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Online Comics => Escape From Terra => Topic started by: Leviathan on October 31, 2008, 04:55:32 am

Title: Gotta love it
Post by: Leviathan on October 31, 2008, 04:55:32 am
First, why am I the one starting all the threads for this comic?   ::)

You get fined (or worse) for making agist, sexist, racist, or really any other descriminatory remarks in that terran society.  Except if you're talking about a capitalist.  Derogatory remarks to or about someone whose crime is to engage in free commerce are just fine, hah!  Reminds me of every conversation I've had with people who advocate market control or destruction.  They'll cry foul at all those fascists who they disagree with, and then advocate *drumroll* fascism.  "Don't oppress us!  Now here's all the ways I want to oppress you and anybody else I think is an abuser of society."

The funny part is they can't even conceive of some of the measures of dictatorial control that would be necessary for a monarchy to really be a monarchy in that storyline.  They didn't come up with all the finery rules for an audience before a king.  When they come before him, they don't even think to ask for identification.  They ask for the business cards.  And if the UWRA types weren't probably from a world where arbitration has been annihilated, they'd have thought about that part of the sign that hasn't had whiteout applied to it for the occasion, "arbitration services", hah!  The culture clash for that is just incredibly extreme, heh.

Okay, question.  One of the problems I've been contemplating for situations like seasteading and space colonies is the fact that some aspects under current engineering do not lend themselves readily to modular ownership and control.  The "commons" in EfT are things like the roadways.  Not that they themselves are necessarily *directly* tied to this issue, as they aren't in real life.  But the atmospheric systems are.  Without easy compartmentalization of the atmospheric systems, each segment owned and charged-for by its owner by whatever mechanism they wish to employ and the safety of each segment dependent only on its own integrity.  If any one segment of an interconnected system like that fails in space, they all go down.  And if all interconnected segments like that are owned by the same group, it would tend to result in compulsory taxation (like the socialists try to say, if you use the public services you should be expected to contribute to their construction and upkeep) and an easy pathway for hydraulic despotism to spawn (you don't follow my rules, you don't get to use my resource, even though you have no choice but to use it or die).  Only if atmospheric reclamation and having equally vacuum-safe construction is all pretty much zero-cost would it be easy to have commons like that without these issues.  Sort of like how replenishment and/or reclamation out here right now only happens to a piece of land if it's privately owned, because it takes significant resources to do so but any who would be contributing to "the commons" reaps almost no rewards from it.  And even if someone starts a charity replenishment effort, others will just strip it bare and pollute the crap out of it (into it?) again.  Curious what the solution to that issue would be here?
Title: Re: Gotta love it
Post by: wdg3rd on October 31, 2008, 06:38:31 am
First, why am I the one starting all the threads for this comic?   ::)
Looking at the top of this forum, you've now started three out of six.
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You get fined (or worse) for making agist, sexist, racist, or really any other descriminatory remarks in that terran society.  Except if you're talking about a capitalist.  Derogatory remarks to or about someone whose crime is to engage in free commerce are just fine, hah!  Reminds me of every conversation I've had with people who advocate market control or destruction.  They'll cry foul at all those fascists who they disagree with, and then advocate *drumroll* fascism.  "Don't oppress us!  Now here's all the ways I want to oppress you and anybody else I think is an abuser of society."
Merely an extension of the current trend.  Note that hanging Sarah Palin in effigy is a Halloween decoration, but hanging Barrack Obama in effigy is a hate crime.  (Not that I like either of them).
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The funny part is they can't even conceive of some of the measures of dictatorial control that would be necessary for a monarchy to really be a monarchy in that storyline.  They didn't come up with all the finery rules for an audience before a king.  When they come before him, they don't even think to ask for identification.  They ask for the business cards.  And if the UWRA types weren't probably from a world where arbitration has been annihilated, they'd have thought about that part of the sign that hasn't had whiteout applied to it for the occasion, "arbitration services", hah!  The culture clash for that is just incredibly extreme, heh.
Hey, they've been busy.
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Okay, question.  One of the problems I've been contemplating for situations like seasteading and space colonies is the fact that some aspects under current engineering do not lend themselves readily to modular ownership and control.  The "commons" in EfT are things like the roadways.  Not that they themselves are necessarily *directly* tied to this issue, as they aren't in real life.  But the atmospheric systems are.  Without easy compartmentalization of the atmospheric systems, each segment owned and charged-for by its owner by whatever mechanism they wish to employ and the safety of each segment dependent only on its own integrity.  If any one segment of an interconnected system like that fails in space, they all go down.  And if all interconnected segments like that are owned by the same group, it would tend to result in compulsory taxation (like the socialists try to say, if you use the public services you should be expected to contribute to their construction and upkeep) and an easy pathway for hydraulic despotism to spawn (you don't follow my rules, you don't get to use my resource, even though you have no choice but to use it or die).  Only if atmospheric reclamation and having equally vacuum-safe construction is all pretty much zero-cost would it be easy to have commons like that without these issues.  Sort of like how replenishment and/or reclamation out here right now only happens to a piece of land if it's privately owned, because it takes significant resources to do so but any who would be contributing to "the commons" reaps almost no rewards from it.  And even if someone starts a charity replenishment effort, others will just strip it bare and pollute the crap out of it (into it?) again.  Curious what the solution to that issue would be here?
The problem of The Commons is one of the oldest debates in the history of anarchism and libertarianism.
Title: Re: Gotta love it
Post by: Monkt on October 31, 2008, 10:49:33 am
I get this strange feeling that they are being screwed with.
Title: Re: Gotta love it
Post by: Frank B. on October 31, 2008, 02:27:49 pm
First, why am I the one starting all the threads for this comic?   ::)

Well, you've started half of them.  ;)

Okay, question.  One of the problems I've been contemplating for situations like seasteading and space colonies is the fact that some aspects under current engineering do not lend themselves readily to modular ownership and control.  The "commons" in EfT are things like the roadways.  Not that they themselves are necessarily *directly* tied to this issue, as they aren't in real life.  But the atmospheric systems are.  Without easy compartmentalization of the atmospheric systems, each segment owned and charged-for by its owner by whatever mechanism they wish to employ and the safety of each segment dependent only on its own integrity.  If any one segment of an interconnected system like that fails in space, they all go down.  And if all interconnected segments like that are owned by the same group, it would tend to result in compulsory taxation (like the socialists try to say, if you use the public services you should be expected to contribute to their construction and upkeep) and an easy pathway for hydraulic despotism to spawn (you don't follow my rules, you don't get to use my resource, even though you have no choice but to use it or die).  Only if atmospheric reclamation and having equally vacuum-safe construction is all pretty much zero-cost would it be easy to have commons like that without these issues.  Sort of like how replenishment and/or reclamation out here right now only happens to a piece of land if it's privately owned, because it takes significant resources to do so but any who would be contributing to "the commons" reaps almost no rewards from it.  And even if someone starts a charity replenishment effort, others will just strip it bare and pollute the crap out of it (into it?) again.  Curious what the solution to that issue would be here?

