Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Rolling With the Punches

This weekend, Hal and I had initially made plans to hike Monadnock. After a bit of calculating (feeding the Kia Pet would have cost around $40 or so dollars), we decided to stay closer to home. Instead, spent a pleasant Saturday wandering around the Mystic. Sunday, had fun at Pablo's big barbecue bash. Yesterday, Pablo, his sister Anna (who was visiting from Salem), Hal and I visited the rather unimpressive brain exhibit at the Museum of Science.

All in all, very nice. We kept our fuel consumption down, thus saving it for someone else who might really 'need' it (or rather, want it more) and still managed to have fun. Imagine that.

This morning, Pablo sent me some thought-provoking commentary on 'profiteering' or 'price gouging' and its utility in a market-driven system. I found this quote particularly interesting:

...“Profiteering” strikes most of us as unsavory. But it depends on the context. After all, were we serious about criminalizing price gouging, we would throw every member of the National Association of Realtors behind bars. Although the markup on housing is far more dramatic than the markup on gasoline, we don’t seem to mind. Why? Because most of us getting gouged on Sunday afternoon at the open houses hope one day to do likewise. Apparently, Americans approve of gouging as long as they’re the ones doing the deed.

Especially after reading this article on a predicted slowdown of the housing price boom and who would get hurt from it (those at the bottom of the pyramid, of course).

I guess that it's all just a case of comedy being when you step on a banana peel and fall and tragedy being when I step on the banana peel and fall.

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