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Thread: GAS PRICES!!!!

  1. #73
    Capslock's Avatar
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    Lauderdale, in the midst of a gas price crisis, when the major oil companies are making bigger profits than any company in US history, that's simply gouging. Gas is an essential commodity and service. It's not like a D. capensis. There is a bit more responsibility on the part of big oil given that they peddle a commodity on which the entire country depends, and are essentially a monopoly (or close to it.) Imagine if they started to charge you a few bucks a gallon for tap water. I understand they're a business, but the bottom line is they've exploited the current crisis to make the biggest profit in business history.

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  2. #74
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    so? cant see how government inervention will help, made things worse in the 70's. this country has bigger problems than high oil prices unfortunatly the high oil prices are taking the spot light away from these. gas costs more in Europe than here, while thats mostly taxes it doesnt get passed the point that its still money coming out of the individuals pocket. high gas costs are pretty far down on my lists of worrys cause it will balance itself out in another year or two.

    if yah want cheap gas i hear its $0.17 a gallon in Venezuala
    cervid serial killer
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    I didn't get stimulated but he kept his promise on change, that's about all I got left!
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  3. #75

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    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] ]No I do not see how that is gouging. Perhaps you did not read the formula that some one else posted...Increased demand + less supply = rising prices. That is a basic, indisputable fact of business.
    See, I think there are two issues in that, though. One is the issue of scale: It's one thing, to use rattlermt's example, to make $20 of a D. capensis that cost you $3 to grow, it's another to make 20 billion dollars off a product that cost 3 billion to make. It's the same relative profit, but it's the absolute size of the numbers that makes people uncomfortable. If I made $2000 of overpriced D. capensis, you can see the whole 'good for me' angle, because that's a sum of money we can deal with, that people need (say, for 4 months of rent). But when it gets to astronomically high amounts in absolute terms, one has to wonder where 20 billion gets spent. Hell, I couldn't spend that in a year, and that's with all my crazy plans of robot squid armies to conquer earth.

    The other issue is one of necessity. Nobody *needs* a cape sundew, they merely want one, and free market systems are fine for that. But what about items that are necessities for daily life or close to it? People don't simply *want* oil, they *need* it. It fuels our cars, it heats our homes, it generates the vast bulk of our power, it's the source for most plastics and many chemicals vital for the manufacture of more complex chemicals, and it transports the goods we need (such as food and clothing). In such a case, is it ethical to charge as much as the market will bear, even knowing that you're getting wealthy off people who have no choice but to pay? While I'm not advocating that government control profits to be 'ethical', I am saying that the perception of businesses lining their pockets by profiting of something consumers have no choice but to buy is bound to generate resentment, justified or not.

    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] ]There are plenty of alternatives to foriegn oil out there but I don't see many people rising up and demanding, nuclear (Iran is trying nuclear and we get all upset.), wind, solar, oil shale, drilling in ANWAR, coal gassification etc...
    Actually, for the individual consumer, there *aren't* real alternatives. Nuclear power plants take years to build and have their own problems (like 'where do we put 200 barrels of material so toxic that simply being near it can kill you?'), and fusion has been 'ten years away' for the past 40 years. Solar cells have an efficiency of a mere 10%, and upping that requires making them out of gallium arsenide, which, as you can guess from the name, includes arsenic and lots of it. People object to wind because they don't want to see it (seriously, there's a plan right now to use wind off the US eastern seaboard, and that's the objection). Oil shale has the same problems as more traditional methods, and will only postpone the same crisis we already have, ditto for the ANWR. Coal is just a collosally bad idea from the get-go; it includes sulfur products that cannot be effectively removed and which cause acid rain (fine for our plants but not the rest of the ecosystem). Hydrogen is useless, merely a different storage method for the energy we get from oil or nuclear or however.

    More importantly, none of these are choices the individual consumer can make; they must wait, stuck with dependence on oil, until sufficient infrastructure exists for them to even be offered a choice.

    Take my situation; I think the use of coal for power is a *bad* idea, due to the toxic emissions. But the power company in my area uses coal-based power as one of it's sources. What real choice do I have? To not use electricity? I can reduce it, sure, but I still *have* to pay because I have no other option.

    Same thing with oil; there's no choice for most individual consumers. You either pay the outrageous price, or you never go anywhere outside of walking/biking distance. That's not capitalism, it's extortion.

    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] ]those choices may kill a spotted owl...but that sure beats walking to work.
    Would you say the same thing if our best solution was to build powerplants over the wild populations of cobra lilys, exterminating the wild population.

    Don't be so trivial about the value of a species. The western US has been that trivial about rattlesnakes for decades, and now they wonder what to do about the fact that the ever-expanding rodent population is carrying bubonic plague (yes, the stuff that wiped out half of Europe). Even from an economic perspective, you'd be amazed how much the most seemingly useless species actually contribute.

