Optimal product durability (Pakistani markets in everything)

by on July 17, 2012 at 2:53 pm in Economics | Permalink

…many rallies end in the same way: the burning of an American flag.

…The man who dominates much of the supply chain of American flags to religious groups, 30-year-old Mamoon-ur-Rasheed – who’s been publishing anti-American placards and hand-made stars and stripes since his school days, when he was angered by the Clinton administration’s sanctions on Pakistan following its nuclear weapons testing in 1998 – is now remarkably dispassionate about his services, as well as about the short shelf-life of his flammable goods.

“We work hard for our product, and we get paid for our product,” says Rasheed, clad in a camouflage baseball cap and seated behind a desk that takes up most of the space in his eight-by-six-foot office in Gulashan-e-Iqbal, one of the city’s oldest working class neighborhood.

“So what if it burns? The purpose of the flag is to last for an hour. It’s unfortunate, but if the demand is for an hour, then the supplier must meet such demand too,” he says.

The story is here, and for the pointer I thank Jake McGuire.

1 dearieme July 17, 2012 at 3:02 pm

Few countries share the American idolatry of the national flag. So you can be confident that this rigmarole is designed specifically with American sensitivities in mind.

2 Ray Lopez July 17, 2012 at 3:08 pm

Indeed. Free speech should allow flag burning, as well as joking threats against the Chief Executive of the USA, as long as no evil intent is present. But both are sadly federal crimes.

3 Sidewinder July 17, 2012 at 3:25 pm

No they not. Joking about the President will get you a talk with the Secret Service, but neither of those are a crime, at least in the US.

4 dan1111 July 17, 2012 at 4:28 pm

The Wikipedia page on flag desecration (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flag_desecration) suggests that this is not a particularly American issue.

5 mrmandias July 17, 2012 at 6:36 pm

The linked article specifically mentions burning Israeli and Indian flags too.

6 heinz July 17, 2012 at 7:43 pm

I don’t think so. Just to give an example of how other countries feel about desecrating their flag: http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/ciller-turks-will-break-hands-if-flag-touched.aspx?pageID=438&n=ciller-turks-will-break-hands-if-flag-touched-1996-08-16

7 Marian Kechlibar July 18, 2012 at 2:33 am

I wonder why you think so. To the contrary, many countries revere the flag on similar level, if not more.

8 dead serious July 18, 2012 at 9:05 am

I was struck by how many Norwegians display the national flag outside their homes and on their cars.

9 Affe July 17, 2012 at 3:10 pm

Pakistan. Where 1970s Detroit engineers retired.

10 Thor July 17, 2012 at 3:46 pm

True … and funny. But sadly we’re paying a lot of their wages.

11 iamreddave July 17, 2012 at 4:22 pm

markets in everything chess edition

Entrepreneur Challenges Peter Thiel To Million Dollar Chess Game


12 Kelvin July 17, 2012 at 5:13 pm

I particularly enjoy how they’ve literally cut corners, with the reduced number of stars, in order to simplify manufacturing. What better homage to the birthplace of the Model T?

13 Foobarista July 17, 2012 at 5:46 pm

There’s a whole category of items that are built to be burned. Chinese “hell money”, which is to be burned at funerals as a sacrifice, and similar related items (cars, houses, etc) comes to mind.

14 rotary kiln July 17, 2012 at 10:49 pm

What are people saying above?
I love my China.

15 briquette machine July 17, 2012 at 10:52 pm

I know a little about the political things,Everyone love their country,though sometimes their ways are extreme.
l dont’s say any more.

16 jaw crusher July 17, 2012 at 10:53 pm

l agree with you!

17 Crusher July 17, 2012 at 10:54 pm

l’m just passing by.

18 Andrew' July 18, 2012 at 6:00 am

Maybe we need a tax on flag burning. Or maybe we need a tax if you don’t buy fireproof flags.

19 Ryan July 18, 2012 at 10:44 pm

Good point. Non-fireproof flags are a hazard, inefficient much less a pollutant when burning. Legislation needs to pass to raise the standards on flags.

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