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  • Results 1 to 14 of 14

    1. #1
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      Philosophical Topics in Light Novels/Manga/Anime (off-topic thread)

      sortition seems like a good idea until I have to go in for jury duty. Having to temporarily uproot your life to fill a political post doesn't seem like something that would fit in with contemporary western culture. Or at least not US culture.
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      Oh my, that comment recalled me a dream I had a few years ago <.<

    2. #2
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      Re: Philosophical Topics in Light Novels/Manga/Anime (details in the first post)

      Quote Originally Posted by Momogari View Post
      sortition seems like a good idea until I have to go in for jury duty. Having to temporarily uproot your life to fill a political post doesn't seem like something that would fit in with contemporary western culture. Or at least not US culture.
      Lol. Truth. Though there is a philosopher at Rutgers who argues that this problem could be resolved by paying people well to do their civic duty. He argues that if you stand to make $200,000 for a year's work, you'll feel much better about uprooting your life. He also argues that this would help reduce corruption.
      “There is no such thing as a coincidence in this world. There is only the inevitable.” – Yuuko Ichihara, xxxHolic

    3. #3

      Philosophical Topics in Light Novels/Manga/Anime (off-topic thread)

      The original thread: https://www.animeleague.net/forum/sh...he-first-post)

      This thread is for moving things from the original thread which are not directly LN/manga/anime related.



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    4. #4

      Re: Philosophical Topics in Light Novels/Manga/Anime (details in the first post)

      Quote Originally Posted by lambda-sky View Post
      Immigration is a similar problem. You can increase the standard of living for a 3rd world migrant through the roof by simply letting them into the country. Improving the standard of living for your citizens the same way is much harder. And if 1 person = 1 vote then guess there all the effort goes. But if it turns out that those migrants are not doctors and engineers but illiterate thugs with medieval moral values then that's not a good long term game plan for your country or the effectively marginalised native citizens.
      I think it depends on individual matters of each immigrant (which might be influenced by their country of origin and their social class).

      As far as I can tell, there are two separate things in the comment above:
      1. Who should be allowed to enter the country?
      2. Should people in richer countries help people in poorer countries?

      I think these two matters are independent to a certain degree.

      For example if one creates a sort of a test or an exam let anyone who passes it to enter the country, then it's a different situation from allowing anyone to enter or allowing no one to enter or allowing only people from countries with the same level of wealth to enter. These are 4 very different situations in my understanding. Which one is your favourite?

      I think the idea of a country introduces too many complications. Let's talk about clubs instead.

      Let's say a certain group of people which share some common values decided to create a club. They set up certain rules and they highlighted certain values in the beginning and then the rules and the values evolved, but they stayed similar in many ways to the original ones. After some time, the club lost its personal character, because children of the original founders also became members automatically. Many of those children didn't share similar values to the founders but they were forced to join and the rules were enforced on them and they were punished if they didn't obey them. Some of the children (who are now adults) dislike the current rules and values and they want them to be changed or to get out of the club.

      After some time the club became rich. There might be different reasons why it happened, e.g.:
      - the club was far from other clubs so the other clubs couldn't easily steal or destroy its resources,
      - the club had plenty of resources in the beginning when it was formed,
      - the club has stolen resources from other clubs or destroyed them or forced other clubs to pay a tribute to it,
      - the values and the rules and values of the club supported getting rich,
      - lucky!
      etc.

      There were more clubs like that. Each of them had a different set of rules and values, but a similar situation with the children happened in each of them.

      Some of the other clubs were poor. It might have been caused by different factors. Some possible reasons (for different clubs) were:
      - the club was forced to pay a tribute to another, more powerful club,
      - the resources of the club were stolen or destroyed by other clubs,
      - the club didn't have too many resources in the first place, so the starting point was different,
      - the values and the rules and values of the club didn't support getting rich,
      - unlucky!
      etc.

      So some non-founders from the other clubs want to get out of them and want to enter the rich club. It might be because it's rich and they want to be rich as well. It might also be because they do not agree with the rules of their original club.

      Some members of the rich club want to help the members of other, poorer clubs, so they want to invite them to the richer club. Some members of the rich club hate everyone outside the club, so they don't want to allow anyone outside the club to get in. Some members of the rich club just don't want to help poor people at all and they do not care. Some members of the rich club fear that allowing members of the poorer clubs to enter and allowing them to vote will have a huge impact on the rules and the values of the club. Some members of the rich club do not agree with the rules and the values of the club, so they want people with values more similar to theirs to enter the rich club, so they can form a majority with them and they will be able to change the rich club's rules and values. Some people in the rich club fear that if they do not allow at least some of the poor people to enter, the poor people will form a huge coalition in order to destroy the rich club and to steal its resources.

      So who should be allowed to enter the rich club?

