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Author Topic: Bitcoin Wealth Distribution (Bitcoinica data)  (Read 30662 times)
ElectricMucus
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November 06, 2011, 11:26:30 PM
 #21

I am against the prohibition of anything except violence. I was more referring to a systematic approach where such a relationship would be undesirable and unnecessary.

Yes I think it should be unlawful to charge interest. (Law as mutually agreed ethics, and there is a wide historic agreement on this subject)
Interest imo is a kind of financial violence.

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November 06, 2011, 11:54:13 PM
 #22

So, properly read, a stat like "the top 1% own 50% of the wealth" should be understood as "the top 1% produced 50% of the wealth"... and then with that understanding it quite quickly shows the folly of policies which punish, tax, and otherwise hinder such people. It also illustrates the sheer productive uselessness of vast swaths of the population.
Not under a system which permits usury and 'employment'

That's irrelevant for bitcoin though. But be warned: Angy mobs normally lynch people who express this kind of attitude publicly...

Indeed.  History shows that wealth does get distributed periodically through one means or another.  I'm a Socialist very much for practical reasons associated with the frequency and manner in which the deed ends up getting done.


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November 06, 2011, 11:59:52 PM
 #23


Interest imo is a kind of financial violence.

Hmmmm is interest only "financial violence" when it's applied to money? Or to any commodity?

Meaning, if I have a bag of seeds and can be productive in the quantity of X with them, but you can be productive with the seeds in the quantity of X+Y. Am I being financially violent by asking for X+ (Y/2) seeds back at a future date?

I have never understood the intense antagonism toward interest. It is merely the price asked for in return for use of a commodity. Most importantly, it's voluntary... what's the problem?

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November 07, 2011, 12:04:10 AM
 #24

So, properly read, a stat like "the top 1% own 50% of the wealth" should be understood as "the top 1% produced 50% of the wealth"... and then with that understanding it quite quickly shows the folly of policies which punish, tax, and otherwise hinder such people. It also illustrates the sheer productive uselessness of vast swaths of the population.

That's great in a real economy where people actually produce something (usually) to earn wealth. What about bitcoin?

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November 07, 2011, 12:23:06 AM
 #25


Interest imo is a kind of financial violence.

Hmmmm is interest only "financial violence" when it's applied to money? Or to any commodity?

Meaning, if I have a bag of seeds and can be productive in the quantity of X with them, but you can be productive with the seeds in the quantity of X+Y. Am I being financially violent by asking for X+ (Y/2) seeds back at a future date?

I have never understood the intense antagonism toward interest. It is merely the price asked for in return for use of a commodity. Most importantly, it's voluntary... what's the problem?


The problem is considering competition and compound interest. Suddenly this seemingly innocent act becomes a major influence on behavior. It's mainly a cultural issue.... A weak comparison: In some places the age of consent is 14 in some 16, in some 9...

Now I attribute the to lender a similar responsibility an adult has in respect to sex with younger partners. Understood?

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November 07, 2011, 12:28:58 AM
 #26


The problem is considering competition and compound interest. Suddenly this seemingly innocent act becomes a major influence on behavior. It's mainly a cultural issue.... A weak comparison: In some places the age of consent is 14 in some 16, in some 9...

Now I attribute the to lender a similar responsibility an adult has in respect to sex with younger partners. Understood?

I assumed we were discussing behavior between "consenting adults"... let's say two 35 year old men. Why is interest "financial violence"?

And is it immoral of me to ask my bank to pay me interest in return for letting them borrow my money? (let's assume honest banks operating under sound money, not gov-subsidized banks operating under fiat)
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November 07, 2011, 12:29:55 AM
 #27

So, properly read, a stat like "the top 1% own 50% of the wealth" should be understood as "the top 1% produced 50% of the wealth"... and then with that understanding it quite quickly shows the folly of policies which punish, tax, and otherwise hinder such people. It also illustrates the sheer productive uselessness of vast swaths of the population.

