General Question

SquirrelEStuff's avatar

If gas prices go back to between $1 and $2 a/gal, would anyone care about where they were for the past few years?

Asked by SquirrelEStuff (9171points) October 31st, 2008

Would you just be happy they are low again?
Would you question the reasons for why they were so high?
Would a put a total kabosh on pursuing alternative energies?

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

22 Answers

shilolo's avatar

This may be counter intuitive, but I hope they stay where they are. We’ve gotten too used to gas prices that are entirely too low, which propagated the idea that we could all buy gas guzzlers with impunity (and use resources at an astounding rate). I think that high prices will force us to review and revise our energy policy as a whole, which may be difficult in the short run but beneficial to the US and the world in the long run.

Snoopy's avatar

If?

I just paid $1.94/gallon. Whoo-hoo!!

I hope it doesn’t stop the seeking of alternative energy sources. Unofrtunately, I believe that the prices are just as likely to rise again as to fall further…

augustlan's avatar

I think it will be up to us to make sure we pursue alternative energy this time around. Back in the 70s it was talked about, but as soon as things improved it kind of dropped off the radar. This time, I will be among those pushing for it…even if things are just hunky-dorey.

Mizuki's avatar

As soon as the election is over, prices will rise again.

laureth's avatar

As long as gas prices are low, research on alternative energy is nixed. It’s a shame, because we’re going to need it someday, but people often seem not to care about life past the next economic quarter.

Sloane2024's avatar

@ Snoopy: WOW!! Where do you live?? if you don’t wanna post it, you can PM me.

Bluefreedom's avatar

I would just be pleased that the prices were so low again and that I was saving money. Beyond that, I wouldn’t overthink it because I know there would be more important events happening in my life that required my attention.

Zaku's avatar

Well, the people who got some of the billions of dollars in profit off the high prices, probably care.

I already questioned the reasons they were so high, or rather, I didn’t really have to, because I knew (i.e. I believed the various sources which indicated) it was essentially because the people and corporations which stood to profit could get away with it, that Iraq was invaded largely because Hussein was not playing along with allowing predictable oil prices, and so this was cashing in on the seizure of that ability.

Alternative energy is more important than any of that, however. Compared to the importance of the world ecology, I’m not so concerned about economic injustices, though those are worth changing for their own sake.

jvgr's avatar

@laureth: “As long as gas prices are low, research on alternative energy is nixed. It’s a shame, because we’re going to need it someday, but people often seem not to care about life past the next economic quarter.”

BINGO

and politicians (as major recipients of the corporate oil largesse) are in this group.

galileogirl's avatar

I keep saying this-PAY ATTENTION!!

1. There was a booming market in oil futures last winter which was responsible for part of the increase in fuel prices. Speculators can do it again any time they want unless they are regulated.

2. The OPEC countries are talking about their loss of income as we cut back on consumption. They can cut back on production any time they want….
supply down = price up…DUH

wundayatta's avatar

Oil prices will remain soft as long as we are in recession, but when the economy returns to health, the prices will go back up.

What amazes me is that people are already forgetting about the prices. The demand for Ford F150 pickup trucks is so strong that Ford is recalling lots of workers. How fast is that!

Americans seem to have notoriously short memories. They’ll see gas prices as a blip, and go back to buying big, gas-guzzling cars. If the next president doesn’t act quickly, there will once again be no chance of mandating higher fuel efficience for cars sold in this oountry. Additionally, there will be no appetite for funding so-called alternative energy sources, or conservation efforts. Sigh.

Snoopy's avatar

@daloon I heard that same thing too (about Ford recalling workers at the F 150 plant). I doubt that the drop in gas prices in the last week caused that uptick. Too quick.

As an alternative reason, perhaps there are contractors buying 2008 F 150 trucks at model year end when they are cheaper and when prices have declined to get a tax break for 2008.

fireside's avatar

@ Daloon and Snoopy – I think a $10 million infusion from the government might have some influence on new hiring.

Snoopy's avatar

@fireside…but what does that have to do w/ the F 150 plant?

fireside's avatar

@Snoopy – “Absent a major private equity investment, Ford most likely will need a cash infusion from the U.S. Treasury or Congress to get through the next 12–18 months.”
Stock Analyst C. Leonard Bauer

That $10 milliion might not have anything to do with the F 150, but the fact that they got the funding is enough for the to decide to gamble on the hope that they will get more.

galileogirl's avatar

As far as contractors making new truck orders, maybe in OPEC countries not in the US. And I think they buy Japanese in Dubai and Bahrain. Could it possibly be govt orders?

Snoopy's avatar

@gg….why do you think contractors (construction workers) wouldn’t be buying F150s in the USA?

wundayatta's avatar

When I heard the story, probably on NPR, the reporter said it was due to lower gas prices. There wasn’t any sources offered for it, but then, few of the explanations of changes in stock prices or in the economy seem to be sourced. It’s mostly opinion, it seems to me.

I thought it would be too soon for demand to pick up on the pick-ups this soon, but nothing else makes sense. Ford probably doesn’t want to end up further in the red, so they must believe they can make a lot of moneyon F150s. Go figure.

galileogirl's avatar

They will be lucky to be able to buy groceries for a while. There won’t be a lot of private construction. Now there may be govt work on the horizon depending on who’s elected Tuesday.

jvgr's avatar

FYI: I just read an article in the “Globe and Mail” that reasoned the true price of oil should be in the $70/bbl range; about where it is now.

jholler's avatar

The entire country isn’t hurting, it seems to be mainly affecting the coastal areas, while the “heartland” ( areas which grow crops) are doing better. Gas is $1.99 here in Arkansas, and out county sales tax revenues are climbing steadily. Up 6.5% from this time last year. Two new major industrial plants announced this month for our city, bringing over 1000 new jobs to a city of just over 55,000. (one plant is a german windmill producer, so there’s your alternative energy!). Our housing market is stable, and the best answer I can give on the pickup trucks is that some things just can’t be done with a Prius. I have a Geo Tracker and my wife drives an Aveo, but I will always also have a full size 4wd pickup. It hauls wood, pulls my tractor, and gets the little cars out of the ditch in the winter.

jballou's avatar

He who ignores history is doomed to repeat it.

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