Thursday, November 19, 2009

Why exactly did Nicholas Cage, better known for his acting than his serving as United Nation's Ambassador on Drugs and Crime, need to go to Kenya to visit with jailed Somali pirates in order to figure out why they were pirates?

Let's see, people turn to crime - which includes piracy - if (1) they determine the risk/reward of criminal behavior is better than the alternatives available to them, and (2) they have no moral compass to deter them from doing something in their financial best interests.

So my guess is that these pirates told Cage that they had no other prospects that presented them with the same economic benefits and that they didn't figure there was much of a chance of getting caught and jailed (or blown out of the water by US Navy Seals).

There is also the possibility that jail is a step up for some of these criminals, that they're better fed and sheltered than if they stayed in Somali, thus making them even less fearful of the consequences of being caught. An easy solution to this is to lower the living standards for jailed criminals, making their lives more miserable than if they stayed home and out of trouble. An even easier solution is to summarily execute anyone caught engaging in piracy, thus providing would-be pirates with a much lower reward/risk ratio.

Another question: most ambassadors are ambassadors to some PLACE. Where exactly can one find 'Drugs and Crime' on a map? Does the United Nations have an ambassador to recreation? to shopping?