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17 September 2007

(Black) Markets in everything

There are few things more bizarre for those of us in the transnational issues side of the intelligence business than to observe the development of new black markets based on government distortions of functioning economies – usually for short sighted political regulation attempting to accomplish what otherwise would be a difficult proposition to sell through free competition.

Many of these illegal markets are driven by burdensome and typically ineffective “environmental” legislation and regulation. One can point to the much lampooned cross border trade in high flush capacity toilets - or to the more serious illegal business of Freon smuggling.

We note a warning scenario for yet another such black market in reaction to overreaching green legislation – this time for the humble incandescent bulb. One commentator at Chronicle of the Conspiracy predicts stockpiling as “some folks will back up the SUV at Wal-Mart and buy cases and cases of the old standby…”

What next, an illicit market in washing machines?

We hear also there may be a new source of machinery and spare parts for phosphate separation (always important for high quality cleaning) on the market soon… seller reports condition, slightly used with occasional catastrophic kinetic damage from falling Israeli iron and energetic materials. Be sure to check the UN trade leads postings for Syria, or contact your local AQ Khan network representative...

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