We're absolutely certain that this coltan, blood minerals, problem has already been solved. I mean didn't they pass a law about it, something that was to solve the point?
House of Cards star Robin Wright has launched a campaign with Congolese and American activists to end the pillage of Congo’s vast mineral resources and break the cycle of devastating wars that have claimed more than five million lives.
The campaign will target US tech companies and political leaders in an attempt to push for greater transparency in the mining of so-called “conflict minerals” such as coltan that have aggravated the violence in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Wright has produced and narrated a new film, When Elephants Fight, to be shown in 50 university campuses around the US as part of what she and her fellow campaigners hope will become a movement for reform under the banner#StandWithCongo.
Dodd Frank included a section about this. Backed by the Enough Project and Global Witness we were told that if all American listed companies had to list whether they were using conflict minerals or not then this would drive said conflict minerals out of the supply chain.
We have been somewhat dismissive of this claim here and elsewhere. But of course we were shouted down, the law was passed and it has come into effect. The SEC itself estimated the costs of this law at $4 billion (yes, $4,000,000,000) in just the first year. We said it wouldn't work and that it was a very expensive way of not dealing with the point to boot. We might even have made the point that a division of Marines would be a cheaper and more effective solution.
Apparently we were right, at least according to campaigners on this issue we were right. and yet their conclusion is to do more of what has provenly not worked.
What was that Einstein quote again? As, yes: "Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results."
Is it too much to ask that we have a little less insanity in public policy?