V-50 Session 10

Good evening ladies and gentlemen.  Good evening and welcome once again to the continuation of the V-50 Lectures.  Lecture #10 is a continuation of a discussion of the fourth step of the ideological program.  And, again, this fourth step involves the maintenance of products in general and, in particular, one of the principal products that I will be explaining is the technology of maintaining that product, freedom.  And again, what is freedom?  As I said in session 1, it’s the condition that exists when everyone has liberty and there’s not one slave.  That means everyone has 100% control over the derivatives of his own life called property.

However, once having built freedom, how do we maintain freedom?  If we cannot maintain a societal condition in which everyone has full 100% control over his own property, then we will suffer a social relapse.  And that relapse is called, of course, tyranny.  Tyranny is simply large scale crime without recourse to the victims.  So building freedom has got something to do with obtaining recourse to the victims of all crimes.  In order to maintain freedom, it must be possible to construct then a means of protecting property without the employment of any coercion.  As I’ve stated, the solution to every problem must be a moral solution or it is not a solution.  As I have explained, the historical approach to solving problems of society, as you know, has always been the political approach which has produced the political program.

The ideological program, in contrast, a totally unique concept of solving problems, will be the replacement of all political programs.  Because every political program is ultimately backed up with a gun, the result is a gun-run society.  In a political republic, of course, as I’ve explained, the means of solving problems is coercive.  In a right republic, or in space land, the means of solving problems will be contractual.  And so, this theory will obsolete a murder weapon called the gun.  In other words, the gun will be replaced with something.  The gun will be replaced with a contract.

I pointed out that in a right republic we are building upon this principle: there is no such thing as a small interference with property.  In a right republic, I discussed during our last session, what happens when, for example, what is believed to be a law of nature, fails.  What happens when, what is believed to be right, turns out to be wrong?  When a law of nature cannot contain, or rather does not obtain continual corroboration in the fourth step of the scientific method, then it is scrapped.  In contrast, what happens in a political republic when a political law fails?  The means to rectify the error is to what?  Pass even more political legislation which means even more coercion.  A right republic, since coercion is never the means, and we rectify all of the errors with the scientific method of rectification.  And so, in order for government to flourish, there must be a technology that can solve every problem on a moral basis.  When government does not flourish, that simply means the state will flourish and the state is synonymous with tyranny.

In Session 9, you may recall, I demonstrated that the United States Post Office does not provide any useful function.  Therefore – I presume you did get this message – although as I may point out and have pointed out, you don’t need V-50 to know that the Post Office is incompetent.  All you need to do is, what?  Use the system.  As I also pointed out, even a postal official would admit that they’re incompetent.  I think I mentioned one of the fairly high echelon members of the Post Office made a statement in the press one day that for every package that United Parcel Service destroys, we destroy ten.  Which is an open admission of what?  We don’t know what we’re doing.  We’re incompetent.  There’s no comparison.

Alright.  Do you recognize, then, that it is not necessary to collect taxes, to steal property, in order to subsidize a hopelessly incompetent and inefficient state postal system?  You do recognize this?  So that’s just one less area where you have to concern yourself about, well, shouldn’t we pay a tax to support this system?  It isn’t necessary.  And then guess what we’re going to be doing?  One by one we will eliminate all of the areas where we think it’s necessary to collect taxes.  We start with one of the easiest ones, the Post Office.

I discussed the subject of health also in that last lecture.  The state is a principal obstruction to the achievement of individual good health.  A major catastrophe that’s propagated by the state concept of medical license, is that the individual seeking, for example, medical services will, in general, assume that since the medical doctor has a license to practice upon you, that he must therefore know what he is doing.

Well, you will find there’s two kinds of incompetent medical doctors: those who have state licenses and those who do not.  And there’s two kinds of competent medical doctors:  those who have state licenses and those who do not.  You will find that in every profession there are two kinds of professionals:  those who know what they’re doing and those who do not.  Unfortunately, most people assume, that because someone is a professional, that he knows what he’s doing.  A professional simply means you earn your living in this field.  That does not mean necessarily that one is competent because he’s a professional.

Alright, we started out with a discussion of certain areas where the state claims a coercive, monopolistic priority.   We talked about, for example, the Department of Health, Education & Welfare.  I’ve discussed the subject of health.  Education will be Lecture 14.  I will now discuss the subject of welfare.   I will begin with a statement, namely, there is no such thing as a welfare case that was not first created by the state.  You’ll find that total capitalism and the total free market is what eliminates destitution.  High production is the substitute for destitution.  Destitution simply means what?  Little property.  And since property does not exist in nature, as I pointed out, land does, but not property, if there is little property, if one has little property and is therefore destitute, then there is one single solution.  There is one moral solution and all of you know what it is: generate, produce more property.  What could be simpler?

And so, total capitalism, by not interfering with property, allows the people with the greatest intelligence, ability, energy, thrift, industry, ambition, drive to become the most competent and the most productive producers.  And these competent people make it possible for even those people with the least amount of competence to obtain a relatively high standard of living.  I might point out, even today in this country, and we don’t have anything approaching total capitalism, you’ll find that some of the most unskilled laborers with the least amount of personal competence will have a higher standard of living then, let’s say, a highly skilled and highly competent laborer who may live, let’s say, in Asia or even Europe.  In America, any ditch digger who does not own an automobile does so by choice.  It is not because he could not afford it.  You realize, I don’t bring this up to pick on people who dig ditches for a living.  I simply use that as an illustration – or a truck driver, because these skills require a nominal investment to acquire the skill.  There’s very little investment in learning how to dig a ditch.  Mainly, strengthening your back muscles and leg muscles and arm muscles, if they’re not already strengthened.

I know until recently, I don’t know the situation now, but I remember not too many years ago, you could purchase a good transportation automobile for $100.  Any of you corroborate this, say maybe ten years ago or so, at least fifteen years ago, twenty years ago at least?  You could get a good transportation car for $100.  I know, I may or may not have mentioned this earlier, but I remember I was trying to sell my 1940 DeSoto convertible which, incidentally, was a beautiful car.  It had a new top on it.  It was painted powder blue.  It had skirts.  It had a rebuilt engine that only had about 25,000 miles on it.  The body was flawless, except the left rear fender had been smashed.  But other than that, it was flawless.

And I tried to sell this car.  I started out at about $300 and got no takers.  I finally dropped it to $100 and I got no takers.  It also had fairly good tires.  I finally unloaded it for $50.  And this would have been a fine transportation car and was for someone.  I wish I still had my 1940 DeSoto convertible.  I think I could get a much better price today.  As a matter of fact, in the condition it was in, I wouldn’t be surprised if you could get maybe a couple thousand dollars for it or even more.  Am I right?  I don’t know the market for such cars today.  There weren’t very many 1940 DeSoto convertibles made.  I never saw another one during the time I owned that one.

So what does a transportation car today cost?  Maybe $300, $400, $500 perhaps today, but still would you expect a ditch digger to be able to afford this?  Yes. In Asia, for example, an automobile is almost unknown, if you take all of Asia.  And even, let’s say, one possessed an automobile in Asia, what would you do with it?  What superhighways do you drive on to go out into the country?  And assuming you even had a super highway that took you out into the country, what happens when you run out of gas?  You will run out of gas.  What do you do?  Just pull over to the nearest filling station and say, “Fill her up Mac”? Or, “Fill her up Wong”, as the case may be.  Is that what you do?  No, because there isn’t any filling station.  Or when it breaks down, where do you stop to get it repaired?  How do you replace the tires when they wear out?  How many Chinese coolies you think own their own automobiles?  What do you think will be a safe answer?  Zero.  And a coolie is simply one who has what?  Little property.  If you have your own automobile, you’re not a coolie.  You can’t own your own automobile and be a coolie both.  Because that’s a large piece of property.

I’ve seen statistics, I’m sure you have, about Russia, that great productive nation of Russia.  Do you know how many automobiles, now this statistic is about five or six years old but, do you know how many automobiles, at least at this time, they had in Russia for every 1000 people?  The last time I looked it up, there were exactly – do you want to take a guess?  How many automobiles in Russia for every 1000 people?  Was it 15?  50?  I don’t know what it is now.  But about five or six years ago it was something like three automobiles for every thousand people.  Alright, let’s assume since that time they have doubled production.  That would mean six automobiles for every thousand people.  Well, I don’t know about you but most of the people I know, where there are families, where they have a number of people who are at least of driving age, most families will have more than one automobile per family certainly.  As a matter of fact, more likely the problem is they have more automobiles than they have room to park the automobile.  Is that more likely to be the case?

Some years ago there was a film produced in Hollywood that you have, perhaps, seen called Grapes of Wrath by the late John Steinbeck.  I don’t know if he wrote the screenplay but he wrote the novel.  How many have seen Grapes of Wrath?  It’s been on television and around for many years.  Probably most of you have.  The film, as you may recall, concerned the migration to California from Oklahoma of the Oklahoma sharecropper tenant farmers, the so-called Okies, as they were called at the time in particular, who were driven from their land by the drought and the Depression of the 1930s.  And here’s a film, which would be the case of almost all Hollywood films, in one form or another, would be dominantly anti-capitalistic in terms of what it projects.  Here’s a film that essentially is strongly hostile to the concept of capitalism.  And yet, this film was banned in the Soviet Union.

Alright, why would an anti-capitalistic film, of all things, be banned in Russia which is an anti-capitalistic nation?  Well, if you think about it, you can probably…I see a number of people…sure, a number of people are indicating that they figured it out.  This would be a catastrophe if they showed this film in Russia because here is a film that depicts the most downtrodden, abused, exploited people in the nation, the bottom of the barrel, doing what?  Picking up all of their belongings, plopping everything onto their Model T Fords and their trucks and doing what?  Driving off to the promised land, California, as the sun sinks slowly in the west, chugging along.  How could they show this in Russia?  Do you think, at this time, in the 1930s, how many Russian peasants, do you think, owned their own automobiles?  Again, what do you think would be a safe guess?  Exactly zero.

Alright, today, it’s 1978.  How many Russian peasants today, do you think, own their own automobiles?  I would say a safe guess is zero.  As a matter of fact, in the 1930s, if you are a peasant, you would be lucky if you had an oxcart and an ox to pull it with, let alone your own automobile.  Well, obviously, they can’t show this film in Russia.  So it was banned.

The point is, the entire reality of destitution has a single alternative in high production.  And high production can only occur on an effective basis when you do not interfere with that production.  Now, to be sure, there will always be a person who will say, “Fine, but what about the man who’s sick?  What’s he going to do?  Should he spend, for example, his life savings getting well?  Is that fair”?

Well, I would say yes. If his health, for example, is worth more to him than his life savings, then that’s exactly what he ought to do.  If he, on the other hand, chooses not to regain his health using his own money, then he simply made a value judgment.  But then I might ask, “Well, why wasn’t this man insured”?   Because, had he been insured, he might have prevented this financial catastrophe.  Again, he made a value judgement.  He chose not to be insured.  When he was well, perhaps he preferred maybe an extra week’s vacation instead of paying the annual premium on his health insurance.  Well, he took a risk.  That means, however, he was still insured.  Except it’s called, in this case, self-insurance.  In other words, he made a short term gain and he suffered a long term loss.

Well, is it justice then to steal from everyone and make them that much poorer in order that this fellow can be provided with some form of compensation in spite of his judgment, his error in judgment?  He made a mistake.  Should everyone be penalized because of this man’s blunder?  Should you be penalized because of it?  Should I, for example, who do voluntarily purchase insurance, be punished and made that much poorer just because somebody else didn’t buy health insurance?  Is this justice?  On the other hand, if a few people have to spend their entire life savings to regain their health simply because they failed to purchase the insurance in the first place, then other people can learn from their mistake.

And that, of course, is one of the beautiful things about total capitalism.  You are not barred from learning.  One of the greatest catastrophes imposed by the entire socialist mechanism is that it shields the individual from learning.  For example, under socialism, no one ever even learns that he makes a mistake in the first place because whenever he makes a mistake, what happens?  The state comes along, takes over the mistake and spreads it evenly among the community.  Well, not quite evenly.  Actually those who produce more, achieve more, and accomplish more bear a heavier load.  If one man makes a mistake, the state assumes the cost and they charge everyone else for this mistake.  They send the bill to everyone else.  Everyone suffers for the mistake except who?  The man who made it.   Which means what?  He never even learned that he made a mistake in the first place.  That is a catastrophe.  One of the greatest tragedies that can ever befall an individual is to make a mistake and not know it; to be shielded from the knowledge.  How can you learn from your mistakes if you don’t know you’re making any?  So this is one of the greatest catastrophes fostered by the entire collectivist mechanism.  It shields the individual from acquiring knowledge by learning from his mistakes.  It is a major impediment to knowledge acquisition.

In contrast, total capitalism – let’s look at that definition again.  Total capitalism is simply the societal structure that protects all property.  Within the structure of total capitalism, you are allowed to learn.  The system gives you an incentive to learn.  It places a very high premium upon learning.  But then comes along a lifeboat squared case, the double improbability case.  Someone says, “Well, what about the man who couldn’t buy insurance because, when he wanted to buy insurance, he was uninsurable”?  Alright, why was he uninsurable?   Well, it wasn’t his fault really.  He was born, perhaps, without legs or he was born blind.  Well, can such unfortunate contingencies occur to some people?  Yes, they can.  However, I might point out one way to solve this problem is higher knowledge of the science of biology.  For example, much has been done on the subject of congenital deformities and so forth.  And they’re finding out more and more about this.  And, in time, with greater knowledge, presumably the entire problem of congenital deformity can be completely obviated, completely eliminated.  It’s simply a question of greater knowledge.

