January 6th, 2009
12:41 PM ET

Lower Gas Prices: Asset or Liability for the U.S.?

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

Go figure. Gas prices are actually down since President Bush took office eight years ago.

According to the Energy Information Administration, the average price per gallon last week was $1.59. When adjusted for inflation, that's 9% less than when President Bush took office and considerably less than the cost last summer which was more than $4 per gallon.

Gas prices are starting to creep up a few cents now. Oil prices have risen in response to the fighting in Gaza, and there are predictions that after declining for 5 months gasoline could cost $2 a gallon by spring.

Meanwhile, consumers are only too happy to spend less at the pump. People are now spending $25 a week on gas instead of $75. That translates to a savings of about one billion dollars a day for American motorists, according to AAA. They say high gas prices contributed to the recession, and lower prices could help turn things around by leaving people with more cash in their pockets to spend on something besides gas.

The downside is that lower gas prices take the emphasis off developing alternative energy sources and breaking our dependence on imported oil.

Here’s my question to you: Are lower gas prices an asset or a liability for the U.S.?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

Tripp from Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania writes:
The Earth may pay a higher price in ecological terms, but tax payers are receiving a big "gas-tax" break right now. Lower gas prices mean lower cost for producing goods, lower cost for transporting goods, and will eventually lead to lower prices for those goods. It's also really nice having a few more dollars in my wallet at the end of the week.

Karly in Portland, Oregon writes:
Liability. We need to have a gas tax imposed to bring the rates back up to, or close to where they were in Summer ‘08. This encourages other means of transportation, while providing funding towards ending our dependency on foreign oil.

Steve in Canada writes:
Short term it’s a bonus. It puts more dollars in everyone’s pocket. Long term it restarts a bad cycle where exploration and development suffer. We drive more because it’s cheaper. Thirsty vehicles become the norm, and prices go up again. The cycle repeats. Been there, done that!

Jim in Indiana writes:
Jack, there are no jobs in my town. To get work you have to travel out of town. Sad part is after transportation cost you are making less then minimum wage. Gas price is an asset to the individual but a liability to the country because now gas consumption is up in order for people to survive.

Chuck in Warren, Ohio writes:
Jack: The price of gas is only a come-on to keep this country under the thumb of Big Oil and Mideast control. The best thing the auto industry can do right now is to build vehicles with Flex-fuel systems that will use CNG, Gasoline, and Bio-based fuels. This would bridge the gap to fix the energy problems until new systems replace oil based fuels.

Filed under: Economy • Gas Prices
soundoff (83 Responses)
  1. Patrick in Hampstead, Maryland

    Jack – it dosent matter. We have to become independent of foriegn oil and the foriegn dictators who sell it to us. There is no logical sense to gas prices going from 1.50 to 4 dollars and back again. If you smell a rat, it is a rat. And I smell more than one. Liability if we fail to act on oil independence. Probably riots in the street the next time it goes up. And it will.

    January 6, 2009 at 3:53 pm |
  2. shobana in florida

    Its definitely an asset for the US. Hope the new government, without a delay, keeps it steady in the long run and help boost its economy. Hope it remains low for a long long time.

    January 6, 2009 at 3:54 pm |
  3. karen-phoenix

    It's a liability!!! SUV's all over the place and spreading toxic fumes over the land!!!! It was kinda nice when they were not around!!!

    January 6, 2009 at 3:54 pm |
  4. irv Lilley

    Hi Jack , Lower gas prices will only lull the people's desire for the
    developement of alternative sources of energy.

    January 6, 2009 at 3:55 pm |
  5. Georgia R. Livingston

    I think lower gas prices are a liability. The gasoline "shortage" of the 1970's was an opportunity for the US to look for other energy sources and to become independent of foreign oil. Yet, as soon as the shortage was over, we became complacent gas guzzlers again. And, here we are forty years later in an even more dire situation. Our memories are short, and, as they say, "Those who cannot learn from history are doomed to repeat it." It won't be the first time.

    January 6, 2009 at 3:55 pm |
  6. Nuwan

    It is a liability. The whole America is falling back again into a comfort zone about Energy. That will discourage any active search for alternative energy. This low gas prices are only temporary. The energy crisis is not.

    Nuwan from Houston,TX

    January 6, 2009 at 3:56 pm |
  7. Rian McMurtry

    The high prices were a warning. We need to get off the oil, as quickly as possible. It's already swayed Congress to do the dumb thing and drill more. Low prices can help tide us over.

