[MUD-Dev] re: Curtailing the 'Super-Rich Effect'

Matt Mihaly the_logos at achaea.com
Wed Apr 18 22:00:43 New Zealand Standard Time 2001

On Wed, 18 Apr 2001, Phillip Lenhardt wrote:
> On Wed, Apr 18, 2001 at 07:31:24AM +0000, Matt Mihaly wrote:

>> I am pointing out that a realistic economy requires the vast
>> majority of people to live in poverty. It doesn't matter what
>> historical time period you pick. Perhaps in some future economy
>> everybody will be well-off. As it stands, they're not.

> The vast majority of people live in _relative_ poverty. In the
> United States, for example, the bottom 50% of residents live better
> than the majority of the rest of the world. And though it is
> arguable, I'd say that globally, people live better than they did
> 500 years ago. Fewer famines, fewer plagues, less warfare, more
> rights, etc.

Yes, agreed, and as I never tire of pointing out, almost everybody in
the west is what I consider to be rich. I get very annoyed whenever I
hear one of my players complaining about being poor. Spoiled bastards.

However, the US is not the rest of the world, and much of the world
still lives in basically shit conditions. Overall people definitely
live better, by standard quality-of-life measurements, than they did
500 years go.
>> I'm not sure what relevance castles have to economic systems
>> generally, but ok.

> Putting up a castle at a geographical chokepoint (along a river, in
> a mountain pass, on a bridge, etc) is a dandy way of making money as
> a toll collector.  It also restricts the flow of trade, so I'd say
> castles can have a rather large impact on economic systems.

My point was that we're discussing general economies, not specific
implementations of it. If the discussion is going to degenerate into
specific milieus, then I'll bow out, as I don't find that very
interesting. I was trying to discuss general economic theory in MUDs,
not economics as it applies to faux-medieval-themed MUDs. The general
principles should be applicable regardless of the mileu, and without
the general principles, discussing the specific milieu seems a bit of
a waste of time.

>> is just a piece of paper in a government office somewhere or, in
>> the case of something like an apple, it's often largely a matter of
>> possession being 90% of the law.

> Just curious, does Achaea provide a way for players to submit a
> text, with game-validated signatures on it, to some sort of city
> archive?  For example: two players draw up a contract for something
> that can't/won't be enforced by the game engine, they use a game
> engine feature to each sign it, and then they put it in the city
> archives where anyone can then read the contract and verify that the
> players did indeed sign it. I would think that something like this
> would make it easier for shop owners and city governments to have
> stable relations.

No, although that's something I want to do. The thing about contracts
though is that they have to be enforced in the jurisdiction in which
they're signed generally, and in the case of city and shop owners, the
city holds all the cards. It's not really any different from a
real-life government. The US regularly refuses to honour contracts for
instance (just ask Native Americans).


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