In the short run, before this knowledge is available, other problems connected with it can be solved.  For example, one way to deal with this problem of a congenital deformity, is the parents can purchase the insurance.  You say, “When”?  Well, they can take out the insurance before the child is born.  You say, “Well, wait a minute.  There isn’t any such insurance.  You can’t purchase insurance that, let’s say, will cover a situation where a child is born blind and that that child will, perhaps, be  institutionalized for the rest of his life and the insurance covers all of the expenses.  You can’t purchase any insurance like that”.   As far as I know, that’s true.  You can’t.

As a matter of fact, most insurance companies won’t even issue insurance on a child that’s just born until the child is nine months or a year old or what have you.  Well, why isn’t such insurance available today?  Why can’t you take out insurance on unborn people?  Well, there are a number of reasons for this.  First of all, insurance companies must be licensed by the state.  And secondly, there’s no real market for such insurance today.

No insurance company today can operate without the permission of a local state.  And secondly, even after they do get permission to operate, every single policy, for example, that they bring out in the domain of, let’s say, health insurance, all of these policies must be approved by the state.  And why would the state even permit a policy that might even demonstrate that the state has no proper function in this area?  The state has a vested interest in not even having such policies.  The average person will say, well, of course, why should I even buy such a policy?  The state will take care of me if some unfortunate thing happens to one of my children.  And so, there’s another reason.  Here there is no real market for such insurance today because the average person probably will say, “Well, of course, you know, this will never happen to me, but even if it does, well, I can send my defective kid down to the state institution”.  As a matter of fact, there are all kinds of things that cannot be insured today simply because of the coercive intervention of the state.

You will find however, within the structure of total capitalism, again, not to be confused with historical capitalism that we call partial secondary capitalism, because I already pointed out historical capitalism is utopian.  It never could have worked in the long run because it’s incomplete.  And in particular, it leaves out protection of primary property.  Within total capitalism, everything is insurable.  There is no such thing as uninsurable.  It’s simply a question of what will be the premium.  And also you will find, that within the capitalistic structure, the insurance policy is tailored made to fit the requirements of the customer and not to fit the coercive requirements of the state.  Please note there is a difference.  You see, the insurance company, they are in business to sell you a policy.  They want to sell you a policy.  They are in business not to chase you away but to have you as a customer, a satisfied customer.  And therefore, they have a very great interest in making policies that fit your requirements and not the requirements of the state.

And so, within capitalism, everything is insurable.  To be sure, the premium could be high, especially if you wait until, let’s say, a catastrophe is inevitable.  For example, if the medical prognosis on your longevity is you have a month or so to live, plus or minus a week, and you want to take out a million dollars’ worth of life insurance, would you like to guess what the premium will be?  Exactly.  It will be close to a million dollars, discounted by a month or so.  In other words, why bother?

You will find that there are exactly two alternatives, two moral and rational, hence right alternatives, to destitution.  They are, one, high production.  Two, insurance.  That’s it.  That is the only right alternative to destitution.  Any other alternative is wrong because it’s either irrational or immoral or both.  Now to be sure, someone will bring up some particular lifeboat case.  What might they be?  Oh, someone interrupted my lecture about this time, perhaps a decade ago now, and they said, “Mr. Snelson, I just read in the newspaper, this fellow with nine kids, was struck by an automobile and killed.  His wife had to stay home and take care of the children.  They didn’t have the means to provide for them so they had to go on relief.  They required welfare.   I mean how you are going to deal with this problem”?

Of course most people assume, well, capitalism, you just let the nine kids die of starvation in the streets, right?  Well, for one thing, why didn’t the fellow purchase insurance, at least accident insurance?  Well, the answer was, well, because he couldn’t afford it.  Alright.  Let me ask you this question.  Does anyone in this room personally know someone who’s an adult and has children, who cannot afford to purchase at least accident insurance which have covered this case because the fellow was killed as a pedestrian by an automobile?  Does anyone know anyone personally who’s too poor to purchase at least some form of accident insurance?  One person.  Anyone else?  Two people.  Three.  Alright.  What does it cost to purchase accident insurance?  Here’s a policy that offers $25,000 up to $50,000 to the beneficiary of anyone killed in an accident.  It has other benefits if you’re not killed but, essentially it’s $25,000 to $50,000, depending on the type of accident.  What do you think is the annual premium on such a policy for up to, let’s say, $50,000 of insurance?  Anyone want to hazard a guess what the annual premium might be?  Yes?

Forty-eight dollars.  Alright.  Anyone else?  The annual premium.  Anyone else?  This will not affect your grade, so.  Just one person wants to guess?  $48.  Another?  How much?  Ten dollars.  Anyone else?  A hundred dollars.  Do I hear two hundred?  Well, this particular company – all your answers I would accept as reasonable answers.  This particular policy is $15 a year.  Now there were three people who raised their hands that they know someone who’s an adult with children, who could not afford this.  I would like to see if they would still say that they could not afford the $15 for such coverage.  Now, if this person, for example, had such a policy, that would certainly help out considerably with the nine kids.  Would you agree?  And for $30 a year, he could get twice the coverage.  Get yourself $50,000-$100,000 worth of accident insurance.  For $45, three times.  Does anyone say they still could not afford?  Now we’re down to no hands.

Alright.  It’s simply a value judgment.  The same guy that doesn’t have the money, supposedly doesn’t have the $15 or $20, even if it was $100 premium, to get $50,000 coverage, that’s a bargain as far as I’m concerned.  And the same guy that can’t afford it, he may have a new car sitting in the driveway.  He’s got a color television set.  He might go through $100 worth of booze each week.  Would this surprise any of you if that were the case?  It wouldn’t, would it?  And he may be on welfare which means, simply, he accepts handouts of stolen property.  Essentially, in this position, you become almost an accessory to the crime.  Even without this theory, it’s called criminal to knowingly accept stolen property.  Did you know that?  Well, where do you think this property comes from?  You say, “Well, they never figure that out”.  Probably not.

Continuing with the subject of the maintenance of products in general, and the maintenance of the product freedom, the fourth step of the ideological program, I will introduce the subject now in a little greater detail.  But before I do, I want to wave my red flag.  This is to get your attention because, as soon as I mention the name of the subject, a very large percentage of people will tune out for a large variety of reasons and the subject is insurance.  And what is the reaction, when you bring up the subject of insurance?  Oh, there might be many reactions.  Somebody might be thinking, well, everyone knows about insurance.  Insurance companies are no damn good.  Or someone else will be thinking, well, of course, I know quite a bit about insurance.  Wonder if Snelson knows that I minored in insurance when I went to the Harvard Business School?  Or someone else is thinking, well, I sold over $2 million worth of insurance last year.  I know something about insurance.  Someone else is thinking I wonder if Snelson knows I’m a vice president of an insurance company?

Without the intention of insulting anyone, which is never my intention, to insult…incidentally, if you ever felt you were insulted by anything I said in this course or ever will say, please recognize that was not the purpose of whatever was said that insulted you.  Anyhow, the first group of people who do not comprehend the importance and significance of insurance and the insurance principle are all of the people who have purchased insurance unless they understand the principles disclosed in V-50 and V-201, The Principles of Insurance, and, of course, V-30.

I would say the second group of people who don’t comprehend the significance and importance of the insurance principle are all the people who sell insurance unless they understand the principles of insurance discussed in V-50, V-201, and V-30.

And the third group of people who don’t understand the importance and significance of insurance, the grandeur of this concept, are all of the executives and all of the owners of what are called insurance companies unless they understand the principles of insurance disclosed in V-50, V-201, and V-30.

Now, to be sure, the reaction of someone could very well be, I hope it’s none of you, but someone might think, well, I’ve just about had all I can take.  You are telling me you know more about insurance than I do?

No, I’m not.  What I’m saying is, unless you understand this theory, you do not understand the importance of insurance or the significance of insurance.  That is what I am saying.  And for what it’s worth, I spent at least one year of my life as, my early days after leaving the university, spent one year of my life on one of these fancy executive training programs for a large insurance company where you learn everything from the operation of the mailroom all the way up to what they’re doing at the executive level and supposedly everything in between.  I spent a full year doing this and I did not understand the concept of insurance or its importance or significance until I took this course myself and these other courses, V-201, V-30.

Ladies and gentlemen, the innovation of the principle of insurance is so large, it is so important, it is so significant, it is so profound, practically no one understands it.  I hope this session you begin to have an understanding of its grandeur as a concept.  The history of insurance goes back a long way as some of you may know, especially if this is your field.  We have examples of merchant insurance that go back, for example, to the early Babylonian Empire.  As early as 4000 B.C., there were concepts of insurance.  The first records we have occurred in the domain of merchant insurance.  For example, a merchant would send his cargo across the Mediterranean which was a great risk.  And so, other merchants and owners of cargo and ships would get together and they would set up a concept of insurance and so forth.

Well, whether it’s four thousand years B.C. or today, the most cautious individual can, of course, be hit with a minor loss or a major catastrophe or anything in between.  Your place of business could burn to the ground.  This might force you into bankruptcy.  You might suddenly be prevented from earning a living through accident or sickness.  Your property could be burgled. On and on.  I don’t have the time now to discuss the many, many fallacies that are connected with the concept of insurance.  What I will do instead is examine the principle of insurance.

First of all, what does the insurance company actually sell?  What are they selling?  What is the nature of the product?  What they sell is a proprietary interest in your losses.  In other words, in exchange for the premium paid by the insured, they accept a proprietary interest in any loss that you may suffer with respect to the terms of that contract or what is generally called the policy.  For example, the automobile insurance company does not own a part of your automobile when you buy their insurance.  But if you have an accident, what they do own is what?  A part of the loss that you have sustained.  If you have an expensive policy, such as, let’s say, zero deductible, then the insurance company may own 100% of your loss.

Now the company does not own the automobile prior to the accident.  However, when you have an accident, what they do own is the extent that is the latitude of the damages.  They own your loss.  That’s what they own.  They have purchased your loss.  Now would you say that in general a loss is a nice thing to own?  Nevertheless, they’re willing to pay for these losses.  It will predictably occur to some of their customers, some of their policy holders, in exchange for a premium.  Or, in other words, a fee paid for a service.

Alright, here is a significant point.  The insurance company hopes that you will not suffer an accident.  And who else hopes that you will not have an accident?  Exactly, you do.  Ladies and gentlemen, this is one of the most beautiful concepts ever conceived.  The insurance company hopes that you will not have an accident.  Why?  Because they will lose.  And you will also hope you will not have an accident.  Why?  Because you will lose.  To be sure, if you do have an accident, and you would collect on the insurance, but I might point out no rational individual, for example, wants to have an accident, wants to suffer injury simply to collect on an insurance policy.  In general, you don’t commit suicide to enable your beneficiaries to collect a pile of dough.  You don’t, for example, go out and break your leg just to collect disability insurance.  You don’t blind yourself.  If anyone does this, it simply means he’s hopelessly insane. And so, the important point is you hope you do not suffer a personal injury from an accident and so does the insurance company.  This is a remarkable mechanism because both you and the insurance company have a mutual interest in your continued safety and your good health.  Both you and the insurance company have the same identical goal, namely, the continuation of your wellbeing.  In other words, the goal is mutual profit.

Alright, where’s the loser?  There isn’t one.  This is a concept for winners.  And if you have a proper concept of insurance, properly conceived, based upon the theory of primary property, you will have all winners and no losers.  Therefore, what the insurance company has really done is they purchased a proprietary interest in your wellbeing, not in your ill being.  They have a vested interested in your wellbeing.  This means you have voluntarily subscribed to the services of a company that will actually make a profit from your wellbeing.  That’s a beautiful concept.  Somebody makes a profit on your wellbeing.

As a matter of fact, that happens to be the key to a superior mechanism for the protection of all individuals and all property.  The insurance company can protect you.  They have a vested interest in seeing that you are protected.  And with this concept being properly expanded, based on the theory of primary property in particular, I have just disclosed a concept, ladies and gentlemen, if properly conceived and properly implemented, will ultimately do this.  It will obsolete all wars.  It will terminate destitution as a way of life.  I just might bring that point up.  Do the people in the insurance industry recognize that they are sitting on one of the biggest solutions of all time which, if you know how to implement it properly, will obsolete all of the wars?  No, they don’t. which means they do not understand the importance and significance of insurance.  And I don’t bring this up in any way to diminish their self-esteem or belittle them.  I’m simply saying that this is a large concept and we have to understand it.

And so, the insurance company can protect you.  In contrast, the state attacks you.  The state really doesn’t care what happens to you.  They do know, of course, that dead slaves don’t work.  At the very most, the state does want you to live and the state’s motto, of course, is, if you want to get along, do what you’re told.  In other words, yours is not to reason why, but to do or…you know the next line or word, to do or die.  Did you know that was the motto of the state?  Did they mention that in school when you took your political so-called science courses?  Yours is not to reason.  In other words, yours is not to think but to do what you’re told or you die.

