A word on "gouging."
My friend Tamara points out that Indiana has created a law against gasoline price gouging.
While I was at the gas station the other night, the clerk was complaining about the high prices, and how "somebody oughta do something."
Friends, I'm going to say it again: "gouging" is a made-up concept, put forth by people who would prefer to see some socialism.
Do you want a command economy?
Look. If I have a product, you you want that product, and I invested a lot of trouble and money into getting that product, why shouldn't I get to decide what I want to sell it for, in a manner that makes me the most profit?
To say that "the government oughta do sumpin'" is to fail to understand a free economy. You want the oil companies to keep selling? Well, it's got to be profitable for them. Oh, you want our government to subsidize oil companies? Well, shucks-- we've already done that, and that amounts to the same thing, anyway.
It's a global economy. Within a very few years, China will be consuming as much oil as the US. Well, everyone's using oil, and has money to spend to purchase it. That means the price of a gallon of petrol will rise.
Supply stays constant but demand increases: price goes up.
Supply decreases and demand increases: price goes up RAPIDLY.
This is not a new concept, people.
Do we need to work on methods of conservation? Sure.
Do we probably need to make special arrangements in bona fide emergencies? Sure.
But the simple fact that prices have gone up does not constitute an emergency. It just sucks, is all.
That is all.