"Being tolerant does not mean that I share another one's belief. But it does mean that I acknowledge another one's right to believe,
and obey, his own conscience." ~ Viktor Frankl
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$2,500 helicopter drip pans cost $17,000 each when the Defense Department buys them.
Even $2500 for a drip pan is nuts. I bought a steel drip pan at a local auto parts shop for under $10. And it's not even really needed. Who cares if there are a few drips of oil on the concrete.
I'm glad the story got out. Might rattle the cages of a few believers in the government religion...
The article is by our old friend and champion Lew Rockwell word-slinger, Gary North. Gary provides a cardinal economic explanation of why a ten buck item can end up at 17,000 frn's (phony bucks) in the absence of a free marketplace and with privilege granted by vultures of state.
That's the nature of all monopoly government. Only an unencumbered marketplace can determine the value of a drip pan. That's simple but sound economics.
Purchases by agents of state have no correlation to sound economics. Bids are for show only.
As Dr North sums it: "...Drip, drip, drip: the solvency of the United States government drips away...."
But your use of the term "..government religion.." best describes the quandary:
A number of years ago -- I think it was when I was still in recovery from acute and chronic conservatism -- a great but short-lived rumble occurred in public media over the discovery of an eight buck hammer billed to a government contract for 105.00 or some such inflated figure. How many "cages were rattled"? Some, I'm sure (mine for one), but seemingly (according to us over-avid libertarians) not nearly enough.
I try to preach going easy on religionists and Pauliens and Tea Partiers so as not to scare them off before their miracle (they log into STR) takes place. Because "logic" won't phase most of those folks -- it takes a miracle. You had an excellent piece on this a couple months ago.
There are lots and lots of "...believers in the government religion..." out there. I strongly suggest anybody who hasn't read (or those who have, reread) Delmar England's "Insanity as the Social Norm" essay. I agree with England that many come to libertarianism with lots of governmentalist detritus and fallacies that need to be shed before graduating to anarchy.
But back to religion that is government, take a look at this weekend's political holiday sustained by warmongers of state. How many war reenactments to bolster the serfs' warring mentality will be played out over the land in the next few days? In particular you will see it performed in the picturesque villages that are built around huge churches of this denomination or that. The entire population (or so it will seem) will turn out to watch a platoon of old duffers who've donned moth-eaten wartime costumes so they can march to cemeteries in bittersweet memorial to victims ("our-fallen-heroes") of the violence of politicians. My arms and shoulders still ache from the memory of carrying those old vicious M-1 rifles (they said it was 9.5 pounds stripped, but I'll bet it was 30 or so pounds after a 20 mile march to bivouac with a full 8 round clip. They gain, ya know). After a long and arduous prayer by the local padre, the "troops", in formation, will shoot a bunch of blanks, some kid with a trumpet hiding behind a tree will try to emulate bugle "taps", and they'll all march back home again.
None will know why they fought wars in the first place.
Unless we tell them.
(Ended up with a double-post while agonizing with "edit" and "embeds" -- sorry)
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