Saturday, March 12, 2005

FLOW Priorities

Offline a FLOW member asked about FLOW priorities for world betterment. Although he was thinking of aLomborg-like list (e.g. “Should potable water come before or after global warming?”), I have found it useful to approach the problems from a higher level of generality. For instance, if we open the world in the manner suggested below, the people themselves will solve their potable water problems rather quickly. The following list was selected based on the dramatic leveraging effect of each item.

FLOW Priorities:

In order to most rapidly create a world characterized by peace, prosperity, happiness, and sustainability, our most urgent focus should be to:

1. Open the world.
2. Free education.
3. Recreate the academies.
4. Create institutions to prevent “tragedy of thecommons” problems.

I will explain each in turn and why each will lead to dramatic improvements in human well-being.

1. Open the world: Free institutions based on the rule of law have allowed individuals to create truly staggering gains in human well-being while creating ever-growing spheres of stable peace. Our top priority must be to increase the rate at which these institutions are developed around the world.

While various top-down forces, including multi-national corporations, the U.N., the U.S. government, IMF and World Bank, and others have attempted to impose institutions on nations, a bottom-up approach is likely to be more powerful and more sensitive to local conditions. The best way to release the powers of a widespread bottom-up approach is to reduce or eliminate restrictions on the global flow of goods, services, capital, and people across borders. Restrictions not only limit the growth of wealth, they also favor vested interests within wealthy nations and favor large multi-nationals in the developing world (unlike individuals, large corporations have the ability to get around restrictions).

Opening borders would allow billions of individuals to sell their services on an open market more easily. By participation in a global market, these individuals will begin creating significantly more wealth than they create at present which will provide immediate benefits to their locales. They will also create a related market in human capital development as people around the world discover which capacities lead to dramatic increases income. And finally, they will create a bottom-up initiative that supports stable government.

Mass participation in the market-dimensions of the civil society of the developed world will seed an understanding of and demand for the kinds of institutions that have allowed for the creation of wealth in the developed world. This mass demand for rule of law, education, and civil society, in combination with massive mutual dependence on global trade, will create a steadily thickening culture of peace around the world. This bottom-upapproach, with the implied gradual irrelevance of national borders, is the fastest and surest approach to lasting peace on earth.

FLOW idealist action items:

A. Support massive entrepreneurial creation through microfinance, De Soto property rights reforms, cyber off-shoring and cyber education, and ever-expanding free enterprise zones around the world.

B. Greatly increase immigration into all developingnations, with the eventual goal of open borders around the world.

C. Reduce or eliminate all tariffs and subsidies in the developed world.

D. Support structural changes as outlined in theFraser Institute’s “Economic Freedom of the World” report.

2. Free Education: Just as government control of the“commanding heights” of the Soviet economy left theSoviet economy in a shambles, government control of education is leaving human life in a shambles. It has been abundantly shown that governments lack the capacity to make millions (or billions) of individual decisions wisely. Institutions, including educational institutions, which are the spontaneous outcome of billions of individual human decisions will be vastly more responsive to real human needs than are collectivist educational institutions.

Existing educational institutions egregiously fail to educate many young people; do a mediocre job of educating many more; and provide a limited, one-dimensional, and often soul-destroying job of educating even those who appear to succeed within the system. As billions of human beings become exposed to global market forces, they have a right to the best possible education. And only by means of billions of individual decisions, each reflecting specialized local circumstances, can adequately responsive educational institutions come into being. In order to reduce the inevitable backlash against global competition, it is crucial to allow everyone an opportunity to obtain an education that will allow them to earn a decent income. As long as governments remain the dominant player in the educational marketplace, most people will be handicapped by a sub-optimal educational experience.

FLOW Idealist Action Items:

A. Reduce or eliminate government involvement ineducation at all levels.

B. Reduce or eliminate all government restrictions tooccupational entry.

C. Support entrepreneurial initiatives in education at all levels.

3. Recreate the academies: Although the allied institutions of rule of law, property rights, and an entrepreneurial civil society remain the core foundations for the creation of ever-increasing levels of human well-being, the production and dissemination of new knowledge through formal institutions has at times resulted in truly remarkable advances in human well-being, especially in the realms of science and technology.

Unfortunately, outside of the realms of science and technology, the academies have largely had a negative influence on human well-being, at least in the 20th century. By means of the support and dissemination of truly dreadful Marxist thought, through the support and dissemination of less dreadful but still misguided paternalistic and infantilizing social policies, and through the ongoing support and dissemination of attitudes of impotence and anger, on balance academic humanities and social science fields in the 20thcentury have led to few gains in human well-being and remarkable harms.

This need not have been the case. It is possible to re-imagine academies that were useful and responsive to human life, and that contributed in a positive way to human development. By making the academies more responsive to the needs of those who want to learn and improve themselves, the academies could once again play a positive role in human life. Changing the academies may be, however, the most difficult and intractable of the problems that we face today.

FLOW idealist action items:

A. Reduce or eliminate all government financial and legislative support for universities (including, again, university-monopolized occupational licensing).

B. Encourage new entrepreneurial entrants into the post-secondary education and intellectual research markets.

C. Encourage private philanthropists to be far more judicious concerning their gifts to existing universities.

4. Create institutions to prevent “tragedy of the commons” problems: If the world is opened up in the manner recommended above, global wealth and economic growth will increase at a truly remarkable rate. In any circumstance in which there are resources that are not owned by private entities, those resources are likely to be destroyed due to the “tragedy of the commons” problem.

Our oceans and our atmosphere are probably the two most significant unallocated resources at present, though there may be others. In order to ensure that ongoing economic growth does not result in widespread environmental degradation, it is important that we develop a system for assigning property rights to unallocated resources. In addition, unallocated resources may trigger old-fashioned wars even as peace is spreading around the world through commerce. Therefore it is important to begin a process of creating institutions that will allocate those resources that are currently unallocated.