That's great in a real economy where people actually produce something (usually) to earn wealth. What about bitcoin?

I just wrote some site content for a guy and was paid in Bitcoin. What are you talking about?
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November 07, 2011, 12:34:38 AM
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The problem is considering competition and compound interest. Suddenly this seemingly innocent act becomes a major influence on behavior. It's mainly a cultural issue.... A weak comparison: In some places the age of consent is 14 in some 16, in some 9...

Now I attribute the to lender a similar responsibility an adult has in respect to sex with younger partners. Understood?

I assumed we were discussing behavior between "consenting adults"... let's say two 35 year old men. Why is interest "financial violence"?

And is it immoral of me to ask my bank to pay me interest in return for letting them borrow my money? (let's assume honest banks operating under sound money, not gov-subsidized banks operating under fiat)
hehe, you are arguing around my point.
The lender automatically is in the stronger position.

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evoorhees
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November 07, 2011, 01:29:50 AM
 #29

hehe, you are arguing around my point.
The lender automatically is in the stronger position.

So when I lend money to the bank for cumulative interest, you are suggesting that I am automatically in the stronger position?

I'm really trying to understand why interest is immoral in your opinion, because you're not the only one who says that and I'm totally confused.  To me it's just a mutual exchange by two interested parties, and whether one has a "stronger position" or not is irrelevant if both parties believe themselves better off by the trade.

Please help me to understand.
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November 07, 2011, 01:44:49 AM
 #30

hehe, you are arguing around my point.
The lender automatically is in the stronger position.

So when I lend money to the bank for cumulative interest, you are suggesting that I am automatically in the stronger position?

I'm really trying to understand why interest is immoral in your opinion, because you're not the only one who says that and I'm totally confused.  To me it's just a mutual exchange by two interested parties, and whether one has a "stronger position" or not is irrelevant if both parties believe themselves better off by the trade.

Please help me to understand.
That is something born out of the current system, only possible because the existence of banks and compound interest. If the banks weren't already in the position to lend money (and factor out derivatives) you wouldn't be able to get into this position.
The charging of interest is a self perpetuating mechanism which works both ways. If nobody charges interest and only relies on trust and/or compassion it is no longer needed.

But anyway: I recon, that lending for interest might not be feasible to prohibit but rather only provide the legal right to get back the loan without interest. On the other hand the lender might come up with other, yet prohibited ways to collect interest which is why it might be wise to prohibit it in the first place.
 

PS: All these considerations are theoretical in nature, since I have no idea how it would be like living in a system without usury. It is only the way I personally think thing should work and it might not be feasible in current society. I attribute myself to parts of syndicalist and primitivist schools of anarchism with a spice of futurism, so it might be understandable that my views might seem a little ''far fetched' or 'conflicting' but it makes sense to me Wink

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November 07, 2011, 02:22:26 AM
 #31

That is something born out of the current system, only possible because the existence of banks and compound interest. If the banks weren't already in the position to lend money (and factor out derivatives) you wouldn't be able to get into this position.
The charging of interest is a self perpetuating mechanism which works both ways. If nobody charges interest and only relies on trust and/or compassion it is no longer needed.

But anyway: I recon, that lending for interest might not be feasible to prohibit but rather only provide the legal right to get back the loan without interest. On the other hand the lender might come up with other, yet prohibited ways to collect interest which is why it might be wise to prohibit it in the first place.
 

PS: All these considerations are theoretical in nature, since I have no idea how it would be like living in a system without usury. It is only the way I personally think thing should work and it might not be feasible in current society. I attribute myself to parts of syndicalist and primitivist schools of anarchism with a spice of futurism, so it might be understandable that my views might seem a little ''far fetched' or 'conflicting' but it makes sense to me Wink

Let's examine this a bit further...

