Anarcho Capitalism

John K Clark (
Sun, 19 Apr 1998 22:54:55 -0700 (PDT)


On Sun, 19 Apr 98 (Tony Hollick) Wrote:

>In Democratic Agorism, Representatives in the (fully marketized,
>note) Agora Assembly need not elect a leader, and may pass no laws
>at all

Wonderful, so what are we arguing about?

>unless a clear majority of Electors want otherwise.

Oh. Now I see, you still think voting is a good way to make your wishes known,
I think it's idiotic.

>Democratic Agorism does not require a 'leader.' Horizontal
>reticular systems don't. Vertical ('Capitalist') systems do.
>You seem unable to understand the distinction.


>The Microsoft empire is founded on that looted, sad and dishonest
>MS-DOS thing;

There is another thing I don't understand, when you talk about "looting" and
"ripping off" you almost make it sound like a bad thing. That's how progress
is made, it's why everyone doesn't have to reinvent the wheel every day.
You have a good idea and start selling it, I make a few improvements and give
you some competition, you like my improvements and then make some of your own,
and on it goes.

>'Microsoft' is an 'artificial person.' I don't like the way
> MS-DOS was ripped-off from Gary Kildall's brilliant CP/M

Gary Kildall was an idiot, Bill Gates was not, that's why Gates became a
billionaire and Kildall didn't. In 1979 Microsoft was a computer language
company not a operating system company, when IBM executives visited tiny
Microsoft they made a deal to buy all of Microsoft's languages and most of
their applications for their new PC. Then the IBM people said "naturally
we'll want your operating system too". Gates told them they were misinformed,
Microsoft had no operating system but that Kildall's company "Digital
Research" did. With the IBM people still in the room Gates picked up the
phone and called Kildall explained the situation and said IBM wanted to talk
to him immediately. Some say Bill Gates is selfish but he offered Gary
Kildall the greatest business opportunity in history and on a silver platter.
Kildall blew it.

Kildall said he couldn't meet with IBM now because he was leaving town on
important business (what could be more important than this meeting I can't
imagine) Kildall said they could talk with his wife Dorothy if they wanted to,
IBM agreed. As was their custom, before anyone said a word IBM insisted that
everybody sign a non disclosure agreement, Gates had signed his immediately
but Dorothy panicked. She called her lawyer, he panicked. After the IBM
executives sat around the office of Digital Research for 4 hours saying and
doing nothing they gave up and went home.

>IBM at that time wanted a crippled version of CP/M

IBM wanted a 16 bit operating system your "brilliant" CP/M was 8 bit.
Tim Paterson, a programmer at tiny Seattle Computer Corporation got tired of
waiting for the long delayed 16 bit version of CP/M and so wrote his own
called QDOS (Quick and Dirty Operating System).

Gates was horrified at Kildall's blunder because he thought it would kill his
deal to sell IBM its computer languages, he was desperate to find a 16 bit
operating system, then he heard about QDOS and bought it for $50,000.

By the way, there is a myth that Tim Paterson became a street person and had
been seen cleaning windshields with a bottle of Windex and begging for
quarters. It's a wonderful story but its not true. Not long after Microsoft
bought QDOS Paterson got a job at Microsoft, he's not as rich as Gates but
like all early Microsoft employees he is a millionaire. For years he had a
picture of a bottle of Windex on his office door.

>they [IBM] didn't want personal computing to succeeed, remember,
>partly for economic reasons (to preserve mini and mainframe sales)
>and partly for social and political reasons.

That's true. As I said before, sometimes companies deliberately make an
inferior product, but it's always a disastrous policy and a wonderful
opportunity for competitors. If IBM hadn't done it Microsoft wouldn't be the
giant it is today, if Microsoft every tries it a new giant will be created
from somewhere.

>The market doesn't 'reward' _anything_, except if you call people
>impersonally following abstract price signals a matter for 'reward.'

Don't be silly, money is a reward.

>How much does a toilet cleaner, say, earn in your locality?

Not much. I don't find cleaning toilets intellectually stimulating or much
fun so I'd rather pay somebody who needs money more than me do it, that's
what money is for. Many people have that particular skill so I don't have to
pay much.

>If you view States as strata title landholding companies, as
>landowners they're entitled under _anarcho-capitalism_ to set
>whatever rules of social conduct they damn well please. You don't
>like it? So move.

1) There is no place to go, States are everywhere on Earth.
2) In Anarcho Capitalism it's easy to find a landlord with rules I like.
3) In Anarcho Capitalism I could become a landlord myself if I wanted.
4) Land is only a small percentage of wealth and getting smaller.

>I'd be genuinely interested in learning how you adjust to Rand's
>injunction to minimize your output. I had real heartbreak wrestling
>with the issue.

It's just a novel for heavens sake, it didn't change my life, it's not like
it's something really important, like a Star Trek convention.

>it is within our power to save the lives of children in Ethiopia
> we simply choose _not to_, Don't you see _any_ moral problem here?


>Is human life worthless to you?


>If I could offer a free operating system better than Windoze and I can

If it's better then obviously it must run hundreds of billions of dollars of
existing software better than Windows, I'm eager to hear more about this
marvelous new system of yours.

>I could never get it onto the market on any large scale. The US
>state would simply act to block it.

Even the US government is not quite that stupid, although the recent
antitrust action against Microsoft is close.

John K Clark

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