Braxton Citizens' News, Opinion

Prices go up… but do they come down?

I get angry every time I think about the price of gasoline. And… you have no choice but to think about it… everyone is adding a “fuel sur-charge” to anything that requires transportation. Even our printer is adding an extra fee to bring us our newspapers. At least they are doing it the right way… they have a teared approach based on the cost of a gallon of gas. When the price goes up we pay a little more. When it goes down the fee is less. In fact, they even have a clause that when the price per gallon reaches a certain point, they will drop the sur-charge all together. While I can’t say I like it… at least the way they administer the fee is fair.

That can not be said in most instances. I saw the extra fees on products I received when gasoline was $2.00 a gallon. I have certainly come to realize that big oil will use any excuse to jump the price up a few cents. In fact, the Ukrainian/Russian War was a example. They said the war caused the price of crude oil to increase and that created big upward spikes in our cost of gasoline. We saw gasoline jump as much as 20 cents overnight when the price of crude broke $100 a barrel. Now that the costs have come down… prices at the pumps have fallen only a few cents. My point is that these prices never come down at the rate they go up… nor as fast.

I personally believe there are two major contributors. One, shippers are making extra profit from these fees, particularly when the prices drop. Second, and probably more importantly is the fact that too many people in powerful positions have stock portfolios full of oil and gas stocks. As we all know, these companies are recording record profits and have throughout these troubled years. They figure a way, because they are allowed to by the powerful politicians who personally benefit from these hefty dividends.

Well, for the sake of my blood pressure, I’m getting off this soapbox. It will not get any better until elected officials truly look at what is in the best interest of the citizens as a whole. Unfortunately, I don’t see that happening until the voters manage to get term limits on the ballot. That’s the only way… as I see it… we know how good politicians are at policing themselves!