates. The more we use, the less there will be, so doesn't it make sense that we should pay more for something that is becoming extinct? According to Mary McCormick-Barger, in a Chicago Tribune article called Fuel's Paradise, "present estimates show that oil will be gone in 35 to 70 years." If we are not careful and don't find alternatives, none of us will be driving!!!

The gasoline issue is not cut and dried. Many Americans may blame it on money hungry Arabs and whine about having to pay more to fuel their expensive cars, but can we really feel sorry for them??? I myself am from Europe and think that people in America have it pretty good. If anything, maybe they should stop driving such expensive cars at the speeds that they do, and maybe take a bike trip every once in a while.


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