Are the ultra high gas prices hurting you?



cyclist2

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May 9, 2004
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leestevens said:
Just to chime in for Aust. I live in rural South Australia, THe price has just gone up to $1.52au/ L for petrol. In the nearest city (300 km away) the price reached $1.62au. The problem in the country here is once the price goes up it doesn't really go down again. Deisel is about $1.80/L, the problem with this is everything in Aus is transported by trucks, they then supposedly pass this on to their customers, which is then passed along again and being so far from a major centre it must be transported further.:rolleyes:
I ride to work aswell, 7km there 7km home, it may not be that much but i figure that i would be saving about $20 in petrol for the week. We used to drive to Adelaide once to twice per month which cost about $30 each way in petrol, now it is about $40 each way. We do not go as often. Now the government here is talking about knocking off about 4cents/litre, what a joke, 4c/l saves about $2.50 for us when we fill our car from empty to full, about 65L.
Public transport is not an option either, it is there but only goes to the next town twice a day. To catch a bus to Adelaide costs $40 anyway so i might aswell drive. Even the PT in Adelaide is terrible, i have tried before and cannot work it out. My father in law who lives in Adelaide used to catch buses into the city, now he rides a motorbike, a lot more convenient and a lot cheaper.
I guess we are like America, we like big gas guzzlers and we have to drive everywhere. I would like to see Australia change but i cannot see it happening for a long time. There is now a lot of talk about bio-fuels, but this creates as many problems as it solves. Then there is the hybrid car, but these still use petrol. Ohwell petrol will be $2/L soon then people will really be screaming. It does not bother me anymore, i just fill up and don't even look at the price. It will be what it will be.:)
no this side of the fence the state gov is closing down country rail sevices forcing, freight on to trucks :confused:
 

leestevens

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Dec 15, 2004
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cyclist2 said:
no this side of the fence the state gov is closing down country rail sevices forcing, freight on to trucks :confused:
Yeah, there is no rail here except the wheat train from one of our towns to the city. Many years ago (maybe twenty or so, i have only been living here for 4.5 years) there were trains from most major centres here to the city, they have all gone now. Atleast one train line was converted to a bike track which is about two km's long but cuts out the worst part of the highway at least.:)
 

Crankyfeet

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Jun 5, 2007
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Bro Deal said:
No. It's due to an overly optimistic faith in free markets that has morphed into disdain and often outrage at any government attempt to forward plan for the long term. It goes far beyond automobiles and petroleum. You can see it in many aspects of America. Citizens, businesses, and government are incapable of planning for anything beyond a time horizon of a year.
Interesting point I hadn't considered... that sounds generally correct. Though the US Federal and State governments have made large capital investments for the long term in highways, bridges, tunnels, dams, and ports.
 

jhuskey

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Oct 6, 2003
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You can compare the US to Europe in many ways but when it comes to transportation we have no infrastructure for mass transportation and the distances do not compare.
Driving across one state like Tennessee can take all day.
We rely on trucking to move almost all goods including food ,so the price of fuel is only a small part of the equations.
Food prices have gone up dramatically.
We are not prepared for this in many ways. I have not been affected unless you call irritation "affected".
 

TheDarkLord

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Dec 24, 2007
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jhuskey said:
You can compare the US to Europe in many ways but when it comes to transportation we have no infrastructure for mass transportation and the distances do not compare.
Driving across one state like Tennessee can take all day.
We rely on trucking to move almost all goods including food ,so the price of fuel is only a small part of the equations.
Food prices have gone up dramatically.
We are not prepared for this in many ways. I have not been affected unless you call irritation "affected".
Therein lies the problem IMO. For good or bad, you have developed infrastructure based on a model for individual rather than mass transportation, thereby making people more sensitive to the price of gas. If there was a good rail network, then a good chunk of freight can be moved by rail rather than by truck, which probably makes more economic sense when it comes to gas prices. The distance by itself shouldn't be a hindrance. There are other countries in the world where people travel thousands of km by rail; if the distance is too far, then there is always the option of flying.
 

Bro Deal

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Jun 26, 2006
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Crankyfeet said:
Interesting point I hadn't considered... that sounds generally correct. Though the US Federal and State governments have made large capital investments for the long term in highways, bridges, tunnels, dams, and ports.
Most of that was done in the 50s. That sector of the U.S. is woefully underfunded today. Currently the most infrastructure development you can hope for is slight relief from overuse problems.

To tie this back to the auto industry, the Detroit businesses have failed to produce fuel efficient small cars even though it was obvious that the future would require them and the health of their business would also require them. They preferred to make primitive body on frame SUVs, which they could sell at huge markups to dumb people who didn't realize they were buying tarted up trucks. The executives in Detroit laughed at Toyota and Honda when both introduced hybrids. The Big Three now face the real possibility of bankruptcy.

Citizens purchased large, fuel inefficient vehicles and McMansions that required long commutes to get to their jobs. Not only do the autos require lots of gasoline at ever higher prices, the large houses require significant fuel to heat or cool. To make matters worse, many of the highest growth areas of the U.S. have been in regions such as Las Vegas and Phoenix, where severe water problems are expected and the heat makes air conditioning mandatory. Again, all this was easily forseeable.

