A high price for patriotism, paid by those who can least afford it

Gas prices.
(Image credit: Illustrated | Getty Images, iStock)

There's a scene in Jack Kerouac's counterculture classic On the Road where the impecunious characters are so broke they have to coast their car down a mountain to reach the next town. Finding an open pawnshop, they exchange a new watch for one dollar — enough to replenish the tank and get back on track.

Kerouac probably wouldn't be very happy if he pulled up to the pump today. According to the American Automobile Association, average gas prices hit an all-time high of $4.17 this week.

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Samuel Goldman

Samuel Goldman is a national correspondent at TheWeek.com. He is also an associate professor of political science at George Washington University, where he is executive director of the John L. Loeb, Jr. Institute for Religious Freedom and director of the Politics & Values Program. He received his Ph.D. from Harvard and was a postdoctoral fellow in Religion, Ethics, & Politics at Princeton University. His books include God's Country: Christian Zionism in America (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2018) and After Nationalism (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2021). In addition to academic research, Goldman's writing has appeared in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and many other publications.