Home > American Society > California Gas Prices : The Fix Is On!

California Gas Prices : The Fix Is On!

To anyone who still believes in a competitive marketplace in America….please go fill up your gas tank today.

Yahoo Reports : Calif. gasoline prices hit all-time high – twice

The prices jumped by $0.16 per gallon The four-penny-per-gallon jump Sunday was less than Saturday’s increase, which was 12 cents.

The reason for the price jump was explained as : “The dramatic surge came after a power outage Monday at a Southern California refinery that reduced supply in an already fragile and volatile market, analysts said. The refinery came back online Friday and prices were expected to stabilize in the coming days.”

To anyone who believes that “supply and demand” are real market influences, this should be a wake up call. Supply and demand are as mythical as “the trickle down theory”. How is it that consumers and finance professionals alike can believe in these lies? Capitalism is a “win or lose” ideology. There is no respect, ethics, or morality. Corporations squeeze every dollar of profit they can without being sent to jail. Capitalism was best described in the Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl is Jack, “take what you can….give nothing back”.

Why do you still believe that there is a competitive market out there that is pushing to the lowest possible price point to win your business? Simple. You listen to all the large corporations telling you it is the international crude market that coasts you so much. It is very easy to blame the foreign country for making us pay so much for gas.

Nationwide Insurance Company believes the lie. They tell their customers: Common misconceptions about gasoline prices

Perhaps the biggest misconception about gasoline prices is that gas companies set them. However, since the companies own only about 5% of U.S. stations, their control over the price at the pump is minimal.

Then they go on to list all the foreign influences that really make gas prices so high….

Factors that influence gasoline prices

Supply of crude oil – Most crude oil that’s refined into gasoline is produced and sold by Oil Producing Exporting Countries – or OPEC. This cartel of 12 countries in Africa, the Middle East and South America uses a loose quota system to determine how much oil to produce and sell. One of OPEC’s goals is to stabilize oil prices by eliminating unnecessary fluctuations. However, its decisions about production, pricing and distribution affect the price of international oil – and, consequently, the price of gasoline.

Worldwide demand – The demand for crude oil in China, India and other developing countries has risen with their population, increased trade, growing internal markets and strong commodity prices. In less than five years, it is estimated that developing nations will account for nearly half of the global demand for oil, up from 36 percent in 1996.

Distribution network – Anything that interrupts the flow of petroleum through the distribution network can cause gas prices to rise, such as a natural disaster like Hurricane Katrina or political instability in major oil-producing countries like Venezuela, Iraq and Nigeria.

Value of the U.S. dollar – Oil is traded on the world market is U.S. dollars. When the value of the dollar declines in comparison to other major currencies, OPEC earns less per barrel of oil. To compensate, it may raise the price per barrel, thereby increasing the price of gasoline.

The market – One of the most complicated factors that affect gas prices is the oil trading market – actually, three different markets that all can play a role in the price of gasoline.

All you have to do to realize this is a complete lie is to ask any gas station manager / owner when you go to fill up your tank.

Here is one such story: Kelly Bosley, who manages Rutter’s, doesn’t even have to look across the highway to know when Sheetz changes its price for a gallon of gas. When Sheetz raises prices, her own pumps are busy. When Sheetz lowers prices, she has not a car in sight.

She calls Rutter’s headquarters to report the competition’s new price and wait for instructions.

“I call a lot of times and say, ‘They went down, hurry up! Hurry up! Call me! Call me!’ Or it could be where theirs goes up, and I’ll say, ‘Take your time! You know, I like being busy.’ But I have no control over that.”

You think you feel helpless at the pump?

Bosley makes a living selling gas — and even she has little control over what it costs.

The truth is that EVERY gas company wants to make as much profit on every gallon as possible. When shell, Texaco, BP, and the other fortune 500 companies raise their prices, everyone else follows. There is no concern for the consumer. When your tank is empty , you go to the gas station. Your need is time sensitive. They know you have to come back. They only care about being 1 penny cheaper than the station across the street.

This is “drug culture” capitalism. It is based on addiction. All the normal laws of capitalism no longer apply. There is no competition for low price. There is only competition for location and timing. The right location and open 24 hours a day. That is how you serve the addict.

So anyone who wants to believe that the gas prices in California rose because of a power outage at a refinery….go take another hit off your crack pipe. The power outage was a gift to the oil companies that will result in an increased profit of 100 million dollars. No benefit for the consumer. No competitive advantage for the consumer. Just a drug lord (oil company) who raised the street price of his drug (gasoline) temporarily on the basis of a rumor of a shortage.

But why talk about a “small scare” that makes the oil companies 100 million, when we can talk about the “big scare” that is making the oil companies trillions of dollars? Just one look at this graph and you get the idea clearly.

Since 0/11 they have quadrupled their profits. The exploration and drilling do not cost one penny more. The refining and transportation do not cost one penny more. Why are we paying more? Simple. It is a monopoly of a drug culture commodity. They are the “dealers” and we are the addicted users. Any questions?

Itia (abroad)

Categories: American Society
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