Oil Be damned

As many of my countrymen will have noticed of late, there have been angry rumblings about the prices of petrol. The prices quite frankly have begun to spiral out of control, as it doesn’t seem all that long ago that the idea of paying over one pound per litre of unleaded fuel was deemed madness. However, now my local petrol station it can be seen that the price is now £1.17 and rising. In fact only about 3 months ago when I set off on my long road trip to Cardiff (which I take every now and again) I found that it cost about £1.14 at the most expensive. To think that the price is still creeping up at this rate is somewhat worrying.

But why are we paying so much is what people cry. I personally find that this is down to a number of factors such as the price of oil per barrel (See! the Iraq war was not a good idea for getting more oil was it!) and government taxes etc. I don’t propose one single reason for this happening although I am suspicious of the fact that all the major oil companies are still posting record profits in spite of their higher costs. This is what makes me angry at the corporate world, and especially the oil companies, is that because they offer such a frequently needed product they feel that they can form a cartel (someone prove to me that it isn’t because I don’t see how it can’t be) and profiteer from the everyman.

However I don’t intend to squarely blame the company as that’s a limited and rather easy target. I feel people themselves are to blame for accepting this treatment, and giving in too easily to the higher prices at the pumps. I’ve seen plenty of petitions on Facebook and circulated through e-mails that suggest a way of instigating consumer power over the petrol companies but because too many people just have to use their car (normally a gas guzzler) to drive a mile down the road to pick up their kids or buy a loaf of bread, means that this never works, why not walk?

Admittedly it is hard to blame people who use their cars for their livelihoods as that would just be stupid to expect them to suffer for the sake of others. What I can’t stand is when people have to use their cars for everything and then complain if petrol is too pricey and yet not offer any action or solution.

This is why I hope that we have another petrol shortage like we did in 2000 as only then will we learn that through serious and meaningful action we are not at the mercy of the price-setters. It would also nice to get one up on the greedy or selfish people who add to the problem. If you don’t intend to do anything about it then don’t complain about it!


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