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Author Topic: Reasons why boycotts do not work Back to Topics

Champion Author

Joined:Feb 2011
Message Posted: Mar 11, 2011 11:30:06 PM

There are many calls to boycott this or that. Whether you are calling for a boycott or not I thought this topic would provide place a list of reasons why they do not.

As a counter to this topic, perhaps someone can begin another topic to collect reasons why a boycott would work.
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Champion Author Chicago

Joined:Feb 2011
Message Posted: Apr 1, 2013 11:08:09 PM

Sure T3605. I have requested that this old topic be closed.
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All-Star Author Oakland

Joined:Apr 2011
Message Posted: May 5, 2011 4:11:16 PM

As soon as I saw this topic, I clicked "Add to favorite topics." =P

I've gotten a lot of Facebook event invites over the past couple of months to boycott gas--from boycotting gas on a certain day to a certain company--and it's apparent that people don't know how economics works. *sighs* A lot of people have already explained what I wanted to explain, so I guess my comment to those Facebook event users is that even if they send the invitation to all 2000 of your "friends," only 10 of them may actually do it, and those 10 people alone aren't going to make a significant difference even if the boycott actually did work based on their "reasoning."

[Edited by: HuoXingC at 5/5/2011 4:12:37 PM EST]
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Rookie Author San Bernardino

Joined:Apr 2011
Message Posted: Apr 27, 2011 2:08:52 PM

no matter how many people boycott people always show up to pump gas
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Champion Author Alabama

Joined:Mar 2011
Message Posted: Apr 22, 2011 4:49:17 PM

At the retail level the cost of operation would remain the same, just selling less gallons. Therefore, retailers would have to raise their profit margin/gallon to remain in business. This is a Catch-22 problem.
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Rookie Author Orlando

Joined:Jun 2010
Message Posted: Apr 21, 2011 7:34:32 AM

how about if every body car pools or takes public transit where its available
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Champion Author Wilmington

Joined:Sep 2005
Message Posted: Apr 21, 2011 6:25:17 AM

GB- fifteen cents is about the combined profit of refineries and stations, not fifteen cents each. Thanks for pointing out the language, which may have been confusing to some.
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Rookie Author Gary

Joined:Apr 2011
Message Posted: Apr 20, 2011 8:05:43 PM

I'd love to think a boycott would work...sigh...but i think prices would still continue to rise in effort to punish the boycotters.

I agree with the poster that said that we must learn to reduce the amount of gas that we use on a daily basis not just not buy it for a few days.

I cannot afford to buy a hybrid car at all. I hate that media suggests that i just go pick one of those new hybrids up to solve high gas prices...hey, maybe i should get two...
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Rookie Author Denver

Joined:Apr 2011
Message Posted: Apr 20, 2011 2:01:39 PM

Not buying gas guzzlers and suv's is a fine idea, but there are so many of us who cannot afford those fancy hybrid cars and suv's, or even the newer more economical cars with better gas mileage. All we can afford in this economy is the crap no one wants, which is the gas guzzlers - because they're cheap to buy. So yeah, good idea, but impossible for a good many of us. I'd like to see some solutions that can work for everyone in this economy, not just the more well off people.
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All-Star Author Ontario

Joined:Jun 2009
Message Posted: Apr 20, 2011 11:36:03 AM

So true, when you boycott you just hurt hard working individuals in your community. Talk about Job losses, the franchisee is just trying to make an honest living like me and you, except they have to take all the crap from us.

They make 3 to 4 cents per gallon? can you operate on that? minus all of the previous posts? Puts things in a different perspective doesn't it?
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Champion Author Maryland

Joined:Aug 2004
Message Posted: Apr 1, 2011 2:08:55 PM

catfish99 wrote:
"Because the people you are boycotting - station owners and refiners - only profit about fifteen cents a gallon after costs."

Together they might profit that much, but individually station owners and refiners profit less. For perspective, most gas station mark-up up gas about 10 cents a gallon (some as low as 3 or 4 cents, some as much as 15 or 20 cents) before taking out operating expenses, and those operating expenses include a percentage of the price at the pump for credit card purchases (generally 2.5 percent per gallon, meaning upwards of 8 or 10 cents per gallon), salaries, rent, accountant fees, paying off their initial investment/purchase of the station and/or property, franchise fees (if appropriate), etc.
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Champion Author Wilmington

Joined:Sep 2005
Message Posted: Apr 1, 2011 6:45:29 AM

Because the people you are boycotting - station owners and refiners - only profit about fifteen cents a gallon after costs.
They could work for free and people would still be calling for a boycott.
If the entity you are boycotting cannot make the changes you demand, then there is no reason to boycott.
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Champion Author Chicago

Joined:Feb 2011
Message Posted: Apr 1, 2011 1:33:49 AM

Michael29644: You make some very good points. A short boycott would not even show up on the radar of the oil companies, and a long term boycott would be way to disruptive to those boycotting.

BRA0712 has some great observations. There are some real reasons that people will not participate in a gas boycott despite being aggravated with high prices. At the end of the day people still need to drive to work, school, drive to shop, travel.

Finally, Allan2010 illustrates what will send a message. I have stated in a number of these topics that boycotts do not work, but changing how and what people drive can result in lower sales that do not come back. There still is a place for SUV's and trucks but buying a car that gets better MPG will allow more money to stay in your pocket and put a long term dent in gasoline sales.
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Champion Author Alberta

Joined:Mar 2010
Message Posted: Mar 31, 2011 11:47:04 PM

I agree with Michael, untill we stop buying the big SUV's and gas guzzler's, the demand will be there. As long as the demand remains..the prices will reflect that demand. I know my wifes next car is going to be a SMART car maybe even a diesel engine that gets over 60mpg
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Rookie Author New Jersey

Joined:Mar 2011
Message Posted: Mar 12, 2011 4:28:41 PM

that is so true. it is worth trying
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Champion Author Arizona

Joined:Nov 2008
Message Posted: Mar 12, 2011 2:36:07 PM

if you boycott gas then you have to walk or ride to work. If you dont have a bike you have to find a way to go buy one. No matter what you will use gas. The Oregon rain also will convince you not to ride a bike unless you are another stupid Portland hippie. So as much as I would love to tell the gas companies to suck it, I will continue to drive.
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Champion Author Greenville

Joined:Jan 2011
Message Posted: Mar 12, 2011 2:45:03 AM

Boycotts of gasoline for a day or two (etc.) do not work because people generally do not cut back on the amount they use. The key is to reduce the amount we purchase. Otherwise, you're simply shifting the purchase from one day to another. The oil companies will still get their money. Now, if someone actually boycotts gasoline purchases for a month or two, then maybe I'll be impressed.
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