When the Russians crashed their freight hauler into the US Spectre module, they closed off that module.  A high degree of redundancy is required when you don't have an effectively open system environment.  In a tight closed system environment, economics is a harsh mistress.  Regardless of political will, you can't get around that reality.  On Ceres, like on Mir, each segment, regardless of who owns which and how many will be built to be able to be isolated from the rest on day one.  Thus, your segment can be "safed" from your neighbor's problems.  The problem they had when this happened on Mir was they had a tragedy of the commons non-management problem with a lot of power and data cables run through the hatch ways ignoring the full economic repercussions of such poor practices.  So, to save their lives they litteraly had to cut all of that out of the way to close the hatch.  They don't do that on the ISS because of what happened on Mir.  They also planned for other ways of running new data and power externally to avoid what necessitated the Mir problem.

I imagine folks living on Ceres would have either thought ahead, or learned the less the hard way (remember most of the first 100 died).  On Ceres, the owner of the problem segment would have to do what any private individual has to do to raise money and pay for repairs.  If their segment incorporated a commonly used path, then those who commonly use it will look to help pay for repair as it is worth their while.  If a segment owner (or owner of segments) did a poor job of building and maintaining their segments with common passage, people would be less inclined to use those segments and invest/purchase better paths/segments.  Remember, free markets favor productive spending over non-productive spending.  They have to.

Title: Re: Gotta love it
Post by: Leviathan on October 31, 2008, 07:26:35 pm
Frank:

Well, the weirdness is I did just check, no airlock-type installations have been drawn yet.  Drawn roadways have been fairly seamless.  No signs of vertically-rising barrier locks, swivelling-disk valve locks, submarine-hatch-style locks, iris locks, or vertically-descending barrier locks.  I suppose some future-techy method of sealing segments in the event of larger damage could be used, heh.  Such as, say, the pseudoglass reacting like a cut vein collapsing.  But are the roadway segments pictured part of the same business ownership/roadway-lease/easement contract?  I get that there can be multiple owners, but the larger segments pictured so far are all the same basic aesthetic for the pseudoglass, and I wouldn't necessarily expect different networks to all have the same solution to low-grav locomotion.

I am suddenly picturing one possible alleviation solution for rock-induced failures.  Skyscan companies, clearing rocks that are set to collide with their customers' property for a fee.  The quality would necessarily correspond to how small their detection and redirection/destruction threshold is.  Rock forecasting like we do weather forecasting.  Etc.

Monkt:

Ya think?  Naw, they really have a Monarch who rules them with an iron fist, taxing them to expand his own grandiose palace  ;)

wdg3rd:

I was talking about the current practitioners.  I've had a lot of arguments lately, before I gave it up as pointless, with "classicalist" anarchists.  People who don't believe in the validity of property, who believe an employer is an example of a fascist authoritarian because he or she requests in exchange for providing the worker with valuable capital resources that they contribute equivalent value to the business.  Which would entail showing up when multiple workers can actually contribute to each others' projects, putting in sufficient volume and quantity to justify the expense of the worker, things like that.  The fact that most CEOs put at least half again as many hours per day in as the hourly workers (the CEO who spends all day, every day at the golf course or sipping martinis is pretty mythological, his company would go down in flames around him and/or the board would fire him for contributing zero value to the company), that their value is usually in direct proportion to their salary as Ben&Jerry found when they tried to restrict the wage gap at the company when they left, makes no impact on these types.

As far as them not being able to put forward the full fascist image, my point is that they're so far removed from it they can barely imagine how an oppressive tyrant would act, heh.

As far as the tragedy of the commons, I'm just saying true commons pretty well requires an authoritarian regime to snag a bit of property, tell everybody nobody has exclusive access to it, and set up any available rules for people to loot them if they're not "enclosed".  In a free society the closest to a "commons" is charity-run parks and such, where to keep up donations the charity has to put the resources into maintaining them to justify continued contributions, and businesses that expect people who aren't explicitly invited to use a piece of property, such as a toll road.  It's why you can see the dividing line between Haiti and the Dominican Republic from the air.  Due to the horrible ownership rules in Haiti, almost the entire country is "the commons".  Right across the border, people can own the land and so invest in preservation, replenishment, and other sustainable methods that preserve the value of the land.
Title: Re: Gotta love it
Post by: Frank B. on November 03, 2008, 03:01:18 pm
Well, the weirdness is I did just check, no airlock-type installations have been drawn yet.  Drawn roadways have been fairly seamless.  No signs of vertically-rising barrier locks, swivelling-disk valve locks, submarine-hatch-style locks, iris locks, or vertically-descending barrier locks.  I suppose some future-techy method of sealing segments in the event of larger damage could be used, heh.  Such as, say, the pseudoglass reacting like a cut vein collapsing.  But are the roadway segments pictured part of the same business ownership/roadway-lease/easement contract?  I get that there can be multiple owners, but the larger segments pictured so far are all the same basic aesthetic for the pseudoglass, and I wouldn't necessarily expect different networks to all have the same solution to low-grav locomotion.

Well, I have to admit that I'm guessing here.  I may be the publisher, but I'm not one of the creators.  You have to consider that the panels you see are static shots of scenes, and all manner of things exist outside the frame.  It could be just dumb luck that non of the shots, so far, have revealed any indications of segment transition points, such as the more mechanical locks you suggest.  As far as I know, there are no force fields, or other exotic seal devices.  Or there could be some other tech which negates a need for segment segregation.  Perhaps I can coax Scott or Sandy to comment.
Title: Re: Gotta love it
Post by: Leviathan on November 03, 2008, 05:59:11 pm
Too many Biesers on the project?  :P

Sure, here's a cattleprod if they need any encouragement  :D  Or I can just wait if it's planned to be pictured at some point.
Title: Re: Gotta love it
Post by: Monkt on November 04, 2008, 12:34:17 am
That was amazing.
Title: Re: Gotta love it
Post by: SandySandfort on November 04, 2008, 10:29:40 am
Well, I have to admit that I'm guessing here.  I may be the publisher, but I'm not one of the creators.  You have to consider that the panels you see are static shots of scenes, and all manner of things exist outside the frame.  It could be just dumb luck that non of the shots, so far, have revealed any indications of segment transition points, such as the more mechanical locks you suggest.  As far as I know, there are no force fields, or other exotic seal devices.  Or there could be some other tech which negates a need for segment segregation.  Perhaps I can coax Scott or Sandy to comment.


