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Author Topic: Occupy Round Table on Bitcoin  (Read 9988 times)
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December 12, 2011, 02:29:54 PM
 #141

I'm not an economist or financier, just an engineer. I helped a teensy bit with engines intended for the A380.

From MY perspective, the design and build of the A380 would have been easier in a RBE. No intellectual property in my way (that's a big one), no export control laws, no union conflicts, no "financial quarters" driving due dates instead of going straight back from the build schedule, no one working the project who isn't personally interested in flight... It's not like the A380 was made within a perfectly functional capitalist system.

Not to say the econ works out for everyone, but it's certainly not hard to imagine doing my part without the money stuff. Right now I've got everything I "need". So long as I don't miss out on too much fun stuff, I wouldn't mind the technocracy and would probably appreciate fewer corporatist roadblocks. The an-cap utopia so many propose here would be nice too; let's start both and then I'll decide who deserves my services more. Tongue
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December 12, 2011, 02:49:41 PM
 #142

Ok. First, thanks for the direct response. It's appreciated; I'm not just trying to slam RBE, rather I'm trying to scrutinize the one aspect that seems most out-of-place to me.


Let's presume an idealized RBE. Practically unlimited energy. Star Trek replicators. Everyone has their own. Forget how we get here... the discussion isn't that interesting (mostly speculation,) and since it's theoretically plausible, it's not really relevant how we get here.
We don't need to think Star Trek to talk about RBE. It does not need any Star Trek technologies, in fact RBE can be applied to a society of any level of technology. There have been tribes and communities in the past that had RBE mindset, they shared what they had and they knew that overfishing etc. is unsustainable, so they didn't do it. Of course if we apply RBE to the whole economy of the modern world, we need advanced technology. But unlimited energy and replicators is not a necessary part of it, the point of the whole system is the intelligent use of our scarce resources.

Oh, I understand that. But I think the various forms of possible, less-than-ideal RBEs are a distraction. I want to avoid the more trivial issues surrounding that, plus I want your arguments to be coming from the strongest possible base. Since I think replicators, to some degree, are theoretically possible (maybe a few thousand years down the road) and I agree that we can keep getting closer to this ideal, I have no problem starting my discussions about RBEs with the presumption that the ideal has been achieved. It makes things easier for you, and I have no issues with it.


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(1) How do I acquire all-natural done-by-a-human oil massages? (Yes, I'm serious.)
This is a good question. I think that in transition to a RBE type system you would need transitional methods. One of these methods could be timebanks, which are essentially a bartering system but they work perfectly for services such as massage. I've never claimed that it's a straightforward path to remove barter, it will be a very slow process and perhaps we never get rid of all barter. But I think that even this can change if we live in a type of "gift economy" for long enough, people just give you massages without expecting anything in return.

Timebanks... is this similar to things such as the LETS system? Or possibly bitcoin-denominated Ripple?

Personally, that's kind of what I envisioned. Once material goods are truly abundant, the most valuable things will become human services/performances and new ideas. The only way to keep track of those things is a simple accounting setup of some sort... possibly Bitcoin-like. So this makes sense.

I don't think there will be enough people gifting massages (at least, excluding creepy, over-eager masseurs no one wants to go to) to meet the demand of people wanting them though; I could see timebanks hanging around just to deal with this sort of excess demand. We'll probably have to agree to disagree over whether machine massages would be more desirable than human contact.


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(2) As a highly sought-after masseur, what would incentivize me to give massages to anyone besides close friends or loved ones? (I'm being precise; not "why would I", but "what would incentivize me.")
Possibly nothing and no one could force you to do it either, because it's unlikely that anyone has anything that you necessarily need. If they do, then there could be trade. Regardless, I see this direction as the right way to go. A lot of the bad jobs today are still there because the employees are forced to do something to secure their livelihoods. With an RBE type mindset we would try to solve the issue in other ways.

