Last night I read a blog post by an Angolan writer who is a student in France and being deported because the French have decided that xenophobia is the fashion of the decade. It was depressing.
Then my husband sent me this link which was so bizarre I had to share.
Here's the gist: Google offers a free service. Offended French Company (OFC) offers the same service, but charges for it. Google, therefore, is unfairly competing and should have to pay damages because OFC isn't getting as much business as they'd like.
Several commentators linked to this gem of a letter from way, way back which is brilliant satire and a wonderful reminder on why protectionism just doesn't work.
Pfft. Those French. Since restaurant 1 can sue restaurant 2 for charging less for their roast chicken, price wars will end. The consumer will just be economically violated by price fixing instead. Yay.
But it won't end there. First you have companies suing companies, but it's not too hard to slide down the wiggly logical slope to where companies will sue customers. Next thing you know, water companies will be suing people with wells, for cutting into their profits by not buying THEIR water. And consumers being fined for not using enough electricity. Cosmetic companies can get on board: think of all the people who don't wear makeup! And the ex-alcoholics who stopped buying booze? Oh, the possibilities here are endless. Endless.
Think of all the industries you don't support on a regular basis. Every time you help a stranger change a tire or jump their car, you're taking money away from the towing companies. When you help an old woman carry her groceries to the car, that's practically stealing from the bag boys who need their tip. Hand delivering a letter instead of mailing it? Post office workers should be allowed to charge you the full value of a stamp. Look at all those people on the beach, taking in sun for free when they could be paying thousands of dollars for access to private clubs with pools and lounge chairs. That's not fair, not fair at all.