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    Greg and Beth

    the political and personal musings of two
    mountaineers living in west-central Florida
     
    Greg on Politics(11): Energy Cost Comment
    Gregory Morris, 6/15/07 10:46:13 am
    People love to blame the oil companies for the cost of gasoline. I don't. I blame the government which adds a ridiculous tax to every gallon you buy. The federal government takes 18 cents and most states take around 21 cents. That means every time you fill up (let's say 15 gallons), you are paying six of those dollars to the government. Given gas prices around $3/gallon, you are paying around 13% in taxes! Oil companies may indeed be guilty of artificial price inflation, price gouging even... but you have to understand that they are not just selling a product that comes to them at the wave of a magic fairy wand. They invest millions and millions of dollars every year into research and exploration (not to mention techniques to make it burn cleaner), without which we'd have a lot less oil, and a lot higher prices. Oh, and look at the gasoline price in Europe. Are you really complaining about $3/gallon? With the huge amount of money that the government rakes in for every drop of gas in your car, you'd think there would be a huge return in terms of reinvestment in energy innovation. If we dropped gasoline taxes altogether, instead of paying $3/gallon at the pump, you'd be paying closer to $2.60. What is worse, even if the price of gas goes down, the government is taking the same amount of money. So back when gas was $1 per gallon, $0.40 of that was still tax!

    Electricity is cheap. Imagine how much it would cost if we didn't have (or stopped using) coal! Hippies love to advocate doing away with coal, but then they'll say that windmills are too ugly and they kill birds. We all know solar power doesn't work everywhere. So where should our energy come from? I agree that there are places we can cut back and/or become more efficient, that small amount of savings will soon be usurped by our continually growing demands. Anyone who advocates reducing the amount of coal we burn is in fact endorsing higher energy costs. Instead of demanding that we stop burning fossil fuels, people should be demanding that we launch a huge national initiative to produce cleaner and cheaper energy.

    Note: this is not meant to be scholarly work. This is simply my opinion. If I use someone else's ideas, I try to credit them where appropriate. I also reserve the right to change my opinion when provided with better information, as any half-intelligent person should do.

    [Comments are closed after a month.]

    < "Greg on Politics(10): Energy Policy"
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