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Friday, November 11, 2011

Thank you to all Veterans, and their families

When I teach about public goods, the one clear example of a pure public good (perhaps the only one that no student has ever wanted to argue about) is national defense. Even the most hard-core of Libertarians will accept that there is at least one arena where government is needed, in the provision of a strong military. But what we don't usually talk about in economics classes is how lucky all of us civilians are that there are thousands of men and women who are willing to serve in our military. God knows, I would never want to do it, so I am exceedingly thankful for those that do.

On a personal note, my sister married a Navy man a couple years ago. For me, this has been great so far, since he was stationed in San Diego and I have had the opportunity to spend much more time with my sister and my nephew. But my brother-in-law's next assignment is overseas and they will be moving next year. Thankfully, it is not an active war zone but for the next few years, my sister will be raising a toddler in a foreign country, thousands of miles from friends and family, and by herself for months at a time while her husband is at sea. Thinking about it, and worrying about her, has driven home for me the immense sacrifices made not only by our solders but by their families. So to all who are serving, and who have served, in our armed forces, and to your families, my humble thanks...

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