I Am Buying Gas for Under Two Dollars. Tell Me Why I Should Not Be Happy About This.

Every I repeat every news outlet tells me every single day why I should not be happy that my gas budget has been cut in half since July. (NPR has even told me twice, since they inexplicably played the same news broadcast this afternoon as they did yesterday.) Here is the explanation from the News Media of why I should be upset about affordable gas: It is the sign of a shrinking economy.

Oh horrors!

Well let me tell you something, News Media. This. abstraction. is. not. helpful. to. me.

I still have a job. I am still among the 92.4 percent of the population that does. And as far as I can tell my job is still secure. I have lost money in my retirement fund, but I will not be retiring for, um, let’s see, thirty-eight more years. I’m pretty sure I’ll get my money back by then. But really what it comes down to is that I have at least fifty more dollars to kick around in my budget every month. Boohoo!

I get it, though. I get it. I’m no Pollyanna. I know generally and vaguely how this stuff works on a macro/global scale. I also know that my socioeconomic stratum is not the one hit hardest by these types of things. So forgive me if my critique seems a little bourgeois. But don’t people below me on the economic ladder stand to gain just as much or more than me? And don’t I remember from Econ 101 something about a shrinking economy being a natural and healthy part of a free market economy? Okay, okay. I know what we’re in the middle of is a little more than your garden variety shrinking economy. I’ve read enough of the doomsayers to realize this. But tell me again how lower prices for gas, food, and homes is really actually bad news. This is what seems bourgeois to me. Fifty dollars means a lot more to me than it does to the pundits in Washington.

So until the failing economy actually affects me in a more concrete way than the unexpected-but-welcome surprise of falling prices on necessary commodities, I will not let you kill my joy, News Media. No way. I am going to buy an SUV from one of the failing automakers, fill it up with premium gasoline, fill myself up with Twinkies and YooHoo, and drive that behemoth all over God’s green creation. And then I’m going to park it in the driveway of the foreclosed house I just bought for a song. Because now I can afford to do things like this, and you can’t take that away from me, News Media, no sir, not ever.


2 comments so far

  1. Greg on

    Maybe the oil industry has become alarmed by recent developments in American politics, and is lowering prices in an effort to lull the alternative energy movement back to sleep, or at least remove their political impetus. If so, then this reduction in gas prices may be only temporary.

  2. R.H. on

    It is good in the short term. But recall that one of the main reasons gas prices are cheaper at present is because of shrinking global demand as markets tighten their belts. If everybody jumps back on board now that prices are low, the spike in demand in tight markets could mean even higher prices than we saw last summer.

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