Gas prices out of line

Gas prices keep rising as vehicle owners wonder if they need to cancel their holidays. Why? Because, here in the Iraq of The North we pay upwards of $6 per gallon for gas while the detractors deflect the blame onto our governments, accusing them of excessive taxation. A quick check of the internet tells me that in Venezuela the price of gas is 11 cents a litre or under 50 cents per gallon. The cost is similar in other major oil producing nations. The media tells us that the price of fuel in these countries is so reasonable because their governments subsidize the cost. Well of course it’s a subsidy, because being a state-owned enterprise, the people, instead of the international oil cartel reap the benefits.

The irony in our situation is that between B.C. and Alberta we produce more than enough fuel for Canada’s domestic needs, while the oil conglomerate holds all of North America and Europe to ransom.

You don’t need to be an economist to realize that the devil is in the details. The oil barons become rich beyond their wildest dreams while dispensing just enough largesse to buy the loyalty of Alberta’s imported workforce. The spending spree provided by this group is enough to make that province the envy of the rest of Canada, all the while impoverishing the rest of us.

Here’s a thought; at one time we had a farsighted national government that provided the money, expertise and impetus to open up the oil sands for the nation’s use. Then, as in the dangers of living in a democracy, a newly minted Conservative government saw fit to call down the circling buzzards, selling our investment for pennies on the dollar. There is recourse, of course — but can we afford to wait another four years? Four long years to see what’s left of our country after Harper is finished with it?

H.P. Toews

Princeton