Maryland Senate Bill Seeks Repeal of Law of Supply and Demand

SB185 in the Maryland Legislature this term seeks to repeal the Law of Supply and Demand. Here’s the synopsis from the Legislature’s website:

Prohibiting a person from selling or offering to sell essential goods and services during a state of emergency for a price of more than 15% above the price charged by that person for those goods and services a specified time prior to the state of emergency; prohibiting a person from selling or offering to sell repair or reconstruction services or services used for emergency cleanup for a price of more than 15% above the price charged by that person for those services immediately prior to the state of emergency; creating exceptions; etc.

As Daniel Webster once said—”Every man’s life, liberty, and property are in danger when the Legislature is in session.”

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  • SignPainterGuy

    Sounds to me to be more about “anti-gouging” than repealling / outlawing the laws of supply and demand. IOW, in a state of emergency, that $6.00 box of wood screws does not suddenly become a $60.00 bos. Or gasoline jumping from $4./gal. to $20.00.

    I do agree w/ Webster; the gov. that governs least governs best.

    • WarEagle82

      Alas, you don’t seem to understand economics at all. And neither do the idiots in Maryland who keep imposing taxes on the wealthy causing the wealthy to move to Virginia and thus causing their tax revenues to decline.

      “Stupid is as stupid does….”

      • SignPainterGuy

        Thanks for your opinion, WE (I think I remember you from Michelle Malkin`s blog). I re-read the original post, my comment, yours and I must say, nothing has changed my mind. I understand economics just fine and I stand by my comment !

        • Andrew J. Patrick

          Well then, you’re wrong. The value of a thing is not fixed; price is elastic. The value of something does shoot up when there’s a sudden demand for it.

          • SignPainterGuy

            You missed the point. The ruling is to keep business people from gouging customers in times of emergency by raising prices by more than 15%, a reasonable thing in Ts of E.

            Now, if a biz owner wants to put his wares up at auction, when customers understand the new rules, fine, but just gouging because he knows people are desperate, that`s taking unfair advantage.

            I AM a biz owner for 30 yrs, a capitalist, but in times of emergency, reasonable restraints are in order.

            • contructiveConservative

              I’m afraid that I’m going to have to agree with Andrew that it is you that have missed the point. Frankly I wrote an article about “gouging” just after Sandy explaining the “batshitcraziness” of positions such as yours.

              Let’s just address one small portion of your argument.

              Let’s assume, for the moment, you raise your retail price by 15 per cent and you sell out of the product. How are you going to pay the new higher wholesale price for the product to replace that which you just sold? How are you going to pay the rent, etc. now that you have no income and yet you sold your limited amount of goods for the old price?

              It’s really ridiculous with little, if any, positive consequences.

  • Evi L. Bloggerlady

    Better we all suffer together than some benefit from having the resources to pay to get supplies?

    But it is not even that, many of us would gladly pay $10 a gallon for fuel to keep a generator running.

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  • Louis Nettles

    Was Rhett Butler a price gouger?

  • V the K

    Typical of the People’s Republic of Maryland. This must be their next order of business after the gun grab.

  • nickshaw

    Man (or woman) has a business. There is an emergency of some sort that increases demand for the things he sells.
    Restocking those things will take quite some time (there is an emergency after all!).
    Does he keep the same prices (unlike his competition who raise their prices) and sell out in a couple of days leaving him with zero or next to zero income for an unknown length of time, eating into his savings to actually effect restocking when the emergency has passed?
    A smart businessman will not “gouge”. He will hike his prices just a bit to weather the storm and be happy with it.
    Consumers will remember which businesses gouged them when they were in need and direct their business to those that did not after the emergency has passed.
    This is exactly what I would do and I would make sure all my friends and acquaintances knew who the gouging businesses were.
    The free market will look after itself. Some people will be stung but, they will remember.
    We don’t need government deciding how much anything is “worth”. It’s what we are willing to pay and, despite the relatively few bad apples that will take advantage of an emergency, most businesses don’t take this route.
    Besides, who gets to say what an emergency actually is?
    With passage of this law you can see government sticking it’s nose in whenever they decide to.
    ‘Cause that’s what government does.