I'm sure it's happening elsewhere, but if you don't know about the unbelievable gasoline prices and shortages (because of people buying en masse and in panic, not because of actual stock shortages originally in the area) in southwestern Virginia right now, check out this article first from the Roanoke Times:
"Region's gas prices surge"
I personally saw a Valero station (on U.S. 460 Business between Blacksburg and Christiansburg) that had gas for $4.58. Yes, for regular unleaded. I pulled into a BP to get some $3.78 gas, but the pump had a sign that read "out of stock" attached to it. Before getting on U.S. 460, I had attempted to get fuel from either the Marathon or 7-Eleven on Tom's Creek Road near my apartment, but the lines were backed out into the main road.
I decided to wait until after seeing a movie to get gas this evening.
After the film, every station was either closed or only selling premium. Finally, after driving station to station, I found that the Citgo on Main Street in downtown Blacksburg had regular gas for $3.69. Still higher than it was earlier today, yesterday or earlier this week (and a heck of a lot higher than it should ever be, but that's a story for another day).
I just want everyone out there to be sure to write President George W. Bush and Sen. John McCain a thank you note today, thanking them for leading our government in efforts to find alternative energy sources. Perhaps also ask them to thank their big-business, oil-tycoon buddies for the outrageous gas prices and blatant price gouging going on in America. If the oil tycoons and lobbyists run McCain's campaign (and they do, check out his staff's backgrounds), do you really think gas prices and the economy as a whole will get better for the average, everyday American if McCain is elected?