Re: human capital market

Peter C. McCluskey (
Sun, 22 Feb 1998 10:50:37 -0800

hanson@econ.Berkeley.EDU (Robin Hanson) writes:
>Huh? I would expect this sort of market to increase equality, by allowin=
>people to insure against the largest risk they face: uncertainty regardin=
>their future earning potential. =20

It would allow people to achieve that equalizing effect, but I suspect
that the people most likely to be poor without such markets are also the
people least likely to have the foresight or intelligence to realize the
benefits of such markets.

>>One reason extropians might be interested in the development of a human
>>capital market, besides that it give people choices they didn=D5t have
>>before, is that it may allow greater investment in human capital in a
>>scenario where this is especially risky.=20
>I'd say the more important benefit is to allow people to avoid poverty af=
>an upload or AI transition. Post-transition, their wages would be worth
>much less, but if they've sold some of those wages for non-wage capital,
>they'll suffer less a hit on total wealth.=20

This is an important reason why such markets would increase inequality
- the people who can take advantage of this are the minority who are
most aware of the future. Once the average person realizes that most wages
will drop significantly, this market will dry up.

Peter McCluskey  |  | Has anyone used           | to comment on your web pages?