~ 5 minutes read
As news pundits yell amongst themselves about who’s to blame, we took a look at what Twitter users are talking about when it comes to gas prices. Below, you’ll find a summary of the 100 most retweeted tweets (representing tweets people relate to the most) mentioning “gas,” “oil,” or “petroleum” in the past 90 days.
Many of the tweets we looked at weren’t partisan, so we broke it down by theme instead.
Keep in mind that the ideas we present here are opinions expressed by individuals, not fact. Many will appear to you as obviously true or false — to keep our bias in check, it’s helpful to ask yourself why.
Tweets about the role of the government were the only ones explicitly divided by political ideology, so we separated them out.
To the right…
“Democrats are telling people struggling with gas prices to buy expensive electric cars.”
“The government sends money to Ukraine, but not to Americans struggling with high gas prices.”
“Biden is shifting oil reliance from one dictator to another, instead of allowing US companies to fix the problem.”
“Democrats are pretending like they didn’t blame Trump for high gas prices while he was president.”
“Inflation is hurting Americans, and Biden needs to help out.”
“Trump warned the world about the dangers of relying on Russian oil, and they laughed at him.”
“Low wages are the real problem — it’s a shame so many Americans can’t afford these higher prices.”
“Price-gouging in other sectors is just as bad (if not worse) than gas price-gouging, and it deserves the same level of attention.”
“We need to increase production of oil and gas, even though it’s bad for the environment.”
The vast majority of these tweets see rising gas prices as a real problem — but that doesn’t mean everyone’s united. Some are narrowing in on the role oil and gas companies play in contributing to high prices, and others are concerned about misplaced political priorities.
This divide is unsurprising. Our brains naturally focus on information that fits well within our worldview — even when we’re presented with evidence that says differently. So people who are naturally skeptical of corporations will focus on ideas that blame oil and gas companies for high gas prices, and others who are naturally skeptical of the current government will focus on ideas that blame Biden or Democratic policies.
It’s important to be aware of our innate biases and how they affect our interpretations and reactions to new information. One way to practice is to examine how others are talking about the issue with the intention to learn from their perspective, asking ourselves: What might I be missing?
Average US Gas Prices Hit Record High — AllSides Headline Roundup
By party, 81% of Republicans say a president can do a lot about gasoline prices. For independents, it’s 53%. For Democrats, it’s 22%. #mulawpoll
— MULawPoll (@MULawPoll) March 31, 2022