Letter to the Editor

Gas price mystery

Monday, October 5, 2009

Dear Editor,

Why? Why? Why: Why does a gallon of gasoline (super unleaded) cost $2.349 in Lexington, $2.359 in Broken Bow, and $2.499 in McCook? Is there a real mystery here?

Stan Garretson,


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  • Thank you Mr. Garretson, (still call him that since he was my professor many many years ago), for bringing up this subject.

    Last time through Hastings a week or so ago, they were at $ 2.339, $2.319 at Orshleins.

    I would really like some of the crooks in this town explain why at that time gas was 19 cents higher in McCook. Almost every town east of McCook is cheaper, Cambridge has been 8 or 9 cents cheaper for over 3 weeks. WHY?

    Well eddy boy, have to agree with you, I forgot it's that high cost of transporting it to McCook. BUT I would like the crooks aka gas station owners and or managers to explain why gas is cheaper east of here? If I am correct, Cambridge is about 30 miles farther from the North Platte fuel terminal than McCook.

    I think maybe I know......GREED! Our local distributor that has controlled the price in McCook for years should be investigated by the state, but that ain't going to happen!

    -- Posted by goarmy67 on Tue, Oct 6, 2009, at 12:42 AM
  • Local distributor? Who might do you think that is? There are local and non-local owners of gas retailers. They all watch the market and watch each other and compete against each other accordingly ~ they too have to make a living and keep their doors open. There is no "one" establishment that is controlling the prices. $2.27 to $2.31 Omaha; $2.60 to $2.65 Alliance; $2.55 McCook; $2.51 to $2.53 North Platte. The prices are all over the board across the State depending on where they purchase it, how far for transporting, etc. ~ stop whining and be thankful that they are affordable and not like the $4.00 gallon our great Pres Bush got us into.

    -- Posted by Rural Citizen on Tue, Oct 6, 2009, at 10:33 AM
  • Rural Citizen, you can defend the local gas dealers if you want and if you are so prosperous that you don't mind paying the extra money that the local greedy gas stations want. But it is a matter of greed. McCook is almost always higher than other places.

    -- Posted by mc Historybuff on Tue, Oct 6, 2009, at 12:56 PM
  • I'll whine if I want, call it complaining, ******** whatever, but it is still greed by the local and non local owners and distributors. The McCook oil cartel has been screwing the people of McCook for years. I still would like someone to explain why gas is 9 cents cheaper in Cambridge and it is 30 miles farther down the road from the terminal. Kind of blows the transportation BS out the window doesn't it? You need to wake up when you say there is no one establishment that is controlling the prices, in this town there is, and most of the managers of the chains will rarely admit it, but they have orders from their headquarters just to follow the lead of a certain station in town. I know I used to work in one of the chains. Follow the leader, to the bank with the big profits.

    -- Posted by goarmy67 on Tue, Oct 6, 2009, at 7:34 PM
  • Even in Indianola it's 2.419 a gallon. that's 8 cents a gallon cheaper and only 10 miles away. it must take at 1 cent a gallon to get it here (note sarcasm).

    -- Posted by april_n_mike on Tue, Oct 6, 2009, at 8:55 PM
  • THEN DON'T BUY IT. Travel someplace else. Waste your gas savings from $ into the time travelled. I've got to live and if it's within 5-10 cents, WHO CARES! ALL of the "oil cartel" as you say it also have bills to pay, people to employ, families to feed. They employ your neighbors, family and friends.

    -- Posted by Rural Citizen on Wed, Oct 7, 2009, at 7:53 AM
  • GO AHEAD AND PAY, rural, I could care less! Doesn't mean I have to!

    Your excuses for the oil cartel to continue to gouge the citizens of McCook, do not hold hot air, just like the higher transportation costs excuse no longer holds hot air, ......but perhaps all the hot air could be used for a big green hot air balloon. (note sarcasm, april n mike)

    I'm sure the attorney general will also be starting an investigation on the price fixing in McCook. ( again note sarcasm)

    Evidently you have more pennies to throw away than I do, rural. I have always and will continue to have to watch them, to be able to enjoy the good life of s.w. Nebraska.

    I am headed east tomorrow rural, (on business) and you can bet your sweet gas can I will fill up somewhere east of McCook, on my way home!

    -- Posted by goarmy67 on Wed, Oct 7, 2009, at 7:32 PM
  • $2.19 in Missouri..

    -- Posted by mickhaney on Thu, Oct 8, 2009, at 1:58 AM
  • Sounds to me like the "green eyed monster" has reared its ugly head. Did you ever stop to think that there is more than ONE "oil cartel" in McCook? Everyone always assumes that one controls, but in reality there are three. Technically, five places that compete against EACH OTHER trying to make a living for their employees. It's called personal money management. If you can't handle it, then you don't have a leg to stand on when speaking about others when you don't know their situation. I suggest you start worrying about yourself and not others and stop spreading this crap about ONE family trying to control the town.

    I don't like the idea of having to pay taxes, pay for my own insurance and healthcare when there are people taking voluntary cut in hours just so they can get welfare and beg the County to pay for their bills.

    why aren't you complaining about that? Why don't you just pay attention to yourself and better yourself without worrying about everyone else.

