Should price controls be imposed on gasoline?
February 29th, 2012
04:00 PM ET

Should price controls be imposed on gasoline?

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

Gas prices rose for the 22nd day in a row, inching ever closer to a national average of $4 a gallon.

According to triple AAA, the nationwide average is now $3.73 a gallon.

Gas prices are up 14% percent so far this year.

Gasoline is already topping $4 a gallon in several states including California, Alaska and Hawaii and there are reports of $5 gasoline on Long Island. Some suggest we could see gasoline top $6 a gallon.

Gas prices are mainly rising due to soaring oil prices. The market is reflecting fear that tensions with Iran will lead to a war and disrupt oil supplies.

Signs of an improving economy, growing worldwide demand and speculators have also driven oil prices higher.

We've been here before:

In the 1970s, the Nixon and Ford administrations imposed price controls on gasoline. They were reacting to rising gas prices caused by OPEC's cuts in production.

But what followed was long lines at gas stations and an artificial shortage of gasoline.

Experts say the most likely outcome of price controls is gas rationing, like what we saw almost 40 years ago.

People panicked to make sure they didn't wind up without gasoline and gas stations only stayed open a few hours a day to empty their tanks.

Since they couldn't raise prices, they would close shop after selling out.

And those who didn't want to wait in long lines bought gas on the black market at steep prices.

But as gasoline prices continue to climb and consumers feel a more intense pain at the pump, there could be pressure on the government to intervene once again.

Just today Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said she is skeptical "about the reasons for the increase in gas prices." She says it deserves "careful attention" from Congress. Good luck with that.

Here’s my question to you: Should price controls be imposed on gasoline?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

It's understandable that placing price controls on products when prices are inflated is popular, but most economists warn against such action. It interrupts the normal flow of market supply and demand. If memory serves me, Jack, they tried that in the 70's and we got gas lines that stretched for a half mile.

Fred in Menominee, Michigan:
Jack, There should be controls. Gasoline is now a necessity, not a luxury. People need it to get to work, producers need it to move products. It is a key part of our economy. And I'm tired of speculators getting rich off my unavoidable "pump-pain".

Gary in San Jose, California:
No, Jack. Price controls will not work. We need to kick our oil habit and higher prices will help move procrastinators off the fence. We have plenty of alternatives and all we need is a forcing function like higher gas prices to drive the right action.

Yes. Besides this, we need to nationalize all of the oil companies. We are driving less and producing more oil than ever before. Nationalize.

Duane in North Dakota:
We need to release oil from the reserves to scare the speculators out of the market place.

Steve in Illinois:
No, this is a perfect example where Republicans have it right (it can happen): "Let market forces work." The only way we're ever gonna get off oil imports is when it's too expensive, then we'll develop the alternatives. Easy for me to say, I don't have a job right now so don't have to drive to work but the theory is sound.

Posted by
Filed under: Gas Prices
soundoff (201 Responses)
  1. diridi

    yes, besides this, we need to NATIONALIZE all of the OIL Companies. This is caused by sheer Wall-Street Manipulation. Greed by Oil companies. Stop this. We are driving less and producing more Oil than ever before. Nationalize.

    February 28, 2012 at 1:17 pm |
  2. David R Bebeau,Springfield Missouri

    NO NO NO Jack Let the market work.The sad thing is we have learned not a thing since 1974 NOT A THING.................we have tweeked every idea that has failed and used smoke and mirrors on the people yet after almost 50 years have learned not a thing nor developed a policy to help our selves.So the answer is to have more
    rules and price controls in our nanny state...is the answer????.........................It absolutely amazes me that we are truly this stupid to think after all this time price controls are the answer.

    February 28, 2012 at 1:22 pm |
  3. Paul - North Carolina

    No, the retail price of gas should be allowed to fluctuate with supply and demand. What should be controlled is the oil futures market. If speculation was limited the price of not only gasoline but all other petroleum derivatives would stabilize. That in turn would calm inflation fears and help stabilize other consumer products as well. Sound too good to be true? It is. The GOP needs another wedge issue to have any hope of winning in November so they will immediately label any such action "job killing" or somehow link it to religious freedom. What a country!

    February 28, 2012 at 1:28 pm |

    Yes, the only problem with that is that President Obama thinks gasoline should be ten bucks a gallon so his price control won't go into effect until we are all walking to our destinations.

    February 28, 2012 at 1:30 pm |
  5. Paul From Austin Texas

    Price controls would only be a band aid on deep wound. It will not help but only delay the problem of high prices and then when do you left the controls and let the market get to the real price. It used to be a quick fix would be to drop all gas taxes federal and state to make gas cheap or cheaper. If that was done how long would it take the oil companies to get prices back up tax or no tax my guess would be not long.

    February 28, 2012 at 1:36 pm |
  6. Dr. Michael D. Knox, Tampa

    No! The biggest user of petroleum products in the world is the U.S. government. If we end our wars, the price of fuel will fall. It's time to stop killing people in other countries and devote resources to rebuilding our infrastructure and thereby creating jobs. Gas is no more important than food and healthcare. Should we impose price controls on that too? Dr. Michael D. Knox, Tampa

    February 28, 2012 at 1:42 pm |
  7. Steve

    NO, this a perfect example where Republicans have it right (it can happen) ,"... let market forces work." The only way we're ever gonna get off oil imports is when it's too expensive, then we'll develop the alternatives. Easy for me to say, I don't have a job right now so don't have to drive to work but the theory in sound.


    February 28, 2012 at 1:45 pm |
  8. Ken from California

    The price of gasoline isn’t the only thing that is skyrocketing. The Dow hit thirteen thousand the other day, when most of us are struggling with the perpetual rising cost of goods and services the market creates and profits from.
    President Nixon Imposed Wage and Price Controls in 1971. One wonders why we don’t have price control at this critical time. Most of us can't afford America anymore in this bottomless pit of profit.
    Our government and private costs are being strained beyond the breaking point. As for wage control, there is not much to freeze; workers wages have drastically fallen by leaps and bounds in the last decade.

    February 28, 2012 at 1:46 pm |
  9. American in Valparaiso Indiana

    Yes. And the speculating should be regulated so its not a money making game for investors as opposed to those that use or sell gasoline.

    February 28, 2012 at 1:49 pm |
  10. Jk from Minnesota

    Actually, there needs to be controls on the speculation in oil first. No speculating. If you buy oil, you had better have the barrels you are bidding on.

    February 28, 2012 at 1:52 pm |
  11. thom richer

    Since the near collapse of our economy we have rewarded those who caused it near failure...banks, lending institutions, oil companies, auto manufactures, and have burdened those in need of economic support...workers, labor, and taxpayers with more financial and employment woes. Cars are more expensive than ever and the auto manufacturers are making record profits off the backs of those who are in dire need of transportation just to get to work. Proof that in such a short time of "recovery" they are ripping consumers off with their inflated prices. Oil companies also making record profits off of the consumer in need of lower prices and breaks to get their heads above water. Further proving gauging and government negligence and misplaced allegiance. Banks allowed by Congress to once again entice consumers back to spending money they do not have and restoring the country back to a plastic and false economy doomed to repeat failure for the sake of profit and corporate and political greed.

    Price controls? Hell, Jack, Congress had price controls on gasoline for decades. Just in the favor of the OPEC and not the working class. Why not in the favor of the consumer for a change?

    Thom Richer
    Negaunee, MI

    February 28, 2012 at 1:56 pm |
  12. Doug Ericson

    Why not? The Government has already Nationalized the Banks, and Auto Manufacturers. They will probably start taxing it though, like they do Ciggarettes, because they can do anything they want to, and they need more money to keep, "The Good Ship Corrupton and Incompetence" afloat. Plus, as a bonus it could require subsidizing the Giant Oil
    Companies. The Government loves that kind of stuff. Doug, Pepperell, MA.

    February 28, 2012 at 1:56 pm |
  13. Randy

    Only if the oil companies drill on federal lands and the military protects their interests overseas.

    February 28, 2012 at 1:59 pm |
  14. pat in michigan

    Yes they should because there is a percieved but not real shortage.
    That being said. I have a solution to our problem.
    Divide each state in quarters. figure gas usage in each quarter. Build a refinery capable of producing enough to supply the fuel needed for that quarter of the state .Build pipeline from oil fields to the refinery. Allow all work to be done by oil companies to be tax free.
    Do this and you now have Jobs and eventualy energy independence.

    February 28, 2012 at 2:05 pm |
  15. Conor in Chicago

    I’m not sure price controls can be placed on something as economically crucial and internationally traded as oil. That said, what can be done, is Congress stepping in an writing legislation making it illegal for “non-commercial actors” to trade in oil. Simply put, if you are never going to take possession of the oil, you are not allowed to purchase it on the stock market. Something often lost in this whole oil-price debacle is that as much as half of the increase in oil prices in the last decade comes from firms, such as Wall Street firms, purchasing mass amounts of oil on the open market, hording it to artificially drive up the price, and the reselling it on the open market at a profit which raises the price. That seems like a sensible regulation to enact in order to drive down the price of oil at the pump. Of course, I’m sure CNN, FOX News, and even MSNBC can parrot out 50 “Experts” who all trade in oil to say I am full of it. Remember that when you see people in the future doing just that…

    February 28, 2012 at 2:10 pm |
  16. Bill of New Mexico

    Remember WWII?

    Price controls are artificial. Keep the price down and you run out of the product.

    Then comes rationing. And, still you may not have anything.

    Until you are ready for gasoline rationing–lay off price controls!

    February 28, 2012 at 2:10 pm |
  17. Ed from Texas

    No, but it might help to stop all this talk about going to war with Iran.