Frank has got it mostly right except about most of the original colonists dying. That's only what they told Guy and Fiorella. (By the way, much of what little Babbette told them was a fabrication too.) The only "commons" on Ceres are unused portions of the surface ice. BTW, the streets are no more a commons than are the roads in Disney World nor the parking lot at Wal-Marts. You have seen some airlocks, you just didn't know that was what you were looking at. As for blowouts and such, that is all taken care of by air skin nanobots.
Title: Re: Gotta love it
Post by: Frank B. on November 04, 2008, 04:42:43 pm
Frank has got it mostly right except about most of the original colonists dying. That's only what they told Guy and Fiorella. (By the way, much of what little Babbette told them was a fabrication too.) The only "commons" on Ceres are unused portions of the surface ice. BTW, the streets are no more a commons than are the roads in Disney World nor the parking lot at Wal-Marts. You have seen some airlocks, you just didn't know that was what you were looking at. As for blowouts and such, that is all taken care of by air skin nanobots.

Like I said, I'm the publisher.  What the hell do I know.  ;D
Title: Re: Gotta love it
Post by: Sean Roach on November 04, 2008, 07:59:47 pm
If you go to a mall, who pays for the air conditioning?
If you buy nothing while visiting the mall, are you charged a small fee for the music you listened to in the hall?
And yet, the mall owners, and businesses seem to have no problem with the various visitors who buy nothing on any given trip...just walk around the concourse.

How many McDonalds have you heard of complaining because you tossed a Taco Bell cup in their outside trash can after visiting the drive through?

McDonalds benefits more by having a customer who otherwise would feel obligated to revisit Taco Bell, so they could throw away the remnants of the last meal.  It'd be worth more to neighboring, but different, businesses to share connections, and air, just so customers at either one might casually drift over and shop at the other.  And even if two business have the exact stock and trade, they both want to associate closely with the third that doesn't, which has no positive incentive to shun either one.  Two rental places, one restaurant?  Do YOU want to be the one who doesn't allow free flow between the restaurant and you just because the other rental place connects there too?

The thing to consider isn't just "tragedy of the commons", but also Metcalfe's law.  The value of a network is proportional to the square of the number of nodes on it.  Besides, "tragedy of the commons" is a reflection of the overutilization of a free resource.  When a resource is charged for, in sync with its value, waste goes down.  Imagine how many people would take longer showers, or wouldn't bother to turn off the tap while brushing their teeth, if they were told the water bill was a flat fee.

The only issue I see with roads and such is it would tend to be a natural monopoly.  Whoever has the road can, do a degree, dictate terms as there is no alternative choice of transit except to move.  If the road operators decide they don't like you, you're stuck.  The same goes for any resource that's provided by right of way, (including water, gas, electricity, telephony...less so now.)  This gives the road management disproportionate power to dictate terms, (although they still have to balance keeping enough traffic on the road as a whole to keep the road profitable...)
Can you imagine someone coming by your house and saying "Our research shows you're a dirty libertarian.  Either shut up about that nonsense on all forums, or we're cutting off the power to your house.  We'll not serve people who mouth off about anarchy and such."?
No Shirt
No Shoes
No Service
Title: Re: Gotta love it
Post by: Leviathan on November 04, 2008, 09:55:12 pm
Frank has got it mostly right except about most of the original colonists dying. That's only what they told Guy and Fiorella. (By the way, much of what little Babbette told them was a fabrication too.) The only "commons" on Ceres are unused portions of the surface ice. BTW, the streets are no more a commons than are the roads in Disney World nor the parking lot at Wal-Marts. You have seen some airlocks, you just didn't know that was what you were looking at. As for blowouts and such, that is all taken care of by air skin nanobots.

I have no illusions, whatsoever, that the truth to fabrication ratio in what they're hearing is even close to 50/50.  But that part about the "air skin nanobots"...  Essentially they all have spacesuits, they're just, uhh, better than skin-tight?  I recognize door-locks, those are basic, on the outside of dwellings and businesses.  It's road-locks I can't see any of in the SL.  Unless, as stated, they're future-techy and I'm sure the details on that, if story-relevant, will come out eventually.  Also didn't figure the roads were a true commons.  Just a "closest equivalent in a free market to it", which means mostly-general access with one or another method of paying for itself.  Which is assuming it even has maintenance costs..  I guess I should stop making tech assumptions since the moment nanotech enters the picture, the limits are pretty much the storage and processing capacity of the nanites, the energy going to the nanites, and the limits of the manipulators on the nanites. 

Speaking of future detailing and the room available for it, how long is this one planned to be, if there's a distinct plan in place rather than an ongoing project?  TPB was 185, Roswell 265 if re-assembled from book "lines" to pages the way the 63 pages of "A Drug War Carol" work.  Timepeeper 120.  How much opportunity will we have to explore the world of escape from terra?  If it comes down to "civil war", that's an expensive fight to wage uphill when Terra has bankrupted itself through socialism and nanny-statism, so should be deliciously long-lasting.  Or is it estimated that there won't be enough of a following to justify a massive arc the way studio foglio is running girl genius?  The numbering standard for filenames implies it'll be divided by chapters, at least.  And that you're leaving enough room for double-digit chapter numbers, and triple-digit pagenumbers.  Please say it'll be a fairly long-running series?  Seems interesting enough so far.