Actually, if there were timebanks, and I could trade the credits for massages for myself, personal entertainment from singers, etc., I'd find them valuable and could be incentivized by them.

Lacking incentive though ("I've given you three massages this week already Jim, I'm done for now,") it's good to hear no methods would be used to force one to provide a service.


Quote
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(3) What stops someone from quantifying the incentive (even in a crude, vague fashion) and then accumulating more of the incentive and making an industry out of that incentive?
I see a need for timebanks in the beginning but in general it's hard for any trading system to become anything but a small part of the society. It's important to remember that even stuff such as drugs would be 100% legal, all of them, so no black market can be born out of it. There are only a few niche markets where such a market could be born, and it's okay if it does.

Now, here's where I kinda get to my point. If timebanks are around, and I'm incentivized by them, likely others would be as well. This essentially would turn timebank credits into a form of money, and even if it's small, some sort of market (complete with exchange rates, etc.) would likely develop around it. ("Oh, honey! Five timebank credits! What a great birthday present!")

And, humans being human, a certain level of status or prestige would also likely become associated with accumulated credits. ("Man, that guy has a million credits! He could provide some pretty sweet services for himself and his kids for decades!") And of course, gifting credits or transferring them to ones descendants would be possible unless there was some deliberate attempt to prevent it (which, like today, would be worked around.)

If this market is allowed to function, even if socially frowned upon, then I guess that's the end of my questions. Essentially, money could crop up in a RBE, and those wanting to make use of it wouldn't be stopped from doing so. In which case, provided getting to this ideal is completely voluntary, I don't think I have any issues with RBEs.

Good luck.

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December 12, 2011, 03:06:27 PM
 #143

At the risk of this heading down a path that was NOT intended... some people just want the human contact. Whether they know it or not, this is one of the main reasons people visit masseuses today.

And that being the case... it seems clear to me that demand for this will always exceed the supply of people willing to just massage everyone for free out of charity. But that won't make the demand go away, despite the (monstrous, totalitarian) re-education that would be so desperately focused on to try to change human nature.

So, again, for someone seeking this service today, they just visit a spa, ask for the service, and pay some form of money for it.

How would one acquire a massage in a RBE?

You'd cultivate a relationship with someone.  The answer is most probably that one wouldn't 'acquire' one from strangers.
Is that a black mark against RBE?
"Respect from one's peers" will always be 'in demand' too... but (in most circles) you can't buy it. Same with genuine love. The demand outstrips the supply and money hasn't solved it.  
Is that a black mark against capitalism?

Quote from: westkybitcoins
despite the (monstrous, totalitarian) re-education that would be so desperately focused on to try to change human nature.
Where on earth does that notion come from?

I rather think the RBE will fail if one of it's main goals is to eliminate 'poverty' because the natural currency that would arise, without people even realizing it at first, would be 'reputation' & 'popularity'.
People would be sucking up to each other left right and center to 'put a good word in for me' with someone else.. to be part of the 'in' group etc.
That's how you'd get your massage. "hey.. get me invited to that party all the cool folk are going to.... I'll give you a nice back rub!"
There would still be social lepers - and they would be the new poor, but this time there isn't some other currency they can use to alleviate the suffering their social ineptitude might cause them.






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December 12, 2011, 03:21:53 PM
 #144

This whole RBE thing is still way too greatly dependent on the false assumption that we as a human species are not lazy. We are practically genetically programmed to collect as many resources as possible while doing as little as possible, since "doing" wears us out and makes us die faster. I am unconvinced that anyone would voluntarily go through the extremely grueling work of obtaining an advanced degree/education in any subject without knowing there will be a major payout at the end of it, which would give you an advantage over your peers. Why bother studying engineering, software development, biology, or resource allocation (economics), including all the parts you are guaranteed to have absolutely no interest in, but which are still essential in your field of interest, when you are already provided everything you need, and "someone else will just do that work for you"? From personal experience, I can tell you that brilliant people would much more likely end up slacking of, spending their days playing videogames, reading random books, or just debating random things on forums for hours rather than do any inventing work for the rest of you. Or they would end up forming an exclusive community where they can competitively to compare their levels of brilliance, use it as reputation, and invent their own barter and money system, exchanging their ideas only amongst each other, as a sort of a game to see who can collect the most "smart" points. Brilliant people are quite arrogant and competitive after all. And then the rest of you would be screwed.

