Re: The meta-invisible hand

Damien Broderick (
Mon, 22 Sep 1997 13:57:59 +0000

At 05:32 PM 9/21/97 -0700, T. L. G. Willow wrote:

>I'm suggesting that we might be rich enough to use machines to provide a
>minimum level of living to everyone, and not stigmatize them for it, and
>count on people's not wanting to feel useless or bored to keep them
>doing something which might be useful now or later, or just
>interesting. And if we're not that rich, perhaps becoming so should be
>one of our shorter term goals.

Pretty much the view I take in THE SPIKE. After a while, if the minting
(molecular nanotechnology) prospect turns out to be a goer, things will
tend to work themselves out anyway - or blow all to grey hell. What I
didn't really address in the book, except by continue-sort-of-as-things-are
implication, is how today's wealth might be potlatched in the least
offensive manner. Most people on this list clearly detest the idea of The
Man taking and distributing a share of the community's productivity, but is
there another way than an IRS to create and maintain a Guaranteed Income
floor (which I recommend in the book, on the same grounds as Mr Willow)?
Once it's in place, of course, there's the possibility of removing a lot of
bureaucratic busybodying and logjamming and like that...

Damien Broderick