You know, a gas station with a generator could sell a lot of
gasline in a hurry when the others go dark. As I understand
things, the government has regulated that supply and demand
pricing is no longer legal. Suppose gasoline is running
around 2.79 a galon (at present in Rochester NY area). The
power is out for a couple days. The gas station at the
corner has huge underground tanks. They spent $6,000 last
year to put in a natural gas generator, and have it wired to
the station. The manager figures he's got 2,000 galons of
gas in the ground. He's got to make that 6K back in the
next couple power cuts. So, he charges 3.79 a galon for the
fuel. The customers complain about price gouging, and the
news media picks up on the story. They run the story about
the price gouging. The store sells out of gasoline in a day,
cause they are only one who is running. The cops arrest the
guy, and the courts fine him four grand, for price gouging.
When the power comes back on, the gas station owner has a
demolition company come in and rip out the generator. Says
the generator is money loser.
So, the effect of anti price gouging laws is that the
product becomes simply and totally unavailable at any price.
Thank you, washington DC!
Christopher A. Young
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