The insurance company is interested in your welfare, not because they are altruistic, but simply because their profits depend upon your welfare and the welfare of all other policy holders or subscribers.  And so, all insurance companies, without exception, provide what is called a government service.  Any hazard, any contingency that you are insured against is a protection of your property and therefore is a proper government function.  Let’s look again at the definition of government and see if it applies to the insurance mechanism.  A government is any person, volitional being or organization which sells goods and/or services, the purpose of which is to protect property, to which the owner of that property can voluntarily subscribe.  Alright, does this apply to the insurance mechanism?  You purchase the insurance protection.  You become a subscriber then to a government service.  The insurance mechanism protects you from one of the greatest sources of risk, namely, the unforeseen contingency.  No matter how smart you are, you cannot anticipate all possible catastrophes.

Earlier, I introduced you to the lifeboat case mentality.  This is a fellow who spends his time thinking up lifeboat cases to justify the immoral actions of the state where application, then, of a government protection service, namely insurance, solves the problem of the unforeseen contingency, the so-called lifeboat cases.  Look at it this way.  Every individual, when he becomes an adult, will make the following decision.  One, I will assume 100% of the risks of life.  Or, two, I will hire someone else to assume part of my risk.  Guess what?  That covers all possibilities, doesn’t it?  At least all moral possibilities.  And since it’s not possible for someone to assume 100% of your risks, then you can either try to assume all of them yourself or hire someone else to assume part of that risk.  And so, assuming you get born in the first place, either you will purchase insurance protection or you will not.    And so, insurance, ladies and gentlemen, plus high production is the grand alternative to all destitution, all poverty which, again, simply means what?  Little property.  And there is no other right alternative.  All of the other alternatives beyond this are wrong.

You will find that there is also an inefficient and a temporary alternative to destitution.  It’s one you’ve all heard of.  It is called charity.  Let me ask you this question.  Is there anyone in the room when faced with, for example, with someone knocking on your door – you go to the door and someone is standing there with a collection basket or envelope.  They’re collecting for the Community Chest or the Heart Fund or the Cancer Association or whatever they call themselves or some local….it could be an adult or some kid, or what have you, at your doorstep.  Is there anyone who has either not given this person anything at all or given them something but less than you thought you could have really given or should have given and had a feeling of guilt after such an encounter?  Since I have fallen into this category, I will raise my hand.  Have any of you ever been in this position where you had a feeling of guilt?  You really could have given more.  You say, “Gee, I really only have a dollar now with me”.  And you know you could have dug down more deeply or you could have written a check.  Probably the majority of people have felt this way.  I know I have.

The only way that you could have assumed this guilt feeling is if you had accepted a number of false premises.  There is no other way you could get the guilt without the acceptance of a number of false premises.  Charity is, first of all, a capitalistic alternative to destitution because it is completely moral.  It’s moral when, of course, it’s voluntary.  Anything that’s not voluntary is, of course, the opposite.  It’s coercive and therefore cannot be called charity.  I presume that you recognize that the Social Security bust is not charity, but is a swindle.  It’s a fraud.  It’s coercion.  On the other hand, if one man has a lot of property that he’s morally accumulated and produced and he wishes to give some of this property to someone who has less property, and there will always be someone with less property, this act of charity will be moral.  It is not immoral.

I like to point out certain things about charity.  First of all, charity can only exist on a widescale basis within a capitalistic society because, in or der to provide charity, you have to be sufficiently wealthy.  In order to give charity, you must be capable of fulfilling, first of all, your own requirements for survival.  This can only happen in a prosperous society.  Remember, when you’re starving to death, you don’t invite a stranger over to dinner.  When you’re starving to death, you may not even invite your friends over to dinner, let alone a stranger.  Am I right?  And so, it’s capitalism that actually makes charity possible in the first place.  And you will find it is the very same capitalism that will make charity unprofitable and unnecessary in the long run.  Like it or not, this theory totally obsoletes the entire concept of charity.  Obsolete means what?  A superior alternative.

First of all, charity happens to be one of the most inefficient, if not the most humiliating, of any market transactions.  It’s a very important thing that you recognize that charity is, in fact, a market transaction.  Most people do not recognize this.  And it becomes a market transaction through a concept called primary property.  Charity represents simply an exchange of primary property for secondary property.

Let’s look at it from the standpoint of the donor.  Why does the donor give?  It gives him satisfaction to do so.  Otherwise, he wouldn’t donate his money.  This is compatible with the first postulate that all volitional beings live to pursue happiness as they see it, on a subjective basis.  And so, all that happens is the donor gives up his secondary property in exchange for primary property in terms of what?  Well, personal satisfaction.  This may include a gain in his own self-esteem.  The fact that he’s able to give makes him feel, perhaps, proud of himself.  And so, it gives him a primary property gain.

From the standpoint of a donor, then, he is exchanging some of his secondary property, for which presumably he has a substantial amount.  This is in exchange for primary property satisfaction which, obviously, he values more.  From the standpoint of the recipient, he’s in a desperate condition in terms of secondary property.  Therefore, he considers himself in a state of destitution, of want, of need.  Such a person will accept a secondary property handout in exchange for what?  What does the person who accepts this handout of secondary property, what does he give up in exchange?  You see the property he gives up?  One of the most valuable properties he has.  It’s called self-esteem; the esteem of one’s self.

Ladies and gentlemen, it is a humiliating experience to be a beggar.  The beggar gives up primary property to gain secondary property.  The donor gives up secondary property to gain primary property.  Now, as I indicated, this is a moral market transaction, but you cannot call it an efficient market transaction.  And this does not provide the best means of eliminating individual destitution.  If the individual, for example, becomes accustomed to always being the recipient of a handout, ultimately he loses all of his self-respect and he becomes, essentially, a worthless bum.  And so, rather than beg for property, it’s better to acquire it contractually and return it ultimately with some form of rental fee or interest.

You see, capitalism will teach individuals to respect their ego, to respect their own worth.  And it is capitalism, total capitalism, that ultimately will render charity a relatively infrequent, if not altogether, nonexistent market transaction.  One reason why I’m afraid why so many people become involved in charity, there are people, you know, who dedicate their entire life to charity.  That’s all they do virtually: campaigning for this charity, actively participating in fundraising or what have you.  And I would say, much of the time, one of the reasons they do this is they do not know how to acquire self-esteem through high production, through innovation, through positive accomplishment, through hard work, producing a useful product, consumable product, either tangible or intangible.  And not knowing how to acquire self-esteem in this way, they do it in the only way they know how.  And, if for no other reason, it gives them a feeling of superiority.  The one who gives the handouts has a feeling of superiority over the one who accepts it.

And how common is the situation where the one who continually is the recipient of this handout, how common a situation is it that the one who accepts the handout, perhaps tacitly, in his own mind is resentful of the fact that he has to accept the handout or is in this position.  And his resentment will be directed commonly toward the one who gives him the handout.  This may result in even hatred.  This is not uncommon, is it?  How many are aware that this thing happens and that charity generates hatred and unhappiness?

Well, what do you do?  Let’s say you’re walking up the street and you see a man on the corner selling pencils.  Maybe he’s missing his arms or his legs.  And you’ve all seen, all of you have seen such people someplace on the street.  In one particular case, a man was on the corner.  He had a hat which was filled up with these Eberhard Faber yellow lacquered colored pencils.  As I recall, No 2.5 lead which is the better lead.  It’s between the 2, which is a little too soft, and the 3.  Do you know what I’m talking about, the 2.5 lead?  Anyhow, I remember this particular case, this is what he was selling.  He was selling these pencils.  I think they were a nickel a pencil.  Presumably some years ago, of course, if they were selling for a nickel.  Either a nickel or a dime.  I don’t remember exact details of that but I remember I tossed a quarter in the hat and picked out a pencil and went on my way.

Alright.  Was this an act of charity on my part?  I threw a quarter in for a nickel or dime pencil, whichever it was.  Was this an act of charity?  Yes.  In other words, if the pencil was a dime, I gave him a fifteen-cent handout.  You say, well, wasn’t that a compromise of your principles to do that?  No.  First of all, you see, I can morally do this.  The only other question, then, is it rational to do this?  Why did I do this?  For this reason, ladies and gentlemen.  This man is too late for the solution which I’m teaching.

First of all, how did he lose his legs?  What might be a common reason for a man to be missing limbs?  War?  Do you think that’s a pretty common reason?  I think so.  For all I know, maybe this man might have been a World War II veteran.  It’s possible.  Or World War I or something.  Or earlier.  And maybe he was someplace in a foxhole in France or you name it, as a soldier, defending this nation from external aggression.  Maybe he was doing this when I was in my kidhood days, too young to be in any position to defend this country.  Maybe I even owe him something.  Is that conceivable?  Is that possible?  Maybe he’s provided value to me.  Is that possible?  It is, isn’t it?  I don’t know this.  You can be certain I’m not going to ask him, “Excuse me sir, but I would be interested in knowing, would you tell me something about your life”?  Obviously, I’m not so presumptuous I’m going to ask this fellow, “Well, how did this catastrophe occur to you”?  And even beyond that, I don’t have the time to stop and chat with him.  I’m on my way somewhere presumably.

Well, it’s conceivable I could owe him something.  And do I get self-esteem from this?  Well, I will concede there’s some self-esteem in doing this, but please note, this is not the principle source of my self-esteem; not through charity.  In time, these problems will be terminated.  Either the congenital deformity or the war or even accidents.  I’ll discuss the subject of accidents today if we get time.  The reason there are so many accidents on the highways is because we don’t know what we’re doing on the whole subject.  That applies to everything.  We don’t know what we’re doing, on any subject.  You name it.  We don’t know what we’re doing.  Other than that, we’re doing pretty good.

Some years ago, I was…a friend of mine was visiting me.  I used to live in West Hollywood, some years ago.  And I was up on Sunset Boulevard showing him around the area a little bit.  And we were walking along the sidewalk there on the Sunset strip.  Most of you, I’m sure, are familiar with this area of Los Angeles – it’s called a strip because it’s a little strip, as you know, of LA County, not a part of LA city.  And we were walking along from a club there on the corner called, I believe it was the Whiskey A-goo-goo, or something like that.  Is there a Whiskey A-goo-goo?  A-go-go.  What difference does it make?  Anyhow, I really knew it was A-go-go.

And at the other end of the block was the old Hamburger Hamlet.  I don’t think it’s there anymore.  Anyhow, the original Hamburger Hamlet.  And we were walking along there and there was a lot of young people.  I would say teenagers, probably in their late teens, people in their early twenties.  And walking along there and one of them addresses and says, I’d never heard this question before.  And he said to me, I think he was a young man in his late teens, he said, “Excuse me, do you have any spare change”?

“What?   Uh”?

And then not too further, I go along, and someone else, I think it was a girl, asked me, “Do you got any spare change”?  I thought, maybe I got the message, and I said, “Well, yes.  As a matter of fact, I do”.  And I reached into my pocket and I just happened to have a big pocketful of change.  And I pulled it out and I said, “Yes.  I have a whole pocketful here of change.  In fact, well now that you asked, I always keep change with me because you never know.  You might have to go into a phonebooth and make a phone call.  Or parking meters eat these up on a regular basis.  Why do you ask”?

You can imagine that the response was one that I cannot even repeat here.  And I was immediately confronted with this vitriolic diatribe and, of course, all of the anti-capitalistic insults.  Of course, wearing a business suit, naturally I represent the establishment and the bad guys and so forth.  And, of course, that stands for capitalism, the hated capitalism.  But you notice the hypocrisy here?  Where does this so-called spare change come from?  I said, “You know, I have to work for this spare change.  Why don’t you try production as a means of acquiring spare change?  That’s how I get my spare change”.  Obviously, as I say, that’s not how you run a popularity contest.

Incidentally, these people, when you’re at this level, you have reached the bottom of the barrel.  Because I don’t think you can sink any lower than the level of parasitism.  These people are total zeroes which is an overstatement.  They’re garbage.  I wouldn’t be surprised if some of them were even college graduates or, at least, had gone to college.  Would you be surprised?

And I might also point out, there’s a very large difference between the man on the corner selling the pencils and the young man or woman that says, “Have you got any spare change”?  There’s quite a difference, isn’t there?  Because at least that fellow is offering, I can’t even say he was asking for a handout, he was actually selling a product, a pencil.  That’s one of the most useful products ever conceived by the human mind.  Did you know that?  There have probably been more achievements accomplished with a pencil with an eraser than probably any other single product you can identify.  That’s where the greatest ideas come from: a pencil with an eraser and paper.  You’re selling a very useful product.  And I have much more respect for him than I do one of these zeroes who says, “Have you got any spare change?”

These are things that we don’t normally think of begging and I always get hostility someplace when I bring this up.  But, in general, what is the concept of thumbing a ride?  Does that involve asking for a handout?  In general, the answer is yes, it does. What’s the handout?  A ride.  Now it’s moral to thumb rides. Now you could also do it properly in the following way.  You might say, well, I would like a ride to San Francisco.  I’m willing to pay for half the gasoline.  Alright, that would be proper.  You’re willing…you don’t want it for nothing.  You’ll pay for half the gasoline.  Alright.  Well, that’s proper.  That does not mean, however, you are paying for half the cost of getting to San Francisco.  You do recognize this, especially if you own an automobile?  Paying half the gas does not come anywhere near paying half the cost but I would say that’s certainly proper.  Or pay a quarter of it or something, but not zero.  That can be proper.

