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Comment Re:Bull (Score 1) 644

>> And in your story.... teh evil rich somehow keep kidden the secret sauce of robots from the unsuspecting populace who still believes in magic ? Or... ?

You might know exactly how a microprocessor is built, but there's no way you and a bunch of people living hand-to-mouth are going to gather the engineering chops to build one. Now add to that materials and software, and your hopes of building an automated servant are pretty much nil. And no one is going to sell you one because automation will be worth more than anything a human could provide.

There's a crucial element I left out: raw resources. They're what automation converts to more valuable forms of wealth, and it can't be conjured out of nothing. The most powerful will wrest as much of it as possible, including the means to claim more. That isn't evil, it's just heartless. And when you don't need the poor to create wealth anymore, maximizing your wealth involves neutralizing the threat they represent. Whichever way is cheapest, that's what you do.

So common decency will be the only thing protecting the poor. Laws? When the poor are impotent, only altruism will support such laws. Equal opportunity will require decency, but the free market will not. Sure, it's reasonable to rely somewhat on common decency, but it's a case of hoping for the best and preparing for the worst. We will need to institutionalize some degree of equal opportunity or risk losing it.

So what will equal opportunity comprise? Making sure no one is economically irrelevant. And that means providing automation and access to resources to those who couldn't reasonably hope to acquire it themselves.

>> >> What is the point of personal economic liberty if most people have no wealth to make decisions about?
>> To .... earn that wealth ??? .....

Tell that to people who were born into poverty and never had the chance to go to school because they had to support the family. You underestimate the prodigious ingenuity and emotional strength necessary to pull yourself out of that when everyone around you is also poor.

Comment Re:So what? (Score 1) 215

Fresh urine contains more urea than anything else. It's C=O with a couple of NH2 groups coming off the C. There are also some cations in there.

Bleach is NaOCl.

I'm not a chemist, I'm just guessing for the fun of it. I think the nitrogens end up getting oxidized you end up with some N2 and CO2.

Someone who knows more than I do should chime in.

Comment Re:Bull (Score 3, Insightful) 644

Do correct me if I have a glaring misconception, but it seems to me that if robots are doing enough of the work, the rich can use their power to obviate the poor. Of what use are the poor if there's no demand for their work, and you have nothing to gain by trading with them because automation can create whatever is most valuable to you? What is the point of personal economic liberty if most people have no wealth to make decisions about?

Comment Come on (Score 1) 386

How is this considered the slightest bit complicated?

Cryo's already paid for. Mom doesn't share any expenses with Dad. If she's frozen, there's a tiny chance she'll wake up. If she's buried, there's no chance she'll wake up.

If she wakes up and life is too hard, she can still off herself. But no, let's not even give her the option?

It's a fucking no-brainer and the father should be shot. Well OK not shot, but sternly admonished for sure.

Comment Re: if by "plant" (Score 1) 215

I think you're confusing m/s and m/s^2. You use multiple stages to reach a given speed, and the units of speed are m/s. Acceleration increases your speed over time, and the units of acceleration are m/s^2. You can accelerate by 7400 m/s, which means you'll end up going 7400 m/s faster than before. If you accelerate at 7400 m/s^2, it means your speed is increasing by 7400 m/s every second, which after a minute would have you going 60*7400 m/s = 444000 m/s.

Comment Accountability Economy (Score 1) 213

OK this is how to save the world.

Punishment is just an expression of anger. It doesn't make the world better unless it fixes the underlying problem. We have "correctional institutions" but we don't correct. Prison is still just a place to dump someone as a form of punishment.

Autonomy and accountability go hand in hand. So when citizens in good standing reach legal age, start them out with the Basic Autonomy (TM) package. It gives you all the freedoms and powers you expect. You get it because society trusts you to keep your shit together, more or less.

We spend so much per prisoner that we certainly can afford to offer actual correctional support to those who can't manage this autonomy.

If you screw up in some way, you don't necessarily go to jail. You temporarily forfeit some measure of both autonomy *and* accountability. You lose a freedom but you also aren't expected to handle certain responsibilities. Like let's say you're caught DUI. You lose the freedom to drive, but you're provided whatever transportation you need to be productive. It's like what you'd do with your kid. Make sure the kid can get to school/work, but otherwise ground them.

If you're caught laundering money, you lose your business and license. Maybe there's some weird way to make this temporary, like if the government runs your business while your rights are suspended. The government also prohibits you from associating with certain people. But anyway, there's no need for jail time.

If you can't hold a job, or don't want to, you're basically treated the way we treat adolescents. It isn't a bad thing. It is what it is. You're fed, clothed, sheltered, free to work part time if you want, etc, but the state keeps a close eye on how you spend your time, just like parents would. It isn't fun but it isn't terrible either. You can get help to improve your ability or increase your drive to regain autonomy. Of course if circumstances beyond your control have stripped you of the ability to work, things go a bit differently.

If you kill someone deliberately, your access to people is heavily restricted. I guess this is a case where imprisonment is the only option. It's tough because when you imprison someone, they necessarily lose some powers they might have been able to handle just fine.

If you have power over other citizens, you have concomitant responsibility. For-profit prisons are de facto impossible because the whole point of the system is to balance power and accountability. As a result of that balance there is no profit to be made.

If you commit fraud, you owe the people you cheated. You lose most freedoms until you earn the money back because all of your wages are garnished. You lose the power to gain new property so the state assumes the responsibility.

Giant financial institutions are limited in their ability to grow by their ability to account for their power. "Too big to fail" doesn't happen because a bank is required to hold an untouchable cash reserve that's released if it ever fails, and this amount depends on how much damage the economy would suffer. We already require banks to keep a fractional reserve, but that fraction increases along with your impact on the market. There are other factors, such as how competent top executives are deemed to be. Can't find someone good to replace your top person? Then you need to release reserve into the market. Somehow. Not sure how.

If you take a risk so great that in failure you'd never be able to account for the loss, a portion of your gains are garnished such that in retrospect, the risk was manageable. You also temporarily lose the power to take certain risks.

I don't know what to do when economic growth in general is limited by a scarcity of accountability. Maybe nothing.

National security will upset the balance. Not sure how to manage that either.

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