Wow Will, to get the Utopia you are after you would literally have to throw away everything that you own that uses some form of software, service, calibration…basically anything with a re-accuring cost associated with it. That means no computer, cell phone, utilities, automobile or house…among other things. That borders on communism.
Not my point at all. I used to write software and know that software vendors always hope to “hook” you so that they can sell you the “latest release” every year. I am still using Quickbooks 2005 and it works fine for me. Why should I pay some $200 every year to Quicken to “upgrade” something that already works perfectly well and is what I am use to. The last time I upgrade Quickbooks, it took me a week (wasted time) to re-learn what I already knew. And there was no new “functionality” that I cared for or that helped me better run my business.
Same with Homeguage. Good program, and I am not knocking it. but why should I pay every year to upgrade what is already working perfectly fine. Same with Windows XP and Word and Excel PowerPoint and all the other software I use.
If I pay for something, I expect it to work. If I find out that there is some new, needed and productive software, I will buy it. But don’t force me to do so if I do not want to.
If it works, there is no reason to fix it. If something better comes along, I will evaluate it, according to my needs, and buy it if it helps.
Thing cell phones. I use mine for phone calls, not web access, e-mail, text or GPS. But, it is practically impossible to by a cell phone that is JUST a cell phone. Why should I pay 50% more for functionality I never use?
Not that I am against this, but what about the same government(s) that passed manidatory home inspections…should we throw that out also? Just like Peter stated there are bad home inspectors out there, but ultimately I think the home inspection system works. It helps to limit the amount of fraud and greed that could potentially happen in the real estate market.
Manditory "code inspections " (not home inspections) are a valid service that LOCAL government provides for the public good. But, at least around here, they are rarely as complete or thorough as actual home inspections. The codies inspect to the current local codes. At least in Illinois, HIs are required to inspect to “current national standard” which is a higher standard.
And, working around Chicago, you don’t have to explain to me about fraud and greed (both public and private).
Everything is open to manipulation, greed and fraud. In the words of the great Warren Buffett “Capitalism can breed greed and fruad, but it also eventually spits those individuals or companies out, and the strong survive. Over the past 200 years we have lived in the greatest economy ever to exist. I would never change capitalism just because of the few that try to cheat or game the system”. That was a quote of his during a recent CNBC special where Warren Buffett and Bill Gates were asked questions from Columbia University students about the future of capitalism.
I am very much against government, which knows very little and has pretty much ultimate authority (but no liability), setting standards (and enacting them into law) when there are many private, and more scientifically based and authoritative groups out there that do a better job.
What I object to is such a group setting a standard, based more upon political rational than on-the-ground realities, and getting the government to squash all its competitors by enacting the groups particular standards into law. This stops all competition and innovation.
In short, when the government (federal) tries to “help” they usually mess things up more:
- Social Security - 78 some years to get it right. Now it’s broke.
- Medicare - 43 some years to get it right. Now its broke.
(between these two, there are some $12 trillion of outstanding liability, with no assets to pay for them).
- Railroads (Amtrack) - Broke. Subsidies every year. Ditto the U.S. Mail Service.
In short, whatever the federal government tries to “fix” it breaks. This is because the federal government does not know how to run a business, and believes that it can just pass a law and reality will change.