SOC/TECH Re: Working with the government

From: Alex Future Bokov (
Date: Tue Jun 27 2000 - 10:32:50 MDT


On Tue, 27 Jun 2000, Brian Atkins wrote:

> I'm pretty cynical when it comes to government, and my opinion is that
> spending time and resources lobbying it or otherwise participating in that
> process is a waste. You really have to find some way to jump outside of
> it.

Ah, but I'm not talking only about working with the government. Habitat
for Humanity, Food Gatherers, and groups like that have done more to help
people than most government programs have.

Given, if the government came along and offered me a suitcase of money
on terms that weren't inconsistant with whatever it was I was already
up to, well, mama didn't raise no fool. Not too different from basic
research funding, really.

But getting back to the original topic, it's perfectly possible and
self-consistant for lassiez-faire capitalist types to help those in
need and do it more efficiently than centrally planned bureaucracies
ever will (as seems to be the case with other areas of life). All
while cultivating a new market for their cell phones/folding
houseboats/internet appliances/solar stoves/what have you.

Who was it that came up with the idea that to help others you have to
necesserily sacrifice yourself? That damn zero sum assumption sneaking
up on us again.

- --

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