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December 12, 2011, 03:32:03 PM
 #145

At the risk of this heading down a path that was NOT intended... some people just want the human contact. Whether they know it or not, this is one of the main reasons people visit masseuses today.

And that being the case... it seems clear to me that demand for this will always exceed the supply of people willing to just massage everyone for free out of charity. But that won't make the demand go away, despite the (monstrous, totalitarian) re-education that would be so desperately focused on to try to change human nature.

So, again, for someone seeking this service today, they just visit a spa, ask for the service, and pay some form of money for it.

How would one acquire a massage in a RBE?

You'd cultivate a relationship with someone.  The answer is most probably that one wouldn't 'acquire' one from strangers.
Is that a black mark against RBE?

I think it would be, if it were true that strangers wouldn't perform the service. But I really don't see that being the only way to acquire one in a RBE. Why would it be? Plenty of people would just want a massage, minus the time and effort required to get into a relationship. People already pay for sex with strangers today, despite the social discouragement. I don't see why such things would stop happening just because physical goods were abundant.


Quote
"Respect from one's peers" will always be 'in demand' too... but (in most circles) you can't buy it. Same with genuine love. The demand outstrips the supply and money hasn't solved it.  
Is that a black mark against capitalism?

True respect and love can't be a service. It's simply not something you can buy.

Massages, storytelling, a juggling performance, etc. All those can be bought, and such things are already being bought today. People naturally swap services, it's a very primal behavior. The only way I can see it not happening at some point in the future would be through force or through totalitarian levels of thought control.


Quote
Quote from: westkybitcoins
despite the (monstrous, totalitarian) re-education that would be so desperately focused on to try to change human nature.
Where on earth does that notion come from?

From the idea that somehow people won't be wanting to swap services. As I said above, it's a primal instinct; the only way to consistently prevent it is through force or totalitarian levels of thought control.


Quote
I rather think the RBE will fail if one of it's main goals is to eliminate 'poverty' because the natural currency that would arise, without people even realizing it at first, would be 'reputation' & 'popularity'.
People would be sucking up to each other left right and center to 'put a good word in for me' with someone else.. to be part of the 'in' group etc.
That's how you'd get your massage. "hey.. get me invited to that party all the cool folk are going to.... I'll give you a nice back rub!"
There would still be social lepers - and they would be the new poor, but this time there isn't some other currency they can use to alleviate the suffering their social ineptitude might cause them.

Well, I agree with all that. There will always be disparities of outcome, and those at the bottom will always be our baseline for "poor." Eliminating the idea of people not having access to their basic needs is a fair enough goal, although I'm of the belief most people who focus on that have no idea how to actually achieve it. But eliminating the concept of "poverty" is a waste of time because it's a totally subjective measurment.

Bitcoin is the ultimate freedom test. It tells you who is giving lip service and who genuinely believes in it.
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In the future, books that summarize the history of money will have a line that says, “and then came bitcoin.” It is the economic singularity. And we are living in it now. - Ryan Dickherber
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ATTENTION BFL MINING NEWBS: Just got your Jalapenos in? Wondering how to get the most value for the least hassle? Give BitMinter a try! It's a smaller pool with a fair & low-fee payment method, lots of statistical feedback, and it's easier than EasyMiner! (Yes, we want your hashing power, but seriously, it IS the easiest pool to use! Sign up in seconds to try it!)
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The idea that deflation causes hoarding (to any problematic degree) is a lie used to justify theft of value from your savings.
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December 12, 2011, 03:46:13 PM
 #146

