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Vince Vitrano: Not For Broadcast



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If you hate "Big Oil" for jacking up gas prices, you must really hate "Big Dairy," because milk costs more per gallon.

I don't hate Big Oil. I would certainly rather pay less than pay more for a gallon of gas. I certainly believe gas could be $1.50 a gallon, and no oil execs would end up in the poor house. I also believe they could charge me 4 bucks a gallon, and I'd drive just as much. It's capitalism. I wonder why they don't charge me more. I don't like it. But I don't blame them.

I'm in the minority on this, it seems. A lot of people do blame big oil, in fact our State is involved in an effort to tax those companies for "excessive profits." Well then, let's tax "Big Dairy" too, because milk now costs a buck more per gallon.

Let me be clear. I don't hate Big Dairy either. I'm thrilled the hard working dairy farmers of our great State of Wisconsin are getting paid. I hope they make a ton of money. It's great for them, great for our economy. I'm for it.

Here's my question: how the heck does it cost less to put a gallon of gasoline in my car than it does a gallon of milk in my fridge?

We have to extract oil from under the surface of the earth with giant drilling operations on the other side of the planet. So somebody in Saudi Arabia drills a hole and sucks out some black gunk called oil. After a series of pipelines... refineries... a boat ride across the planet... more pipelines... some additives... and a truck ride to my local gas station, I pump out a gallon of gasoline for the national average of $2.75.

Somebody milks a cow literally down the street from us, and that costs a $3.80?

Okay... they milk the cow. The milk goes on a truck, to the dairy for pasteurization and processing. It goes into gallon jugs and after a couple of other stops I'm sure ends up on the shelf at my local grocery store, but still.

My understanding of oil, and what everyone keeps telling us, is that it's going to run out. So this finite, fossil fuel extracted from the earth on the other side of the planet... is less expensive than the renewable, natural resource of cow's milk?

Again... I'd rather pay less for both products, but I don't believe I'm entitled. The farmers are free to charge me whatever they want for milk, just as I believe the oil companies are free to charge what they want for oil, and hence gasoline.

I'm just saying the next time somebody wants to hate on high gas prices... remind them it costs more to milk Bessy than it does to suck fossil fuels out of the desert.



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