The Good Fight

I frequent the John Stossel message boards at ABCNews. I often find little morsels of economics misunderstanding like this.

LUCKY are those people who have full time employment whose employer pays all or part of their health insurance. Those people are becoming far fewer now that many companies are discontinuing health insurance benefits because they are more interested in larger profits than helping their employees stay healthy, so these same employees can continue to generate large profits for their company.


Look at the bottom of your toaster or the back of your television set and you will probably see that it is UL listed. Underwriter’s Laboratories has had the same mission for more than a century. Look in your garage and you are likely to find a shovel whose blade has a curve in it. That curve was first added by an innovative young company before Thomas Jefferson penned the Declaration of Independence.

More than 200 years later the Ames company still makes shovels. UL certification spans continents. The Catholic church has changed culturally over the millennia of its existence, but its core message remains pretty much the same. The Red Cross still saves lives. In this day of disposable everything, we sometimes forget that many private organizations have outlasted governments and can influence more than just one country.


Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.

More than 200 years ago, the United States created a free religious market. Religion is a market which was kept relatively free for quite some time. It flourished when similar markets in other countries did not. In fact, the freedom of religion is now often considered a basic human right in many countries.


Last year, Katrina revealed several problems with central planning and emergency management. Centrally planned emergency management aims tries to guarantee that all available resources are diverted to the emergency site. The problem is the same as with any government funded solution. Money. Depending on who is in power and a few thousand other variables, funding may or may not be substantial enough to handle emergencies.

A few years ago, a town in New York decided to cut the budget and not purchase snow insurance. Central planners felt there was little risk in that area for heavy snow fall. After a few years of savings, there was a very heavy snow season and little funds to clear roads. Central planners found out the hard way why snow insurance rates in there area were not lower.


Conservatives who favor the free market tend to be libertarian on economic issues. Liberals who favor civil liberties tend to be libertarian on social issues.

In the movie Dave, the Presidential impostor is at an automobile factory and is controlling robotic arms. He spreads them really wide and says something about a really big fish. If he were referring to the Internal Revenue Code he might have needed much longer arms. Here’s a list of the 17 books (available at the GPO) needed to get a current set of your own.

Let’s look at some statistics.

  • Total volumes: 17 (16 and 17 below are the same).
  • Pages: 12,154 (excluding the 2 pages from title 16 below).
  • Total cost: $846 (not including shipping).


Another hopeful sign for gay marriage. Of course, the bigots still don’t want to allow it, but gay marriage is gaining ground. Freedom has a way of doing that. Give us an inch of freedom and we will take a mile.

I have really got to get into not farming. No, not farming, not farming. The USDA wants to pay people for not farming to the tune of more than $200 million per year. At least that’s what Cafe Hayek quotes of a Harper’s Index article.

It sure would be great to get a part of that cash. Well, that is, it would be nice to get the cash and not actually have to live in the country which supported such subsidies. Taking money from hard working people and giving it to other people to not work just doesn’t seem like a good foundation for a country.

To libertarians you are all the same. Each party seeks to limit the freedoms of others to fit their definition of a good and equitable society. You only differ on what behaviors you wish to control. Democrats wish to control how I allocate my property and Republicans want to control how I use my property. Both of you are willing to use coercion, which is often unethical, to force me to your point of view.

As a libertarian, I believe those finding my argument wanting shouldn’t have to live with its consequences.

The first real estate investment I made was a rehab here in Stephenville. I made a lot of mistakes, but I also did some things few experienced investor can fathom. I didn’t put down any earnest money to get the contract signed. I started repairs before we closed. I negotiated a price well below asking. Asking price was $20,000 and I got it for $12,000. It was my lack of knowledge of what was expected which allowed me to proceed without knowing I was getting anything special.


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