    February 28, 2012 at 2:14 pm |
  18. Annie, Atlanta

    I have a better idea. Tax the speculators on Wall Street at 98%. It's obscene what we allow these people to get away with all in the name of capitalism. This isn't capitalism. This is highway robbery, stealing from us poor slobs to line the pockets of the rich.

    February 28, 2012 at 2:14 pm |
  19. AbdulKhaliq

    No, there should be no price controls.

    Oil and gas prices are manipulated on the stock market, by opportunists who find money in manipulating the fears of investors. The recipe is as follows: Use geopolitical events, like tensions with Iran, to frighten investors into investing in an advantageous manner to the opportunists.
    Either route out the speculators or foreign policy must change or both.
    Price controls is like treating cancer with a band aid.

    February 28, 2012 at 2:15 pm |
  20. diridi

    Yes, and also Nationalize all of the Oil companies. Obama2012.

    February 28, 2012 at 2:17 pm |
  21. neverquit

    No Jack, price controls never helped anyone, we need simply to get off the oil based economy ASAP how about Hydrogen Fuel Cells using natural gas as a feedstock till mainstream the emerges. We already have hydrogen pipelines to most major cities for manufacturing purposes. How about interviewing Jamie Leigh Curtis on her Honda Clarity Fuel Cell vehicle. The time is right to make the change now!!!

    February 28, 2012 at 2:18 pm |
  22. Stacy White

    I think if you remove Wallstreet from the equation, gasoline prices wouldn't need regulated. Between them and the media constantly inflaming the crises overseas, there is no way the price of gas will go down. It's time to turn off the tap on wild speculation and fear-mongering.
    McKenzie, TN

    February 28, 2012 at 2:21 pm |
  23. Jim, Denver CO

    Price controls do not need to be put in place. What needs to be done is get the Speculators out of the business. They are the ones driving prices Up, Down, and Sideways.

    February 28, 2012 at 2:22 pm |
  24. Jeff In Minnesota

    Gasoline is already price controlled Jack, just look at the price for it every where else in the Western world. The UK and Europe pay two to three times what we pay per gallon. This is what we get for our arrogance driving gas guzzling SUVs, pickup trucks, all wheel drives and the like. If we had been treated like the rest of world, we wouldn't be in this predicament. However, the sad thing is that this is just the beginning. As oil supplies start drying up, the price of gasoline will only skyrocket as will heating oil and other petroleum products. It's not a question of "if", it's a question of "when."

    February 28, 2012 at 2:27 pm |
  25. tom bulger, Canandaigua, NY

    No. Price controls don't get to the problem.

    "WASHINGTON — U.S. demand for oil and refined products — including gasoline — is down sharply from last year, so much that United States has actually become a net exporter of gasoline, unable to consume all that it makes. (Once again, speculators behind sharply rising oil and gasoline prices, Kevin G Hall | McClatchy Newspapers)

    Taxing the mischief that speculators bring to our market is the answer. Wall Street needs oversight.

    February 28, 2012 at 2:30 pm |
  26. Noel Sivertson New Mexico

    No. Let the market control the price of gasoline. Given the shortage of oil world-wide any country that started controlling prices might find themselves having a shortage.

    I agree apologizing for the burnng of the Koran was the right thing to do. Apologies are always in order when disrespecting someone's religion.

    February 28, 2012 at 2:31 pm |
  27. Phyllis G. Williams

    Should price controls be imposed on gasoline?

    If it is within your power then do it, but "the heart of man is deceitful above all things,
    and desperately wicked" (Jeremiah 17: 9) and they will stand by and see a whole nation
    suffering and raise gas for a petty cause.

    February 28, 2012 at 2:33 pm |
  28. Bizz, Quarryville Pennsylvania

    Jack, I don't know whether price controls is the answer but something needs to be about the ever rising price of gasoline and fuel oil. Ever since Pres. Carter was in office there was calls for an energy plan and the need for new energy sources. The reason this never happens is because the oil companies carry around politicians in their pocket. They have powerful lobbyist in Washington and make large donations to campaigns. This is why I laugh when I hear Newt Gingrich saying he will lower gas prices to $2.50 a gallon. This is something you cannot drill your way out of. We have to find and use other energy.

    February 28, 2012 at 2:33 pm |
  29. james in greenville nc

    Jack, fat chance. Let's get this contraception business regulated first. Then regulate what school children bring in their lunchbox. Gas isn't really as important as the many other things government tries to regulate. Although it might be nice if they did try to regulate gas prices. Probably add several czars and tens of thousands of bureaucratic jobs to do the job.

    February 28, 2012 at 2:35 pm |
  30. Janie Wilkey

    They should have imposed control on gas prices decades ago. They need to cap at $3.00 or less. With our economy being so bad how do the POWERS THAT BE think anyone (other than the filthy rich) can afford to fill their tanks?

    February 28, 2012 at 2:36 pm |
  31. Fred Colby; Menominee, MI

    Jack, there should controls. Gasoline is now a necessity, not a luxury. People need it to get to work, producers need it to move products. It is a key part of our economy. And I'm tired of speculaters getting rich off my unavoidable "pump-pain".

    February 28, 2012 at 2:37 pm |
  32. Pete in Georgia

    Ths entire marketing of gasoline in America is a sham, a complete insult to every citizen. Our so called "government" is about as helpless as a 5 yr. old on their first day of school in this charade. The steps that should have been taken but were not 20 yrs. ago up to today leave us completely impotent. This is all the result of a spineless, deceitful, and self serving federal government.
    Beyond pathetic.

    February 28, 2012 at 2:39 pm |
  33. Olga O. Pina

    People should buy less gas and refuse to stay in their neighborhood and support the businesses there.

    I started doing this and aside from my drive to and from work, I curtailed my shopping, support and eating out at businesses that were far away from my home. I don't drive over 8 miles every day. I purchase gas every three weeks and since 2007, I have only pay $30.00 every three weeks over what I used to pay, which was $50.00 a week!

    No more. I stay in my neighborhood and support those businesses that struggle to survive. I get to know them by name and they know me by my name as well. It is great!

    Austin, Texas

    February 28, 2012 at 2:40 pm |
  34. Wilhelm von Nord Bach

    I think that the Commodity Futures Trading Commission just needs to go back to "position limits" on ALL commodities futures and the price would go DOWN. it's the speculators "chasing the rabbit" that has forced the price up rather than any "market fundamentals". the five biggest holders of crude oil futures are not even oil companies or end users like airlines or other transportation companies. they are Wall Street speculators.

    the world is swimming in oil and demand, at least in the United States, is down. and on top of that, American bases oil companies are EXPORTING gasoline, diesel and jet fuel to other countries.

    the whole "oil thing" going back to the early 1970's has been one big SCAM.

    February 28, 2012 at 2:40 pm |
  35. Paul P

    Unless they skyrocket to well beyond all time record highs, I don't believe they should. High gas prices are the best incentives governments and individuals have to foster new technology, energy alternatives and increased efficiency. We need to endure short-term pains for long term gains. Necessity has always been the mother of invention after all.

    February 28, 2012 at 2:41 pm |
  36. Olga O. Pina


    People should buy less gas and stay in their neighborhood and support the businesses there...

    February 28, 2012 at 2:42 pm |
  37. chris

    something needs to be done we are getting gouged at the pump while the oil companines make billions in record profits every quater they report their earnings

    February 28, 2012 at 2:53 pm |
  38. daniel

    Yes you can't expect the speculators and the very people responsible for the disproportunate rise in gas prices to the rise of oil prices to show restraint.The greeneyed monster has no conscious avarice is his name..

    February 28, 2012 at 2:58 pm |
  39. Ed from California

    Yes!!! Gasoline should not be allowed to be traded on the Stock Exchange in the first place, period!! We can put the blame on all of this on F.C.T.C..Commodity Futures Commodity Trading Commission, or the absolutely do nothing F.C.T.C. And the paid off by big oil Boehner/ Cantor/ McConnell..... Congress. I know Pres. Obama really has no (legal) power, but, he really needs to Nationalize an Oil Company and sell that gas for cost plus operating expenses. Say, Nationalize....... Valero.....sorry Koch Brothers. This is a disgrace!!!

    February 28, 2012 at 3:01 pm |
  40. Rick McDaniel

    The price of gas can bring this country to its knees, if corrective action is not taken, and taken, soon.

    It appears however, that is Obama's goal.......to make it impossible for people to get to work.

    February 28, 2012 at 3:01 pm |
  41. Loren

    No, the problem of the price of oil is unrestrained speculation. The money that fueled the housing bubble, that fueled the internet boom, that has fueled every speculative bubble over the last five hundred years, has landed on oil. Regulate the markets for the purpose of liquidity and not speculation and you remove the problem.

    February 28, 2012 at 3:06 pm |
  42. Russ in PA

    Price controls on gas? More economic nonsense, as that will lead to the same result it always does: reduced gas supplies and less gas available to those that need it. Why can't the media and politicians ever learn that price controls of any sort only distort the market, and cost the average person money? God help us all...

    Ron Paul in 2012... Now more than ever.

    February 28, 2012 at 3:06 pm |
  43. Cy Gardner

    There should be a special tax on the speculators. Speculators can drive the price up needlessly as much as 30% or more and in an election year I believe there are those who would do this for politcal gain. Domestic production is up. Foreign imports are down. Demand is down. This is a manufactured price spike and an industry that makes gigantic profits and STILL gets federal tax money they don't deserve should have to pay for this blatant greedy manipulation. cy from arlington, va

    February 28, 2012 at 3:07 pm |
  44. Susan UP of MI

    What should be done is curb the speculators. Better still outlaw them altogether.
    Next to lobbyists, speculators are doing the most damage to this country and the economy.