However, when it’s on the basis of need, have you ever had the experience, some fellow is out there thumbing a ride and looking at you intently as you come up the road?  You know?  And you ignore them and you just drive on.  Have you ever experienced this gesture quickly turning into another one?

Look at the hypocrisy of this.  What’s he saying?  His need for a ride represents a rightful claim upon me.  Baloney, it does.  And then you get this feeling of guilt because you didn’t pick him up.  Same thing with the guy at the door collecting a handout for something.  Incidentally, the total answer to this subject is still moral with the theory of primary property and how you, for example, deal with problems like heart disease, cancer.  How you do this is explained within the structure of the theory of primary property.  I’ll give you a clue though.  One reason why these problems linger so long is the approach to dealing with them is wrong.  You have to have a whole new concept of how do we deal, for example, with disease.  And that’s part of the theory of primary property.

And, again, the fellow thumbing the ride, probably he also is likely to be strongly anti-capitalistic.  His resentment is toward the guy with the automobile or the resentment of the guy with a little automobile toward the guy with a big automobile. That’s anti-capitalism.  Incidentally, there’s another reason not to thumb rides.  It’s dangerous.  I am absolutely appalled at what I see on the streets.  Young girls, teenage girls, in their tight sweaters, out there thumbing rides.  Talking about a disaster looking for a place to happen.  As a matter of fact, if I had teenage children residing in my residence, I would make it a contractual condition for living in my house, they will not thumb rides.

And how often does it happen where you feel sorry for some fellow?  You pick him up and he thanks you for the lift by sticking a gun in your back or robbing you or mugging you or shooting you or killing you.  And so, it’s irrational to pick up.  Thirty years ago, it wasn’t quite as bad as it is today and it gets progressively worse as our entire culture disintegrates.  It will get worse and worse and worse and not better.

Of course, the state complicates the problem by saying that, well, you can’t drive an automobile, what is it?  Sixteen in the state of California?  Can you still get a license at sixteen?  Can you?  Alright.  Well, isn’t there any law of nature that says you couldn’t be a competent driver at fifteen?  No.  You can have a better driver at fifteen, who is a better driver than somebody who’s forty or fifty. Is that possible?  Certainly.  As a matter of fact, I first started driving when I was sixteen and that’s when I was the best driver, when I was sixteen, seventeen.  I’ve gotten progressively worse.  I am a terrible driver today.  Around the only time I’m a good driver is when I’m speeding or something like that because that’s when I’m alert.  As a matter of fact, there’s a reason for this.  In general, there are exceptions certainly, but the more an individual spends his time thinking and concentrating on concepts and ideas in general, the poorer driver he will be.  And in general, the less intelligent is and the less thinking he will do, in general, the better driver he will be.  Anyhow.

I’d like to further illustrate this concept of the total inefficiency of the charity mechanism.  Incidentally, don’t misinterpret my words.  If you are a good driver, that does not necessarily mean that I’m saying you are unintelligent.  You know, they do teach anthropoid apes, chimpanzees, to be excellent drivers.  You do know this?  I’m not joking.  Do you know this?  Anyhow.

I want to illustrate the inefficiency of the charity mechanism.  You didn’t hear this story in Florida about the guy who was driving up in his little roadster along the tax way in Florida?  And a highway patrolman was busy hiding behind the sign board waiting for his next victim.  And he saw this little red roadster go by and he thought he saw some kind of a monkey, chimpanzee type, actually at the wheel driving.  And he quickly thumbs through the vehicle code book.  There’s nothing covering this.  So this is always a disaster.  How do we deal with it?  So he called ahead to the next guy waiting behind the next sign board for the next victim.  And sure enough, he corroborated that the one driving looked like some kind of an ape or something.  And so, they went chasing this car.  Red light comes on.  Pull him over.  And sure enough, behind the wheel, it happened to be a chimpanzee, I think, was a well-dressed chimpanzee with a smoking jacket on.  He had a little British sports car racing cap, smoking a cigar.

And the patrolman comes up.  There was a big blast of smoke in the patrolman’s face.  And the owner of the chimpanzee and the roadster was on the passenger side.  The owner was arrested, I think, for reckless driving or something which was an absurdity because this chimpanzee was, you know, going right down the highway doing a beautifully fine job of driving.  And the reason he does a good job is because it takes all of his intellectual capability to handle this.  So he’s intent and alert.  I’m so bored when I get behind, as my friends will tell you, that I’m so bored, as soon as I get behind the wheel, I fall asleep.

I want to illustrate the inefficiency of the whole mechanism of charity.  How many times have you seen a giant industry operate a charity mechanism?  How many times have you seen an automobile company or a tomato juice company or any other major company provide any product, any service operating a charity mechanism?  For example, what if the chairman of the board one day, of General Motors, calls a press conference and he says, “We are now establishing a new policy here at General Motors.  From now on, anyone who needs an automobile, all you have to do is come down to our warehouse in Detroit and you pick out the model, color, the fabric of upholstery that you want.  And we’ll do this on a first come, first served basis.

Now, to be sure, the only way that we can stay in business is if the good citizens of America, the good people of the community, give us money to operate.  So we’re going to pass the hat and you give us what you think we’re worth and give us what you can spare and we’ll just keep operating as best we can.  For example, if you give us a $1000 donation, we will issue a certificate indicating your cooperation.  For a $5000 donation, we will issue a letter signed by the president and the chairman of the board, personally signed.  If you would like to give us a $10,000 donation, we will put your name on a little gold plaque which will be in the main lobby; there for all to see.  And we will call that a lifetime continuing membership”.  Etcetera, etcetera, etcetera.

Alright.  Just how many automobile production companies operate on this basis?  They don’t; obviously they don’t.  Now would you say there is any law of nature that says they could not do this?  Well, it’s possible.  But I would say it approaches impossibility.  What if they actually do this?  What if they make this announcement: “Alright, new policy.  Come to Detroit.  Pick up the model you want, the color, etcetera.  We’ll make it available on a first come, first serve basis”.

Alright.  Do you think they would get any takers?  Takers?  Takers?  Ladies and gentlemen, as soon as the announcement was released, and people believed that it was true, there would be a stampede of hordes of people descending upon Detroit.  Am I right?  And within a short time, the entire inventory of General Motors would be stripped bare.  Is that predictable?  Indeed.  And, what would happen then?  The last automobile is gone.  The mob keeps coming.

“Hey, where’s our automobile”?

“Hey, where’s our automobile”?

“Hey, we’ve been swindled”.

“We demand our automobile”.

And within a short time, you know what would happen?  The entire facilities of General Motors would be demolished.  Is this predictable?  We’ve been swindled.  You promised us an automobile.  And someone would say, “Hey, there’s Ford.  They’ve got automobiles.  Let’s get Ford”.  And the mob would descend on Ford and Ford would be wiped out.  And Chrysler.  Do you think this is an exaggeration?  It is not.  That’s exactly what would happen.  I don’t think it would work.

Witness this fiasco, for example, with the Hearst family.  When a senior Hearst is subjected to extortion and so forth, and he’s told if you ever want to see your kid again, then you better give us X million dollars’ worth of food, etcetera.  And then they proceeded to dispense this food.  I think it was out in Oakland someplace.  Is that right?  And what happened?  Did they get takers for the handouts of free food?  There was a mob descending on this dispensing area of this property, stolen property.  And it quickly turned into a riot, everybody clamoring for his fair share.  Is this what happened?

And then, most disgusting, you could see people being interviewed, you know, standing in line.  What was the reaction of this?

“Well, it’s about time we got our fair share”.

And others say, “We should have been taken care of a long time.  It’s about time somebody’s doing something about our situation”.

It shows you the degeneracy.  I don’t know.  I can’t really say for certain but I think even during America’s Great Depression, I don’t think we were that far down the drain that this kind of thing would have happened.  And I think if something like this had happened, there might have been a few people going up there to get these handouts on this basis, through extortion.  And there might have been other people up there unhappy about this who might have punched all of these people right in the nose.  I say I can’t say for certain that might have happened during the Depression, but more likely so.

Well, what about another product, freedom?  Shouldn’t we, if not donating for automobiles, shouldn’t we donate at least for a worthy product or a worthy cause like, let’s say, freedom?  Is freedom a worthy cause?  No.  Do you know why?  You may not like this.  But there is no such thing as a worthy cause.  If it’s a cause, it’s unworthy.  The whole concept of cause is wrong.  It is a wrong concept.  When one serves a cause, it becomes a form of self-sacrifice.  When you subordinate your own goals in life for that of the cause, it is a wrong concept.

And so, ladies and gentlemen, you cannot achieve this product, freedom, you cannot achieve this product, freedom, by donating for freedom.  That’s not how you accomplish it.   You cannot achieve freedom by praying for freedom.  I know this offends some people but it is observationally corroborable that, for example, any product, you name it. freedom, tape recorders, that is not the source of the product, namely prayer.  You can have four billion people praying for tape recorders and they will not suddenly appear out of nothingness.  A tape recorder is not available by praying.  If it were, it would be a violation of the first law of thermodynamics, the law of conservation of energy.  It would be something for nothing.  And something for nothing is always unavailable, at all time in all places.  It is unavailable.  Just as the perpetual motion machine is unavailable.  The reason?  Because it would require something for nothing.

And so, this is a product.  It is not a cause.  And you will find there is a program that can implement all products.  And this program is called the ideological program.  And the product, freedom, will be implemented through this mechanism.  And I will demonstrate in later sessions of this course how you can implement all products through the ideological program, also called the product development program.  And through these four steps, not only will we implement freedom, but we will maintain it in the fourth step of the ideological program.  And it is possible, as you will see, to maintain the product freedom indefinitely once you achieve it.  It is simply a maintenance concept.  That will be and should be clearer as this theory begins to unfold.

In the second half of this lecture, I’m going to be discussing such subjects as the transportation, construction, maintenance of what are called roads.  Of course people will ask this question: “Well, who but the state, could control all of the roads”?

“Why, it’s inconceivable that any one company or companies, any private companies, could possibly build and maintain all of the roads, millions of miles of roads.  If ever there was a problem that’s too big for private enterprise, it would be building all the roads”.

Alright.  Well, these are standard, cliché objections.  And we’ll deal with this aspect of it.  I’ll talk about traffic safety and other subjects of interest to you, I hope, in the second half of this lecture.  Before we have a break, I have at least a few announcements.

 

I will now continue with the second half of Lecture #10.  The subject I will discuss is the subject I indicated previously, namely, how can you build a transportation network, a road network, how can you maintain roads; before that, properly construct roads?  Of course, the common position, with hardly an exception, would be, well, obviously, this is a function of the state.

Alright, the first question is what is the purpose of a road?  Why even have a road?  Well, the obvious answer is the purpose of a road is to make it possible for vehicles with wheels to move from area A to area B more efficiently and smoothly and effectively than they could without the roads.  For example, you can take your finest Detroit bathtub and of what value would it be if there were no roads?  Well, it would have limited utility.  That is, the utility would approach zero without roads.  And so, a road is a service that has a market value.  And so, a private company builds roads and then they charge a fee for the use of the road.  And then the average fellow says, “Wait a minute.  You mean to tell me that I have to pay for all of these roads?  Look, I’ve got a right to these roads.  The roads are mine.  Or they belong to the public.  Therefore, the road is mine”.

Oh, is it?  To whom does the road belong?  It belongs to the one who built it.  Alright, do you have a right to a road?  Obviously not.  Well, do you have a right to a job?  Are we told that everybody has a right to a job?  Well, the answer in both cases is no.  You don’t have a right to a road.  You don’t have a right to a job.  Why?  Jobs and roads have this in common.  They do not exist in nature.  There are no jobs in nature.  There are no roads in nature.

Of course, everyone thinks they have free use of the roads.  They’re not free.  As you know, in the state of California, there’s an eleven cents per gallon tax for every gallon of gasoline you purchase.  And then they add insult to injury.  They put a sales tax on top of that.  And then they have the audacity to charge you sales tax on top of the eleven cent tax.  In other words, you’re paying tax on the tax.  Of course, that’s nothing new for the state.

But don’t even be fooled by this.  This is only the extent of the admitted amount of the tax.  I should point out that gasoline has far more hidden taxes than could possibly be ever measured.  Standard Oil could sell you gasoline much more cheaply if they didn’t have to pay, for example, corporation taxes where half their profits are demolished.  And then they have to pay property taxes, thousands of other hidden taxes, regulations, restrictions, controls that they have to contend with on a daily, by minute, basis.  And is not the same argument true for everyone who’s involved in the production and ultimate distribution of gasoline from the time the oil, let’s say, is pumped out of the ground as crude oil and it goes through all of the procedures and finally it is pumped into your tank as gasoline?

