Understanding Big Tech Dominance Requires Economics, Not Conspiracy Theories

– May 17, 2021

“Intellectual property laws, not childish conspiracy theories, explain the persistent dominance of Big Tech and social media.” ~ Peter C. Earle


From AI to UBI?

“AI cannot credibly justify a radical policy like UBI at this point. Misunderstanding AI adds to a natural fear of the unknown though we know that technological change always proves beneficial to the economy and that society will have ample resources to aid anyone who might be displaced by AI in the future. People should concentrate on how AI can automate mundane tasks and stop technological fear mongering. Your job, like the world, will still be here tomorrow.” ~ Robert E. Wright & Aleksandra Przegalinska


The Blockchain and the Future of Everything

– April 30, 2021

“The current apparatus of centralized data processing and storage is not only incapable of adequately handling the prerequisite needs of this digital society, but it might also turn it into a dystopia. What we need is a highly decentralized and efficient infrastructure that is impervious to manipulation. Blockchain technology seems to be the essential component to make the digitized society of the future a foundation for empowerment and growth rather than an Orwellian nightmare.” ~ Ethan Yang


Why Do Cryptocurrencies Use So Much Energy?

– April 30, 2021

“Critics are upset about the energy consumption of cryptocurrencies. But it’s not the energy needs of these products that is the problem. Let niche communities enjoy their strange energy-intensive activities. Rather, what is disturbing is that most consumers of cryptocurrencies don’t perceive the true cost of the services they are using. And so these very, very expensive products have, by accident, gone mainstream.” ~ J.P. Koning


Consumers Who Want Privacy Are Finally Getting Their Way

– April 28, 2021

“The Internet and the app economy might someday live up to their promise. Rather than invading our personal autonomy, collecting data, and monetizing every aspect of our lives, they might start showing some respect for people. In contrast, if there is one thing that we should have discovered about governments in the last year, it is their lack of responsiveness to evidence, public opinion, science, or anything but their own power over people and their pride in always being right.” ~ Jeffrey Tucker


New York’s Vaccine Passport Program Is Already Failing

– April 6, 2021

“Vaccine passports are inhumane, discriminatory, and will lead America on a direct path to a China-like social credit score system that restricts our unalienable rights. The good news for you New Yorkers is that the Cuomo Administration and IBM are the dream team of incompetence. Excelsior Pass will almost certainly fail, because a legacy governor and a legacy tech outfit are not sophisticated enough to produce a working totalitarian product for their COVID Safety Regime.” ~ Jordan Schatchel


Gift Cards: When Good Products Do Bad Things

– April 2, 2021

“For now, Apple is free to keep providing gift cards as before. Which means that scammers will probably not face additional hurdles to coopting gift cards for extortion payments. As for the rest of us, that means we get to keep enjoying a hassle-free gift card experience.” ~ J.P. Koning


The Right Not to Get Matched

– March 31, 2021

“We all need and deserve tools that we understand and can control. That is why I think we should be really vocal about it and resist technologies that instead of supporting and collaborating with humans, take over and make decisions on their behalf. Pop culture feeds us these scenarios as inevitable. Let’s write different ones in our real lives.” ~ Aleksandra Przegalinska


How to Be an Anti-Authoritarian

– March 30, 2021

“We can choose to be more open in face-to-face conversations arising organically with friends, family, neighbors, and colleagues. Even in those conversations, the intolerant will ridicule you and blame you for the troubles in the world. Yet your display of genuine curiosity will evoke curiosity in others. Out of your courage to share ideas and with a mutual mindset of curiosity, freedom can be rediscovered.” ~ Barry Brownstein


The Lego Movie Isn’t Really about Freedom

– March 11, 2021

“I might be wrong that The Lego Movie portends a future of one generation of planners replacing another. Maybe it is just a fun cartoon after all. Still, the idea of master builders battling each other over what to make out of the pieces is a chilling one. If you watch it again, just remember that we are the pieces and we are not in charge. Then the movie takes on a completely different caste.” ~ Jeffrey Tucker


A Pro-UBI Talking Point Debunked

– January 29, 2021

“Perhaps the robot apocalypse really will come at some point. Perhaps not. But what is clear is that it hasn’t come yet. Until it does, we should target our aid to Americans in need – not to the entire population.” ~ Nick Buffie


On Richard Epstein on Regulating “Big Tech”

– January 18, 2021

“The chief condition for such competition to remain real and effective is that government not obstruct it. As long as government itself remains neutral and nondiscriminatory, the best protection for consumers and for the polity is the free-market process.” ~ Donald J. Boudreaux