Everybody Needs Heavy Equipment

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DARWIN, Australia (May 21, 2007) – Equipment Operator 1st Class Lawrence A. Zeigler practices training on a D8T bulldozer at Robertson Barracks Driver Training Area, Australia. Members of (NMCB) 4 are deployed in support of a United States, Australian Defense Joint Rapid Airfield Construction (JRAC) exercise “Talisman Saber”. Exercise Talisman Saber is designed to maintain a high level of interoperability between U.S. and Australian forces, demonstrating the U.S. and Australian commitment to our military alliance and regional security. U.S. Air Force photo by Master Sgt. Rickie D. Bickle (RELEASED)

It’s gratifying to see that a few people are seeing daylight on the issue of the need of heavy equipment after it was used to help the Palestinians escape Gaza.  The whole adventure of boycotting Caterpillar because their equipment was used to construct “the fence” was idiotic to start with.

Construction equipment–and my family spent more than a century producing it–can be used for good or evil.  It was needed to clean up the mess of Hurricane Katrina, and it’s needed to rebuild people’s homes, businesses, churches and roads when the clean-up is done.  The Iranians use it to hang people from every now and then in lieu of the old gallows.

The use of heavy construction equipment, like any other technology, is in our hands.  We as free moral agents use it for good or evil.  Trying to punish manufacturers just because their equipment is used for purposes you don’t happen to like is stupid, and is an attempt to shift responsibility to places where it doesn’t belong.

Right: more Caterpillar equipment in action, from the cover of my recent reprint Laboratory Soils Testing.

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