What defines gas prices and the negative impacts on America? Gasoline prices are on the rise due to several factors. Sometimes the oil refineries do not drill enough oil. Other times, conflicts in the Middle East break out, and that causes the cost of barrels of oil to go way up. A ripple effect is created because of the costs rising.
When gas prices rise, the rise in prices is usually passed on to the consumer in numerous ways, which in turn hurts the overall economy in the long run. When a person goes to the grocery store to purchase something, the price of the item may have raised since the last time because of increased transportation costs that the trucking companies try to avoid by passing them on to the consumer.
The same situation occurs everywhere in the economy. For example, fast food restaurants may increase their prices due to increased transportation costs as well. High gas prices are also affecting the ways people live. People are staying at home more and are not financially able to go on family vacations as much.
Motorcycles are becoming increasingly more popular due to their fuel efficiency and cheapness on gas. In turn, more motorcycle deaths have been reported because of increased use. Motor scooters are also becoming more popular among young people. They average about ninety miles per gallon, which is a lot more than that of a car.
The problem with using motor scooters more is that young people are more likely to get injured or hurt than in a car. At the end of President Bush’s term, he was blamed for the rising costs of gas prices. He was blamed because of the war that lasted so long in Iraq so a lot of Americans considered him responsible.
After President Obama was elected, gas prices did decrease for about a year. People thought that he was making effective changes, but then the prices started rising again. And now, they are right back where they were four years ago before he was elected. Now many Americans also blame him for the higher gas prices.
Most Americans would agree that the continuous up rise of gas prices have caused them financial hardships, and they would like some kind of relief. High gas prices in the United States are causing many Americans personal burdens that they are forced to accept. Lower gas prices help stimulate the economy, decrease motorcycle deaths, and give Americans a better quality of life overall. High gas prices are destructive to the economy, increase the amount of motorcycle deaths, and give Americans a poorer quality of life that is mostly based on survival.
Some people oppose the idea that high gas prices are negative. In the article “12 Reasons Why High Gas Prices Are Good For America,” author Ron Haynes says that “high gas prices cause families to plan their summer vacations closer to home.” This is considered good because families will have more time to have on vacation instead of on the road. However, if families start to vacation closer to home, instead of traveling far away for summer vacations then cities that depend on tourism for their main source of income will suffer.
Many people living in cities along the coastline depend on travelers to visit to be able to make their income. Without tourism, a lot of these cities would be in poverty. Also in the article mentioned above, Ron Haynes says that “high gas prices are causing some Americans to rethink (or at least reduce) their attraction to stuff.”
This could be good because Americans are buying more practical, fuel efficient vehicles. However , if Americans are spending a lot of money filling up their gas tanks, then of course they will have to think about a lot of their purchases. When Americans buy less “stuff”, the economy suffers. When the economy suffers, people lose jobs and the ability to survive. Another argument stated in the article above by Haynes was that “high gas prices are causing more people to ride bicycles or walk to work.”
This could be considered good because people get exercise, and there is less pollution in the world. However, if people are walking or riding bicycles to work, they pose a hazard to themselves and drivers. Careless drivers may not pay attention to pedestrians or bicycles riders because they are in a hurry. It would be a shame if someone died walking or riding his bike to work. Also in his article “12 Reasons Why High Gas Prices Are Good For America,” Haynes expresses that “high gas prices are helping fuel the online economy.”
This could be a good reason because it is more convenient and faster to shop online than going to the store and it does not cost any gas at all. However, when people shop online, instead of in person they lose the personal experience of being helped by an individual at the store. Store workers may also get laid off because of less in-store shoppers. Another risk posed from online shopping is identity theft. When a shopper goes to check-out online, they are asked to give out personal information, like their credit card and bank information.
Technology has gotten easier for hackers to steal that information and steal the shopper’s identity. High gas prices are negatively affecting the economy. There are many reasons why the economy is being affected by the price of gasoline. Since gas have increased everywhere, the price of other necessities has risen as well. Because prices are rising, many Americans are forced to downsize and buy less items or cheaper items than they did before.
As gas prices rise, the amount of money spent on gas rises. When more money is spent on gas, consumers have less to spend on other goods (Dhruv Grewal, et al. 18-19). Other industries are affected by high gas prices as well. Small businesses and services that are considered “extras” often go out of business because they are not top priority to consumers when they have less money to spend. Also, they have to raise their prices because their supply costs increase.
When small businesses raise costs, consumers are less willing to pay for their goods and services because they are too expensive. High gas prices affect all industries because everything is interconnected. For example, a normal service charge for a carpet cleaning company to come out to a customer’s house is approximately $80.00 for any one room cleaning. Essentially, it is not based on square footage anymore because it is based on higher gas prices.