-Assume we live in a free society where some commodity like gold or bitcoin has become the general money
-Assume I have lots of this money, and another guy wants some of it as capital to start his business... he wants a loan from me.
-I am willing to loan him the money at 10% interest per year until principle + interest is paid back
-He is willing to take that offer and agrees to the terms

Now... what part of that is immoral?? You call it "usury". By what right do you decide for either of us what is the "acceptable" price of money? Under what justification do you tell the man he may not borrow my money, or tell me I must refund the interest after the debt is paid?

Where is the harm? Your idea doesn't seem "far fetched"... it just seems "wrong." For if it's immoral to loan a man a money-commodity at a price, then it ought to be immoral to loan other commodities at a price... such as seeds or lumber or xbox games.

Why is it okay to loan a man one seed in return for two later, but it's not okay to loan him one dollar in return for two later?
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November 07, 2011, 02:40:14 AM
 #32

It might be something different with a (self!) reproducing good like seeds or chickens (would be debatable but I would still advise against it), but for a limited commodity or money I don't see it as ethical. In my opinion lending should rely on trust and compassion only.

It is my opinion that interest pushes society further apart, and that as a lender you would have greater benefit from the bonding and reputation within society than from the interest. Usury (as refereed to as charging of any interest in the traditional definition) results in the general feeling of disconnectedness which is commonly believed in our society as professionalism which is just another illusion that the exploitation of others would yield in a long term personal benefit.

The harm is mainly substantiation for this connection by means of currency, and to a lesser extent the tendency to increase the steepness of the wealth pyramid. So while there may be a case where no subjective exploitation takes place, in a systematic view I still consider it harmful.

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November 07, 2011, 02:52:05 AM
 #33

Electric, does what you mentioned in the PM to me have anything to do with the JAK lending system? I think it's a great idea, but I don't see how it can really work on a global scale or be provided by a currency itself.

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November 07, 2011, 03:06:40 AM
 #34

Electric, does what you mentioned in the PM to me have anything to do with the JAK lending system? I think it's a great idea, but I don't see how it can really work on a global scale or be provided by a currency itself.
Well, I haven't really considered that the currency aspect of the system. And it could, if bitcoin just suffers from growing pains be based around it. (If the issues we both agree on are solved)

A global scale system would try to incorporate recent developments like bitcoin, ripple,  community networks and decentralized production with open source ecology into something known as in the 80s as the Abundance data entry software. A system written to enable charities to create an abundance of food, water and shelter on the planet.
Only this time not rely on any institution but rather make it profitable for everyone to contribute to the effort. The whole thing would be a gargantuan task if attempted in the way systems are currently developed so we need a new system for collaboration first.

This is all very difficult to summarize and I need to write something down soon, it's about time...  Smiley

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November 07, 2011, 03:17:56 AM
 #35

It might be something different with a (self!) reproducing good like seeds or chickens (would be debatable but I would still advise against it), but for a limited commodity or money I don't see it as ethical. In my opinion lending should rely on trust and compassion only.

It is my opinion that interest pushes society further apart, and that as a lender you would have greater benefit from the bonding and reputation within society than from the interest. Usury (as refereed to as charging of any interest in the traditional definition) results in the general feeling of disconnectedness which is commonly believed in our society as professionalism which is just another illusion that the exploitation of others would yield in a long term personal benefit.

The harm is mainly substantiation for this connection by means of currency, and to a lesser extent the tendency to increase the steepness of the wealth pyramid. So while there may be a case where no subjective exploitation takes place, in a systematic view I still consider it harmful.

Electric... if you believe lending at interest to be immoral and wrong, that is a fine opinion to have. But trying to force your morality on other people who disagree with you seems antagonistic to the "trust and compassion" you use to justify your position.

Personally, I've loaned money, and I've borrowed money at interest. Both behaviors made me better off, and they made the person on the opposite side of the trade better off as well. Far from "pushing society apart," interest-bearing loans help society to flourish, for resources which may be more profitably used by others are able to be acquired in a free and open bidding process... an "interest rate" is simply the price that such a process results in, at any given time.