      If no one is allowed or only members of other rich clubs are allowed, some of the members of the rich club won't be happy, because some of them wanted to help the poor and some of them fear that the poor will form a coalition to destroy the rich club. Also the members who do not agree with the current rules and regulations will not be happy. Also, if members of other rich clubs are allowed to enter, the haters in the club will not be happy, because they hate anyone outside the club, including members of other rich clubs.

      If everyone is allowed, then some members will see it as a threat to the rules and the values of the club and these might get changed. If the club got rich because of its rules and values (the members don't know this, they could have been different reasons), then after changing them the club will get poorer, and they will get poorer as its members. Some current members simply are happy and agree with the current rules (or at least some of them) and they don't want them to be changed. Their argument is that this club was formed for people who wanted to stick to these rules, so if someone doesn't like them, they should go elsewhere.

      If only people who pass an exam are allowed, the question is what the exam is about. If it's about checking if people entering the club are compatible with the current rules and values, then the members who do not agree with the rules will not be happy. Also the haters won't be happy. A subgroup of people who want to help the poor will not be happy as well, because this subgroup wants to help all people, regardless of whether or not they share the same values and they want to follow the same rules as the members.


      An ideal situation from my perspective would be:
      - there are many different clubs which cover all combinations of rules and values,
      - all clubs are provided with the same amount of resources in the beginning, they have the same amount of members and only the rules and values are different,
      - each club should allow: 1) all people who are not happy with the rules and values to leave 2) all people who are happy with the rules and values to join (a test might be necessary to check that, because of entrism)
      so in the end, if all goes well, a club with the best set of rules and values would win.

      Unfortunately the situation is far from the ideal one.
      Last edited by unoduetre; 06-20-2019 at 07:10 AM.



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    5. #5
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      Re: Philosophical Topics in Light Novels/Manga/Anime (details in the first post)

      Quote Originally Posted by unoduetre View Post

      As far as I can tell, there are two separate things in the comment above:
      1. Who should be allowed to enter the country?
      2. Should people in richer countries help people in poorer countries?
      (
      I can answer these quite easily.

      1) Nobody. Fuck off we're full.
      2) No, fuck 'em.
      "Every position must be held to the last man: there must be no retirement. With our backs to the wall and believing in the justice of our cause, each one of us must fight on to the end."

      Earl Douglas Haig, Order to the British Army, 12 April 1918

      So death, the most terrifying of ills, is nothing to us, since so long as we exist, death is not with us; but when death comes, then we do not exist. It does not then concern either the living or the dead, since the former it is not, and the latter are no more.

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    6. #6

      Re: Philosophical Topics in Light Novels/Manga/Anime (off-topic thread)

      @Moulders

      That was an easy answer for you indeed.



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    7. #7

      Re: Philosophical Topics in Light Novels/Manga/Anime (off-topic thread)

      Quote Originally Posted by unoduetre View Post
      This thread is for moving things from the original thread which are not directly LN/manga/anime related.
      The problem I was trying to illustrate is that immigrants get a better quality of life, politicians get their votes but the country itself is left worse off and the problem compounds itself when those immigrants each have 20 kids who all vote to continue down this path. Tyranny by Majority. I don't think it was that far removed from the original topic.

      Quote Originally Posted by unoduetre View Post
      For example if one creates a sort of a test or an exam let anyone who passes it to enter the country, then it's a different situation from allowing anyone to enter or allowing no one to enter or allowing only people from countries with the same level of wealth to enter. These are 4 very different situations in my understanding. Which one is your favourite?
      The problem you're trying to solve is a democracy being flooded with a new Majority who are unable to maintain the country's economy and therefor oppressing the new Minority.
      So wealth is a good heuristic because if you make the same money either way then you restrict immigration to people who actually want to come for some other reason.
      But it would be dumb to reject a doctor just because he gets paid less in his native country so maybe base it on potential wealth and relative to your average rather than absolute wealth.

      I think we're going down a bit of a rabbit hole by talking only about wealth though. If you're opening the topic out then another major factor to consider is stake.
      If you are born in X and your parents are X then you are X because X is all you have.
      But if you are Y and you go to work in X then how much do you really care about X?
      If X collapses you just pack your bags and move to Z.
      If everything collapses then you move back to Y.
      If you are X and X collapses then you have nothing.
      Is it fair to give those 2 people an equal vote on X?

      Quote Originally Posted by unoduetre View Post
      After some time the club became rich. There might be different reasons why it happened, e.g.:
      - the club was far from other clubs so the other clubs couldn't easily steal or destroy its resources,
      - the club had plenty of resources in the beginning when it was formed,
      - the club has stolen resources from other clubs or destroyed them or forced other clubs to pay a tribute to it,
      - the values and the rules and values of the club supported getting rich,
      - lucky!
      etc.
      Or they established a legal and social structure that protects investment and promotes innovation. Technology => Power => Wealth.

