Everardo Leon

February 22, 2005

Economics 12

Professor Foldvary


The Fruit and the Meat

A Story about Tariff and Quotas


Once upon a time, even before dinosaurs existed, there were two islands in the ocean.  An interesting fact about these islands was that both had the same dollar currency. Paradise Island was abundant in fruits such as mangoes, bananas, and pineapples.  Each year the island would celebrate the Fruit Festival as a sign of joy for having these tasty goods.  On the other hand, Buffalo Island was abundant on animals such as cows, goats, and sheep.  Similarly, Buffalo Island hosted their yearly celebration called the Marrow Festival, which lasted for an entire week.  Each island thought they were the only ones in existence, but the unexpected happened.

One day seven year old Diana and Diego from Paradise Island learned how to make hats from bamboo sticks.  They were so excited that they decided to teach their fellow friends how to make hats.  Everyday they would play along the seashore with their new hats and they would take a fruit for a snack.  On a windy day while playing tag on the seashore, Diana and Diego decided to put their mango on top of their hats to protect it from the wind.  All of the sudden a small wave took their hats into the deep sea away from Paradise Island.

The next morning, Maria and Miguel from Buffalo Island found two hats along the shore.  Both notice yellow rocks lying on each hat and were afraid to touch it.  They had never seen such object.  Both reached for the mangoes and immediately noticed its sweet smell.  Due to its softness, Miguel decided to take a bite from the mango and tasted its sweetness.  Buffalo Island was not abundant in fruits and the people had no idea that it existed.  Seeing how Miguel started to eat the mango desperately, Maria also decided to take a bite.  Maria decided not to finish the entire mango because she wanted to show her mom what she had found.  Miguel and Maria’s mom, Mrs. Steak was the president of the island at the time, which made things more interesting.

Maria entered her house and gave the fruit to her mom.  Mrs. Steak was delighted of tasting such sweetness and asked her daughter, “Where did you find this?” Maria told her mom she found it along the shore.  Mrs. Steak immediately blew into her shell, which served as an emergency town meeting.  The reason for the meeting was to inform her people that they were not alone.  About hundred and fifty people gathered outside her house in a matter of minutes and Mrs. Steak came out with the mango on her hand.  Mrs. Steak told the island about the mango her daughter had found.  People looked worried and were scared about knowing that other people existed besides them.

The next week Mrs. Steak and the island decided to build a boat using some of the trees.  The island came to an agreement of finding were this fruit had come from.  Mrs. Steak decided to join a crew of ten men and after the boat was finished, it would departure on the blue sea.  After spending half a day on the boat, they started to notice palm trees and a sweet smell.  The sweet smell was due to the Fruit Festival Paradise Island was celebrating.  As the boat approached the island, people started to run away and chaos erupted.  Only the president and the council from Paradise Island stood along the shore and waited for the boat, despite their intense fear.

Mrs. Steak stepped down from the boat and the president from Paradise Island, Mr. Sweet, noticed the mango and a hat on her hand.  Mr. Sweet took the initiative and yelled, “Who are you and what do you want?” Mrs. Steak and her crew stood there and froze for a moment as they realized the beauty of the place.  From far away Diana and Diego also noticed the hat and their mango.  Mrs. Steak answered after a couple minutes, “We want to know where this object came from.” Mr. Sweet answered, “This belongs to our island, how did you find it?” “My children found it along the shore back at home,” she answered.  Mrs. Steak started to approach Mr. Sweet in order to talk to him without yelling.  Noticing that Mrs. Steak was a nice lady, Mr. Sweet also approached her until both of them were face to face.

As they started to talk with each other, her crew and the people of the island were starting to get worried.  After a couple of minutes, Mr. Sweet went back to his people and asked them to come out and not be afraid.  Everyone came out and gathered around the president.  Mr. Sweet mentioned to them, “Mrs. Steak is the president of Buffalo Island and she wants part of our fruit, especially our mangoes.” Diana’s mom asked immediately, “What would we get in return?” Mrs. Steak approached the crowd along with her crew because she wanted to know what was going on.  Mr. Sweet turned to Mrs. Steak and asked her, “If we give some of our fruit what would you give us?” Mrs. Steak without hesitance took out a piece of meat she carried inside her bag and gave it to Mr. Sweet.  He had never seen such object and asker her, “What is this?” Mrs. Steak told him that her island had lots meat and made her people grow strong.  Mr. Sweet took a bite and he liked the taste.  He gave some to Diana’s mom, who was the Vice-President, and she also liked the meat.  Then the agreement came between both islands.

Paradise and Buffalo Island decided to trade their goods but with an exception.  Since both islands did not want to run out of goods, they decided to put a limit on the amount of goods they could trade.  Paradise Island decided to send forty mangoes to Buffalo Island each month, while Buffalo Island would send 40 pounds of meat on a monthly basis.  The limitation was not enough for both islands and they decided to put a price on their goods.  For forty mangoes, Buffalo Island agreed to pay forty dollars plus an extra ten dollars.  Paradise Island had to pay forty dollars plus an extra twenty dollars on the forty pounds of meat, since it was more costly for Buffalo Island to prepare the meat.  Once the agreement was done, Mrs. Steak stayed for the festival and enjoyed tasting other fruits in the island.

After a couple of years both islands enjoyed themselves from these goods and it brought several benefits.  The life expectancy from both islands increased to about eighty years old and people had better health conditions.