Wednesday, 22 February 2012

92% of US Archaeologists and 11%of Coineys Support Purchase of Stolen Artefacts?

The recent text of coin-dealer-investigative-journalist Richard Giedroyć in Krause Publications' "World Coin News" discussed above is publicising some wild claims. Although the text ('[US] Import Restrictions Declared 'Extra Legal'), was about a Jan. 7 meeting of the ACCG held during the New York International Numismatic Convention (you know, the one where the recent arrest took place), there was other information presented by Wayne Sayles. He claims huge support for his actions, he says that the ACCG now has 793 individual members as well as 21 affiliated clubs that represent approximately 5,000 additional collectors (that's 21 groups of 240 members each). Concerning the ACCG policies which all these people support, very telling was Giedroyć's statement:
The ACCG opposes all coin import restrictions.
Now as any reader will know, the CCPIA (on the basis of which the imports of certain artefacts are restricted) imposes them only on items without documentation (three types are an option) of lawful export from the source country. That is US law and has been since the CCPIA was passed back in the 1980s. Now coineys want to change this law - presumably then to allow the import of ancient coins and other artefacts into the USA without any kind of documentation of legal export. Are there really 50 US coin collecting clubs whose members fully support the purchase of illegally exported material?

A more important figure however is what Sayles was apparently careful not to say. There are estimated to be 50000 collectors of ancient coins in the US; where is the voice of the other 45000? Can we assume that they too want to buy stolen and smuggled coins, or are they not affiliated to the ACCG because they DO NOT want more stolen and smuggled coins on the US market?

Five thousand US coineys for the looters and smugglers, forty-five thousand against? That would be 11% for and 89% against, isn't it?

Giedroyć however comes up with an even more surprising statistic about the import into the US of coins without documentation of legal export:
The archaeologists who favor a full ban on the import of such coins is a minority, according to Sayles. He noted that at a recent hearing only eight percent of archaeologists favored coins being named among future import restriction laws now being considered by the U.S. State Department.
It is not clear from this (it's written for coineys after all, why provide detail?) what "meeting" is being referred to here. But Sayles is claiming that 92% of US archaeologists are behind him in his drive to get public acceptance of the trade in antiquities which have not been lawfully exported from the foreign source countries. Ninety two percent of US archaeologists behind the ACCG? Really? If that is the case, why the incessant series of attacks on "archaeology" and "archaeologists" from the ACCG if they are the allies of the coiney anti-gubn'mint movement?

But let us note what Sayles is effect claiming. In a context of a possible only 11% of Coineys actively supporting the purchase of stolen and smuggled artefacts, Sayles would like us to believe that 92% of US Archaeologists support it. Now, if that were true, THAT would be something for the ACCG lapdog numismo-journalists to write about!


Paul Zoetbrood said...

One of the first rules I learned at university stdies: quote your sources; make sure numbers quoted are substantiated.
I can't find any reference, but must assume these relate to the number of responses to the latest CPIAA hearings?
If so, any sane person should know that the number of respondrd / not-responses should be taken in account.

I know Paul,
Coineys and collectors are not good at reading (or reckoning), but this is overly gross..

Paul Barford said...

The figures refer to the 2011/12 CPAC comments on the Cyprus renewal:

of course citing the source would have revealed that the figures have been misinterpreted.

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