    -- Posted by Rural Citizen on Thu, Oct 8, 2009, at 9:33 AM
  • Rural

    1. Call it whatever you want. I do not like being ripped off.

    2. Look up cartel in your Webster, cartel is more than one member, that is why I called it a cartel. I am not saying one family is controlling it, but they are a heavy influence.

    3. I am more than able to manage my money, by myself, that is why I will continue to purchase gas out of town whenever I am out of town on business. As long as the prices in McCook are as high as they are, over and above other local towns, the out of town stations will get my business as I drive through their town. Saving money used to be called good money management.

    4. The leg I am standing on is from personal experience.

    5. You seem to be be an expert on telling everyone else what to do, perhaps you should run for public office, since you seem to have an answer on just about every subject that comes up.

    6. I do not like taxes but I do not continue to ***** about them all the time as you seem to do. As far as the lady asking for help, I refuse to comment on her situation, I do not know her, or all the facts on her situation, I will not judge her from a newspaper article. The article seemed to indicate that at least one commissioner was moved by her situation, and had some compassion for her, maybe he can make up for your lack of it. I was raised to have compassion for the people that are less fortunate than myself.

    One more thing about taxes, could it be that since you are not all that concerned about being ripped off on fuel, perhaps you are able to deduct all your fuel costs on your income tax?

    7. Seems like, when counting, including Mr. Garretson, you are outnumbered about 5 to 1 on feeling like we are getting ripped off.

    8. Take your own advice, your last line is a lot like the pot calling the kettle black.

    -- Posted by goarmy67 on Thu, Oct 8, 2009, at 2:48 PM
  • "I do not know her, or all the facts on her situation"...seems to me that you don't know the facts on the gas situation either. Touche

    -- Posted by Rural Citizen on Thu, Oct 8, 2009, at 4:41 PM
  • I agree with you Wondering. I am sick of being ripped off by the local gas dealers. I travel out of town quite a bit and get just enough gas here to get out of town to go where the prices are lower and I am not being gouged. The people here have been gouging us for years. When Caseys first got here everyone lowered their prices, but that didn't last too long and soon everything was back to normal...high prices.

    -- Posted by mc Historybuff on Thu, Oct 8, 2009, at 6:00 PM
  • The point is, ladies and gentleman, that greed, for lack of a better word, is good. Greed is right, greed works. Greed clarifies, cuts through, and captures the essence of the evolutionary spirit. Greed, in all of its forms; greed for life, for money, for love, knowledge has marked the upward surge of mankind.

    -- GG

    -- Posted by norm on Thu, Oct 8, 2009, at 7:54 PM
  • My suggestion is if it is so easy/profitable owning a gas station in mccook go buy 1 or more of numerous old station locations that did not see the profits you all talk about or they would be in busines including the walmart location that folded also and see how long you can stay in business pumping the low volume that is pumped in McCook vs Kearney/lincoln/omaha. MY suggestion is to do what all of us do anyway fill up in Holdrege/ kearney/North Plate (half people gasing up when i do is usually a sw/nebr plate car?) and do it going and coming back so the cartel surcharge pain is not so bad to the pocket book....I once figured out every 100,000k miles i drove i was paying the mccook cartel 1,500 extra bucks enough to be mad but not enough to open my own station but that amount each times all driving local residents a bunch of money......It is time for a community owned gas station??? all funded with pre purchased gas and cardmembership only to use i think would work ?? It has been done before in the 40's and 50s and should be easier with credit card/electronic of today vs back in time....

    -- Posted by Cornwhisperer on Fri, Oct 9, 2009, at 12:26 PM
  • Keep goin' guys, this is fun! :)

    -- Posted by jilly on Fri, Oct 9, 2009, at 6:07 PM
  • I said I spoke from experience on the gas issue on my last post, rural. (I have worked in a local station, one of the chains, know what is going on with the cartel.)Touche yourself.

    Still seems like you are greatly outnumbered with your defense of the cartel.

    Still will not comment on the lady and the county.

    I might just add a letter to your favorite word, concerning you, rural. Touched......

    -- Posted by goarmy67 on Sat, Oct 10, 2009, at 4:25 PM
  • Unless you've walked in another man's shoes, don't throw stones. You can't handle it. I'm just thankful McCook is weathering the economic crisis we've been under. We should all support each other to keep McCook alive.

    -- Posted by Rural Citizen on Sun, Oct 11, 2009, at 12:56 PM
  • I think its always amazing on a up oil market the local gas stations all move daily with the futures markets... futures up 10cents gasoline in mccook up 10 cents same day and usually by 5pm signs are changed .. But on a down market i have seen futures drop 30-40 cents for 3-5 weeks before any break on cash pricing/ greedy or what from Trenton to MCCook ....That is what state atty generals office should be looking for for Mccook/Trenton oil cartel price fixing issues or locals should document pricing daily for next year and go to CBS.60 minutes and have them come to town asking questons to gas station owners. You can get all excited but in the real world when you seen the states biggest oil/gas suppliers/along with many of Mccooks/Trenton gas stations owners on the donating money to atty generals election campaign good luck on getting anthing done and i was told this years ago and still true today.... our own former local reprentive state senator Tom Baker/Trenton owner of the new gas station in Trenton should be first in line to explain how he never did anything when questioned by many about gas price fixing in office and now he wants to run again??

    -- Posted by Cornwhisperer on Mon, Oct 12, 2009, at 2:29 PM
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