The Watchtower of Destruction: The Ferrett's Journal - Just A Quick Word
May 8th, 2008
11:03 am

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Just A Quick Word
Dear People Who Think The President Will Make Gas Cheaper:

One hates to inform you, but the President does not have a magic wand that he can wave to neutralize the laws of supply and demand. Gas is going to continue to be expensive because a) you schmucks refuse to stop driving everywhere, b) China and other nations are on the rise and want more gas of their own, and c) there is a limited supply of oil.

The President can't fucking fix this. He can do stupid shit like give you a "gas tax holiday" so you can save $30 over the course of a summer, which will cause us to drive more (burning up more of this limited supply of gas) and take away the money used to fund the road repairs, but that's a temporary solution designed to sucker in stupid people. Which you are.

You'd think you would have learned the lesson from Iraq: The President is not a magic being. The reason we got into so much trouble in Iraq is not because Bush isn't sufficiently magical to zap away the terrorists, but because he had poor planning. And lo! As it turns out, the actions of people in other countries can affect America, just like every other fucking country. Gas will most likely never be $2 again. As such, things aren't going to get slightly better for you until you stop fucking driving your big gas-sucking cars, learn to take public transportation when you can, and stop treating the President as though he's the goddamned Wizard of Oz.

Sincerely,
T.F.

(239 shouts of denial | Tell me I'm full of it)

Comments
 
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From:draxar
Date:May 8th, 2008 03:08 pm (UTC)
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How about Hancock for president? He can fly!
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From:nightskywarlock
Date:May 8th, 2008 03:10 pm (UTC)
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. He can do stupid shit [...] but that's a temporary solution designed to sucker in stupid people.

isn't american politics (and really, almost all democracy?) based on temporary/flawed solutions designed to sucker in stupid people?

From:drooling_ferret
Date:May 8th, 2008 07:52 pm (UTC)
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Better to say "almost all representative democracy as currently practiced"...
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From:jfargo
Date:May 8th, 2008 03:10 pm (UTC)
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He can do stupid shit like give you a "gas tax holiday" so you can save $30 over the course of a summer, which will cause us to drive more...

It sounds to me like you're listening to those elitist economists. Don't you know that listening to what well-studied and intelligent people have to say is out of style these days?

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From:twfarlan
Date:May 8th, 2008 03:10 pm (UTC)
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Alone, the office of the President cannot solve the problem of gasoline prices in the United States, agreed. (The office of the President will not do anything so long as the office holder belongs to a family whose money is partly based on oil, but that's another issue.) Congress in tandem with the Presidency, however, could do something about the prices being charged by oil companies that are posting record profits during a time of war and during a mounting energy crisis.
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From:losgunna
Date:May 8th, 2008 03:18 pm (UTC)
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those werethe precise points I was going to mention as well.

Kinda funny that these companies are doing so very well, isn't it? Wonder where all that extra cash is coming from? Plus all that is more cash into the Prez's pocket. Why in hell would he change that?
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From:plinko
Date:May 8th, 2008 03:13 pm (UTC)
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WRONG. The real solution is, obviously, to elect Gandalf as our next president.
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From:mightydoll
Date:May 8th, 2008 03:20 pm (UTC)
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ROFL!!!

you win
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From:wilhelmina_d
Date:May 8th, 2008 03:13 pm (UTC)
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AMEN!
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From:dnwq
Date:May 8th, 2008 03:15 pm (UTC)
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Aside: the President can't even save you $30, short of a government-imposed price fixing at the pump.

Demand for gas will rise too much for the tax cut to appreciably decrease prices.
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From:dnwq
Date:May 8th, 2008 03:16 pm (UTC)
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There's a relevant gem from that article, though:
This sounds cynical, but I’m just being honest. Politicians are constrained by public opinion. When the public rejects the mundane explanations for high gas prices — big boring facts like rapid Asian growth — politicians aren’t going to correct them. The best we can expect is for Washington to try to channel the public’s misconceptions in relatively harmless directions. We could do a lot worse than the gas tax holiday; in fact, we usually do.
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From:dr_nebula
Date:May 8th, 2008 03:16 pm (UTC)
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It's NOT 'supply and demand' that is driving the price up of late - but rather speculative buying forces. The 'true price' would be sub-3 dollars a gallon if it was all 'supply and demand'.
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From:mightydoll
Date:May 8th, 2008 03:19 pm (UTC)
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ermmm...

speculative buying forces = (eventually) buying of oil, which IS, in fact, supply and demand, even if it's not on the street level.
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From:mightydoll
Date:May 8th, 2008 03:17 pm (UTC)
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hear, FUCKING hear!
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From:thetathx1138
Date:May 8th, 2008 03:17 pm (UTC)
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My favorite response was somebody from Europe pointing out we STILL pay less than they do for gas.