Sean, McDonalds' trashcans aren't really a commons, any more than the causeways in shopping malls are.  The restaurant trashcans would probably be willing to accept competitor trash even with private trash disposal.  Because you're usually going there to pay for it anyway, and it at least gets you hanging around so you're more likely to make a purchase.  In a mall, even though rarely do malls harass non-buyers, there are almost no true non-buyers.  And even if someone is a non-buyer, chances are they're going to be free advertisement to buyers or eventually become buyers.  Regardless, the AC and other "common" utilities within a mall are paid for as a function of the rents in the mall.  Which has resulted in things on a mall-based scale going south.  I recall a mall when I was in Florida.  Big place.  Beautiful architecture.  Idiot management, at least initially.  They literally ran out every shop and had to sell it to another developer.  And one of their big-shop outlets got retooled to be a call center.  Putting aside the way shopping malls as made are largely the result of legislation for the moment, they have been known to pull the same kinds of extortionism and overbearing management that governments normally pull.  My curiosity was what setup the writers figured they were using that avoided it.
Title: Re: Gotta love it
Post by: SandySandfort on November 04, 2008, 10:33:34 pm
Speaking of future detailing and the room available for it, how long is this one planned to be, if there's a distinct plan in place rather than an ongoing project?
Escape From Terra has no planned "run." It will last as long as I can keep pumping out good short stories to be converted into comic format and as long as readers continue to enjoy what Scott, Lee and and I create.
Title: Re: Gotta love it
Post by: KBCraig on November 05, 2008, 02:47:17 pm
The only issue I see with roads and such is it would tend to be a natural monopoly.  Whoever has the road can, do a degree, dictate terms as there is no alternative choice of transit except to move.

You were really on a great track there! But then, you fell into the "But what about the roads?" trap.

Roads, in an anarcho-capitalist society, would be just like the mall air conditioning in your example. Merchants with stores would be useless without access, so they would join together to provide roads, so that their customers could visit their stores. They would build where customers could have easy access, and add access where needed. (Quite unlike today's "incentivized" system.)

When things became too congested, land on the outskirts would grow more attractive, until the owners would build new stores and new roads to access them. And so forth, and so forth, until even the long lonely cross-continent highways were provided for, so that the merchants could reliably receive their goods.

Title: Re: Gotta love it
Post by: Leviathan on November 05, 2008, 06:10:29 pm
I didn't really fall into the trap, so much as recognize that roads that at least are appearing as a continuous system run possibly by one company, they may have fallen into the trap of not paying attention to who controls a hydraulic resource. 

In truth, that generally does manage itself as well (long logic behind it), but would be likely to result in some roadways that would probably seem very strange laid next to the government-standardized strips of asphalt we have now.  Hence the slight confusion at what doesn't look too different from a set of lined roadways with maybe a bit of a sportier appearance sans curbs, even with a much lower stringency guideline for what is allowed to drive on/above them.  And what looks pretty well standardized and continuous rather than, as stated, segmented and looking capable of compartmentalization.  Might be a bit different in color, heh.
Title: Re: Gotta love it
Post by: Sean Roach on November 05, 2008, 09:39:29 pm
What I'm saying is if a distinct entity controls the roads, they have the power to dictate terms once it becomes too costly for the served to relocate.  I was comparing roads to malls, which are owned distinct from the shops, and in fact lease to the shops.  Once you've sunk funds into the building, and once you've developed a clientele that knows to look for you there, picking up and moving because it now costs more to have access to the road, or the access rules now state certain of your merchandise must not be displayed in the front windows any longer, or sold at all, becomes problematic.

If, on the flip side, the right of way is managed collectively, you will eventually get a majority that would just assume some minority leave, and will force them to, given the ability to do so.

And yes, I'm fully aware a McDonalds trash can isn't a commons.  That's part of the point, that no one complains if you use it as a commons, within reason, as you're being there generally benefits the business that pays for it anyway.  Same for the statements about malls and mall walkers.


Minor edit to clarify the second paragraph.
Title: Re: Gotta love it
Post by: ttogreh on February 23, 2010, 09:31:30 am
All right, this is my first post, and it is in a thread that is over 120 days old. I realize that might be slightly against forum etiquette. However, the contributors to this thread started the debate on "the tragedy of the commons", and I would like to continue it.

Right now, the people of Ceres have an expanding settlment with a single metropolitan area, Ceres City. There are homesteaders that use their own fusion reactors, air reclamators, and water recyclers and drive in to the metropolitan area for supplies that they cannot produce on their own, either through choice or inability.

However, Ceres city is expanding. Eventually the homesteaders will have a choice to either tie in to the "grid", or let the metropolitan area expand around their stakes and live in autonomy, sort of like "township islands"; these are enclaves that are surrounded by another municipality but do not use certain municipal utilities, such as water or sewer service.

Now, this works fine for now, but eventually Ceres city will expand to meet itself. Once that happens, the homesteaders that have not tied in will have a unique choice. Their homes will be the only "undeveloped" areas on Ceres, and will likely have developers beating down their airlocks with offers for their deeds. Eventually all homesteaders or at least "enough" homesteaders will be bought out, and Ceres will be one sprawling metropolis.

When that happens, Ceres will have a fully matured "renters economy". That is to say, there will be an elite class that derives its wealth not from labor, and not from the direct use of its capital, but from the allowance of others to labor on capital that does not belong to the laborers.

This elite class, will essentially, get its "money for nothing and its chicks for free", as the song goes.

Now, obviously, the renters will have costs, but basic economics will tell you that the renters will consolidate into a natural monopoly and utilize economies of scale so that the least amount of effort will exact the greatest amount of profit.

Now, maybe anarcho-capitalists are ok with the idea of idle rich road owners that do nothing but get rich from the efforts of their great-grandparents, but they might not like the practice of it. See, renters economies distort the labor and capital economies in a similar way to taxation. Indeed, one could say that rent seekers would be the replacement to revenuers.

So, explain to me how a fully matured metropolitan area would not develop a renters economy, or conversely, explain to me how a renters economy is not taxation under a new label.
Title: Re: Gotta love it
Post by: SandySandfort on February 24, 2010, 09:49:12 am
Good topic, but your assumptions are wrong. This is partially because they have not come in the strip yet. In other cases. Beyond that, your erroneous economic assumptions are all your own..

Right now, the people of Ceres have an expanding settlment with a single metropolitan area, Ceres City. There are homesteaders that use their own fusion reactors, air reclamators, and water recyclers and drive in to the metropolitan area for supplies that they cannot produce on their own, either through choice or inability. However, Ceres city is expanding....

There are other settlements, including built up areas at the poles. Of course there are residents who live in the settlements and not on seasteads. Reggie and the Guzmán family, for example. Your first questionable assumption is that the settlements on Ceres are expanding. What leads you to this conclusion?

Eventually the homesteaders will have a choice to either tie in to the "grid", or let the metropolitan area expand around their stakes and live in autonomy, sort of like "township islands"; these are enclaves that are surrounded by another municipality but do not use certain municipal utilities, such as water or sewer service.

