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This is why your Amazon gift purchases arrive so quickly

This is why your Amazon gift purchases arrive so quickly

The Merry Tale of Air Cargo Deregulation!

One of the most difficult challenges to overcome when explaining the dangers of big government and hyperregulation is trying to create a connection between the product or service being regulated, and the average voter paying for it. The USDA regulates our meat, but we don’t see the process; we just pick up a package at the store, and pay whatever the sticker says because, well, food is food.

The people at the Mercatus Center decided to get creative with the anti-regulation message by showing the connection between the long arm of government, and how long it takes to receive those gifts you ordered from Amazon at the last minute.

On paper, the explanation is pretty dry:

Professor of Public Policy at George Mason University Kenneth Button shares the story of how air cargo deregulation in the 1970s paved the way for low-cost, reliable overnight shipping, which in turn allowed for groundbreaking new e-commerce businesses like Amazon and eBay. These innovations enable everyone to get their presents on time for the holidays – almost as fast as delivery by Santa himself!

There’s no soporific like a good rundown of mid-70s regulatory reform (literally, nothing compares) but throw in a a few elves and some reindeer and you get something cute, relatable, and most importantly, shareable.

‘Twas two nights before Christmas, and all through their houses
Every creature was busy, double-clicking their mouses.
Christmas was coming, but there were still presents to buy–
Thank heavens overnight shipping allows boxes to fly.
“But how can this be?” the people asked in their haze
“With so many miles to cover, why aren’t there delays?”

What allowed this to happen is a very old rule,
That deregulated air cargo – isn’t that cool!
You see, express planes were smaller, unlike today.
Bigger is better, but the law said “No way!”

And if Fisherman Fred shipped lively lobsters from Maine
He hoped for some room in the belly of a passenger plane
But if Aunt Edna had checked in fifteen pieces of luggage
Fred’s lobsters would arrive days later, looking quite sluggish.

Freed from restrictions, more packages could flow
And arrive soon as promised, even in snow.
This allowed private carriers to grow and expand,
Unleashing innovations no one could’ve planned
With better shipping options, online shopping exploded,
And business inventories grew leaner: before they were bloated!

Thanks to rolling back rules that were surely passé,
Delivery is almost as fast as on Santa’s great sleigh.

Props to the people at Mercatus for helping make the conservative message of deregulation and free markets more accessible!


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legacyrepublican | December 17, 2014 at 3:11 pm

I blame President Reagan for giving us Ebay, FedEx, and Amazon.

A perfect example of Bastiat’s “What is seen and what is not seen”:

In the economic sphere an act, a habit, an institution, a law produces not only one effect, but a series of effects. Of these effects, the first alone is immediate; it appears simultaneously with its cause; it is seen. The other effects emerge only subsequently; they are not seen; we are fortunate if we foresee them.

There is only one difference between a bad economist and a good one: the bad economist confines himself to the visible effect; the good economist takes into account both the effect that can be seen and those effects that must be foreseen.

Yet this difference is tremendous; for it almost always happens that when the immediate consequence is favorable, the later consequences are disastrous, and vice versa. Whence it follows that the bad economist pursues a small present good that will be followed by a great evil to come, while the good economist pursues a great good to come, at the risk of a small present evil.

Yep. Markets work every time they’re tried.

They foster innovation, efficient use of resources, and an improved standard of living, among LOTS of other good things.

BIG GOVERNMENT ruins. (See the period?)

Just wait ’til Obama puts his hands on it.

The person most responsible for airline deregulation was the late Alfred Kahn, former Dean of Arts and Sciences at Cornell. He was also known for his portrayal of The Modern Major General and The Captain of the Pinafore. He was a fine fellow, and I can see his signature on my diploma from where I sit.

So, remember kids, whenever you’re not sure if Obama or Carter was the worst President in our Nation’s history: Carter gave us the gift of transportation de-regulation (not just air cargo, but air passenger travel and trucking de-regulation). This was, and remains, some of the best legislation ever passed.

To date, the ONLY decision Obama has ever made that was not an unmitigated disaster was his selection of Bo as First Dog.

    Milhouse in reply to Aarradin. | December 17, 2014 at 11:08 pm

    0bama’s been good on space policy. And, um, er, sorry, can’t think of anything else.

      Voyager in reply to Milhouse. | December 18, 2014 at 1:15 pm

      And the only reason he’s been good for space is because he hated it, and assumed that handing it over to commercial companies would kill it.

      Would that he throw more of us into that thar briar patch…

    EntropyM in reply to Aarradin. | December 19, 2014 at 1:41 am

    During the Carter administration, home beer brewing was dereregulated leading to home brewing and eventually the craft beer boom. He’s got that going for him.

So Amazon’s regional distribution centers and use of “Prime” to steer people toward specific products doesn’t get credit?