Re: Gov't loves Gov't

Steven Talcott Smith (
Mon, 26 Jan 1998 11:42:17 -0500

> > Perhaps we should all realize that capitalism will soon become an
> > absurdity and cease to exist. As technology increases productive
> > capacities, and automates the whole process, you, me and all extropians
> > may soon be able to sit on our butts, doing whatever we like, and still
> > have all the goods and services we can dream of. . .absolutely free. .
> > ..all without working.

We don't have to wait around for this to happen perfectly for everyone.
There are whole classes today for whom this is effectively true. For many,
market signals all point towards taking up space in somebody's cubicle farm.
This is called Knowledge Work.

The only incentive to really get off your butt (not literally of course)
is to be able consume excess goods and services comprising the next
level conceived of by marketers and desired by a television-addicted
population. (or is it?)

What's your point? Is this an ideal: to sit on your butt? I would argue
that a little extrapolation seems to indicate that the abundance of goods
and services you speak about (at least as they are provided in our
current economic system) is predicated on a life of subtle slavery
for many of the most "productive" (==predictable) citizens whose
economic lives (production and consumption patterns) are hardly
matters of conscious choice or will. What does it mean to "do what
we like" when the requirements for life are so easy to obtain at even
the most modest levels of modern American society and most of the
visible production and consumption is driven by marketing?

-Steven Talcott Smith

PS: hello, I'm new to the list.