The settlements sit on rocky islands in the Cererean (ice) Sea. The islands are not getting any bigger. Of course, there could be (and are) seasteads that run mom and pop stores, but the land is not expanding. Eventually, an airskin system will cover Ceres and the seas will be melted. Then, there will be something of a commons question, though, plans are being made for that eventuality. If the strip goes on long enough, we will discuss it. However for the present, there are only about 5000 full-time Ceres residents spread over 360,000 square kilometers of ice ocean.

Now, this works fine for now, but eventually Ceres city will expand to meet itself. Once that happens, the homesteaders that have not tied in will have a unique choice. Their homes will be the only "undeveloped" areas on Ceres, and will likely have developers beating down their airlocks with offers for their deeds. Eventually all homesteaders or at least "enough" homesteaders will be bought out, and Ceres will be one sprawling metropolis.

Again, SEAsteads are just floating ocean habitats. There are no deeds to be bought out. On the islands, there exists an informal "deed" recognition of ownership and transfer.

When that happens, Ceres will have a fully matured "renters economy". That is to say, there will be an elite class that derives its wealth not from labor, and not from the direct use of its capital, but from the allowance of others to labor on capital that does not belong to the laborers.

Nice Marxist rhetoric, but Marxism has been shown to be wrong so many times in so many places, one wonders why people keep trotting out this tired, broken old whore as a superior worldview. Plus, I don't think anyone could seriously promote a system that killed 100,000,000 innocent people in the 29th Century.

This elite class, will essentially, get its "money for nothing and its chicks for free", as the song goes.

You can only have an elite class (not based on merit) in a statist system. You can have rich people, but without a government to be bought off to use force to maintain power over the plebes, that power is very ephemeral. "Money can't buy you love," as the song goes.   ;D

Now, obviously, the renters will have costs, but basic economics will tell you that the renters will consolidate into a natural monopoly and utilize economies of scale so that the least amount of effort will exact the greatest amount of profit.

Again, in a stateless, society, there are dis-economies of scale. The nimble economic "mammals" will run circles around the ponderous bureaucratic "dinosaurs." Think of it as a Laffer Curve. Every type of enterprise has a natural optimal size. Below that size, there are economies of scale. Above that size, there are dis-economies of scale.

Here's another "natural" analogy. If bigger is better, why are there no 5000 pound lions?

Get it now?
Title: Re: Gotta love it
Post by: Gillsing on February 24, 2010, 02:47:29 pm
I've read the explanation for why there are no 5000 pound lions. It has to do with the way our muscles work. Basically the area of a cross section of a muscle determines its strength, so you get 'two-dimensional' strength. Mass on the other hand is three-dimensional, and thus the bigger you get, the more your mass will outgrow your strength. Which of course becomes highly inefficient.

I don't really know what that has to do with businesses though. As far as I know, the bigger a business is, the better it'll be at providing the kind of stable and dependable goods and services that people enjoy, and usually at cheaper prices as well, since the suppliers also like to have stable and reliable customers and would most likely be willing to give a discount. And building a machine to create a million units is a lot more efficient than building one to create only a thousand. Long term and large scale tend to bring the price per unit down, and protect against sudden bankruptcy due to temporary bad conditions.

Granted, in an economy where everything can be created at a whim, and the most valuable thing you have to trade is your clever ideas, I could see how bigger wouldn't necessarily be better. But I don't know for sure that a lone genius is actually better at creating something useful than a huge staff of scientists would be. In a comic, sure, but in real life? Ideas are a dime a dozen, but to actually create something usually takes resources.

But I guess that if a monopoly isn't forced, but rather evolves, it's just a monopoly for practical purposes, and still allows a lot of smaller businesses that cater to those who just can't stand the same stuff that most everyone thinks is fine. And maybe any such monopoly would always break up as soon as struggles within the monopoly become more important than struggles against external competition? Conquering the world is fun and all, but when you are the world, what then? Just sit there and grow fat?
Title: Re: Gotta love it
Post by: dough560 on February 25, 2010, 06:07:50 am
Gillsing, Do the names; John Moses Browning, Carbine Williams, John C. Garand mean anything?  They should.  Most modern firearms are descended from their genius.

The M60 Machinegun was designed by committee and is one of the most dangerous to the user arms ever to make it into the American Arsenal.

Automobiles, Radio, Telephone, Television.....  All one man.

Big businesses tend to become stuck in their ways.  Look at GM.  Local inventors are working out workable designs for home power systems and electric vehicles... Many of which are not even on the government's radar
Title: Re: Gotta love it
Post by: Azure Priest on February 25, 2010, 07:23:54 am
There are 5000 pound (and larger) animals. Their main problem is finding enough food to support their mass.

Sperm (and other) whales of that size eat mountains of plankton and kelp every day.

Sharks and other oceanic carnivores have to hunt the ocean equivalent of 4000 pound gazelles.

There ARE advantages to being huge.  A very large business that decides it wants to "set up shop" somewhere, one that has a large reserve of capital or cash can (and many have) move in, set up a MEGASTORE and undersell the locals even at a loss. When the locals no longer have the resources to stay in business because all their customers flocked to the "cheap" meagastore, they close. Then once there IS no more competition, the MEGASTORE regains its "investment" by raising the prices through the roof. Since there is no longer anywhere else to go....  Eventually, the prices will stabilize. Low enough that no one can afford the investment of setting up a "mom and pop" store which can actually compete, but higher than the "high" prices people flocked away from in the first place.

There are also dis-advantages as mentioned. Resistance to change, reluctance to adapt being at the top of the list.
Title: Re: Gotta love it
Post by: Gillsing on February 25, 2010, 11:02:56 am
Automobiles, Radio, Telephone, Television.....  All one man.
Maybe I've become too bedazzled by the complexity of our modern technology to believe that the lone geniuses of yesterday could, alone, create something that sells better than what the large corporations offer. I suppose it's a matter of maturity. As a technology matures, it seems to require more and more people to work on it to improve it in order to compete with other variants.

