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The free market will survive

Jim Breasted

Dear Editor: I love this valley. Just when I think I’ve seen and heard everything and I am about to fall asleep, along comes Tuesday’s Aspen Times with, on the one hand, Mick Ireland’s Guest Opinion on page A11 declaring that Aspen rejected the free market 30 years ago, and, on the other hand at one and the same time, the Hyatt Grand Aspen full page advertisement on page A24 with a picture of Albert Schweizer “at Aspen’s 1949 Goethe Bicentennial Festival” offering “deeded opportunities for one- to four-bedroom residences from $100,000 to just under $1 million dollars.”It has been often reported that Albert Schweizer had no idea where Aspen was when Walter Paepcke invited him to the Goethe Bicentennial, nor did he know that, as the Hyatt ad proclaims, “being a little bit smarter is an Aspen tradition.”I’ll say this for the free market: it will use absolutely anyone, anywhere and anything to make another sale. They say that when a cat rubs up against your leg it is always wise to remember that the cat is not being affectionate but is just scratching its back and waiting around until it hears the sound of a can being opened. Imagining Albert Schweizer in the Cameroon jungle practicing Bach preludes and fugues on his out-of-tune organ, practicing compassion on the natives and dreaming of his future as an Aspen real estate icon has awakened me and kept me from falling off my log and banging my head.Now I can lie down and go back to sleep safely in my own bed secure in the knowledge that my anxiety over the absence of the free market was overblown.Jim BreastedCarbondale


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