RE: true abundance?

From: denis bider (
Date: Mon Feb 19 2001 - 13:04:07 MST

Damien Broderick wrote:

> Of course, people with brains ruined or addled by major
> narcotics and accidie might not be able to make these
> decisions, and might therefore just keep getting pregnant
> anyway. But doesn't this happen anyway to the benighted in
> any First World community without death squads or armed
> contraception police?

The basic problem here is that once you start giving a resource away for
free, and the resource is limited, you have to restrain access to the
resource. In this case: if you don't prevent idle people from multiplying,
they will multiply until they exhaust the capacities you can provide, at
which time the situation will be the same as it is now - only worse because
there will be even more people.

If we were to provide people with guaranteed income, be it nano-generated
resources or plain old money, external birth control is a must. The universe
is finite, so the number of people must remain so as well.

> In a sense, but, pre-nanotech, the notion is that the GI
> would be marginal, just enough to scrape by on.

By nature, people are lazy. Given just enough to scrape by on, a culture may
soon develop in which the vast majority would do exactly that. Children born
into such a society would know inactivity as the only way to live. You've
probably been to Egypt or a similar country; that is it. People were born
into an atmosphere of idleness, and they don't know any better.

The trick might be to engineer people to have less simplistic desires. To
engineer people who have a desire for action, rather than aversion against

And then the additional caveat would be to introduce all these controls and
engineering attempts in a way that does not directly do harm to people who
already exist. I.e.: engineering to produce a smarter and better homo
sapiens is good. On the other hand, killing people you perceive to be stupid
is not good.

- denis

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