BASICS: Free Market
Wed, 29 Apr 1998 03:16:30 -0700 (PDT)

I sent this yesterday but it never came back from the list...

Paul Hughes [] wrote:
>Is your *particular* free-market philosophy so weak that it cannot withstand
>debate? And you call yourself an extropian? If you can't deal with healthy
>debate within your own community (I am an extropian and have been so for at >least
>8 years) how to you expect to deal with it in the rest of the world?

Gee, I've only heard this debate about, ooh, maybe three hundred times on
this list and others; it's pointless and I have no interest in it. I don't
subscribe to this list for discussions I've already heard three hundred
times before, which could be avoided if you and others would just read a
few of the books on the reading list.

Not that it matters anyway; if the kind of technologies we're talking
about are possible, then government is dead. It's that simple. You can
talk all you want about governments forcing the rich to pay for the poor,
but the first rich person with a private nuke or -- "Bob" forbid -- grey
goo makes the whole question moot. Government is by its very nature a target-rich environment; you can't govern in secret in any meaningful

Now, if you want to discuss possible forms of government -- if there are
any -- in a relatively stable posthuman society I'd be quite interested,
but discussions of government policy in the next few decades seem as
useful as discussions of the future of Monarchy in 1770. As far as I'm
concerned we either end up with a massive centralised surveillance state
or an anarchic free market; there's room around those extremes but there
doesn't seem to be any stable middle ground.