We made our way from Boston to Virginia last week in the gold caddy (the sophie mobile). We paid on an average of $2.80 a gallon for gas. It’s been cheaper in NJ than anywhere else so we only partially filled the tank on the Mass Pike. That got us to a pump after we got off the Jersey Turnpike and were on our way back from Cow Town. (See blob “If I Could Live Anywhere” for Cow Town briefing).
Today, as we made our way back from breakfast in DC we passed several of our local gas stations and gas was at $2.56. David says that he heard it would be near $2.00 very shortly. OK, so maybe I’m stupid but what has happened to cause gas prices to fall? Did people stop buying gas? Did truckers stop trucking? Did the Gulf recover? No, none of these things. But I do know why prices are dropping and I will share it with all our loyal blobbees. If we are the blobbers then you most be the blobbees. I’m being a blurting blobber again and I’m sorry.
But before I tell you why prices will drop, I will admit that I was a victim of the “get used to the seriously inflated prices and you will be grateful when they are only semi-seriously high. Here’s what I mean. When gas was at $2.10, I was unhappy but not a raving maniac. When it went to $2.50 it promoted a kind of social interaction at the pumps which I enjoyed and in which we would never have participated if it stayed at $2.10. While we were filling our tanks we actually talked to the person at the next pump. Sometimes it was just to bitch or to console, but on a few occasions it led to political discussion. I haven’t had political discussion in a gas station with strangers since I was the Field Coordinator of the Udall campaign in Massachusetts, so until the point at which I saw what it cost me to fill a tank—even my Mini—I was having a pretty good time. Then the gas went to $2.70 and finally to over $3 and it wasn’t as amusing. But I said to David, “The gas will drop because the oil company profits are obscene and they will start to consider the PR factor of looking like who they really are—gauging pigs. And besides now people are having to sacrifice not only vacations and new golf clubs, but food and medication. And you watch, when the prices drop from $3 to 2.70 or even $2.56, people will say; look how cheap gas is.” And I did say just that this morning. In fact, I was almost grateful for the new prices. Yet another victory for the oil barons.
I’m not one of those Democrats who think the rich are the enemy. I, like every person I have ever met, aspires to be rich. Everyone aspires to be successful and possibly very rich. The only difference between me and the oil companies is that (OK I’m not a white male) but I want people who aspire but are struggling to survive. To have the opportunity to do so without having to think about how they will pay for food to feed their children. Do you think that these people are grateful for gas at $2.56 instead of $3. I doubt it. Just FYI, I always thought it was political suicide for Democrats to assume voters wanted to be a part of that rhetoric which describes them ordinary or middle class. No one wants to be typical or average—I believe everyone wants to be special and successful.
And now what you have all been waiting for. The reason gas prices are falling. There are Primary elections next week and while they are only primaries, they will be an indication of what people think. Maybe even how they feel. The Republicans (most oil barons share that persuasion) are not going to allow the Democrats to pile on with issues; the war, the economy, and yes, gas prices. So gas prices are falling and will continue to fall until after the election in November. Once some of the friends of EXXON have declared victory, and that will only happen if gas prices drop, there will be a crisis or an emergency somewhere and prices will skyrocket again. Do you think I’m too cynical? Maybe, but I’m going to fill my gas tank now. We’re just sayin...