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This article on NewsWeek has a valid point about the current media storm about high oil prices: Nominal vs. Real News. People care because of perceptions. Gas prices haven’t risen enough to really affect anyone’s behaviour yet, although that may not be true for long. If people actually thought about what’s going on there’s no real good point they can make for why oil prices should come down again. It’s supply and demand.
The only reason the government cares is because of the perception that the people care. Even though they know it’s pretty ridiculous they have to seem like they’re doing something. I’m sure this is a pretty hard problem at the white house right now. Even though I don’t like Bush I do appreciate his predicament here. I just wish he’d take the good stance instead of the easy/lazy one to patronize the masses.