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Wed Dec 26, 2012, 01:23 PM

gun violence control through mandatory liability insurance and taxation - from Forbes [View all]

I find the intersection of economics and other disciplines fascinating, like endocrinology and neuro-economics. In this instance, the author proposes a means by which the invisible hand of the markets might help contribute to the reduction of gun violence.

I think the idea of mandatory requirements for liability insurance for firearms, the way we require it for automobiles, is an excellent solution to a range of problems, including losses from injury and from property damage.

This particular author includes an aspect of taxation in conjunction with liability insurance while referencing social economics sources which make it of particular interest in how financial policy affects our lives.

From Forbes:

Newtown's New Reality: Using Liability Insurance to Reduce Gun Deaths


We are all mourning now. Children should not be murdered in their classrooms. They shouldn’t be afraid that their teacher will be shot, as my 12-year-old daughter worries. Schools should not become armed camps. Many of the low-hanging fruit approaches seem like no-brainers: Ban assault weapons, gun-show sales, multiple-ammo clips and require longer, more stringent background checks.
For the record: I’m not of the mind that every gun-owner is a threat to society nor should we restrict gun use for hunters, collectors and target shooters. My father owns guns, I have shot guns many times, have known people who were murdered by guns and witnessed a police shooting in 1981.

But I don’t think a widespread seizure of some 300 million American weapons will ever work. In fact, just mention “gun control,” and the very phrase shuts down conversation and invokes the vague rights and curse of the second amendment. Challenges to the constitution would never make it through the Roberts court, anyway.

What we can do is to look at gun sales through the lens of social economics. Market-based risk pricing is the partial answer. Let’s agree that guns as weapons are inherently dangerous to society and owners should bear the risk and true social costs. Translation: Require both owners and sellers to purchase liability insurance that is universally underwritten by actuaries according to relative risk.

Given that gun violence, which kills more than 30,000 Americans annually, is harmful not only to our well being, but our economy, we should use economic disincentives to regulate its use.


read more here: http://www.forbes.com/sites/johnwasik/2012/12/17/newtowns-new-reality-using-liability-insurance-to-reduce-gun-deaths/

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