Getting at the true cost of a gallon of gas

Yesterday, I said:

By the way, I’d also like to see us fold all of the money we spend on the military protecting our Middle East “interests” – that is, oil supplies – into the gas tax. That’s pure rational accounting, baby. But that’s a different post.

Well, this post still isn’t about what the gas tax should really look like, but today from NPR we have an example of what I’m talking about:

Pirates got the world’s attention a few days ago when they seized a Saudi oil tanker three times the size of an aircaft carrier. But that’s just one of at least 10 ships attacked near the Horn of Africa in the past two weeks.

Vice Adm. Bill Gortney, commander of the U.S. Navy’s 5th Fleet, says even one of the most powerful conglomerations of ships in the world isn’t enough to combat the pirates.

“We can’t be everywhere,” Gortney says.

Gortney’s 5th Fleet has dozens of warships that support the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. He also commands the Combined Maritime Forces, a kind of international navy. But the Somali pirates operate in an area covering more than a million square miles of ocean.

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