cause everybody hates a tourist
posted by owen hatherley at 3:22 pm
Something I wondered about, after reading Hayek: to what extent would the availability of a sufficiently super supercomputer modify his argument about the intrinsically unmanageable complexity of human economic affairs? It ought to be possible in this day and age to simulate a planned economy, the same way we simulate atomic explosions and global warming.
Hmm, interesting - isn't this something you could have a go at in your lunch break or when the boss isn't looking? From software theologian to software central planner! It's curious how cybernetics is so often spun as a right-wing discipline, much as the internet is alleged to be a libertarian's paradise, when there's surely as much Communist potential in either (cf Voyou's interesting comments a while ago on open source software as incipient socialism, and the fact that open source designers do not like being told this).
Hayek's basic conceit on prices is that they successfully agglomerate widely distributed information; a complex enough computer-based system could aim for this, but presents other problems (e.g., single-node central systems are especially vulnerable to attack and/or collapse). With a well-designed and appropriately redundant/decentralized computer system, one might approach Oskar Lange's ideals of market socialism with great efficiency [one of Hayek's major pricing works, The Use of Knowledge in Society, is a rebuttal to Lange]. Still, the administrative costs of gathering and inputting this information would be a (huge?) deadweight loss.
I have lots of problem with Lange Model socialism, which falls into the common socialist trap of only being concerned with spot markets, but with the right inputs and Beer's system it could theoretically navigate those efficiently.
WTF?The control room looks contrived.Market research (is that what yall r talkin bout?) should be conducted by wealthy groups/entities that employee millions of people to go door to door seeking whatever information. Eff machines
check out this: http://www.venezuelanalysis.com/analysis/2162The dream is not over - btw I thought the column picture was rather stylish...
Thank you Ben.Interesting link - it is all kicking off now, and looking grimly familiar... Surely a reminder that one of the main reasons why serious attempts at planned economies tend to fail doesn't even need to be theorised - massive hostility from outside, usually helping out with destabilisation inside, adding to the usual 'socialism in one country' dilemma. It's particularly tragic that the only sustained peacetime attempt at co-ordinating socialist economies was Comecon, crippled from the start by Stalinism (or here, technocratic Brezhnevism to be precise) and its attendant distrust of democracy in all its forms...
and of course what is also left out is the amount of planning in so-called 'market' economies - ironically especially in their neo-liberal guise. The financialisation of capital, in its current forms, wouldn't be possible w/o computers either. I did like Chavez's message expelling the US ambassador though; that's transgressive scatology...
911 was an inside job.Watch 911 Taboo and September clues.
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