Friday, December 26, 2008

A Pirate's Life

Every business is the expression of the human will to survive.

Where there are no legal businesses, illegal ones will have to do. Consider the success of Somali pirates.

"While their countrymen face the threat of famine, pirates in northern Somalia are building houses, buying cell phones and SUVs, giving relatives hundreds of dollars and winning the attention of beautiful women, who seem to be flocking to the area from miles around."

Healthy societies make it possible for men to support themselves and their families without violating the rights of others. The best way to reduce crime is to make behaving well more rewarding than behaving badly. That happy state of affairs begins with legally enforceable property rights. Where there are no property rights, only the most violent will dare own property. Violence offers the only reward.

When behaving well equals starvation, it comes as no surprise that desperate humans are drawn to violence, especially when it pays so well.  As one Somali taxi driver said, "The pirates are the hottest men in town," he said. "Girls from all over Somalia moved here to marry pirates. But if the girl isn't cute, she's out of luck, because the pirates only go with beautiful girls."

No comments: