Thursday, May 17, 2007

Gas prices: How to Bitch About It

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket
I have been contemplating how to proceed, most effectively, in voicing my discontent over high and ever-increasing gas prices. It is pretty clear, at this juncture, that the CEOs of the major oil companies and associated refineries have no intention of forgoing on massive and unequalled profits just to appease a malcontented consumer base. That Americans should have ever expected the 21st century Robber Barons to hear our cries for economic mercy, shows to our overall naiveté and collective inability to understand a common lesson from our own history. We certainly cannot turn to the political sphere for assistance as they, too, have fallen under the wily enchantments of oil money. There seems to be no one to turn to anymore.

Or, is there? Is there someone to whom we can address our dismay? Someone, who perhaps, does have the ear and attentions of the Oil Barons? We know that CEOs talk to other CEOs. They are an aristocracy unto themselves and behave as royalty. Their friendships, associations, and even recreations remain shared only amongst their own kind. They even sit on the executive boards of each other’s companies sometimes. They do talk to one another.

Now when I have to pay twice as much for my transportation as I did a year ago, it affects my bottom line, and I cannot spend as much money on recreational activities such as dining out, going to the cinema, or taking a vacation at some fancy resort. These very pleasurable and once commonplace experiences are no longer affordable due the rising costs gasoline. Sure, I can cut corners by driving less or buying a car that gets better gas mileage, but at some point I still will be paying more for my basic needs than before and that hurts my pocketbook.

This realization gave me an idea. Rather than pleading endlessly, and futilely, unto the deafened ears of criminals in Big Oil, why not write a polite letter to one of the CEOs of those other corporations whose products and services you can no longer afford or enjoy because of high gas prices?

Here is an example: (I am using Disney, but you could stick any company in there i.e. McDonalds, Star Theatres, etc.)

Dear Mr. Eisner,

Let me first congratulate you on offering a wonderful and stimulating vacation experience for millions of people worldwide. It is a truly remarkable happening. My family and I are very eager to visit your park and enjoy the myriad of rides and attractions to the absolute fullest.

However, due to the recent surge in gas prices, my family and I have had to cut back on discretionary expenditures of all kinds and, I am very sad to say, so too, must we put off visiting Disney for another time. My kids are really disappointed, but the rising cost of transportation makes such a trip impossible at this time. I hate breaking their hearts this way, but the financial realities must be considered.

I wonder how many other middle class families have to forego their vacations, some of them at your establishments, because of financial constraints due to rising energy and gas prices. It is a shame, because, for the children at least, a visit to Disney is an experience that lasts a lifetime.

Maybe we can get there next year.

Yours truly,

Mr. or Mrs. Potential Consumer

Or, should you prefer something less verbose:

Dear CEO of McDonald’s Corp.,

The convenience of having a hot cup of coffee and a tasty breakfast ready for me on my way into work each day cannot be understated. Your breakfast sandwiches are addictive! Unfortunately, due to much higher gas prices than normal, I have to choose between the tasty convenience of your delicious product and having enough money to fill my gas tank.

I don’t know how many other people are having to consider such an option, but I imagine there must be some others also financially hard-pressed due to the rising gas prices.


Mr. Consumer

If other corporations realize the impact that higher gas prices have on their bottom line then perhaps the CEO of Brand X will have a conversation with CEO of Gas Co. A, and, if all goes well, the consumer night see some relief at the pump. It does us no good, at this point, to rant and rail against the whole machine when certain parts of the machine can be utilized to dampen the effects of the other. I suspect the CEOs of Disney already imagine that higher basic living costs mean that fewer people will visit their parks or purchase their products. However, we do need to tell them so they know for certain.

1 comment:

rainawebd said...

its a given the best info...
priya services