Jeff Caplan’s Minute of News: Gas lines remind me of the 70s

Mar 9, 2022, 12:23 PM

Gas lines caused by rising prices....

Rising prices are causing lines at gas stations. AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes.

Editor’s note: This is an editorial piece. An editorial, like a news article, is based on fact but also shares opinions. The opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and are not associated with our newsroom.

SALT LAKE CITY — Yesterday I heard there were long lines at the pumps at least one local Costco; it’s supposed to be cheaper there.

Look, I can handle a pandemic and political upheaval. But I get a bad case of PTSD when you say the words “gas lines.”

If you’re older than say, 55 years old, you know what I’m talking about.

In 1973 and again in 1979, Middle East oil producers cut our supply of oil and raised prices overnight. America suffered a meltdown

Gas went up to 77 cents a gallon, which was extremely expensive in 1979. And with disco music blaring on their car radios, Americans freaked out.

The biggest problem was finding gas. Worried the supply would all run out, Americans filled their cars as soon as they burned a quarter tank.

Lines formed and grew until people had to wait hours to fill up. They’d line up for gas at five in the morning. They’d even sleep in their cars to hold their precious place in the queue.

People questioned why the president allowed this to happen.

Many states enacted odd-even rationing. If your license plate was an odd number you could gas up on Monday and Wednesday.

If you had an odd plate on an even day, you could go through the long line but when you got to the front, they’d throw you out.

Despite the effort, some people still couldn’t get gas. Sometimes stations just ran out.

With that kind of tension day after day, it was inevitable that fights would break out on the gas lines.

Right when America was about to snap, President Carter removed price controls on oil. He slapped a windfall profits tax on the oil companies and sanity was restored.

So you can see why Americans who weathered this get more than a little worried when they hear the words “gas lines.”

Other Jeff Caplan Minutes of News:

Listen to Jeff Caplan’s Afternoon News every weekday from 3 to 7 p.m. for more of his “My Minute of News.” And check out the podcast below.

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Send it to the KSL NewsRadio team here.

All News

The U.S. Supreme Court has overturned a 2017 ban on bump stocks, a gun accessory that allows semi-a...

Devin Oldroyd

Supreme Court overturns ban on bump stocks Friday

The U.S. Supreme Court has overturned a 2017 ban on bump stocks, a gun accessory that allows semi-automatic firearms to rapid fire.

15 minutes ago

Image of GOP primary candidates for Utah's 1st Congressional District, Paul Miller (left) and the i...

Curt Gresseth

Utah’s GOP primary: Miller challenging Moore in 1st District

In the Republican primary, Paul Miller is challenging incumbent Rep. Blake Moore for Utah's 1st Congressional District.

53 minutes ago

As the push to the Republican primary election for U.S. Senate heats up, one candidate appears to ...

Daniel Woodruff,

Brad Wilson appears to be pulling back in U.S. Senate race

As the push to the Republican primary election for U.S. Senate heats up, Brad Wilson appears to be slowing down.

1 hour ago

Like their namesakes in the desert west, the ice cowboys of Canada are in the midst of the annual r...

Jeff Caplan

Jeff Caplan’s Minute of News: Hot enough for ya, cowboy?

In the brittle cold Maritime provinces, the perpetual clouds are parting for a month or two, and the ice cowboys are going to work.

2 hours ago

Bryonia, also known as bryony, is a weed that is part of the cucumber family. It looks very similar...

Michelle Lee

How to control the noxious bryonia weed

Do you have bryonia creeping up in your yard? If you do, be very careful because this white poisonous weed can be extremely noxious. Here are some tips on how to identify and control it.

3 hours ago

On July of 2024, The Sundance Institute is bringing back to Utah the Sundance Film Festival films w...

Esme Sanchez Estevez

Free Sundance summer screenings return to Utah

Free Sundance Film summer screenings will be held in Park City, Salt Lake City, and West Valley City. 

12 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

Underwater shot of the fisherman holding the fish...

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

Your Bear Lake fishing guide

Bear Lake offers year-round fishing opportunities. By preparing ahead of time, you might go home with a big catch!

A group of people cut a purple ribbon...


Comcast announces major fiber network expansion in Utah

Comcast's commitment to delivering extensive coverage signifies a monumental leap toward a digitally empowered future for Utahns.

a doctor putting her hand on the chest of her patient...

Intermountain Health

Intermountain nurse-midwives launch new gynecology access clinic

An access clinic launched by Intermountain nurse-midwives provides women with comprehensive gynecology care.

Young couple hugging while a realtor in a suit hands them keys in a new home...

Utah Association of Realtors

Buying a home this spring? Avoid these 5 costly pitfalls

By avoiding these pitfalls when buying a home this spring, you can ensure your investment will be long-lasting and secure.

a person dressed up as a nordic viking in a dragon boat resembling the bear lake monster...

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

The Legend of the Bear Lake Monster

The Bear Lake monster has captivated people in the region for centuries, with tales that range from the believable to the bizarre.


Live Nation Concerts

All the artists coming to Utah First Credit Union Amphitheatre (formerly USANA Amp) this summer

Summer concerts are more than just entertainment; they’re a celebration of life, love, and connection.

Jeff Caplan’s Minute of News: Gas lines remind me of the 70s