    February 28, 2012 at 3:20 pm |
  45. Larry from Georgetown, Tx

    Nope, it would destroy the American way of big business, ie. greed. Prices will come down after the election and when more people start conserving again. It's the same cycle that has been going on for decades in this country.

    February 28, 2012 at 3:20 pm |
  46. Sylvia in San Diego

    Absolutely not. However, their should be assistance provided to lower income families during the winter months to help them with their heating bills.

    February 28, 2012 at 3:22 pm |
  47. John Lake Charles, LA

    Price controls won't work Jack. OPEC controls the supply and price of crude oil while futures traders play games with oil contracts. The U.S. oil companies are already exporting gasoline because we don't buy all they produce. That way they don't have to reduce prices to make us buy more. So much for the "supply and demand" philosophy.

    February 28, 2012 at 3:25 pm |
  48. bud rupert

    It's understandable that placing price controls on products when inflated is popular with some.. But most economists are warn against such action. It inturrupts the normal flow of market supply and demand. If memory serves me Jack. They tried that in the 70's and we got gas lines that stretched for a half mile. I don't think we should tinker too much.

    February 28, 2012 at 3:28 pm |
  49. TomInRochNY

    Certainly not. Gas is energy. Energy is expensive because it is in demand. You can't run a modern economy without it. This problem of using oil to run our economy will not get any better with price controls, increased production or invading yet another country. If you want to solve the problem of expensive energy find new cheaper sources. We've tiptoed up to many solutions to solve the problem of expensive energy many times. Only to back away when oil prices went down again, but never to where they were originally. This might just be the push we finally need to solve the problem once and for all. Or, politicians can be spineless once again in the face of subsidized oil profit campaign contributions when the price starts going down.

    February 28, 2012 at 3:30 pm |
  50. David of Alexandria VA

    Absolutley not Jack. The gas lines in the 70's? been there, done that, don't want to do that again. What we need is realism from our consumers - gas prices will go up and down. If you save a little when they're down, you won;t notice the spikes as much. Now, if we had a comprehensive energy policy – long term, honest, realisitic, then maybe we could have more influence over pricing.

    February 28, 2012 at 3:30 pm |
  51. Kathie

    the oil companies are making record profits and yet we still subsidize them–unfair. it's amazing how gas already at a station suddenly increases in value even though that gas is not part of the higher oil prices paid that date. greed is good as is a monopoloy by the oil companies. stop the subsidizes, enforce price controls but washington won't do that because of the almgihty dollar.

    February 28, 2012 at 3:34 pm |
  52. Jenna Roseville CA

    Should price controls be imposed on gasoline?

    Of course price controls should be imposed. It is OUR oil, gas, water, air, etc.. Just because some company drills it out of the ground doesn't make it theirs. These CEO's don't need BILLIONS while we Americans scrape together pennies to buy gas. Maybe we are not charging these oil companies enough for their leases. Lease money should be used to subsidize the costs we are paying for our gas..

    Roseville CA

    February 28, 2012 at 3:37 pm |
  53. Karl in Flint, MI

    Some say to not regulate oil prices and the free market will take care of itself. They say when oil prices hit a certain level, we will magically go to alternate sources of energy. What is the gas pump threshold $10 a gallon or $20 a gallon? Just curious.

    February 28, 2012 at 3:38 pm |
  54. Larry Feierstein-Denver

    No price control needed, speculator control and lawsuits needed against those that drive the oil market. This is not an Arab related issue or production, simply greed.

    February 28, 2012 at 3:38 pm |
  55. ken, atlantic city, nj

    No, congress and the president should nationalize the oil supply.

    February 28, 2012 at 3:41 pm |
  56. Bob in Kansas City

    Price controls didn't work in the 70's and pulling oil out of the strategic reserve won't bring down the price long term either, what makes you think controls will work now?.....better to have a plentiful supply than the long lines and shortages from that era. I remember all too well what it was like.

    February 28, 2012 at 3:42 pm |
  57. Dennis in Florida


    Imposing price controls on gasoline is the worse possible thing that could be done. For us old folks, way back in the mid 70’s there were long lines for gas because OPEC decided to start tightening the noose on the US consumer.

    There were cries in the 70’s for better mileage cars and energy independence. Didn’t Carter form the department of energy so that the US could have energy independence?

    Now forty years later things are actually worse. Controlling the price of gas won’t help. May be when the price per gallon passes $5.00 then the clowns with gas guzzling SUV’s, big pick up trucks and similar inefficient vehicles will buy smaller higher mileage vehicles.


    February 28, 2012 at 3:42 pm |
  58. John from Alabama

    Jack: Yes, control is the right word. There should be some control over speculators of oil in the United States, but we will not be able to control speculation outside our borders. The United States should not give $ 4 billion dollars of our taxes to oil companies. We should try to produce more electric cars and trucks, and provide more tax dollars for development of mass transit. Carpooling, and one trip with many stops, rather than many trips for one stop. See, isn't control wonderful.

    February 28, 2012 at 3:44 pm |
  59. andy Lynn, MA

    I really can't believe I am about to write this but I think the oil companies should be nationalized and be under complete government control. Failing that; I would want the oil companies audited by the government, identifying where every penny is going. The oil companies are not working on alternative energy. They do nothing but make excuses for their failure in developing inexpensive, reliable alternative energy. As the Gordon Gecko characyer in the movie, "Wall Street," said, "Greed is good."

    February 28, 2012 at 3:44 pm |
  60. Duane North Dakota

    We need to release oil from the reserves to scare the speculators out of the market place.

    February 28, 2012 at 3:45 pm |
  61. Gary in San Jose, CA

    No Jack. Price controls will not work. We need to kick our oil habit and higher prices will help move procrastinators off the fence. We have plenty of alternatives and all we need is a forcing function like higher gas prices to drive the right action.

    February 28, 2012 at 3:45 pm |
  62. Michael Bindner, Alexandria, VA

    No, these don't work. Regulation needs to be imposed on NYMEX, however, to police market manipulation and make trading more visible.

    February 28, 2012 at 3:48 pm |
  63. Brian, San Diego

    Direct price controls, absolutely not. However, the actual driver of the current prices is out-of-control oil speculation, which can and should be controlled.

    February 28, 2012 at 3:48 pm |
  64. Michael "C" Lorton, Virginia

    Jack: We have become so dependent on foreign oil that price controls are to late. There is enough oil in the US that we could cut that "umbilical cord supplying oil"--it just takes someone to make that decision-–the environment is going to be here for a very long time-–if we don't do something--that will be the only inhabitant on earth.

    February 28, 2012 at 3:49 pm |
  65. Mitoosense

    No No No. Price controls destroy free markets worse than bailouts and subsidy. Stop the hoarding hedge funds who capture the markets similar to ticket scalpers. I would support rationing supply if needed. You should also note all prices are rising in the inflationary money printing and zero interest at the FED. Wake up : Zero Interest means your money is worthless!!!

    February 28, 2012 at 3:51 pm |
  66. Dave, Orlando, FL

    No. My father always said, “Give a man enough rope and he will hang himself.” So let’s give the oil companies all the rope they want. Keep in mind, nothing is happening there that has not been going on for a decade, and in a larger sense millennia. So these prices are spuriously opportunistic. When they push too far we will eventually wake up and find other ways to power our homes and businesses and make our vehicles run. I recently heard of some new technologies called solar power, wind power and these amazing panels that turn sunlight into electricity. Perhaps we should begin developing stuff like that so we can relegate these greedy bums to the trash heap and make them obsolete. Only problem with that is that none of us are smart enough to think that far ahead.

    February 28, 2012 at 3:53 pm |
  67. Rick, Medina, OH


    Despite many 'fits and starts,' gas prices are seeking a 'world price,' less transportation costs and taxes ... probably about $4.50 per gallon. It would probably surprise people to learn that the U.S. is the world's largest 'exporter' of gasoline and diesel fuel ... much of the world's refining capacity is right here, without which, oil is actually worthless!

    Medina, OH

    February 28, 2012 at 3:55 pm |
  68. Terry in Virginia

    The best price control would be if the government made speculation on gas and food illegal, but I won't hold my breath that our government would do anything to help those of us struggling every day to keep our jobs and food on our tables.

    February 28, 2012 at 3:55 pm |
  69. Gigi Oregon

    Not really...we might began by using/selling our own reserves. Think about the cost savings not buying from overseas, a less cost & efficient way. But that is not the American way, sadly to say. Like most hoarders by the time you need it...it's obsolete or a better alternative is found.

    February 28, 2012 at 4:02 pm |
  70. Gary H. Boyd

    Not unless you want to call a halt to the free enterprise system Jack. If you cap the price of gas, why not do the same for eggs, milk and bread? Price controls are the surest way to stifle investment in any business. Price controls on gas is just plain dumb.

    Gary in Scottsdale, Arizona

    February 28, 2012 at 4:04 pm |
  71. Tom in Desoto, TX

    Fortunately, in the '70's my uncle owned a service station and I could get gas anytime Price controls leads to rationing and oil companies pinching the supply to earn more profit. While no one wants higher prices, they will pay it for the availability. And if you believe Newt, gas will be at $2.50 a gallon and soon after there will be free tubs of popcorn at the movies.

    February 28, 2012 at 4:04 pm |
  72. Steve, Clifton, Virginia

    Yes, if it can be established that the market place is being manipulated and driven by greed. This was the case with the mortgage and banking industries and the entire U S economy was severely damaged by the greed and to some extent corruption. It has become crystal clear that our economy is directly connected to national security. National security by the U S Government is one of the principle responsibilities. Actions ,driven by greed or otherwise, which adversely affect our economy, and subsequently our national security, affect the Government' s ability to provide protection for all U S citizens. These actions should be regulated by Government when it is clear that free markets do not serve the best interest of U S citizens.

