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Fools you are... who say you like to learn from your mistakes... I prefer to learn from the mistakes of others, and avoid the costs of my own.
Count Otto von Bismarck

Nevik wrote: Of course, the next step will be to sell ad space to Nike and McDonald's. Think of the possibilities... Who needs Big Brother when corporate America has already indoctrinated the children. Let's face it, the US postal service has found itself a cash cow. It literally has a license to
print money because it realizes that much of the collectible stamps will never even be used. Sure, other countries do it, but the US trend reeks of exploitation - should Martin Luther King Jr. really be treated the same as Elvis?

V.M. You are right in saying that the US Postal Service is a state monopoly that has the license to print money (or rather the equivalent of it), in the form of postal stamps.

And it has the exclusive right (monopoly!) to collect and to distribute the most of mail. But if someone is searching for Big Brothers, they have to be found in such monopolies, imposed by Big Governments and not in the corporate America (that neither prints money nor indoctrinates children in its schools). The corporate America can propose, but cannot impose; I never heard about somebody who was _obliged_ to wear a Nike or to eat a hamburger. Therefore: Big Macs yes, Big Governments no! :-)

One cannot guess  the greatness of a person looking at his image on a small piece of paper (V.M.).

P. A. wrote.. I am not sure this logic holds. Yes the US Postal Service can print "money" (stamps) but is required to give service in return for them. Sort of like when the currency was on the gold standard (although I certainly do not equal the mail service with gold!). Second, people who need to send mail may be forced to use the postal service, but people who want to buy philatelic collectibles are most certainly not.

V.M. If I should understand that USPS (or any other PS) has to give some service for its printed stamps and the Treasure quite less service for its printed money, then I agree with you. The goal of Big Govmnts in printing money (and/or stamps) is to control the economy through it. I can see a potential Big Brother hidden rather somewhere here, then in the corporate America - and this was in fact the point of my earlier posting.

I haven't said or implied that somebody is _obliged_ to buy philatelic material (please check), therefore it is also not a question of logic, but rather a misunderstanding.

Question (to Radio Erevan): Can we buy stamps for our mail or for our collections elsewhere as from the Postal Services? Answer: Yes, from people who bought it once from the same Postal Services.

The Republic of Romania (as distinguished from the earlier Romanian Socialist Republic) issued its first stamp the January 8, 1990. It commemorates the popular uprising against the communism of December 22, 1989. The Romanian Socialist Republic and its forerunner, the Romanian People's Republic, issued 4492 stamps and S/S. The first stamp of the Romanian People's Republic was issued the January 25, 1948 and is dedicated to the 1948 census (the results of this census were largely used for later expropriations, officially named nationalizations). Posted 1/19/99.

Stephen Suffet wrote in the message Happy Birthday: Franklin Delano Roosevelt, at one time the USA's best known philatelist, was born January 30, 1882. FDR has appeared on quite a few stamps of the USA and elsewhere. So has his wife, (Anna) Eleanor Roosevelt. But did you know that FDR's predecessor in the White House, Herbert Hoover, was also a stamp collector? Yes, it's true. So that means in the 1932 election, the USA had a philatelist as the candidate of each of the two major political parties. It seems like Washington, DC, could use a little more philately and much less of a lot of other things these days!

V.M. For most Americans, FDR is still the the person who got the country out of the depression, for some Americans FDR is the father of the big government, for many citizens of Central and Eastern Europe he is the man of Yalta (the treaty that permitted the Soviet Union to impose communism and the control over half Europe for the painful time of 45 years). One can see a pale reflection of this not so distant history, based on stamps issued during the mentioned period, on my page on communism. Then one can eventually judge better whether the mentioned birthday was an unconditionally happy one. What a pity that being a philatelist does not improve political wisdom by itself. Posted 1/31/99 on RCSD.

And lets hope that the catalogue publishers ignore it too. Bob. (Lewinsky/Clinton stamp)

V.M. If the stamp is a valid one, I would like that the catalogue editors publish it, as they should publish information about any valid stamp. It is their right to publish what they wish, of course, with the risk to loose some buyers on the way. BTW, the issue in question could be overprinted now with: "Not guilty" (should be taken is a joke, not as a suggestion :-) Posted 2/13/99 on RCSD.

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Revised: 06/20/00.

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