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The case for price gouging

Quantum Windbag

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Imagine a world where we actually had a free market and people could get what they need.

When I published my column making the case against legal bans on "price-gouging" in the wake of disasters, I got too primary negative reactions. Some folks were outraged that I'd be picking on this small topic amidst vast human tragedy. Others, like Chris Hayes, opined that my view was already conventional wisdom and barely counted as a Slatepitch.


But look at these photos of miles-long lines for gasoline in New Jersey and you'll see that there's a real issue here. The Christie administration fined a gas station for breaking price gouging rules back in September, and issued a press release before Sandy hit noting that case and explicitly warning retailers not to respond to the hurricane by raising prices. The failure to allow prices to adjust doesn't magically eliminate the supply side problems, it just means that the gasoline is misollacated and lots of people need to waste time in line. You can also see that the combination of shortage and underpricing seems to be leading people to overconsume when they do get to the front of the line.

Gas lines in New Jersey: The state needs more price gouging.
 

uscitizen

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The state needs generators at the 80% of gas stations without electricity but tanks full of gas.
 

occupied

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This message brought to you by the petroleum industry, proudly gouging and fixing for a hundred years.
 

uscitizen

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I wanno know why the gas companies price gouged me .40/gal for the storm?
Was 3.09 went to 3.49 overnight with the storm.
I get no oil products from the NE.
 

Plasmaball

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Ok this isnt a free market problem.....
 
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Quantum Windbag

Quantum Windbag

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Ok this isnt a free market problem.....

I know, it is a government regulation problem. In a free market there would be gas in New Jersey.
 

Plasmaball

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uscitizen

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Ok this isnt a free market problem.....

I know, it is a government regulation problem. In a free market there would be gas in New Jersey.

huh?
There is gas in NJ. the problem is that that about 80% of the gas stations have tanks of gas but no electricity to pump it.

Tell me how a free market would change that?
 

g5000

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Ok this isnt a free market problem.....

I know, it is a government regulation problem. In a free market there would be gas in New Jersey.

huh?
There is gas in NJ. the problem is that that about 80% of the gas stations have tanks of gas but no electricity to pump it.

Tell me how a free market would change that?

If you allow price discovery, then entrepreneurs would find ways to deliver gas to the affected area. You would be buying gas out of the back of some guy's truck instead of at the limited number of retailers who have power. It might cost more, but you wouldn't be waiting 4 hours in a gas line like people are now. How much is four hours of your time worth?

Since the price of gas is being suppressed, there is no profit motive for go-getters.

.
 
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Plasmaball

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I know, it is a government regulation problem. In a free market there would be gas in New Jersey.

huh?
There is gas in NJ. the problem is that that about 80% of the gas stations have tanks of gas but no electricity to pump it.

Tell me how a free market would change that?

If you allow price discovery, then entrepreneurs would find ways to deliver gas to the affected area. You would be buying gas out of the back of some guy's truck instead of at the limited number of retailers who have power.

Since the price of gas is being suppressed, there is no profit motive for go-getters.

.

um no.....
 
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Quantum Windbag

Quantum Windbag

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Ok this isnt a free market problem.....

I know, it is a government regulation problem. In a free market there would be gas in New Jersey.

huh?
There is gas in NJ. the problem is that that about 80% of the gas stations have tanks of gas but no electricity to pump it.

Tell me how a free market would change that?

Have you asked yourself why they don't have generators? Or do you just assume you know the answer?
 
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Quantum Windbag

Quantum Windbag

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huh?
There is gas in NJ. the problem is that that about 80% of the gas stations have tanks of gas but no electricity to pump it.

Tell me how a free market would change that?

If you allow price discovery, then entrepreneurs would find ways to deliver gas to the affected area. You would be buying gas out of the back of some guy's truck instead of at the limited number of retailers who have power.

Since the price of gas is being suppressed, there is no profit motive for go-getters.

.

um no.....

I suggest you take a basic course in economics before you post again.
 

g5000

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huh?
There is gas in NJ. the problem is that that about 80% of the gas stations have tanks of gas but no electricity to pump it.

Tell me how a free market would change that?

If you allow price discovery, then entrepreneurs would find ways to deliver gas to the affected area. You would be buying gas out of the back of some guy's truck instead of at the limited number of retailers who have power.

Since the price of gas is being suppressed, there is no profit motive for go-getters.

.

um no.....

Um, yes. Which would you prefer:

1. Wait in line for four hours and pay $3.85 a gallon, like people are doing now.

2. Wait in line ten minutes and pay $6.00 a gallon.


.
 

uscitizen

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I know, it is a government regulation problem. In a free market there would be gas in New Jersey.

huh?
There is gas in NJ. the problem is that that about 80% of the gas stations have tanks of gas but no electricity to pump it.

Tell me how a free market would change that?

If you allow price discovery, then entrepreneurs would find ways to deliver gas to the affected area. You would be buying gas out of the back of some guy's truck instead of at the limited number of retailers who have power. It might cost more, but you wouldn't be waiting 4 hours in a gas line like people are now. How much is four hours of your time worth?

Since the price of gas is being suppressed, there is no profit motive for go-getters.

.

Vultureism?
 

del

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I know, it is a government regulation problem. In a free market there would be gas in New Jersey.

huh?
There is gas in NJ. the problem is that that about 80% of the gas stations have tanks of gas but no electricity to pump it.

Tell me how a free market would change that?

If you allow price discovery, then entrepreneurs would find ways to deliver gas to the affected area. You would be buying gas out of the back of some guy's truck instead of at the limited number of retailers who have power. It might cost more, but you wouldn't be waiting 4 hours in a gas line like people are now. How much is four hours of your time worth?

Since the price of gas is being suppressed, there is no profit motive for go-getters.

.

yeah, because the state would have a way to chase guys selling gas out of the back of their trucks

you stick with that :thup:
 

Plasmaball

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I know, it is a government regulation problem. In a free market there would be gas in New Jersey.

huh?
There is gas in NJ. the problem is that that about 80% of the gas stations have tanks of gas but no electricity to pump it.

Tell me how a free market would change that?

Have you asked yourself why they don't have generators? Or do you just assume you know the answer?

money and laziness?
 

Plasmaball

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If you allow price discovery, then entrepreneurs would find ways to deliver gas to the affected area. You would be buying gas out of the back of some guy's truck instead of at the limited number of retailers who have power.

Since the price of gas is being suppressed, there is no profit motive for go-getters.

.

um no.....

Um, yes. Which would you prefer:

1. Wait in line for four hours and pay $3.85 a gallon, like people are doing now.

2. Wait in line ten minutes and pay $6.00 a gallon.


.

3. law and order
 

g5000

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Quantum Windbag

Quantum Windbag

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