Responses to Complaints About Gas Prices Going Up in USA

So many people on Facebook, NextDoor, etc. are griping about gas prices right now! Even some politicians are whining. Usually I keep my mouth shut but sometimes lately I respond.

• Supply and demand. People are traveling more because it’s summer. Also, the prices were ultra low for awhile because of the pandemic shutdowns.

• (To people blaming whoever is in office): Forced car ownership from petroleum-reliant street design & development patterns since the post-World War II era is a burden on the working classes, and on the public health of all of us. Design that virtually forces people into car ownership is a decades-old, dysfunctional experiment, for which we cannot foist the blame on any one person or party.

• My favorite way to save on gas is not own a car. When I occasionally rent a car, it doesn’t much matter to me if the price of gas is $4 or $2 or whatever — I actually barely notice. I rent supercompact high-mileage vehicles for the occasional (every few years lately) long trip. And once a year or so, I rent a pickup truck or box truck for a day, and use it to run a bunch of heavy errands such as buying trees or other large plants.

• For a good reality check: Check out gas prices in Europe, Japan, and other places outside the USA.

• I dream of the day when gas prices get so high that people decide they don’t need leafblowers or other noisy fussbudget lawn appliances.

• Nobody owes us artificially cheap fuel, or any other artificially cheap goods (the prices of which completely fail to reflect the environmental, social, and economic damage they cause all over the planet). Wake up America, the revolution will not be petro-subsidized!