Tuesday, April 25, 2006

It's about time!

FOXNews.com - Bush Announces Gas Price Investigation Ahead of Speech:
"President Bush, under pressure to do something about gasoline prices that are expected to stay high through the summer, has ordered an investigation into possible cheating in the markets.

During the last few days, Bush asked his Energy and Justice departments to open inquiries into whether the price of gasoline has been illegally manipulated, said White House press secretary Scott McClellan. Bush planned to announce the action Tuesday during a speech in Washington.

It's unclear what impact, if any, Bush's investigation would have on prices that are near $3 a gallon. Asked if Bush had any reason to suspect market manipulation, McClellan responded, 'Well, gas prices are high right now, and that's why you want to make sure there's not.'

Republicans who control Congress have become concerned that the high cost of filling up could become a problem for them in the November elections. Polls suggest that voters favor Democrats over Republicans on the issue, and Bush gets low marks for handling gasoline prices."
Even in New Jersey, prices have jumped to almost $3.00 a gallon. The American family feels the pinch the most; I don't even want to look at the credit cards that I use to pay the gas!

Perhaps the current prices simply reflect the current functioning of the market. If so, then the least the government could do is to institute some kind of commuter tax credit for drivers that need to drive daily.

On the other hand, the current prices may be the result of price-gouging and intentional underdevelopment of refinery capacity. Yes, I know environmentalists have lobbied against new refinaries, but let's be serious. If oil interests truly wanted them, would the EL truly stop them? Exactly.

If price gouging has occured, then the government needs to intervene. No one should subsidize a multi-billion dollar industry with inflated prices. Shareholders and corporate executives don't deserve illegitimate windfalls at the expense of hard-working families.

Find the solution, Mr. President. We're all counting on you!