We know that the high prices are partially supply and demand, price gouging (record profits for oil companies) and also piss poor planning but the government who is on bed with big business. The oil companies say they are only making a fair return, but it seems that a $300 million retirement package is a tad more than fair. The argument that they have to make money for their stockholders is a good one but aren't most of their stockholders in the top 5-10% of the income bracket ( the same ones who benefit most from the famous tax cuts, the product of Robin George, take from the middle and lower and give to the rich!!) I doubt that the guys who are worried about how to feed their families or fill their gas tanks are very concerned with the stock market or the futures market. Mostly I do not understand the whole supply/demand issue. If a gas station buys 5000 gallons of gas $10,000 and charges $2.50 a gallon for then the company is a more than fair profit. If a war breaks out in Iran or there is a supertanker fire, the price I paid for the gas in my pumps is still $10,000 even if the next load costs me $12,000. But as soon as the world price goes up the price at the pump goes up, sometimes hourly it seems, even though the price of the gas for the gas station did not change. It is not a question of whether it is price gouging, the question is how much we have to bend over before we either have a real energy plan that is like the Manhattan project for synthetic and alternative fuels and have a trade policy that actually benefits someone besides politicians, big business and the top 10% of the tax bracket.
I think its price gudging and Irack war all be blamed on BUSH no big surpprize there i guess I hate bush would it be against frihost ToS to have an anti bush site games jokes ect ?
I am sure the companies are squeezing as much as they can. Why would you be surprised at this? The single goal of a public company is to make money for share holders, with little care for anything else. I work for such a public company, small and young enough to have some ideals left, but in the end return on investment is all the board cares about.
Capitalism is promoted as an ideology rather than a way to structure the exchange of goods and services. It is generally percieved as good to check your ideals at the door.
I don't know how it works elsewhere, but there's no real regulation where I live, and the prices at the pump rise for no real or perceived reason at all. We've had a 20% price hike here in the last month, and its not supposed to get any better. It is gouging.
A couple of things to clear up....
First of all, most gas stations do not own the gas. They simply provide the service of delivering the gas to you. This means that they aren't the ones who set the prices. Gas stations are typically individually owned (franchised), so don't blame the gas station owner.
It's also normal for prices to go up in the Spring, and then back down some in the summer. This is because the refineries normally do their maintenance in the Spring.
Also condsider that there are far too few oil refineries (in the US), and the ones that we do have are far too old. This is largely due to environmentalists and the NIMBY effect, which combine to put a stranglehold on new construction of refineries.
It frustrates me to no end when people think that because some Exxon executive got a huge bonus, gas prices are going to go up.
I live in The Netherlands and with us the Oil price is the same as the gas price so if the Oil price goes up the gas price goes up as wel! So we have Double trouble!!!