The Squawkbox has been full of comments and complaints about the high price of gasoline and the newspaper has headlines about the rising price of a barrel of Sweet Texas Crude. Prices now are pushing $4 a gallon and are predicted to surpass $4 in the coming months, which may derail our fragile economic recovery.
As always, we are following the human tradition of blaming someone else (generally, whoever is currently living in the White House) for something we created by demanding things we want, i.e., more powerful cars.
Our gasoline prices are created just like the current situation in Greece where Greeks are blaming their government for the austerity measures required to keep them in the European Union because they went on a spending spree for years, busting their budget.
But guess what? We could lower gas prices. With just a few adjustments, gas prices could easily be in the 50 cent to $1 range. Not only could prices be lower, the other benefits would include lower toxic emissions, lower commodity utilization, lower traffic death rate and injuries and much more. There would, of necessity, be some sacrifices.
So, how do we get to these lower gasoline prices in just a few years? Alas, it would require action by Congress to pass yet another law. A simple law. It would read something like this: All road vehicles can have no more than 100 horsepower.
Will that happen? Not likely. The politicians, industry, and drivers would not let it happen-at least not until prices reach the $10 to $20 a gallon range. To quote Walt Kelly’s Pogo: “We have met the enemy and he is us.”