Monday, November 11, 2013

Its Settled The Federal Government Does Not Understand Economics And An Elephant Will Die For It

This is one of the most insane things I have ever seen. The ivory trade has been shut down to make sure that various creatures, primarily Elephants, are not driven to destruction. In this effort the U.S. Government collects and confiscates tons of ivory related products. Now they are going to destroy it. Put aside the destruction of art which I thought was a Taliban/iconoclast/totalitatrian fetish. What happens when this much Ivory dissapears-all things being equal? THE VALUE OF IVORY GOES UP! What happens then? People take greater risks to poach and to smuggle. What the Federal Government should do is lay down certificates for each item and sell them in the United States driving the price of Ivory down. This lessens the incentive to poach. In fact, in Botswana the government allows tribes to have ownership over the elephant herds with the result that those herds suffer far less severe poaching than elsewhere in Africa. Treating ivory like drugs is likely to wipe out a lot of animals. When the price of ivory goes up the supply of elephants goes down with nothing to increase the supply of the animal. This is a recipe for species disaster. Don't get me started on Narwhales.


Dave S. said...

We should have used it to make fancy control knobs and such for NASA spacecraft. Project Steampunk!

More to the point, I will not listen to you talk about ivory as I know you are only trying to pass me Piracy.

JCC said...

Civ joke FTW! Well played, Mr. Slattery. Just stay away from volcano (especially if you are Minoan).

On the merits, I find myself unaccountably in sympathy with JJV's argument. I will now immediately withdraw to reexamine my views.