What if all of these people didn’t have to contend with the taxation and the regulation?  For example, the owner of the gas station, the trucker that drives the gasoline to the station, the company who owns the refinery, the owner of the oil well, the company that drills the well, the company that manufactures the drilling equipment, etcetera.  All of these people pay very heavy taxes.  All of this is reflected in the price of a gallon of gasoline.

What do you think a gallon of gasoline would cost if all of the taxes were removed?  I don’t have any idea.  But the most I could imagine a gallon of gasoline would cost, if there were no taxes, would be a nickel.  And I’m sure that’s way on the high side.  Two gallons per nickel?  A penny a gallon?  You don’t think so?  If all the taxes were removed, at these ridiculous prices, the oil companies could make profits greater than they ever dreamed of.

And what happens to your standard of living if, let’s say, premium gas sells for a nickel a gallon, regular for 3¢?  What would happen to your standard of living?  Would it go up or down?  It goes up.  And the greater amount of money that you now allocate for gasoline, to the tune of 60¢ a gallon, 70¢ a gallon, or whatever you pay, the money you save could then be spent on other things which includes even more gasoline.  You could afford more trips.  It gets expensive, you know.  If you’re talking about, for example, saving money as a means of, for example, depending on where you’re going, But I can fly to San Francisco for less than I can drive, roundtrip as a single person.  Now maybe you load four or five people in your car.  That might be different in terms of the total cost for transportation.  But if there’s just one person going – you’ve figured this out, I’m sure, if you’ve done this.  Of course, there’s advantages even there because you do have transportation when you get to San Francisco.  I’m not saying you shouldn’t do it, but, if you’re just talking about the cost, it’s cheaper to fly and certainly faster.  You get there in an hour.

And so, we’re paying for the roads now.  Every time you pay a federal income tax, a state income tax, a sales tax, a gasoline tax, every time you pay a tax, a part of that tax is used for the construction and the maintenance of roads.  You’ve seen the signs along the federal highways that tell you what a great thing they’re doing for you; X millions spent for your beautiful federal highway.  Have you seen these signs?  So as you get the roads free and the schools free and everything else that the state provides on a free basis, that’s a major part of the delusion.  That’s a part of the swindle, a part of the fraud.

Now, about this time, someone will say, “Wait a minute.  You mean to tell me, Snelson, you mean to tell me that if all of these roads are privately owned, that every time I want to use one of these roads I got to stop and pay a toll?  That’s ridiculous.  Do you realize how much of my time would be wasted if I’m always stopping to pay some ridiculous toll”?

The same fellow, who’s worried about stopping to pay a toll, might spend a week filling out his income tax, another twenty weeks or more to pay for the tax, and he’s worried about stopping now and then to pay for a toll.  Even more than this, you don’t have to stop and pay a toll, especially if you are a regular user of the road.  Like most problems of this kind, technology, innovation, can easily solve the problem with no great difficulty.

For example, let me ask you this, does the electric light company, do they charge you a bill every time you flip on a light switch?  Does the gas company, Southern California Gas Company, do they charge you a bill every time you boil a pot of coffee?  No.  Why don’t they do this?  Do they have the technology to send you a bill every day?  Certainly.  Two bills a day.  Why don’t they do this?  All of you know the answer, why they don’t do it?  Because all of their profits would be eroded with the cost of billing.  It would be gigantic.  Just the postage alone would probably drive them into insolvency.  And so, what do they do?  Very simple concept.  They meter, which means measure, the amount that you use each month.  And they add up all of the little usages.  And then at the end of a given period, a month or every two months, they send you a bill.  Instead of four thousand bills or so, you get one bill.  That’s rational.

Alright.  Generalize.  A system of metering could easily be adapted to road usage.  There’s many ways this could be done.  A simple way would be, for example, each automobile has a transmitter that transmits a coded signal.  As you enter the road, a sensor picks up this code number that’s given to you and you alone.  It records where you got on, which of course includes who you are,  and then another sensor picks up where you get off.  Very simple concept.  It all can be done by computer.  We’ve had this technology capability for years.  And you can even get a printout at the end of the month for all your usage, stating where you got on, when you got on, what day you got on, where you got off.  And then this computes the amount of the fee for a certain number of miles used.  This is no difficulty.  The phone company does this.  If they don’t provide it, you can ask them for it and you’re aware of the fact, for example, you’re making long distance calls, do they not identify the time of the call, the number you are calling, the cost of the call, where it actually went to, the town, and the number you called?  Do you get all this, as a printout, at the end of the month?  Certainly.  There’s no difficulty, especially when it’s done through computer technology.  Alright, you generalize that to all kinds of things and apply it to roads.

Alright.  Let’s see how we might go about building a road.  Let’s build a transcontinental highway from Los Angeles to New York City.  Would you say that there would be a demand for a road going from, let’s say, Los Angeles to New York?  Can you visualize such a demand?  Certainly. And even stopping off at places in between: St. Louis or what have you? Certainly.  Alright.  So a road construction company, in the business of building and maintaining roads, they start building a superhighway, starting out in New York; another section of the construction starting from Los Angeles.  And they’re going to rendezvous, complete the road, somewhere in the middle of Arkansas on a specific date.

And things are moving properly.  People are cooperating along the way, selling their land and making it available to build the road.  Things are moving quite nicely until something happens.  And this is what someone will lay awake at nights worrying about.  In other words, she’s worrying about how can we solve this problem?  And he’s going to give us a reason why we can’t do it morally.  That’s what all the lifeboat cases are about.  Why you can’t solve this problem without a gun.  Why you can’t solve it morally.  We know there’s an immoral solution.  We’ve always done it this way.  You recognize this?  That’s the lifeboat case?

And sure enough, it happens.  Right out there, the road is almost finished, and suddenly without warning, in the middle of Arkansas, some dumb farmer, with a huge section of land, absolutely refuses to sell to the road company.  And the road company executives are offering him a very good price.

He says, “I ain’t selling”.   And they double that.  “Get out.  Get off my land”.  They offer him triple the going, quadruple.

“Sir, you must cooperate.  The road is almost….we will offer you ten times the normal value of this land”.

“Get out I said”.

Alright, can this Farmer Smith, or whatever his name is, in Arkansas, can he morally tell the road company to get out?  Is he taking advantage of the road company?  And incidentally, if that is to scale, he’s got a pretty big hunk of land, doesn’t he?

“I’ll tell you what I’ll do.  For city slickers, I’ll make a special deal.  A million dollars a linear foot”.  There’s lots of feets there, foots, excuse me. If that’s to scale, there’s lots of foots, right?  Is now this Farmer Smith taking advantage of the road company?  What is a fair offer to part with your property?  There is no such thing as an unfair offer, assuming no prior contract.

He finally says, “My price is infinity”.

An infinite number of dollars.  No matter how large the road company is, no matter how great the magnitude of their capitalization, can they afford an infinite number of dollars?  No.  Alright.  How do we deal with this problem?  How does the state deal with this problem?  Exactly.  There ought to be a law.  And the first thing you know, there is.  And the property is confiscated at gunpoint.  Is this how the state deals with it?  Imminent domain.  And maybe this farmer is living in the farmhouse that he’s had there on this farm, maybe for 150 years, that one of his ancestors built.  Can you visualize the bulldozer going right through the middle of the farmhouse and demolishing it?  All legal.  All “proper”.  And there’s nothing the farmer can do about it to stop it.  Can you visualize this happening?  Does this happen?  Yes, on a regular basis.

In other words, the road company’s need represents a rightful claim upon Farmer Smith.  We need this road.  We need the right of way.  Ditto we need this land for a hospital or we need it for a school.  It’s confiscated because we need it.  Do you want our kids to grow up illiterate?  Alright, seize the land.  You want people to die because there’s no hospital to go to?  Seize the land.  Brilliant.  Just brilliant.

Alright, can you think of a moral solution to this problem?  Anyone?  What’s a moral solution?  I heard faint echoes of go around.  How many say go around the land?  That’s quite a number of you.  Do you realize what you’re saying ladies and gentlemen?  Go around?  Do you realize how big that hunk of land is?  Do you want to see what that would look like?  There’s a kink in the road.  Are we going to allow this?  The road is crooked.  Here’s this beautiful road, mostly straight, and now there’s a big kink in the road.  Can we allow this?  Can we?  What’s the solution?  Shoot him.  Get rid of Farmer Smith.  He won’t cooperate.

Alright.  So there’s a kink in the road.  Is that the end of the world?  So what?  Would you like to live in a world where all of the roads are perfectly straight and at right angles with all other roads?  Would you?  I wouldn’t.  That’s Dullsville for one thing.  I’m sure you’ve driven across a desert sometimes where the road just goes straight as an arrow, on and on and on, disappearing over the horizon, on and on and on.  It never bends.  It never veers.  The next thing you know you wake up.  You’re knocking over cactus plants.  It’s so damn boring.

What if you want to build a road that will give you access to a river, along a river bank?  Will this be a straight road?  Not if you want access to the river.  Why?  Because nature does not design straight rivers.  There is no such thing as a straight river in nature.  Have you noticed?  And even when man comes along and he says we’re going to straighten out nature.  We’re going to straighten out the river and they build a straight channel with big reinforced concrete blocks and steel.  And have you noticed that nature does not always cooperate and sometimes will rip out all of the steel and the concrete and the river goes on its way as it wants to.  To hell with this nonsense.  We’re going our own way.  That’s kind of personifying the river, I recognize, but anyhow, you get the point.

Let’s saying you’re building a road and you got to go through the Rocky Mountains.  What do you do when you get to the Rocky Mountains?  Tunnel under the Rockies?  That’s a bit expensive.  Or you come to one of these big Rocky Mountains and you could go straight up the mountain, straight down the backside.  You really pick up speed going down the back side, you know?  Three hundred miles an hour in your Detroit bathtub!  Although, if you have a blowout at three hundred miles an hour, this does present certain problems.

Alright, that’s not efficient.  What is the efficient thing to do?  Well, try to find the path of least resistance.  Like maybe go through the pass.  But does nature provide us a straight path through the Rockies?  No.  So what do you do?  Well, you have to do the best you can.  Maybe you can smooth some of these turns out, but ultimately you’re going to have some kind of winding road.  Still maybe a high speed road, but somewhat winding through the mountains. Yes?  Alright.

So who wants roads that are always perfectly straight and at right angles with all other roads in the first place?  Who needs it?  Who even wants it?  I don’t.  Beyond this, however, the lifeboat case I have just given you, which is in fact a lifeboat case, wouldn’t even likely happen.  I have intentionally given you a lifeboat case problem and shown you how to morally solve it.  Go around him.

This is what happened.  The people who will be building transcontinental highways will not be idiots.  This will never happen.  If that kind of thing happens, very often it means they’re idiots and they won’t make a success in the road business.  What will they do?  First of all, is there only one ideal path to put a road between New York and Los Angeles and all others are unacceptable?  Obviously not.  So the road company, the first thing they will do is set out the road engineers and so forth and geologists and whoever they have.  And they will survey certain routes. They will look at various potential routes.  And there isn’t any one particular one that is supremely superior to every other one.  There will be certain ones that have certain advantages and disadvantages.  Others will have other advantages and still others disadvantages.  Is this what you would likely find?  Yes.  Alright.

And further, what they will do is this.  They will purchase a concept you’ve heard of called a low cost option.  And they will purchase options for the right of way.  And when they get an option on the right of way they want, then they begin to exercising these options.  And they go to Farmer Smith and they say, “Farmer Smith, we’re thinking of building a road through your valley here.  And we are prepared to offer you $15,000 for this option to build this road from Point A to Point B, which is on your land.  And we would like fifteen years to exercise this option, within the next fifteen years.  If at the end of the fifteen years we don’t exercise the option, you keep the money.  Well, in any event, you keep the money.  Or we will now negotiate a price.  If we exercise the option, we will pay you X”.  And either he agrees or he doesn’t.  It’s a very simple concept.  So the problem of the hold out, that really is not a significant problem.

But even beyond that, what is more likely, Farmer Smith, not only he will not say, “Get out.  Get off my land”, more likely the posture of Farmer Smith will be, “Say, we understand you’re planning to build a road down this way. That’s interesting.  Say, I’ll you what I’m prepared to do Mr. Road Company.  If you build the road through my valley, I’ll tell you what I’ll do.  I’ll give you the land at a zero fee.  Or you can have it for $10/linear mile through my fifty miles”.  Or $100 or $1000.  It doesn’t matter.

But might Farmer Smith do this?  What’s in it for him?  This may be an undeveloped area for one thing and he’s a farmer.  He can get his tomatoes, instead of going over this bumpy road, he can get his tomatoes to the market faster and cheaper.  He is already envisioning, for example, with the superhighway going through here, he’s already got plans for a big hotel, service stations.  ‘Cause he says, “I’ll give you the land free, but I have exclusive right for all facilities along the roadway”.  And they can negotiate a contract.  The road company says, “Yes, if you will build them according to certain standards.  This is acceptable to us, but we want the highest quality service for our customers”.

Alright. Might they agree upon this in some way and have a mutually profitable relationship?  Yes.  That is more likely what will happen.  Farmer Smith is more likely, in the real world, to be saying, “Hey, if you come through our valley, we can really give you an attractive offer”.  Instead of the reverse, “Get out”.  Am I right?  Because this will bring wealth and improvements and many advantages to the community.

