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Pay as you go

Reader comment on item: In Iraq, Stay the Course - but Change It

Submitted by Darryl Davis (United States), Oct 28, 2006 at 12:44

Pay As You Go

Ancient Nordic law was based on fines. For example: gouge a person's eye out, you must pay him 3 gold pieces; biting a nose off would be just one gold piece. This system cooled down pre-Christian behavior by making a person think about actions having consequences beyond satisfaction.

Fines could influence bad behavior in Iraq. Hypothetical examples for contemplation and discussion:

If a Shia is evicted (i.e. threatened with death if they stay) because of living in a Sunni area, they report this to the government and leave. On leaving, ownership of the real estate reverts to the government. Its value, with respect to the person fleeing, is as of when the threat was received. The refugee gets $40,000 immediately from the government for moving expenses. When the house can be looked at, the refugee gets money from the government that is equal to the value of the house when the threat was received. After the government divides up money from oil sales, both the money from the moving expenses and the money for the house are deducted from the Sunni share.

If a car bomb blows up in a Sunni market and kills 10 people, then the heirs of each dead person divide $200,000. The money comes out of the Shia share of the oil sales.

If a roadside bomb kills a coalition soldier, the soldier's heirs get $200,000. If the bomb is probably one of those from the Iran, then the money the heirs receive is deducted from the impounded Iranian money.

If the bomb is not one of those mentioned above, then the neighborhood character will determine where the money comes from. If the site is a Shia neighborhood, for example, the $200,000 comes from the Shia share of oil sales. If the neighborhood is undetermined or mixed, then the money is deducted equally from the Shia and the Sunni.

Submitting....

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Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

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