Gas Prices and Hysteria

First, I want to make perfectly clear that this post is not a “toot my own horn” or “I told you so” post. This is a “please learn from the lessons of the past” post.

A few months ago, shortly after Hurricane Rita Ike*, gas prices were approaching (exceeding in some areas) $4.00 a gallon even though per barrel oil prices were beginning to decline.

At that time I distinctly remember an awful lot of people screaming hysterically about price gouging and how the oil companies were “taking advantage of the situation”.

Some of these cries were even coming from bloggers whom I would have never suspected would harbor such illusions.

I commented on a few of them and pointed out that the spike in gas prices was purely driven by supply and demand…that Rita Ike* had disrupted the supply of gasoline due to refinery shutdowns and such, so, even though oil prices were falling, gasoline was still in short supply.

It was counter-argued that the greedy oil companies wouldn’t lower gas prices even if the supply does come back up.

Have you looked at the pump prices lately?

The free market works. Please let it.

Calls for government intervention have historically NEVER fixed a market driven problem. Government intervention not only fails to achieve the desired result, but it inevitably results in even worse problems than otherwise would have occurred.

In the future, please leave the knee-jerk reactions to the leftists. We can do better than that.

*As The Pistolero gleefully pointed out in comments (I think you enjoyed that WAAY too much, my friend) I made a rather silly mistake regarding the name of the suspect in this case. Aaah…hurricanes all look the same to me anyway. Whatever the name of the one that hit Texas this year was.

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