This whole RBE thing is still way too greatly dependent on the false assumption that we as a human species are not lazy. We are practically genetically programmed to collect as many resources as possible while doing as little as possible, since "doing" wears us out and makes us die faster. I am unconvinced that anyone would voluntarily go through the extremely grueling work of obtaining an advanced degree/education in any subject without knowing there will be a major payout at the end of it, which would give you an advantage over your peers. Why bother studying engineering, software development, biology, or resource allocation (economics), including all the parts you are guaranteed to have absolutely no interest in, but which are still essential in your field of interest, when you are already provided everything you need, and "someone else will just do that work for you"? From personal experience, I can tell you that brilliant people would much more likely end up slacking of, spending their days playing videogames, reading random books, or just debating random things on forums for hours rather than do any inventing work for the rest of you. Or they would end up forming an exclusive community where they can competitively to compare their levels of brilliance, use it as reputation, and invent their own barter and money system, exchanging their ideas only amongst each other, as a sort of a game to see who can collect the most "smart" points. Brilliant people are quite arrogant and competitive after all. And then the rest of you would be screwed.

Hmm. I disagree and agree.

I think it's mostly twelve years of government education that stomps out most people's natural curiosity and desire to learn. Despite that, plenty of people put in a lot of time and effort about a lot of useful things just out of interest. I'm certainly spending plenty of time learning about Bitcoin, gathering useful info I can share with others. I know people who learn about and tinker with cars, constantly improving their knowledge and skills, including the parts they don't like as much, just for the sheer joy of it, and to be able to say, "Yeah, I made this." Even those who waste their brilliant potential can unlearn their state-ingrained habits. Check out Montessori schools for an interesting look at this.

Now, as far as the idea of someone wanting to suck off my long hours of learning and hard hours of labor for free? Yeah, that's totally unacceptable, and most people will balk when that gets brought up. In fact, if it's insisted upon, you'll eventually find many people refusing to study, learn and develop themselves, even for their own enjoyment, simply because they know others will come by and take the fruits of their labor from them.

Incentives will always be needed to get people to perform at their best consistently, in a way that benefits others. Personally, I see positive, voluntary incentives (prime example: free trade) as the ideal kind.

Bitcoin is the ultimate freedom test. It tells you who is giving lip service and who genuinely believes in it.
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In the future, books that summarize the history of money will have a line that says, “and then came bitcoin.” It is the economic singularity. And we are living in it now. - Ryan Dickherber
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ATTENTION BFL MINING NEWBS: Just got your Jalapenos in? Wondering how to get the most value for the least hassle? Give BitMinter a try! It's a smaller pool with a fair & low-fee payment method, lots of statistical feedback, and it's easier than EasyMiner! (Yes, we want your hashing power, but seriously, it IS the easiest pool to use! Sign up in seconds to try it!)
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The idea that deflation causes hoarding (to any problematic degree) is a lie used to justify theft of value from your savings.
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December 12, 2011, 04:33:25 PM
 #147

westkybitcoins, note how many people here have spent hours discussing and learning about Bitcoin, for month, and yet who still don't understand economics or the basics of how money/investment/lending works. To learn a field, not only do you need to learn a lot of background and seemingly unrelated topics to understand the whole picture, topics you may find boring or tedious, but very often unless you are taught by a professional, you won't even know what topics to study, since many of these topics you won't even know exist. This likely goes for every field of study out there.

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December 12, 2011, 06:03:14 PM
 #148

westkybitcoins, note how many people here have spent hours discussing and learning about Bitcoin, for month, and yet who still don't understand economics or the basics of how money/investment/lending works. To learn a field, not only do you need to learn a lot of background and seemingly unrelated topics to understand the whole picture, topics you may find boring or tedious, but very often unless you are taught by a professional, you won't even know what topics to study, since many of these topics you won't even know exist. This likely goes for every field of study out there.

Yes, I agree that that is often the case.

