Has Your Income Increased 58.39% Since November of 2020? Gasoline Prices Have Increased That Much!

With Thanksgiving just a week away, many people have their minds on travel plans, to visit extended family a long way away. Fortunately for us, Thanksgiving travel means a whopping 18 miles, to my sister’s house.

Screen capture by D R Pico, November 16, 2023.

Stephanie Abrams of The Weather Channel gave us an interesting map of fuel prices across the fruited plain, and it shows just what you’d expect: in states where the government wants a deeper bite into your wallet, it’s going to cost you more to visit the relatives!

Here in the Bluegrass State, the average price as shown by the American Automobile Association is $3.037 per gallon, though the station closest to me has $2.959 per gallon for regular posted. I pay close attention to Pennsylvania, where we used to live, and the average price for regular is currently $3.607 per gallon, 57¢ higher than in Kentucky.

Kentucky is right in the middle when it comes to state taxes on gasoline, 26th in the nation at 30.10¢ per gallon, while Pennsylvania is third, charging 62.20¢ per gallon. As you’d obviously guess, the Pyrite State, California, tops the list, taxing its people.

Interestingly, Illinois, which has the second highest tax rate on fuel, at 66.5¢ per gallon, shares a birder with Missouri, with the second lowest, 17.47¢.

The Tax Foundation wrote:

While few taxpayers cheer fuel taxes, these systems work well as “user fees.” This public finance concept is a fee imposed by the government with the primary purpose of covering the cost of provided services. In general, drivers benefit from the services that their gas tax dollars pay for, like road construction, maintenance, and repair. Because gas taxes connect drivers to the costs of road upkeep, they encourage efficient road use, which helps limit congestion and the wear and tear that comes from overuse.

This would be funny, if it weren’t so pathetically wrong. I’ve had plenty of experience on the roads in Pennsylvania, and they are, in my not so humble opinion, in significantly worse shape than in Kentucky. More, Pennsylvania has a lot of toll roads, the Pennsylvania Turnpike being the most famous . . . and one of the most expensive toll roads. The toll roads, at least in theory, pay for their own maintenance through the tolls, so there are hundreds of miles of roads in the Keystone State which (supposedly) don’t use the fuel taxes for maintenance.

On November 19, 2020, the national average price for regular gasoline was $2.11 per gallon. At $3.342 per gallon now, that’s 58.39% increase in three years. Has your income increased 58.39% since November of 2020?
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