CBS Suggests Government Subsidies to Lower Gas Prices
CBSâ€™s â€śEarly Showâ€ť co-host Maggie Rodriguez suggested June 25 that the cure to high gas prices is to have the government subsidize oil. After blaming speculators for the prices, Rodiguez asked, â€śGiven the dire situation here in our country, can't our government step in?â€ť
Correspondent Sheila MacVicar reported that â€śgetting behind the wheel feels like an outrageous extravaganceâ€ť in some countries in Europe where gas is near $10 a gallon. Much of that, she pointed out, goes to governments that levy high taxes on gas.
â€śThere are some places where gas is still a bargain. Countries that produce oil and subsidize the cost for domestic consumption,â€ť said Rodriguez. â€śSo in Mexico, filling up at $2 a gallon doesn't feel so bad. Or in Iraq and Saudi Arabia, where the price is $1.50. Iran, $1.20. The best bargain of all, oil-rich Venezuela, 15 cents. 15 cents a gallon.â€ť
Rodriguez said these other countries are â€śdoing a much better job of keeping their prices in check.â€ť
â€śCan't our government step in and stop listening to the lobbyists and stop arguing about the role of speculators and do something substantive to bring down our prices?â€ť she asked.
MacVicarâ€™s report also featured oil analyst John Hall, who said speculators are â€śvery much to blame for the increased cost weâ€™ve seen in the last year so.â€ť
Alan Reynolds, a senior fellow with the Cato Institute, wrote in The New York Post June 20 that â€śthe urge to blame speculators is as big a waste of time as blaming oil companies. Americans want more oil and gas â€“ not more hot air from politicians.â€ť