      Quote Originally Posted by unoduetre View Post
      2. Should people in richer countries help people in poorer countries?
      Yes but you help a hungry man by teaching him how to fish, not giving him free fish at someone else's expense. That's a point Lefty globalists tend to miss.
       

    8. #8

      Re: Philosophical Topics in Light Novels/Manga/Anime (off-topic thread)

      OK, let me try to answer the points you mentioned.

      Quote Originally Posted by lambda-sky View Post
      The problem I was trying to illustrate is that immigrants get a better quality of life, politicians get their votes but the country itself is left worse off and the problem compounds itself when those immigrants each have 20 kids who all vote to continue down this path. Tyranny by Majority. I don't think it was that far removed from the original topic.
      I think it's far enough from the original problem, but nothing stops us from discussing it here.

      Quote Originally Posted by lambda-sky View Post
      The problem you're trying to solve is a democracy being flooded with a new Majority who are unable to maintain the country's economy and therefor oppressing the new Minority.
      I think it is an interesting problem, but it's not the whole original problem of the Tyranny of the Majority. It's a particular version of it. It's possible to have Tyrrany of the Majority without any immigration.

      Quote Originally Posted by lambda-sky View Post
      So wealth is a good heuristic because if you make the same money either way then you restrict immigration to people who actually want to come for some other reason.
      That's right. But if e.g. scientists or doctors have the same opportunities in their home countries, why would they want to emigrate? There might be e.g. some family connections (e.g. some family is from a particular country etc.). Or the person is a native speaker of the language used in a different country (e.g. a child of immigrants). Or the person really likes the culture (e.g. weebs). Or there are non-financial, but still economical reasons, e.g. safety, access to social services etc. But besides these relatively rare reasons, there are probably not so many others to move to another country at the same level of wealth for most people. So only a small number of people would move, also among doctors and scientists.

      Of course this counterargument only works for countries which have scientists and doctors (or at least people coming from these countries would like to learn to become ones). E.g. if the culture of a country is anti-scientific in general, this counterargument will only work for a very small amount of people. But it's a different thing to be anti-scientific and to not have well developed science. There are many examples of people who came from countries where science is not well developed, and they became great scientists, because they were given opportunities. But one cannot be a great scientist if one's deepest beliefs are anti-scientific. I think it is an important distinction.

      So if a country wants to be attractive for (potential or actual) doctors and scientists, isn't it better to create a filter which filters people based on some criteria related to that instead of their wealth?

      It's a different situation if a country doesn't want to be attractive to them. In this case the wealth criterium fullfils its role of limiting immigration.

      Quote Originally Posted by lambda-sky View Post
      But it would be dumb to reject a doctor just because he gets paid less in his native country so maybe base it on potential wealth and relative to your average rather than absolute wealth.
      Yeah. I agree it would be dumb. Especially if another country paid for their education.

      Quote Originally Posted by lambda-sky View Post
      I think we're going down a bit of a rabbit hole by talking only about wealth though.
      Yes. I have provided a list of potential reasons why some countries might be poor. The arguments we discussed focused on one of them only (rules and values which I think also includes legal and social structures you mentioned). There are other reasons why countries are poor. I think it is important to address the other reasons as well. I agree ONE of the possible reasons is the "rules and values" reason, and some countries are poor because of that. But I do not think it's the only one. Can we address the other reasons I mentioned as well? I agree with you that IF this is the reason, then wealth might say something relevant, but what if it's not the reason why a country is poor?

      Quote Originally Posted by lambda-sky View Post
      If you're opening the topic out then another major factor to consider is stake.
      If you are born in X and your parents are X then you are X because X is all you have.
      But if you are Y and you go to work in X then how much do you really care about X?
      If X collapses you just pack your bags and move to Z.
      If everything collapses then you move back to Y.
      If you are X and X collapses then you have nothing.
      Is it fair to give those 2 people an equal vote on X?
      I agree with this reasoning in general. But there are two things missing here. The way to incentivize people to care about things is to MAKE them stakeholders. E.g. if people are just employees, they don't really care. If you make them owners they care much more. It's a proven strategy e.g. in business. If you don't give people vote, they'll never care. But I agree it won't work for all of them, and some people will never care even if given vote. Another question to you: are you sure people who have vote really care? I think there are many people who have vote and don't care at all. So maybe they should lose their votes, right? Maybe give votes to people who care (or would care if given a vote), and take it from people who don't care, regardless of the country they originally come from? It might be difficult in practice though.

      Also it might be the case that the stakes are high for immigrants. E.g. if someone sold everything in their home country to be able to move to a richer one. The stakes are very high for this kind of immigrant. Shouldn't this kind of immigrant get the vote then?

