Price fixing is illegal

According to Canada’s Competition Bureau, price fixing is illegal.

According to Canada’s Competition Bureau, “provisions 45, 46 and 48 of the Competition Act prohibit agreements between two or more persons to prevent or unduly lessen competition or to unreasonably enhance the price of a product.”

In plain English then, it’s not okay for gas stations to increase or decrease their prices in an agreed upon manner. If it happens “accidently” or “circumstantially,” it’s okay.

The problem, says the Competition Bureau, is that “price-fixing conspiracies are by their nature difficult to detect and prove.”

This strikes me as ridiculously funny. Somehow, the simple has become insanely convoluted.

In my mind, the proof is blatantly obvious to anyone with a fairly decent pair of working eyes. Or even anyone with friends who have eyes.

When one gas pump raises or drops their price (sometimes by as much as 25 per cent increases, though decreases are by the penny), all other gas pumps in the greater Victoria region (or provincial region) follow suit.

In my simple, un-complicated non-government brain, prices would go up when a gas station’s old fuel supply is gone and has been replaced by a cheaper (or more expensive) deposit of fuel. The point of price change, then, is when the tanks are refilled.

Unless the supply at all gas stations are emptied and refilled at the exact same moment, then we already have all the proof we need that some form of collusion is happening. They’re advertising it for goodness sakes!

The hand-slapping for price collusion is potentially painful. It can include fines up to $10 million, imprisonment for up to five years, or both. Courts can also impose orders to prevent this from happening.

Yet, in spite of the evidence blatantly posted right there before our eyes, nothing happens.

Are we still waiting for some innocent child to yell out that the Emperor is naked? Sadly, in today’s world, that child will need to be one rich enough to be able to afford a team of lawyers, and young enough to live through the decades that it might require.

And then, we’ll need a sibling child to point out that the very same is going on with the highly monopolized communications industry (cell phones, cable, internet). Only difference is, they are not posting their signs on drive-by billboards.

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Sandy Carmichael is a Goldstream Gazette 2021 Local Hero as Seniors’ Champion. (Don Denton/Black Press Media)
Worker bee returns to volunteer: Sandy Carmichael a fixture at Langford Royal Canadian Legion

Sandy Carmichael is the 2021 recipient of the Seniors’ Champion Award

West Shore Parks and Recreation facilities face a challenging future in terms of funding, due to reduced operations throughout the pandemic. (Black Press Media file photo)
West Shore Parks and Recreation faces challenging future

West Shore Parks and Recreation Society submits 2021 budget request to owner municipalities

The It’s Critical campaign has raised $5.89 million towards its $7 million goal to expand critical care capacity at Victoria’s Royal Jubilee Hospital. (Black Press Media file photo)
Critical care improvements make the list with Greater Victoria shoppers

Save-On-Foods pledges $300,000 to Victoria Hospitals Foundation’s It’s Critical campaign

Approximately 100 people gathered in Centennial Square Saturday afternoon to listen to speakers decry COVID-19 restrictions. (Jane Skrypnek/News Staff)
PHOTOS: Victoria residents protest masks, COVID-19 restrictions

Approximately 100 people gathered in Centennial Square Saturday afternoon

Saskatoon resident liajah Pidskalny poses with his bike near the University of Victoria after putting on thousands of kilometres to raise awareness of the overdose and mental health crisis. (Courtesy Iliajah Pidskalny)
Saskatoon cyclist winds up mental health and overdose awareness ride in Victoria

Iliajah Pidskalny braves prairie winter conditions to get word out to communities

Abbotsford’s Kris Collins turned to TikTok out of boredom when the provincial COVID-19 lockdown began in March 2020. She now has over 23 million followers on the video app. Photo: Submitted
Internet famous: Abbotsford’s Kris Collins is a TikTok comedy queen

Collins has found surprise stardom alone with a phone

A Vancouver restaurant owner was found guilty of violating B.C.’s Human Rights Code by discriminating against customers on the basis of their race. (Pixabay)
Vancouver restaurant owner ordered to pay $4,000 to customers after racist remark

Referring to patrons as ‘you Arabs’ constitutes discrimination under B.C.’s Human Rights Code, ruling deems

Nanaimo children’s author and illustrator Lindsay Ford’s latest book is ‘Science Girl.’ (Photo courtesy Lindsay Ford)
B.C. children’s writer encourages girls to pursue the sciences in new book

Lindsay Ford is holding a virtual launch for latest book, ‘Science Girl’

Pig races at the 145th annual Chilliwack Fair on Aug. 12, 2017. Monday, March 1, 2021 is Pig Day. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress file)
Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of Feb. 28 to March 6

Pig Day, Canadian Bacon Day and Grammar Day are all coming up this week

Staff from the Marine Mammal Rescue Centre, passersby, RCMP and Nanaimo Fire Rescue carried a sick 300-kilogram steller sea lion up the steep bluff at Invermere Beach in north Nanaimo in an attempt to save the animal’s life Thursday. (Photo courtesy Marine Mammal Rescue Centre)
300-kilogram sea lion muscled up from B.C. beach in rescue attempt

Animal dies despite efforts of Nanaimo marine mammal rescue team, emergency personnel and bystanders

Doctors and counsellors warn of an increase in panic attacks, anxiety, depression and suicide ideas between ages 10 to 14, in Campbell River. ( Black Press file photo)
Extended pandemic feeding the anxieties of B.C.’s youth

Parents not sure what to do, urged to reach out for help

Gina Adams as she works on her latest piece titled ‘Undying Love’. (Submitted photo)
‘Toothless’ the kitty inspires B.C. wood carver to break out the chainsaw

Inspired by plight of a toothless cat, Gina Adams offers proceeds from her artwork to help animals

B.C. Finance Minister Selina Robinson presents bill to delay B.C.’s budget as late as April 30, and allow further spending before that, B.C. legislature, Dec. 8, 2020. (Hansard TV)
How big is B.C.’s COVID-19 deficit? We’ll find out April 20

More borrowing expected as pandemic enters second year

The first of 11 Dash 8 Q400 aircraft's have arrived in Abbotsford. Conair Group Inc. will soon transform them into firefighting airtankers. (Submitted)
Abbotsford’s Conair begins airtanker transformation

Aerial firefighting company creating Q400AT airtanker in advance of local forest fire season

Most Read