St. Charles Herald-Guide

$3 not that expensive for a gallon of gas

By Allen Lottinger - August 10, 2006

Letís look at it this way. You pay almost $3 for a gallon bottle of water - - H2O - - that stuff that is the most plentiful liquid in the universe.

So whatís outlandish about $3 for gasoline which we have to import from the Middle East or drill for deep into the Gulf of Mexico, then send off to refineries for separations and improvements before trucking it to the filling stations?

Expensive gasoline has been a fact of life for many years in Europe. As a result, that continent has geared its travel habits to the use of small cars and motorscooters.

Meanwhile, we Americans have geared our travel to gas guzzling SUVs. No wonder we complain when the numbers at the gas stations exceed $40 and $50 per fillup.

At $3 a gallon for regular, a price which may be topped this week, those fillups could get more expensive. Maybe itís time we start taking the Europeansí attitude.

From a selfish standpoint, Louisianians do not suffer as much from high gas prices. After all, we drill for it, produce it and sell it to the rest of the country and make money off it.

With higher gas prices in the future, our citizens can only benefit from it if we can control our desire to use it. Itís time we start thinking about that.


Politics revs up

Politics is beginning to get more of the spotlight in Louisiana.

This week, a prospective gubernatorial candidate, Republican Cong. Bobby Jindall, spoke in St. Charles Parish. And State Treasurer John Kennedy is toying with the idea of joining the Republican Party. Both are considered possible opponents of Democrat Gov. Kathleen Blanco who has announced her firm intentions of seeking re-election.

Meanwhile, Republican State Sen. Craig Romero is actively campaigning for congressman of the Third Congressional District. And Democrat Cong. Charlie Melancon, who barely beat him last time, is actively sending out information that seeks to enhance his political image.

And there are others reving up their portfolios of accomplishments as the dates for district and statewide elections gets nearer. It may be that the hurricanes prepared the way for a shift of political scenery in the years ahead.