      What about immigrants who emigrated from a country because they didn't agree with the rules of the country or they were persecuted? Their stakes are very high as well. Shouldn't they be allowed to vote?

      This argument doesn't work for these kinds of immigrants. It only works for people who have something to come back to in their home country.

      The stakes can be very low for people who e.g. have 10 houses each in a different country. If their home country collapses, they'll just move. I don't think their stakes are very high. Should they lose their votes?

      Quote Originally Posted by lambda-sky View Post
      Or they established a legal and social structure that protects investment and promotes innovation. Technology => Power => Wealth.
      As mentioned above, I think the "rules and values" part covers it.

      Quote Originally Posted by lambda-sky View Post
      Yes but you help a hungry man by teaching him how to fish, not giving him free fish at someone else's expense. That's a point Lefty globalists tend to miss.
      Yes, but even if you teach people how to fish, they won't be able to do it, even if they're brilliant fishermen, if they cannot afford to buy fishing nets and there is no fishing net shop nearby. I think this argument is correct in general, but it totally misses the problem of the initial capital which is crucial for this argument to work.




      I think many of the arguments are valid, but there are some missing points which need to be addressed.
      Last edited by unoduetre; 06-29-2019 at 04:49 AM.



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    9. #9

      Re: Philosophical Topics in Light Novels/Manga/Anime (off-topic thread)

      Quote Originally Posted by unoduetre View Post
      So if a country wants to be attractive for (potential or actual) doctors and scientists, isn't it better to create a filter which filters people based on some criteria related to that instead of their wealth?
      Wealth is a heuristic which applies to all sectors though. You don't have to list all the possible jobs and assign values to them. Just let the free market sort it out.

      Quote Originally Posted by unoduetre View Post
      Especially if another country paid for their education.
      Ouch I wasn't thinking of that but it's an important point.

      Quote Originally Posted by unoduetre View Post
      I agree ONE of the possible reasons is the "rules and values" reason, and some countries are poor because of that.
      Historically that *is* the reason though. Europe doesn't have natural resources or isolation from enemies or luck or whatever. They had rules and values. And innovation. One thing severally holding back innovation in the 18th century governments was lack of accountability. You lend money to the crown and the king decides actually he's not going to pay you back. What are you going to do about it? He's the fscking king.

      Then the Dutch established Rule of Law, this concept that the law applies to everyone equally so you can always get your money back against anyone. When there is a correct balance between risk and reward then investment is what drives innovation and technology. The French had a revolution instead but the outcome was the same. Equality before the law is the great driving force behind European dominance. And obviously America inherited that.

      Quote Originally Posted by unoduetre View Post
      The way to incentivize people to care about things is to MAKE them stakeholders.
      I would argue they need to make THEMSELVES stakeholders, you can't just give it to them. The way you incentivise is to make the road clear.

      Quote Originally Posted by unoduetre View Post
      Also it might be the case that the stakes are high for immigrants. E.g. if someone sold everything in their home country to be able to move to a richer one. The stakes are very high for this kind of immigrant. Shouldn't this kind of immigrant get the vote then?
      Such a person still wouldn't have a stake. We're talking about people who travel thousands of miles to get to Europe. It makes no difference at all which specific country they land in. My point was that if Germany collapse or enters a war, the native Germans will stay and rebuild or fight because it's their homeland and they have no where else to go. The "refugees" won't. Even if they can't go home they will move to the next richest European country. I mean think about it, the whole reason they are here is exactly because they are unable or unwilling to rebuild/defend their actual home. So you need to be really careful about treating them like equals.

      Quote Originally Posted by unoduetre View Post
      are you sure people who have vote really care? I think there are many people who have vote and don't care at all.
      I think what's important is that they're affected by the outcome, not their personal nihilism or lack of self awareness. It's interesting to note that we've come a long way. The original basis of citizen voting was that you are a man so you can be drafted into the military to fight as a result of policy decisions therefor you have a right to vote on them. Heinlein argues further in that direction, you should actually serve in the army to "earn" your vote. I guess what I'm saying is the rules for voting now are far less severe than they were or could be but just because we're gone a certain way down this slope doesn't mean we have to go all the way to the bottom.

      Quote Originally Posted by unoduetre View Post
      The stakes can be very low for people who e.g. have 10 houses each in a different country. If their home country collapses, they'll just move. I don't think their stakes are very high. Should they lose their votes?
      The situation is slightly reversed there. It's in the whole country's best interest to try to keep such people around and not piss them off.

      Quote Originally Posted by unoduetre View Post
      Yes, but even if you teach people how to fish, they won't be able to do it, even if they're brilliant fishermen, if they cannot afford to buy fishing nets and there is no fishing net shop nearby. I think this argument is correct in general, but it totally misses the problem of the initial capital which is crucial for this argument to work.
      So you taught them to fish and they're really good but then all their equipment breaks and they ate all the fish and didn't plan ahead in any way so they're back to square one? I guess there is a point in there about culture, if they actually had sensible instincts then they wouldn't be in this situation in the first place, they would have bootstrapped their own civilization a long time ago.

