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Expensive insurance

November 21, 2015

Here’s an interesting post at Tyler Cowen’s Marginal Revolution:

Can this be true?

Between 1989 and 2010, U.S. attorneys seized an estimated $12.6 billion in asset forfeiture cases. The growth rate during that time averaged +19.4% annually. In 2010 alone, the value of assets seized grew by +52.8% from 2009 and was six times greater than the total for 1989. Then by 2014, that number had ballooned to roughly $4.5 billion for the year, making this 35% of the entire number of assets collected from 1989 to 2010 in a single year. According to the FBI, the total amount of goods stolen by criminals in 2014 burglary offenses suffered an estimated $3.9 billion in property losses. This means that the police are now taking more assets than the criminals [emphasis added].

That is from Martin Armstrong, via Noah Smith and Michael Hendrix. While private sector robberies are underreported by a considerable amount, this is nonetheless a startling contrast.

This seems to be the source for Cowen’s post.

I have no idea whether this is true. But if it is then police protection is turning into pretty expensive insurance, eh?

Via CoyoteBlog

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