I confess, I'm a loud-mouth critic of people who insist on driving heavy and dangerous trucks to the office or to do daily errands, but a guy who nevertheless owns a vehicle that gets, with a good tailwind, about one mile per gallon.
It's a boat, of course and these days I think carefully about where I'm going with it before I leave the dock. I probably don't use too much more than 500 gallons a year, which is still a whole lot less than I used to use as a commuter driving a small car. If gasoline rose to 5 or 6 or 7 dollars a gallon at the fuel docks, I probably wouldn't change the number of hours I put on the boat, but if I were driving to work, as many of you do, that 7500 pound, 8-12 mpg "SUV" or super heavy duty monster truck might just get traded for something less absurd.
So I have to make another confession: I secretly wish fuel prices would soar long enough to make urban hipsters go back to taking the bus or driving Fiat 500's, and suburbanites trade in their grotesque fashion statements for cars.
Of course the noises bubbling up from the bottom of the national cesspool have been blaming Barack Obama and "liberals" for those scary numbers that appear on gas station signs, as if it were the president or some government office that dictated prices on the free world market rather than the laws of supply and demand and the mechanisms of capitalism. I'm tempted to say that the self-appointed guardians of the free market either haven't the most elementary idea of how those markets work or perhaps are simply too dishonest to risk not blaming Obama for rising world demand. No sir, there's no pea under that particular walnut shell and if even a small proportion of Republicans had the mental wherewithal to deal with the notion that economic recovery means increased demand for resources, they might figure out that those screaming the loudest have a vested interest in a collapsing economy. As the infamous Rush once said: "I hope he fails."
So yes, some Republicans, some voices from the corporate owned media are also wishing for a big increase because the public is stupid enough, or so they hope, to believe that the "socialist" Obama is behind it all. You'll remember John McCain making that moronic accusation when gas prices soared under George Bush. No, he didn't blame Bush or the huge demand for fuel his wars gave us, he blamed Obama, because that's what Republicans do, they blame the other guy for their own actions; they blame the opposition for the workings of the natural forces of the same free markets they pretend to worship.
No, the old song is about the holy market and how all the ugly features of unrestrained capitalism like disregard for public safety and the powerlessness of an oppressed work force would wither away if we only let them drill for oil in your town's reservoir or chain your kids to a punch press the same way those Commies do, but the reality is that they have a very selective interest in capitalism and the high priests of 'enlightened self interest' are trying as hard as they can to take the enlightenment out of it.
So yes, rising energy costs sap the strength of the recovery and so that's just what a certain party wants so that they can go on pretending there is no recovery or that it would be a much better recovery if only they had someone like that Mad Monk Santorum in the White House. So maybe "jobs, jobs, jobs" is now last month's mantra because we're creating more jobs every week that were created under that 8 year Republican debacle. So it's time to turn on a dime and let's put on that Jumpin' Jack Flash disc 'cause now it's all gas, gas, gas.