      There's this big meme about 3rd world countries who are fundamentally incapable of governing themselves that if we just give them enough money then they will be the same as us. To move back to a concrete example look at the history of natural resources in Africa. The moment foreign money starts flowing in the first thing governments do is build gold palaces and guns and starting killing each other. The Chad pipeline in 2000 was different. The World Bank laid out a spending plan for the oil money (this much goes to education, this much goes to transport, this much goes to health etc.). People have a moral panic when they realise how close this is to colonialism. But that's the difference between people who actually want to help and people who just virtual signal.
       

    10. #10

      Re: Philosophical Topics in Light Novels/Manga/Anime (off-topic thread)

      Quote Originally Posted by lambda-sky View Post
      Wealth is a heuristic which applies to all sectors though. You don't have to list all the possible jobs and assign values to them. Just let the free market sort it out.
      Your proposition is to use a heuristic when one can use a more direct method of evaluating. You can use a screwdriver, but you suggest to use a spoon to screw. It's a less effective solution (unless there are different motives behind it, than getting best scientists, doctors etc. ).

      Quote Originally Posted by lambda-sky View Post
      Historically that *is* the reason though. Europe doesn't have natural resources or isolation from enemies or luck or whatever. They had rules and values. And innovation. One thing severally holding back innovation in the 18th century governments was lack of accountability. You lend money to the crown and the king decides actually he's not going to pay you back. What are you going to do about it? He's the fscking king.

      Then the Dutch established Rule of Law, this concept that the law applies to everyone equally so you can always get your money back against anyone. When there is a correct balance between risk and reward then investment is what drives innovation and technology. The French had a revolution instead but the outcome was the same. Equality before the law is the great driving force behind European dominance. And obviously America inherited that.
      There are plenty of examples of countries which became poor not because of the rules and values they hold. Examples:
      Eastern Europe - many of the countries (not all of them) became poor because they were first robbed by a bigger, stronger country (Germany) and then forced to adopt an ineffective economic system by another bigger, stronger country (communism, the USSR). Their rules and values had nothing to do with that. The Marshall plan was blocked for this countries under the influence of the USSR and their resources were later exploited for the benefit of the USSR (You might be interested in this for example: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Holodomor)
      Europe after world war II - despite having very similar rules to the US, the problem in Europe was that there were many smaller countries instead of one big country. So there were differences in opinions (which are a natural thing if there are many agents) in these countries and because the countries were so similar they could form unions against each other, which leads to wars. This is not directly based on their rules and values, especially for the countries which were attacked and not the attacking ones. The US didn't have a neighbor which was strong enough, so they could easily force their own rules on their neighbours without going to a war with an opponent with similar strength. That's why Europe became poorer than the US at some point.
      Countries of native Americans - their rules and values had nothing to do with the fact that more technologically advanced countries robbed their resources. They were originally less technologically advanced because they were isolated (it was something not based on their rules and values (in comparison, Japan is an example of a country where it was based on their rules and values)). Also, the main reason why they lost wasn't their level of technology, but diseases brought from Europe. So their economic situation before the conquest and their economic decline following it had nothing to do with their rules and values. Before the conquest one could even consider some of the countries rich and prosperous.

      These were just some examples.

      You are not addressing these issues at all in your argument that everything is caused by differences in rules and values. It's an oversimplification of the real state of affairs.

      Quote Originally Posted by lambda-sky View Post
      I would argue they need to make THEMSELVES stakeholders, you can't just give it to them. The way you incentivise is to make the road clear.
      The way how it works in business is that managers are being MADE stakeholders, because this aligns their aims with the aims of the company.

      Quote Originally Posted by lambda-sky View Post
      Such a person still wouldn't have a stake. We're talking about people who travel thousands of miles to get to Europe. It makes no difference at all which specific country they land in. My point was that if Germany collapse or enters a war, the native Germans will stay and rebuild or fight because it's their homeland and they have no where else to go. The "refugees" won't. Even if they can't go home they will move to the next richest European country. I mean think about it, the whole reason they are here is exactly because they are unable or unwilling to rebuild/defend their actual home. So you need to be really careful about treating them like equals.
      If they bought their only property in the country which is going down it would be very difficult for them to just move to another country. It the country is going down, the prices of the properties are probably very low, so even if they sell their property in this country they couldn't buy another similar property in another country. So they're tied to the country because of the property. And they have high stakes.