    February 28, 2012 at 4:04 pm |
  73. David from Midland Tx

    Yes, but it will never ever happen! The 1% will continue to fatten their pockets and the average american will continue to struggle!

    February 28, 2012 at 4:10 pm |
  74. Paulette from Dallas,PA

    Yes. Also restrictions on Gas Stations that they have to be opened regular hours. Make them for go the imense profits they made in the 70's. A friend of mine owned a gas sation at the time. I never waited in line and was told there really was no shortage but that grand profits were being made. This government needs to step up its' protection of the middle class and stop lining the wealthy's pockets.

    February 28, 2012 at 4:10 pm |
  75. Jack - Lancaster, Ohio

    Mr. Cafferty:

    No. We need to control government ...by the people. I read that someplace. Even if I was dreaming, it is a sound idea. We got troubles inside the beltway, outside the beltway, in the "sandbox" theatre and right here in River City, USA.

    February 28, 2012 at 4:11 pm |
  76. David in Mississippi

    The days of cheap fuel are gone. Price controls would only help short term and then the shock whould hit when a price adjustment was needed. Use less is the only way to control your cost.

    February 28, 2012 at 4:14 pm |
  77. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    Yes, the Government should step in and put price controls on gasoline simply because I'd like to hear the Republicans argument against it.

    February 28, 2012 at 4:15 pm |
  78. C Oliver

    Have the government pass a law, that when gas prices go over $3.00 dollars a gallon they and the state can not charge all those add on taxes, then the government would go after the speculators.
    That wishing to much when we have do nothing congress that wont even pass a bill to keep America going!

    February 28, 2012 at 4:16 pm |
  79. Creston Hood


    For starters, just eliminate ALL speculation of oil prices on the commodities trading markets. But then,
    that's a special interest with lobbyists and Wall Street influence. We could never do that!!!

    Cape Coral, Florida.

    February 28, 2012 at 4:16 pm |
  80. Nancy, Tennessee

    Gas price controls might be a good idea, but I'm not expecting this sluggish administration to do anything in a timely manner. By the time something is done, the usual high summer prices of gas will be here and we will see no relief.
    None of the politicians have a clue what's its like to spend $60.00 on a tank of gas that takes a chunk from the food budget. Oh well, who needs hamburger meat anyway! Barely can afford beans.

    February 28, 2012 at 4:19 pm |
  81. Renee Peoria,Ill

    Remember back in the 90's when Pres. Clinton tapped into the reserves to keep prices down? Why isn't Obama doing that now? I'm also still waiting to hear how the speculators get away with using unrest in the middle east as an excuse to raise prices when our two biggest importers are Canada and Mexico. Did a war start in Canada that I missed the news bulletin on? No, wait, don't tell me – Canada went to war with Mexico and there's a big conspiracy to keep it quiet! Give me a break, this is all about greed and we know it, start reigning in the oil companies AND the speculators.

    February 28, 2012 at 4:22 pm |
  82. Peter, Tarrytown, N.Y.

    Keep gas 'affordible' wont address our long term energy problems.

    Our economy runs on borrowed money. China's economy run on the money they get from the rest of the world. The can outbid us for the resources the need to support their economy. Oil companies will sell to the highest bidder.

    Carbon based fuels are finite. Their costs may go lower but it's only temporary. The demands for them worldwide is steadily increasing which continue to drive up market price.

    There will always be a need for carbon based energy. There are applications where nothing else, currently available, will work. Airplanes. Big trucks and transcontinental rail come to mind. Boats and small ships fall in that category also. Large ships can use nuclear.

    The sun won't go out for a long time. If we put 20% of our energy dollars into passive energy, solar, geothermal, wind, add to that nuclear and fuel cells. It would make them highly affordable. The economy of scale will bring down costs and the jobs created through manufacturing, installation and rebuilding our energy grid would come close to reemploying everyone currently out of work. The different geographic regions could easily incorporate different mixtures appropriate to their geology.
    Let the rest of the world fight over the steadily decreasing supply and steadily increasing cost of carbon based fuels. Biofuels have a place in this but I'm not convinced we can grow, harvest and process biomass at a scale large enough to make a real difference without drastically affecting food costs

    February 28, 2012 at 4:22 pm |
  83. Jerry in Alaska

    Just what the World Union wants Jack, more regulations, control. Tell me Jack can ya see the writting on the Wall for more control of all the World from make believe oil shortages, supposed shortages that will cause the prices of every thing to skyrocket beyond many's means to obtain the basics for life.
    Sounds like the OWO that Revelation 13; says is coming with a total control of ALL Commerce & if your not part of that Union of 1 then your out of luck.

    Iran, muslims in general believe that a world war must be started to bring forth their 12 Imam, Mahdi, messiah OWO & do ya think maybe oil could be the cause of that war which is already started? Its a control thing & food is the next thing on their list, food that will be unaffordable as oil prices rise, as well as everything else.

    February 28, 2012 at 4:23 pm |
  84. deigo2

    NO! We have done this to ourselves. While foriegn countries had the foresight to develope a better transportation grid to get their people around, we are stuck in the early 20's. If you have traveled abroad, you would know that these countries have already seen higher fuel prices for years. We are now paying the price for not developing these other forms of energy and transportation. Just think what the fuel cost will be in the next 20 years.

    February 28, 2012 at 4:26 pm |
  85. AB

    There should be some price controls in place to control potentially skyrocketing gas prices and greed on the part of oil speculators and other players in the petroleum industry. This measure should be complemented with a presidential directive to release some of our strategic oil reserves to stablize gas prices. Perhaps, some rationing is in order–people should be encouraged to conserve fuel by driving less miles and when they do drive, drive at moderate speeds–55 MPH. These three measures should keep gas prices from rising geometrically and protect economic growth.

    February 28, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
  86. Dan from Stewartstown PA

    I believe that incresing the margin on commodities speculators would do much more to stabilize the price of not only gas, but oil as well. When speculators can bet 7 cents on the dollar to bet on oil or gas futures, that means somebody is getting rich for 7 cents on the consumers' dollar. What a scam! But.. if you believe the commercials sponsored by oil, gas or coal companies, they are really helping the American economy. What a crock! Sooner or later, maybe the'll fall off the edge of Rick Santorum's flat earth.

    February 28, 2012 at 4:32 pm |
  87. Larry from Minnesota

    No, what needs to be done is to regulate the inflation created by traders. If oil was to be taken possession of before being able to resell it, would be a good start. Somebody being able to make a quick money off of such a necessary commodity at the flip of a switch is just wrong. It affects too many in a bad way.

    February 28, 2012 at 4:34 pm |
  88. D. Wilson

    No the controls need to be put on WALL STREET. Speculators are whats driving prices up more than any thing. The what if this happen or that happens. You can bet yoyr bottom dollar that when all the what if's don't happen the price still won't go down. These speculators are the same Individuals that screwed up the Housing market that is still a mess. Untill there is some kind of INFORCEABLE RULES put on wall street,theworking people are at thier mercy

    D.Wilson in Missouri

    February 28, 2012 at 4:34 pm |
  89. Rebecca from Georgia

    I think so, because even if we have tax breaks on our income it wont help much if the gas prices are over 5 dollars for low income families. They'll be force to say are we gonna get gas or food and they'll choose food. and their jobs will suffer because of it.

    February 28, 2012 at 4:35 pm |
  90. Mike in Houston, Texas

    You don't need price controls, you need regulation — you know, laws. When the markets are run as a wild-west free for all, this is what you get.

    February 28, 2012 at 4:38 pm |
  91. lynnej in nc

    Is this a trick question? This should have been done in 2008 when the greed came to a head. The oil companies like the banks should have been nationalized to make sure that the public isn't price-gouged to the point where we are choosing between gas for work and rent. This just continually shows the failure of our elected officials to act on the best interests of We, the People.

    February 28, 2012 at 4:40 pm |
  92. Mycroft Lake Travis Texas

    H, E , Double tooth pick Yes ! And I know President Obama has said there is no silver bullet, but I've got a few silver bullets. Numero Uno, Any Oil Obtained/ Drilled in Our United States of America's Public Lands and Coastal Waters, will be solely, is sold for 50 dollars a barrel to only USA citizens, in the USA. Numero 2 Finally start investigations on Big Oil Dealings and go back to when Bush took office, thats when they started their power grab. Before Bush a dollar a gallon after Bush up top over five, remember Katrina. If all fails have the military take over all Oil operations on our public lands and kick those greedy Oil Companies off. It's time to take back Our Oil America and seek criminal charges on Big Oil finally for their crimes,which in my opinion are quite extensive. Where ? in the Sam H E Double tooth pick, is Eric Holder and President, will you ever get started getting rid of Scooter Libby Justice ? Ya Know it's the reason a whole lot of us voted for ya... Mr.President.

    February 28, 2012 at 4:44 pm |
  93. Simon/Orlando

    Not unless you want to wait in long, and I do mean long lines at the pump.

    February 28, 2012 at 4:45 pm |
  94. Lamar in Charlotte

    Yes it should be capped at $3 until speculators and the media stop fear mongering war overseas. Big Oil has been beyond profitable for a long time without the consumers' interest in mind. If there becomes a shortage then that will just show how strong we as people are to come together during the crisis. People better start car pooling while alternative energy sources are advance and those bullet trains are built. I don't understand why we are producing unmanned, rocket-launched aircraft that flies at approximately 13,000 miles per hour for the military while China is making bullet trains that hit 311 mph for its citizens. Need to prioritize better.

    February 28, 2012 at 4:45 pm |
  95. RickFromDetroit

    Price controls is not the solution for rising gas prices.
    [1] The solution is to hold midnight sessions of Congress and grill the oil company executives.
    [2] Next, pass an energy bill mandating 36 MPG for cars built in model year 2012.
    [3] Once the price of gas comes down, scrap all of the policies and go back to business as usual.
    [4] When the price of gas nears $4.00 bucks a gallon again, repeat steps [1], [2], [3], again, & again, etc., etc.

