Yet, with all this abundance, the supply-and-demand cornerstone of the capitalist model doesn’t seem to be working correctly. A 1-cent increase in the price of a gallon of gasoline represents an $800 million revenue stream for the purveyor. In the past month, the price of a gallon of gas at the station has gone up 50 cents, and we’re told by the media that there’s no end in sight.
The economies in Europe and Asia are still contracting, and demand for crude is low there. The United States economy is still extremely fragile, and people are using less energy. It’s not even remotely a mystery that the U.S. public is being gouged for the price of a commodity that severely impacts the health and well-being of the American economy and way of life.
What is going on down in Washington, D.C.?
Joseph F. Doyle is a freelance writer living in Salem.