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Everything here that is not at one with Primus and the TFM is copyrighted and trademarked by their respectives. Usage here is not meant to infringe on those rights. By the same token, we suggest that our rights not be infringed upon, either. Got it?

Hehe...I suppose I can add my two cent's worth here at the end of this disclaimer, right? Right!


I apologise for intruding. Usually, I try to stay out of any of these hot topics, but when something really gets my goat...well, we all have a way to deal with it, I guess. Somehow, this subject seems to have goaded me into creating an entire website as a rebuttal, of sorts. And if you wish, you can read on as to some of my thoughts on the subject.

Like many of you, I am running into the problem that, now that the Transformers are enjoying such popularity again, some of the dealers I buy from will go 30% or more HIGHER than Lee's guide lists them! When was the last time you's seen Jazz go for $120 LOOSE! But that's the listing as of the Nov/Dec issue of Lee's AFN. Somebody, somewhere, has paid this much for that toy. Felt like slapping whoever did that? I certainly wanted to.

But...even though I stand here slack-jawed at such a price...I am part of this problem. I admit it, I'm guilty. It's my fault.

I contribute to that problem by the fact that if I didn't have that toy, I would probably break down in the end, and pay it. Which is exactly what someone did. It was reported, and is now considered the "going" rate for such a piece. Yes, it IS nothing more than a toy, but...how does one explain a passion for something in mere words? If you can't get the toy anywhere else, what do you do? Take eBay for example. A 30 dollar transformer goes for 120 in many cases. At least, the one I just lost out on in a bidding war did. :-) Why, I ask? It's a hunk of plastic. But I wanted it. And, amazingly enough, someone else wanted it MORE!

Paying actual value of the toy according to the bible of Lee's AFN be damned, I guess. This hunk of plastic is more than the sum of its parts; it has...a symbolic value, which is of course reflected in part of the cost problem.

So, what can a person do. Gripe about it? Perhaps. Do something about it? Even better, but what? Refuse to buy from the dealers? It's been done, on a LOT of levels, both directly and via ebay, and with some limited success. Unfortunately...there's no way to get everyone on the same bandwagon. More Transfans come into the fold everyday. And sometimes many people will simply want the same thing, and drive the cost up.

This new website is, in some small way, part of my answer to 'doing something about it'. Heck, I'm part of the problem, shouldn't I be part of the solution too?

The TF Militia: "Taking Back our Transformers by Force!" It's one (albeit humorous) way to deal with the frustration. I envision all the TF fans arising as one, organizing, and seeking out the individuals responsible for the prices on these toys. In my case, I target the "greedy" dealer. Anyone who charges 1400 bucks for an opened Menasaur Giftset get's taken prisoner, the hostage TFs are freed, and the store is obliterated. Obviously, not a workable idea in practice. (Or is it? The truth is out there, but it's certainly not OUR doing.) But perhaps a good way to deal with the frustration in one's imagination. :-) Hey, I never said I had THE answer. Just part of AN answer.

SO, to ramble on some more, and to reiterate my opinion, we have a big problem, but contrary to my making fun of dealers in this site, it isn't just their fault. They sell something for a price, and report it to Lee's AFN. AFN in turn, sends out a price guide, which the dealers go by! Nasty little circle so far, aint it?

My ultimate point? It's not really a circle. It's a triangle. And we are the third point on it. Us. The collectors. We are doing this to ourselves. After all...we ARE paying these prices. In other words, the triangle is complete, but who IS the master? Apparently not us any longer; the process itself has taken on a life of it's own. We complain, but continue to pay the price. And feel bitter. Our own passions are our undoing.

This writing has gone on a bit longer than I intended. So to close, I invite everyone to wonder if there might be some way we ourselves could take charge of this process again. To TAKE BACK our Transformers, as it were. We're all in this together. So perhaps together, we can find a way to solve this on-going dilemna, to the benefit of all. I look forward to that day. I hope you do, too.

As a friend of ours says, "Until All Are ONE!"

Yours in the Cause,

The Futuristgroup

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