Wednesday, March 07, 2007

The island biopoly (new word I think)

I don’t know if anyone really noticed this, but during this latest round of gas price increases, there were some strange happenings. Mobil first went up 10 cents: $3.06 to $3.16. This isn’t the weird part. Normally, if Mobil goes up, Shell follows and vice versa. There is almost never a price difference at all, which is, of course, fishy. I expected to see Shell's price go up the next day, but they didn’t budge, and they didn't budge the next day, either -- to my great surprise. So, Mobil goes back down 10 cents from 3.16 back to 3.06 matching Shell. The next day (three days after the initial Mobil hike), Shell goes up eight cents to 3.14, and Mobil does the same: $3.06 to $3.14. This is where we are now on the price.

I have a friend who used to work here in antitrust and I discussed this issue once, and apparently our upstanding service station proprietors are allowed to look at the prices of their competitors, but as long as there is no collusion, the fact that the two and only two gas stations almost never have any price difference at all is perfectly ok.

You just have to love big oil. They get tax breaks from the savage Washington Republicans. They use the American military as their own personal commando unit (nice to have a big oil CEO as vice president). They kill the electric car – a great documentary by the same name, and create enough confusion on the issue of destroying the Earth so some idiots aren't sure if it is really happening. Correct that. Big oil is really just destroying human ability to live on the Earth. After the Earth purges humans, it will recover for a couple million years like some wino a day after an epic Bacardi 151 bender, and the process of human evolution can start again. I have to cut this post short as there might be something new and important on Britney's hair or Anna Nicole Smith's corpse in the news.

8 comments:

The Saipan Blogger said...

Sounds like someone had a bad day at work. Do you need a hug?

Brad, give Jeff a hug.

KAP said...

As far as I know, Shell and Mobil still get their gas from the same bulk fuel tank. That should irritate you even more.

Jeffrey C. Turbitt said...

I didn't have a bad day at all. I don't even need a hug -- especially from Brad. That inconsiderate bastard doesn't even have the courtesy to shave. I'm still chafed from the last hug.

I need the richest, most powerful country in the world to see beyond the next dollar, and I need people to stop the obsession with frivilous pop culture BS and get in the game. The CNMI and the U.S. are parallel universes of corruption installed by completely out to lunch electorates. Only the U.S. has the ability to inflict far more damage than the local version.

bradinthesand said...

Dude, how did I get mixed up in this mess? And while some might argue otherwise, hugs from me come at a premium, baby. Well, unless your name is Cinta.

Anyway, gas prices aren't a big deal for me since my company pays for all of it. Love that!

I'll care as soon as I break the Mustang back out onto the roads in the next couple of weeks.

Then I'll shed a tear or two. Funny though how I was shocked to see that gas was $1.98 and $2.08 when I got here four years ago.

The Saipan Blogger said...

I remember freaking out when it hit $2...

bradinthesand said...

hey cornbread, let's make with another entry for cripe sakes. man, your game is old.

Jeffrey C. Turbitt said...

You get what you pay for BITS.

Brad said...

You know, there is a good side to high gas prices....it starts making people look for alternatives and at the companies that sell the oil. Unfortunately, the mass population isn't able to focus on it (or anything) long enough to force much change. I'm personally hoping to have a Veggie Oil Car/Truck when I move to Saipan. Read more about those here:
http://ahobbitsholiday.blogspot.com/2006/08/vegetable-oil-cars.html