And people look at me like I'm a freak when I tell them I have no desire for a car.
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From:the_magician
Date:May 8th, 2008 04:16 pm (UTC)
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It's about five pounds a gallon here (that's 10 dollars, though our gallons are bigger, so it's "only" $8 for a US gallon here in the UK).

Around 2/3rds of that is tax. About 15-20cents a gallon is the margin for the gas station, and a bunch of the rest is transport and refining. The actual amount of that $8/gallon price that is due to oil prices is quite small (the combined cost of transport, refining and the raw materials comes to around $1-$1.50 gallon)
http://www.petrolprices.com/price-of-petrol.html
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From:sacramentalist
Date:May 8th, 2008 03:17 pm (UTC)
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Didn't you hear? Ethanol will solve all our problems. And biodiesel, baby! We can still drive our big-ass SUVs an hour back and forth to work.

Except now beef will cost $20/lb
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From:thetathx1138
Date:May 8th, 2008 03:21 pm (UTC)
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So eat chicken. Beef's not really going to be a staple meat for much longer anyway.
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From:stripedsocks
Date:May 8th, 2008 03:19 pm (UTC)
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If only those arguments worked on my redneck inlaws! They just want the $30 and don't care about the ramifications. *headdesk*
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From:kmg_365
Date:May 8th, 2008 03:21 pm (UTC)
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Charles Krauthammer (and others) is of the opinion that gas prices should be higher, because that is what it would take to change behavior and consumption.
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From:rowena742
Date:May 8th, 2008 03:35 pm (UTC)
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It always scares me a little when I agree with Krauthammer. (At least, I think I do. Is his primary concern reducing dependence on foreign oil or the nonrenewability?)
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From:nedlum
Date:May 8th, 2008 03:23 pm (UTC)
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Wait. What the heck is the Federal Magic Wand budget going towards, then?
From:mojocat
Date:May 8th, 2008 03:50 pm (UTC)
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ahahahahaha
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From:tablesaw
Date:May 8th, 2008 03:30 pm (UTC)
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Again with the magic wand.
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From:samayam
Date:May 8th, 2008 03:54 pm (UTC)
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That's the awesome thing about Republican Talking Points like "I ain't got no magic wand." They're so easy to repeat and on a visceral level they almost sound reasonable until you actually think about them and realize that you're just spewing meaningless propaganda bites.

No there's no magic wand, but there's plenty of back room dealing and blind-eye-turning, and Fascinating Coincidences regarding the fluctuating price of gas and the fluctuating popularity of Teh Party.
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From:darqbeauty
Date:May 8th, 2008 03:34 pm (UTC)
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Having lived in Europe before I always laugh about how we Americans get such a sense of entitlement about how we have some God-given right to buy cheap and drive without thinking. I don't disagree that the markets aren't f-ed up, but we're not always using our heads.

I loved what you said about the prez. This is why I usually refer to the title as "figurehead". Great post!!
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From:jenbibi
Date:May 8th, 2008 03:48 pm (UTC)
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BRAVO!!!!

**claps**
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From:tormentedartist
Date:May 8th, 2008 03:48 pm (UTC)
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Clearly the only answer is alternate energy sources. And Ethanol isn't gonna help because if you think food prices are skyrocketing now, just wait until all of that corn is being used for fuel.

I think electric power cars will be the way to go. Just like in that game Car Wars...LOL.
From:(Anonymous)
Date:May 8th, 2008 07:08 pm (UTC)
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"Alternative" not "alternate".
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From:tintaglia30
Date:May 8th, 2008 03:51 pm (UTC)
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Okay, I may have disagreed with some stuff you've said in the past, but in this, I am with you 100%.
We don't have a car, but that doesn't mean we are not paying more for our food as the supermarkets pass on the cost of transporting the food to us. I'd really like people to step away from the drive everywhere in as big a car as we can get mentality. Unfortunately I don't see it happening until all the oil is actually gone. :(
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From:kidsis
Date:May 9th, 2008 02:45 pm (UTC)
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And there are alternate forms of transportation for those of us who live (or have lived) in the sticks. Seriously, of the 4 quickest ways for me to get to work, 3 of them can be shut down if it rains too much. On days like that, I PRAY for a Hummer so that I can get around safely.
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From:robyn_ma
Date:May 8th, 2008 03:54 pm (UTC)
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Wait, you mean Bush doesn't piss gasoline?
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From:sageautumn
Date:May 8th, 2008 10:49 pm (UTC)
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Even if he did... he's only one man.

