Archive for the ‘Seasteading’ Category

Seth and I would like to welcome our colleague Greg Mitchell to the blog.  Take a gander  at his first post.  Here’s hoping he becomes a regular.

Robin Hanson’s week-old post is mind bending. Read it. His particularly penetrating and concise description of democracy got me thinking.

Hanson characterizes democracy as the political system that is “designed to emphasize the hardly-considered fleeting delusory thoughts of the median voter rather than the considered opinions of our best experts.”


But in the study of institutions, we always place democracy at the positive end of the spectrum, contrasted with dictatorship, always at the negative end.

Why is this inefficient system of political organization considered so desirable?

Because the market for government is really dysfunctional. Transaction costs of “switching providers” are extremely high. To move from one country to another includes a large monetary cost, lots of time in preparing to immigrate (legally or illegally), learning a new language and culture, and leaving all the important people and places one has ever known in favor of the uncertain. People don’t have a lot of choice over which government governs them.


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Saw this at Reason’s excellent Hit & Run.

I love the sound of a floating burning man.  It’s officially called Empherisle, and it’s put on by the Seasteading Institute.   Seasteading is so damn cool.  There’s something very Snow Crash about it.  Too bad I get freaked being out of sight of land.

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