I just think the evidence shows that naturally, given the opportunity, many people would learn such things and even seek out appropriate instructors, all on their own, in their particular area of interest. Provided they were free to keep the fruits of their learning and do with it as they see fit. And of course, if they just seek to reinforce their own beliefs, rather than honestly and sincerely choosing to seek truth itself, they'll hit a wall of their own making at some point too--we already have that today, I don't see it changing anytime soon.

(As an aside, sometimes it's social customs which squash this too. I imagine most parents find the idea of their child becoming "obsessed" with some obscure field that the parents find useless to be a horrifying idea. They would be quick to break their child of such a habit. Yet some have speculated Leonardo DaVinci was somewhat autistic, had OCD and was quick to ignore social customs whenever his curiosity found it convenient. It seems clear it would have been these very traits which enabled him to explore the things he did and be the genius that he was--his knowledge of anatomy being a prime example. I suspect that if the speculation is correct, then had he been born in the modern era, he wouldn't have been anything other than a frustrated oddity, not due so much to intellectual laziness, but rather because the extreme expression and pursuit of his interests wouldn't have been considered acceptable.)

Bitcoin is the ultimate freedom test. It tells you who is giving lip service and who genuinely believes in it.
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In the future, books that summarize the history of money will have a line that says, “and then came bitcoin.” It is the economic singularity. And we are living in it now. - Ryan Dickherber
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ATTENTION BFL MINING NEWBS: Just got your Jalapenos in? Wondering how to get the most value for the least hassle? Give BitMinter a try! It's a smaller pool with a fair & low-fee payment method, lots of statistical feedback, and it's easier than EasyMiner! (Yes, we want your hashing power, but seriously, it IS the easiest pool to use! Sign up in seconds to try it!)
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The idea that deflation causes hoarding (to any problematic degree) is a lie used to justify theft of value from your savings.
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December 12, 2011, 10:25:38 PM
 #149

Wow. First of all I have to say that this is something new, I was expecting this thread to descend into chaos but it has done the opposite. Some very deep discussions going on here. I thank everyone for having an open mind. It proves that the Bitcoin community is full of fairly intelligent people.

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December 12, 2011, 10:29:55 PM
 #150

The whole discussion is easily refuted:

"He who is infatuated with Man leaves persons out of account so far as that infatuation extends, and floats in an ideal, sacred interest. Man, you see, is not a person, but an ideal, a spook."


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December 12, 2011, 10:33:13 PM
 #151

Timebanks... is this similar to things such as the LETS system? Or possibly bitcoin-denominated Ripple?

Personally, that's kind of what I envisioned. Once material goods are truly abundant, the most valuable things will become human services/performances and new ideas. The only way to keep track of those things is a simple accounting setup of some sort... possibly Bitcoin-like. So this makes sense.

I don't think there will be enough people gifting massages (at least, excluding creepy, over-eager masseurs no one wants to go to) to meet the demand of people wanting them though; I could see timebanks hanging around just to deal with this sort of excess demand. We'll probably have to agree to disagree over whether machine massages would be more desirable than human contact.
Timebanks are indeed similar to LETS. In a timebank the currency is time, meaning that when someone gives you a 1-hour massage 1 time credit is transferred from your account to his/her account. It allows people to have negative balances as well, this is seen as being in debt to the community and it's perfectly okay as long as it isn't clearly exploited.

Ripple is something that I just found out about recently and I see potential there. It's sort of a LETS system on steroids. Might be the next big thing as far as organizing human services is concerned.

Quote
Now, here's where I kinda get to my point. If timebanks are around, and I'm incentivized by them, likely others would be as well. This essentially would turn timebank credits into a form of money, and even if it's small, some sort of market (complete with exchange rates, etc.) would likely develop around it. ("Oh, honey! Five timebank credits! What a great birthday present!")

And, humans being human, a certain level of status or prestige would also likely become associated with accumulated credits. ("Man, that guy has a million credits! He could provide some pretty sweet services for himself and his kids for decades!") And of course, gifting credits or transferring them to ones descendants would be possible unless there was some deliberate attempt to prevent it (which, like today, would be worked around.)

