WorkLand: An overly-simple economic simulation.
Scenario: "Commons Based Beer Production" (apologies to Benkler).
Land: 1 acre lot near the middle of a large city.
Costs: Property tax (is this lower for an NPO?), water, tools, seed, fuel.
Landscaping: dual purpose by raising raw materials of food, medicine, soap, cloth, building material, dye, paint, cosmetics, fuel.
Employment: Barley, Hops and Yeast varieties are concentrated on, but the high variety of vines, nut trees, berry bushes, scrubby spices and greens are transformed into food/drug, soap, incense, art and beauty supplies,
ModeOfProduction: Syndicate "at cost" access to the MeansOfProduction so that profit through ownership falls to zero, and all workers are 'protected'.
Workers bid to rent the resources for frames of time that "make sense" for that resource.
Some problems to address:
- Pollution: noise, smoke/stink, water, mess
- Excessive holding is inhibited by making the tax 'progressive'.
Freedom is any action which is not Power. Power is any action which takes Freedom from another.
Why power must be withheld Edit
Power causes actors to 'externalize' costs because scarcity, destruction and restriction become profitable.
Why freedom is withheld Edit
Freedom would neutralize Power by eliminating PowerProfit from the list of costs (see Free Software vs. Proprietary Software).
How freedom is withheld Edit
Property law allows humans to hold far more resources than they could ever utilize themselves. With land this is called 'speculation'. With capital (and land) this is called 'capitalism'.
Capitalism could be controlled if at least *some* Land and Capital were "locked open" with a contract written in the spirit of the GPL.
Land speculation could be controlled if property tax were based on holding instead of on improvements. This could be enforced by owning an area of land large enough to be it's own tax district, then applying a GPL contract.
How the GPL solves this problem Edit
The GPL enables private property owners to enforce "at cost" access by contracting with the users that finally use those resources. The GPL allows workers to profit by requiring the Means of Production be 'Free'.
How to generalize the GPL Edit
Owners need a simple way of designating some of their private Land or Capital as FreeAsInFreedom. One way of accomplishing this might be through some kind of a lease contract.
older notes Edit
. What is the most simple representation of precisely *why* every human must work? I think this is a list of organic needs (air, water, food, shelter, etc.).
. What are the *means* by which these needs may be met? I think it is through "at cost" access to Land and Capital.
. A single-human economy has some validity, but cannot represent enough complexity. This seems valuable to begin thinking of a game or simulation.
. What is the smallest number of humans that can represent a meaningful 'economy'? I wonder if 3 is enough?
. How important is agriculture? I think it is inescapable. Food and drugs come *only* from animals, plants and fungus. If we utilize permaculture, we bring the means back to our doorstep.
. How important is division of labor? I think this is vital to ever 'succeed' the current system. When I say 'permaculture' I mean the useful organisms would be used to landscape our community, but anyone (and most people will) choose to have 'professionals' do the work because it will not be overly expensive to share when the machines are finally available "at cost" to the highest bidder.