      Quote Originally Posted by lambda-sky View Post
      I think what's important is that they're affected by the outcome, not their personal nihilism or lack of self awareness. It's interesting to note that we've come a long way. The original basis of citizen voting was that you are a man so you can be drafted into the military to fight as a result of policy decisions therefor you have a right to vote on them. Heinlein argues further in that direction, you should actually serve in the army to "earn" your vote. I guess what I'm saying is the rules for voting now are far less severe than they were or could be but just because we're gone a certain way down this slope doesn't mean we have to go all the way to the bottom.
      If this kind of rules is present, what's the problem with forcing the immigrants to do exactly the same thing as non-immigrants (e.g. joining the army to "earn" their voting rights). I see no difference here.

      Quote Originally Posted by lambda-sky View Post
      The situation is slightly reversed there. It's in the whole country's best interest to try to keep such people around and not piss them off.
      I don't get why it's in the interest of the country not to piss off people who don't care about the situation in the country in particular because they can always move elsewhere and their stakes are low. Let them move, lol. They have no incentives to improve the situation in the country. Short selling is easy nowadays.

      Quote Originally Posted by lambda-sky View Post
      So you taught them to fish and they're really good but then all their equipment breaks and they ate all the fish and didn't plan ahead in any way so they're back to square one? I guess there is a point in there about culture, if they actually had sensible instincts then they wouldn't be in this situation in the first place, they would have bootstrapped their own civilization a long time ago.
      No, the equipment doesn't break, but they don't have it at all in the first place. It's like teaching people how to invest. You can teach people how to invest and some of them will become great investors (e.g. there are many virtual stock market games (they use real stock market data) which allow people to learn how to do it with virtual money (I don't mean virtual currencies, but just worthless virtual "money" specific to a particular platform). Some people might become great at them. It doesn't matter for them though if there is no one who actually wants to give them real money to invest and they don't have any. One the reasons might be that they live in a poor country and there are not enough people with money. And unfortunately people usually give other people money because on their personal connections. Giving money to foreigners living in a different country doesn't happen too often. And besides that, they would only keep a small portion of the investments they would made. That's why most employees of investment banks are not millionairs, ha ha, despite being experts in investing.

      Another example is teaching people in central Africa how to design processors. They can become great processor designers, but it won't help them if there is no whole supply chain of necessary things starting with silica quarries, copper and iron mines, the whole industry which produces machines for these quarries and mines, the chemical industry to produce explosives to use in these mines, the optical industry to produce microscopes needed for quality checks etc. Guess what, they need the electronic industry to be present already to be able to create factories and production lines so they can build the processors. I think it's pretty obvious that it's a vicious circle and there is the bootstrapping problem.

      There are only two ways to escape the bootstrapping problem. Either one needs to repeat the whole technological advancement process which takes hundreds of years, or one can get external investment and import the necessary machinery. It was one of the reasons why the US provided the Marshall plan to the western Europe after the war and not just waited for them to rebuild. It would take much longer. All of these things are pretty obvious.

      And you said that they should have bootstrapped long time ago. To make claims like that, you need to take a look at why certain civilisations bootstrapped faster and certain ones slower. An interesting argument is the following one: civilisations in colder regions needed technology to survive in the cold climate (clothes, buildings, food). The civilisations in hotter regions didn't need it. Don't you think it had some influence? Climate is certainly not a part of the rules and values.

      Look at these guys. (I'm not claiming they're poor and that they don't do these things for fun and profits from YT, but this has no impact on my argument.) Imagine they did the same thing with different materials and in a different country. How much could they earn, if they built something like that with different materials in California and sold it? Don't you think they have enough entrepreneurial spirit?


      Quote Originally Posted by lambda-sky View Post
      There's this big meme about 3rd world countries who are fundamentally incapable of governing themselves that if we just give them enough money then they will be the same as us. To move back to a concrete example look at the history of natural resources in Africa. The moment foreign money starts flowing in the first thing governments do is build gold palaces and guns and starting killing each other. The Chad pipeline in 2000 was different. The World Bank laid out a spending plan for the oil money (this much goes to education, this much goes to transport, this much goes to health etc.). People have a moral panic when they realise how close this is to colonialism. But that's the difference between people who actually want to help and people who just virtual signal.
      And I agree with this point mostly and this is where the rules and values play an important role. If one gives money to people with rules and values which do not promote good management, investment, etc. they won't manage them well and they won't invest. It's very simple. But in this particular case, I think it was more of a problem with rules and values related to the power structures in these countries. In other words there were not enough checks on the rulers not to steal the money. So they stole them.

      BUT

      On the other hand, what institutions like World Bank, IMF etc do is much more than that. They only want to provide money when the rules align with the neoliberal ideology, and this ideology is NOT good for the poor countries. It basically opens all of their markets to other countries. Opening markets in this way only makes sense if there is comparative advantage, but the country we are discussing also must have some comparative advantage. E.g. if the richer country is better in producing technology, the country we are discussing about might be better at producing ecological food. If there is no comparative advantage for the country, it might be more sensible to keep the market closed until the country builds at least one type of business with comparative advantage, and open it afterwards (South Korea is a good example of this strategy, I think).
      Last edited by unoduetre; 07-06-2019 at 12:47 PM.