    January 6, 2009 at 3:56 pm |
  8. Jan Millsboro Delaware

    I disagree with you Jack. I do not think that the downside is that lower gas prices take the emphasis off developing alternative energy sources and breaking our dependence on imported oil. I think America learned it's lesson and we have a President whose head is not up the butt of the oil industry. The downside is that there will be less tax money from loss of gasoline sales to fund the road projects needed to provide jobs for the unemployed. I expect more roads to become "toll roads". Let the people who use and abuse our roads, help pay to upgrade them.

    January 6, 2009 at 3:56 pm |
  9. Jane (Minnesota)

    Americans shouldn't get too comfortable with low gas prices it's only temporary – infact gas is now $1.79 where I live – nearly 30 cents a gallon higher than it was just a little over a week ago. Develop the alternative sources now and don't wait for the next wave of $4.00 plus gas.

    January 6, 2009 at 3:57 pm |
  10. earle,florida

    Let me get this straight , if we tax gas ,it will curb consumption,while simultaneously adding tax revenue to the states,and government, thus creating the sense of urgency," to find an alternative fuel"! What makes this new rationale, any different than the past. The only ones that get hurt are the working poor. They'll have less purchasing power,already compounded by their measely paychecks,just causing more misery for the ones who really need the most hope,...no Jack,this is a terrible liability for all!

    January 6, 2009 at 3:58 pm |
  11. Greg, Hamilton Ontario

    That's like asking a junkie if lower Crack prices are a good thing. Until our economies turn around lower prices on anything is a good idea.

    January 6, 2009 at 3:59 pm |
  12. Bill

    I would think lower gas prices are a liability. The sense of urgency about controlling the oil speculators and wall street gurus has been lifted. As soon as the current economic crisis has passed and the stock market begins to rebound, we will find the oil and gas prices climbing back toward those records we had in mid 2008. And dare I say it, surpassing them. Do you think the Saudis would consider selling me an oil well or 2 with the economy the way it is.

    January 6, 2009 at 3:59 pm |
  13. Nancy, Tennessee

    One has to wonder why when we talk about alternative fuels seriously the price of a gallon of gasoline drops like a rock. We must not be fooled by the lure of lower prices at the pump for what could be only a short time. Scientists and engineers need to stay the course in coming up with alternative fuels and cars that burn less fuel. It will take many years to do away with gas burning cars with attrition. So we best get started soon.

    January 6, 2009 at 4:00 pm |
  14. Conor in Chicago

    It's an asset. I really don't think the the American consumer is going to forget what it was like paying $4.50/gallon during an economic crisis and all that comes with that. I truly believe that the crazy prices we were paying just a few months agao will stay with Americans for the foreseeable future. That being said lower prices are always better.

    January 6, 2009 at 4:04 pm |
  15. Bill from Tucson AZ

    I would think lower gas prices are a liability. The sense of urgency about controlling the oil speculators and wall street gurus has been lifted. As soon as the current economic crisis has passed and the stock market begins to rebound, we will find the oil and gas prices climbing back toward those records we had in mid 2008. And dare I say it, surpassing them. Do you think the Saudis would consider selling me an oil well or 2 with the economy the way it is.

    from Tucson AZ

    January 6, 2009 at 4:04 pm |
  16. Gerard Canta N.Arlington NJ

    Lower gas prices are good for America only if people continued to drive conservatively but folks tend to waste what they get cheap, which is a shame because if they used less it may get even cheaper. Alternative fuel is still the answer.

    January 6, 2009 at 4:07 pm |
  17. Jerry Alpharetta, GA

    Lower gas prices are a tremendous asset to the US. However, given the short vision constantly demonstrated by the American people the asset willl be wasted on acquisition of Gas Sucking Pigs, aka SUV's that are now very nicely priced and the cycle will begin all over again. It is truly amazing that we Americans have to be absolutely forced into doing the right thing. So, let's raise the taxes.

    January 6, 2009 at 4:08 pm |
  18. Howard M. Bolingbrook IL

    The current gas prices are a direct asset to me. As far as the over all effect on the country I think it helps, but we can't take our eye off the ball as it relates alternative energy sources and supplies.

    January 6, 2009 at 4:08 pm |
  19. Terry from North Carolina

    This can only be a liability for us, as usual we will get comfortable with the lower gas prices and go into a coma again not working to develope fuel efficient vehicles or alternative fuels. Congress will do nothing and our president elect will get involved in the middle east fiasco and forget all about everything else.

