Re: poly: Modeling Economic Singularities

From: Nick Bostrom <>
Date: Wed Apr 22 1998 - 15:38:34 PDT

Robin Hanson wrote:
> >Are you saying that in addition to this effect there is another effect,
> >namely that property rights prevent investors from engaging in a race
> >to first in which they burn up excess returns?
> Yes, but the degree of property rights required to have this effect
> is very strong, and unlikely to be seen anytime soon.

What degree would have that effect? For instance, in the Batman
example, what property rights could prevent some competitor from
inventing a successful cartoon? Do you require that the right to make
cartoons is patentable? What about a race to invent new forms of
entertainment? Would it be possible to patent the right to entertain?
Where does the regress end?

Nick Bostrom
Department of Philosophy, Logic and Scientific Method
London School of Economics
Received on Wed Apr 22 21:45:25 1998

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