Mongolian Gold Rush

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Today's International Herald Tribune has a fascinating story on the 100,000 Mongolians who have left their jobs to scavenge for gold in the country's old state-run mines. Requisite bizarre cultural globalization tie-in:

Called "ninja" because the green plastic tubs they carry on their backs make them look like cartoon Ninja Turtles, they are part of a gold rush that is rocking Mongolia socially, economically and environmentally.

NEXT: From the Ministry of Arias

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  1. Wow.

    Good find.

  2. Very interesting article – thanks for the link, Kerry!

    What’s happening now in Mongolia is very similar to what’s been going on in Brazil, Venezuela and elsewhere in South America for a generation. The Mongolian government is facing the same problems Latin American governments are still grappling with – how do you regain social and political control over such a Wild West scenario? How do you reduce the increasing environmental and social costs without creating widespread political unrest among the independent miners and prospectors? How do you encourage foreign investment in the mining sector without alienating the “Mom-and-Pop” operators already there? There aren’t any cut-and-dried answers, and I hope the Mongolian government can muddle through to some reasonably equitable solution.

  3. You know what that mining town needs?

  4. Clint Eastwood?

  5. Yosemite Sam?

  6. Your guesses are gender-challenged if you ask me.

    Miss Kitty!

  7. You’re way off.

    What they need is a good urban planner.

  8. And how doesn’t that apply to Eastwood? He clears out all the bad guys and restores justice — let’s see you do that in Boston one of these days.

  9. Besides, after a century or so of you urban planners & architects uglifying the world, shouldn’t you just crawl off somewhere to hide in shame & hope nobody finds you?

  10. I’m gonna go way out on a limb and say that, no, the creation of Central Park, the Emerald Necklace, and Balitmore’s Inner Harbout haven’t actually uglified the world, Doug.

    But yeah, Clint Eastwood would make one heck of an Urban Renewal Manager.

  11. And don’t go lumping us in with architects, now.

  12. Ha, I knew that would get under your skin.

    I’ve seen so much urban planned ugliness in my life it almost scares the shit out of me just to see a bulldozer.

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