As we approach Christmas, a holiday season ripe for the usual anti-capitalism sentiment as countless of people who celebrate the date prepare to buy presents to put under the tree, we are reminded that in times of crisis, only individuals working in a private business, where they have incentives to act responsibly so that they may also benefit themselves, will be able to meet the market’s demands.
In the end, no government bureaucrat can do what a simple pizza delivery man can. The story of Eric Olsen of Omaha, Nebraska, is a perfect example of this.
After Hurricane Matthew hit Florida, forcing countless of locals to be shunned from the world as communication lines were cut due to the natural disaster, Olsen knew he had to do something to make sure his 87-year-old grandmother was OK.
As he attempted to communicate with her, Olsen contacted the local police and the sheriff’s department, and yet nobody could tell him if Claire Olsen, his grandmother, was alive. After two days of agony, Olsen finally had a brilliant idea.
Instead of calling another government agency in search for help, Olsen found a local pizza place and made the call that changed everything.
“I just [finally] said, ‘I’m going to order her a pizza, and if they can deliver it, then I know she’s alive,'” Olsen told reporters.
Letting the delivery person know about his grandmother’s situation, Olsen asked the delivery person to call him when he finally delivered the pizza. So once the delivery man arrived, he put Claire in contact with her grandson.
“Police and fire couldn’t do it, but Papa John’s got there in 30 minutes and put the cellphone to her ear,” he jokingly said.
But as it turns out, the joke is really on anyone who truly believes that in a time of crisis, only governments should be trusted to act on our behalf.
When we trust the government to take on the responsibilities that truly should be our own, we also give bureaucrats and politicians powers over our own lives that should never be delegated to anyone else but ourselves.
If anything, this story goes to show that the market takes care of its consumers not because it has power over them, but because it has a responsibility to deliver, otherwise, it loses customers to competitors.
Once we all truly understand this, there will be no more need to convince anybody that a party is superior to another, and that a candidate in particular will do anything for us, as the public will finally realize politicians are not to be trusted.