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Letter: Everyone is lying about gas prices

Somebody is not telling the truth? I am sure that almost everyone who lives in Hollister noticed that over last weekend beginning on Sept. 29 and going through Tuesday Oct. 4, gas prices went up on average 35 cents and as much as $1 per gallon depending on the station. Most places raised their prices multiple times during that six day stretch. 

Now I am not professing to be an expert on the petroleum industry, but my gut tells me that when a retailer purchases a tanker truck load of gas there is an agreed upon price per gallon for that fuel. Let’s say, for the sake of argument, that two weeks ago I as a station owner purchased fuel for $4 per gallon, I would then mark it up to make some money so let’s say I sold it for $5 per gallon. Then when I go to purchase another shipment of fuel my supplier said the price is now $4.50 per gallon. I can understand the need to mark it up. 

But why between shipments would I need to raise the price? My supplier and I made an agreement for a price for that load of fuel. Without naming any businesses, the place where I purchase my gas gets their shipments on Tuesdays. On Sept. 27, the price was just below $6 per gallon, but by the following Tuesday when the next shipment arrived it had gone up almost 40 cents per gallon. Why, no new shipment? The fuel they had had already been purchased for an agreed upon price. 

No apparent fuel shortage in town, as all the gas stations were open. So why did every station in town raise their price and do it more than once in less than a week? The answers are very interesting. This is where I think people are not telling the truth. 

If you ask our political leaders, they will tell you it’s a result of the war in the Ukraine, OPEC, Russia, etc. They may also express a desire to move away from fossil fuels to “clean” energy sources, (that’s a whole other letter). If you ask the refineries, they will tell you that their costs have gone up, that crude oil is more expensive, labor costs, etc. have forced them to raise their prices. If you ask the wholesaler, they will tell you that the price hikes have been passed down to them, so they have to pass them down to the retailer, (individual stations). If you ask the retailers, they will say something similar.

But again, why did the price go up between shipments? My answer would be simple: greed. Everyone is profiting off of this situation except you and me. So I go back to my initial statement that someone is not telling the truth. 

In logic, there is something called the law of non contradiction; it states that something cannot be both A and not A at the same time. Basically, something can’t be true and not true at the same time. So logically, if the reasons we are given for the ridiculous hikes in fuel prices are not true then they are lies. 

I absolutely believe that we are all being lied to, and I would assign the lies like this: 40% from the federal government, 40% from the state government, 10% from the refineries, 7% from the wholesalers and 3% from the retailers. Add that up and that is a 100% lie. 

Why do I bring this up? Because in one month there is an election. If you are not happy with the way things are, vote the current leaders out and let’s try something different. Remember Einstein’s definition of insanity is to do the same thing over and over and expect a different outcome. 

Randy Logue