    February 28, 2012 at 4:48 pm |
  96. Mr D

    As the Gipper would say: "here you go again." The "you" are the speculators playing with " their" money again. What will it take to end this investment farce?

    February 28, 2012 at 4:48 pm |
  97. BostonDan

    Oh my. Someone needs to read an economics book. What will happen if there is a price freeze? What will companies do if they cannot sell their product at a price at a particular place for what they can get in another place. Think hard. t might hurt a bit. But......they bring their product to places where they can make more money!!!! Shocker. Put price controls in place and watch the oil tankers change course and head away from the US. And to those who think the industry should be nationalized or, even better yet, run by an international government, think how wonderfully efficient government organizations are, and how wonderfully responsive they are to change and to consumers.

    February 28, 2012 at 4:56 pm |
  98. marybeth, massachusetts

    This is nonsense. "Unrest" in the Middle East isn't causing the prices of gas to skyrocket, it is the speculators who are manipulating the stock market who are doing that, all by themselves.

    I was a kid in the 1970's, and I remember the gas lines and the signs that read "no gas" that would get put out. I also remember that a lot of people stopped driving big gas guzzlers and switched to smaller, gas efficient cars. But once the "oil crisis" of the 1970's was over, people reverted to driving bigger and bigger cars, trucks, and minivans.

    Maybe gov't should try regulations first–no speculation allowed for certain commodities–gas and food. We can't control what goes on the Middle East, and I'm sure that blaming unrest in the Middle East for today's rising gas prices is just smoke and mirrors to fool the public and shift the blame. Wall Street knows the public is stupid, and they'll continue to speculate on oil to make trillions and trillions and trillions of dollars per quarter.

    February 28, 2012 at 4:56 pm |
  99. Jane in CA

    Price controls work in the short term. If supplies are constrained, which I doubt is the case now, they will make things worse by creating shortages, as Nixon found out. I would prefer to see the government build a few strategic refineries, and fire them up from the strategic oil reserves. Even if you limit the output to internal government use, the additional supplies on the public market should drive prices down. Unless they are artificially being raised by some probably illegal schemes. Mandating that all US derived petroleum be refined and offered for sale in this country would also be effective. Especially if we continue conservation and green energy solutions to reducing the total energy used domestically.

    February 28, 2012 at 4:58 pm |
  100. Wm in PA

    No, no need for price controls. Tax the petroleum products being exported. Corporations understand profit.

    February 29, 2012 at 12:56 pm |
  101. Carney in Ohio

    Is it true that some imported crude oil is refined here in the US, then sold back to countries that produced that crude oil, but lack refinery capacity? If so, why can't oil corporations sell that refined product here in the US? Or would doing so create a more plentiful gasoline supply on the US domestic market, and therefore make it more difficult to raise prices? Anybody?

    February 29, 2012 at 1:08 pm |
  102. ted

    Everyone knows that presidents control the price of gas!...right?

    February 29, 2012 at 1:15 pm |
  103. Conor in Chicago

    The reasons for the recent increase in oil are directly related to the way in which the powerful in this country prosper. Non-commercial actors, AKA, Wall Street firms, artificially drive up the price on oil futures and then dump it back onto the market at a profit. Then they purchase our Congress and our President (Bush too) and this system remains in place while we complain to no avail. Then, on top of that, the excuse firms use to drive up the price of oil is instability in the Middle East. This instability in the Middle East is caused by the Military Industrial Complex in conjunction with Oil Majors who also purchase our Congress and our President, and this system remains in place. Nothing short of riots and these Wall Street types actually fearing for their lives will change this reality. I’m not calling for riots. I’m just stating the obvious.

    February 29, 2012 at 1:22 pm |
  104. Don Desaulniers (Belleville, Canada)

    Price controls are extremely bureaucratic to enforce. Do you really want more government? America has just about the cheapest gas in the world. Other parts of the world have coped with much higher prices, and you've got to learn to do the same. Don't let the prospect of $5.00 a gallon gas distract America from a much more ominous threat, that of impending bankruptcy. Nero fiddled while Rome burned. Obama overspends outrageously while America obsesses about who wore the most revealing dress at the Oscars.

    February 29, 2012 at 1:31 pm |
  105. Michael Bindner, Alexandria, VA

    We need more rail, less traffic.

    February 29, 2012 at 1:33 pm |
  106. Gary - Woodhaven, Michigan

    The only controls that should be placed is on our politicians for not implementing any conservation or green policy since Jimmy Carter causing us to rely on unstable countries for oil; on the morals oil companies and Wall Street to curb their lack of self control and greed.

    Once again another problem that could be solved fairly rapidly if we had politicians who believed in solving the peoples' problems instead of trying selfishly to gain power through outdated absolute ideologies leading us nowhere!

    February 29, 2012 at 1:39 pm |
  107. Richard Texas

    No. The United States is exporting 3 times the gasoline then it ever has to foreign countries. There is a surplus of gasoline not a shortage. We are using less of it then the previous years. If the government attempts to manipulate the price the oil companies will simply lower the refining output. We have seen what happens when the government gets involved in private industry. The American tax payer ends up picking up the tab.

    February 29, 2012 at 1:47 pm |
  108. Greg in Arkansas

    Price controls??....why bother...
    The government is broke
    The people are almost broke (except for the 1%ers)
    Let's just give ALL the rest of our money to the oil companies....then, when no one has any money left to:
    buy gas to get to work
    buy anything from the local merchants
    buy food
    pay rent or make payments on our homes or
    purchase anything....much less create, design or produce anything that will improve society.
    We will no longer need the greedy oil companies or the speculators that are killing the economy in the name of "free enterprise" with their unchecked greed......and having ALL the money in the world will be useless because the super wealthy will still need us poor folks to do things that they can't......and we cannot afford to go to work because it will be too expensive.

    February 29, 2012 at 1:47 pm |
  109. george c paree

    Obama policy is to have high oil prices well he got it I hope loses chguck paree anderson in

    February 29, 2012 at 1:51 pm |
  110. Jerome

    We should remove speculation first and foremost. WE should also require our Auto Manufactures to make half of their new cars hybrid and another 20% full electric. This isn't new technology and has been around for decades (remember EV1) Than by making those cars affordable to MOST, oil demands will go down. OH wait oil demand DID go down and prices still increased. Cost and demand are no longer related so it's only right to limit the amount of speculation to let it back to a real supply demand model.

    February 29, 2012 at 2:06 pm |
  111. Steve,NY

    We don't need price controls. We need more oil. Guess what, we have more oil than Saudi Arabia. All we have to do is wake up Obama and all the politicians to start pumping it out of the ground. The more oil the cheaper the gas. It looks like Obama is holding back because he wants to get the price up so that everybody starts buying the Volt from GM.
    We need a real businessmen in the white house and that is a Republican President. It seems like we have a problem wth high gasoline prices when we have a Democratic President. Last one was Carter the peanut farmer. Now we have Obama, the community organizer. When will the voters smarten up and elect a real logical business oriented President. We need the Press's help here to screen a good candidate in the future. Romney is probably the best choice at the moment. Jack, keep asking the questions?

    February 29, 2012 at 2:15 pm |
  112. Shaun in UT

    The price of oil should NOT be subject to market ups and downs of Wall-Street-like speculation. The price of oil should be subject to supply and demand in the US markets ONLY. Since we have plenty of oil in America we the people should regulate the supply of oil, and the price of oil, rather than allow wars, foreign dictators, and the Wall-Street gamblers to determine it for us.

    February 29, 2012 at 2:27 pm |
  113. Ben from Boston


    I think there should be a tax on exports of all forms of energy on energy companies where the tax goes up as the price of energy in this country goes up. I think this might keep more of the energy we produce in our own country and it would lead to lower energy prices here. The tax ought to take a big bite when gas goes over $4 per gallon and an ever bigger bite as the price goes up from there. Maybe we could use the tax revenue to develop clean energy or to provide energy tax credits to consumers.

    February 29, 2012 at 2:28 pm |
  114. Ed New Freedom Pa

    Are we not asking for LESS Government intervention? Do we want the market to determine prices? If there is price fixing or speculation intervening in proper market conditions than we should be filoing criminal charges. On the left hand compaints about too much government a on the same body the right hand wants government to regualte price. OOOPS mild conundrum in consistency

    February 29, 2012 at 2:40 pm |
  115. Dan in Albuquerque

    Anything concerning prices and oil companies is open to suspicion. They have been raking in monstrous profits for years, and they will not sacrifice a penny for the good of America. There should be a very deep investigation to see if they are using mideast unrest as a pretense. If they discover wrongdoing, then is when government controls need to be put in place.

    February 29, 2012 at 2:41 pm |
  116. Jenna Roseville CA

    Should price controls be imposed on gasoline?

    You bet, there is no reason why we should pay out the nose when the oil company CEO's are making 3000+ times more than their lowest paid employees and have Golden Parachuttes in the MILLIONS/BILLIONS.

    Roseville CA

    February 29, 2012 at 2:41 pm |
  117. Larry from Georgetown, Tx

    No, I remember the long lines to get gas even though everyone knew that there was not a shortage. I rather see us conserve, drill and take the heat from the environmentalists leaving another major issue to my grandkids to sort out, just like the debt.

    February 29, 2012 at 2:42 pm |
  118. Rick, Medina, OH

    Price controls do not work. Nixon tried this approach in the early '1970's,' to little effect. The U. S. is now the largest 'exporter' of refined petroleum products in the world. That $2.50 gas Gingrich promised is getting loaded on tankers and shipped to Europe, Africa, and Asia, where they sometimes pay over $8.00 per gallon.

