Once upon a time there was a girl named, Lacey.
Lacey had everything she wanted: Money, fame, looks, and an uncle who would get her anything else she wanted, just as long as she 'behaved'.
It was a perfect life. It was a good life. It was a ficticious life.
Then one day, someone decided that Lacey was not good enough. The changed Lacey. They made her 'different' than she was.
They made her into...
This new version of Lacey was very different than the original Lacey. Lacey's original attributes were gone. All that was good, was corrupted, all that was attractive, well, you know...
The once beautiful, attractive, popular, and bra-less Lacey Underalls was no longer a beautiful flower shining among the thorns.
She had become...
The "doodie" in the pool.
Everyone OUT of the pool.
|Gibson Guitar Raid|
The Lacey Act
What is the U.S. Lacey Act and why is it important?
On May 22, 2008, the U.S. Congress passed a groundbreaking law banning commerce in illegally sourced plants and their products — including timber and wood products. The new law is an amendment to a 100-year-old statute, named the Lacey Act after the Congressman who first championed it. While the Lacey Act has long been one of the most powerful tools for the U.S. agencies fighting wildlife crime, its potential to combat illegal logging remained untapped to date. Now the Lacey Act sets a groundbreaking precedent for the global trade in plants and plant products, acknowledging and supporting other countries’ efforts to govern their own natural resources and putting in place powerful incentives for companies trading in these commodities to do the same.
|Click on this to Expand It|
It isn't just Gibson that is sweating. Musicians who play vintage guitars and other instruments made of environmentally protected materials are worried the authorities may be coming for them next.
If you are the lucky owner of a 1920s Martin guitar, it may well be made, in part, of Brazilian rosewood. Cross an international border with an instrument made of that now-restricted wood, and you better have correct and complete documentation proving the age of the instrument.
Otherwise, you could lose it to a zealous customs agent—not to mention face fines and prosecution.
Consider the recent experience of Pascal Vieillard, whose Atlanta-area company, A-440 Pianos, imported several antique Bösendorfers. Mr. Vieillard asked officials at the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species how to fill out the correct paperwork—which simply encouraged them to alert U.S. Customs to give his shipment added scrutiny.
There was never any question that the instruments were old enough to have grandfathered ivory keys. But Mr. Vieillard didn't have his paperwork straight when two-dozen federal agents came calling.
Facing criminal charges that might have put him in prison for years, Mr. Vieillard pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor count of violating the Lacey Act, and was handed a $17,500 fine and three years probation.
For more detail of the impact of the Lacey Act, please click HERE for the excellent article by Eric Felten referenced above.
Who supported the 2008 Amendment of the 100+ year old Lacey Act?
The usual suspects.
Oh, and it's nice to know that the United Steelworkers and International Brotherhood of Teamsters are so concerned about the environment...
You know, because they're so GREEN.
Bottom Line? If you own a guitar, piano, picture frame, walking stick, chess set, George Washington's wooden teeth, or anything else made of organic materials for which you do not have a Bill of Materials? Don't cross state lines, or attempt to travel internationally.
Even if it's been in your family for generations, it may end up living in a locked vault somewhere run with care by the U.S. Department the Interior's Fish and Wildlife's Department and you'll be taking a trip to the bank to get funding for anywhere between $250 and $250,000.
Maybe the Green Movement folks are correct? Maybe we shouldn't drive ANYWHERE? It could be very expensive.
Have a nice weekend folks, leave your wooden nickels at home this Labor Day Weekend...
Your Federal Government Department of the Interior, the proverbial "Doodie" in the pool.
Eat Up America!!!