Regarding the paychecks of drillers, I worked on an oil rig in the gulf for a few years. We worked 12 hour shifts, 7 days a week, in whatever weather. When your shift ended, you ran thru the shower, swallowed some food and jumped in the bed that was just vacated by the guy who took your place on the rig. We worked 14 days on, 14 days off. You were trapped on that rig until the crew boat came to take you to the shore. If you relief didn't show up, guess what? You were trapped for another 14 days. This was exhausting, dangerous work. We weren't supervising a robot painting a car or drop engines in a chassis in an air conditioned factory. We didn't eat from the company cafeteria or take breaks or have days off. If you were sick, you worked sick. We didn't go home at the end of the day, we spent the night with a crew of sweaty, stinking men. We can fuss about the price of gas and oil all we want to, and I'm certainly not trying to justify it. But the people on the oil rigs earn their money.
On another note, the price of gas is set by the world market. If a particular area is not in line with the rest of the country, it is a problem associated with that area.