So, I'm reading the specs of Intel's new i7-6700K processor, and I see that it's "conflict free," meaning "'DRC conflict free', which is defined by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission rules to mean products that do not contain conflict minerals (tin, tantalum, tungsten and/or gold) that directly or indirectly finance or benefit armed groups in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) or adjoining countries."
Are these guys crazy or what? What do I care about some criminal gangs in Africa?
Will the savages really become civilized if denied a little bit of funding? The spirit of conquest and enslavement cannot be pacified by boycotts.
Moreover, to the extent that the "armed groups" mine minerals and sell them on the market, these inhabitants of the Dark Continent are precisely not savage but quite peaceful. They participate in social cooperation by supplying useful items to the world's consumers. This behavior should be encouraged not spurned. The richer the Africans become, the less taste they will retain for destruction.
Besides, it should be easy for a nation whose citizens do business freely with Congo, etc. to buy their minerals (at lower prices due to reduced demand), lie about or conceal their suppliers, and re-sell them to everyone else. American solicitude is vain.
Also notice the hypocrisy, as though the Western nations are exempt from the scourge of the government bending the industry into producing weapons of destruction:
War has become more fearful and destructive than ever before because it is now waged with all the means of the highly developed technique that the free economy has created. Bourgeois civilization has built railroads and electric power plants, has invented explosives and airplanes, in order to create wealth.
Imperialism has placed the tools of peace in the service of destruction. With modern means it would be easy to wipe out humanity at one blow. In horrible madness Caligula wished that the entire Roman people had one head so that he could strike it off. The civilization of the twentieth century has made it possible for the raving madness of the modern imperialists to realize similar bloody dreams. By pressing a button one can expose thousands to destruction. It was the fate of civilization that it was unable to keep the external means that it had created out of the hands of those who had remained estranged from its spirit. ...
Only one external limit is posed to this rage for destruction. In destroying the free cooperation of men, imperialism undercuts the material basis of its power. Economic civilization has forged the weapons for it. In using the weapons to blow up the forge and kill the smith, it makes itself defenseless in the future. The apparatus of the economy based on division of labor cannot be reproduced, let alone extended, if freedom and property have disappeared. It will die out, and the economy will sink back into primitive forms. Only then will mankind be able to breathe more freely. (Nation, State, and Economy, 252)
Is that the aim of the Securities and Exchange Commission? To impoverish Africa to such an extent that they'll revert to swords and spears in their internecine wars?
This is the ultimate of contempt white liberals show to blacks. The Africans must be such half-children, half-devils that there is never even a hope for them to come to control their destructive impulses. There is no other way to a semblance of peace but to cut them off from the world economy so that their power to do harm to each other is also diminished.
Libertarianism, Mises continues,
is rationalistic. It maintains that it is possible to convince the immense majority that peaceful cooperation within the framework of society better serves their rightly understood interests than mutual battling and social disintegration. It has full confidence in man's reason.
It may be that this optimism is unfounded and that the liberals have erred. But then there is no hope left for mankind’s future. (HA, 157)
Are the Africans not listening to reason? Are these people really past redemption?