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jst5150
02-23-2006, 12:53 AM
Fantastic article from "The Atlantic" on how the diamond cartels formed and why all that shiny shiny bling bling is so valuable. (Added: This is an AMAZINg article. Highly recommended. Long articlke but well worth the read!)

http://www.theatlantic.com/doc/198202/diamond

Here's a snippet:



Except for those few stones that have been destroyed, every diamond that has been found and cut into a jewel still exists today and is literally in the public's hands. Some hundred million women wear diamonds, while millions of others keep them in safe-deposit boxes or strongboxes as family heirlooms. It is conservatively estimated that the public holds more than 500 million carats of gem diamonds, which is more than fifty times the number of gem diamonds produced by the diamond cartel in any given year. Since the quantity of diamonds needed for engagement rings and other jewelry each year is satisfied by the production from the world's mines, this half-billion-carat supply of diamonds must be prevented from ever being put on the market. The moment a significant portion of the public begins selling diamonds from this inventory, the price of diamonds cannot be sustained. For the diamond invention to survive, the public must be inhibited from ever parting with its diamonds.

Jenny
02-23-2006, 04:18 AM
Very interesting article - makes me feel better about not liking diamonds, too.

Kind of on-topic, would anyone happen to know of articles/books written by people who've been part of the gem trade around Afghanistan?

toastyreward
02-23-2006, 10:17 PM
Saw this post and it reminded me of a National Geographic artilce I read about two years ago. It was on the diamond trade and the violence involved. i.e. blood diamonds. Anyway, after I read it, the stones didn't look so pretty.

Steven Pollack
03-06-2006, 06:30 PM
I have experience in the jewelry trade as a goldsmith and jewelry store owner of 14 years.

PM me if you need more information for a book.

Steve

Jenny
03-07-2006, 04:21 AM
Hi Steven

Thanks for the offer of expert info, but at the moment it's only vulgar curiosity and the vague suspicion of an idea for a romantic suspense novel. The idea started when I was talking to a guy who'd bought some of the gems he sold from fleeing Afghans a few years ago. I'd overlooked the fact jewellery for many people is their portable, last-resort bank account. Looking at my (costume) jewellery collection, that means I'd starve tomorrow.

Jenny