On the other hand, if he says, “I don’t want no roads”, fine.  So the very problem that everyone worries about isn’t a problem at all.  In no case is it a problem.  Even if he doesn’t sell, it’s still not a problem.  It’s his land.

And you can generalize that.  The hospital doesn’t have to be on this corner.  Put it up the street.  It doesn’t make that much difference.  Ditto the school.  It doesn’t have to be this piece of land.  If they would spend more time worrying about not where is the school going to be, on what piece of land, but what is the function of the school and what is education and how do you define education and you do you achieve it, then maybe they’d have something.  What if the school is in the so-called right place geographically, but the school destroys the children who attend it?  Then what have you accomplished?  Well, at least the school got put in the right geographical area, even though all the kids are destroyed by it.

Let’s go on to another subject – traffic safety.  Is the state successful in its attempt to achieve traffic safety?  As you know, the state spends millions of dollars on traffic safety.  What are the results?  Forty, fifty thousand people are killed each year on our unsafe highways.  Alright, a question.  What is the principal cause of traffic accidents?  The nut behind the wheel.  Alright, we’ll make it non-rhetorical.  Anybody else?  I heard drunk drivers.  Overcrowding.  Incompetence of what?  The driver.  Anyone else?  Unsafe roads.  Anyone else?  Unsafe machinery.  Inclement weather.

I’ll give you three principal causes of traffic accidents.  The number one cause of all traffic accidents is an answer other than the ones you have given.  Anyone else?  Speeding drivers.  That’s a myth, incidentally.  It’s not so much fast driving that is the cause of accidents.  That’s a total myth.  It could be a contributory factor but it’s not a principal factor in accidents; not speed.  The principal cause of traffic accidents is the fact that the roads are not privately run for a profit.

Now do you think this would be the answer you might get from the National Safety Council or the Department of Transportation or some other boondoggle bureaucracy?  You think that would be the answer you would get?  No.  Never would that be the answer.  I would say a second cause, the first one really is all-inclusive, but other contributory causes; a second would be, not the second, but a second, would be incompetent road engineering.  A third would be incompetent drivers.

This time, for the sake of variety, I will present you with a solution before I expand upon the problem.  Other than yourself, who has the greatest to lose when you crash your automobile or someone crashes it for you?  Exactly.  The automobile insurance company.  It does not make their day when they have to write out a check for, let’s say, $75,000 to pay damages due to your accident.  They would rather not pay you the $75,000.   And, ladies and gentlemen, who else would rather that they not pay out the $75,000?  You.  Am I right?  I mean if you’re in a car and there are $75,000 damages, some of that could be due to damage to you.  Am I right?  Or $100,000.  Or $175,000.  In other words, you don’t want to sustain an automobile accident because you don’t want to sustain the damages and the destruction that could likely follow to both you and the car; hopefully just the car, but that could also include you.

Is it profitable, then, for the insurance company to see that you do not crash?  Yes.  Is it profitable for you to see that you do not crash?  Again, yes.  The very best and most efficient way in which the insurance company can take a constructive action is to see that you do not crash.  And the way they do this, well the best place to do is, is if the insurance company is also a proprietor of the road, or they have a subsidiary company that builds roads.  Either the insurance company can design and build the road or they can have a subsidiary company whose job it is to do the same.  Then if you crash on their road, they will sustain a double loss which is what?  One, they will have to pay off the claims for the damages due to your accident.  Two, it’s bad for business when the word gets around that perhaps this road is not safe.

In a right republic, there would even be competition among the various road companies on the subject of which road system is the safest.  Which road has the fewest accidents?  For example, if you, let’s say, had to choose between one of two roads from, let’s say, Los Angeles to Boston, how many of you would prefer to travel on the road on which there has never been a serious accident, even if the safer road costs, let’s say, 10% more to use?  How many of you would rather travel on the safer road even if it costs, say, 10% more?  Alright.  How many of you would prefer to save the 10% and travel on the less safe road?  How many aren’t sure?  Have to think about it.  How many of you wouldn’t spend much time thinking about it if the fee, let’s say, from LA to Boston, the total fee for usage was , let’s say, $40?  Or would you want to save the four bucks and go the less safe road?

The profit-seeking road company then has a proprietary interest in the safety and the wellbeing of their customers.  In the long run, I think that higher technology will continue to minimize the number of accidents.  For example, let’s say, if you build a road in which the road drives the automobile, instead of the automobile driving upon the road, can you see any advantages to this concept?  Sure.  If the road drives the automobile, let’s say you drive on an on-ramp onto a high speed road that’s moving along at a high speed, and your automobile is fastened to the road securely, secure to the road, whipping you along at a high speed, could you decide to take a nap, even though you’re the driver?  Sure.  Even drink a quart of whiskey, if one so desired, or two?  And then, maybe you’re heading for St. Louis.  At St. Louis, you take the off-ramp and you drive off and you’re under your own control then.  Is this technologically impossible to do this?  No, it’s just a question of the technology.  There has been much thinking on the subject anyhow.

Furthermore, as technology advances, there will be an increasingly larger number of flying ships, dirigible airships.  Dirigibles have never been fully developed.  They got a lot of publicity, you know, with the catastrophes that occurred to the hydrogen filled dirigibles.  You know, the Hindenburg and all these that…and spectacular blowups and so forth.  I see no reason why dirigible technology cannot be expanded upon.  You can have all kinds of sophisticated anti-collision devices, other means of rapid transit technology.  And my prediction is that the roads, certainly within capitalism, will gradually diminish in their significance.  One of the disadvantages of a road is it can only be used on one plane.  I mean, you have all these vehicles moving around in one plane, there is a greater probability they will collide than if you had multi-plane levels.  Yes?

What about this incompetent road engineering where you find the roads are the least useful when you most want to use them.  For example, have any of you ever tried to get from downtown Los Angeles, let’s say at 5 o’clock in the afternoon, to, say, Santa Ana or right here?  Have you ever tried this?  Was it smooth sailing all the way?  Smooth sailing?!  Good grief.  Not only is it not smooth sailing, it is so crowded, it doesn’t matter, it could be 4 o’clock, 5 o’clock, it doesn’t make any difference, you have to wait in line to get on the damn road.  Am I exaggerating?

And then for what when you finally get there, when you work your way there?  You have what?  It’s a solid parking lot from downtown Los Angeles to Santa Anna, practically.  That’s called a traffic jam or the world’s longest parking lot.  And, incidentally, I will define a traffic jam as a collision between two things: socialism and capitalism.  You see, it goes like this.  The socialists design and build the roads.  Therefore, they’re inadequate.  The capitalists design and build the automobiles.  Therefore, they are adequate and in great abundance.  What’s the problem?  It’s obvious.  We have a bountiful number of automobiles and the roads are inadequate.  Hence, a traffic jam.

If you reverse it, and you have private enterprise handling all the roads, you have tremendously high quality roads but hardly any automobiles to go around.  Hence, no traffic jam.  Well, for example, socialists build the automobiles in China.  Where are the traffic jams?  They build the roads, too, but they build both.  So there’s no traffic jam.

Ladies and gentlemen, if you have a rationally designed road system, you design it in such a way that you can handle the daily peak loads.  The system is designed for the peak loads.  What if the telephone company designed its system to handle telephone traffic the same way the bureaucrats design the roads to handle the automobile traffic?  You couldn’t get a phone call.  Try to make a phone call at 10 o’clock in the morning or 3 o’clock in the afternoon during the peak usage.  All you’d get would be a busy signal.  My experience is even the phone company does a pretty good job of even handling the super peak traffic on certain national holidays, even peaks beyond the normal daily load.  I won’t say you never get a busy signal but it seldom ever happens to me.  And then it goes through fairly soon after that.

I could spend a whole lecture just on road failure, but I won’t waste your time with that.  But you could…tremendous failure in just one thing alone, this incredibly insane, primitive, asinine sign technology, especially on the major tax ways.  That is total confusion and ambiguity and stupidity.  If I had the time, I see some of you nodding.  You recognize this.  How many have noticed this?  I mean, it is unbelievable.

Just take, for example, San Diego tax way.  Does this tax way only go to San Diego?  It goes to Santa Monica.  And there are signs that say Santa Monica but there is also a Santa Monica tax way which adds to the confusion.  I could go on and on with this.  And even if you’re a regular user of the road, have you ever had the experience where you’re trying to get to a junction, to some tax way junction, and you’re trying to figure out what lane you’re supposed to be in from the signs?  And you’re driving along, you know, and you’re, “Well, let’s see.  I think it’s this lane.  No, no, it’s this lane.  No, I was right before.  No.”.

And then maybe you slow down a little bit and you hesitate and that’s what causes the domino effect, chain reaction, especially when there is a lot of traffic, that somebody hesitates or they slow down.  Oh, I got to get…nope, nope, it’s the other lane.  This is largely, though not exclusively, due to the primitive sign technology and the design.

And then there’s all kinds of things that lead to confusion.  There’s no standardization, for example, as to access, egress and ingress, to the tax way.  For example, maybe you’re driving, let’s say, in Los Angeles.  You’re going down maybe Florence Avenue toward the Harbor tax way.  You’re going east.  And when you get there, in order to go north, maybe you go under, wrap around and go up this way.  Next street over, maybe it’s Slossen, or some other street, you’re going to get onto the same tax way, you don’t go that way.  You go under and you turn left.  The next intersection over, another one, you go up and over some other way.  There’s no standardization which leads to confusion and the wrong way driver.

And then when they have the idiot, wrong way driver sign.  Have you seen that one?  Here, maybe they got a road going on to the tax way, another one coming off; right next to each other, separated by a little narrow curb.  And they got right in the middle this a red sign – Wrong Way.  So I’m driving on, you know?  I see this sign – Wrong Way!  Wrong Way!  I’m going the wrong way.  No, I’m going the right way.  No, I’m going the wrong way.  Do you notice how you can always read the Wrong Way sign, whether you’re going the right way or the wrong way?  Doesn’t this strike you as being a little stupid?  Because if I can see it says “Wrong Way”, what does that tell me?  I’m going the wrong way.  You know, they have it just slightly angled a little bit in the direction of the wrong way.  What an absurdity.

And it doesn’t have to be some lunatic or drunk going up the wrong way.  This happened to me once in the San Fernando Valley at 3 o’clock in the afternoon.  I’m driving up there.  I had been up this same entrance probably fifty times.  Suddenly, the first thing I notice, the first I even realized I was going the wrong way, I didn’t realize it until I noticed that the curve I was going on was opposite of what it should be.  I was curving to the left and I should be always curving to the right when you go on there.  I noticed a big arrow coming at me.  I said, to use a popular expression, “You got to be kidding.  I’m going the wrong way.  This can’t happen to me”.

So I quickly stopped the forward motion of my automobile, slammed it into reverse, quickly started the car going in reverse as quickly as possible.  Why did I do this?  Well, because I was going around a curve.  And the other guy coming around the curve the other way may not be expecting me.  And I want to get the car going in the right direction, even if it’s backwards, as quickly as possible.  It’s what I did.  When these people looked at me, who were coming the right way, I smiled.  Of course, I got that look.  Frowns and curses.  What could I say?  Anyhow.

Don’t you think that we have the technology to obviate this?  Either you got some drunk up there or some lunatic who’s some misanthropic fellow who hates the world and himself obviously, first and foremost.  So he’s going to go out in style.  He’s going to kill a dozen people going a hundred miles an hour the wrong way.  Or some drunk.  Or somebody who just, because of the incompetence of the design, gets mixed up there innocently, going the wrong way.

I was driving up Interstate 5 once and I looked ahead and I saw some guy driving very fast, flashing his high beams up and down, like this.  And it looked to me like he was on the wrong side of the road.  I thought no.  I was in the left lane doing about 75 or so.  This was when they had the 65 mile an hour speed limit.  I was only ten miles over the speed limit at 75, or so, between 75 but less than 80.  But I was in the fast lane though.

And I look again.  I said, “That guy looks like he’s in my lane coming this way.  No, that can’t be”.  But the lights are going up and down like this.  And I look again.  My God, that guy is in my lane coming my way.  I say, “I’m getting out of here”.  I didn’t know what to do though because the guy might be…you know the situation where you’re walking up the sidewalk and the other guy…and you do this kind of…you don’t want to do this when the other guy’s doing 80 and you’re doing 80 and going on a collision course.  So, anyhow, I did the best thing.  I got over to the right side and went as slow as I could.  So at least if he hit me, I wanted to go as slowly as possible when he hits but still have enough speed to do some maneuvering and avoid him or something.  But anyhow.

And sure enough, this guy came straight as an arrow right down the center.  I don’t think he was drunk or stoned or anything.  He was just going right down the middle of the lane.  I figured at least 90 miles an hour, flashing his lights up and down.  The only thing I can think of, is this guy realized he was on the wrong side of the road and was going as fast as he can to get the hell out of there, like the guy that’s about to run out of gas.  So he’s speeding up before he runs out, which, of course, as you know, diminishes the efficiency of consumption.  So you’re going to run out sooner.  In other words, you’re trying to get there before the station closes.

