-By Joshua Resnek
I gassed up my automobile in Chelsea at Premier Petrol on Broadway yesterday and paid $4.27 for a gallon of mid-grade gasoline.
Had I paid cash, it would have cost $4.15 a gallon at the same station.
On Everett Avenue at the Gibbs Station, the cost for a gallon of mid-grade was pennies less but still in the $4.00 range.
This time last year, the price for the same products were almost $2.00 a gallon lower.
Today, prices are rising by the hour and there appears to be no end in sight.
The same story is being told all over the nation as speculators drive up the price for a barrel of oil and our national leadership make claims there is nothing that can be done.
President Obama, like every president before him to the time of Jimmy Carter, told us he was asking the attorney general to make sure there is no price gouging and or illegal speculation or people and businesses doing that will be severely fined.
Americans filling their tanks with $4.00 per gallon gasoline do so without complaint.
If Americans resisted the rip-off they are being made to endure, they’d blow up four or five gasoline stations.
After such a show of anger at being ripped off, the leaders of our government – and maybe even some republicans led by the speaker of the House – would be compelled to do something about the situation.
Here we are, two months from summer when consumption will be higher and demand for fuel greater and we were hit last week with an .18-cent rise per gallon.
There are no shortages of gasoline anywhere in the United States or in Europe.
There are no massive declines shown in inventories here or in Europe.
There has been no disruption of supply even though Iraq is producing a fraction of what it used to produce and the same situation existing with Libya, whose production figures have been cut by 2/3.
Bottom line – the American consumer is being ripped off by oil speculators who have driven up the price for a barrel of oil artificially.
Take the speculators out of the equation and the price for oil would drop overnight to $70 a barrel.
Without speculation there can be no dramatic rise in the price for a barrel of oil.
With speculation, the sky is the limit.
Oil should be priced and controlled by the government the same way electrical companies are made to control the price they charge for the electricity that we use.
In other words, oil should no longer be traded as a commodity but rather as a utility.
But who’s going to listen to me or to Americans complain, in general?
Who in our government cares that the American consumer is being raped?
Virtually no one.
From the president down, no one.
What to do?
There is nothing that can be done, so we have been told.
But who in their right mind believes such rubbish?