FLOW idealist action items:

A. Investigate proposals to allocate global resources to prevent tragedy of the commons problems.

B. Support entrepreneurial efforts to create institutions that support the best of those proposals.

Conclusion

By means of focusing our energies on achieving these four goals, we can rapidly create a better world. The first one will result in dramatic increases in global prosperity while spreading peace around the world. The second one will distribute the benefits of prosperity to those who would otherwise be trampled in the global competition while simultaneously allowing people to re-create lives based on meaning and community. The third one will reduce the rate at which academies prevent good things from happening and, over time, will give us universities that actually add value in realms other than science and technology. And the fourth one will ensure that the dramatic rate of global growth does not result in serious environmental degradation or resource wars.

FLOW:

1. Open the world, and let goods, services, capital, and people flow across all borders.
2. Free education, and let authentic learning and well-being flow into the human community.
3. Recreate the academies, and let authentic knowledge flow into minds around the world.
4. Create institutions to prevent “tragedy of the commons” problems, to ensure that ever-increasing global flows are peaceful and positive for humanity.

20 Comments:

Blogger Rich Molumby said...

I have an E-Cash Machine site/blog. It pretty much covers Making money on the web.

Come and check it out if you get time :-)

8:39 AM  
Blogger St Louis Cardinals BUFF said...

So many blogs and only 10 numbers to rate them. I'll have to give you a 10 because you have done a good job. Great Job,

Free Access To More Information Aboutsmall business directory

8:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey i got here searching for cash make online
Your sites not too bad!

You got good rankings for them keywords cash make online

Check out my site
cash make online

12:55 AM  
Blogger Adult Personals said...

Hey i got here searching for computer affiliate program
Your sites not too bad!

You got good rankings for them keywords computer affiliate program

Check out my site
computer affiliate program

12:23 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yo, This blog is pretty neat. You should check out mine sometime. It pretty much covers guaranteed income online related stuff.

2:56 PM  
Blogger Johnjon said...

Wow, I really like this one. I have a website that talks mostly about make money with cash flow note You should check it out sometime.

2:12 AM  
Blogger Clickbank Mall said...

Come Visit Santa at his blog and tell him what you want for Christmas,

3:44 PM  
Blogger Dokdo Island said...

hello
offers or buyers

These days trade business much easier since internet development.
On net, we can find well made trade portal site.
In fact, those cool sites help your trade business.
How many countries? what kinds of products?
Yes, we can not count.
Around the world, someone looking for your products, and a company
want to import your goods.
Trade portal site become huge marketplace so it called "emarketplace."
How many emarketplace do you know.
Which emarketplace do you recommend.
I am proudly tell you the emarketplace "Buykorea.org"
You may not buy korea, but you can buy and sell what you want.
Buykorea.org trade service managed by kotra(un profit trade agency)
Your marketing budget will be save and business increased.
Check what do you want to know about
korean product.

7:09 PM  
Blogger Fluffy said...

I just came across your blog. Nice job. I will definitely bookmark it!

I have a start affiliate program site/blog. It pretty much covers start affiliate program related stuff.

Come and check it out if you get time :-)

2:44 PM  
Blogger research guy said...

Hello Michael Strong, been looking for the latest info on cash flow note and found FLOW Priorities. Though not exactly what I was searching for, it did get my attention. Interesting post, thanks for a great read.

6:20 AM  
Blogger Good Stuff said...

Hi there Michael Strong, I had been out looking for some new information on cash flow industry when I found your site and FLOW Priorities. Though not just what I was searching for, it drew my attention. An interesting post and I thank you for it.

4:15 PM  
Blogger research guy said...

Hi there Michael Strong, I had been out looking for some new information on business notes when I found your site and FLOW Priorities. Though not just what I was searching for, it drew my attention. An interesting post and I thank you for it.

6:34 PM  
Blogger Good Stuff said...

Hi there Michael Strong, I had been out looking for some new information on cash flow note when I found your site and FLOW Priorities. Though not just what I was searching for, it drew my attention. An interesting post and I thank you for it.

7:15 PM  
Blogger Good Stuff said...

Hi Michael Strong, Out surfing for information on cash flow industry & happened upon your site. While FLOW Priorities wasn't exactly spot on, it did strike a note with me. Thank you for the really good read.

12:38 PM  
Blogger research guy said...

Hi Michael Strong, Out surfing for information on cash flow industry & happened upon your site. While FLOW Priorities wasn't exactly spot on, it did strike a note with me. Thank you for the really good read.

1:36 PM  
Blogger Good Stuff said...

Hi there Michael Strong, I had been out looking for some new information on homebusinesses when I found your site and FLOW Priorities. Though not just what I was searching for, it drew my attention. An interesting post and I thank you for it.

1:31 AM  
Blogger Good Stuff said...

Hi Michael Strong, Out surfing for information on american cash flow & happened upon your site. While FLOW Priorities wasn't exactly spot on, it did strike a note with me. Thank you for the really good read.

12:49 AM  
Blogger Good Stuff said...

Hello Michael Strong, been looking for the latest info on real estate note and found FLOW Priorities. Though not exactly what I was searching for, it did get my attention. Interesting post, thanks for a great read.

9:22 PM  
Blogger research guy said...

Hi Michael Strong, Out surfing for information on business notes & happened upon your site. While FLOW Priorities wasn't exactly spot on, it did strike a note with me. Thank you for the really good read.

1:50 PM  
Blogger Good Stuff said...

Hello Michael Strong, been looking for the latest info on cash flow industry and found FLOW Priorities. Though not exactly what I was searching for, it did get my attention. Interesting post, thanks for a great read.

7:36 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home