Re: [decentralization] De-centralization IRL
- At 01:30 AM 9/12/01, you wrote:
>Time to de-centralize the financial markets?Today's economic and governance structures have inadequately registered
>Julian Bond email: julian_bond@...
some very large, pent up frustrations in the Islamic countries. I
blame this on the unquestioned power of governments to control their
citizens, and to take actions which harm other regions for the sole
benefit of internal decision makers inside national boundaries.
Governments work tirelessly to advance the interests of their
own citizens, exporting harms to other nations. 100 measures of
harms are gladly inflicted on neighbors, for the sake of 1 measure
of benefit within the geographic borders. Brokering to reduce this
dispararity is the opportunity of decentralization but it will require
Today's organizational system registers the tiniest whims of consumers
in western countries. Meanwhile, billions of people in Islamic
nations see only oil extraction activities, and foreign militaries.
The rightness or wrongness of the parties is an independent question to
the design of systems of organization. The activities of governments
and corporations, by design, follow the financial imperative. But they
are relatively blind to other dimensions, and externalities. These
externalities can never be rectified by legislation or regulation alone
-- or by terrorism. What is needed is decentralization.
Western governments are a mechanism. This is a defective mechanism
which does not serve Americans or Europeans well. This mechanism
must be somehow improved because it functions all too well in
advancing *only* the interests of its constituents to the absolute
exclusion of other regions. Let's not even talk about the problem of
corrupt partnerships between business and government.
Governments reaction to todays events will be imposing even more
barriers, more restrictions on privacy of communication, more regulation
of decentralized commerce. That is absolutely nuts. This is like the
period leading up to the Vietnam war. A billion Christians in the
western nations drift towards war with 1 billion people in islamic
nations, in a collossal mistake driven by defective systems of
I want you geeks designing the internet to understand the consequences
of your designs. You are just as responsible for today's world, as
nuclear engineers, in the 1940's.
Western systems of social organization are the real root of our problems
in America. We have today, a monopoly on governance, by government
*people*. People in governments are sometimes good and wise, sometimes
not. But all governments are based ultimately on force, and all are
based on hard geographic lines. By force they all impose laws and crush
minority opposition. In the US for example, more than 2 million people
are in jails and prisons, with 5 million on parole and other supervision.
The reasons most Americans support their government are easily enough
understood, and the mechanisms of operation also obvious. Government
is a collective assertion of power by hierarchies of social and
financial organizations within the geographic borders. Those social and
financial structures collaborate because of the tremendous financial
and security rewards in government. But these organizations do,
in fact, span the national borders, which offers some hope. Maybe not
much but some.
Consider, it might be a good thing if governments lose some of
their power to block, tax, and interfere with economic collaborations
that span borders. Put aside your fear for a moment-- and keep paying
your taxes by all means-- but intellectually I ask you, why is it
morally right that the public sector control 1/3 of the GNP in most
countries, under threat of imprisonment of anybody who disagrees?
The economy has always had various means to route around governments.
This decentralization must reach further into the Islamic nations, so
that their peoples can achieve their own aspirations and desires.
Bluntly, we need to napsterize the whole economy so that their
governments and our governments cannot organize into warfare.
Put positively, decentralized computing and communications can
- improve the accuracy and efficiency of dissemination of information,
- improve the effectiveness of the nodes (ultimately, people) in
understanding and responding to that information by their actions,
- improve the webs of trust and honesty necessary for efficient business,
- ultimately give all humans the power to refuse to cooperate or
participate in any wars, by giving them the independent means of living
and prospering in private enterprises outside the visibility of governments.
To re-emphasize, war is not the answer.
U.S. terrorism experts say Islamic terrorism cannot be stopped because
it is composed of cells. What if the entire global economy is also
comprised of economic cells? What if there are no skyscrapers and no
pentagon? Who will the terrorists kill? Their local network will
find them and neutralize them, much faster than foreign governments.
I feel that it is a key objective that all peoples can express their
economic requirements empirical and explicitly into the network, and
that other people can understand these expressions of demand and satisfy
them with offers of production in satisfaction of those demands on a
When demand signals and supply signals are available there is no doubt
that economic collaborations of any required scale will be quickly
organized, whether in the form of corporate or private partnerships.
Computers and the internet are good at that.
The contribution of decentralization is to provide avenues for people to
route around these existing, large, centrallized forces in the global economy
that block freedom and organize military actions between peoples.
Governments, thru their two implements of police/military power and
centralized control of the financial system, are the very foundation of
barriers to finance and trade across geographic borders between
countries. There is an unquestioned assumption of the legitimacy of
these border arrangements, which all governments are eager to maintain.
These barriers must be softened, and relations between peoples must be
normalized. Governments impose excessive barriers to travel, excessive
fees and costs on money flows by individuals and small business, which
are not levied on large corporations. I repeat: the national boudaries are
the basic problem.
We have unicode now. We have machine translation. We have
technical solutions for electronic money, and global integration of B2B
commerce, distribution and supply chain. We have the means for globally
integrated multicompany accounting, and allocations of income and costs.
Regarding yesterday's events. Just remember, they began with government by
force. Governments cause wars, and the planet is getting too small for