Define freedom for the average American living throughout the final decades of the eighteenth century. It was about not paying taxes to a guy overseas. This in the first place, then came the other important declarations and bills of rights. In a glance, look at the current Swiss Constitution and governing system, it is as close as a replica may get to the initial American Constitution and governing system. What makes Switzerland so distinct in Europe, and possibly in the entire world? Low taxes! And neutrality, also known as no involvements in whatever wars overseas.
Unlike Switzerland, the United States is a massive continental and oceanic nation, has practically infinite natural resources, can sustain its independence without strategical treaties, which are essential for keeping a status quo of freedom for the Swiss state and its citizens. However, in spite of all the aforementioned advantages, the US had to play the part of the global cop, for more than seven decades. The gains have been tempting in many ways, but the prime victim of this feat is the freedom of the American citizen. So let's define freedom for the average American living during the 1950s. It was about owning a house, a car, a TV set and various gadgets that he was capable to buy and use at ridiculous prices. He could move or stay, drive and stop according to his free will, without excessively struggling to make ends meet, without caring much, if at all, about "the economy," or the "fundamentals," or the "volatile markets" due to some carton dictator of the desert.
Look at some basic items that the average American guy, and gal, could buy for a price in the 1950s.
- Yearly Inflation Rate USA 1.09%
- Average Cost of new house: $8,450.00
- Average wages per year: $3,210.00
- Cost of a gallon of Gas: 18 cents
- Average Cost of a new car: $1,510.00
- Stromburg Black and White Television: $249.95
- Ball Point Pen: $0.25
- Samsonite Case: $25.00
- Clock Radio: $59.95
Here's a list of gas prices in the US for unleaded regular.
- In 1976 gas costs averaged $0.61 a gallon
- In 1980 gas costs averaged $1.22 a gallon
- In 1990 gas costs averaged $1.10 a gallon
- In 2000 gas costs averaged $1.51 a gallon
Now look right, or scroll down the page to find that blue module showing you the Live gasoline prices, US nationwide! The regular was $4.30 when I wrote this article. Give it a try, look at the publishing date and compare with the time you're reading this, to see how dynamic is the rise of regular, like in those good ole' days comedies where the goof read a price when starting to pump the tank, then had to pay a higher price when his tank was full.
Something isn't right with freedom in America. For a reason or another, it matters less, since, unlike Switzerland, America needs no good neighboring paperwork to validate its own sovereignty. Take the green energy quest. Indeed a noble endeavor. It will certainly pay off when new vacuum technologies will make our cars (flying cars) feed by themselves from a parallel universe. But until that day will dawn on the American economy, and gasoline will burn no more, until then what is the purpose of artificially skyrocketing fuel prices?
Besides more taxation and less freedom, that is the question.