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Big businesses tend to become stuck in their ways.  Look at GM.
While GM certainly seems to be a good example of a big business stuck in its ways, I'm not so sure that GM is a good example of a big business. It seems to me that quite a lot of big businesses are willing to do what it takes to stay in the game, and some even seem to be ahead in their field.
Title: Re: Gotta love it
Post by: Sean Roach on February 25, 2010, 11:32:31 am
Yeah.  They'll do whatever it takes to stay in the game.
Frequently by using government as a lever and a wall against smaller corporations.
They shop around their jobs to multiple municipalities, seeking someone who will let them dig in with a minimal tax load, allowing them, right there, to have lower operating costs than garage startups, that might directly employ only 20 people.
They seek restrictive laws, usually citing safety, that make the cost of getting into the trade very expensive.  Sometimes they are "grandfathered" in, so they don't even have to pay those costs.  Sometimes, they simply raise the costs of doing business.  Mandatory crash tests and, on a smaller, individual, level, licensing fees and requirements, are two examples.

Heck.  Bill Gates had something to say about oversized corporations.  Granted, he spoke saying he'd found the solution to the problem of an unwieldy corporation in email, but he, the then head of an outsized corporation, acknowledged large corporations as not as nimble as smaller mom-and-pops and garage startups.

A fun article to read would be the cover article in Wired, not too long ago, (a month to 3 months.)  It speaks of a new tendency towards garage-level manufacturing startups.
Title: Re: Gotta love it
Post by: Mabuse on February 25, 2010, 11:45:12 am
You guys do know that dis-economies of scale isn't some vague notion of various social or cultural attitudes that might work against large businesses; it's a well defined and and implemented economic theory, Ludwig Von Mises' arguments in the Socialist Calculation Debate about the difficulties central planning institutions would face in co-ordinating prices and resources were later applied - by Von Mises himself and later Murray Rothbard - to the structure and decision-making mechanisms of large corporations and found that they have the same basic flaws as the socialist calculators beyond a certain size and that most large corporations today are in fact over that limit; meaning that said businesses owe their long-term stability to state-granted protections and subsidy.
Title: Re: Gotta love it
Post by: SandySandfort on February 25, 2010, 05:41:07 pm
Sometimes, they simply raise the costs of doing business.  Mandatory crash tests and, on a smaller, individual, level, licensing fees and requirements, are two examples.

For years NASA and the "prime contractors" have worked to keep start-up private space ventures out of space. That what ITAR (International Trafficking in Arms Regulations) is all about. ITAR and other regulatory compliance makes it almost impossible for small rocket companies to get in the business. Whereas, compliance--as a percentage--isn't all that costly for the big companies.

I have been trying to get Panama interested in creating a minimal regulatory system for private space launches. (Basically, keep the hell out of the way and then take credit for creating something.) However, ITAR would make it almost impossible for small companies to take their technology out of the States.

So when I read about SeaLaunch, I was intrigued how a consortium that included a US company, a Russian company and two other foreign corporations could (a) share information among themseleves (generally not allowed under ITAR) and (b) remove the technology from Long Beach and sail it to the equator. (Also not generally allowed under ITAR). So I call to find out. When I asked how they complied with ITAR the women talking for SeaLaunch said, "Oh we have a whole department to handle compliance." Luckily, Wilber and Orville lived in a less regulated era...
Title: Re: Gotta love it
Post by: Rocketman on February 25, 2010, 09:14:56 pm
Gillsing, Do the names; John Moses Browning, Carbine Williams, John C. Garand mean anything?  They should.  Most modern firearms are descended from their genius.

The M60 Machinegun was designed by committee and is one of the most dangerous to the user arms ever to make it into the American Arsenal.
  "the pig" as the M60 was called in it's early days was indeed a poor light machine gun with a whole lot of serious design flaws.  But it didn't even come close to the absolute piece of junk machine gun that the french pawned off to the American troops in WW1 and that was the Chauchat (aka Show-show).  The American government payed for 25,000 with about 2,200 shipped to the U.S. for training.  Everyone and I mean everyone who saw the gun being fired had a deep personal dislike for the gun because it so frequently jammed in the most unusual ways.  And you have to remember that we're talking about training and not combat which is quite a bit dirtier.  As soon as the war was over just about all of them were junked and even today the Army doesn't like to talk about them.
Title: Re: Gotta love it
Post by: wdg3rd on February 25, 2010, 09:56:30 pm
Chauchat (aka Show-show)

That is actually close to the correct pronunciation.  (Show-Shaw is closer).  I took a couple years of frog-speak in high school, trading skiffy novels with the teacher who was the only other out-of-the-closet SF (but not Star Trek) fan in the school (he tracked me down and we exchanged a few emails about a decade back, but he in now in the ground).  I never did learn to speak frog worth a damn (most of what I can speak [the bits I learned from Grandma, who dealt with a lot of Kaybeckers, and nurses don't learn the good words] you'll only hear when I drop a brick on my foot), but that also applies to Spanish, German, Lithuanian, Polish, Russian, Korean, Japanese and several other languages that I've learned just the Bad Words from, but I can read Dumas without more than cursory use of a LaRousse dictionary (that won't have a bunch of regional terms anyway, so it's almost useless for Dumas or for that matter Rostand).

I still want to learn to cuss (rather than curse) in Welsh and both Irish and Scots-gaelic).  That's most of my ancestry, but I've had little to no _informal_ exposure to those languages.
Title: Re: Gotta love it
Post by: dough560 on February 26, 2010, 01:06:15 am
Walmart is a prime example of the drive out the little guy market controls.  In-fact, I have to drive about thirty miles to be serviced by a shoe store that sells something other than Walmart's "quality" footwear.  If I want high end running shoes, its fifteen miles in the opposite  direction.

Rocketman, I don't know if that French piece of junk was designed by a committee or an individual.  With the French, does it make a difference?

Sean, The plant I currently work at, is a case in point.  They moved into a depressed area and the local governments gave them a ten year tax break.  The workers, on the other hand, pay income taxes to the town.  A town where we do not have the right to vote.

Sandy, what information do you have about Sealaunch?  Sounds interesting.
Title: Re: Gotta love it
Post by: SandySandfort on February 26, 2010, 07:30:00 am
Sandy, what information do you have about Sealaunch?  Sounds interesting.

Sea Launch is a consortium of corporate welfare mothers masquerading as a private, entrepreneurial space company.  The four companies are from the US, Russia, Ukraine and Norway. Boeing seems to be the point company. They have launched all of the DirecTV satellites and have blown up one of them. The seagoing launch facility is interesting.

   http://www.boeing.com/special/sea-launch/ (http://www.boeing.com/special/sea-launch/)
Title: Re: Gotta love it
Post by: ttogreh on February 26, 2010, 07:41:33 am
Good topic, but your assumptions are wrong. This is partially because they have not come in the strip yet. In other cases. Beyond that, your erroneous economic assumptions are all your own..

