With gas prices beginning their seasonal climb earlier than ever this year, analysts are predicting record-breaking amounts of griping from oil-addicted Americans looking for a cheaper fix, but unwilling to confront and kick the habit that makes up the biggest link in the global supply chain.
Already, the U.S. political landscape has been altered by opportunists looking to seize advantage of the assumed public outrage over gas prices that have risen to $4 a gallon in some states. For some, quite apart from the fact that this represents the further pummeling of a vanishing middle class and a knockout punch to the lower, the very Presidency itself might be at stake.
It’s a long-term problem, but it requires a short term solution – at least in the eyes of the American voting public. Supply chains are long, and when they get taut it’s not always because you’ve run out of slack – although there’s certainly a lot of anxiety that that may happen sooner or later.
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For the time being though, temporary spikes in the price of gasoline can be better managed through more sophisticated supply chain techniques. Consumers should not have to shoulder this kind of burden when oil companies are posting record profits, but integrated risk mitigation has not yet been addressed satisfactorily.
Perhaps the savings from their continuously improving supply chain strategies can be passed on to John and Jane Smith, who would like to be able to get to work, please.