    January 6, 2009 at 4:10 pm |
  20. Tino

    I don't trust them to do anything right.

    January 6, 2009 at 4:11 pm |
  21. arlene in iowa

    an asset if we don't forget what our real goals are . slowly rising means the party is over for low gas prices.

    January 6, 2009 at 4:22 pm |
  22. Jay, Niagara Falls, Ont

    Liability. As soon as people start talking about real alternatives to oil, the folks who own the oil drop the price to shut those people up. A lot of folks only talk of getting off oil when it hits them in the wallet, and don't care when gas isn't a huge part of their budget. If sobriety became the new fad in America, you'd see those beer prices come down pretty quick. Same thing: keep 'em hooked.

    January 6, 2009 at 4:23 pm |
  23. NANCY , Grand Ledge MI

    Right now it is an asset! I can afford to drive to work. But we can't forget how badly we were hurt by high gas prices.. We need energy independence for our national security, because as long as we're dependent on foreign oil, we are at their mercy!!

    January 6, 2009 at 4:24 pm |
  24. vern-t anaheim,ca

    i don't know ,all i do know is gas prices have begun to go back up lately and i will not be supprised if they return to the high prices of last year.this is a case of colusion between the oil companies and the arab countries and just plain greed

    January 6, 2009 at 4:24 pm |
  25. Pat,Lexington, Ky.

    Probably both. I may be wrong, but I'm counting on people like Obama and Pickens and Gore and others to keep our need for alternative energy in the forefront and just do it!

    January 6, 2009 at 4:24 pm |
  26. Diane Dagenais Turbide

    Hi Jack,

    I wanted to add a comment on your article about tax cuts. I believe in this tax cut but I assume people will be paying down their debt...which is not a bad thing but it does not add more money in the economy..that is why I believe in investing in infrastructures projects. But i believe that we need to look at reducing credit cards interest rates for two reasons : people need to pay down their own debts and at the same time by seeing their debt rate going down will feel again confident in spending money again in the economy because they will feel they can manage and pay their debt. Look at our lifestyle and every thing that we buy is linked to credit...we need to give back to people reasonable interest rate to manage paying pay back their debt. This economy is not changing back to the 40s where every one would save money before buying what they need and that is why we need to change how we manage credit and reduce greed, allow payments to be manageable and confidence restored...in the stores!!!

    January 6, 2009 at 4:25 pm |
  27. Danni

    I like the lower gas prices, but what good is that if we can't afford to go anywhere or do anything. Soon gas will be under $1, but i will be out of a job, so is that realy an asset?
    Danni Upland,CA

    January 6, 2009 at 4:25 pm |
  28. Jackie in Dallas

    Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    With our current economy, lower gas prices are a temporary boon, but in the long term, not good. We tend to forget things like greening up America, encouraging fuel efficiency in our vehicles, and worrying about our environment when prices go down.

    January 6, 2009 at 4:25 pm |
  29. Britney

    Jack, lowering gas price was the best thing that U.S done i belive it a great asset for the united states. we have to understand when the american people was spending money on gas we were getting even worse in our economic distress now that the gas price is low this has really helped the american not worry about gas but their bills.

    Miami, Florida

    January 6, 2009 at 4:26 pm |

    Liability. With low gas prices, I fill up more and go more places. When the gas was high, I filled up less and went less places. Low gas prices will only be an asset if we don't use it some much. I wish I would follow my own advice.

    January 6, 2009 at 4:26 pm |
  31. Will K from San Jose

    Gas prices were just a warning, the real liability for America is our short attention span.

    January 6, 2009 at 4:27 pm |
  32. Okey

    In spite of the lower gas prices causing most Americans to take their eye off the ball when it comes to alternative fuels, it still would have to be considered an asset if it provides a boost to the economy during these financially dangerous times. Besides, thankfully we will now finally have a Congress and Administration that will work towards developing a serious energy policy... unless we were lied to again.

    January 6, 2009 at 4:27 pm |
  33. Allen

    Jack, as long as we don't go back to our old habits of driving our gas guzzlers just to burn gas, lower gas prices are good for those of us who don't waste the resource. I'm still using the same 50 gallons of gas a month for my two-car household that I've been using for the last 4.7 years. I can't really use any less, and I don't need to use any more.

