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Need help from law-enforcement and/or FBI

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by .cheese., May 3, 2007.

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  1. .cheese.

    .cheese. Member

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    Hi all.

    I've gotten an extension on that paper I've been writing (economic analysis of CCW and gun ownership). It means I won't technically get my degree next week, but I'll still "graduate". I don't really mind. I'd rather take the time to write a paper I can be proud of than slap my name on something (especially on this topic) that isn't worth the ink it was printed with....

    I have until August now to write the paper.

    If you happen to be in law enforcement, or in the FBI, or are in any position where you might be able to help me get data so I can work out some statistics - and are willing to help me out.... I'd greatly appreciate it.

    Right now I'm trying to figure out a way to calculate the opportunity cost of not CCW'ing, if it can even be calculated.

    Or if you happen to know of a good source for criminology statistics - please let me know. (aside from the FBI UCRs and other FBI stats on their site)

    Thanks.
     
  2. starboard

    starboard Member

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    And here I was hoping you'd chained yourself to something again but had your laptop within reach. :(
     
  3. .cheese.

    .cheese. Member

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    ha. No.... I'm just chained to my degree... that's all. ;)

    I think it would be best for you to not hope for me to do something dumb again. Once was enough. Lesson was learned.... never again. ;)
     
  4. Pepe Ray

    Pepe Ray Member

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    Economist;
    Your stated goal is befuddeling me.

    Right now I'm trying to figure out a way to calculate the opportunity cost of not CCW'ing, if it can even be calculated.

    If you could give an example of such an "opportunity" it may help us to understand.
    Pepe Ray
     
  5. bogie

    bogie Member

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    formula idea...

    Take hypothesized number of people "saved" by CCW, and multiply it by average estimated earnings/year...

    Lott has GOTTA have something - couldn't hurt to try to contact him...
     
  6. Jeff White

    Jeff White Moderator Staff Member

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    The statistics you are looking for don't exist. No one keeps records of defensive uses of firearms. Incidents where the bad guy is killed by an armed citizen are recorded as justifiable homicide, but that number is surprisingly low, I think it was around 147 for the last year I saw the numbers on.

    Incidents that were ended when the citizen displayed a weapon or even fired shots at a bad guy are not recorded anywhere but in a narrative report that stays with the reporting agency. There are probably thousands of incidents like that that are never even reported to the police.

    I think you'd only calculate the economic cost of no CCW laws by guess work.

    Jeff
     
  7. budney

    budney member

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    I'm not an economist, and I don't play one on TV, but I believe that "opportunity cost" is a property of something one does. It's not exactly a meaningful concept when describing something one doesn't do.

    For example, the "opportunity cost" of carrying is the utility of whatever I would have done with the money spent on holsters, guns, ammo, etc., and whatever I would have done with the time I spent practicing, shopping, waiting in line for a LTCF, etc., and any lifestyle changes to accommodate CCW such as activities missed, friends lost, hassles experienced, etc.

    Perhaps you want to reformulate the question? For example, "What would guns cost in a totally free market?" might be interesting (my suspicion is that decent handguns would be available from Walmart for under $100).

    Or maybe, "In a market with completely privatized security (i.e., no LEOs), what would security cost non-gun-owners versus gun-owners?" If the victims bore the full cost of law enforcement activities on their behalf, there would probably be a substantial discount for gun owners. This can probably be estimated, since statistics are kept on the cost of law enforcement. You can complicate the discussion by factoring in law-enforcement insurance, which would replace the tax-based funding that currently pays for LE.

    You might get useful help on the Austrian Economics Forum. Disclaimer: I'm one of the mods there.

    --Len.
     
  8. .cheese.

    .cheese. Member

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  9. .cheese.

    .cheese. Member

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    how about this instead of a specific question (which makes it confusing)..... anybody know of good data sources for criminology data asides from the FBI site?

    Jeff - I know. That's one of the problems. You can't quantify all the times a gun was just brandished and the threat stopped right there.... or other ways a gun was used without firing it or injuring anybody to stop a threat.

    What I just need right now is good data. I'll probably poke my head into the criminology department and ask around. Plus I have a few friends who are criminology majors (for 4 more days I suppose), so I'll ask them too.

    Also, just to be clear, this isn't about free trade and the manufacturing of firearms or anything like that. This is a more abstract application of economics, although considering that The Economist (the magazine - not me) has its own section for "Gun control" - I guess it's not all THAT abstract.
     
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