Monday, August 25, 2014
Philosophy professor Jack Weinstein of the University of North Dakota hosts a blog called PQED or Philosophical Questions Every Day. You may have seen his post on open-carry laws, which went viral over the summer.
Jack is a good friend. And a mighty fine bread maker. But I’m not sure what to make of his current proposal to solve the crisis of unaccompanied minors.
"my proposal is as follows: when refugee children cross the Southern border, instead of meeting them with picket signs and shouting until they are sent home, let’s market them as live-in status symbols. Let’s encourage people to bid for the privilege of giving them a good home. Let’s sell them like we sell water and name brands, and give the foster parents the opportunity to boast about them on Facebook and at cocktail parties. Every kid will have a home and the host families will have a great deed to brag about. It’s a win-win situation."
Jack's post could be seen as an extension of the controversial paper by Elisabeth M. Landes and Richard A. Posner, The Economics of the Baby Shortage, 7 J. Legal Stud. 323 (1978), which considered how changes to the law might "make the existing market in babies for adoption operate more efficiently and more equitably."
While I can’t get behind Jack’s latest public policy recipe, I have to hand it to him for, once again, effectively playing the provocateur.