    January 6, 2009 at 4:29 pm |
  34. Eric VanSickle (Cedar Falls, Iowa)


    This is a very tricky question. On the one hand, we all love not having to take out a second mortgage (if we can get one after the "sub-prime" mortgage mess that created the "credit crunch") just to fill up our tanks. On the other, the call to create alternative energy sources and eliminate foreign-oil dependency and "drill, baby, drill" will get drowned out.

    Here's how I stand: $4 per gallon is too much, $1.50 might be too little adjusted to inflation (inflation, what's that?). The right price for gas might be $2.50 per gallon, while oil should be in the neighborhood of $50 per barrel for everyone to be happy. But, we need to continue the development of ethanol, electric and fuel-cell cars, wind, hydroelectric, nuclear, solar and other energies, because even if we do "drill, baby, drill" here, we'll run into this same mess within the next 25 to 50 years.

    January 6, 2009 at 4:29 pm |
  35. Annie, Atlanta

    Asset, definitely. Low/middle/fixed income families can't handle $4 a gallon. And what about the obscene amounts of money the oil companies made. Wonder who's pockets that trickled down into?

    January 6, 2009 at 4:31 pm |
  36. Joan, Southern Illinois

    That all depends on our government and the car makers. We went through this twice before. Do we learn or keep doing the same things over and over?
    I bought a different car in 2003. I looked at the gas mileage and had a hard time finding something that had higher mileage. I feel that the auto makers are not doing what they should be. They can do better in other countries, why not here???? They sure know where to come for a bailout.

    January 6, 2009 at 4:31 pm |
  37. Harry

    It is an extreme liability. The only reason for the low cost, is the recession. If an when the economy starts to pickup, we will be right back in the same boat and have wasted several months of energy conservation planning. Don't take my word for it.... ask the oil companies how many rigs are in the pipeline for drilling in those once protected off shore areas. (Clue- Until they can see oil sustained above $85 a barrel, they are not going to give it any serious consideration, only political posturing. BTW.. that's above $3 a gallon at the pump.)

    January 6, 2009 at 4:34 pm |
  38. Stephen

    Lower gasoline prices are dangerous. When people get to feel comfortable, they let their quard down. We must continue to be aware that all 'resources' have limits. I worry, that the consumer will let down on their conservation efforts, and soon, we will be back at $4.00 gallon gas. Think about it. Did you suffer much when, the price dropped from high to today? What did you miss?

    January 6, 2009 at 4:34 pm |
  39. C from Eatonton, GA

    Look at it as a short term benefit for those who are really hurt by this economy – a sort of "stimulus package" that doesn't require Congress to fight or write any checks... Hopefully by now, we all have "gotten it" that prices will go back up...

    Sure would like to see the reduced gas prices reflected at the grocery store tho...

    January 6, 2009 at 4:35 pm |
  40. Ken in NC

    If you are the Big Oil Companies the lower gas prices are a liability. If you are a consumer they are an asset. If you ride a bicycle it makes lettle difference except when it rains or is cold.

    January 6, 2009 at 4:35 pm |
  41. frankie

    Of course it is an asset, so let's not turn it into a liability. We have been given some breathing room which could make the adjustment to new fuel sources much less painful.

    January 6, 2009 at 4:35 pm |
  42. David Gerstenfeld, Las Vegas

    If the consumer hasn't learned their lesson from last years' prices, then they deserve what they get. OPEC will always be a threat until we don't need them, they need us! The only downside now is tax revenue for cities & states.
    David, Las Vegas

    January 6, 2009 at 4:36 pm |
  43. Sandi, Chicago

    Keeping gas prices and it's tax low is important to Main Street America. If they are fortunate enough to have a job, they need to be able to afford the gas to get to and from work. Millions of Americans are unemployed or are only working part-time – how can they afford higher gas prices and gas taxes?? Chicago has found out that higher taxes on retail and/or cigarettes didn't get the city more money, as a matter of fact, the sales decreased. Time for these politicians to take pay cuts and lower taxes for those of us making little or nothing!

    January 6, 2009 at 4:38 pm |
  44. Hubert Bertrand

    Jack don't look, But gas is going up. They just can't leave well enough along. The big oil CEO's just got to hurt us AMERICANS

    January 6, 2009 at 4:39 pm |
  45. Chas-NJ

    To Jackie:

    Except for one or two words you wrote my exact comment.