    Medina, OH

    February 29, 2012 at 2:44 pm |
  119. Roberta G in IL

    The futures market should be regulated or done away with completely.Grain and oil futures have been responsible for outrageous consequences affecting whole populations. Speculation that any middle eastern country will stub its toe sends the market into a frenzy and the poor 'Joe' at the pump has to pay through the nose while the futures traders and oil execs raise their glasses congratulating the 'free market'!

    February 29, 2012 at 2:53 pm |
  120. Andre R. Newcomb

    No. Something needs to be done though. I'm not so sure that our collective thinking is correct (media and public). I look upon the Middle Eastern situation as a sort of superfund cleanup. . . to remove harmful percolating hydrocarbons from environments so that 1st-born sons can again sleep upon the ground without choking from gas emissions percolating UP. With our penchant for deficit spending we are helping them to clean-up their environments by purchasing. Just look at the very responsible conduct of Riyadh in concentratin population in the central Arabian Peninsula AND desalinating & transporting pure water to Riyadh so that recharge can occur . . . thus transforming (eventually) a desert into a habitable place. This has advantages for the United States by gnawing away at the north Africa deserts (Sahara) where so much atmospheric energy rolls off the continent towards the west where so many hurricanes are born. Environmental demands ought to regulate global pricing - and I rather suspect that that might be the case in Vienna (OPEC). There are carbon sequestration needs and carbon emission demands that ought to be enforceable. By compliance AND through pricing structures. China would like to have refrigerators. Iran would like to have air-conditioners. India would like to have ambulances. Africa would like to have electricity. Demand is there. But is it healthy for the life-everlasting for so much to be thrown up into the atmosphere? And there is this very real need to care about long-term supply. Population controls are part of the picture. Cultural equity is a necessity. Can people care about 'third-world needs? I think that carbon demands might be the defining quality for distribution.

    February 29, 2012 at 2:59 pm |
  121. David in Mississippi

    You want price control, I'll give you price control. Lower the speed limits on interstates. Ban any vehicle that gets less than 40mpg. Have gas sales only on every other day. Somebody please save us from ourselves.

    February 29, 2012 at 3:02 pm |
  122. Kim , Dodge City, Ks

    We hear the same excuses a couple of times every year, it's always somebody else causing prices to rise. I find it painfully obvious that prices rise whenever summer is approaching, a pipeline leaks, a holiday is upon us, or some third world conflict makes a few speculators queazy. The supply and demand argument just doesn't work in this day and age. This is intentional manipulation, pure and simple, and those doing the manipulating know our government is too lazy and too slow to investigate or prosecute. Besides, Big Oil contributes more to campaign warchests than we will ever be allowed to know.

    February 29, 2012 at 3:04 pm |
  123. Joe Ft Walton Bch Fl

    We been hearing for awhile that Obama was a Socialist. Well its for him to prove it. Nationalize all oil companies. Will be the best Socialist Democratic countries in the world.

    February 29, 2012 at 3:11 pm |
  124. Dan from Stewartstown PA

    Happy Leap Day Jack! Let's not leap past some common sense approaches that might help. First and foremost, by order of the FTC, raise the margin percentage speculators need up front. (Remember how low margin led to a thing called "The Great Depression?" We are now exporting more gas than we use. Prohibit out of country shipments if there is a "shortage" in the USA. Maybe lastly, put in price controls, but not as a first or only step. By the way, happy Sadie Hawkin's Day.

    February 29, 2012 at 3:17 pm |
  125. Greg, Ontario

    As Donald Trump would say "Suckers!" You guys give the oil companies billions in tax loop holes and subsidies and how do they repay you? With 4$ gas? Paint that big L on your forehead Jack. There comes a time when you have to say it is against the best interests of the country to let public companies run a national resource and that time is now. America, Canada and any other country being effected like this needs to sit down with these companies and tell them it's 1$ per gallon or you loose your license and we find a way to refine it ourselves. Yes...these prices effect the entire economy and should not be in the hands of a greedy board of directors.

    February 29, 2012 at 3:19 pm |
  126. joshua

    what did bush do when gas prices started to rise when he was president? he lifted the government mandate that there be 50 blends of petroleum depending on where you live in the country. that one thing alone dropped the price and then he put leverage on the suadis to produce more oil and they did. gas prices dropped almost immediatly and stayed low until Obama was elected where they have risen steadily for 3 years. It probably didn't help us consumers when Obama promised us $5 per gallon gasoline because it would help him with alternative fuels. Good thing he didn't say $6 per gallon.

    February 29, 2012 at 3:24 pm |
  127. Charlie in New Mexico

    Good Luck with that one Jack... I can just hear the screams of "Dictator", "Socialism" etc.etc. from the GOP, Wall Street, "Big Oil companies", etc.... I can seriously forcast a "black market" for gasoline that would rival the market for illegal drugs. (And with as much violence involved.....)

    February 29, 2012 at 3:33 pm |
  128. Kevin, Chester Springs, PA

    Gas price controls? Fuhgeddaboudit. Gas price futures speculation controls? Absalootly!

    February 29, 2012 at 3:36 pm |
  129. Peter in B.C.

    Please - come to Vancouver B.C. We are currently paying the equivalent of $5.30 per U.S. Gallon. Come one come all

    February 29, 2012 at 3:37 pm |
  130. william Gibbs

    I for one believe gas prices should remain high because it will bring about innovation.I didn't say i liked the higher prices just what the effect will do.BTW has anyone reported on the refinery that's getting ready to close in south philadelphia?

    February 29, 2012 at 3:37 pm |
  131. Greg Turman


    No price controls needed on gasoline. Remember, the day after the election we will have all the pond scum gas that we will ever need,,,,,,,,,,,,and on the seventh day he shall rest.
    The whitehouse is 100,000 square feet completely surrounded by reality.
    Gregory Turman

    February 29, 2012 at 3:41 pm |
  132. Charles - San Antonio

    Let's see. You are suggesting that goverment intervention is needed to correct an economic consequence caused by the unregulated free market. That just sounds wrong on so many levels.

    February 29, 2012 at 3:52 pm |
  133. Dillon

    This is Ben Bernanke's fault, my Grand parents silver dollar buys several times more fuel then my modern paper dollar.. End the fed.

    February 29, 2012 at 3:54 pm |
  134. Karl in Flint, MI

    Until all aspects of the financial system is regulated, we are sunk. This includes banks and futures investors. Either limit their profits and jail them if they get out of hand or set a price limit and everything over that is 99.9% taxed. This is US problem, but a middle east one.

    February 29, 2012 at 3:57 pm |
  135. Jake in Omaha

    Should price controls be imposed on gasoline?

    No Jack we need to let the capitalism work. Prices will come down when people refuse to pay an arm and a leg for a tank
    of gasoline. Please not I have just dug out my old-old moped. I have this problem covered.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:00 pm |
  136. Michael, from Smiths, Alabama

    Jack, gas prices should've been capped before they reached $3 a gallon. I'm one of those Americans still looking for work, and the rising gas prices are making me more and more regret even going out to job-hunt. What also kills me is how the GOP candidates are throwing this on Obama's lap as yet another reason why he'll be beaten come November. Sorry boys, the White House does NOT control the price of gas in the United States.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:06 pm |
  137. Danny Los Angeles ca.

    Record profits year after year,taxes,EPA rules,speculation,we need some relief here this is increasing costs of everything.i live in California two hours from the central valley where most food originates one hour from the port of Los Angeles,and too close to refiners and still probably pay higher cost than most state for all of this I feel violated everyday by costs it makes me sick.i have received class action notices from almost every company I have ever done business with I'm beyond fed up.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:13 pm |
  138. Kim , Dodge City, Ks

    Why not? Wall Street already operates with price controls, they control how much you pay for gas by utilizing wild speculation and insider trading to manipulate market prices. It's the same thing, it's government endorsed, and, carries no consequences for fraudulent activities.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:14 pm |
  139. Brad from Shakopee, IL

    No. Price controls will only cause the same issues that were caused in the late 70's.

    If you want to effect price, increase supply. Think XL Pipeline, Think Offshore Drilling, Think ANWAR... or Think Depression.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:16 pm |
  140. Bob Krueger, San Diego

    No. Just tax away the unearned income from Wall Street oil futures speculation at 100%.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:16 pm |
  141. deborah ballweg Seibert, co

    Can you say "keystone pipeline"?

    February 29, 2012 at 4:16 pm |
  142. Tom Barrister

    Jack, a lot of the problem would go away if oil futures trading was banned or more strictly regulated. Let's attack the problem at its source, not at the end-user point. The government already has its nose in enough consumer affairs as it is.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:17 pm |
  143. Steve in Atlanta

    With the recent oped citing oil speculation as the primary reason for a 40%, why aren't the news organizations focussing on answers to this question?

    February 29, 2012 at 4:17 pm |
  144. Steve

    Yes there should be a czar overlooking prices on gas. The oil companies make enough anyway. But they say they are constantly using the profits for research. What research? And congress forget them about doing anything they get kickbacks anyway.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:17 pm |
  145. Alex Buscher

    No! If the government intervenes in setting gas prices we will see panic and our economic recovery will be slowed, if not reversed. The stock market will react negatively to such a major intervention by the government and consumer confidence would drop through the floor. What should be regulated is the price setting by OPEC and oil speculators. It is an embarrassment that oil companies can get away with setting oil prices based on nothing more than fear.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:19 pm |
  146. martin

    the question congress needs to answer is howcome when oil prices fall gas prices don't fall as fast as they rise when oil prices increase . . . i know the anwer, record oil company profits

    February 29, 2012 at 4:19 pm |
  147. John Lacko

    No Jack, oil should be removed from futures trading around the world. Even OPEC says that the high prices are due to speculation.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:19 pm |
  148. Brett

    Yes, and from what we've seen over the last decade energy should be nationalized because it's too critical to our nation's prosperity to allow it to fluctuate radically with a false market driven by speculators and greed. Take those oil company profits and pay off the national debt – US oil belongs to the people and so should the revenue. Stop giving our natural resources to the rich.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:19 pm |
  149. tommy simpkins

    Gas Prices should be capped. It will hurt the enconomy, as well as it is creating drastic pain for the working class.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:20 pm |
  150. Hal from NC

    If the US has the largest oil reserves in the world, more than all other countries combined, why are we not drilling for it?What are the oil companies excuses?

