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Balanced Fare: We Report, You Deride

Wednesday, July 30, 2003

If They Can't Be Bothered To Read Their Own Paper, Why Should We?

The NY Times editors fulminate on the subject of the proposed Pentagon futures market on terror (links), with their emphasis added to mine:

The insensitivity of the idea boggles the mind. Quite apart from the tone-deafness of equating terrorist attacks with, say, corn futures, the plan would allow speculators — even terrorists — to profit from anonymous bets on future attacks.

And from yesterday's original NY Times story, we learn:

According to descriptions given to Congress, available at the Web site and provided by the two senators, traders who register would deposit money into an account similar to a stock account and win or lose money based on predicting events.

...The initiative, called the Policy Analysis Market, is to begin registering up to 1,000 traders on Friday.

Well, if terrorists want to phone up the Pentagon and register themselves, I am not sure that I am opposed to it. The NY Times position is clear.

UPDATE: The Pentagon Papers. This is the DARPA doc, with the futures program described on p 68-9 of the .pdf file.

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