    January 6, 2009 at 4:41 pm |
  46. Patricia

    Bad, bad, bad!
    For once, fuel economy moved to the forefront of our psyches. After enduring the setbacks of the Reagan era and the Bushs, we deserve real advances in conservation and green energy. We went from moving ahead with due diligence (a few months ago) to deciding to get the old truck out for the quick trip to the grocery store–all because gas is cheap right now. ARGH!


    January 6, 2009 at 4:41 pm |
  47. Adem Jemal, California

    The price of oil and the value of the dollar are directely proportional. That means, the cheaper the oil is weaker the dollar. And that leads to less investment.

    January 6, 2009 at 4:41 pm |
  48. laurie michigan

    It's been helpful here as we have a 9.6 percent unemployment rate. I sure hope we continue on the road to exploring new methods of providing energy. I'd like to leave this planet a better place for my grandchildren.

    January 6, 2009 at 4:43 pm |

    It depends on which part of our country you mean. There are people that cannot afford higher gas prices and pay their other bills too. There are lots of people that only make ten dollars an hour or live on fixed incomes. Gas in our city is already up to $1.85 a gallon on 1/6/08. Bush hasn't done squat since being in office. If anything was done about gas prices, Barney must have done it.

    January 6, 2009 at 4:44 pm |
  50. Tom, Avon, Me, The Heart of Democracy

    Are you kidding?! It means we get more mileage out of the travel budget. That will be very convenient when the Justice Department recycles Guantanamo for the Bushies.

    January 6, 2009 at 4:44 pm |
  51. jon

    In the long term, lower gas prices are a liability. But to be honest, I like paying less and having a little more cash in my wallet!

    January 6, 2009 at 4:45 pm |
  52. Jay in Texas

    Low gas prices are a big asset to our country's economy. Giant corporations used the inflated prices of the summer to reap huge profits for themselves at the expense of "lower income Americans". Then, these giant corportations were given the hundreds of billions of dollars as a "bailout" when it was actually a way for our elected representatives to repay these corporations for buying them seats in Congress and in our government. Low gas prices result in lower costs for everything else including essentials such as groceries so, while the Wall Street tycoons and Big Oil executives are crying, those whose lives they have ruined at least have low gas prices to give them hope that things will get better.
    Brownwood, Texas

    January 6, 2009 at 4:45 pm |
  53. Eron.V

    As Pres.Bush would say.It's a scam!!

    January 6, 2009 at 4:50 pm |
  54. Alan, Buxton Maine

    Gasoline is a liability period. When I was in junior high school 50 years ago we were being warned that the use of oil based products would be a major problem in the near future and we had better find alternatives. The oil companies made sure that information got lost and here we are.

    January 6, 2009 at 4:51 pm |
  55. Annie Kraft Naples FL

    asset for as long as it lasts. But I am afraid they will be buying trucks and SUV's again not realizing prices will rise shortyl. Lower gas prices are now a help to working families, senior citizens, service personnel and job seekers. In view of the higher prices of food and electricity (funny the cost of fuel which was added in to the prices of food and electricity has NOT been lowered...) low gas prices do help a little.
    We STILL NEED OIL INDEPENDENCE. The Saudis and Iran and Iraq and Egypt etc will always control and raise oil prices. The US needs its' own oil,.

    January 6, 2009 at 4:52 pm |
  56. Harry Lansing MI

    Gas in general will remain a liability for the United States as long as it is an asset of unstable regimes who minipulate cost and production for leverage in an increasingly unstable world. The United States will only be able to consider self produced forms of energy an asset as that would be the only way to prevent foriegn interests from further eroding the economic infrastructure of this nation. It also wouldn't hurt to create a few of those GREEN jobs we have heard so much about!

    January 6, 2009 at 4:52 pm |
  57. Ken M . Millington MI

    Hello Jack. I believe that its a liability. The illusion that gas will remain inexpensive is that, an illusion. America's economy can not be held hostage by countries like Venezuela, Suadi Arabia, and Iran. All of the terroist money is generated by oil revenue. As painful as it seems the higher the cost the greater the urgencey to develop Alternative energy, which america could take the lead on and sell back to the Oil nations therefore regaining our wealth .Changing an addiction is always painful in the beginning but usually produces better rewards.

    January 6, 2009 at 4:53 pm |
  58. Bill from Maine


    There's no doubt lower gas prices helps my budget. But I disagree that this will lead to complacency about developing alternative energy sources. For one thing, the President-Elect is committed to renewable energy and will push that agenda forward. For another, we've learned the hard way what it means to be subject to the whims of OPEC as well as American oil companies and I don't think any of us want to see four dollars a gallon anytime soon.



