The price of legislative overreaction.


Tom Garrett 4 years, 1 month ago

The cost of gasoline in California has been a nice, neat one buck more than it has been here in Arizona. We have been averaging $3.67 and they have been averaging $4.67, with some folks over there paying more than $5.00 a gallon.

The question is why?

There are three reasons:

ONE is the usual price gouging by the oil companies, which are charging more just because there is a phony shortage. Here are their excuses for it.

a. A fire that took place way back in August in just one refinery, and which affected nothing. They hid that fact, but it is now common knowledge.

b. One refinery in the L.A. area lost power for a while (half a day).

c. They themselves shut down two other refineries and a pipeline.

However, there are still two other reasons, and while corporate greed may account for most of the increase, the California legislature has to bear some of the blame.

Reason TWO for the higher price is that the tax rate on gasoline over there in CA--set by their legislature--is 31¢ higher on every gallon.

Reason THREE is that while everybody else is satisfied to use a type of pollution-reducing gasoline that does the job just fine, California, always at the extreme end of the scale on environmental matters, insists of using a type that costs a lot more and is a lot more trouble to make.

So you know what? (Brace yourself for a shock.)

Join me in thanks to the Arizona Legislature.

Here's mine: Thank you AZLEG!


Ronald Hamric 4 years, 1 month ago

You indicated that I have an uncanny ability to touch on your "sensitive issues". You just hit on one of mine. After 37 years in the People's Democratic Republic of Kalifornia (derision intended), I have been very much intune to whether a similar state of affairs, that are currently in place there, is coming to Arizona. As I read some of the Letters to the Editor, and watch to see what types of "legislative propositions" are on our ballots, I can readily sense the slow "infection" of the socio/political ideology that has made Kalifornia such a pitiful place, beginning to show it's presence in our state. "And Americans are already seceding from one another — ethnically, culturally, politically. Middle-class folks flee high-tax California, as Third World immigrants, legal and illegal, pour in to partake of the cornucopia of social welfare benefits the Golden Land dispenses." Pat Buchanan: Americans are already seceding from one another Human Events Nov.30, 2012

As I am approaching the end of my time ( I long ago accepted my mortality), I am forever thankful to the God of the Bible for the blessings He has bestowed upon me during my life. My only real regret is that my grand-daughters will NEVER get to know the kind of America I knew, warts and all. It was a wonderful and great ride while it lasted.


Tom Garrett 4 years, 1 month ago

In every piece of legislation, no matter how beneficial it may be, how logical, how necessary, there is always a limit beyond which it should not go. We have several problems in this nation, and one of them is people who seem unable to find the point at which laws go from being useful to being a part of the problem, or the creation of a new one.

We have other problems, but that's a big one.


Tom Garrett 4 years, 1 month ago

In others words, it makes good sense to have gasoline which does the least harm to us or to the environment, just as it makes sense to have pollution controls on cars, but when the end result is an increase in pollution or an increase cost which convinces people to use a more polluting form of transport the result is a predictable increase in exactly what we are trying to decrease.

For example, as far as auto pollution controls are concerned, we would gain by taking all pollution controls off vehicles except the air pump, the catalytic converter, fuel injection, and computer control of things like the choke control and engine speed at startup.


The rest of the controls, which are very expensive, by the way (and are apparently only there to increase profits), cause such a drop in mileage that the end result is more pollution, not less. In other words, with the unnecessary controls installed in your car you use more gas to drive a given distance, and so you pollute more.

These are proven facts, by the way, and although no one talks about them anymore because we have gotten used to paying $1,200 or more for a car because of them, we no longer complain about the wasted money, the truth is the truth.

This is something that Congress could fix in no time. And along with it Congress could, and should, also get rid of the wasteful and pointless testing of vehicles for pollution. Not only does it waste time--your time if you don't live up here--but the amount of time spent running up engines to be tested and sitting in line with them running as you wait to go through the test has several times been shown to add more 6 to 8 times more pollution into the atmosphere as is stopped by finding the one in ten thousand cars that needs something done to it. We long since have passed the time when testing had any meaning. When it started the majority of vehicles lacked pollution controls, but not anymore. There isn't a chance in Hell that today's cars are going to suddenly start polluting, but here we sit, stuck with an out of date and wasteful program which is running primarily because it makes a profit for someone.

Legislative overreaction, prompted at times by legislators who want to be seen doing something, by other legislators who pander to those who make a profit from some law, by ignorance, and by greed, has become the major problem of our time. We have become a nation of lemmings who follow the Holy Grail to the edge of the cliff and gleefully leap into the air, believing all the while that we are doing the right thing.


Ronald Hamric 4 years, 1 month ago

Tom, I find it rather amusing when I hear Congress calling for stricter CAFE standards to increase the mpg of the next generation of vehicles. The truth is I bought my wife one of the first Honda Accords when they first came out in 1974. Fully equipped with the only options being some little bumper guards or a sunroof. Everything else was "as designed" The engine was a CVCC (compound vortex combustion chamber) type 4 cylinder, 5 speed manual transmission, four door. We got 47 mpg highway and high 30's around town with that car. It was 4 door and very roomy and a pleasure to drive even in the traffic of SoCal. And it cost a whopping $4,200.00 off the lot! One can hardly buy four all terrain tires for that amount today.

Now I continually hear that the manufacturers are struggleing to get non-hybrids up into the 30 mpg range. BS on that! They know what the formula is, they proved that back in the early 70's. This is all market and government manipulation.


Tom Garrett 4 years, 1 month ago

We always get stuck between two groups:

One group wants to change the laws of physics and run cars on air.

The other group wants to change the laws of economics and run cars on money.

Want to get better mileage?

We could try reducing the weight of cars by taking all that unnecessary armor out of the doors, yanking all those electric motors out of the seats, and letting people crank their windows up and down or adjust their mirrors with a finger.

My 1998 GMC 4 cylinder pickup gets 28 mpg even up here on these hills because it is a stick shift with no fancy electrical seats et al. Now if I could rip out the other stuff I don't need I could probably up that three or four. That little puppy runs up and down these hills like a rocket, and I do not feel underprivileged.


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