[ExI] The new Century

Dan dan_ust at yahoo.com
Wed Aug 17 17:43:04 UTC 2011

H+ perfectionism in date format would be, IMO, YYYY.MM.DD (as long as we're sticking to year, month, day combos) -- not either the American or European standards.
Also, "minarchy" is usually used to mean a libertarian government. It seems Amon wants something that'll be more like a modern regulatory welfare state, albeit one that specifically regulates and redistributes in a fashion he approves of. (Let's leave alone, for now, that a minarchy in the usual terms seems a contradiction in terms or, at best, an unstable form of government likely to swiftly grow outside any bounds set on it.) To be sure, he could detail just what his ideal government would be disallowed from doing -- even when it might serve the ends he wants.
Other comments made regarding capitalism also seem off the mark. For instance, what is meant by "unrestrained Capitalism"? Certainly, whatever economic system we live under now -- the one he opines is putting us on the "verge of a Second Great Depression" -- seems highly regulated and has many, varied welfare features. (For the record, I'd be a little more careful with the use of "capitalism." People often use it to mean many things -- an economy where capital accumulation is a major if not dominant feature (generic capitalism), an economy where big business sets policy* (in other words, state capitalism), or a free market (where big businesses might not survive)). Amor's use of "unrestrained" suggests he believes that there are no regulations now and we live under some sort of near total free market.
To be sure, one might say that markets or, more precisely, individuals** are free, but this is always by comparison. If one takes the long view, I think, overally, markets are more regulated now than ever before -- and this trend can be traced back to the late 19th century for the US and Europe. This is not to say that since then regulation has always and everywhere increased, but the recent decade does not offer a counterexample to this. (To be sure, in the late 1970s, some trucking, energy, and airline deregulation did occur in the US. And some half-baked banking deregulation also took place in the 1980s and the late 1990s. I say half-baked here because that industry is so heavily regulated and subsidized that's this is akin to letting cabinet members compete and calling that a free market in government.)
Like Penn Gilette, too (thanks to Spike for posting Penn's essay), it is "amazing to me how many people think that voting to have the government give poor people money is compassion. Helping poor and suffering people is compassion. Voting for our government to use guns to give money to help poor and suffering people is immoral self-righteous bullying laziness."
* Where do you think all those regulations come from? Many if not most of them are lobby for and written by businesses -- usually ones bent on stifling competition and maintaining their market position through anything but actually satisfying customers.
** This isn't really about markets per se, but about what people can do with themselves and their property. Free markets are merely a derivative of that. After all, it's easy to imagine a free society where people in general decide not to interact much or not to interact via markets, as in merely gifting to each other. These are, of course, unlikely on a wide scale or for all interactions, but they do illustrate that it's individual freedom here that matters and on which a truly free market must rest and not vice versa. (Of course, any prohibition or regulation of markets is, by implication, a prohibition or a regulation of individuals, i.e., a limitation of individual freedom.)

From: Will Steinberg <steinberg.will at gmail.com>
To: ExI chat list <extropy-chat at lists.extropy.org>
Sent: Wednesday, August 17, 2011 12:58 PM
Subject: Re: [ExI] The new Century

Sounds pretty good.  I especially admire your ideas about the number of members needed--of my few found enlighteneds, almost all think a movement can flourish from a cabal of something like under ten people.  Impossible.
Do you live in the states?  You write American but date European, I assume it is just the h+ perfectionism though.  I would like to meet in the physical world.  It is good to find more links in this jewelled net braided gold...
On Aug 17, 2011 12:40 PM, "Amon Zero" <amon at doctrinezero.com> wrote:
>I've just posted something new on my blog which might be of interest to folks here:
>All the Best,
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