Freedom isn't free, but the free market economy should be

By Courtney Howard

Posted by Courtney E. Howard

Just when I thought it was safe to come out of hiding and take in various media (newspapers, periodicals, television, blogs, etc.) following the recent election, I am reminded that I am bitter about the bailouts -- so much so, in fact, that I need someone to enlighten me.

This free market economy isn't free. Throughout my life, and for as long as I can remember, relatives, teachers, government officials, bosses, and others have extolled -- heralded, even -- the values and benefits of the free market economy. I have heard capitalism and the free market economy likened to Darwinism. To apply that comparison to the proposed bailouts of today: If a company, such as GM for example, isn't fit to survive (e.g., went on making large, gas-guzzling SUVs despite the price of oil and gas doubling and consumers driving less and trending toward compacts and hybrids), should not nature just take its course? Why should we sink in good money after bad to prolong the inevitable?

At the same time, Pentagon officials are urging the incoming president to reduce defense spending. Let me get this straight: We should not spend money on our security and defenses, but we should invest taxpayer money on golden parachutes, extravagant spa retreats, and bloated salaries for ineffectual executives "working" (I use the term loosely) at U.S. banks, automakers, and more. Heh?

I do not easily and callously part with my hard-earned money. As a result, I cannot sit idly by and watch the government act recklessly and without forethought with my money (and everyone else's). I wrote my representatives in Congress.

If you share, even the tiniest bit, in the outrage I feel, write your congressmen and congresswomen. It takes little time; simply visit https://writerep.house.gov/writerep/welcome.shtml. I did (and by that I mean: voiced my outrage), and I hope you are moved to do the same.

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The Mil & Aero Bloggers

John Keller is editor-in-chief of Military & Aerospace Electronics magazine, which provides extensive coverage and analysis of enabling electronic and optoelectronic technologies in military, space, and commercial aviation applications. A member of the Military & Aerospace Electronics staff since the magazine's founding in 1989, Mr. Keller took over as chief editor in 1995.

Ernesto Burden is the publisher of PennWell’s Aerospace & Defense Media Group, including Military & Aerospace Electronics, Avionics Intelligence and Avionics Europe.  He’s a father of four, a runner, and an avid digital media enthusiast with a deep background in the intersection of media publishing, digital technology, and social media. He can be reached at ernestob@pennwell.com and on Twitter @aero_ernesto.

Courtney E. Howard, as executive editor, enjoys writing about all things electronics and avionics in PennWell’s burgeoning Aerospace and Defense Group, which encompasses Military & Aerospace Electronics, Avionics Intelligence, the Avionics Europe conference, and much more. She’s also a self-proclaimed social-media maven, mil-aero nerd, and avid avionics geek. Connect with Courtney at Courtney@Pennwell.com, @coho on Twitter, and on LinkedIn.

Mil & Aero Magazine

December 2013
Volume 24, Issue 12
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