Re: true abundance?

From: Damien Broderick (
Date: Mon Jan 29 2001 - 22:21:39 MST

At 11:13 PM 29/01/01 -0600, Barbara Lamar wrote:

> I was referring to the population of the world, incidentally, when I
>spoke of a guaranteed income. It seems as though a technology which made it
>feasible to grant a guaranteed income to everyone in Europe at no expense
>to anyone would also be capable of doing the same for the population of the
>whole world.

Well, yes, but that's almost a trivial implication of drextech general
assemblers or even advanced earlier models. FWIW, what I was raising in THE
SPIKE was the notion (adapted from Theobald and his colleagues) that *right
now* in the technologically advanced world, a GI tax floor makes sense (1)
as a way of neatening up a whole barrage of social security safety nets
that often don't work or are counter-productive, and (2) getting people at
the margins of the human work economy used to the idea of living this way.

It would take a rich First World economy to permit this allocation of
resources prior to drextech; I can't see how it would work in India *until*
assemblers arrive, at which point maybe the economy changes *so* radically
there's little point talking about strategies and tactics just now. (And
maybe the species changes fast as well, although given the slow speed with
which humans grow to maturity I suppose that's not such an issue; the
emergence of AIs and SIs will be, of course, if it happens.)

Caution: this is *not* meant as a recipe for people lying in the gutter
with needles in their arms watching porno on government-provided street
corner TV screens and eating subsidized McChow. It could turn out that way,
or worse, but I think that dystopic forecast needs to be argued rather than
bleakly assumed.

Damien Broderick

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