In my final Wood & Wood Products column
of 2008, I suggested that the sudden collapse of oil prices came as a
windfall that should benefit consumers and most businesses.

“I can’t help but wonder why more fanfare is not being paid to the
virtues of falling gas pump prices,” I wrote. “I’m stunned to realize
that only two months ago I paid more than $4.30 a gallon and this week
I filled my car for under $1.70 per gallon. If that price differential
held steady over the course of an entire year, I would easily have
another $1,500 in my wallet and my wife would probably save half of
that or more.

“Considering that the gone-but-not-forgotten record high oil prices
were blamed for tacking on costs to all forms of transportation
services and goods, I would think that we should expect some
significant savings to occur in everything from airfares to grocery

Do you share my view that drastically reduced gas prices represent a silver lining of a very stormy economy? Why or why not?

If not gas prices, what do you view as a silver lining that might lead to improved business conditions and a healthier economy?

Have something to say? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below.