Americans constantly complain about the price of gasoline, but when compared to other countries around the world, we’ve got it easy. From Salon.com:
To be sure, $4 a gallon is more painful than $3, but in a global sense, what Americans’ pay at the pump is a bargain.
In middle-income Turkey, for example, a gallon of gas costs upwards of $10. Impoverished Eritreans pay about the same. A friend of mine in Tel Aviv tells me a gallon there fetches about $8. A gallon of petrol in the United Kingdom was up around $8.40 a gallon in March, an all-time high.
Some perspective is in order. Journalists should reinforce the reality that our driving habits influence high prices, that our global neighbors pay a lot more than we do and that as a country we have to stop perpetuating the myth that we are entitled to low gas prices.
Yes, technically this is true. I was in Ireland a few months back and gas was 1 pound a liter (which translates to roughly 8 bucks a gallon). It’s insane. Of course the difference is that most European nations have decent public transportation systems, but America’s mass transit is an inefficient mess. Also, Europeans tend to be more centralized around major cities, whereas Americans are sprawled out in suburbs througout the country. And many Europeans use bikes, scooters and minis, yet tons of Americans cling to the Hummer H2s and Ford F150s. Furthermore, Europeans seem more receptive to the idea of electric and hybrid vehicle, while many Americans still think that Priuses are for hippies and gays. And oh yeah, America gives its citizens no mandatory vacation days, so we have drive to work every single day while I’m pretty sure Europeans just siesta all week. Plus, Americans act as parachutes with their triple-XL shirts while Europeans glide though the air in their super-tight pants. So you see, it’s really apples and oranges.
Follow Tom on Twitter: @thefaketomz
Post Your Comment Below