Well, don’t you think that they have a way to prevent this wrong way?  Even if they use this primitive technology that greets you in the parking lot, you know: “Don’t go the wrong way.  Severe tire damage”.  I mean, wouldn’t it be better for a guy to have four flat tires than going 70 miles an hour the wrong way?  And he’s going to have a hell of a time going 70 miles an hour with four flat tires.

You can, of course, if you have a private road system, you can have a proprietary licensing agency.  What a farce this stupidity is with a driver’s license.  I mean this thing is insane, the stupidity of one of these things.  What does that prove?  Does it prove you’re a competent driver?  It doesn’t prove anything.  The most it can prove is you passed this idiot test that they give.  What does it take to do that?  If you don’t know the rules of the game that they’re playing, read their little book, which I never read, but I managed at least to answer enough of their idiot questions that I can pass it.  It doesn’t prove anything.

I remember once my license expired for well over a year.  And after I was stopped by two patrolmen, but talked my way out of the ticket, of course, and they didn’t notice that it was expired for over a year and a half,  I decided, well, you know, I won’t be that lucky next time.

So I went down to get the license renewed.  Oh you could hear the, “Hey, Charlie. Here’s a guy with his license expired over a year ago”.  I could hear all of this, as if it was some big deal, you know?  And then I found out there’s a penalty for this.  Do you know what it is, if your license is expired for more than a year, do you know what it is?  You have to take not only the written test, but you’ve got to take the driving test.  That was about three years ago, right here in Santa Anna.  Here I am.  I’ve been driving since I was 16.  The guy says, “Get in the car.  Start the car”.  So I start the car.  “Move forward”.  I do all these things.  “Stop”.  “Turn right”.  “Park”.  I did all these things.  I got my license.  Here it is.  I looked at this guy, “Are you serious?  I’ve been driving since I’m 16”.

“Start the car”.

Okay.  Well, you can have a profit-seeking company do this, determine who’s competent and who isn’t.  Will the road company want to limit the usage of their facility to competent drivers?  Answer: yes.  Why do they want lunatics, screwballs and incompetent jerks on their highway because they can cause accidents and it is bad for business.  And so, they exclude all the incompetent drivers for whatever the reason is.  It could be because they’re perpetual alcoholics or they can’t see, through perhaps no fault of their own, whatever the reason is.  You do it on a proprietary basis.  It’s as simple as that.

I won’t take the time to discuss it now, but I mean the whole stupidity, for example, of giving traffic citations.  The traffic citation, ladies and gentlemen, is nothing more than another tax.  The excuse, oh this is to protect the safety of the drivers, is total baloney.  It is nothing more than another form of revenue collection at your expense.  And you cannot even assume that a fellow who has a lot of traffic citations is necessarily an unsafe driver.  That is a fall.  Some of the most unsafe drivers, who have caused the greatest number of accidents, may have never had a traffic citation in their entire life.  Much of it has to do with exposure.  A man, for example, who puts four thousand miles a year on his car has less exposure than a salesman, let’s say, who puts forty thousand miles on a car each year.  The guy who drives forty thousand miles is more likely to get a citation if, for no other reason, he’s got more exposure.  You can’t drive up the street without violating some law.

And then, for example, we do have some roads, even the worst bureaucratic roads, are designed, for example, for safer speeds than 55 miles an hour.  The major stupidity of this, that is an attack upon one of your scarcest resources, time.  Let me ask you something.  Is there anyone in this room – how many of you have driven from LA up Interstate 5 to the San Francisco Bay area or San Jose?  How many have taken this road at some time?  Alright, the majority of you.  Alright, let me ask you this question.  Since they’ve had the 55 mile an hour speed limit, how many of you have driven no faster than 55 miles an hour on Interstate 5?  One person.  Now be honest.  I’m not going to turn you in.  How many have kept it at 55 and no faster?  That’s on the assumption – you have?  Pulling a trailer.  That might be a reason to do it because there is a greater risk when you do pull a trailer.  You should go slower.  Alright.

Let’s make the question without pulling a trailer and assuming that your automobile will go faster than 55 miles an hour.  Did you go that speed without a trailer, if you’ve gone?  No.  I cannot imagine myself going 55 miles an hour on Interstate 5.   I mean, I drive along there when I take that road sometimes on the way to give a lecture maybe in the San Jose area.  I drive 70 or so, 75 or so, 80 once in a while.  Of course, I got one eye on the road, one eye looking for the highwayman.  For me, it’s safer.  When I’m doing 75 or 80, I’m totally alert.  That’s when I’m the most alert and therefore the best driver.  I couldn’t stay awake at 55.  And if I’m falling asleep, I’m not a safe driver.  Alright.

How about another subject?  Why don’t we have high quality private enterprise rapid transit systems in, let’s say, the southern California area?  In other words, if private enterprise is so great, how come we don’t have a high quality, private enterprise rapid transit system in Orange County?  LA County?  How many of you are aware of the fact that, at the turn of the century, we had in southern California the world’s largest and fastest rapid transit system?  How many know about this?  And what was it called?  They called it locally the old red car.  It was the Pacific Electric Company.  How many of you remember this?  When I was in my kidhood days, it was pretty much phasing out but I remember it.  And you could go, for example, from downtown Los Angeles to Santa Monica.  You could go out to Long Beach, Playa del Ray, Huntington Beach.

It went to Santa Anna.  It went out through Pasadena.  It went out to the Mount Lowe. You could take the tramway up to the old Mount Lowe Hotel.  You could rent the red car for the weekend and go on a family picnic.  And generally, they would even include the motorman and the conductor as a guest at the picnic.  You could go from downtown Los Angeles to Santa Monica in thirty minutes for a dime.

Well, today, of course, we don’t have the Pacific Electric anymore.  Now we got, in LA, the RTD.  The RTD.  Stands for Retarded, the Retarded Transit District.  RTD.  I think you’re supposed to call it Rapid Transit but I fail to see the rapidity of it.  And I’ve never done this, and God I hope I never have to take the RTD from downtown LA to Santa Monica, or any other place, but I have talked to people in my classes who have done this.  You can’t do it in thirty minutes and it’s a lot more than a dime.  I had someone tell me it took an hour and a half.  Someone else told me they went from Glendale to Santa Monica on the RTD. I think it took like two hours, two and a half hours or something.  Now that’s interesting.

Then I might further point out the Pacific Electric ran relatively quiet, especially for the time, vehicles, relatively pollution free because they operated by electric motors.  And although electric motor pollution is far from zero, the pollution of an electric motor is nominal compared to what a combustion engine will put out, even an efficient one.  Am I right?  Please note three-quarters of a century ago, private enterprise had a better, faster and cheaper rapid transit system than the bureaucrats have three-quarters of a century later.  And they have all the advantage of the technology since then.  Isn’t that interesting?  Yeah.

Let’s discuss another subject.  Remember the assumption is in this lecture, one of the assumptions is in the Lectures 9, 10, 11, and 12 on the right republic, is that we already have freedom.  And so the question is, if you have freedom, then how do you maintain it in the fourth step of this program, maintenance?  Is that a product worth maintaining?  You bet.  If you can’t maintain it, you have tyranny and extinction following shortly thereafter.  And so, how do you maintain it?  Which means, to maintain it, you’ve got to find, always, moral alternatives to the state which means moral alternatives to coercion.  How can you solve a problem without the gun?

For example, what if, without any warning, your next door neighbor suddenly starts raising pigs.  Pigs that squeal.  Pigs that demonstrate their rather rank behavior by producing a stench which is, at best, unbearable.  How many know this from experience?  Why, when I was on my uncle’s farm, back in ’49, 1949, that was the one thing I was asked to do that I absolutely balked and refused to do.  The expression was not at the time, but I mean that was like, “You got to be kidding”.  I couldn’t believe it – the stench.  I was asked to shovel out this pig manure.  Unbelievable. Anyhow.  How many have experienced this?  I’m not exaggerating.  It’s unbelievable.  I mean, in comparison, cow manure smells like rose juice or something.

Alright.  Who is willing to say that this unexpected turn of events, your next door neighbor starts raising pigs, who’s willing to say if this really happened this would not exactly make your day?  How many of you?  Oh boy.  Alright.  How does the state handle this problem?  The gun.  They’re called coercive zoning regulations.

Well, other problems might arise.  What if your next door neighbor suddenly starts digging for oil on his land, but your land is contiguous to his land.  It’s right over the fence there.  And he puts up an oil derrick: noisy, unsightly.  It could be smelly.  Would this make your day?

What if your next door neighbor puts up a glue factory on his land and your land is contiguous to his?

What if your neighbor has the late shift that he works?  He comes home at 3 A.M. in the morning with all the windows open.  He just got his new stereo system, 100 watt Macintosh amplifiers, 48 inch woofers, super high tweeters, $500 cartridge, etcetera, etcetera.  And he’s an aficionado of Hawaiian steel guitar music.  Or even a little hard rock now and then.  But mostly Hawaiian steel guitar music.  And he’s going out 100 watts per channel.  Who’s willing to say this would not exactly make your day if you’re the next door neighbor?  You’ve got to be kidding.  I hope I haven’t insulted any of the lovers of Hawaiian steel guitar music but anyhow.  It’s not one of my favorites.  There’s probably worse though.

How do you deal with this?  What should you do?  Are you under attack?  Are you being coerced by any of this?  What if your neighbor starts growing weeds right in the front yard? Weeds!  What is a weed?  You know what a weed is?  As F.A. Harper correctly says, “A weed is nothing more than a misplaced plant”.  Weed is a relative concept, isn’t it?   What may be weeds to one person could be flowers to another.  Is this true?  Alright.

What about the guy, he paints his house heliotrope with orange polka-dots.  Is that interference with your property?  Have you been attacked?  Heliotrope with orange polka-dots?  Who’s willing to say, if his next door neighbor actually did this, that that would not actually make your day either?  And you’d probably say, “I don’t know.  Are you cracked”?  In fact, might you even think your neighbor might even be cracked if suddenly this happened?  But he likes it.  He thinks it’s great.  He thinks that your aesthetic appreciation for what he’s done is lacking.  And you think he’s cracked.  What do you do?

Alright, the generic I call for this, the dirty pig problem.  That’s the generic.  Or any of these are what I call dirty pig problems.  Okay, how can we handle any of these on the assumption that the solution must be moral?  Let’s look at a few alternatives.  For example, the guy with the Hawaiian steel guitar music, could you call him up and say, “Hey Charlie, I’m really having trouble.  I sure like that steel guitar music, but it’s so good, it keeps me awake. Could you turn it down a shade or two”?  Could Charlie actually comply with your request and actually turn it down?  Could this happen?  Yes.  Could this be a solution?  Yes.  It could be.  Not the solution but it could be a solution.  Yes?  Yeah.

Or you might call Charlie up and maybe he’s listening to Vivaldi’s Four Seasons, a little baroque music.  And so, you say, “Hey Charlie.  Could you turn that up a little bit?  I’m missing the main part of the second movement”?   You see, you might not dislike it.  You might actually like what’s being played.

Or another problem, like screaming children or a motorcycle goes by without a muffler.  Is that annoying to everyone?  Some yes.  Some no.  A motorcycle enthusiast might say, “Hey, that’s great”.  Of course, all people who remove their mufflers are immediately jerks, without taking the time to explain why.  That’s done to get attention unless you’re maybe some racing enthusiast and you think you can get more speed out of it.  But I’m saying the guy that…essentially what that’s done, or noisy mufflers, is for zero types, intellectual lightweights and total jerks.  That’s a way to get attention.  Vrroommm, vrrooom, vrrooom.  You are confronted with a total zero.  The only way he can get attention.  Ditto auto, you know.

Same with music.  If you can’t play good, play loud.  Alright.  I know that’s offensive to some.  I could give a lecture on that: if you can’t play good, play loud.  But I won’t.  Ask me sometime though, if you’re interested.  Loudness is especially destructive when it destroys the eardrum.  When I went by Whiskey A Go-Go, it was hurting my ears and I was on the sidewalk.  What it was like to those inside, one can only imagine and hazard a guess.  But it must be literally deafening.  You know they do find that young people are going in for their college physical exams and they commonly find that they have a hearing capability of somebody who is 65 because of listening to all the cacophonous noise.  That’s totally insane because the ear is one of the principal inputs to find out what the hell is going on.  And it is difficult to find out as it is without adding impediments.

Technology comes to the rescue.  One of the best ones is called soundproofing.  And it works two ways.  Not only does it keep this unwanted sound from reaching me.  It never gets out of the other guy’s house to begin with.  But I have it too and it won’t get in even if it does get out of his house.  It can’t get into my house.

Well, what about in the hot summer when you have to keep the windows open?  Well, you know the answer.  It’s called air conditioning.  And in total capitalism, you wouldn’t think of buying a house that doesn’t have high quality soundproofing, soundproof windows, air-conditioning, dust/pollen filtering systems, all built into the house.  The cost is nominal when it is done in this way.  And you would no more think of buying a house that doesn’t have air conditioning, soundproofing, etcetera, than you would think today of buying a house that doesn’t have an indoor toilet.

