Friday, September 09, 2005

"Price gouging" to Liberals is Market Driven Economy to Conservatives

Forget about everything you ever heard about "price gouging" because it's just a silly Liberal misconception. The right wingnut idiocracy explains that it's a necessary and normal function of a market driven economy!

Guest blogger desi at Jesus’ General has written a letter to John Stossel about his article at TownHall in praise of price gouging. According to Stossel:
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.
Stossel is not finished...
It saved her because people look out for their own interests. Before you got to the water seller, other people did. At $1 a bottle, they stocked up. At $20 a bottle, they bought more cautiously. By charging $20, the price gouger makes sure his water goes to those who really need it.

The people the softheaded politicians think are cruelest are doing the most to help. Assuming the demand for bottled water was going to go up, they bought a lot of it, planning to resell it at a steep profit. If they hadn't done that, that water would not have been available for the people who need it the most

I encourage people to read desi's complete post at Jesus' General, An Open Letter to John Stossel, for her entire rebuttal (or at her own blog Greatscat!).
I have a few questions for you, but first, I too have a scenario for your consideration: You are a shop owner in a small coastal town. It's Summertime, and you know there are bound to be storms, possibly flooding. You stock up on water and necessities.
A young woman carrying a small baby makes her way to your store. They are wet, tired and thirsty, possibly dehydrated. She picks up 2 bottles of water and sets the on the counter. You explain that the total is $40.00 -- plus bottle deposit, I assume?

The young woman is silent as she looks at the crumbled dollar-bills in her hand.
The young woman with the baby has endured hardships you cannot fathom to get to your store after the storm and flood. She is desperate to give her baby some fluids. She had taken shelter in a home that still had some fairly dry ground with a group of others. One of them gave her a small caliber handgun for her travels, to keep herself and the baby safe. Firing once, she strikes you dead as she exclaims "Take that, you bastard!"
As she leaves with her baby -- precious water, and the cash that she might need for someone selling food at an exorbitant price for her own good -- she mutters: "This is the last time I vacation in America!"

Now my quesitons. Just out of curiosity, are you a Libertarian, and did you complete Economics 101? On second thought, however, your answers don't really matter. You're dead. Heh heh. Good luck with that journamalisming thing.

Let there be no doubt about what Stossel is advocating here. "By charging $20, the price gouger makes sure his water goes to those who really need it." "The people who need it the most" are those that can afford it! Reserving it for the rich is EXACTLY what he means!


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