If this market is allowed to function, even if socially frowned upon, then I guess that's the end of my questions. Essentially, money could crop up in a RBE, and those wanting to make use of it wouldn't be stopped from doing so. In which case, provided getting to this ideal is completely voluntary, I don't think I have any issues with RBEs.
There are some good points here and I do agree that something like this could happen. Timebanks do not allow trading or selling the time credits in general but there are ways around it if people see a need for it. But I happen to have some experience with this and as far as I know this doesn't happen much in small scale at least. But if timebanks were used more, it's definitely possible.

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December 12, 2011, 10:39:35 PM
 #152

I rather think the RBE will fail if one of it's main goals is to eliminate 'poverty' because the natural currency that would arise, without people even realizing it at first, would be 'reputation' & 'popularity'.
People would be sucking up to each other left right and center to 'put a good word in for me' with someone else.. to be part of the 'in' group etc.
That's how you'd get your massage. "hey.. get me invited to that party all the cool folk are going to.... I'll give you a nice back rub!"
There would still be social lepers - and they would be the new poor, but this time there isn't some other currency they can use to alleviate the suffering their social ineptitude might cause them.
I agree with this. Reputation and popularity are not really going anywhere even in a RBE. I have a hard time imagining a human society where these attributes would be eliminated. But what would change is what kind of people are admired. That is for sure. These days people seem to admire people who are famous, with no regard to how this person has actually contributed to the society. I see being a scientist or an engineer a much more popular position simply because people would see them as major contributors.

In my opinion the first goal for a RBE is to achieve sustainability both ecologically and socially. This does not mean a perfect society, that will never be possible. But if we aim for this I'm fairly certain the result will be closer than if we're not even trying. Even the Star Trek RBE is less utopian than to think that our current society will be able to continue without a major civilizational collapse. This is inevitable unless we make big changes.

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December 12, 2011, 10:42:28 PM
 #153

I rather think the RBE will fail if one of it's main goals is to eliminate 'poverty' because the natural currency that would arise, without people even realizing it at first, would be 'reputation' & 'popularity'.
People would be sucking up to each other left right and center to 'put a good word in for me' with someone else.. to be part of the 'in' group etc.
That's how you'd get your massage. "hey.. get me invited to that party all the cool folk are going to.... I'll give you a nice back rub!"
There would still be social lepers - and they would be the new poor, but this time there isn't some other currency they can use to alleviate the suffering their social ineptitude might cause them.
I agree with this. Reputation and popularity are not really going anywhere even in a RBE. I have a hard time imagining a human society where these attributes would be eliminated. But what would change is what kind of people are admired. That is for sure. These days people seem to admire people who are famous, with no regard to how this person has actually contributed to the society. I see being a scientist or an engineer a much more popular position simply because people would see them as major contributors.

You just don't get it, do you? The INDIVIDUAL desires who she prefers regardless of your preferences. You cannot couple all people under the ideal of Man. It is simply irrational for who we stand for in the end is only ourselves. We only act because it brings us pleasure. You cannot have people enjoy things indiscriminately or under a different discrimination entirely.

Is a man not entitled to love how he wishes? Is this choice not what defines a man in the first place? If I choose to revere sluts over scientists, am I not entitled to do so?

I hold that it is absolute choice that defines a sentient being. To me it is through choice that one is free.

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December 12, 2011, 11:08:10 PM
 #154

This whole RBE thing is still way too greatly dependent on the false assumption that we as a human species are not lazy. We are practically genetically programmed to collect as many resources as possible while doing as little as possible, since "doing" wears us out and makes us die faster.
This is incorrect. It's exactly this attribute in humans that has been one of the most important incentives driving our technological development. We are lazy therefore we are motivated in making our lives easier. Technology is all about making our lives easier. RBE does not change this, in fact it takes away the restrictions we have today. No longer is your free, creative time conflicting with the need to do some mundane job to get money. Not that all jobs are mundane, some of us are lucky to have a dream job, but that is not very common.

