What have we learned from Prior gas shocks?

It seems that we’ve already beaten the current gas hikes to death but since we saw similar price hikes in the past (1970’s Arab Oil Embargo) I’m wondering what changes worked, what failed and why.

For myself, increasing Domestic production protected us from supply shortages but had little effect on price so I’d give that a “B”.
I’d give increased EV development/sales an “B+”, especially for folks who already bought one, except Covid exposed our reliance on Foreign chip production so for the rest of us only I’d give it.“D”.
Likewise CAFE standards have produced remarkable developments in performance and efficiency in all vehicles so that get’s an “A” but some of that savings has been spent on inefficient vehicle designs so I’d drop that to a class average of “B”.

So what does the smartest kid in the class think and how would they prepare for the next test?

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I would say that what we have learned from every previous gas price shock (including 2008/2009) is that people wring their hands, criticize the president in power, and rush out to buy more fuel efficient cars. Once prices drop again (and they always have) everyone quickly forgets about how bad gas prices can get and they rush out to buy big SUV’s and even bigger trucks that most of them don’t need. Watch and see…


+1 to everything that bloody_knuckles stated!

Additionally, every time I see people sitting in their cars for extended periods of time with the engine idling while they play with their phones (or otherwise run the engine needlessly), I am reminded that a whole lot of people haven’t learned anything about saving money on their gas purchases. They can’t do without their A/C or their heater for a few minutes? Someone can’t really be that concerned about fuel costs if he/she does things like that.

When I was still working, I used to commute through a rural/suburban area, and there were several homes where Mommie-Dearest would fire-up her gargantuan SUV in order to drive her kid to the end of the driveway–where they would sit with the engine running-- while waiting for the school bus. These driveways were no more than 100 feet long, but apparently that was too far for their kids to walk and/or their kids couldn’t endure the rigors of the weather if they stood outside for 5 minutes or so.


I literally thought this was about gas shocks when I read the title….like, the suspension dampeners lol. So I’m not going to be the sharpest kid in class.


Now THAT made me laugh!!!

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Around 2001 when gas prices climbed to… Gasp! $1.90!! … I owned a 7.4 liter 3/4 ton Suburban that got 11 mpg highway. I was the only person in my office that said I’d like to see the price go HIGHER to get the blinkin’ trucks and SUVs off the road to make more room for ME! And so we’d make more intelligent decisions about oil use and energy production in general.

I was racing quite a bit at that time and used every bit of that 7.4 liters of Subby to pull my race car but I lived 10 minutes from work so I used very little fuel commuting. Plus I had a company car and a gas account.

If certain groups had listened to science 30 years ago and not protested the building of nuclear reactors, we’d have safer thorium nuclear reactors making nice clean electricity with far less nuclear waste (we knew about this almost 50 years ago) so we could use the electricity for cars and busses and oil for things other than fuel. Maybe GM’s EV1 might have succeeded as NiMh batteries were introduced. Maybe we could also be using natural gas for vehicles that can’t use batteries for power… like semi trucks.

In any event, we wouldn’t be arguing about solar and wind, which won’t solve our clean energy problem, only help it along a bit… Darkness and windless days being “issues” and all.


Nope. Increasing production cut prices by about half in the last several years. Had we not done that, we’d have been at $100/bbl or more before this war, so prices now would be $150+.

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Educate people to try and help them to realize that 1. the president has 0 control over the price of gas other than releasing some of the SPR 2. realize that the oil companies don’t care about anything other than their bottom line and will use any kind of upheaval as an excuse to drive up prices as much as they believe the market will tolerate

+1, my kids old soccer coach and his wife both used to work for TMI and can’t stand the anti-nuclear folks who would hyper focus on one issue and ignore the benefits for nuclear power

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Not debating what you’re saying here, because I’m the kid who thought we were going to talk about Monroe VS Gabriel or KYB, but are we certain nuclear reactors are safer than “climate change” and that the nuclear waste (whatever amount is generated) is safer than…carbon? I haven’t researched nuclear power, but just the word “nuclear” gives a lot of us a little apprehension. Obviously all of them, most of them, or possibly any of them aren’t ever going to be a Chernobyl, but half a Chernobyl certainly seems worse than even several Valdeze’s. I mean the Chernobyl folks were negligent I’m sure, technology has advanced, etc, but still. Stuff happens.

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Comparing modern reactors to Chernobyl is like comparing modern air travel to the Hindenberg…


I don’t want this to be a political issue, so let’s ignore what party did this or that, but you don’t think limiting the supply through certain legislative acts, or conversely, loosening restrictions on drilling can have ANY affect on the price of oil? That just cannot ever happen? I disagree. May need further education.

Yeah, yeah. I did say I’m sure technology has advanced, etc, etc. But there can’t be a disastrous problem with a modern reactor? Modern planes never crash? I’m not saying I’m definitely anti nuclear. I’m asking questions. And then you skipped my question on the waste. Is it still some crap you have to bury in a mountain in the desert for 1000 years and how much would there be? How enviro is it in comparison?

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You are correct. The President does not have control over the prices that the oil companies set,
but he DOES have control over the taxes imposed on these oil companies. President Clinton showed that.
“No problem, free market. Charge what you want for gas but I’m issuing an Executive Order (we have a budget crisis). For every ten cents over the average price of $2 a gallon,
I’m going to charge an extra $2 in taxes.
Solved the problem when Clinton was President.
Remember from history folks. We forget quickly.

Thorium reactors can’t go “Chernobyl” by design. Less waste and what there is can be recycled but can’t be made into bombs. Win-win-win. No carbon dioxide output. Wikipedia actually has a decent explanation.


Look to Three Mile Island and Fukushima to understand worst case situations with more modern designs. Few or 0 direct deaths, and TMI studies fail to show long-term additional deaths.


I understand, I was meaning that more as a reference to “worst case scenario”, rather than literally. Any idea what the worst case scenario would be in the event of an “oopsie”.

Is there ever going to be a scenario where I might wind up making the comment that “You wouldn’t like me when I’m angry.” :grin:

And there is no zero-risk option here. Solar and wind cannot support 100% of our needs without huge battery backup systems, which are hugely expensive and environmentally (and politically) destructive.


Understood. Just investigating which risk is greater rather than going “yay, no more climate problems”. I think that’s a wise thing to do.

As for nuclear, the US has 93 plants operating, so it’s not a new thing. France gets 70% of their electricity from 53 plants. A long history of safe operation. Fear is the enemy of nuclear power.


In the pictures of the 3 mile island event on Wikipedia…Jimmy Carter’s suit is outstanding, btw.

Appears the other reactor was shut down not long ago, apparently couldn’t compete with cheap natural gas (what I gathered from the article, not my personal opinion).

Is it an example of a “modern reactor” like we are discussing?