Monday, May 28, 2007

Man Can't Give Away Books, So He Burns Them?

Mo. Man Burns Books As Act of Protest

A Missiouri man who owns a used book store has a warehouse full of books that he can't give away to a library or thrift shop. So to protest the "diminishing support for the printed word" he burned many of them, until the fire department showed up.

Maybe someone should just give this guy some business pointers. Since he owns a used book store, he should try selling them there! If he can't sell them there, someone should tell him about Ebay. It sounds to me like he didn't try hard enough. There are plenty of people who would like free books. It sounds to me like burning them was a way of drumming up business for himself.

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Gas Station Owner Closes For 24 Hours

Fed up station owner shuts off gas pumps

An owner of a gas station near Milwaukee, Wisconsin shut down his pumps for a day to protest the high gas prices he has to pay in order to sell gas, saying he basically doesn't make any money on gas sales, which I believe. I understand the gesture, unfortunately anyone who has taken basic economics will be able to tell you that this won't accomplish much economically. If people really want lower gas prices, I have a solution: stop buying gas. Period. Ever. I understand that people need to drive their cars to get to work or to travel, to do anything, or so they perceive. The problem I have is with the other people in the article. One person drove ten miles to buy a soda to encourage the protest. What about the gas they burned to get there? They will still be buying gas when they run out. What about the person who said they drive over a hundred miles a day? Either they're getting reimbursed for their miles (if it's for work) so they're not paying for the gas themselves, or they simply live too far away from work.

I know my solution is a little extreme, but the exaggeration proves a point, and I'll level with you now. It comes down to a dramatic change of lifestyle. Simply put, people rely too much on their cars. They just drive too much. And here's the economic impact: if people drove less, the prices would go down. It is a matter of supply and demand. If demand is lower, so will be the prices. My wife and I moved closer to our work so that we wouldn't be driving as far every day. We now live really close to a lot of shopping places, so now we end up walking more instead of driving. Our neighborhood isn't any worse or better than the one we were in before, but we save money. My wife and I only have one car, but we work close enough to each other to carpool. Think of the next time you feel like driving somewhere close enough to walk to, and walk instead of driving. Or maybe you have two cars and only need one. Instead of going out all the time, stay at home, go for a walk, or do something closer instead of driving around town just to get some coffee. There's enough coffee shops in the world that more than likely there is probably one within walking distance to you.

The basis for this guy's protest is that one day will make a difference, as if it were some sort of magic bullet. It is the same instant gratification that people have that don't want to put in the work to actually change themselves to obtain anything. It is the sense of entitlement that our culture has that calls for everyone else to change for me. Jesus said much about putting stock into possessions and money. Here is one instance which fits perfectly.

10"Whoever can be trusted with very little can also be trusted with much, and whoever is dishonest with very little will also be dishonest with much. 11 So if you have not been trustworthy in handling worldly wealth, who will trust you with true riches? 12 And if you have not been trustworthy with someone else's property, who will give you property of your own? 13 "No servant can serve two masters. Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and Money." ~ Luke 16:10-13
It comes down to this: you drive an SUV a hundred miles a day, you pay more for gas. You can do no more complaining until you change your lifestyle.

Saturday, May 05, 2007

Photoshop Art

Who says you need to have a camera to create art with Photoshop?