Ludwig the Mad Wasn't

Voice Card  -  Volume 28  -  John Card Number 12  -  Wed, Jun 9, 1993 12:36 AM

This is ONE OF 3 responses to VC 28 Holly 3 ("If You Waz the Woz")...


At the risk of offending you and Janine, if I had as much money as Woz, I would do EXACTLY what he is doing (except that I'd add a maze).

Mr. Wozniak is continuing in the fine tradition of Sarah Winchester, William Randolph Hearst, and Ludwig the Mad. Each of these visionaries suffered from the clucking of their unimaginative contemporaries for having the audacity to build their dreams so large that they could not be ignored. Their respective castles were dismissed as obscene flights of excess and lunacy. And yet the homes Ludwig, William, and Sarah built were eventually bequeathed to the public at large and continue to this day to provide enjoyment to the masses, spark a sense of wonder in the thoughful, and fill the coffers of the state (Hearst Castle takes in enough money to pay for the entire California park system).

Like Janine, I am disgusted by inequities of our society. But for those rare, slightly mad tycoons whose pursuit of luxury shatters the ordinary conventions of fur coats and sports cars and transcends mere vulgar excess, I have not only forgiveness but genuine admiration! These are true ponarvians! Their absurd monuments remind us all that nothing is impossible. And long after the rest of our hard-working but all-too-dull society has ground itself into dust, these monuments, these pyramids and Taj Mahals, will be what our descendants remember and even cherish.

I suppose we could try to stamp out people like the Woz, tax away their fortunes and forbid them from doing anything unusual. And we could take the money and buy grim rows of apartment buildings to house the homeless. This, indeed, is precisely what Roger has proposed on several occassions. The irony is, that when the Woz's home is turned into a state park, the tourist dollars generated will far exceed the money originally spent. The local economy will be enriched and generations of school children will have amazing summer vacations!

Tax the rich up to 50%, says I, but let them frolic with what remains. And if we are going supress anything, let us supress mediocrity! Here's to the Woz! Long may he build!