*smirks*
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From:hartley
Date:May 8th, 2008 04:00 pm (UTC)

::CLAPS::

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Not to mention that any "gas tax holiday" will probably be negated by rising gas prices within a month anyway...

There is the problem of cities without decent public transportation, like Nashville, TN, my hometown.
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From:garybaldy
Date:May 9th, 2008 02:45 pm (UTC)

Re: ::CLAPS::

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Unfortunately in many places of the country. Like here in Atlanta. Public transit does not improve because of racism. The white folks in the suburbs do not want that "element" in their area.
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From:brujah
Date:May 8th, 2008 04:08 pm (UTC)

Fie pox hex doom!

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Feh.

We can send people to the moon and bring them back, we can replace body parts, we can grow frigging ears on the backs of mice, we can clone entire animals, we can even put little solar bots on Mars to drive around and snap photographs, but we can't seem to find an alternative to gasoline. I just want someone, somewhere, in a place of power to call BULLSHIT.

Because bullshit is bullshit.
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From:dr_pipe
Date:May 8th, 2008 08:19 pm (UTC)

Re: Fie pox hex doom!

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We have plenty of alternatives; we just need to use them
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From:faolan_phe0nix
Date:May 8th, 2008 04:15 pm (UTC)
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I don't know. Wasn't the Wizard of Oz supposed to be some all powerful head of the Emerald City with big flashy abilities, but then when they got in to see him it turned out he was just some shlub that couldn't do jack but demand some unreasonable task to give each of the 4 the things they basically already had to begin with?

Sounds like Bush to me.
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From:kisekinotenshi
Date:May 8th, 2008 04:18 pm (UTC)
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I just started driving in January of this year, so while I remember when prices were lower (I remember one time when it was less than 90 cents about ten years ago), I don't remember ever having been affected by them before. Of course, my car is a '92 Toyota Camry, I can drive 160 miles on less than half a tank (about eight gallons). And I practically never go anywhere.

We really need to be better about public transportation, though, I think. I remember being in Germany last summer and taking the buses everywhere, because they actually went all the places I needed to go. For the past four years I have had to rely on the buses in my college town (since I didn't have a car), and they go to about four places: the mall, Walmart, campus, and the big parking lot that is way off campus where all the freshmen are forced to park. Yeah, there are stops along the way, but those routes encompass less than half the town. I can't go to the yarn store that way, I can't go to a halfway decent grocery store that way, I can only go to Walmart and the mall. XP If they made more routes, I would definitely drive less. But as it is, I have to drive every time I want to go anywhere (I almost never go to the mall or Walmart). It sucks.
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From:spookykat
Date:May 8th, 2008 04:30 pm (UTC)
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I would love to stop driving. Honestly, it would make my life a lot easier. But uh, the bus doesn't come out to where I live. And subways? Only exist in Atlanta in the great state of Georgia. I drive a 13-gallon-tank Saturn...not exactly a gas-guzzler. The problem is that it now costs me $36.00 to fill up, and will prolly be around $40-45 by the end of the summer. I go to school for piano performance on a pretty much daily basis, and my school is an hour away. I fill up 3 times a week on average while school is going on. It's summer, so now, not so much. But during the school year, it costs me about $120 per week, at least...multiply that by 4 weeks, that's $480. I'm a student. I don't have that kind of cash to throw around, so I have a credit card, which contributes to the credit problem in this country. But honestly, I know that the President can't cure the gas-pump blues. But then, I honestly don't believe that driving less is a viable solution for me personally, where public transportation is nonexistant either. My gas miledge has gone from 116k when the semester began to 160k. I'm looking into Hybrids when I have to replace my current car.
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From:mzwyndi
Date:May 8th, 2008 04:59 pm (UTC)
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See, I'm with you on this one. Short of a horse, I'm sort of out of options for a non-gasoline form of transportation from the farm to the rural school where I work.
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