So, when you're a hired flack, like I am, you have to appreciate a really good spin-doctor. (Just like you have to have a certain amount of contempt for a really lazy interviewer.)
Case in point: the latest version of an explanation for high gas prices that I heard on one of our most conservative radio stations. The woman giving the explanation was not supposed to be a flack for the oil companies, but she must have been. She gave the usual reasons, like "unrest in the Middle East." (By that token, I should have been living with high gas prices my whole life, because there has ALWAYS been unrest in the Middle East.)
She did actually give a nod to the speculators who are driving up the prices because they can. Uh, no shit.
My favorite of her explanations was by far the backhanded compliment to the gas-buyers themselves. She praised the "resilience" of the American consumer, who have managed to continue to keep buying gas, even though no one can quite figure out how. (Well, no one but Starbucks and the credit card companies and other retailers who have been affected by the downturn in discretionary spending.)
That's masterful public relations work. And, sadly, it's probably completely true. As long as we just gulp and continue to pay the price, they'll continue to hike it up. Our very willingness to pay is all the incentive the oil companies need.
I remember when we thought invading Iraq would bring gas prices down. Ha!
Hope the resilient consumers had fun shopping yesterday. We had outlet malls opening at midnight, as well as the few biggies opening at 4:00 and 5:00 am. It almost made me want to go shop!ETA:
This is entry #400 for me. And considering I've been on LJ for more than five years, that's not very impressive.