Thursday, 30 June 2016

You Can Turn this DISASTER Around - do it now

If nothing else (and there is much else), the UK leaving the EU in response to some populists whipping up public anger, provoking a 'protest vote' will damage efforts to preserve the European archaeological and historical heritage. In six days Britain has become the laughing stock of the world. See here: I am not accepting any comments on this post unless they concern portable antiquity collecting or heritage issues connected with EU membership and/or withdrawal. If not about that, please take it elsewhere.

Shopkeeper Evasion, Dead Pigs, Ancient Coins and Cowboys

It was still yesterday in America when I was today labelled (Wednesday, June 29, 2016 What the Collecting Community is really Up Against) an "archaeomaniac" (sic). Why? It's because of my allegedly "true ultra-Socialist, or perhaps actually Communist" idea that anybody who wants to claim that the goods he is selling are licit, should be able to demonstrate that. A "revolutionary" idea it seems for some shopkeepers.
This is an overt demand for proof of licit origin, with a declaration that any artifact for which documented proof of licit origin is not available is to be presumed to be illicit.
Yes, an overt declaration that if Mr Welsh sells me half a pig for my freezer which he got from a bloke with a truckload of them in a Walmart carpark, he'd better have the health certificates that indicate that meat is not infected. Otherwise I'm not buying. I don't trust coin dealers with paperless  dead pigs or anything else.
Let's be clear about this: If [these] ideas are accepted, even more stringent burdens of proof would fall upon collectors than this new German law dares to impose upon German collectors.
("dares"?) Note that, collectors get lumbered with the costs of their own carelessness here. If a dealer ("trust me") can con a collector into buying things without paperwork these days, sooner or later a collector at the end of the chain is going to find themselves lumbered with duff goods which they can do nothing with. But this is not "Mr Barford's fault", it is the fault of stupid collectors buying stuff no-questions asked. Collectors should read the 1970 (1970 that's 46 years ago, 'Nam days) Convention on the Means of Prohibiting and Preventing the Illicit Import, Export and Transfer of Ownership of Cultural Property- start with article 10 and wonder why US dealers have for all those years fallen short of the standards it sets. Ask yourself why they have failed to even make a start in all those long years to live up to the standards of transparency that ethical and responsible trade in such a commodity requires. How many artefacts in that time have passed through and been systematically "orphaned" from their true collecting histories in the US market alone? Why? Ask yourself.

Dealer Dave however does not actually address that issue, preferring instead to veer off into personal attack, questioning my "credentials"  (I think he feels one can write poetry without being a poet, or technical papers without being a technical writer), being simultaneously a "caped crusader" (Cf Sayles' "Space Cadets" junk) and allegedly a "Communist" with allegedly "a past to hide", but then rather illogically he compares me to Rudolf Hess [who, as far as I know was not a communist].
this almost indecipherable man who apparently wishes to become an "Archaeological Eichmann" who ferociously exterminates collectors. 
I think it is pretty clear from that that Mr Welsh has absolutely nothing substantive to say about the matter of transparency in the antiquities trade.  

Vignette: Some dead pig dealers are unable to supply buyers with certificates of health for their goods. I would advise not to buy anything from anyone who's not got the proper paperwork showing licit origins.  That is not being the "enemy of all butchers" just those that want to conduct cowboy businesses with zero transparency and accountibility.


"What the Collecting Community is really Up Against"

Actually, "What the Collecting Community is really Up Against" is the obstructive attitudes of the dealers they buy from who encourage the persistence of the same attitudes, denial and evasion ion the collecting communities. Once collectors mature enough to start thinking for themselves, the dealers will be forced to change their tune - and their business model. Thinking collectors, now there's a thing.

Wednesday, 29 June 2016

Shopkeeper lies (Antiquity Dealers, eh?)

The Californian coinshop keeper who imagines that entitles him to the label "professional numismatist" like Al Bundy was a professional chiropodist clearly cannot understand plain English (perhaps he needs a teacher). He writes:
Both Tompa and I have previously discussed the "actual text" of this legislation in detail. The detailed openPetition analysis thereof was quite clear in its devastating indictment of the unfairness of this legislation to German collectors and dealers.
The petition was based on a text which was at least two redraftings earlier than the version passed several days ago by the Bundestag. There is no link in either the text of Dealer Dave or that of Bailey and Ehrenberg's  Tompa to the current version they are (allegedly) "discussing". If they are indeed discussing the actual text of the document, then they should cite it to show us that they are not making it up when they and their fellows accuse it of being both "socialist" and "Nazi"' I say they are, let them prove otherwise with reference to specific articles of the current text. Go on then. Unlike Fascist-Communist states in  Myth-Yurope, the Enlightened and United States of America of course grants full ownership rights to everything under the sun,... well, unless its items on their OWN extensive sanctions list of exports which are controlled. So what does this make them, then Dealer Dave? 

Do you understand the term "actual text"? 

"Respectable" Dealers

Dealer Dave has no objections to me calling him a shopkeeper because to consider the label as in any way demeaning would be "effete, antiquated snobbery" which allegedly "means nothing at all in the USA".
Being a well-known dealer in ancient coins with an award-winning website seems to me to be at least as "socially respectable" as being....
...the proprietor of a Manhattan antiquities gallery with charisma and who wears bespoke tailored suits to sell in opulent surroundings, high end objects often with some kind of collecting history attached to them? Does Mr Welsh claims equality with the Aboutaams? "Award winning" or not, there are, it seems, shopkeepers but also suave gallery owners in the same industry.

In fact, there is nothing at all "respectable" or even respect-worthy about dealers in so-called 'minor'  antiquities who rely for their profits on the acquisition, no doubt at some low unit cost, of goods which have no paperwork verifying licit origins (objects with paperwork apparently command higher prices), which are then sold to careless collectors, no questions asked. A respectable dealer will deal only in objects where he or she can demonstrate licit origins. "They can't touch you for it-legitimacy" is no legitimacy at all. So I invite readers to examine Dealer Dave's atavistic "award winning website" to see what they think that award was for if not for the presentation of collecting histories.

More Fundamentalists Destroying Archaeological Monuments

Jehovah’s Witnesses have been accused of vandalizing a 7,000-year-old archaeological site in eastern Mexico  in an effort to stamp out “Devil worship.”
The sect targeted the ancient ceremonial area because it was “not Christian” and destroyed “at least a dozen” stone altars built by the indigenous Otomi people at the San Bartolo Tutotepec archeological site, according to TeleSur TV. Members of the sect say the destruction was motivated by a belief that the ancient indigenous religion involved devil worship. The perpetrators claim that they were following the word of God by destroying the temple site. The Otomi people still hold the site sacred .
"Christian group vandalizes ancient Mexican site claiming it’s linked to ‘Devil worship’" DeadState June 28, 2016

The False Binary about ISIL looting

Amr AL-Azm on the fallacy of the "[Good collector] buying stuff to save it from destruction" trope.

The ADCAEA and Peter Tompa are believed to be working on a refutation of that statement. It may take a bit of time coming out.

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