Storm Sandy: New York inquiry into overpricing

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posted on Nov, 5 2012 @ 11:04 AM
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Storm Sandy: New York inquiry into overpricing


www.bbc.co.uk

New York's Attorney General has launched an investigation into hundreds of complaints of prices being increased in the aftermath of storm Sandy.

Mr Schneiderman said that consumers had contacted him to report "possible gouging for emergency supplies like generators, hotels raising rates due to 'high demand', as well as increased prices for food and water".
(visit the link for the full news article)




posted on Nov, 5 2012 @ 11:04 AM
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It’s been a while since I have posted anything new on ATS but I saw this and I felt compelled. This kind of overcharging when people are in need is awful, especially if it is true of real necessities such as water.

This is capitalism gone crazy, supply and demand gone too far, yes everybody needs to make a living but to charge people devastated by such a disaster for water, food and shelter is not right in my opinion. People should be helping each other out, not charging for water, I think this is really very sad.

Anyway, I thought some on ATS may be interested to hear about this, also if anyone caught up in the disaster has experienced this so called “Price gouging” please do share your stories.


www.bbc.co.uk
(visit the link for the full news article)



posted on Nov, 5 2012 @ 11:14 AM
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reply to post by OtherSideOfTheCoin
 


Barely legal looting...it's a shame the best in humans, is tainted with the worst in humans, in emergency situations.

I hope those price gouging, face stiff penalties...but I highly doubt it....


Des









edit on 5-11-2012 by Destinyone because: (no reason given)



posted on Nov, 5 2012 @ 11:16 AM
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Let's not forget the gas stations. In Nassau County there was a gas station that raised regular unleaded to $9.00 a gallon!!!

The greed of man always outweighs the compassion....



posted on Nov, 5 2012 @ 11:32 AM
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Price gouging may be a crappy thing to do, but is it illegal? I believe the rule is you can charge whatever you like and people are free to buy or not buy. You can sell all of your gasoline at $3/gal and probably none at $30/gal. Its up to you to calculate a price that the market will bear. I don't think you're obligated to consider weather or disaster conditions.



posted on Nov, 5 2012 @ 11:37 AM
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Originally posted by Urantia1111
Price gouging may be a crappy thing to do, but is it illegal? I believe the rule is you can charge whatever you like and people are free to buy or not buy. You can sell all of your gasoline at $3/gal and probably none at $30/gal. Its up to you to calculate a price that the market will bear. I don't think you're obligated to consider weather or disaster conditions.


34 States currently have laws against price gouging. NY is one of them.

N.Y GBS KAW 396-r: Price Gouging



posted on Nov, 5 2012 @ 11:40 AM
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Originally posted by Urantia1111
Price gouging may be a crappy thing to do, but is it illegal? I believe the rule is you can charge whatever you like and people are free to buy or not buy. You can sell all of your gasoline at $3/gal and probably none at $30/gal. Its up to you to calculate a price that the market will bear. I don't think you're obligated to consider weather or disaster conditions.


There are price gouging laws that exist:

www.businessweek.com...


The law says that during an emergency, goods and services shouldn't cost more than what's ordinarily charged for comparable items "in the same market area at or immediately before the declaration of a state of emergency or local emergency."


It might take a while for people doing this to be brought to justice....but there are laws against doing it.



posted on Nov, 5 2012 @ 11:41 AM
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reply to post by Urantia1111
 





Price gouging may be a crappy thing to do, but is it illegal? I believe the rule is you can charge whatever you like and people are free to buy or not buy. You can sell all of your gasoline at $3/gal and probably none at $30/gal. Its up to you to calculate a price that the market will bear. I don't think you're obligated to consider weather or disaster conditions.


Very true and a very good point, this may or may not be legal, I honestly do not know.

But my moral compass tells me that it is morally wrong, I don’t think that legality matters, I think doing what’s right is what matters, is it morally justifiable to charge $10 dollars (a hypothetical price) for a bag of rice for a starving homeless family who have just lost everything, just so you can increase your profit margins.

This is why I have a problem with capitalism; sure its grate when everyone is making money and everything is going well. But as soon as disaster strikes, be it a economic collapse or a super-storm the rich always crawl away better off than ever before when the poor are forced into deeper poverty.

