Senegal President Wants Royalty On Tourist Trap He Built

from the something's-not-right-here dept

While some may point out that the bigger issue in this story may be ego, hubris or (perhaps) corruption, the story of Senegal's President Abdoulaye Wade, and his $27 million statue has a ridiculous intellectual property twist, as well. Apparently, Wade had the government spend $27 million on a statue with a "heroic" pose -- this is a country where the per capita yearly income seems to be in the low four figures (CIA Factbook says $1,600). Approximately half of the country lives in poverty. So, clearly, what they need is a giant expensive statue. But the IP angle is that Wade is claiming, since the statue was his idea, he, personally, should receive 35% of any tourism revenue, as a royalty. So, just to get this straight -- he appears to have used a bunch of taxpayer money to spend millions on a statue -- and he wants to personally get a huge cut of all tourist revenue. And while this may be driven by corruption, it's the sort of concept that would only occur to someone in a world where such "ownership" and demands for royalties after an idea is put in place are commonplace.


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  1.  
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    ..., Oct 8th, 2009 @ 6:34am

    wtf?

    Note: Senegal contains no volcanoes.

     

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  2.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 8th, 2009 @ 6:59am

    He only wants 35%? That isn't bad for his part of the world.

     

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  3.  
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    Dark Helmet (profile), Oct 8th, 2009 @ 7:04am

    Okay, a question and stipulation:

    "he, personally, should receive 35% of any tourism revenue, as a royalty"

    Question: Uh, how many people, once they've managed to scrounge up enough cash to take a vacation, choose Senegal?

    "Approximately half of the country lives in poverty. So, clearly, what they need is a giant expensive statue."

    Stipulation: Well, to be fair, the statue DID cost $27 Million to build...so maybe it's made of caviar and fine cheeses and the citizens can take off huge chunks of it and haul the President's fishy cheese head back to the village and feast on it for days.

    Or, hey, maybe the statue actually gives reach arounds as well! Nothing staves off chronic hunger pangs like a fishy cheese handy, know what I'm sayin'?

     

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  4.  
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    Ima Fish (profile), Oct 8th, 2009 @ 7:11am

    Re:

    Agreed, 35% of zero is still zero.

     

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  5.  
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    Danny (profile), Oct 8th, 2009 @ 7:42am

    President Abdoulaye Wade == skank

     

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  6.  
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    interval, Oct 8th, 2009 @ 7:46am

    Re:

    He's acting like any third-world dictator. Funny thing is he seems to have been elected, in what by all accounts appear to have been legitimate elections.

     

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  7.  
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    Free Capitalist (profile), Oct 8th, 2009 @ 7:47am

    And while this may be driven by corruption, it's the sort of concept that would only occur to someone in a world where such "ownership" and demands for royalties after an idea is put in place are commonplace.


    Agreed, and would add the fact that he is an overt tyrant makes him no more or less morally justified than his "free" industry counterparts who are also demanding money for nothing. He's really just giving his "thumbs-up" to the whole concept.

     

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  8.  
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    wile e. coyote, Oct 8th, 2009 @ 7:55am

    Sometimes...

    I'm not a violent person (except toward a certain genus of flightless bird), but I think there are some folks who should have an anvil dropped on their heads.

     

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  9.  
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    RR, Oct 8th, 2009 @ 7:56am

    Was thinking of a certain pc game when saw this headline...

    Evil Genius, anyone? Tourist traps?

     

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  10.  
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    tracker1 (profile), Oct 8th, 2009 @ 8:09am

    Here's an idea..

    A 35% tax on tourism to cover the cost of the statue.. after 27 million, then the president can have his share. Of course being the government owns said statue, they owe precisely 0% in royalties, as the government can't be sued unless they allow it.

     

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    mjb5406 (profile), Oct 8th, 2009 @ 8:15am

    That's the Way of Senegal

    Several years ago, I flew Delta to South Africa to visit my now-wife... there was a refuelling stop in Dakar, Senegal. It took 4 hours. Why? Because the Senegalese government insisted on "inspecting" every inch of the plane for contraband and, supposedly, weapons. Workers came onto the plane and searched every nook and cranny... carry-on bags had to be opened by their owners, even the seat back pouches were turned inside-out... evidently the vomit bags could be used to stage a coup. I found out afterwards that it was the "price we paid" for the privilege of landing in Senegal and also found out that Delta paid a hefty sum to the government, too. It was a torturous 4 hour stay on the tarmac... we had to stay on the plane. Delta has since stopped using Dakar, Senegal for its refuelling stop.

     

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  12.  
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    haiku, Oct 8th, 2009 @ 8:55am

    Wondering where the $27 million came from ?

    That's an easy one to answer: from the US/EU/etc aid to Senegal.

    And, unfortunately, that doesn't only apply to Senegal - that applies to most of Africa.

     

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  13.  
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    ChurchHatesTucker (profile), Oct 8th, 2009 @ 10:41am

    Re: Sometimes...

    Roadrunners are actually flighted birds.

    (Yeah, I know. It's my internet OCD. Just roll with it)

     

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    harbingerofdoom (profile), Oct 8th, 2009 @ 10:51am

    never knew there was a place called senegal, let alone a president of it...


    (rough tv quote in case you were wondering)

     

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    Daemon_ZOGG (profile), Oct 8th, 2009 @ 12:04pm

    Oh, here's an idea...

    He can pay the citizens of Senegal 35% revenue for every tourist that pisses on his statue. And double for every tourist that craps on his stupid, rediculous statue. It's a shame that the people of Senegal have such a moronic jerk for a leader.
    I have to agree with Wile E. Coyote on this one.. with one exception..
    Looser President Abdoulaye Wade needs to have an anvil dropped on his B...ls, then on his head. Thrown out of the palace and stoned by his own people. Now that would be funny to watch on youtube.com...MMWAH-HAH-HAH-HAAAH!

    ;)

     

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  16.  
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    Dan, Oct 8th, 2009 @ 3:15pm

    Damn! Now I have to change my plans again.

     

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  17.  
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    Morpheus, Jun 2nd, 2010 @ 5:51pm

    Ok as as a Senegalese citizen let me tell you this guy is twisted. He is 90 years old of age for f*** sake.
    He proposed the whole entire population of Haiti to move to Senegal after the earthquake lol...

     

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