June 02, 2004

Cry Me A River (Of Gasoline)

We're back!

Pictures from our mini-vacation to come soon (and Shelby's already written up the trip); in the meantime, here's one for car-obsessed Americans: a photo of our gas pump after I tanked up yesterday morning. Using a few simple conversions, it took me 11.95 gallons of the cheapest-grade gas to fill the tank (it was three-quarters empty), for which I paid $65.50 -- an approximate price of $5.48 a gallon. Were I back in America right now, I'm sure I'd be complaining about rising gas prices as much as any other driver, but the man or woman upset because it now costs them sixty dollars to fill up their Ford Expedition can cry me a river. (According to this page, the 2004 Expedition has a 28 gallon fuel tank; so, if they brought their behemoth over to Germany -- and I have seen a few driving around over here -- they'd be paying $153.44 to fill 'er up!)

German gas prices aren't higher than America's because the Bush-Texas-Chevron Oil Cabal has a backroom deal with the Saudis, though, or because oil has to travel across Europe from the Middle East in gallon tins carried by camelback; it's all a matter of taxes. That blue sticker on the pump -- Je Euro 73 Cent Steuern -- directs customers to Aral's web site, where it's explained how taxes make up 73% of their gas price. (It's not our fault prices are so high! Don't blame us!) An item on last night's TV news outlined how Germany's gas prices were among the highest in Europe (in their survey, only the Netherlands' were higher), and how, with the panic following recent terrorist attacks in Saudi Arabia, prices could spike up above 1.30 Euro/liter in the weeks to come.

Posted by Kevin at June 2, 2004 03:59 PM