Morally this is wrong, the rich should be taking a loss on food a fuel prices until people have a chance to recover, not cashing in.



posted on Nov, 5 2012 @ 12:28 PM
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reply to post by Urantia1111
 


Does that mean you agree with Adam Smiths "invisible hand" theory of capitalism.
You know, the one thats sucker punching you?

Yes, it's illegal in an emergency to jack up prices of necessities (not to mention immoral) and I hope everyone doing is fined far beyond the extra money they profit they made.



posted on Nov, 5 2012 @ 12:32 PM
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reply to post by Urantia1111
 


The presumption of 'what the market will bear' is that the market is 'normal.'

In a market that is neither free, nor transparent, there is such a thing as 'price gouging' or perhaps more aptly put "predatory profiteering."

But truthfully, in a world where money is "speech" it is highly unlikely that this will be more than a distraction....

After all, what are the consumers to do? Not buy gas? How does that work?



posted on Nov, 5 2012 @ 12:36 PM
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reply to post by Asktheanimals
 



When 9/11 happened I was living in Missouri at the time.. from like a buck and change for gas a gallon they jacked it up to 7+ dollars a gallon at some stations. You know, folks thinking the terrorists would take all the gas or some nonsense.
The state said if you have a receipt, send it.. and they forced the stations to refund the gouged amount.
Its illegal in many places, not to mention immoral.

Now in Illinois, there is no disaster but last month they state warned the stations about price gouging and htey were being monitored. If a person can take a buck from you illegally they will, Its just more easy in a disaster situation.



posted on Nov, 5 2012 @ 12:38 PM
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Originally posted by DerekJR321
34 States currently have laws against price gouging. NY is one of them.

N.Y GBS KAW 396-r: Price Gouging
Yes and that law is as clear as mud:


Whether a price is unconscionably excessive is a question of law for the court.
So, you don't know if you've broken the law or not until the court decides.

It doesn't really say you can't raise prices at all, it says the price can't be "unconscionably excessive".

Is a 50% increase "unconscionably excessive"? I wouldn't think so.
Is a 500% increase "unconscionably excessive"? I would think so.

But am I right? Where would the court draw the line? Why don't they specify "unconscionably excessive" instead of making it completely unspecified and from my perspective, arbitrary depending on which court decides the definition?

Also, remember if the gas station can't get re-supplied, it may be to your advantage if they raise the prices from $4.00 to $10.00 a gallon. Why? Yes you will pay more, so that's not to your advantage. But if they keep the price at normal levels and can't get resupplied, and they've run out when you get there, you can't buy any at any price. To me that's worse than paying $10 a gallon. The $10/gallon price may encourage people to only get limited amounts (enough to last until the station can be re-supplied) thereby increasing the chances of some being left when you get there.



posted on Nov, 5 2012 @ 12:47 PM
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I haven't had the misfortune of being on a line for gas but I can say that, with everything else, I've seen the opposite of price gouging.

Restaurants giving food away or selling it at steep discounts because it was going to spoil.

Stores offering discounts for anyone who can show they had a loss (insurance claims, FEMA paperwork etc.

I've heard all kinds of stories about neighbors helping neighbors and several friends have sent out mass emails asking for blankets, food, warm clothes etc to bring to some of the harder hit areas.

NYC has a reputation for being cold, hard hearted, rude etc but, in these kinds of situations, there's a very different attitude here while, in the suburbs, I've heard war stories of neighbors fighting each other, short tempers, etc.



posted on Nov, 11 2012 @ 08:24 PM
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reply to post by OtherSideOfTheCoin
 


wow when it happens in north carolina after every major storm event no body in goverment even care to comment but when it happens in new york they feel need to investigate. i have lived approximtely 35 of my 42 years on earth in north carolina and this is a constant thing after a hurricane and even right before hurricane or blizzard.



posted on Nov, 11 2012 @ 09:16 PM
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Food and water seemed to be priced the same.
As for the gas sheesh! Lines 4-5 blocks away 2 and a half hour wait, and it hasn't got any better.
They had to make it so that you could only get gas if the last number of your license plate was an even number or odd number for the following day.
I don't know what the holdup is these areas have had their power back for a while.
There are cops at all the gas stations checking license plates.





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