Trekonomics - a new book about Star Trek's futuristic economy

Discussion in 'The War Room' started by TheGoodNews, Aug 8, 2015.

  1. TheGoodNews

    TheGoodNews Orange Belt

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    This looks like fun. A crowd funded book that discusses Star Trek's moneyless economy and how we might get there?

    https://www.inkshares.com/projects/trekonomics

    There have been a few books lately about how emerging technologies might change our society for the better. And perhaps even a few that say it might not. Usually there are some slight changes that bring some improvements as well as a few new problems, perhaps, but other than that things always seem more or less the same. You decide. Futuristic predictions usually are fun and I don't expect they will go away anytime soon.
     
  2. lapollarecords

    lapollarecords Red Belt

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    I'm more interested in how did the empire manage to build the death star.
     
  3. Rum

    Rum Champion of Champions

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    That does sound like fun. I always thought the economics were the most half-assed part the world-building in the Trek universe so anything that fleshes it out is welcome.
     
  4. IDL

    IDL Gold Belt

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    Don't know much about the star trek economy. Did they not have a medium of exchange or was it just digital currency?
     
  5. TheGoodNews

    TheGoodNews Orange Belt

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    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=

    Gillian: "Don't tell me, they don't use money in the 23rd century?"
    Kirk: "Well, we don't."
     
  6. RTL

    RTL NostraMMAus™ Platinum Member

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    Well, Star Trek did foreshadow some of the technology we're using today, so this is quite interesting.
     
  7. Aegon Spengler

    Aegon Spengler Gold Belt

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    If we invented replicators this would all be possible, without them, I dunno.
     
  8. IDL

    IDL Gold Belt

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    It would present the interesting problem of 'getting someone to do something' without being able to pay them.

    financial reward is the current primary method.

    People would voluntarily need to fill all the necessary positions in society. Unless there are other types of reward systems in place I can't imagine how undesirable jobs would be filled without some serious coercion.

    It would be possible to instill a sense of collective duty, but that has limits.

    Huxley depicted a caste system in his book A Brave New World, where certain castes would be raised specially for certain roles and would be conditioned to love their servitude. That would be one way of addressing that problem.
     
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2015
  9. Aegon Spengler

    Aegon Spengler Gold Belt

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    There's always the option of "taking turns" doing the shitty jobs, for everyone except NASA or doctors who save people's lives.
     
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2015
  10. Makani

    Makani Ain't Nobody Ever Been Free

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    I think if you could fulfill people's needs adequately to a certain point, a certain subset would pursue roles that benefited society for the simple pleasure of making the world a better place. When you're merely comfortable, the danger of losing that comfort encourages the hoarding of resources and pursing jobs that allow that. There are other perks to these roles, such as social prestige, but of course no one is going to be a sewer technician or proctologist for the glory. I mean, the #1 excuse for having a shitty job is "Well, it pays the bills."

    A lot will depend on what technology gives and takes away from us in the coming century.
     
  11. Sohei

    Sohei Manning the air

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    In the 24th century, humans use a gift economy.

    Capitalism only exists among backward alien races, so think about that ;)
     
  12. KILL KILL

    KILL KILL Gold Belt

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    Throughout the various series, there's been a lot of confusing information. For instance, many of the other cultures use some form of currency. How could the interact with people of the federation that don't?

    A prime example would be Quark's bar in DS9. He operates on a federation space station, but provides gambling and is routinely seen counting currency.

    In the episode, Tapestry, Q takes Picard back in time to where he gets stabbed in the heart by a Nausicaan. This occurred over a game of dom jot, where Picard's buddy bet the Nausicaan some sort of currency. This happened in a bar on earth of all places.

    There are tons of other examples. So, I'd be interested in a book that sorts it all out.

    Here are some other references...

    http://en.memory-alpha.wikia.com/wiki/Money

    There have been a ton of mention of Federation Credits (whatever those are)
    http://en.memory-alpha.wikia.com/wiki/Federation_credit
     
  13. IDL

    IDL Gold Belt

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    The Ferengi depicted a negative view of capitalists

    "They and their culture are characterized by a mercantile obsession with profit and trade, and their constant efforts to swindle unwary customers into unfair deals"

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ferengi
     
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2015
  14. IDL

    IDL Gold Belt

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    Yeah I think people would naturally fill a lot of roles, especially if they were inspired (similar to how patriotism or religion inspires people)

    The shit jobs though remain the problem. Maybe if there was a religion based around doing shitty jobs as a way to go to heaven :D

    That fear of losing things you mentioned I think is one of the principals behind communism in terms of abolishing private property. It changes the dynamics if people are not seeking to acquire and protect things.

    Maybe the star trek depiction was close to how the communist utopia would look in theory.
     
  15. Makani

    Makani Ain't Nobody Ever Been Free

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    Well from what I understand about the Trek universe (Star Wars for life) there don't have any of our diseases and they can replicate enough food for everyone, so their society is close to perfect, and in such a society I would hope people would become closer instead of more individualistic, it is the sense of competition for resources and ideological superiority that creates much of division in society. Also, since we still see people in traditional jobs such as (space) doctor and (space) engineer, there must be those who aspire to callings or to use their talents. Maybe Picard always wanted to be a commander, or maybe he did it for the (space) pussy.
     
  16. Sohei

    Sohei Manning the air

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    They were supposed to be extremists for sure but they are a fairly accurate view of eccentric crony capitalists.
     
  17. Oedad

    Oedad Green Belt

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    Meh even if they explain how the money-less economy on earth works because of the impossibly futuristic advances in medicine and technology it still doesn't explain why colonists in some frontier federation colony shovel shit for no incentive, without all the comforts of developed worlds like Earth or Vulcan, and the constant threat of a Klingon cruiser attacking your backwards world and making you a slave in their very non-altruistic economy.
     
  18. IDL

    IDL Gold Belt

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    Maybe there was a giant Gulag system that was never actually shown in the TV series..
     
  19. Aegon Spengler

    Aegon Spengler Gold Belt

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    You could say the same thing about colonists who showed up in the "new world", full of danger and the unknown.

    Some people do things just for the challenge.

    It's also possible that the social systems in new colonies are a little less rigid, you could become a big fish in a small pond so to speak, in one of those places, while stuff is a little more competitive on the big planets.

    There's also the concept of patriotism or love of the Federation, a desire to see it expand and grow that could fill certain people and compel them to go out and build a life on some new world.

    As for the shoveling shit, that's mostly done by robots, or it's turn based. Sometimes you get to chill in the holodeck with a bunch of porno holograms taking care of your every need, sometimes you gotta shovel shit. I'd do one if it meant a bit of time doing the other...
     
  20. TheGoodNews

    TheGoodNews Orange Belt

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    That was done in the kibbutz movement and during the Spanish Revolution. Remember that guy vacuuming the floor in ST II, maybe it was just his turn that day?
     

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