As a matter of fact, I gave this illustration probably before, I doubt that any of you would even think of buying a new house that doesn’t have at least two toilets.  Am I right?  In fact, that’s even a status symbol, the number of people you can seat simultaneously.  Well, we seat three.  Oh really?  We seat four.  I’m not joking.  That’s partly status.  Isn’t it?  There’s one old fellow.  He didn’t have one of these in his house, an indoor toilet.  The old timer said, “Why would anybody want to do that in their house”?  Anyhow.  That’s a true story.  He had an outhouse.  That should be done out in the backyard.  Maybe he had a good point.  I don’t know.  If you live in Kansas in the winter, I suppose….alright.

The soundproofing is a very fine….there are other ways to handle this.  There are, for example, apartment houses where they cater to people that don’t make a lot of noise.  You can’t have children who can make noise.  We don’t allow pets.  Etcetera.  And they’re catering to peace and quiet.  In other words, there is a market demand for what?  Peace and quiet.  Yes?  Alright, if there is a demand for this, someone will come along seeking profit and meet the demand.  Isn’t that a solution?  It could be residential.  It could be apartments.  Or what have you.

What about the dirty pig problem itself?  Alright.  Assume there are no zoning laws.  What would prevent, in a moral society, what would prevent someone from going into commercial pig production, let’s say, in Beverly Hills?  Would this be economically feasible?  Take some little lot in Beverly Hills, I don’t what real estate….it’s easy to call up somebody locally and find out in Beverly Hills, but let’s say he got some little lot that’s fifty feet by a hundred feet.  And they want $75,000 for it.  Just a lot.  Or $100,000.  Or $150,000.  Is this conceivable?  Or more.  If it’s on the corner of Wilshire Boulevard and Beverly Drive, it’s more than.  You’re talking about millions probably for a little dinky piece of land.  Am I right?  It would not be economically feasible to go into the production of pigs in Beverly Hills, would it?

So, let’s say, maybe it’s forty years ago.  Real estate was expensive in Beverly Hills forty years ago.  But let’s say, instead of paying then, let’s say, $50,000 for a lot in Beverly Hills to raise pigs, the guy goes out to some place, Anaheim, and forty years ago, whoever heard of Anaheim?  Nobody.  Well, practically nobody.  If you’re from Anaheim, I hope you’re not insulted by this.  And you go out to Anaheim.  And instead of $50,000, which buys a little dinky lot in Beverly Hills, you buy fifty acres or a hundred acres, or whatever is, and you start raising pigs.  And the pigs will do just as well in Anaheim.  It’s all the same to the pig.  The pig doesn’t know the difference between Anaheim or Beverly Hills.  Isn’t that the rational thing to do?

In the meantime, maybe Anaheim is developing.  And, as I say, at this time, the only time I can even remember, I grew up in the LA area, but in my kidhood days, this was pre-Disneyland days, the only reference I can even remember to Anaheim at all was they used to preempt one of my favorite radio programs, The Great Gildersleeve. Do any of you remember that one?  They would preempt The Great Gildersleeve on KFI.  And Floyd Young, out here in Pomona, would bring us the fruit frost warnings, remember?  And that’s where they would get this, “Anaheim 30°, dew point what have you, Azusa, something else, Cucamonga,…”.  And they would go through all these fruit areas giving the fruit frost warnings.  That’s where one of Jack Benny’s script writers picked this gag up: Anaheim, Azusa and Cucamonga.  I mean these are real places but nobody knew that unless you lived there.  It was Walt Disney that put Anaheim on the map.

Anyhow, so, in any event, of course, Anaheim starts expanding.  And shopping centers are going in and tracks are going in around this farm, but this farmer is raising pigs.  And along the way, someone says, “Well, we’ll give you $75,000 for this land”.

“No, I aint selling”.  He only paid $50,000.

Then the population continues to grow.  And somebody comes up, “Say, we’re thinking of building a shopping center.  Would you be interested in $150,000”?

No, he wouldn’t sell.

Later, he’s offered a quarter of a million for this land, which he paid $50, 000 for.  “A quarter of a million you say?  Well, I don’t know.  I like it here.  You know, Disneyland is right across the street and I go over there.  I try to get there once a week.  I tell you what I’ll do.  You give me another $50,000.  $300,000”.

“Sold”.

So he takes the $300,000, takes out $50,000, goes out to Imperial Valley, buys the same amount of acreage for $50,000 and starts raising pigs.  And he puts the quarter of a million dollars in the bank.  Of course, it’s a right republic.  There’s no tax on it.  And this is how the land will be generally allocated for the most efficient use.  In the real world, long before this, he would have sold.  He might have been happy with a hundred percent return on the land.  You know, not too bad.

But even beyond this, there are other things that can solve the problem.  Here’s a bit of technology.  It’s called profit in the round.  Somebody has developed what’s called the BS&B Bacon Bin.  It takes the work out of hog raising while putting in extra profits.  And they have a completely self-contained pig production system with automatic feeding, automatic waste control, air-conditioning, self-contained.  The squealing cannot be heard.  The smell cannot be smelled, or whatever you do with it.  And that does much to solve the problem if you are worried about it.

There are still other solutions.  The best one is contract.  I’ll give you a typical contract of how you can deal with this problem.  This is an actual covenant, protective covenant, for an area in Los Angeles.  I’ll read this to you.  This is for a section in LA called Hancock Park.  Let me read some.  This is written in legalese, which is a legal language which is written in such a way, it’s designed so nobody can really understand what it means.  Anyhow, I’ll read the terms of this contract:

“This conveyance is made upon and subject to the following conditions subsequent, all of which shall also be treated and construed as covenants running with the land, all of which conditions and codes the grantee assumes and agrees to perform and abide by and expressly makes binding upon his heirs, [Not transcribed] successors and assigns.  Namely [and this is how the land will be used.  This is by contract] said lot shall not be used or shall any part thereof be used for the purpose of drilling thereon for or producing there from oil, gas or any other mineral substance.  [Okay.  That takes cares of the next door oil derrick which you don’t want likely either.  You might.  If you have oil derricks on your land, you don’t care about the other guy either.  But if they’re residents, probably yes, you do care].  Or for building or operating or maintaining thereon any trade or business establishment or any establishment for public amusement, a manufacturing establishment [That takes care of the glue factory] or any billboards or use for any other purpose than private residence purposes. And it is provided that the erection or maintenance thereon of a hotel, boarding house, lodging house, an apartment house, a flat building [In other words, you have to have two-story houses here], duplex or double house, a sanatorium or a hospital shall constitute a violation of this condition”.

Alright, what this says, freely translated is this.  Look buster, if you want to buy this land, then you agree to all of these conditions.  Take it or leave it, but the contract goes with the land.  If you don’t want it, then we’ll sell it to somebody who’s willing to agree to these terms.

And then, it has one, two, three, and a third page explaining how the land will be used.  In other words, ladies and gentlemen, you are not the only person who would like to have a residence where there is not a glue factory or a nut house or a pig sty or any of these things next door, if you have a residence, especially in the city.  Now, in the country, you are probably more tolerant.  And one reason, incidentally,  that land will sell for less in the country, one of the reasons you get it for less than in, say, Beverly Hills or the city, you know why?  Because a lot of the land is undeveloped, there is less uncertainty as to how it will be utilized.  And because there is less certainty as to how it will be utilized, let’s say, that there is in Beverly Hills, the land will sell for less.  There’s less demand.  Or even without any kind of even building codes or covenants, there is a pretty good probability of how the land will be used, say, in Beverly Hills, isn’t there?  It will be high quality commercial establishments ore residences or what have you.  Alright.

Maybe we’ll just take on one more problem and that will conclude tonight’s lecture.  I’ll skip the subject of how do you protect property, like national forest and great timber stands, I’ll skip that.  And maybe we’ll come back to that in one of the workshop sessions.  I’ll just end with a brief discussion of what we call Grand Canyon problems.  For example, if there is no state, then who will own the Grand Canyon?  I’ll lead in on the answer to that question.  You realize, if there’s no state, either the Grand Canyon has no owner or it will be privately owned.  That will cover all possibilities.  The question is, well, how do you do know that some profiteering industrialist or manufacturer, how do you know that they’re not going to completely destroy the Grand Canyon, impair its beauty perpetually in the interest of profit?

Alright, what will protect the integrity of the natural beauty of the Grand Canyon?  How many of you have not yet visited the Grand Canyon, have not been to the Grand Canyon?  I strongly recommend that you rectify this omission.  The Grand Canyon is worth seeing.  It is one of the most magnificent scenic wonders on this planet.  I’ve taken many photographs of the Grand Canyon under all kinds of conditions, including even lightning storms.  And although I have some pretty impressive shots of the Grand Canyon, I have some experience as a photographer, I even taught courses on the subject of photography, motion picture photography and still photography, and yet, there is not one photograph I have of the Grand Canyon that begins to rival the magnitude and the grandeur of this unbelievably impressive scene.  Alright.

What do you think, if the goal is to maximize profits, what do you think would be the principal allocation of this resource of the Grand Canyon?  What do you think it would be allocated for principally?  In other words, what would be the means to maximizing profit?  What do you think?  What business?  Tourism.  There’s only one Grand Canyon.  Did the bureaucrats build it?  It’s no thanks to the state that we have the Grand Canyon. This was there long before the state.  Is this right?  Certainly.

Alright.  How would they optimize profits if it were privately owned?  First and foremost, maintain the integrity of this canyon and don’t destroy it because there’s no other place like it. And that’s how they would optimize their profits.  Among other things, of course, they would have high quality facilities.  How many of you have found the facilities at the Grand Canyon, hotels, etcetera, leave something to be desired?  I certainly have.  While they have private companies running these things, the state gives out contracts.  It’s not done on a proper basis.  And so, the way you would optimize profits?  You do it on a proprietary basis.  It doesn’t have to be a coercive, tax-supported system.  When you go to the Grand Canyon, you will be greeted with, first of all, a sign to the right which says “Your national park.  Help keep it clean”.

Oh, this is my national park.

And then they have the audacity, I am only three feet past this sign that says it’s my national park, and then they hit me with an admission fee.  How can you charge me admission to see my own land?  What does that tell me?  That’s called fraud.  It’s not mine or why do I have to pay admission to see it if it’s mine?  It’s not mine.

Alright, well, who should operate the Grand Canyon?  I have a number of candidates.  One would be Walter Knott.  Here’s a man that took a place that nobody ever heard of either called Buena Park and put it on the map, starting with a few berry stands.  And now Knott’s Berry Farm is one of the largest tourist attractions in the world.  Another candidate would be the late Walt Disney who took a field full of dirt clods and broken down orchard groves and turned it into, at least recently, if not still, into the world’s largest tourist attraction.

Now, if Walt Disney can do that with Anaheim, imagine what he could do with the Grand Canyon?   Bring these questions up, questions of how you get title to the Grand Canyon, you can bring it up in the workshop.  We’ll discuss it.  I think, for example, as a tourist attraction, you compare, let’s say, Disneyland as a private enterprise amusement park, compare that with any nonprofit or state operated amusement park, is there any comparison?  At Disneyland, for example, the place is immaculately clean.  A paper flutters to the ground and within a short time some fellow with a fancy uniform is over there with a broom and he’s pushing it into the little pan.  They have a high quality security there.  For example, the place is safe.  You don’t worry about getting mugged.  I won’t say that there’s never been any incidence of this at Disneyland. But on a relative basis, I would feel safer in Disneyland than any other place in Anaheim, I mean that; than any other place I can think of in all of Anaheim and the rest of Orange County for that matter.

Why are you safe there and you’re not confronted with muggers and pickpocket types in general and so forth?  Why?  Because Walt Disney and his successors have a proprietary interest in your safety.  Do they?  If, for no other reason, they cannot afford a reputation of, “Oh, Disneyland, you want to stay away from that place.  There’s all kinds of lunatics running around and muggers and pickpockets and bums and lunatics, kidnappers.  You stay away from that place”.  Can they afford such a reputation?  And so, the clown, Mickey Mouse that just passed you might be one of their security agents dressed up as Mickey Mouse but looking for any trouble makers, what have you.  For example, when some hippie type jerks went out there on, what do they call that island, Treasure Island, or one of their islands out there, remember they put up a Viet Cong flag and they were causing all kinds of problems.  They turned into a mob type.  And the Disney Company closed the park.  Gave everybody a raincheck except these jerks.  Kicked them out and closed the park because they figured the risk was too great.  It was in the interest of their customers.  And you can be certain these jerks did not have the permission of Mr. Disney to put up a Viet Cong flag and take down the American flag.  That is criminal behavior.

And so, I’ll end on this note.  I’ll end with this question.  Given your choice, on any given night of the week, how many of you would rather take a stroll from one end of Disneyland to the other versus a stroll from one end of Central Park to the other in the city of New York?  How many would rather take the stroll in Disneyland?  How many would rather take the stroll in Central Park?  Well, in Central Park, without my input, I’m sure you’re aware of the fact it could be your last stroll.  And you’d be lucky to get from one end to the other without getting either murdered or mugged or attacked.

And what’s the difference?  Very simple difference.  Disneyland is a profit-seeking company that has a proprietary interest in the safety of their customers.  The security at Central Park, what there is of it, is provided by the New York City police.  And how much proprietary interest do they have in your safety when you are walking in that park?  Zero.  And there’s the difference between success and failure.

Don’t get sick.  Next week I will discuss global defense and national defense.  I bid you good evening.


© Sustainable Civilization Institute 2010