Skip to comments.Children of the Spurned Nozzle
Posted on 01/07/2018 7:04:33 AM PST by Kaslin
The Great State of Oregon is not at DEFCON ONE. Nor are Beaver State residents gnashing their teeth or gnawing down their neighbors small backyard trees over a new law that went into effect last week.
Nonetheless, numerous news outfits have proclaimed:
People in Oregon are freaking out about the thought of pumping their own gas under a new law. A brand new law went into effect . . . for the Beaver State. And its sending shock waves across all 98,000-plus square miles and all 4 million residents as we speak. Some Oregonians may have to pump their own gas and people are losing their minds
Dont believe everything you read. And, for goodness sake, hang onto your mind.
For starters, Oregons new law doesnt actually require anyone to do anything new. It is the old law, which forced all gas stations throughout the state to provide full service in dispensing gasoline into vehicles. Put down that pump, pilgrimer, customer.
Moreover and unfortunately the new law only allows retailers in counties with a population of less than 40,000 . . . to have self-service gas pumps. Most Oregonians, living in cities and suburbs, will continue to be protected from the freedom to fill up their own tank . . . and pay less.
So, where did this mockumentary story Internet mocks Oregon over new self-service gas law come from?
Seems it was triggered by a Facebook post on the page of KTVL CBS 10 News in Medford, Oregon. The TV station took the freedom to pump concept an absolutely terrifying step further, asking, Do you think Oregon should allow self-serve gas stations statewide?
As George Takei likes to say: oh, my.
The social media post went viral, not surprisingly, because of priceless responses such as this: Ive lived in this state all my life and I REFUSE to pump my own gas. I had to do it once in California while visiting my brother and almost died doing it. This [is] a service only qualified people should perform. I will literally park at the pump and wait until someone pumps my gas. I cant even.
Across America, after reading such comments, we cant even . . . either.
Oregon is one of only two states New Jersey, the other where gas stations are legally banned from permitting customers to put gas in their own cars. Though New Jersey Assemblyman Declan OScanlon admitted to the New York Times that he violates the law and grabs the pump when in a hurry. Someone can come to my door and cuff me if they want.
The assemblyman has introduced legislation to allow self-service and thinks the current prohibition is indefensible: The only thing you could argue is that New Jerseyans are more flammable than people in the other 49 states.
It is 48 states, of course; Assemblyman OScanlon forgot about Oregon. But his point is well taken, nonetheless. Folks in the other 48 states have managed, as one Facebooker calmly explained, to pump gas without spilling the whole tank and triggering a Star Wars-style explosion.
Yet, in Oregon, politically, the full-service-gas-dispensing-by-law policy has found popular support both in the legislature and on the ballot. Indeed, wealthier people may enjoy the mandated service, which has grown rare to nonexistent in other parts of the country where consumers can choose to pay for it or not. No matter how popular, however, by what right does government deny gas station owners and their customers basic economic freedom?
Not to mention that the law functions as a regressive tax on the working poor, who are required to pay more of their scare dollars and cents to get to and from work and to the market and to drop the kids at school.
Still, if Oregonians so revere this regulatory regime, protecting them from the smell and the indignity of direct proximity to automotive re-fueling, why did the legislature change the law even partially?
Well, for economic reasons. Which are also safety reasons. As one might expect, gas stations across rural Oregon were closing at night, because of the labor costs of staying open. Many motorists have been more than merely inconvenienced being stranded at night in rural Oregon is a high price to pay for not having ever to hold a cold fueling nozzle.
Freer markets offer greater protection for real people . . . those not too perplexed by the prospect of pumping their own petrol.
Back in the day stations had full serve and self serve with a price difference between the two. Then consumers could (gasp) decide for themselves.
I remember many years ago my mother telling me that when she went to the butcher to some meat and Cold cuts, she always watched the butcher that he wouldn't put his thumb on the scale.
As a NJ resident driving since the early 1960s, it's all I've ever known. Let people pump their own gas and they'll blow themselves up! (You'll shoot y'r eye out, You'll shoot y'r eye out) Besides that, it would mean the unemployment line for a lot of marginal workers!*
Doesn't that law limiting the size of counties where self-pumping is permitted fall under "equal protection under the law"? Unconstitutional?
*No, I don't consider people who do that kind of work any less than myself, but a lot of others do.
When we were stationed at Fort Riley, Kansas, there was a gas station not far from were we lived off post, that was full service. I don’t remember if they had self service or not.
“Back in the day stations had full serve and self serve with a price difference between the two. Then consumers could (gasp) decide for themselves.”
Ha! Back in the day before that, you ran over the hose bell thingy and a crew came running. Pumped gas, wiped windshield, checked oil, water, battery, tires. Even if you bought just a little gas, which was well under $.50/gal. It all changed after the “oil crisis” of the Carter years. I remember the full/self service price difference, then the cash/credit difference.
But the funny thing is, gas is usually cheaper in NJ than NY with full serve there, always fill up in Jersey before heading back to the Fiefdom of Prince Andrew of the Hovel of Cuomo...
“I used work at a gas station pumping gas, but now I’m an elevator operator. The elevator is much warmer in the winter” said the man
I guess it takes all kinds
I remember those times.
A cigarette will not start a gasoline fire. It has to be an open flame. You can put a cigarette out in a puddle of gasoline. Nothing will happen.
This will trigger widespread unemployment of PhDs in Eugene.
And all those paid attendants who pumped fuel for minimum wage are out of work. I drove to CA once and when I stopped for fuel in OR and forgetting about they pump fuel I started to. An announcement over the speaker said I could be fined $2500 for doing that because of safety and all that.
Not for much longer since Huggies the Hut doubled the NJ gas taxes.
protecting them from the smell and the indignity of direct proximity to automotive re-fueling
Given that the proximities of smells and openings requires legal protection, its surprising they can wipe their own butts.
er...the CAN, can’t they? Legally, I mean....
On self-service you had to run the register - which took all of two minutes to explain. Full service we were expected to carry cash and make change in our head! Picture today's teen youth trying to do that without their smart phones. You learned to stop the pumps or top-off to the the next nearest $0.25 real quick. Hint: you can actually hear the change as the tank is getting full and stop it at a round number just before the pump shuts off automatically.
Oh yeah, back in the day running credit cards was a trip. Ran them through the paper/ink imprinting machine. We literally had a printed book of bad numbers. If someone looked sketchy or gave you a bad feeling you'd take the time to check. (never did come across one)
From those several years experience dealing with the general public I learned almost as much as I did in the college engineering program. I became amazed that some people could feed and clothe themselves without assistance - let along operate a motor vehicle to the station without killing themselves or someone else.
Buck up Oregon. Chances are the kids pumping your gas all these years didn't get any more training than I did. If we can figure it out, so can you.
Gasohol just doesn’t smell right.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.