    January 6, 2009 at 4:55 pm |
  59. Jay

    Normally I woluld be happy to see gas pices fall. But the car makers will see low prices as a oppotunity to say "Whoopeee Lets us build some more Sherman tanks and call the SUVs." And we Americans will have a contest to see whose ego is so large it has to be carried around by a Hummer.
    We get wahat we deserve and high gas prices due to gas guzzling autos will likely be our reward.

    January 6, 2009 at 4:56 pm |
  60. Diana in PA

    I look for the gas prices to continue to go higher. I'm still not driving as much or as far, because isn't funny that gas is down, but the prices at the grocery store and clothing stores haven't budged? I'm still paying double for items in all stores. We need to continue to be concerned and go green!!!!!

    January 6, 2009 at 4:59 pm |
  61. David in San Diego

    For the few months it lasts, lower prices are a small positive for the economy and for household budgets. Don't get all excited–prices will rise soon enough. They aren't fermenting any more dinosaurs!

    January 6, 2009 at 4:59 pm |
  62. Jim, from Las Vegas

    Lower gas prices are a tremendous asset right now. Besides freeing up money for other goods and services, they are also are reflected in lower costs for food and other goods that depend heavily on trucking.

    It does not remove the need for developing other forms of energy, but to use a fiscal control (i.e. taxes) to keep people from buying gas would be very contraproductive in the current economic conditions.

    We need to keep gas prices as low as possible for as long as possible. An extra $100 – $200 per month can make a huge difference when you only earn $2000/mo to begin with.

    January 6, 2009 at 5:06 pm |
  63. Denise (Lynn Haven, FL)

    Long Term – not really. It hurts the highway fund.
    Short Term – yes – it will take a while for all of us to recover from Bush.

    January 6, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  64. Joe -Colorado

    its an asset. more people are actually filling up then placing just enough to get from A to B. 30-50 bucks at a time now seems less a steal with lower prices.

    January 6, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  65. David Richards

    Lower gas prices are a tax break for millions of Americans. I just hope we learned our lesson from $4 a gallon gas and we permanently change our gas guzzling ways.

    January 6, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  66. Daniel, Indiana

    A liability, Jack. We need to do everything possible to quit burning anything in automobiles and this is playing against that. Forget the alternative fuels, they are a temporary "fix" for the "oil crisis". We need to eliminate the internal combustion engine in order to save this planet and lower gas prices hurt that necessity.

    January 6, 2009 at 5:15 pm |
  67. Weldon

    As long as the public is given a lower price on an available product, they will never consider seeking an alternative that is more environmentally friendly. How can the public be blamed for this way of thinking when they may not be gainfully employed tomorrow.

    Better to have food on the table and a roof overhead before we even consider higher costs involved with alternative enery sources.

    Definitely an asset in todays situation.

    January 6, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  68. Karen in Sacramento

    Neither. They are a reflection of the market–high when the price is being manipulated, and low when the manipulation of prices results in no demand for the product. But do not fear–Bush and his cronies got their pieces of silver while they could.

    In my neighborhood, we are already paying $2 a gallon.

    January 6, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  69. Karl from SF, CA

    They are a liability. We had low prices for decades and we polluted the air and water and drove gas guzzlers because we could. Then prices went up and we screamed bloody murder, but we are still driving the gas guzzlers. We saw those Pickens ads about alternate fuels and thought they were a good idea, but then gas prices dropped and we lost consciousness again. The only way we stupid Americans will be forced to get with the program is to price it totally out of our reach, like $1000 a gallon. Even then, I wonder if it would change anything. We are very stupid, you know?

    January 6, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  70. Jeff Crocket

    Let the market work!! All this bad mouth regarding Corporations is pathetic. Let's use our own resources no matter, and continue life!!

    January 6, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  71. Bob New Lenox

    It's a blessing that will be short lived. The oil companies are looking for any excuse to raise prices. Enjoy the lower prices while you can.


    January 6, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  72. Shmoo Cambridge WI

    Lower prices are always an asset during the holiday season and it just might be the little glue that is holding some of us together right now. Not being able to afford an efficient newer car doesn't feel so bad when you can finally afford the gas for your 20 year old four wheel drive rusted -gas- hog.

