Updates from July, 2012 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • Bartholomew Xerxes Ogilvie, Jr. 10:35 am on 20 July 2012 Permalink | Reply  

    It’s a great story: two armed men try to rob the customers in an Internet cafe, but a 71-year-old man with a concealed-carry permit opens fire on them, sending them falling over themselves as they flee. I don’t know how anybody who hears a story like this can continue to cling to any notion that legal handguns encourage crime.

    However, I’d be interested in Ben’s assessment of the gunmanship of the customer. The security video is a joy to watch; you see one of the thugs threatening the customers, but as soon as he turns his back, the armed customer sees his chance and acts. But I must admit to a bit of unease when I see how close one of the other customers was to the line of fire as he pursued the criminals toward the door. But I have no training and no ability to judge, nor can I argue with the result.

  • Hober Short 1:33 pm on 16 July 2012 Permalink | Reply  

    Seeing an article about the latest gun buyback program being instituted in an urban metropolis where guns practically illegal, I realized that economics tells us why these programs aren’t successful: the price is too low.

    A criminal whose livelihood depends on his gun can’t replace that livelihood with two hundred bucks. When you offer to pay a certain amount for something, the people who will sell to you at that price are those whose utility for that good is less than what you’re offering. And unless you offer the fair market value of a functioning handgun ($400+ retail, more on the black market), you’ll get two classes of results: old broken junk (value: zero dollars) and guns that people don’t want around anymore for whatever reason (value: negative dollars).

    It’s all about utility.

    Edit: also, the term “buyback” implies the guns belonged to the government originally. They really should call them “buyouts.”

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