Libertarian Economics
Thu, 18 Sep 1997 14:28:17 -0400 (EDT)

Joao Pedro wrote:

> Are most of you, extropians, libertarians?

I hope not. I have a difficult time spotting them.

> Why do you think free-markets are the best economical solution?

You know you've found the best solution when it can encounter every problem
you come across and not need any change to remain the best solution.
Free-market systems do exactly this.

> In today's world, it's almost impossible to do something without
> affecting other persons, still why do you claim individual freedom and
> an almost cult of individual property so important?

You answered your own question: "It's impossible to do anything without
affecting other persons" is the reason individual 'freedom' is necessary. I
don't think individual property is important. The free market would make
property 'rights' redundant, property belongs to whoever's holding it.

> Complete freedom in economies will bring to the scene big corporations
> instead of small, local business. Won't this corporations have too much
> power and therefore harming everyone (the consumers and general public)
> but themselves? Do you think the economy should be based on small
> business or big corporations?

This is a common misconception. The free market would favour short-lived,
agile and small companies. Most of today's large companies are relatively
old, the critical mass of a company is decreasing constantly. The free
market will take this futher, the lack of property rights and copyright law
will mean companies will no longer be able to lock consumers into closed
systems. This will decrease the potential for monopolies and monolithic
corporations. Even without a free market companies will continue to decrease
in size because of the move to a network economy. The mass of all companies
in one field is what will drive future economies, rather than each one
striving for complete control. Expect to see facless corporations being
replaced by small companies that pay more attention to social dynamics and
human factors, and turn over huge profits.

> What do you think of environmental issues? Do you think technology will
> always give us the solutions to all our problems?

If the consumer wants environmental issues addressed, the consumer will get
environmental issues addressed. Free market business answers to the
consumer, not the government, and the consumer is far more controlling and
far more demanding. Technology is nothing without implementation. Free
markets, again due to lack of property rights and copyrights, focus more
marketing energy on the implementation of the technology than the technology
itself. This is because technology is open to anyone, so in order to stay
ahead, business must implement technology in the best and most innovative
way. This is positive for progress also, because technology is open, the
entire market is working on its improvement rather than one company that owns
the patent.

> What do you think the intervention of government in economy should be?

Zero. To have a truly *free* market you can't have a government at all.

Did I make it sound good?


Note: In the context of this mail I'm talking about 'a free market' not 'The
Free Market.' All the ideas expressed come from applying the concept of
'free' to the concept of 'market.' As such they are predictions, only
politicians make promises.