Community, Economics, and Growth

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Mikael Lunardi
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Joined: Mon Oct 09, 2006 8:04 pm

Community, Economics, and Growth

Post by Mikael Lunardi »


Many of you I have not yet met, or have met in passing, while some I have had the tremendous opportunity to spend a good deal of time discussing issues close at hand.

While I am new to SL, and equally new to the NFS/CDS, I hope that the reader can ascribe to me the sincerity in which the following is felt and intended. The small handful that I have had the opportunity to chat with can attest to the quck progression in thought that has come over me during the last 3-4 days, and I am sure all such conversations and email/PM's are on document and could in fact be posted here without my objections, for I think they would tell the tale of discovery that carried me to this point.

My first exposure to NFS and the CDS came via the recent article about the Judiciary Bill and Ashcroft Burnham in the October Issue of SLBusiness Magazine. (Any of you that have not yet had the chance to read the article I HIGHLY recommend it---I would simply copy and post it here but do not want to violate Copyright Laws) The vision depicted of a small, Civicly organized community building the foundation for a future growing nation was one that sparked various interests of mine (Economics, Political Science), and I decided to come into SL for the first time to see for myself what it was like. Surprised that it would even run at all on my computer---laggy, but a feat nonetheless--I wandered around for a bit before I found NFS, and then Colonia Nova (where I met my first citizens). I don't think that first evening did I discuss my ideas, as the opportunity did not truly present itself. The next morning I came again to this forum, registered, and then sent off a series of basically identical messages to several of the community members about the complex of ideas that I have.

(one of which wisely suggested I spend as much time as possible learning and socializing before posting in the forum, and I respect his advise, but in breaking from his advise I understand the reaction I may recieve from the community, especially those I have not had the time to meet properly)

During that day I then read and absorbed AS MUCH material from these forums, and available web material, on SL and NFS in particular, and while many aspects of the story are still hazy to me---and I should have definitely gone about the research before expressing my ideas since some of what I learned instantly obsoleted my ideas---that evening was the first that I got to speak with members of the community at length, and topics such as my ideas were discussed.

Again last night, after another day of absorbing information, I had the opportunity to discuss at length the developing of my ideas, and was astounded most of all last night by certain of the things I learned, and points of view I was able to ascertain, which brings me now to the point of this essay/starting point of discussion.

(I felt it necessary to describe my activities over the last few days so as to let the members of the community know my positon, so if I DO offend they can perhaps forgive, and also to give the clearest possible vantage of the point of view I currently possess)


First off, the most clear and concise description I have had of the role of government in NFS has been cited as the following (paraphrasing but trying to capture the meaning)

"That the constitution and government are but the most democratic means by which a few score of individuals could share a sim(s)"

And this point of view, once presented to me, basically voided almost all of the ideas I had up until that point because, if this is felt by ANY of the members of the community, much less a good number, then a lot of the progression of the government and rise of the rule of law is utterly pointless except in how it would serve the good of the current, existing members of the community. And I would feel guilty contributing to this rise of government, and the advancement of an age of "Empire of the Willing". I am but a new member of the community (not even an actual citizen as of yet), so my justification in trying to advance ideas that would greatly effect the course of history on individuals who are in anyway detached from such goals would be horrible.

What I have found in NFS from the citizens I have had the delightful opportunity to meet is a collection of intelligent, sincere individuals, all with different interests but similar in their scope and identity. To alienate any of the people I have so far met would be tragic, for me. NFS is indeed a haven for progressive thought in many areas, and this may be true of much of SL (I don't know yet), and, given the different interests and talents of its citizens may grow to be a beacon for these various areas within SL.

Why live, exist, commune, or contribute to any one area (SL/RL) over another? We have pangs of home and connected closeness with places and individuals who touch us and make us feel positively. This is what we refer to as Home, I suppose, and the question I have individually is--could NFS be my home? I would like it to be, if it proves out to be even a fraction of what I have experienced thus far.

Because it is easier to catagorize and organize things into diametric opposites I have been using the following terms to describe the roads I think that NFS is currently at the crossroads of choosing:
Expansionism, and Enclavism. Clearly these two would seem to be worlds apart, and in practice I am sure the community will actually progress with a blend of the two, but many of the issues at hand now will determine the tilt of that eventual progress.

