I will admit fault for not addressing the refining capability (or lack there of) when discussing gas prices and the role taxes play in pricing. My point was not why prices were high but rather the profit being made and the negative effect upon the economy because of the prices. Looking long term it seems to me like reducing profit margins to increase sales would result in overall increased return as oppossed to the current model of reduced demand because of higher prices...I am WAY out of my league in this area and I'm sure my lack of true understanding is WAY behind the thoughts I am sharing. Do we need to lessen our dependence on foreign oil-yes, do we have the natural resources to do so-yes, do we need to deperately increase our refining capacity-YES, will politicians ever let these things happen---my guess is maybe...in a limited capacity but no where near what is really needed. There are too many interests involved that are not willing to cut into their current profit margins for longterm prospects (in my opinion). Again I am outside my element here.
Purgatory, I did read your post to the end, more than once even. Thanks for sharing your knowledge as I always look to learn more about things I am less familiar with.