From: Samantha Atkins (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Date: Wed Jan 02 2002 - 23:55:29 MST
Lee Daniel Crocker wrote:
> > > resources remains the same--the amount of solar energy the planet
> > > can harness. It's only the efficiency with which we can use it
> > Not so. The effective amount of wealth does not remain the
> > same.
> I didn't say that, and I never would. Please don't misquote me.
> I understand the difference between natural resources and "wealth".
> But my statement stands: the former /is/ finite and limited.
> Our disagreement, if there is one, is that I believe that this
> limitation will become a /more/ significant factor limiting
> wealth as we advance, and you seem to contend that it will
> become less of a factor, and that more of our wealth will be
> informational and such. Your scenario is quite possible, and
> I won't discount it out of hand, but I can't share it. No matter
> how much wealth we create over and above natural resources,
> someone with more natural resources can still create more than
> someone with less.
Except for raw matter and energy, what but information and
technology to use the information would be of benefit after
deployment of full MNT? How would having other "natural
resources" be of great advantage. I honestly don't see how.
> > That it is not literally infinite is rather beside the point.
> > It is certainly not be any stretch "scarcity" of the kind our
> > economic system was designed to cope with unless we create
> > artificial scarcity by insisting the commons stays artificially
> > small and everything imaginable has a price tag slapped on it.
> > I have actually heard some go so far as to claim that every atom
> > of matter and erg of energy must be owned by someone.
> Yep, I'm one of those. Owned things get put to effective use;
> things in the commons are inevitably destroyed and neglected.
Doesn't it bother you that it is literally impossible to impose
ownership on every erg of energy? Do you not understand the
values of commons to innovation?
> > > Just because it's harder for humans to visualize the difference
> > > between 1 and 2 billion than to visualize the difference between
> > > 1 and 2 hundred doesn't mean the difference doesn't exist. As I've
> > > said before, when everyone on the planet is a billionaire, the guy
> > > with 10 billion still gets the girl, the bigger spaceship, the
> > > asteroid in the better neighborhood, and the nicer toys. "Scarcity"
> > > is a relative thing.
> > I would hope that we grow out of this kind of adolescent rivalry
> > fairly soon. But I won't hold my breath.
> Competition is life. There is no higher purpose, or nobler pursuit.
> It is only when competition deteriorates into predation and violence
> that there is a problem, and I would certainly hope that we grow
> out of /that/. But as for competition in general, if there weren't
> such a thing, I can't imagine wanting to live.
Life is whatever we decide to make of it from here on out.
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