Even though we have a massive conflict between what we want to do and what we have to do, people still contribute massive amounts of time to voluntary work and things like open source software projects where they do not get any kind of monetary incentive. In fact they get a negative monetary incentive, they could be working a payed job instead of doing that.

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I am unconvinced that anyone would voluntarily go through the extremely grueling work of obtaining an advanced degree/education in any subject without knowing there will be a major payout at the end of it, which would give you an advantage over your peers. Why bother studying engineering, software development, biology, or resource allocation (economics), including all the parts you are guaranteed to have absolutely no interest in, but which are still essential in your field of interest, when you are already provided everything you need, and "someone else will just do that work for you"?
Maybe because it's interesting to learn new things? Maybe because I happen to like a certain field and thus would like to work on it in my free time? This is a prime example of what I call corrupted incentives. When people need a monetary payout at the end for doing something, it's a sad situation. The natural curiosity and creativity of a human being has all but died at that point. This is not in "human nature", it's something that happens when you grow in the kind of society we live in. It's not a coincidence that small children are very interested in everything and once they get a bit older they start (usually) hating school etc. One of the reasons for this is that our whole educational system is not feeding the intrinsic incentives people have, it's killing them.

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From personal experience, I can tell you that brilliant people would much more likely end up slacking of, spending their days playing videogames, reading random books, or just debating random things on forums for hours rather than do any inventing work for the rest of you. Or they would end up forming an exclusive community where they can competitively to compare their levels of brilliance, use it as reputation, and invent their own barter and money system, exchanging their ideas only amongst each other, as a sort of a game to see who can collect the most "smart" points. Brilliant people are quite arrogant and competitive after all. And then the rest of you would be screwed.
Well, I claim that the main reason why this happens is that there is nothing better to do. The creativity of these people is not being tapped which is why they spend their time doing something unproductive. This happens to me all the time, but the problem is not that I don't want to do something more productive, I just don't know what it could be. I've studied quite a lot of things completely voluntarily simply to find a profession that gives me high autonomy, the right kind of challenge, and does something that I find helpful to society. This has proven to be VERY HARD in a monetary system. To compensate for this I've been forced to do unproductive work to get money and use my free time as productively as I can.

People in general are not happy to just slack off. They do that if they are either tired or have nothing better to do. One prime example of this are people who work long hours doing mundane jobs and then they come home, can you really expect them to do anything but lay on the couch watching TV and eat? The fact that people slack off so much is not because of some fault in human nature, there are many things that can negatively affect this. For example corrupted incentives, lack of challenging activities or excess amount of tiring work.

One more thing, from my experience a lot of people do work in a field they are actually interested in. In this case the problem is usually with the job itself, not the work. It can be a number of things, no autonomy, crappy boss, too long hours etc. If people had more choice in what way they want to contribute to the field they like, I definitely see people wanting to work even without an extra monetary incentive.

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December 12, 2011, 11:15:21 PM
 #155

This whole RBE thing is still way too greatly dependent on the false assumption that we as a human species are not lazy. We are practically genetically programmed to collect as many resources as possible while doing as little as possible, since "doing" wears us out and makes us die faster.
humans, We are lazy therefore we are motivated, our lives easier, we have today, we have a massive conflict between what we want to do and what we have to do, People in general, human nature, from my experience a lot of people do work, If people could have...

He owns humanity, everybody. Listen to this guy. He owns you, he knows what you want before you know it. All of your desires are his. Submit.

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December 12, 2011, 11:23:53 PM
 #156

I think it's mostly twelve years of government education that stomps out most people's natural curiosity and desire to learn. Despite that, plenty of people put in a lot of time and effort about a lot of useful things just out of interest. I'm certainly spending plenty of time learning about Bitcoin, gathering useful info I can share with others. I know people who learn about and tinker with cars, constantly improving their knowledge and skills, including the parts they don't like as much, just for the sheer joy of it, and to be able to say, "Yeah, I made this." Even those who waste their brilliant potential can unlearn their state-ingrained habits. Check out Montessori schools for an interesting look at this.

