Re: Justice and Punishment

Alejandro Dubrovsky (
Fri, 3 Apr 1998 04:28:51 +1000 (GMT+1000)

On Wed, 1 Apr 1998, Dan Fabulich wrote:

> At 03:59 AM 4/2/98 +1000, you wrote:
> >so a billionaire's whim would be much more powerful than any "standard"
> >indivual's greatest desire. What would stop someone like Bill Gates from
> >doing what he will with 10000000 Indians? Not to mention that most
> >people's wieldable money (spare money?) is much less than 2% of a rich
> >person's spare money.
> Theoretically, he could, but after doing so he wouldn't be Bill Gates
> anymore. He wouldn't just have to have lots of money, he'd have to SPEND
> his money (all of it) in order to get that kind of power.

first of all, he wouldn't have to spend all his money. He earns more per
unit time than those 10000000 Indians combined, so he would just have to
spend a couple of months until the indians run out of funds. Second of
all, even if someone did have to spend all his money (say a lesser god,
like rupert murdoch or ted turner), that is still way too much power to
give to one person. Most of the psychotic dictators around the world
didn't get anywhere near that figure (arguably only three ever made it
there, counting side effects and other stuff)

> >Also, what's the difference between a large PPA and
> >a standard nation state, in which you pay taxes to be protected?
> >What will protect you from your own PPA?
> Other PPAs. If your PPA decides to get tyrannical, you decide to stop
> paying them for protection and instead pay another PPA (who will gladly
> accept your funds) to protect you against your current PPA. If your
> current PPA is really being tyrannical, then lots of people will favor this
> strategy and the tyrannical PPA will be out of funding. They may still try
> to wage war, and lose even more money, until eventually they'll be out of
> business.
That is if your PPA lets you decide where your money is
going to go. I think the analogy with the nation state is pretty useful.
you could fund another nation, (a la cubans in the US), but only if that
other nation is more powerful than your current one. And that does not
guarantee that your new PPA won't do the same thing, even though it
might not be to the same degree (again, a la cubans in
the US).
Alejandro Dubrovsky