April 26, 2006

Greed is bad, right?

If pursuing profit is greed, economist Walter Williams told me, then greed is good, because it drives us to do many good things. "Those areas where people are motivated the most by greed are the areas that we're the most satisfied with: supermarkets, computers, FedEx." By contrast, areas "where people say we're motivated by 'caring'" -- public education, public housing etc. -- "are the areas of disaster in our country. . . . How much would get done," Williams wondered, "if it all depended on human love and kindness?"

That's from John Stossel's latest article - Greed--Not Kindness--Gets Things Done. It's interesting, go read it. :)

Speaking of greed, here is the latest cartoon from Cox & Forkum, about price-gouging:

It seems it's OK for soccer moms and other 'workers' to demand to be paid what their products and services are worth, but the same does not go for petrol company owners. Read the editorial that goes with it, it nicely addresses the myth of price-gouging:

And while we're on fuel prices, I thought I'd point you to an investigation done by Popular Mechanics about alternative fuels, and how practical/affordable they are:

In the lab, many gasoline alternatives look good. Out on the road, automotive engineers have a lot of work to do, and energy companies have new infrastructure to build, before very many people can drive off into a petroleum-free future. And, there's the issue of money. Too often, discussions of alternative energy take place in an alternative universe where prices do not matter.

For this special report, PM crunched the numbers on the actual costs and performance of each major alternative fuel. Before we can debate national energy policy--or even decide which petroleum substitutes might make sense for our personal vehicles--we need to know how these things stack up in the real world.

Read here for the rest:

Real Clear Politics - John Stossel - Greed--Not Kindness--Gets Things Done:

Cox & Forkum Gas Fumes

Popular Mechanics - How far can you drive on a bushel of corn? Crunching the numbers on alternative fuels:


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