1993-11-09 - Re: Private and Public

Header Data

From: doug@netcom.com (Doug Merritt)
To: cypherpunks@toad.com
Message Hash: 671f26919003603ba4f37ce5ab0f7f3dea7c33ea22e55386d54c44aa6ca57d82
Message ID: <199311090524.VAA05639@mail.netcom.com>
Reply To: <arthurc@crl.com>
UTC Datetime: 1993-11-09 05:23:32 UTC
Raw Date: Mon, 8 Nov 93 21:23:32 PST

Raw message

From: doug@netcom.com (Doug Merritt)
Date: Mon, 8 Nov 93 21:23:32 PST
To: cypherpunks@toad.com
Subject: Re: Private and Public
In-Reply-To: <arthurc@crl.com>
Message-ID: <199311090524.VAA05639@mail.netcom.com>
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain

Arthur Chandler <arthurc@crl.com> said:
>  Does the government have the right to know how much money I make, and 
>from what sources? The IRS says yes, absolutely. [...]
>  Right now, there seems to be a kind of social contract between us and 
>the government: it protects us, provides free schools, etc etc, in 
>exchange for which we have to pony up a fair share of our earnings. It 
>follows, doesn't it, that the government has a right to enforce its laws 
>saying that everyone must pay that fair share of taxes?
> [...]  What do you think?

I'm a non-standard brand hybrid Libertarian plus other noncategorizable
views, and I agree with the notion of the social contract, but I have
critiques that fall outside anything you said, which cause me to view
with pleasure the possibility of short-circuiting the previous government
taxation schemes.

I think that government supported infrastructure can be a good thing;
I approve of having fire services which are not profit centers, for instance.
On the other hand, I'm in favor of minimizing such things, whereas
governments tend to maximize the number of "services" and therefore also
taxes to support them.

Governments and their bureaucracies and services and laws etc. appear to
inescapably grow ever-larger over time, regardless of the impact of that

I see online crypto-banking and related technologies/services as a trend that
will force governments to downsize back to their appropriate role of
providing only the most necessary of infrastructure.

The precise nature of "most necessary" is highly controversial. But if they
can only collect as much taxes as people are willing to pay in order to
maintain minimum infrastructure, then it becomes a system that continues
to stay in equilibrium rather than growing out of control.

In other words, avoid the tyranny of the majority and of self-serving
representative democracy, and create a world in which we get only that which
we are willing to pay for. People will pay a lot for that which is truly
valuable. At the moment we are a long way from getting what we pay for.
Doug Merritt				doug@netcom.com
Professional Wild-eyed Visionary	Member, Crusaders for a Better Tomorrow

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