Long gas lines

Uttercast: News Shortage?

Uttercast: News Shortage? (Photo credit: doughaslam)

If you have been watching TV coverage of the aftermath of hurricane Sandy, you have probably noticed the long lines of motorists waiting to purchase gas for their vehicles. The lines are the result, not of shortages, but of the absence of electricity to power the gas pumps at the service stations. During 1973-74 and again in 1979, gas lines like the ones you are seeing in New Jersey and New York formed everywhere in the US because of actual shortages of gasoline. The shortages were relatively small, 6%+, but there was panic buying. Short tempers caused fights to break out in lines as some motorists tried to jump ahead of others who had been waiting longer.

What you are seeing today in a small part of the country could be the future of the entire country, if we or Israel bomb Iran. The mere threat of Iran closing the Strait of Hormuz could create shortages and send gas prices soaring. The US Navy may be able to keep shipping safe in the area, but insurers will raise their rates immediately on ships in the area. The threat of an Iranian attack will be sufficient to keep some ship owners out of the area. If you do not want to spend time in lines awaiting your opportunity to buy gas in rationed quantities at high prices, tell your politicians not to attack Iran.

Please see Strait of Hormuz | Strait of Hormuz part 2 | Strait of Hormuz part 3

Airline fares

Las Vegas, Nevada

Las Vegas, Nevada (Photo credit: RobertCiavarro)

My wife is flying around the continent today trying to reach home in Utah from Thunder Bay, Ontario which is the Canadian Midwest. To get a cheap fare, she was compelled to fly to Toronto and then to Newark, New Jersey on her way to Las Vegas, Nevada. From Las Vegas she will ride a shuttle bus 120 miles to Saint George.

To me this makes no sense at all. My understanding is that the major cost of flying is the fuel cost. Why should an airline or a nation expend more fuel to fly more miles to offer a lower fare? No sense at all. Airlines should be required to offer fares directly proportional to the miles flown. It would have been much more convenient for my wife to fly from our brand-new airport in Saint George to Salt Lake City or Denver and then directly to Minneapolis and/or Thunder Bay. We as a nation are wasting fuel with the present system as well as the time and convenience of our citizens.