      I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it. (Evelyn Beatrice Hall)
      Information wants to be free. (Stewart Brand)

    11. #11

      Re: Philosophical Topics in Light Novels/Manga/Anime (off-topic thread)

      Quote Originally Posted by unoduetre View Post
      Eastern Europe
      I guess this would be an example of how bad luck can derail anyone.


      Quote Originally Posted by unoduetre View Post
      the problem in Europe was that there were many smaller countries instead of one big country.
      That's not always a problem. The reason Columbus found America in the first place is because he was surrounded by dozens of little kingdoms and could literally go from king to king asking for money until he found someone crazy enough to fund him. The reason China never had colonies the way Europeans did is exactly because they were one big unified country at that time and the Hongxi Emperor decided it would be a good idea to burn all their ships.

      And even though America is one big unified country it's arguably their rivalry with the Soviets that drove American innovations so far so fast in the 20th century. So I wouldn't say that conflict is necessarily bad.


      Quote Originally Posted by unoduetre View Post
      That's why Europe became poorer than the US at some point.
      This is a fair point though.


      Quote Originally Posted by unoduetre View Post
      Countries of native Americans - their rules and values had nothing to do with the fact that more technologically advanced countries robbed their resources. ... Before the conquest one could even consider some of the countries rich and prosperous.
      They were "rich" because of where they were though, not because of anything they built. As you say it was disease that done in the native Americans more than anything else. The inverse has also happened e.g. Papua New Guinea was never fully conquered because the natives are immune to malaria and foreigners are very very not immune. I guess these are examples of your luck factor again. Note that Papua New Guinea never became anything more than an island of savages chasing animals with pointy sticks despite all this luck though.


      Quote Originally Posted by unoduetre View Post
      The way how it works in business is that managers are being MADE stakeholders, because this aligns their aims with the aims of the company.
      Managers had to do something to get themselves into that position though. You don't grab a random person off the street and make him a stakeholder with the belief that now he'll work hard. It's just human nature that people don't respect anything they didn't earn.


      Quote Originally Posted by unoduetre View Post
      don't get why it's in the interest of the country not to piss off people who don't care
      Because they are the ones creating jobs and bringing money into the economy from outside. If Communism has proven anything it's that workers without leaders and innovators are useless.


      Quote Originally Posted by unoduetre View Post
      No, the equipment doesn't break, but they don't have it at all in the first place
      How can someone be a "brilliant fishermen" and never had any equipment ever? I thought that was implied in the premise.


      Quote Originally Posted by unoduetre View Post
      Another example is teaching people in central Africa how to design processors.
      I don't think this example works on multiple levels. One because the whole point of our modern global economy is everyone specializes in what they're best at. Nobody mines silicon and sells processors. It's a long pipeline of companies each doing one small part. Two because with the prevalence of the internet anyone can learn VHDL and simulate their processor designs with software. At some point you probably want to synthesise and test on real hardware but a $20 FPGA is not a prohibitively cost for anyone.


      Quote Originally Posted by unoduetre View Post
      I think it's pretty obvious that it's a vicious circle and there is the bootstrapping problem. ... There are only two ways to escape the bootstrapping problem. Either one needs to repeat the whole technological advancement process which takes hundreds of years, or one can get external investment
      The bottom line here is that even if they don't have any money or technology at all they own the land and they get money for letting foreigners mine it. So there is always a starting point. I disagree that you need to replicate the whole technological advancement process, there is no reason they can't sell ore and use the money to train engineers who then create and sell IP. Someone else can put the 2 together and sell processors. It doesn't have to be one group doing everything. I stand by my point that the reason they get stuck at step 1 is because a lack of rules and values. And it doesn't matter how much money you pump in from the outside if they are fundamentally incapable of organizing themselves.


      Quote Originally Posted by unoduetre View Post
      An interesting argument is the following one: civilisations in colder regions needed technology to survive in the cold climate (clothes, buildings, food). The civilisations in hotter regions didn't need it. Don't you think it had some influence?
      Yes. Unfortunately it also affects the path of evolution but that's a taboo topic.

      I'll watch your video later sorry.
       

    12. #12

      Re: Philosophical Topics in Light Novels/Manga/Anime (off-topic thread)

      Quote Originally Posted by lambda-sky View Post
      Because they are the ones creating jobs and bringing money into the economy from outside. If Communism has proven anything it's that workers without leaders and innovators are useless.
      This can be true and it can also be false. It depends on what these people do. If they only buy and sell houses for example, they do not create jobs, or the number of jobs is insignificant. If they own companies with many employees, then it's correct. No all rich people own many companies in relation to the money they own. E.g. I do not consider things like day-trading as job creating activities. Money market activities usually create much less jobs that e.g. mining or industry. What about automation? What if their factories are very automatised? I remember some rich people recently proudly announced their fully automatised factories. Should people strip them from their wealth then?

