I know, how the hell do I tie together public/private partnerships, or more importantly government control of private industry to a comic book. I don’t have to. The Avengers covered it for us years ago.
Avengers #181 came out in 1979. In this comic the government decided that the Avengers had too many members running around trying to save the world and they would have to get by with only seven members. To make matters worse the government was going to decide which seven.
Let’s look at this more closely. The Avengers is a group that was funded by the Stark Family (yes I know they profited by building weapons for governments). They used their profit dollars, which were theirs, and legally earned, to form and fund the Avengers.
The Avengers were a group whose mission was to stop threats to innocent civilians that the government couldn’t stop. Ok, I know they sometimes destroyed cities in the process, but don’t governments do similar types of collateral damage?
What’s my point? In this book a government agent showed up to tell the Avengers they had too many members and they would have to operate with only seven, and the government would decide which seven.
Hey, private industry, thanks for doing that thing we can’t do, but do it with less. Do it with our rules that make absolutely no sense.
Why should people go out and risk their lives, fortunes, or potential harm in a case when the government wants to dictate the terms?
I remember a case when I lived in Massachusetts where a woman was being mugged on a subway, a good samaritan stepped in to break it up. The attorney general of the state when on TV and said “we don’t like it when people use self help, you should really wait for government people to come help you.”
Ok, interesting concept, but why not help yourself? Why wait for someone else?
Are we really going to centrally control everything all the time? That seems to be the direction, and in some weird way the Avengers appear to have predicted this garbage.
Should we permit the government to start to dictate terms in which people help other people? Ok, I know that hasn’t happened yet, but are we on a slippery slope for this type of thing?
We might be, we are dictating to companies how they do things with massive regulation. We have entire industries that are now being told how to do business, being constrained by various approval cycles, and now there is a push in congress to “mandate” nothing but renewable energies coast to coast at 100%.
Should government be involved in everyone’s personal business? What are those limits? Maybe the Avengers can tell us.