Your alternative of "only relying on trust and compassion" for lending is a great policy among friends, but limits the scope of the marketplace for money solely to close groups of friends.

If your policy were implemented as law, I promise you society would be impoverished for its lack of "usury."
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November 07, 2011, 07:23:28 AM
 #36

All currencies inherently favor an arbitrary group of people, and so corrupts that group. Any system that requires one person to submit to another in any fashion is going to develop into a corrupt and tyrannical one given enough time. Learning to use our technological capabilities for the benefit of all people would obviate the need for any currency, and therefor any need for submission or slavery.

Bitcoin combines money, the wrongest thing in the world, with software, the easiest thing in the world to get wrong.
Visit www.thevenusproject.com and www.theZeitgeistMovement.com.
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November 07, 2011, 07:59:15 AM
 #37

All currencies inherently favor an arbitrary group of people, and so corrupts that group. Any system that requires one person to submit to another in any fashion is going to develop into a corrupt and tyrannical one given enough time. Learning to use our technological capabilities for the benefit of all people would obviate the need for any currency, and therefor any need for submission or slavery.

The root of the problem is human nature.. not methods... Bitcoin just removes another instrument in arsenal of power.
Leaving more radical methods the only options... There will be blood - definitely...

Things like Bitcoin just haste development of the people and everything will come down to... If you wanna live - change yourself from inside.. ( and no technology will ever help you with this no matter how developed it is)

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November 07, 2011, 02:30:21 PM
 #38

Electric... if you believe lending at interest to be immoral and wrong, that is a fine opinion to have. But trying to force your morality on other people who disagree with you seems antagonistic to the "trust and compassion" you use to justify your position.

...

If your policy were implemented as law, I promise you society would be impoverished for its lack of "usury."
Well I wouldn't make it illegal, just only provide the legal right from a contract to get back the loan itself.
So if then anyone decides to give back a surplus it would be arbitrary and voluntary.

I'd imagine the cases were this would actually happen would be quite frequent, I would like to think of it like giving a tip at the restaurant.

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November 07, 2011, 02:41:12 PM
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Electric... if you believe lending at interest to be immoral and wrong, that is a fine opinion to have. But trying to force your morality on other people who disagree with you seems antagonistic to the "trust and compassion" you use to justify your position.

Personally, I've loaned money, and I've borrowed money at interest. Both behaviors made me better off, and they made the person on the opposite side of the trade better off as well. Far from "pushing society apart," interest-bearing loans help society to flourish, for resources which may be more profitably used by others are able to be acquired in a free and open bidding process... an "interest rate" is simply the price that such a process results in, at any given time.

Your alternative of "only relying on trust and compassion" for lending is a great policy among friends, but limits the scope of the marketplace for money solely to close groups of friends.

If your policy were implemented as law, I promise you society would be impoverished for its lack of "usury."

True true..

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November 07, 2011, 07:31:54 PM
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Electric... if you believe lending at interest to be immoral and wrong, that is a fine opinion to have. But trying to force your morality on other people who disagree with you seems antagonistic to the "trust and compassion" you use to justify your position.

...

If your policy were implemented as law, I promise you society would be impoverished for its lack of "usury."
Well I wouldn't make it illegal, just only provide the legal right from a contract to get back the loan itself.
So if then anyone decides to give back a surplus it would be arbitrary and voluntary.

I'd imagine the cases were this would actually happen would be quite frequent, I would like to think of it like giving a tip at the restaurant.

This might be viable for short-term loans, but it the case of long-term loans it would mean that the lender is getting back less in real value than they loaned.  They'd literally be better of financially letting their money sit in a savings account at low interest or investing it elsewhere than directly loaning it to another person.  Few people are in the financial position where they can afford to have their net worth eroded by using their money to give interest-free loans of any size.  The majority of people will have inadequate funds for their retirement as it is - they need their money to be earning them more money.

All I can say is that this is Bitcoin. I don't believe it until I see six confirmations.
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