      Quote Originally Posted by lambda-sky View Post
      How can someone be a "brilliant fishermen" and never had any equipment ever? I thought that was implied in the premise.
      The school that tought the subject to them had the nets and they lent the nets to them. The school was e.g. provided by a charity foundation from the west and they provided the nets. etc. This was only an example. There are many possibilities. I've given a more realistic example about the stock market below this comment.

      Quote Originally Posted by lambda-sky View Post
      I don't think this example works on multiple levels. One because the whole point of our modern global economy is everyone specializes in what they're best at. Nobody mines silicon and sells processors. It's a long pipeline of companies each doing one small part. Two because with the prevalence of the internet anyone can learn VHDL and simulate their processor designs with software. At some point you probably want to synthesise and test on real hardware but a $20 FPGA is not a prohibitively cost for anyone.
      Heh. One needs to have access to electricity for the soldering gun. (I know some villages in Africa still have problems with that.) $20? Do you know how much money people in some regions earn per month? Where to buy FPGA? etc. etc.


      Quote Originally Posted by lambda-sky View Post
      The bottom line here is that even if they don't have any money or technology at all they own the land and they get money for letting foreigners mine it. So there is always a starting point. I disagree that you need to replicate the whole technological advancement process, there is no reason they can't sell ore and use the money to train engineers who then create and sell IP. Someone else can put the 2 together and sell processors. It doesn't have to be one group doing everything. I stand by my point that the reason they get stuck at step 1 is because a lack of rules and values. And it doesn't matter how much money you pump in from the outside if they are fundamentally incapable of organizing themselves.
      Not all land has ore. That's one thing. What if foreigners bring their soldiers instead of paying them? I think the US is a fan of this approach. American Natives still have a lot of documents confirming their land ownership, I suppose. I think western hardware companies might be not very happy to buy their IP from this kind of startup in Africa. I suppose they'd like to visit their office at some point, but there is no office in a nice new building, only a small village with just a group of people designing processors. Would a hardware company consider them a reliable partner? Where are rules and values in all of these?
      Last edited by unoduetre; 07-06-2019 at 01:04 PM.



      I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it. (Evelyn Beatrice Hall)
      Information wants to be free. (Stewart Brand)

    13. #13

      Re: Philosophical Topics in Light Novels/Manga/Anime (off-topic thread)

      Quote Originally Posted by lambda-sky View Post
      If Communism has proven anything it's that workers without leaders and innovators are useless.
      I think the experiment in marxist communism has proven that:
      - marxism is authoritarian;
      - marxism and capitalism in which one huge company owns everything are very similar, the bigger the organisation, the less active and innovative it becomes, if the organisation is the whole country, then…;
      - if one takes people from the working class and puts them in the position of the ruling class they will quickly adopt the rules and values of the ruling class and become a new ruling class, ignoring the place they came from (the reason is that some rules and values are often consequences of external circumstances and not some internal choices people make);
      - central planning doesn't work (they didn't have powerful computers then, so maybe it could work under some circumstances, but it'd still be very easy to do it badly, so I am not very convinced about it);
      - people need incentives to work effectively, e.g. paying the same amount to people who produce results and to people who do not produce results is not a good idea.

      I do not agree that hierarchical organisation is necessary for the society to work properly. Flat structured companies often produce better results than companies with many levels.

      So it depends how you understand the word "leader". If you understand leaders as first people who make innovations, convince other people that things can be done, organise people etc. then I agree with you. If you understand it as people who have power, then I disagree with you.
      Last edited by unoduetre; 07-11-2019 at 10:58 AM.



      I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it. (Evelyn Beatrice Hall)
      Information wants to be free. (Stewart Brand)

    14. #14

      Re: Philosophical Topics in Light Novels/Manga/Anime (off-topic thread)

      Correct me if I'm wrong, but I think we reached one of the core beliefs of ideological capitalism, libertarianism etc. This one: "people are rich and poor predominantly because of their own choices and actions and not because of external circumstances." In other words this core belief is the assumption that capitalism is a just system and it provides justification why some people should be richer (because they earned it by their own choices and actions) and some people should be poorer (because they made some stupid decisions, were stupid in general and/or didn't work hard enough).

      Assuming you believe this statement is true, can you provide any hypothetical situation, that if it happened in the real world, it would convince you that this statement is false? In other words, can you show that this statement is falsifiable?
      Last edited by unoduetre; 07-06-2019 at 01:26 PM.



      I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it. (Evelyn Beatrice Hall)
      Information wants to be free. (Stewart Brand)

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