Now, as far as the idea of someone wanting to suck off my long hours of learning and hard hours of labor for free? Yeah, that's totally unacceptable, and most people will balk when that gets brought up. In fact, if it's insisted upon, you'll eventually find many people refusing to study, learn and develop themselves, even for their own enjoyment, simply because they know others will come by and take the fruits of their labor from them.

Incentives will always be needed to get people to perform at their best consistently, in a way that benefits others. Personally, I see positive, voluntary incentives (prime example: free trade) as the ideal kind.
+1

I agree with this. Incentives are obviously needed, my view is that we should really nurture the natural creativity and curiosity children have. With that approach I believe it would be possible to organize work based on real interest, as long as people get enough pay to have a decent livelihood (or in the case of RBE, simply the livelihood). It's very important though that this is the approach from the start. Scientific studies on motivations have proven that the original interest people have in any subject lessens once you put monetary reward in the picture. Even if you remove the monetary reward later, people will never be as interested as they originally were, because they are expecting a monetary reward.

Also it's interesting that for any job that requires advanced problem solving (the jobs that can't easily be automated), monetary rewards, especially predictable ones, cause people to perform worse. Thinking about the money takes away from our brain capacity to solve the problem and for any advanced work people will actually be more productive if you can provide different incentives. For people working at a factory line this is different and monetary incentives have been proven to work but that kind of jobs are on their way out.

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December 12, 2011, 11:25:19 PM
 #157

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zeboqg4t9vs

Just answer one question of mine: Is this what you want?

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December 12, 2011, 11:34:41 PM
 #158

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zeboqg4t9vs

Just answer one question of mine: Is this what you want?
Your posts of late seem to lack content. But the answer is no. I want to maximize the personal freedom people have, I advocate an anarchistic society. The difference is that I see the need to acquire purchasing power to be able to live as a very archaic approach to society. It's very limiting and causes a wide variety of problems. I do not see it as a true 21st century approach. This is why I advocate RBE.

I also advocate Bitcoin but not because it's ideal, I like it because it's a concrete solution that at least solves some problems and gives people the ability to not have to rely on outdated structures such as the governments and banks of today. RBE is more of a vision of the future and less of a practical solution at this point.

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December 12, 2011, 11:38:02 PM
 #159

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zeboqg4t9vs

Just answer one question of mine: Is this what you want?
Your posts of late seem to lack content. But the answer is no. I want to maximize the personal freedom people have, I advocate an anarchistic society. The difference is that I see the need to acquire purchasing power to be able to live as a very archaic approach to society. It's very limiting and causes a wide variety of problems. I do not see it as a true 21st century approach. This is why I advocate RBE.

I also advocate Bitcoin but not because it's ideal, I like it because it's a concrete solution that at least solves some problems and gives people the ability to not have to rely on outdated structures such as the governments and banks of today. RBE is more of a vision of the future and less of a practical solution at this point.
I don't like to make generalizations about the human species especially when it comes down to using shallow science.

Anyways, very well. I see where this is coming from.

@HarveyAlpha (https://twitter.com/#!/HarveyAlpha) | It would be foolish to assert that there is no power above mine. Only the attitude that I take toward it will be quite another than that of the religious age: I shall be the enemy of every higher power.
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December 13, 2011, 01:48:27 AM
 #160

It's like the discovery of how fractal geometry redefines natural sciences.

Somewhat ironic choice of analogy... most scientists do not take Mandelbrot's claims seriously.

The printing press heralded the end of the Dark Ages and made the Enlightenment possible, but it took another three centuries before any country managed to put freedom of the press beyond the reach of legislators.  So it may take a while before cryptocurrencies are free of the AML-NSA-KYC surveillance plague.
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