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Re: pricing-- a reply to Denis and Jack

Steve, you've  got to make up your mind on your qualification, either
you are an assistant professeur in philosophy as your signature claims
,or you are engaged in the conservation business. I respect your
opinions on the present topic althought I do not agree with it. I will
respect your opinion about the bookbinding and conservation business
when you present me with credential on the topic. In other words, what
are your accomplishments in the field of bookbinding and restoration?
Apologies from me you are unlikely to receive. First, my saying that you
do not have a clue about the business is no more insulting than you
saying that I did not understand a post. Does this imply that I do not
have the intelligence to understand? Second, I really think that you
have had no experience in a privatly owned business, be it bookbinding
or shoemaking or farming. Speaking of farming, your apple analogy does
not make any sense when applied to thread number 2, the apples you are
selling at any sort of price have grown on a tree owned by the public.
If you think there is no ethical issue in moonlighting and profiting at
the expense of the institution and the tax payers money, then why not
take some of the rare books in your library and sell it cheaper than a
rare book dealer would,and, all under the forgiving umbrella of free
enterprise, make a bundle.
To answer thread number 1, there is no problem for any one to charge
lower prices than the competition, as long as it is done at their own
cost, but it is unethical if the community is picking up the tab.
On the second chapter you go on taking Jack appart. You've got to admit
that the sentence is, to say the least, ambiguous. But I will ask you, :
do "ethical expectation of income" applies to academics as well as

Steven D. Hales wrote:

  >you obviously don't have any clue about the binding ,
  >restoration and conservation business.

  It is unfortunate that Denis Gouey chose to insult me rather than
  my argument. I know that Denis is a fair person as well as an
  binder, and I am confident that this is just an indication of his
  on this topic.

  There are two threads in this discussion that need to be pried
  1. Is it wrong for part-time binders to charge lower than average
  2. Is it wrong for binders to use publicly subsidized equipment in
  order to
  moonlight and charge lower prices than the private sector?

  Jack Thompson, in his declaration that "Dennis Gouey is right and
  Hales is wrong" addresses only the second question, and mistakenly
  that I am doing the same. However, this is false. I addressed the

  Moreover, here is an analogy to support my original point. Suppose
  that I
  own an apple tree, on my land, that I personally cultivate and
  harvest. I
  am at liberty to sell my apples, or give them away free to whomever
  choose. If I decide to give them all away to whomever asks, I am not

  unfairly competing with the local grocery store. They are *my*
  apples, and
  the grocery store has no claim against me that I charge what they
  The store has no rights over me, my apples, or my labor. Likewise I
  own all
  of my binding equipment, and paid for it from my private funds.
  Professional binders may be resentful if I do free bindings for
  asks (since those binders wanted the business), but this
  resentfulness is
  not a moral argument. As in the apple case, I am at moral liberty to
  do as
  I wish.

  To address another of Jack's claims, he writes,

  >Steve says: "No bookbinder, professional or otherwise, has an
  >>expectation of any sort of income or salary at all."
  >I haven't the foggiest idea what Steve means here.  Expectation of
  >has absolutely nothing to do with ethics.

  This is strange. Jack claims not to understand me, then gives an
  approximate paraphrase of what I said. His following complaints
  income confuse me, however. Jack complains about the cost of his
  and the little money he has made on videotapes and writing books.
  Since he
  thinks that "expectation of income has absolutely nothing to do with

  ethics," he obviously does not believe that these things are unfair
  unjust. Therefore I conclude that he is either 1. complaining for
  its own
  sake, 2. expressing envy of those who are better off financially as
  result of these practices, or 3. expressing resentment of those who
  better off financially as a result of these practices.

  Jack also claims that "But do not think of ethics.  Ethics have no
  place in
  business as conducted by non-profit institutions or governments." As
  matter of practice, I sincerely hope that he is mistaken. As a
  matter of
  principle, morality has an important place in these arenas. Indeed,
  thought this was the whole topic of conversation.



  Steven D. Hales
  Assistant Professor                     email: hales@xxxxxxxxxx
  Department of Philosophy                phone: (717) 389-4229
  Bloomsburg University                   fax: (717) 389-2094
  Bloomsburg, PA 17815


Denis Gouey

Denis Gouey Bookbinding Studio
PO Box 383 Norfolk CT, 06058

860 542 5063


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