Re: Fix unemployment (was: Re: Hollywood Economics)

Hal Finney (
Thu, 3 Sep 1998 07:49:31 -0700

I think Robin had an idea which could help with the problem of structural unemployment due to job skills becoming obsolete. The idea was that you could sell "income futures" which would give the buyer a percentage share of your future income. (Apologies if I misunderstood the idea.)

In this system, someone who is in an industry which is doomed to obsolescence would not be able to make much money from his income futures contracts. Savvy investors would see the writing on the wall and know that there was no long-term value. Switching to another industry, or retraining to be able to switch later, would be immediately rewarded by the increase in value of his futures. Perhaps the additional value could even be used to fund the retraining costs.