If a carpet cleaning company has to go out of town for the job that is more than fifty miles away, then they have to add an additional fee of forty dollars for gas to get there, regardless of the size of the job. Also, companies are suffering. In the article “Gas Prices Spark Changes in Workplace,” it is mentioned that “many employers are helping workers cope with the record rise in gas prices with a mix of solutions, including cash and flexible work options…” (22).
Companies are suffering because they are spending profits to help support their workers. They are spending more money out on costs, and bringing in the same amount of revenue so they are losing money because of high gas prices. Another problem with high gas prices is that they can result from conflicts with other countries that the United States buys oil from. These countries can decide what to charge the United States because we depend on them to use their oil.
No matter what the cost is that they give us, the United States will pay it. In the article “Oil Prices, Scarcity, And Geographies Of War,” the authors give the shocking statistic that “oil reached a historical price peak of US$147.27 per barrel on 11 July 2008, a day after Iran tested medium-range missiles” (Le Billon and Cervantes 836). When another country is not happy with the United States, the people from that country will pass their anger on in the form of extremely high, ridiculous gas prices. Another issue with high gas prices is that they are unpredictable.
The profits that oil refineries receive are very unpredictable, so gas prices are too. In the article “The Very Boring Reasons Behind High Gas Prices,” the author Alastair Walling points out that “refiners’ net margins varied from a low of one cent per barrel in 1984 to a high of $2.78 in 2001” (6). People cannot predict what gas prices will be, so they do not know what to expect in the future. Increased risks, like natural disasters, can affect the price and availability of insurance issued to oil companies, which can affect the cost of gas for the consumer (Willett 15).
Oil spills can occur when drilling for oil, and they can be damaging to surrounding wildlife and to the environment. They are also very expensive to clean up, and the damage is never completely undone. When unexpected disasters happen, then gas prices rise and people are forced to pay them even though none of their income is rising with it. Another issue with rising gas prices is that they are causing more people to ride motorcycles and motor scooters, which is increasing the amount of deaths associated with riding them (Wilson, Stimpson, and Hilsenrath 1753).
Young people are choosing to ride the two wheeled vehicles because they do not have very much money and the bikes are much cheaper on gas. Young people are also very reckless drivers, and often they do not wear protective gear, like helmets. They are more inclined to wreck, and cause other vehicles to wreck, which could result in more fatalities.
This in turn causes insurance to go up because of lawsuits that come about; health care goes up because people end up in the hospital as well. Most motorcycles get up to ninety miles per gallon, which is a lot better than the average car. The average car approximately gets twenty miles per gallon. When a consumer is paying over $4.00 a gallon, they are usually going to choose the motorcycle over a normal vehicle. High gas prices will continue to be a burden on American citizens until something is implemented to keep the costs down.
High gas prices are damaging to the economy, increase the amount of motorcycle deaths, and give Americans a worse lifestyle than they are used to. The government should find new ways to drill oil in the United States to reduce our dependence on foreign oil. There are many negative impacts that high gas prices has on American citizens, and the few people that believe high gas prices can be positive have inadequate reasons for their beliefs. The negative impacts definitely outweigh the positive effects.
Dhruv Grewal, et al. “An Empirical Investigation Of The Impact Of Gasoline Prices On Grocery Shopping Behavior.” Journal Of Marketing 75.2 (2011): 18-35. Communication & Mass Media Complete. Web. 9 Mar. 2012. “Gas Prices Spark Changes In Workplace.” Journal Of Accountancy 206.2 (2008): 22. Business Source Premier. Web. 11 Mar. 2012. Haynes, Ron. “12 Reasons Why High Gas Prices Are Good For America.”
The Wisdom Journal. Web. 31 Mar. 2012. Le Billon, Philippe, and Alejandro Cervantes. “Oil Prices, Scarcity, And Geographies Of War.” Annals Of The Association Of American Geographers 99.5 (2009): 836-844. Academic Search Premier. Web. 9 Mar. 2012. Walling, Alastair J.
“The Very Boring Reasons Behind High Gas Prices.” Regulation 28.4 (2005): 6-7. Business Source Premier. Web. 9 Mar. 2012. Willett, Robert E. “Blowout Worsens Already-Bad Profit Picture For Small Gas Producers.” Natural Gas & Electricity 27.1 (2010): 15-17. Associates Programs Source Plus. Web. 9 Mar. 2012. Wilson, Fernando A., Jim P. Stimpson, and Peter E. Hilsenrath. “Gasoline Prices And Their Relationship To Rising Motorcycle Fatalities, 1990—2007.” American Journal Of Public Health 99.10 (2009): 1753-1758. Academic Search Premier. Web. 27 Feb. 2012.