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Thanks to the assistance of the Orange Haired Boy, I finally got around to updating my blogging software to Movable Type 3.2 and fixing some bugs that had been, well, bugging me. Now if I can just figure out how MTPaginate works.
Much to the enjoyment of Drew and to the consternation of our cat, our backyard has become the home to a four-legged good luck charm.
Anybody got a good stew recipe?
Drew went riding today for his first time. He rode the wildest, orneriest, buckingest bronco you've ever seen. And big...it was nine feet high if it was an inch. But, Drew broke it.
I looked out my window at work today and saw some interesting contrails, so I grabbed my cell phone and snapped a picture.
You can now send me emails directly to my cell phone by sending them to "cell" at my domain name (the name of this blog/website) dot com. How cool is that?!
OK, so sending emails to cell phones is old-school. But sending them to my domain name and having them automatically go to my cell phone, I think, is pretty cool. I could have done this a long time ago, but it just never occurred to me to set up an email account to forward to my cell phone. The result is a lot easier for the sender than having to remember firstname.lastname@example.org.
The weather today was absolutely amazing. After church, we played ball in our backyard. Then we picnicked on our patio enjoying grilled bratwursts and hot dogs.
I got nuthin' to post. Actually, I have quite a lot but I just haven't had the time to do any posting in the manner that I prefer. So, this is an easy post in honor of Drew's love for Pooh and Tigger--out of nowhere he'll say "Bounce!" following by jumping up and down.
Well here's a neat little item for displaying your city's high and low gas prices provided by Gas Buddy. Even if you don't have a website, checking your city's Gas Buddy site before you fill up makes a lot of sense.
They also have a search tool, although I like the city-personalized icon above better:
From the Gas Buddy webiste:
[City Name]GasPrices.com is a local website which offers an online method for website visitors to post and view recent retail gasoline prices.
Our mission is to serve the public by providing a real time gas prices forum so that consumers can have access to the information necessary to locate the lowest fuel prices available. By working together as a community everyone will save money at the pumps.
I had started my own post in response to moronic politicians who know nothing about economics pandering to an electorate who knows even less about the alleged horrors of price gouging and what they were going to do to stop it. But instead, mostly due to constraints on my own time, I provide the following quotes from others who aren't ruled by brain-dead-knee-jerk-do-goodedness:
John Stossel, In Praise of Price Gouging:
Consider this scenario: You are thirsty -- worried that your baby is going to become dehydrated. You find a store that's open, and the storeowner thinks it's immoral to take advantage of your distress, so he won't charge you a dime more than he charged last week. But you can't buy water from him. It's sold out.
You continue on your quest, and finally find that dreaded monster, the price gouger. He offers a bottle of water that cost $1 last week at an "outrageous" price -- say $20. You pay it to survive the disaster.
You resent the price gouger. But if he hadn't demanded $20, he'd have been out of water. It was the price gouger's "exploitation" that saved your child.
Jeff Jacoby, Bring on the "Price Gougers":
IMAGINE a system that could instantly respond to a calamity like Hurricane Charley by mobilizing suppliers to speed urgently needed resources to the victims. Imagine that such a system could quickly attract the out-of-town manpower needed for cleanup and repairs, while seeing to it that existing supplies were neither recklessly squandered nor hoarded. Imagine that it could prompt thousands of men and women to act in the public interest, yet not force anyone to do anything against his will.
Actually, there's no need to imagine. The system already exists. Economists refer to it as the law of supply and demand. Unfortunately, too many journalists and politicians call it by a more pejorative and destructive name: "price-gouging."
Air fares climb during peak travel periods, hotels charge more during the tourist season -- and yes, Virginia, ice sells at a premium when tens of thousands of Florida homes are without refrigeration and air conditioning in the middle of August. It isn't gouging to charge what the market will bear. It isn't greedy or brazen. It's how goods and services get allocated in a free society -- without the chronic shortages and corruption that are the usual result of price controls and rationing. And never is the flexibility of an unhampered market more essential than in the aftermath of a catastrophe.
Of course, price spikes are infuriating, especially to someone whose life has just been thrown into turmoil by a deadly storm. But they do far more good than harm. Higher prices make it possible for victims to get the help they need to ride out the crisis and for the devastated region to recover as quickly as possible. They do so by sending the message that critical supplies and skills are urgently needed, and by inducing consumers with less-pressing needs to voluntarily defer to those whose needs are more exigent.
At the same time, price increases perform what George Mason University economist Donald Boudreaux calls "economic triage," directing supplies and repairs to those whose need for them is most pressing. Someone who wants a generator so he can power his computer and TV might be willing to rent one for $250. At $400, he is more likely to decide he can live without it -- thereby making it available to the butcher desperate for electricity so he can keep thousands of dollars' worth of meat from spoiling.
When demand increases, prices go up. As prices rise, supplies do, too. And with higher supplies eventually come lower prices. It isn't "gouging," it's the way the world works -- even after hurricanes.
Thomas Sowell, "Price gouging" in Florida:
For centuries, in countries around the world, laws limiting how high prices are allowed to go has led to consumers demanding more than was being supplied, while suppliers supplied less. Thus rent control has consistently led to housing shortages and price controls on food have led to hunger and even starvation.
Wikipedia, Price Gouging:
...laws against price increases serve only to restrict supplies of a good or service by reducing the incentive suppliers have to undertake any additional costs, hazards or inconvenience that may be required.