    February 29, 2012 at 4:20 pm |
  151. michael g (missouri)

    A large parts of gas prices is the destruction of the dollar's value. Congress needs to act to protect the currency and rein in spending. A strong dollar (and construction of thorium cycle nuclear plants) makes imported fuels cheaper.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:20 pm |
  152. Kerry

    I am for controls but then I have the luxury of time, those who don't may feel different. The oil companies have proved that their own profits far out way the health of the economy. There is no limit to the greed and any excuse will do. Government intervention is reaching a critical point, the U.S. economy is fragile enough. Time to take the bulls by the horn.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:20 pm |
  153. Kay B

    Short of nationalizing the oil companies, price-fixing or rationing, why not just enact emergency suspension of all speculation- require oil purchasers to take delivery of the oil they purchase? It would temporarily cut down the number of middlemen driving panic prices higher without disrupting market forces.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:21 pm |
  154. Nanette B, Barnum MN

    The county government I work for has controlled my paycheck for the last 4 years with no wage increase., so I see no problem with government stepping in and controlling gas prices so people like me can afford to drive to work.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:21 pm |
  155. Clifford L. Frazier

    If price controls will stop the insane price fluctuations, then the answer is yes! Here is the obvious problem. How can the dealers or suppliers keep a straight face when gas, already delivered and sitting in store tanks, can be one price in the afternoon and another price that evening? It would be one thing that all future deliveries of gasoline would have a higher price, but the gas already in the tank cannot legitimately cost one amount in the morning and another amount in the evening. That is nothing more than foolishness marrying greed.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:21 pm |
  156. Dave Roberts

    No, No, No, Economics 101 says that an artificial price ceiling below equilibrium will lead to a shortage. This would be a washed out bridge on the road to recovery, Dave Roberts Dyersburg, Tennessee

    February 29, 2012 at 4:22 pm |
  157. Marc in Toronto

    Better yet Jack. How about a Media freeze on the topic? Every time the media bring up rising gas prices Wall Street speculators have added reason to gamble that prices will continue to rise. If your not part of the solution Jack – your part of the problem.

    However, I do support a freeze on gas prices.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:22 pm |
  158. shirley estep

    End speculation and the price will drop, the prices on all goods are going up just to line the pockets of a very few.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:23 pm |
  159. Mary Hare

    It really doesn't matter what we think. The esteemed Sec. of Energy said today that the government will not intervene because we need to stop depending on oil and gasoline. Hmmm, wonder if the government is driving up the price to fit its agenda. Think about it!

    February 29, 2012 at 4:23 pm |
  160. Ed W

    Govt should stop oil companies from exporting gas. This would increase supply and reduce cost.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:24 pm |
  161. Ted

    High gas prices is good news for China.Now we will have to buy their bycyles....

    February 29, 2012 at 4:24 pm |
  162. Dean from Maryland

    You descried what happens when price controls go into place. Doesn't sound like a good idea. What would happen if they don't put price controls in place? IF the price of gas increases, demand will decrease. You will see more Hybrid sales, Alternative Energy would become cost effective, and there would be less giant gas guzzlers on the road. The crazy liberals would get everything they want, and the government wouldn't have to pay for it on credit because the businesses and people would do it on their own when it makes sense to do it. The down side to this is that the cost of everything will increase until the demand subsides. Once it does, you will see investors flee the downward trending oil and the price will once again plunge to $2 a gallon. As long as people don't return to giant SUV's, the government stays out of it, and businesses continue to rely on their alternative energy solutions they put in place during the $5/gallon period, the price (of gas and products) will stay at a reasonable level.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:24 pm |
  163. Jamcity101

    Government should not regulate gas prices unless they are deem a threat to national security. Most importantly, if corporations don't believe in government oversight, then they should neither receive tax breaks and nor bailouts. There is no such thing as "too big to fail".

    February 29, 2012 at 4:24 pm |
  164. jim, Lombard, IL

    Yes Jack they should. The rise in prices always seems to be mainly on speculation of war, hurricanes, a rise in demand throughout the world or something along these lines and when it doesn't pan out do we see the oil companies drop the price immediately? No, they take their sweet time and collect their profits and line their pockets along with their lobbyists and the politicians they donate to in order to get them re-elected.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:25 pm |
  165. Jay

    Absolutely. All the Wall Street regulations that controlled this are gone thanks to Republican Deregulation. So if Strict Pricing controls aren't put in place soon who knows how ridiculously high prices will get. Wall Street is in effect Price Gouging. Read an article by one economist recently that said the Recession we are no just beginning to get over will turn into a Depression worse than the Great Depression. That was when Iran first started their rhetoric about closing the Strait of Hormuz.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:26 pm |
  166. Mark from New Jersey

    An even better idea might be is to re-institute the rule that there should be no speculation in oil prices. Gas supplies are up and usage is down, but speculation by those who never intend to take delivery of the oil has driven the price at the pump to record levels. Those who speculate should get 1 gallon of oil, and be forced to drink it.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:26 pm |
  167. Thinkforyourself, OK

    NO. No controls.

    I am hoping that Chesapeake Energy and 3M will work together on a cheaper Nat Gas Conversion Kit.
    Nat Gas is the way to go.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:27 pm |
  168. Tom

    Price controls are not the answer. Reduce consumption. Convert vehicles to natural gas and electric. Use all alternative energies, including wind, solar, geothermal. America's dependence on oil (not just foreign oil) is extremely dangerous to our economy and our safety. We need to eliminate this dependence and let the rest of the world fight over the diminishing supply. We don't have to sacrifice the environment to do so. The government's job is to protect Americans, and they're not doing it. We have the capability to use the in-country alternatives, but the government does nothing.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:27 pm |
  169. david anderson

    No. What we should do, is pass a law that keeps American oil inside America. Our American oil refineries sell American oil to the highest bidders. A lot of our oil goes to China and India. That's what is driving up the cost of oil. Out slogan should be,
    'what's made in America, stays in America.'

    February 29, 2012 at 4:27 pm |
  170. Kevin in CA

    No, price controls don't work in the long term. However, those in the oil and gasoline futures market should be required to have the ability to actually take delivery of the product that they are speculating on. This would largely put an end to the rampant, excessive price jacking by speculators.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
  171. Dave Roberts

    in a worldwide market where supply cant meet demand who will sell to us when they can get a better price per barrel somewhere else without price controls? Price controls historically lead to shortages. Dave, Tennessee

    February 29, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
  172. Sherry M.B.A.

    There should be price controls placed on both the oil industry and the healthcare industry. I have been saying this for years. Both of these are a matter of national security and should be closely monitored by both the legislative and executive branches of the U.S. government. If price caps are not the solution, then I would even go with the U.S. Congress holding hearings with Oil executives requiring proof for the spike in oil prices on a weekly basis. Oil is purchased 30 – 60 days in advance of when consumers actually purchase gasoline at the pump or other oil by-products; in effect we are paying a premium for gasoline that was purchased at a much lower rate between 30-60 days prior. With the oil industry having over $30 US Billion in profits last year it is extremely doubtful that this is only politicking by a segment of the economy that has been out of control for years. They could be fixing the pricing of gas at the pump to determine who will win the presidential election in November 2012. It makes one wonder how many millions or even billions the oil companies could save the consumer by not paying lobbyists to leave envelopes full of cash with certain members of congress. I would even entertain the oil companies not being allowed to be a publicly held corporation OR pulling them completely off the stock market as it is a national security issue.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
  173. Gerard

    I think the govt should step in. In health care Medicare sets the standards for reimbusement. If you run an ambulance co they pay $480 + $8 Per mile. Its up to you to find a way to make that profitable. There should be a fair nationwide price established and then leave it up to the oil co to find a way to make it profitable. No matter what happens in the world the only reliable thing is record oil profits quarter to quarter. Sickning.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
  174. Lee C. - Keystone Heights, Florida

    Yes, but it would only provide relief in the short term. The real problem is the oil companies that continue to rake in enourmous profits, and do so on the backs of people like me. In addition, the government gives them subsidies which amount to 2B per year, which they clearly do not need or deserve. Here's a thought, perhaps the oil companies could lower the price of gas, and try to scrape by with profits of only 25 billion per quarter instead of the 45 to 50 billion per quarter they now enjoy.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:29 pm |
  175. Joan

    Before complaining have you taken the time to check gasoline prices in Europe. Also the President has been trying to push for high speed rail like they have in Europe and China but as usual he doesn't get any cooperation from the GOP. They like to just pour money into God forsaken wars and argue about EVERYTHING. Just put in price controls.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:29 pm |
  176. Templer

    The sad thing about rising oil prices, is that the average Joe has to make cut backs while the oil industries rake in billions in record breaking profits. Oil prices should not go over $3.00 and that's pushing it.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:29 pm |
  177. Bob Gallant

    Hi Jack,

    Bob from Portland, Maine,

    No! Absolutly not...
    If you want the price of oil to come down, do what GW Bush did in July of 2008. He removed the Executive Order Banning Off Shore Drilling his farther put in place. Oil in July 2008 was $145.00 a barrel, by December 2008 it was $30.28. If we want affordible oil, restore the FREE MARKET!

