Gas Prices And Deregulation: George Bush's Legacy
Someone asked as a request whether the rise of gas prices is tied to a Bush being into office. The simple answer is yes, but not for the reasons that you would think.
Politics aside, there appears to be a connection with a Bush being into office and the rise is gas prices. I am not, however, like so many of my liberal friends who believe this is due to a corrupt intention to manipulate the gas prices by the Bush family. Instead, I believe it is a change in regulations.
Generally, Republicans want as little regulation as possible over American business. This is also known as the free market approach. The current Bush ran a deregulator believing that the market could better regulate the economy that the government. For the most part, I actually believe this is a valid contention. However, I do not believe this theory works when it comes to energy.
In the early part of this decade, California deregulated power. What was seen as a way to promote competition in the marketplace became an economic disaster. California no longer had enough energy and experienced rolling blackouts. Prices rose out of control. There was no competition. This is due to the fact that there are only a few producers of energy.
The same is true for oil. There are very few countries that can produce the amount of oil the United States uses. Granted, many countries have oil, only a few companies control its output. Without government regulation, these companies have complete control over the price.
Now I believe in alternative energy. But it is not here yet. Alternative energies are not yet cost effective or feasible. The Bush administration did nothing to move it along and showed no interest to do so. This meant that the oil producers knew that there would be no regulation of gas and no competition. This leads to the price going up under any economic model.
So yes, it is coincidence, but not by corruption. If President Bush had not been so anti-regulation and pro-market, the prices may have remained stable. But given the various wars, the use of oil by the military in those wars, and a complete lack of discovery on alternative fuels, the prices we paid a few months ago was inevitable. And now, in Bush's last days, the prices are higher to get some last minute profits before regulation returns. Hopefully, we will push for alternatives as well. We will see.
Just my rant. I may be wrong.
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