During this, Government completely abdicated its responsibility to look out for the long term well being of its citizens and society. Hence we have tards driving around in H2s, which aside from their environmental damage and resource consumption are a massive threat to anyone they crash into. We have cities like Phoenix that have been built so spread out that efficient public transportation is impossible and the heat is so bad during the summer months that pedestrian traffic practically requires a Camelbak--even if one could walk around the city. By allowing unfettered growth without thought about the future consequences, the government has guaranteed that there will be huge disruptions to american society when cheap energy goes the way of whale oil.

All this stems from an article of faith of capitalism that is just as fallacious as the bedrock of Marxism. Karl Marx thought that people would be willing to work hard for the benefit of their fellow comrades, much like a giant extended family or a small tribe. Obviously that did not work out so well. Capitalism rests upon a belief that people are rational and they will make rational decisions. I think what has been repeatedly demonstrated is that people in the aggregate are often not rational and most value near term benefits over long term consequences. This flaw in capitalism combined with a near disbelief in market failures, which is found in much of the american business class, has resulted in a very large bill that will be extremely painful to repay and looks to be coming due now.

Beyond autos, a similar argument could be made with many other facets of american society. The consumer credit market for example. The government, through lack of regulation, has allowed americans to live beyond their means for a very long time.
 

limerickman

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Jan 5, 2004
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In fairness to America, it appears that US consumption of oil has actually decreased in real terms since 2004, according to Newsnight last night.

Given that driving, accounts for most US oil consumption, it would appear that the average American has reduced their dependence on car usage (and thereby oil consumption).

Begs the question - if car usage is down - how are Americans getting from A to B????
 

jhuskey

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Oct 6, 2003
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I try and watch some good **** before I fill up. It gets me better in the mood to get screwed. :D
 

Pendejo

Member
Apr 8, 2006
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Bro Deal said:
Most of that was done in the 50s. That sector of the U.S. is woefully underfunded today. Currently the most infrastructure development you can hope for is slight relief from overuse problems.

To tie this back to the auto industry, the Detroit businesses have failed to produce fuel efficient small cars even though it was obvious that the future would require them and the health of their business would also require them. They preferred to make primitive body on frame SUVs, which they could sell at huge markups to dumb people who didn't realize they were buying tarted up trucks. The executives in Detroit laughed at Toyota and Honda when both introduced hybrids. The Big Three now face the real possibility of bankruptcy.

Citizens purchased large, fuel inefficient vehicles and McMansions that required long commutes to get to their jobs. Not only do the autos require lots of gasoline at ever higher prices, the large houses require significant fuel to heat or cool. To make matters worse, many of the highest growth areas of the U.S. have been in regions such as Las Vegas and Phoenix, where severe water problems are expected and the heat makes air conditioning mandatory. Again, all this was easily forseeable.

During this, Government completely abdicated its responsibility to look out for the long term well being of its citizens and society. Hence we have tards driving around in H2s, which aside from their environmental damage and resource consumption are a massive threat to anyone they crash into. We have cities like Phoenix that have been built so spread out that efficient public transportation is impossible and the heat is so bad during the summer months that pedestrian traffic practically requires a Camelbak--even if one could walk around the city. By allowing unfettered growth without thought about the future consequences, the government has guaranteed that there will be huge disruptions to american society when cheap energy goes the way of whale oil.

All this stems from an article of faith of capitalism that is just as fallacious as the bedrock of Marxism. Karl Marx thought that people would be willing to work hard for the benefit of their fellow comrades, much like a giant extended family or a small tribe. Obviously that did not work out so well. Capitalism rests upon a belief that people are rational and they will make rational decisions. I think what has been repeatedly demonstrated is that people in the aggregate are often not rational and most value near term benefits over long term consequences. This flaw in capitalism combined with a near disbelief in market failures, which is found in much of the american business class, has resulted in a very large bill that will be extremely painful to repay and looks to be coming due now.

Beyond autos, a similar argument could be made with many other facets of american society. The consumer credit market for example. The government, through lack of regulation, has allowed americans to live beyond their means for a very long time.
** Well said, Bro. What has ruined this country is the reduction of our value system to one simple element: profit. Because of this our culture sucks, our educational system sucks, and our government sucks. And a large percentage of our population is too ignorant to realize it.
 

bigpedaler

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Feb 10, 2007
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The higher gas prices have not DIRECTLY affected me for about four years, as that's how long it's been since I disposed of my last car. But the INDIRECT effect is there, in higher prices for everything!

I had people looking at me funny when gas was $1.25, and I was riding in Dec./Jan.; when it hit $1.80, there were some more unerstanding expressions, but still a fair amount of road rage aimed at me. When it hit $2.50, about the same time a news article came out in our local paper about utility cycling, the road rage seemed to evaporate.

Now gas is hovering around $4, and there is serious discussion about the potential in the near future for bike-jackings; I hear comments daily about how smart I am to ride (never from the SUV drivers, though,...hmmm). Since the weather is finally beginning to break here, too, the # of buzzes have gone back up; I have to consider my locale in town before I fire off at a driver, though -- gangstas like tinted-window SUV's, and gangs are getting more active here this year (9 homicides in 6 days a short time ago).