...

There are other settlements, including built up areas at the poles. Of course there are residents who live in the settlements and not on seasteads. Reggie and the Guzmán family, for example. Your first questionable assumption is that the settlements on Ceres are expanding. What leads you to this conclusion?

You have stated that more people are escaping from Terra. So many, in fact, that the elder Babette has had to formalize her lending as a going concern. More people means that either the population density is increasing, or the settlements are expanding, or both. In any event, if the settlements are static now, they more than likely will not be in the future, what with emigration.

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The settlements sit on rocky islands in the Cererean (ice) Sea. The islands are not getting any bigger. Of course, there could be (and are) seasteads that run mom and pop stores, but the land is not expanding. Eventually, an airskin system will cover Ceres and the seas will be melted. Then, there will be something of a commons question, though, plans are being made for that eventuality. If the strip goes on long enough, we will discuss it. However for the present, there are only about 5000 full-time Ceres residents spread over 360,000 square kilometers of ice ocean.

Yes, there are (X + n) residents spread over a finite area. That area will eventually be developed "enough" to foster a renter's economy.

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Again, SEAsteads are just floating ocean habitats. There are no deeds to be bought out. On the islands, there exists an informal "deed" recognition of ownership and transfer.

This is a distinction without difference. The seasteaders own their habitats, and if we call it a "title" or a "deed", that piece of paper (or more likely, a collection of 1s and 0s) has a fungible value dependent on market conditions. Granted, if we can assume that the seas will be common for the foreseeable future, that just leaves the islands and the land that Ceres City rests on, which merely accelerates the timeline for my scenario.

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Nice Marxist rhetoric, but Marxism has been shown to be wrong so many times in so many places, one wonders why people keep trotting out this tired, broken old whore as a superior worldview. Plus, I don't think anyone could seriously promote a system that killed 100,000,000 innocent people in the 29th Century.

Marxism is about trying to destroy the renter's economy, which is about as practical as trying to destroy or create matter. No, I am just stating that the concept of "rent" does not disappear in an anarcho-capitalist society, and private roadways treated as common roadways... need to be maintained by someone.

Who owns the roads? How do they pay for them? How can a finite metropolitan area avoid a monopoly on a vital utility such as roads, when indeed a monopoly is the most natural development for a utility like roads?

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You can only have an elite class (not based on merit) in a statist system. You can have rich people, but without a government to be bought off to use force to maintain power over the plebes, that power is very ephemeral. "Money can't buy you love," as the song goes.   ;D

Somebody has to pay for the maintenance of the roads, and the roads are privately owned. If that is not the perfect environment for an hydraulic despotism, I don't know what is. Look, this is your vision. Explain to me how there can be competition in the road market. Use future tech, if you need to.

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...

Again, in a stateless, society, there are dis-economies of scale. The nimble economic "mammals" will run circles around the ponderous bureaucratic "dinosaurs." Think of it as a Laffer Curve. Every type of enterprise has a natural optimal size. Below that size, there are economies of scale. Above that size, there are dis-economies of scale.

Here's another "natural" analogy. If bigger is better, why are there no 5000 pound lions?

Get it now?


I honestly believe that in a finite metropolitan area, a natural monopoly will develop in the roads market, which will allow for rent seeking. Explain to me how I am wrong.
Title: Re: Gotta love it
Post by: Sean Roach on February 26, 2010, 10:35:58 am
I tend to agree with you.
One thing might make it less likely, and that is if property IS fungible.
If one lot is treated as like another, than a person might move away if they don't like the terms.

You might notice this thread is over 15 months old, and that is, or was, a point of discussion on it, as recently as the top post on the last page.

One way to control a finite resource, such as access, is to make the business responsible for its own connections with neighboring businesses.  If the lot is clear, but the lot holder beside it won't talk to you, and won't allow you to connect with him, you're going to have to find someone else to tie in through.  The problem with this is it puts the burden of maintenance on those who will pay.
Everyone needs the place to stay aired up, so a business that refuses to maintain the airskin over their place is a liability to its neighbors.  A business that avoids paying for air recycling, or security, remains habitable, at the expense of its neighbors.  Once the cost of supporting this freeloader exceeds the benefit of being able to walk across in front of this freeloaders property, or being able to target the customers of this freeloader with add-on goods and services, the other holders would probably do things like throwing up curtains to keep their air for them, and possibly just sealing the freeloader off until he provided for his load on the mixed resources.

Another thing.  Ceres is an iced over rock.  The escape velocity is 1430.78 mph, less than a third that of the moon, (source http://www.qrg.northwestern.edu/projects/vss/docs/space-environment/2-whats-escape-velocity.html (http://www.qrg.northwestern.edu/projects/vss/docs/space-environment/2-whats-escape-velocity.html)).  The term "belters" is used frequently.   I think you might be oversimplifying things to assume the elder Guzman's debtors are all on Ceres.
Title: Re: Gotta love it
Post by: Scott on February 26, 2010, 11:57:42 pm
There are various ways of dealing with the "renters economy" phenomenon.  I think the one most likely in the context of Ceres' stateless culture, and the fact that no place there is habitable without a considerable amount of improvements, is a more usufruct notion of land rights.  You own a plot of land on Ceres so long as you have and are maintaining a home or business there. If an owner abandons some section for several years, and squatters move in and start making a home or a going concern of the place, chances are the other Cerereans not only won't object, but may side with the squatters against any absentee landlords. (Laws in most United States have some form of this, called "adverse possession," although it isn't used much and of course the government courts apply it inconsistently.)

Roads within the settlements can and would likely be owned and maintained by a associations of merchants who rely on those roads for their businesses.

And ultimately, if Ceres gets to be too "overgrown," there are other planetoids, asteroids, the Jovian moons, the Saturnine moons, the Kuiper Belt, etc. Space, even the space just within the Sol System, is Big. Really, mind-bogglingly big. You may think it's a long way down the road to the chemist's but that's just peanuts to Space. And eventually, someone will invent a workable FTL drive and we'll have whole new planetary systems to colonize.
Title: Re: Gotta love it
Post by: ttogreh on February 28, 2010, 09:08:02 am
There are various ways of dealing with the "renters economy" phenomenon.  I think the one most likely in the context of Ceres' stateless culture, and the fact that no place there is habitable without a considerable amount of improvements, is a more usufruct notion of land rights.  You own a plot of land on Ceres so long as you have and are maintaining a home or business there. If an owner abandons some section for several years, and squatters move in and start making a home or a going concern of the place, chances are the other Cerereans not only won't object, but may side with the squatters against any absentee landlords. (Laws in most United States have some form of this, called "adverse possession," although it isn't used much and of course the government courts apply it inconsistently.)

