Tuesday, July 20, 2021

[vhhjqpfe] costs of preventing peasant revolt

plan A: prevent peasant revolt via income or wealth redistribution.

plan B: prevent peasant revolt via authoritarianism.

plenty of subjective debate over which is better.  (inspired by the current split in American politics.)

objectively, which method costs more?

costs of plan A: tax collectors and other mechanisms to extract money from the rich.  decreased productivity caused by distortions in incentives to work.

costs of plan B: police state, mass incarceration, censorship, and other mechanisms to make sure peasants don't gain enough resources and momentum to revolt.

costs in question should be opportunity costs (economic costs), as always.  unfortunately, these are typically difficult to calculate or measure because it requires peering into the alternate universe which did the next best thing.  (what is the next best thing?)

also tricky is relating the amount and costs of A or B to the amount of probability reduction of peasant revolt.  minimum cost is likely a mix of both.  (but minimum cost is not necessarily best, subjectively.)

peasants have been trying to revolt for a long time (perhaps constantly), and bourgeoisie have consequently been attempting to put down peasant revolt for a long time.  each historical peasant revolt is a lesson in not doing enough of A or B, perhaps a lesson in insufficient oppression if B had been the plan.  a lot must already be known.  where has it been documented and analyzed?  what's in the Illuminati playbook for staying in power?

Machiavelli's "The Prince" is satire of such documentation.  where's the real deal?

maybe the costs of A and B change radically over time due to changes in technology, so lessons from the past are not easily applied to the present.  but observing indicators of not doing enough only requires reading people, and people don't change so radically.  though people's methods of deception constantly evolve.  for example, authoritarian measures to prevent political movements from gaining momentum inspire technological countermeasures to gain momentum covertly.

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