Re: "Save the poor children" and "Pyramids"

Dan Hook (
Mon, 5 May 1997 19:08:22 -0400

> From: Erik Moeller <>
> To:
> Subject: Re: "Save the poor children" and "Pyramids"
> Date: Tuesday, May 06, 1997 3:00 PM
> my inner geek wrote:
> > >I can't talk for Extropians, but I can talk for myself. And I know
> > >that economy and free markets is what makes those people poor.
> > Some facts are so simple and obvious that somehow they get
> > overlooked.
> >
> > Free markets and economies don't make poor children. Parents do.
> Conclusion: Make those powerful guys cleverer, and they'll recognize
> that making the everone else cleverer, too, will be to their own benefit
> in the long term. That's all you need. No communism (any communist
> movement is crushed in its roots, whether by media propaganda or by
> weapons power), no free markets and no dictatorships (whereas these two
> are actually the same).

The rest of the post is littered with economic fallacies (mainly that
corporations are more concerned about power than money) but this is the
paragraph that I think deserves the most dissection.

A society without dictatorships (or more generally, coercion) is a free
market. How do you propose to educate these "powerful guys"? Persuasive
argument or at the end of a gun? One is the free market and the other is

> Maybe I just want the same thing you do:
> Make this world a better place.

The temptation to sarcasm is great but I shall resist. Nobody on this list
is evil. There are some who are stupid and ignorant but nobody sets out to
do deliberate harm. This can be said of most people in the population.
How many people do you know who go around saying "My goal in life is to
make the world a horrible place to live,"? There are many who have that
effect but most would say that making the world a better place is a worthy

Dan Hook