Obviously an absent land lord is easy enough to resolve in a stateless society. A present, rent-seeking land lord is much more sticky of a problem.

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Roads within the settlements can and would likely be owned and maintained by a associations of merchants who rely on those roads for their businesses.

Sure, but I still have not seen any evidence to convince me that such an association could not become its own going concern and turning into a natural monopoly. First, a few streets, then a few blocks, and then "enough" of Ceres to make the collection of road rent a commodity.

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And ultimately, if Ceres gets to be too "overgrown," there are other planetoids, asteroids, the Jovian moons, the Saturnine moons, the Kuiper Belt, etc. Space, even the space just within the Sol System, is Big. Really, mind-bogglingly big. You may think it's a long way down the road to the chemist's but that's just peanuts to Space. And eventually, someone will invent a workable FTL drive and we'll have whole new planetary systems to colonize.

People live together in cities because it is more efficient than spread-out settlements. That efficiency is self-evident. I don't care if a Cererean can go to alpha centauri for a vacation. Ceres will still have a finite metropolitan area, and it will still have roads.
Title: Re: Gotta love it
Post by: quadibloc on February 28, 2010, 11:57:23 am
Roads, in an anarcho-capitalist society, would be just like the mall air conditioning in your example. Merchants with stores would be useless without access, so they would join together to provide roads, so that their customers could visit their stores.
Malls have air-conditioning, and office buildings have elevators. Is it just fear of the unknown that makes us imagine that without Big Government to hold our hands, highways and bridges would be impossible?

Although city governments do set standards, if a real estate developer is going to turn several acres of farmland into a suburb, the developer pays for contractors to put in the sewers and the electricity and to pave the roads. So even now the government isn't actually doing it all. City bylaws just help to avoid the situation where people have to drive around neighborhoods where the developer skimped on the roads... or plagues from neighborhoods where the developer skimped on the sewer capacity.

It wouldn't necessarily be an improvement if, for the sake of livability, in the absence of city governments, nearly everyone felt it necessary to live in a gated community. Government, by being able to make everyone do his share, just lets larger people organize together more quickly than they can by private cooperation. In a world plagued by war, the advantage this provided more than made up for the disadvantages that even oppressive governments had, never mind democratic governments - because the real choice people had was either have an oppressive government, or be killed or enslaved by the next tribe over.
Title: Re: Gotta love it
Post by: Scott on March 02, 2010, 01:00:55 am
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Sure, but I still have not seen any evidence to convince me that such an association could not become its own going concern and turning into a natural monopoly. First, a few streets, then a few blocks, and then "enough" of Ceres to make the collection of road rent a commodity.

I'm not sure why a business owner who depends on roads to bring customers would want to give up his share of a road association. The bigger the road network, the more association members, all of them with a self-interest in supporting their businesses by providing safe and convenient access.

I'm not sure what sort of evidence might convince you about this. You can't really prove anything with storytelling, you can only illustrate, offering a vision of what might be.

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People live together in cities because it is more efficient than spread-out settlements. That efficiency is self-evident. I don't care if a Cererean can go to alpha centauri for a vacation. Ceres will still have a finite metropolitan area, and it will still have roads.

So long as living in on Ceres offers more benefits than striking out on one's own or with a group of like-minded people and establishing new colonies elsewhere (which gets easier over time with improving technology), or going to newly-established places that have unclaimed space available, I don't see how this is a problem.
Title: Re: Gotta love it
Post by: quadibloc on March 02, 2010, 03:31:10 am
So long as living in on Ceres offers more benefits than striking out on one's own or with a group of like-minded people and establishing new colonies elsewhere (which gets easier over time with improving technology), or going to newly-established places that have unclaimed space available, I don't see how this is a problem.
You've just stated the single biggest problem with this comic as an argument for Libertarianism or anarcho-capitalism, or whatever (as opposed to entertainment, which purpose it fulfills quite well).

The earlier history of America shows that democracy with strong limits on what the government can tax people for, if not full-blown Libertarianism, is not only workable when there's an open frontier next door, but that it would be very difficult to get people to sit still for big government with piles of regulations like we seem to have today under such a circumstance.

Now, take a crowded world, where there is no "elsewhere" to go to, just every scrap of land being controlled by one or another government, and all of them very crowded, with few people having any choice but to work for wages for someone else as a living... and having government defend renters against landlords, and wage-earners against their employers, with regulations at least sounds very attractive. Zoning laws, laws restricting pollution, and even gun control, at least sound like they make sense if your place of residence has the density of Manhattan Island.

So if you leave out the gratuitous cruelty of today's dictatorships - and on a smaller level, the Terra in this story -  it isn't as clear cut. One is still dealing with a world where everything you own depends on the restraint of the majority in not voting itself largesse from the public treasury, so it's not a good alternative, but if circumstances confine people to a crowded area, making that work without a lot of government seems to be the more difficult case.
Title: Re: Gotta love it
Post by: ttogreh on March 02, 2010, 06:04:16 am

...

I'm not sure why a business owner who depends on roads to bring customers would want to give up his share of a road association. The bigger the road network, the more association members, all of them with a self-interest in supporting their businesses by providing safe and convenient access.

I'm not sure what sort of evidence might convince you about this. You can't really prove anything with storytelling, you can only illustrate, offering a vision of what might be.

Let me try to illustrate what I am trying to say. Pops ran his doll store well, but Junior was more interested in thermonuclear demolition. When Pops died, he sold the store to a nearby merchant that he and Pops knew for a song. He actually made more money selling his road association membership to "Ceres Road Holdings, LLC". Repeat my story "enough" times. The roads are well run, the rent on them is reasonable, but for the love of god, don't forget to pay it.


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So long as living in on Ceres offers more benefits than striking out on one's own or with a group of like-minded people and establishing new colonies elsewhere (which gets easier over time with improving technology), or going to newly-established places that have unclaimed space available, I don't see how this is a problem.

Oh, it certainly is not a problem. Indeed, it is quite a lucrative opportunity to people that might not be as like-minded as you would like them to be.