[ExI] Slavery Now and in the Past (was: Health system, again)
rafal.smigrodzki at gmail.com
Thu Apr 17 01:17:37 UTC 2008
On Tue, Apr 15, 2008 at 1:54 PM, John Grigg <possiblepaths2050 at gmail.com> wrote:
> Rafal wrote:
> ### First of all, you find absence of capitalism there. The government
> will do whatever the power-wielders want it to do. If they can benefit
> from slavery, government will support slavery. "The people", or at
> least some of them, make up the government, so, just as you can't make
> a silk purse out of a sow's ear, you can't wring honest laws out of a
> government supported by nasty people.
> The fictional nasty people of S.M. Stirling's Draka Empire alternate history
> sf series is an example of this. The Draka are in some ways the modern
> equivalent of Sparta.
### This is a neat sf story.... but if we are talking about realistic
scenarios, I think that nastiness of this kind is strongly self
defeating, at least as long as there are competing political entities.
Keeping a lot of people in wretched servitude by brute force is just
not very productive. The Gulag is an example: millions of people
devoured and nary a thing to show for it. I am reasonably confident
that outright slavery is not a common thing among our highly-developed
On the other hand, other nastiness may be viable: Killing off most
people after a group develops human-equivalent AI. Developing
mind-control techniques to make willing slaves (see Vinge's "A
Deepness in the Sky", an excellent book). The eternal world-spanning
I am curious where we end up after the singularity.... I really am.
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