    February 29, 2012 at 4:30 pm |
  178. Mason Brooklyn, NY

    Gas prices in NYC are outrageous, but we don't need price controls, we need better alternative energy options. Not to mention get these politicians out of the oil companies pockets, and lobbyist out of Washington.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:30 pm |
  179. GeneK

    There are already price controls on gasoline, because the free market is self-correcting; just ask any republican. When the price of gas reaches the limits of sustainability, people will carpool, park their gas guzzling SUVs, take the bus, do whatever they have to do to use less. They talked about it a lot in 2008 the last time that gas was this high, but four years later half the personal vehicles on the road are still gas guzzlers. So $4.00 a gallon is clearly still not too high a price for the American driver to stomach.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:31 pm |
  180. Ignacio Ramirez

    No, we should not impose a price limit on gasoline. However, I do think it is time for the people of our great nation and their seemingly indifferent government, to pass some sort of bill to limit the outrageous bonuses/ salaries made by the owners gasoline manufacturing companies. This is where all our money is going – to a few people that are way to greedy and are completely disconnected from the everyday struggles of the average person. Have we forgotten what happened in the gulf? We need to teach these elite groups of people responsibility, accountability, and open their eyes to the reality of common people. Ever heard of undercover boss? There should be a reality show where we get these CEOs CFOs and the rest of the alphabet soup titles and make them go through a struggle. Maybe then they'll think twice before raising the cost of gasoline just to keep their outrageous salaries flowing.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:31 pm |
  181. Julian Barreras

    No price controls but insist that our oil companies sell their oil here first instead of exporting oil to other countries while our fuel prices are so high.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:32 pm |
  182. Myriam from Portland, OR

    No. Price controls have no place in a free market. Let supply and demand set the prices for gasoline and anything else. Once the government starts controlling the free markets who knows what's going to happen next. Americans need to learn to control their use of gas by consolidating trips, using more fuel efficient vehicles, walking and bicycling whenever possible, and using public transportation when it's available. This is not only good for their pocket; it is good for the environment, and their health. Maybe high gas prices is what it takes to clear the skies of our polluted cities and stop the obesity epidemic we have in the US. People need to drive less and walk more. Gas is still fairly cheap in the US. It has been more than $5/gallon in Europe for many years and their world has not fallen apart because of it.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:33 pm |
  183. Dennis Benson

    President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad opens the door and says----------BOO – Give me more money.
    Wall Street answers: OK – but not today. It's 3:01PM and the market is closed. Our speculators will be back in first thing in the morning. That's the reason. Wall Street is SO WIMPY, SO WEAK. Speculators should be strung up and dipped in a barrel of oil and taste the sting they have created by their greed.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:34 pm |
  184. Mack from Michigan

    We are a capitalist society Jack but I believe that for the welfare of our nation we must at least examine allowing the goernment to have an investment stake in the staples that allow our economy to function to the benefit of everybody. Free enterprise can function in the procurement and delivery of oil and oil based products but perhaps the government should build for profit the new refining plants this country needs. The profits generated thru these refineries could help funding in washington, and the profit margins could be lessened at times like now to help control prices at the pump. I don't think government should take over big oil, but they should maybe at least have a hand in it.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:34 pm |
  185. Kim , Dodge City, Ks

    I'll bet you a tank of gas that oil companies will again, as usual, report record profits after this latest so-called problem with Iran. Until Big Oil actually reports several quarters of large losses, I will never, ever again believe there is a supply problem.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:35 pm |
  186. Craig Henderson

    Dear Jack,

    High gas prices do some good things

    1) People tend to carpool and ride buses if fuel is high and this help prevent congestion and pollution

    2) it stimulates sales of fuel efficient cars, this is good for the economy.

    3) it would really help my project, the Avion, The only real 100 mpg car in real world testing http://www.100mpgplus.com

    People in the US freak out when it hits $4.00 but just keep buying at 3.75 . In Europe look at 7.00 to 8.00 and the cars get 40 to 50mpg

    It would better for all of us if we had a $1.00 tax added to fuel and use the money to improve infrastructure and due to supply and demand you would see the price drop.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:38 pm |
  187. Dustin in Oxford, Ms.

    Jack, it is sad that we are having this discussion 40 years after the 1st time it was brought up. This show how inept and ineffective our government really is. Shouldn't something have been done in the 70's to make sure this problem never reoccurred? Solutions like electric vehicles or tapping into the fuel supply found in the United States soil could have solved this problem, but the red tape, lobbying, bureaucracy, and general lack of interest for the economic well being of the American citizen has barricaded such solutions. Think about it, Chevrolet had a fully functional electrically operational vehicle in the 80's, and it got taken off the market. In any real time frame, this sort of technology has only been pushed for in the past decade and the problem still isn't solved! To answer the question, this shouldn't even be apart of any conversation today because it didn't fix things then, and it won't fix things now. We should look for more permanent solutions, not solutions that have already failed.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:41 pm |
  188. patrick nc

    No, need profit controls.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:41 pm |
  189. Leon Adams

    Gasoline and Diesel Fuel prices should be regulated by the Fed. Government. The prices at the pump should never exceed 30 percent of the national wage dollars rate per gallon. Driving should be a pleasure for most Americans. Pleasure driving allows for stimulation to the economy when we shop as we drive across the country.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:42 pm |
  190. Jack Dempsey

    Jack, I doubt it would do any good. I think the Goverment wants the the price of gas to be high. They want the American people Angry, Mean and Ugly so we will be happy and proud go to war with Iran! Jack From Nice, Ca.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:42 pm |
  191. Jennifer M in Winnipeg

    Gas prices in Montreal, Quebec are $1.40 per litre and are expected to be all over the country in a couple of days. There are 4 litres in a U.S. gallon ... hense we will be paying $5.60 a U.S. galllon. This whole mess just sucks!

    February 29, 2012 at 4:44 pm |
  192. Craig Henderson


    I for got to tell you that in 2010 I drove my car the avion from Canada to Mexico on 12.4 gallons of fuel averaging 119.1 real miles per gallon. But nobody really cared.

    Craig Henderson
    Guinness world record holder for fuel economy 1987 at 103.7 real miles per gallon

    February 29, 2012 at 4:44 pm |
  193. Aiyana in Austin

    Only if proof can be found that the increase is artificial and not the natural byproduct free markets. And even then it should be more a restriction on speculators the actually price control. You would think we learn and pursue alternatives since this seems go happen every few years.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:44 pm |
  194. John, San Pedro, Ca

    What about the effect of exporting of gasoline? Do we restrict free market capitalism? Does the administration need these exports to make the balance of trade numbers look good? Why don't we hear more about this aspect of rising prices?

    February 29, 2012 at 4:47 pm |
  195. Victor Castellanos

    US citizens should pay similar gas prices as Europeans. You can do that by increasing tax on ga little by little on a yearly basis. If you do that the deficit should be lower and people would use more public transportation and walk more.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:51 pm |
  196. Bill from Maine

    Look out here comes all that talk about us wanting to be socialist or something.Really were we socialist before Ronald Reagan? I mean he was the one who said we could stabilize the oil prices by deregulating the oil industry . WHAT a CON!

    February 29, 2012 at 4:55 pm |
  197. Leon Adams

    Confidence in the economy can not exist where gas prices may vary at will by those that are willing to hold Americans hostage at the gas pump. There are no solid reasons why gas prices should be so high. We have refineries that are not being used, land approved for exploration and drilling not being tapped, reserves that are not being used for this crisis, etc. Plus, lack of aggressiveness for renewal energy application and consumption.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:56 pm |
  198. Keith, Wendell, MN

    It is not just Wall Street that is the problem. Crude oil prices are determined on a “futures” market at the NYMEX or ICE (Intercontinental Exchange). Traders need only put down a small fraction of the price to control a larger amount of futures contracts (leverage). The oil futures market is now dominated by speculators (70% versus 30% a decade ago) who never intend to take delivery of any crude oil. Not only should speculators be required to put at least 50% down, but there should also be limits on the amount of oil that speculators could trade in the energy futures market. Time was that prices were determined by supply and demand. Trading futures and allowing speculation has added an expensive middleman which costs consumers (both here and worldwide) dearly.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:57 pm |
  199. DT - Saint Paul, MN

    No not at all. Let the price go sky high. This is the same thing Enron did. They keep production at low levels and inflate the price to 3 times what it should be. You inflate oil prices, people pay too much, they demand electric cars, game over. The answer isn't to try and get more oil. That's how they stay in control. The answer is no oil.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:58 pm |
  200. John

    I think the government needs to step in. After giving the big oil companies $22 million dollars in tax loopholes and with big oil making record profits, then congress should step in to help taxpayers out. Just when it seems the economy is picking up big oil needs to raise gas prices? It seems a economy on the mend is a threat to the big oil companies agenda in removing President Obama from office.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:58 pm |
  201. Richard Martin, Tennessee

    Price controls have NEVER worked. We've got major problems with supports on sugar right now; and our support of cotton is ruining our relationship with Egypt (who's small farmers supply much higher quality cotton).

    And I'm absolutely shocked at the left-wing, communistic comments I'm seeing here: Nationalize an industry? Maybe people should see what's happening in Venezuela under the Chavenistas. And no, I'm not some ranting "right-wing" whatever. I just believe in democracy and proper business-oriented capitalism (not necessarily what Wall Street occasionally does).

    But it's too late for that now. We're seeing so much communism and socialism in our society under the current administration (as well as earlier ones) I'm not sure it can be rectified before we crash and burn.

    February 29, 2012 at 4:59 pm |