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Thesis: once a country's middle class reaches a minimum ratio, it's time to break and form a new nation.

People are most comfortable to be around their own class, even if they aspire to rise above it.

Even the upper class would rather not have to live with the lower class had they not need someone to do the dirty jobs.

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@machado if rich/poor gap is large enough, the only way to avoid a bloody revolution is to go off and form a new country.

In software this is equivalent to technical debt bankruptcy and re-create from scratch.

@ykgoon I think there's a variable that heavily influences how much that's true: how much the rich depend on the poor to produce the wealth.

If the rich only need to monopolize and export natural resources, they can pull a scorched earth on the poor to stop them from rebelling, and use foreigners for the technical jobs.

If the rich depend on an extensive network of highly trained professionals, they'll need to incentivize education with social mobility.

@ykgoon Basically, the bloody revolutions happen to elites who dabble in oppressive behaviour without fully committing and pushing the masses back into illiterate subsistence farming.

@machado I think I agree. If the dynamic is such that the rich depends on the poor a lot, then there will be tendency to close the gap, social mobility is still possible.

My proposition is on cases where it's not, then migration and forming new societies (not necessarily nations) of middle class is the best solution.

The natural next question is "where to migrate to?" But before the making that jump, is my proposition even true?

What do you say?

@ykgoon I think you are overall correct. There's an interesting book, The Dictator's Handbook, that touches on these issues.

On the issue of middle class migrations, I bet there's a lot of real world data available. It's called human capital flight.

@machado which leads me to the more important thesis: if migration is made as 'easy' as changing OS, then we'd be spared a lot of bloodshed.

@machado by migration I also include the building of new colonies/societies, apart from joining an existing state.

@ykgoon For the perfect ideal version of that, making migration that easy would require infinite space, resources, computational power, and ftl travel, so it's pointless.

For the imperfect realistic version, you would get a lot of bloodshed and then back to where we are right now.

@ykgoon To put it in other words, your thesis requires that either A- the laws of physics can be changed in an extreme manner, or B- human nature can be changed in an extreme manner, for all current and future humans, forever.

@ykgoon You can do this test with most idealistic ideas. If it requires either a different world or a different humanity, it won't work in reality.

I call it the Efficient Monster Hypothesis. The state of the world reflects available perversity, so you can't just beat the monsters with clever ideas.

@machado Zero chance for B happening. But why scenario A?

I think crypto assets already reduce friction for migration just a bit.

@ykgoon Crypto assets have near zero real world impact, beyond letting some rich people play around with speculative bubbles.

Any position worth occupying will be taken by those willing to kill for it. Literally and metaphorically.

@ykgoon Look at metalheads. Used to be one of the most elitist (norm-enforcing) subcultures. Then a large group campaigned for lessening norms and letting metalcore posers in. Now the metalcore posers enforce new norms where liking actual metal is a sign of being an elitist and worthy of exclusion.

Now metal communities online are divided between being mostly metalcore, or just the worst kind of elitist, with the moderates dropping out.

@machado interesting. I dunno that scene but from what you describe it sounds like a repeating cycle of tribe breaking, just as any nation state that gets into class warfare.

@ykgoon It's basically what it is, except not really about class warfare. That's a different beast.

It boils down to the nature of norms. Norms aren't cosmic edicts baked into the fabric of reality. Crypto often sounds like an attempt to make that happen.

But norms are things people come up with and enforce. If you make all norms meaningless, you get back to the state of nature, and then after a period of violence you get back to now.

@machado crypto as a mechanism is contentious, we can discard that for now.

So what I heard here is that even if people are allowed zero friction to move around communities, there will still be disagreements that fights can't be avoided. Sounds right?

@ykgoon Sounds right. And if everyone is allowed entry everywhere, there is no motivation to maintain attachment to any space, as it can be taken over by others at any moment. So you might as well take whatever you want and move to the next.

It's similar to the communist problem with free riders.

@machado that I agree, Europe is a clear sign of that.

But given that people wanna be around their own class and breaking of tribes is inevitable, it's a shame that meatspace isn't made more malleable.

@ykgoon I'm increasingly inclined to believe a certain amount of conflict is inevitable.

But class is not the same as culture. Classes can coexist within the same culture. But the culture has to allow for it, with adequate norms, and incentives for cooperation over competition.

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@ykgoon It basically boils down to the old "it's exclusion when you do it, it's a safe space when we do it".

I don't see how cryptocrap could do anything to change this dynamic. It's something so simple that it can happen even in very small groups of people. All it takes is three people.

@ykgoon More than money, class is a language. There's an inherent discomfort in dealing with people with whom there's no mutual understanding.

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