The times, they are a'changin'....
 

reub2000

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Jul 10, 2007
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The US has a very extensive freight rail network. I get the feeling that a ton of freight is being transported by the rails. The railroads are making big bucks, and passanger trains are frequenly delayed because of freight traffic.

The real problem is that many expressways are free. Drivers don't have to pay for the infrastructure that they need.
 

Crankyfeet

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Jun 5, 2007
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One of the big issues here is the low US personal savings rate. The fact that many people in the US are financially geared and maxed out to such an extent that an extra $2,000 a year needed for gas is going to seriously cripple a lot of people. If you added $2000 a year of extra expenses to the average person living in Asia... it would mean their annual savings would go down like 20%.

American culture (IMHO... as a generalization) encourages consumerism and materialism and discourages savings. A lot of people here value getting the best house, car, etc. etc. that their means often can't afford. Consequently when their is an upward move in inflation or interest rates... it has a leveraged detrimental effect on a lot of people. There is no financial buffer in a lot of household budgets for any adverse swings in fortune.

The thing that really irritates me is when people blame oil companies for high gas prices and profiteering. Oil companies don't "set" the price of oil. The price of oil is set by global market forces and if anyone could influence it... it would be the OPEC cartel.

If oil companies could affect the price... they wouldn't have let it hang around $12-$25 a barrel for most of the late 80's and 90's.
 

gemship

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Sep 19, 2006
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alienator said:
Hearing Americans say "ultra high gas prices" is a laugh. It's about time the American "entitlement" to cheap gas ends.

I don't know but something here smells fishy
 

FasterthanU

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Jun 29, 2004
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Canzures said:
the gas prices are definatelhy hurting me...I have to work overtime just to makeup for the higher prices which the inflated prices of food, clothing, entertainment expense...

gas prices here in the DC area has now reached the $4 threshold for regular this past week and diesel for my work truck is $4.99. I'm sure its just going to increase as the summer drags on.

I've rediscovered cycing recently and have been an irregular mtbiker for the last 4 years, but the gas prices are preventing me from going to the trails that requires driving more than 20 miles. Also I have made an effort to commute by bicycle this past week and purchased a road bike for the 12 mile one way ride to work and made my first commute to work by bike this past saturday and hope to do it on a regular basis.

Good for you Canzures. Do what it takes bro. -FTU
 

RedRider2009

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Nov 24, 2007
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TheDarkLord said:
It is around 1.45 euros here PP. But the problem is that Americans have subscribed to a model where they would rather drive from place A to place B (whether they are several tens/hundreds of miles apart or within the city) rather than use "public transport". Except for some parts, there is really no train network worth speaking about.

Also, you know the American mentality of "we have to change the world to suit us" rather than "we have to change ourselves to adapt to the changing world". ;) :p (btw, for the Americans reading this, this is partly a joke, but I think it is partly true as well).
Unfortunately, you are completely true, there are so many fat and lazy people here whose lives would be ended if they didn't have their cars to get them from one place to another...most people here refuse to even consider alternative transportation methods. Riding 5 miles isn't bad...they just need to get their heads out of their asses

Just a random question here: Have cab fares risen immensely?
 

Canzures

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Nov 16, 2003
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in the dc area they have added a fuel surcharge and now require cabs to install meters like in NYC.
 

luvmom

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Jan 29, 2008
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Gas prices have to touch everybody. Product delivery in every shape and form has become more expensive. The one woman coffee cart at work said they are charging her $2 to deliver the dozen and a half pastries daily. Northern California - best price gas is $4.09:eek:
 

FreeHueco

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Sep 9, 2003
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alienator said:
Hearing Americans say "ultra high gas prices" is a laugh. It's about time the American "entitlement" to cheap gas ends.


Hey, our gas is only cheaper than in Europe because our taxes are lower...

If gas here get to $6/gallon, it will be at $11 in Europe.

In 2007 I rode my bike 10,600 miles versus driving a bit over 6,000. Talk about saving money on gas by not driving! I figure that I saved about $946 dollars on my commutes last year by riding...
 

alienator

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Jun 10, 2004
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FreeHueco said:
Hey, our gas is only cheaper than in Europe because our taxes are lower...

If gas here get to $6/gallon, it will be at $11 in Europe.

That may be, but that doesn't say anything about the prevalent American attitude, the one that says, "Hey! We deserve cheap gas! It's our right!"

The reasons for the price of gasoline--taxes, oil prices--are not what people consider when they go to the pump: it's the price displayed on the pump that people get bent about.
 

FreeHueco

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Sep 9, 2003
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alienator said:
That may be, but that doesn't say anything about the prevalent American attitude, the one that says, "Hey! We deserve cheap gas! It's our right!"

The reasons for the price of gasoline--taxes, oil prices--are not what people consider when they go to the pump: it's the price displayed on the pump that people get bent about.


If all people want is cheap gas they should move to Venezuela. Then they could have all the gas they want to burn and be ruled by a madman...
 

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