    Mokele
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  4. #76
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    Mokele, there in lies the problem, what your proposing is to have the government take over the oil companies rather than look for an alternate solution. solar power is really coming up, in alot of areas for under $20,000 you can make you house perform with almost zero outside power. hell 10 years down the road other than repairs and upkeep i will have paid for the system.

    i agree with you assesment with wind power, someplace in Idaho was going to build a wind farm. ppl said no cause of how it looked, never mind that the deer on that mostly barren platue would probably enjoy the extra shade that these would have created in the heat of the day.

    the guberment isnt able to take over something like this, let it play out, other options to $70 a barrel crude WILL appear before long. starting this summer the average Joe is going to start feeling the pinch. its nolonger just going to be the price at the pump thats rose. i figure starting here in a few months the price of most things are going to go up a decent notch. THATS when ppl are going to considerably cut down what they are buying at the pump and thats when Crude prices will probably drop to a more steady level, gas still wont be cheap but its probably going to level off at somewheres near $2.00-$2.25 a gallon and stay that way for quite awhile.

    our problem is that we are relying unsteady nations for our crude. Iran and Venezuala are not places i would want to be doing buisness with. this country is going to have to look at and decide to adopt a different energy plan involving nuclear, solar, wind, E85 ect and getting away from foreign oil.

    oh and for those who think electric cas are the answer. until we get away from fossil fuels for a power grid they arent. plus the waste in the form of the dead batteries that will need to be replaced after 5 or 10 years ect if far worse than anything a coal power plany puts off in the same time period.
    cervid serial killer
    Know guns, know peace, know safety. No guns, no peace, no safety
    I didn't get stimulated but he kept his promise on change, that's about all I got left!
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  5. #77

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    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] ]Mokele, there in lies the problem, what your proposing is to have the government take over the oil companies rather than look for an alternate solution.
    Well, I'm not actually proposing that; government regulation/oversight is one thing, but control just takes things from monkeys in suits and gives it to the red-stapler brigade.

    Some governmental involvement in new power sources is essential, but mostly at the level of "We need to bury some cables here" rather than "we now own everything."

    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] ]solar power is really coming up, in alot of areas for under $20,000 you can make you house perform with almost zero outside power.
    Depends on the system it's powering. For a home, yes, but businesses or other situations often consume a lot more power. While I was in Guam, we were working out of a fieldstation that mostly ran off solar, with a generator to run the A/C. The problem was mixed-blessings: the near-equitorial sun gave lots of juice to the panels, but could also heat the building up to intolerable levels (110F inside) without the generator. On it's own, the solar couldn't generate anywhere near the power to cool the building.

    But that's just an aside; things are definitely getting more affordable, but $20k is still a lot.

    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] ]our problem is that we are relying unsteady nations for our crude. Iran and Venezuala are not places i would want to be doing buisness with. this country is going to have to look at and decide to adopt a different energy plan involving nuclear, solar, wind, E85 ect and getting away from foreign oil.
    My problem is, as a technocrat at heart, I keep looking at fusion with unwarranted optimism.

    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] ]oh and for those who think electric cas are the answer. until we get away from fossil fuels for a power grid they arent. plus the waste in the form of the dead batteries that will need to be replaced after 5 or 10 years ect if far worse than anything a coal power plany puts off in the same time period.
    Well, it all depends on where the electricity is coming from. As always, if only we had fusion...

    Also, hydrogen fuel-cells would eliminate the battery problem, serving as an alternate power storage mechanism. I've also heard rumors of slow-discharge capacitors from a friend who worked at TI for a bit, but that's still just a rumor.

    Mokele
    \"With malleus aforethought, mammals got an earful of their ancestor's jaw.\"
    --J. Burns, on the evolution of auditory ossicles.

  6. #78
    rattler's Avatar
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    yes but if you start powering a bunch of homes with solar your going to start getting rid of the brown out problems so many face such as with southern Cali. if the cost for an average home right now is under $20,000(i think the cost for a house the size of mine is approx $16,000) if you start doing it on a mass production level the cost per unit will drop farther.

    i would love to see fusion power, just think how much harder they are going to be looking at with crude the way it is. i really think the government should just stay away from the oil companies cause i can honestly see them screwing things up for a 10 year period or longer when the whole thing should balance its self out in 2 years or so.

    i fully realize there are no right now answers but saying that nuclear, solar and wind arent viable options that shouldnt be implimented in the near future is just wrong. BTW you will never sell me on electric car, im having enough problems with all the extra electrical systems on the 2003 Ford truck the shop has. the fairly low tech 11 year old straight six in my Cherokee doesnt have near the problems as alot of the newer vehicles. and the problems it does occationally have dont cost $500 plus to fix. cant imagine a care thats run only on electrisity and computers
    cervid serial killer
    Know guns, know peace, know safety. No guns, no peace, no safety
    I didn't get stimulated but he kept his promise on change, that's about all I got left!
    http://www.wolfpointherald.com/--http://www.safety-brite.net/

  7. #79
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    I'm a bit confused by what I'm reading. The government ALREADY regulates the oil industry, but usually in ways that hurt us and help them. They just got $14 billion in tax breaks, for example, in the latest energy bill.

    Let me ask you, do you have a choice of power companies? Of course not. It's a monopoly. As such, it's subject to extensive government regulation. And as a necessary commodity, it's legitimate to have even more government regulation. This isn't "socialism" or anything, it's just obvious and mainstream regulation to protect Americans from abuse and exploitation.

    One proposal just rejected by our oil-man President was a windfall profits tax. I'd favor going much further and having price controls tied directly to the price of crude. Hell, I'd probably nationalize the oil industry if it were up to me. Basic energy services are necessary to everyone. And we shouldn't be subject to the outright greed and criminality of the energy industry. Out here in California we were subject to price fixing, artificial shortages, and subsequent contracts signed under artificial duress during our brown outs. Clearly there was way too little government regulation, and we ended up losing work time, paying quadruple and above the rational rates, and are locked into terrible long-term contracts with what are essentially criminals. This isn't "capitalism". It's exploitation!

    Capslock
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  8. #80

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    Here in philadelphia its like 3.01- 3.10. And then theres other gas stations that are like 3.49 but no one goes to them only if there car was in great need of gas. And if they did they would probably just get one gallon and drive to another station . LoL I am just so excited to get my license. not really
    ~Brandon~ aka ~Carnivorkid~
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