Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Raise Them Gas Prices!

Gas is $3.40 a gallon in Chicago. Yeah, I feel that. But I believe that while raising prices on gas creates some very real problems for commuters who are financially struggling, it's good for us as a culture.

Higher gas prices mean we'll be less likely to drive without considering the expense, if not on the environment then at least on our pocketbook. It also encourages us to break our national addiction on oil, creating a more stable economy and fewer oil-motivated wars. Higher gas prices will most likely encourage people to draw their worlds into tighter physical proximity, moving toward a key principle in community growth: proxemics. It also encourages other community-creating opportunities like public transportation and carpooling.

So for environmental stewardship, a more stable economy, fewer wars over oil, and increased community ... I say raise them gas prices, baby!

I know there are a few Hungry and Thirsty readers from the UK who's gas prices are nearly £1.10 a liter ($7.52 a gallon). How does that affect your lifestyle (besides being a darn clean nation for pollution standards!)?
.

12 comments:

David said...

I'm considering buying a horse...

and buggy?

Al said...

John, maybe this is why someone stole your bike... they couldn't afford the gas for their car! I guess they haven't heard of the Hybrid yet...
:)

John Lynch said...

Ha! Perfect, David! Except with a horse, it's a different kind of gas problem! ;)

cindi said...

i'm with you. i actually started riding the bus... and have fallen in love with being surrounded by the salt of the earth....

Mark H said...

(from the UK)

I used to love my car. I had a Lotus sportscar and a sporty family car. It wasn't the high petrol prices that put me off, or the environmental consequences. It was the realisation that sitting in my own cocooned environment was a missed opportunity to enjoy walking through the community, nodding and smiling at passers-by, and stopping for the odd conversation.

I'm very fortunate. I live within walking distance of our town centre (approx 25 mins) and of my workplace. I also bought myself a VERY nice bicycle for less than one year's car running costs (without even factoring in the purchasing costs). It runs like a full-sized bike yet it folds up for the train or to take straight into the office - no parking hassles for me, I go door-to-door!

I'm fitter, healthier, more sociable ... and, yes, considered a little wierd by car-loving friends.

John Lynch said...

That's an awesome testimony Mark! Thank you for sharing it. Cheers & safe biking!

John Lynch said...

... and Cindi, I think I'll join you on the public commute once Aleta and I are down in Phoenix. See you there!

M Moore said...

Well, I lived in the UK last year and I miss the good ol public transportation. Stats wise...it might be $7.60 in dollars but since the pound is about 2 to 1 that makes gas in the UK about $3.80, still more expensive than $3.50. Still too expensive for me!!!

John Lynch said...

Ah, Senior Moore! A math challenge!

A liter is .26 gallons, so there are 3.8 liters per 1 gallon. And like you said, the exchange rate is 2 American dollars per 1 British pound.

So £1.10 per liter multiplied by 3.8 equals £3.80 per gallon. That multiplied by 2 for the 2007 exchange rate yields about $7.40 per gallon. (I won't even tell you how long it just took me to do that math.)

If $3.80 hurts enough to drive us toward public transit then $7.40's gotta send us right back to walking "uphill both ways"! Man, we're gonna be fit!

(And now that I wooped your math challenge, you get to buy the beers on Monday! Peace in Christ homeboy!)

M Moore said...

I want to write something really clever but honestly I'm just embarassed! haha! After making the post I thought to myself, "I think there is something sketchy with your math..." I think I made this mistake when talking about gas with one of my Scot friends. I accept defeat in the math challenge and will take responsibility on Monday! :)

Bob Carder said...

The Amish had it right in the first place. Believe me they are loaded and it's not just with manure.

John Lynch said...

I believe it. Our Amish kin have much to teach us about the liberty and bounty of simple living. Thanks for celebrating them, Bob. Great example!