Just a quick note before the actual blog: I’m at AERO in Friedrichshafen right now! I’ll be there until Saturday. Come see me! (Foyer Ost). Yes, I know I’m repeating myself.
On to today’s subject: Have you ever hear of Amilcare Puviani? He was an Italian economist, is regarded as an early representative of the public-choice-theory, and focused on public finances in his work. His most popular work “Teoria della illusione finanziaria” is basically a guide or manual for the state, how to squeeze out as much money out of a population without them noticing or getting aggravated about it. A key item on his list is to make the whole system as convoluted and intransparent as possible, so that nobody knows how much taxes he or she actually pays and so that the whole system becomes an unseizable, intangible, amorphous money sucking blob that is impossible to fight. (That wording is mine, not his, to be fair).
When I look at my tax forms, I have no doubt that this book is recommended reading for every public officer who reaches a certain level in every treasury department around the world.
And when I think about the accumulated time spent on accounting and tax stuff by millions upon millions of people, it makes me weep for the lost time, joy, productivity and potential of mankind. And the next time you tear your hairs out doing your taxes, remember: It’s not *just* the natural evolution of big institutions at play here. It most probably is all done on purpose.
Anyway, since I’m away from my office right now, I can’t reply to comments, but just preemptively: Yes, I like roads and schools, that’s not the point.
I like how Hans continuously tries to come up with clever ways to keep his employees motivated. I guess if you are cheap, you need to try to be clever. I am not all that sure he is succeeding this time. Of course none of us in the real aviation world have ever dealt with operators that are cheap (*cough cough*) and know that this strip is completely invented.
But let’s do something new here! Post your favorite “motivational” quotes underneath the strip! Let’s see what motivates you!
I don’t own a plane, but I do own a house. Well, technically, I own [(the house – the open mortgage) / 2], but although the difference to how I treated my rented apartments to how I treat my house is noticeable, it is not huge. I was always an exemplary renter and treated the apartment with respect. Not just because I wanted my deposit back, but because I’m a stickler for efficiency and hate waste. I don’t just disklike wasting my own time, money and energy, I also dislike wasting other peoples resources. Ask me how I feel about our taxes and public spending, haha!
Anyway, I do admit that I am thinking way more long term and financially calculating when it comes to my own property. And of course, I end up doing way more work myself!
I feel with Chuck. Although in my case, I’m mostly allergic to dogs, cats and dust mites and a bit allergic to a few plants. Since there are no dogs or cats in my personal environment, and my other allergies (e.g. poplar trees) are rather mild, my life is almost completely unaffected. The only thing that bothers me is my dust mite allergy. After cleaning my office, for example, I sometimes have a hard time breathing when I’m lying in bed at night. After going to an allergy test, I even have a written recommendation from my doctor that “dusting should be done by third persons”, which I like to quote to my wife. Who likes to respond she’s no third person, she’s my wife.
Anyway, that’s why I’m a comic artist and don’t work as a cleaner.
One of the keys to being able to survive as a cartoonist is a frugal lifestyle. So, I can understand Chuck’s impulse to save a buck here and there. They all add up, in the end. But in my opinion, being frugal is mostly being smart about the big investments, such as your house, your car, etc. Or, as in Chuck’s case, aviator watches. For his latest watch, Chuck could have gotten himself about 500 pizzas! I know how I would choose. But then, I’m no watch collector.
You guys know which movie Chuck is talking about, right?! Or are we really dating ourselves here? We grew up with all the 80’s movies and so, by default, so did Chuck even though he’s not quite as old as us.
I personally love looking at and into old hangars. You never know what you’ll find in there (of course there is the occasional rat to deal with) and I have seen some great things. Unfortunately I don’t get around the really small airports much anymore flying the heavy helicopters (Chucks hangar would probably be blown down by a Skycrane) but occasionally we end up near old hangars. The best part is if you end up running into some great guy who is in the middle of restoring a really cool plane. I have to say, I have never run into anybody in an old hangar that wasn’t excited to share his and/or his aircraft’s story. Imagine taking a tour through some of the old “Skunk Works” hangars?!!
What are some cool airports with interesting old hangars you guys have stumbled across?
It’s raining cats and dogs here right now. Weirdly enough, when I’m really busy and have tons of work, I like this kind of weather. Because it means I can’t do any other things like gardening etc., since I can’t leave the house (I’m allergic to dogs and especially cats). That means I can really focus on my work with a clear conscience.
What a great idea of Hans! He sure knows how to motivate his staff. And, since we want to spread the positivity around you guys too, how about a really motivating blog post to go along with today’s comic?
A good place to start is always a Winston Churchill quote. Allegedly he once said “Never, never, never give up.” Awesome quote, isn’t it? Now imagine a great photograph of a sunrise in the mountains, or a serene lake, or a guy climbing one of those monumental rocks in the Colorado desert, with that quote superimposed on it in a stylish font. Makes it even better, doesn’t it?
Churchill definitely pictured something like that in his mind, because he took his own advice seriously, including smoking and drinking. Another great motivational quote comes to mind, from Walt Disney: “If you can dream it, you can do it.” Unless you dream of fighting ice giants with a laser lance, riding on godzilla. That’s quite impossible, because the laser would only pass through the ice, of course.
And last but not least, you should aim for the moon! Because if you miss, you may hit a star. Albeit many thousands of years later, and you will be incinerated instantly. But that’s nothing to worry about, because you would have suffocated long before that.
Anyway, I hope I could motivate you and inspire you to some great deeds today with these words! Go forth and be awesome!
First off: I will be at the AERO in Friedrichshafen next week, and will be signing books at the Fliegermagazin booth on Friday 11th from 11:00 to 13:00. Actually, it’s bigger than a booth, because they have a huge area for themselves in the middle of hall A5 (A5-325), so it’s really easy to find. Hope to see some of you there! Even if you already have all our books, just stop by to say hi!
About todays strip: All the non-American readers among you might pause and wonder if we misspelled aluminium. Well, no one knows exactly where the fine line between misspelling something or spelling something the American way is exactly, but in this case it is perfectly fine American spelling. “Nucular” is still wrong though.
It seems Hans really has his ears on the ground when it comes to investment. He probably should read a bit further into the subject of Bitcoin before investing more money in it though. By the way, we’re accepting Bitcoin in our online shops! We only had one order paid that way so far, but, as Hans said, it is important to go with the times. I am pretty sure that cryptocurrencies are here to stay, and it feels exciting to witness their birth. It’s like being there at the beginning of the internet, although it is probably a long way before those things are as stable, easy to use and widely accepted as e.g. email.
So it looks like as if getting rejected by NASA has not slowed Chuck down at all. He’s once again picked himself up and is motoring on with trying to make his dreams a reality. To go where no chicken has gone before…
Will he go to space this time? Is he gonna be able to save enough money for a trip on Virgin Galactic’s “Spaceship 2″? Will Sir Richard Branson have something to say about Chuck going to space?
Time will tell.
For all of you, who are not familiar with Virgin Galactic or Richard Branson, check out their website. The whole thing looks like a pretty crazy project. We’d love to see this thing take off (so to speak) and have Chuck go to space with Justin Bieber, Ashton Kutcher, and Brad Pitt who all already booked tickets for the December 2013 space flight.