    January 6, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  73. C from Boston

    The lower gas prices are a liability. With these lower costs, people will drive more and less efficiently. This will eventually lead to the rise in prices due to increased demand. This is history repeating itself. We were warned in the 1970s with that energy crisis, but as soon as prices went down we reverted into our old wasteful ways and scrapped any implementations for ideas of alternate energy sources fuel efficient vehicles, and investment in mass transportation infrastructural enhancements. Didn't we learn anything? These lower gas prices are not here to stay and the public and our politicians should wake up and understand that.

    January 6, 2009 at 5:25 pm |
  74. angel

    I remember when Gas was .25 cents a gallon. Of course I was 18 years of age at that time.
    No, I will not tell you my current age. But I will say this that even at that time we had a dream of a future with different sources of energy and hovering cars, and planetary travel, with Earth friendly use of resources, crystals – water – wind – fire – soil – solar.
    The possibilities are endless. We only need to bring our dreams to reality.

    January 6, 2009 at 5:25 pm |
  75. ED in RI

    Bush has no claim over the lower gas prices. In fact; He did everything he could to increase consumption and make the prices rise. Remember, for instance "writing off a new Hummer in taxes for one year, while eliminating tax incentives for fuel efficient vehicles.
    The lower gas prices will obliviate any incentives in this narrow-minded country for future thoughts. The SUV's are all out in force once again.

    January 6, 2009 at 5:26 pm |
  76. Krishna Koliwad

    Lower gas prices are not good for us in the long run. But we, the people, do not look beyond the comimg weekend and so we will probably think it is good!
    LCF, CA

    January 6, 2009 at 5:27 pm |
  77. Chuck from Sheboygan, WI.

    In the long run they're a liability. Lower gas prices have dulled the sense of urgency caused by last summers $4 per gallon pain at the pump to quit driving gas hogs, to demand more efficient vehicles from manufacturers and to actually give some thought to the long term ramifications of our nations oil addiction. We forget so quickly.

    January 6, 2009 at 5:30 pm |

    Gas prices are good for the economy. It will give the automakers to make more fuel efficient vehicles and further develop AFFORDABLE alternative fuel vehicles. . It won't last for long. President elect Barack Hussein Obama plans to put additional tax on gasoline. I believe gas will soon rise to $10 a gallon but not from the price of oil but the additional taxes Obams will implement to fund research in alternate fuel vehicles. Unfortunately it will take at least 20 years or more to be energy independent. In the meantime, the poor, working and middle class will suffer. .

    January 6, 2009 at 5:32 pm |
  79. Steven Neet

    .I really don't think it will make any difference. When the Oil Barons find out about another stimulus packge proposed by Barak Obama, the prices will rise again. Where were these so-called "low gas prices" during the last stimulus package? And where were these low prices when America really needed them? The prices are low now, only because the millions of americans who have lost their jobs,have also lost their cars. Don't think they will show up at the gas station anytime soon.

    January 6, 2009 at 5:37 pm |
  80. Chris from Philadelphia PA

    They are a liability in a country with such a short memory. Gas prices are lower so fewer people care about public transit and weening us from foreign oil. Hopefully, our new President-Elect is smart enough to see through the price drop and invest in alternative fuels and increased mileage standards before the prices skyrocket again. Otherwise the oppressive pain of 5 bucks a gallon will return....

    January 6, 2009 at 5:44 pm |
  81. Linden, Tobyhanna, PA

    Gas price is not a liability to the U.S. right now, but thanks to the enemy of progress in the U.S. Israel sure is. In fact, with Israel on the dole of the U.S. taxpayers, and unilaterally starting a senseless war with Hamas, the liability could not he higher. Just remember oil has already risen more than 30% since this usless conflict started twelve days ago.

    January 6, 2009 at 5:45 pm |
  82. Rich Bedford, TX

    Both! I've yet to meet anyone (outside the oil industry) who wants higher gas prices. However, less attention means less funding for renewable energy programs. Even T. Boone Pickens is slowing his wind-corridor project. Gas will always be the U.S.'s double edged sword.

    January 6, 2009 at 6:16 pm |
  83. John Damien

    Both. Lower gas prices are a relief for the average American struggling under debt and a sour economy. However, low gas prices may not be an asset to America in the long term as we should be working toward a transition to other fuel sources, but we all know we won't do so unless forced, economically speaking.

    January 6, 2009 at 6:18 pm |