George misses the point again

Today it\’s all about blood minerals.

There are dozens of issues, such as starvation wages, bullying, abuse and 60-hour weeks in the sweatshops manufacturing them, the debt bondage into which some of the workers are pressed, the energy used, the hazardous waste produced. But I will concentrate on just one: are the components soaked in the blood of people from the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo? For 17 years, rival armies and militias have been fighting over the region\’s minerals. Among them are metals critical to the manufacture of electronic gadgets, without which no smartphone would exist: tantalum, tungsten, tin and gold.

And the thing is this is a problem that is largely solved. No, not through Dodd Frank either, but through the industry itself. Here.

Sorry, to say that it is \”solved\” is too extreme. We\’ve already put in motion all the things that need to be put into motion to solve it. It\’s a complex problem that takes some time to deal with. But all those things are being done.

It\’s been years since you could sell tantalum containing materials to processors without proving that it did not come from conflict areas in hte DRC. To anyone other than the Chinese processors that is. Cabot, Starck etc simply won\’t purchase without the necessary proof of sourcing. Tungsten and tin are very similar. You can\’t just rock up with some ore these days. Gold is its own problem as there are just so many ways that you can introduce material into the recycling chain that it\’s quite simply a problem that never will get solved.

My point being that the best that can be done is already being done.

8 comments on “George misses the point again

  1. This and other posts are not appearing on your front page. Last one is ‘Green lefty…’ Got here via Guido’s link to the Carina Trimingham squib.

  2. Likewise.

    I’m stuck back on a comment on Ritchie quite a few days ago.

    Tim adds: Clear your cache, should work.

  3. Cleared my cache a few days ago, now stuck on your post from a few days ago. I’m not going to bother visiting if I have to clear the cache every sodding time . Please sort this out it has been going on for some time.

    “Standard Libertarian Clause” – you are of course welcome to lose readers if you prefer.

  4. Ctrl F5 refreshes the screen and brings the latest posts. Saves having to clear the cache (which didn’t work for me anyway).

  5. Pick a side in the DRC war, (toss a coin if you like), and buy ‘blood stuff’ from only that faction, then sell them loads of arms.

    After a while they’ll win the war and much of the bloodshed will cease. Result; everybody happy.

  6. “To anyone other than the Chinese processors that is.”

    And the Singaporeans. Which is the point that George does not notice – as the West declines both relatively and absolutely, our ability to support George-s favourite quasi-religious campaigns will also decline. If the Chinese do not give a damn about Indian tigers or African elephants, how does George think they will survive? They do not care about conflict minerals either so he is essentially wasting his time.

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