The benefits of Enclavism is clear---that the community, one of the oldest yet smallest in SL would continue as it has been, a small group of individuals who almost all know each other personally.
The benefits of Expansionism are not as clear---they appear as potentials that for some it would feel as tragic to lose as it would feel to me tragic to alienate friends.

Enclavism is the easier path as it is easier for a group or nation to remain closed, to remain stable and continue on familar courses. Expansionsim is a very difficult path to follow, and even those among the Expansionist mindset could see themselves alienated or alienating.

What is important in group effort and cohesion is a common goal, a vision of the future. The Expansionist Vision of a far reaching Confederation of like minded states can still be achieved in two polar ways---the cloosely linked requiring very nearly our identical model and documents, or the loosly linked model of each nation building from its own citizenry their model, whether they start with our documents as a starting point or from scratch entirely. It might be that their form of government would be unique and it's rule of law the same, who knows?

The Enclavist vision is not as difficult to describe, or understand. Why grow, or change, when neither is beneficial unto itself?

The key is potentials---just BECAUSE there is the potential for rapid and expansive growth does not mean it must be pursued.

As a community I hope we can clearly come to a unanimous decision that leaves all individuals with the feeling that the right decision was made.

The foundations which are being built now, and with which the Expansionists feel that their vision could be brought to life, are not diametrically opposed to Enclavism---they are but tools, and can be used toward both ends. A Judicial System that Protects and provides Equal Opportunity is a natural development of democratic institutions. It makes sense that NFS, with a democratic government, would need a judicial process by which to make its system stable, and some of the older material on the WWW often point to the lack of a judicial process in NFS.


What the new Judicial Bill, and the other democratic institutions create, for NFS is the possibility for the development of novel RL business and economic models. Many have been attempted, or abound already, in the unsecure outside realms, but what could stabilize and legitimize them in NFS is the very foundations which are being built now. Let me now take each idea that I have (that are not necessarily unique to me, from what I understand from my research and discussions), but more importantly in the context of discussion, present why I do not think they should necessarily be constrained to either of the community Visions.

Neufreistadt Bank---This I understand already exists, although I will admit I am almost completely ignorant of its functions. BUT, what potential exists is that our bank---unlike the proliferation of unregulated banks I understand exist in the outside realm---be within a stable, rule-based government. It would give users (non-citizens and citizens alike) the confidence to use OUR bank because they know that it is regulated and subject to rules. The fact that it exists and functions within a stable and predictable government model would be it's biggest selling point, in comparison to, (in fake example) "The BeBo CASINO BANK".

Neufreistadt Securities Exchange---Again, same selling points of the bank (and perhaps working in conjunction with), all sorts of securities could be marketed and exchanged. Municipal Bonds, Corporate Inventment Bonds, Stocks, N-Bills (a proposed idea I have for a Bank stabilizing security that would work both as an Inflation Hedge and predictable Growth Investment), CD's.

Corporate Services---Incorporation, a service that I am sure many are familiar with being an "offshore" RL service, or a niche service in places like Nevada and Delaware, is something that I see could be a BIG commercial enterprise that we could undertake. I understand that the CYBERLAND stock exchange already exists, but it has but one issuing, which I don't know if it represents the DEMAND of incorporation services, a difficulty in UNDERWRITING issuances, or merely a lack of investor interest. I think any or all of the 3 can be duly tackled and overcome. From what I have seen of the CYBERLAND SX, it can be competed with successfully.

Currency Exchange---An obvious banking service (that I assume is already undertaken by the NFS bank), proliferated with probably hundreds of small competitors, and dominated by something like 6 or 7 large profile organizations. My proposal would be to be HIGHLY proactive in the approach here----I will not go into blinding detail, but there are obvious, and less visibly, many more subtle avenues for profit here.

NONE of these ideas have ANYTHING AT ALL to do with the size or expanse of our community. They can be carried out without harming or involving ANY citizen that did not want to actively participate, and even more still benefit ALL citizens. I know, although cannot remember who off-hand, a few of our citizens are already members of a Financial Services Organization, and they can obviously work closely with said projects and their input, advise, and expertise would be of great benefit, but I would suggest that whatever institution is necessary to create these 4 areas of Economic Services be tied TO the government (and deemed something such as the Commerce Department, and perhaps growing from the Artisanal Branch's reorganization), for legitimacy reasons, and not be centered in a private firm. I think the existing Financial Services Organization should be related to this proposed Commerce Department in the way that Morgan-Stanley-Dean-Whiter is related to the Stock Exchanges, The Federal Reserve, and the SEC.

