The Gross National Debt

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Legally required to fail

THIS ONE HAPPENED


Really. This actually happened. Last time I was there, the building was still there. Not open though. I went in the bar more than once when I was but a chirren so you know the bar was open in the 1970s.

The bar was in deep South Georgia. Call the owner Chaucer to protect him.

The building was long with doors on each side. The actual bar where beer was served ran down the middle.

One side was for people of one ethnic persuasion. The other side was for people of another ethnic persuasion. Chaucer served people equally, provided they stayed on "their" side of the bar. He was quick to tell you if you wanted to talk to someone on the other side, you took it outside.

The bar stayed open for years.

Chaucer said if he was forced to integrate, he'd close it.

The community there accepted the bar. It stayed open until Chaucer retired.

You, probably, would say integrate. Chaucer would close the bar. This would deprive the community of the local watering hole. That would make every person who regularly visited the bar mad, on both sides of the bar.

How is it fair? How is it fair to let him run the bar the way he wanted to?

One more item. The bar did close because someone complained. Rather than integrate, he closed. Then, the community got behind Chaucer and asked him to reopen, which he did. The bar was segregated and remained that way until he retired.

So far as I know, he is the only person to ever run a bar successfully in that town.

SOME POINTY QUESTIONS


You are gonna have to suspend your personal convictions a moment. Don't panic. I'm going to do the same just after this section.

Just for discussion, say the only way a bar can stay open there (make enough money) is by being segregated.

How would you handle this?

How do Chaucer's rights differ from the person who complained about the segregated bar?

Say everyone else on both sides of the bar wanted it that way. How do the rights of all of Chaucer's other customers differ from the person who complained?

Does the community have the right to have a bar?

If the community says it wants the bar and is willing to have the bar under Chaucer's requirements, should it be allowed to open?

SUSPENSION OF BELIEF


Let's just say I agree that a florist, photographer, bakery, tire shop, pharmacy, bar or pick the business of your choice is legally required to provide service to people the owner does not want to serve.

I do not agree with that, but work with me here.

A photog must take pictures of a same gender wedding.

A Jewish bakery must make an anti Semitic cake.

A pharmacist must sell "morning after" pills.

Pick something. The key point is the demand is a direct violation of the beliefs held by the business owner. Has to be legal to provide the service or product. Ideally, it should also be readily available at another business in town. Not a requirement. It is not a critical item. A good example of critical is insulin for a diabetic. Non critical is a requirement.

JUST THE FACTS MA'AMSTER


Stated: Forcing, as noted above, is legal.

Stated: This is the law of the land, as approved by legislative bodies and courts.

Stated: This is also approved by taxpayers. If the elected reps did it, then the masses agreed. If the courts do it, ehhhhh. Fine. Call that the law of the land too. I still say citizen referenda to amend Constitutions and Jury Nullification are powers vested in the plebes to reign in government.

Can we accept these three points, JUST for the sake of this discussion? Doesn't matter if you can or can't. You're gonna keep reading to hopefully find out what's on my mind.

Fourth point-

Stated: The business must abide by these requirements because this is ordered by taxpayers.

Any fines generated go in the government general fund.

A NOT SO FINE LINE


Approved is different than ordered. It has to be ordered. If the business does not comply, the business and owner can be fined; that means ordered. A business can be approved to sell beer, but does not have to sell beer. See the difference?

So you have now ordered this business owner to do what he does not want to do. You are good with that. (Work with me on this)

BELIEF CRAMPS


Lemme give you an example.

Ignatius runs a store. He sells wood glue.

The owner, Ignatuis, believes Elbonians should not be allowed to have wood glue.

Ignatius sells wood glue to everyone else without having belief cramps.

But, he is forced to sell wood glue to the town's only Elbonian, Phread because law.

Good enough. Now let's throw a capuchin into the mechanism.

SUCCESS ON WHOSE TERMS


Ignatiius HAD a very successful business. He made money. He paid taxes. He socked money back for retirement. He did not get rich, but made a reasonable profit. Everything he did was legal. Everything.

Except, except not selling wood glue to Phread.

As stated, not selling wood glue to Phread is against the law. The matter goes to court. Ignatius loses.

Now, Ignatius is forced to do something that violates his core beliefs.

Word gets out. They too believe Elbonians should not be allowed to have wood glue. They boycott Ignatius for following the law. His business dries up. Customers stay away in droves.

Ignatius is forced to close his formerly profitable business because no money.

LOOKING FOR ACCOUNTABILITY


Who is responsible?

He was doing fine. No one was complaining until he refused to fill one customer's order. Now, because he was forced to comply with the law, his business is closed because his customers were offended and left him.

Who is responsible?

Because this business owner did what the law required, society rebelled and shut him down.

It has happened before.

Social pressure nearly ruined Montgomery's bus system because Rosa Parks.

Boycotts work.

Northern Ireland is a good example of segregated shopping.

Businesses still close.

If you must have more proof, go get it. This point is as solid as adamantium.

SHUTTIN' ER DOWN


Social pressure closes businesses regularly. When customers go elsewhere, whatever the reason, businesses close. You've seen it happen in your community.

But my point goes right back to the law. If the formerly successful business complies with the law and customers object and leave, who is responsible?

In case you MISSED IT above.

HERE COMES THE MUMMY (wrapping this up. ARHARHAR!)


My thoughts? I say if the law is going to force a business to act a certain way and the customer base objects and leaves, then the law is responsible for keeping that business open and at the same profit level as before.

If I make decisions that cause my business to close, my fault. And ONE MORE TIME. This was both a BUSINESS DECISION and the law. This business was legally required under the law to allow Ted Cruz et all to use the premises. Cruz et al were specifically invited.

If the law forces a decision on my previously successful business and that forced decision causes my customers to leave, not my fault.

Taxpayers, who are at the root of the law, should be required to pick up the bill to keep the business afloat.

But no one else will agree with me on this.

A business owner should be allowed to run his operation as he sees fit.

Economic harm is empirical. It can be measured, quantified, stated, reported, examined, etc. The problem is sometimes the law forces economic harm for no good reason. That's just flat wrong.

And in one very real case, a community loses a business it wanted, a business that operated the way the community wanted.

2 comments:

  1. Regarding the NYC hotel - There is a very real difference between not making a profit and losing money.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Ben, I am leaving in a few minutes to go to the doctor's office. Since I totally agree with you on this, there must be something terribly,terribly wrong with me! OK. I admit it. I've had the appointment for two weeks. Nice job on this one!

    ReplyDelete