I’m going to sound so old when I admit this… but I remember the gas lines in the early 1970’s and hoping the tank didn’t run dry while you waited in line. My Dad (and others) would shut off the engine until it was time to move again. Now you have to understand that those were the days of roll-down windows, no air conditioning and AM radio… so the time in the back seat of that big gas guzzling GTO seemed endless. I was just a bored kid trying to keep cool, but I remember.
Today our vehicles might have better fuel economy than that GTO, but they still must have gas. The black gold that changed Jed Clampett’s life is something we have no choice but to pay for… and since we don’t have enough fuel of our own, we depend on foreign governments to sell what we need to us.
Any savvy businessman will tell you that’s a recipe for disaster. At least on the consumer side. For the oil guys it’s a bonanza they never want to end.
Which is why no one should be surprised that oil prices reached a new record high today — just over $122 a barrel. Prices at the pump are reported to average in the $3.60 range, with no end to rising prices in sight, and many predicting a $4 gallon before summer. A captive audience, we can watch helplessly, our politicians and presidential candidates can offer futile stabs at solutions, but in the end we have no choice but to pay whatever price the oil suppliers decide to charge.
Every business, no matter what you do or how small you are, is going to be uneffected by the rising costs of oil, if you haven’t been already. Prices to do business will go up — and so will the prices you’ll need to charge. (By the way… now would be a good time for that unknown genius with energy and ambition and a unique perspective to invent an alternative fuel that works.
In the meantime we’ll all have to adjust. Since our minivans and SUV’s aren’t all that much smaller (or more efficient) than the vehicles that occupied the 70’s gas lines, we are left mostly with the choice of…