I work in a small town that now has 4 gas stations. 

Gas station “M” Is owned by the same folks who own an “M” in a neighboring city so their gas prices are always the same.

Same story with gas station “B”.

Gas station “S” is family owned and operated and they pretty much do their own thing.

Gas station “A” is the new kid in town.

Gas prices in town are always the same, or within a few pennies, at the three existing stations.  However, if I travel to the next “big” city to go to Wol Mrt or something, gas there is, on average, ten cents cheaper than the town I work in, but I don’t buy gas there because 1. I’m usually not in that town when I need gas and 2.  I typically buy gas from “M” because I have their Maztercard and I get 5% back on my gas purchases at their stations, plus I got 10% for the first sixty days.  At $3.79 gallon, 5% back is an okay thing. (As an aside: I work in SC and the gas tax for SC is cheaper than NC so it’s always cheaper to buy my gas in SC)

Well, another shake up in the small town when  “A” opened with a price of $3.73.  That made “M” do the same thing.  While I’d love to support “A” in an effort to bitch slap those who have monopolized the gas market in small town, I want/need my 5% back.  So, until I get a generic Maztercard or Viza that gives me my 5%, I’m going to buy from “M”.   Wednesday I filled up for $3.69.

My little side of beef is this: You know they aren’t putting themselves in a position to not make a profit; nobody is in business to lose money.  Their profits may not be as much, but they aren’t losing money.  If we have the “wiggle” room for a gas-war, why can’t we use that “wiggle” room so people can afford to drive to work and feed their families?  I don’t have the magic solution, but it’s odd to me people who price gouge after a disaster (i.e. a $300 generator marked up to $1000) are arrested and pay consequences, why can’t the same be done for oil companies?  It’s gouging.  I don’t care how you slice it, dice it or fry it up.  It is what it is. 

Also, I think we should elect a group of housewives or single gals or anyone who has to balance a household budget to fill the Presidency; middle class, working people who have to make their money last every month.  I’d also suggest we put a Great Clips at the White House.  I’ve had a $100 haircut and I’ve had a $15 haircut; they turned out about the same.   Go figure.