What IS important for them to work is the rule of law, a stable government, and protracted, passionate work. The lack of any of those things would doom them to mediocrity or worse.


Again, some thoughts on the current Enclavist and Expansionist Visions.

The Expansionist Vision requires certain fundamentals to succeed as I understand it to be in the SLBusiness Magazine article. First and foremost would be a change in citizenship requirements, removing landownership as a prerequiste, and the rule against renters and subletors. I understand and completely agree with the thought process that requires landownership as a prerequiste to citizenship <<<or at least a lump sum escrow and monthly tax idea as proposed by G.Dimsum or P.Eldrich, but this only because I have no desire or use to "own land">>>. And this question in itself is what best, so far in my investigation, frames the fundamental question at hand in the debate----what community ideals (such as landownership for citizenship) would have to be sacrified for a successful attainment of the Expansionist Vision, and to what end and degree is Expansion from the outside desired.

If there is a community somewhere that wanted to adopt some or all of our ideals, our consititution, our rule of law, could they not do this themselves without subjecting themselves to our CDS---even better for them as they could apply what parts of the contitution and legal system as they saw best for their community, without our input (except perhaps as requested)? The CDS is a great idea in prinicipal, but does it not work also in individual scales rather than a large scale? Would it not be for the best if both communities grew on their own, without clogging our legal system with outsider's issues, without having to sacrifice certain codecs to allow entering the CDS (landownership)? If the CDS was comprised of many individual states that simply used their unified voice at times to lobby for things from the Lindens, would this not be the purpose?

The Enclavist Vision that NFS/CN grows from within as necessary, instead of a forced induction from outside, but as a natural growth from inward, in principal, makes more sense than the proactive expansion from outside. Why would another region want to subject themselves to OUR duly elected Chancellor when they could just as easily elect a Chancellor, a SC, an AC and a judiciary of it's own?

The United States does not actively try and make Puerto Rico, The Virgin Islands, Guam, or Mexico it's states, while it might take various degrees of interest in their form of government and due process.

NFS/CN can be a beacon of the way things CAN be done, without having to directly pull regions under it's control.

Without the threat of warfare, there is not the need for "protection" from hostile states, so a strong coalition of independant states is unnecessary.

And the ECONOMIC benefits of our Government and Rule of Law can benefit ANYONE who wants to participate in them, be they citizens or not.

CONCLUSION (finally):

I would definitely like to discuss each person's point of view on each of the above subjects---and I humbly admit my status as a potential-yet-nonresident. I know probably much of what I have said pinpoints me as an uninformed outsider, new to SL, but these questions of Growth and Community are what fundamentally face NFS and the development of the CDS.

I believe the CDS can no doubt grow and thrive, but as a very loosely connected organization while we grow from within.

I have not made a decision as to which approach I would like to see happen because truly I think the community needs to decide between the Expansionist and Enclavist models----a completely unanimous decision would be the best case scenario, and while I'm probably naive to think it possible, it is something to attempt. So please don't think that I am making an impassioned appeal on either side of the EX or EN debate, but instead want to frame the discussion relating to these points of concern so that they can be properly discoursed directly.

I would like to work with the Government and Citizenry to make my Economic Ideas come about, and with whatever projects are already underway in those regards, because, as I said, without having to stake a claim as far as which side of the EX and EN debate I stand, I think the Economics are universal and applicable to whichever blend of those courses we take as a community.

With warmest regards I look forward to discussing these topics. Please forgive my new, and I'm sure sometimes ignorant, status.

Mikal Lunardi

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Pelanor Eldrich
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Wonderful Post!

Post by Pelanor Eldrich »

Mikael this is a wonderful and well thought out post. You have assimilated most of the ideas a civics and have some great insight on some of the "big questions" around here. We'd love to have you as a citizen and I look forward to working with you, especially on the financial/economic side.

It took me 3 months of forum heckling just to vaguely understand the constitution before I joined. You're a much quicker study.

Pelanor Eldrich
Principal - Eldrich Financial
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Chicago Kipling
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Post by Chicago Kipling »

It's certainly good to have you with us. Thanks for your careful investigation and discussion of the matters at hand. As time goes on, I would encourage you to consider shorter and more focused posts that will garner broader response, but you do have some good things to consider here and I hope many more intelligent than I respond.

A good photograph is like a good hound dog, dumb, but eloquent. ~ Eugene Atget
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