Re: (fwd) why Minerva failed

Robin Hanson (hanson@econ.Berkeley.EDU)
Wed, 11 Feb 1998 14:16:26 -0800

Anton Sherwood <> quotes (Graydon):

>>starting new countries in odd corners doesn't feel plausible anymore
>Transportation is too cheap.
>When it's really expensive, no one can project power/expect to perform
>resource extraction, but no one can colonize effectively, either. When
>it's sorta medium, one can establish a marcher state and develop the
>ability to assert sovereignity faster than one can be subjected to control
>by someone over yonder performing power projection. When transportation
>is really inexpensive, you can't get far enough away in economic terms to
>establish a distinct sovereignity.

A big open question is whether and when it will be feasible to establish
such autonomous places in our solar system. Now transportation is too
expensive to do much of anything out there, and eventually transportation
will be comparable to transportation on earth now. In between, early
colonies may be so dependent on the earth economy that autonomy is still

Robin Hanson
RWJF Health Policy Scholar, Sch. of Public Health 510-643-1884
140 Warren Hall, UC Berkeley, CA 94720-7360 FAX: 510-643-8614