10 Matching Annotations
  1. May 2021
    1. There’s many examples around the world of communities banding together to collectively govern a shared resource, like forestry, grazing grounds, and wells.

      If we all take action to do these things collectively, then it isn't a "tax" on any individual or corporation.

    2. For example, we know one of the ways to make people care about negative externalities is to make them pay for it; that’s why carbon pricing is one of the most efficient ways of reducing emissions. There’s no reason why we couldn’t enact a data tax of some kind. We can also take a cautionary tale from pricing externalities, because you have to have the will to enforce it. Western Canada is littered with tens of thousands of orphan wells that oil production companies said they would clean up and haven’t, and now the Canadian government is chipping in billions of dollars to do it for them. This means we must build in enforcement mechanisms at the same time that we’re designing principles for data governance, otherwise it’s little more than ethics-washing.

      Building in pre-payments or a tax on data leaks to prevent companies neglecting negative externalities could be an important stick in government regulation.

      While it should apply across the board, it should be particularly onerous for for-profit companies.

    3. The thing about common goods like public health, though, is that there’s only so much individual actions can achieve without a collective response that targets systemic problems. While we owe a duty of care to one another, it’s not enough for all of us to be willing to wear masks if there’s no contact tracing, no paid sick leave, no medical manufacturing and distribution capacity, no international sharing of vaccine research. And it’s not enough for each of us to be individually vigilant about our information if unscrupulous trackers are gathering up data we didn’t even know we were shedding, or if law enforcement is buying up that data on the private market to use for surveillance purposes none of us ever consented to.

      This example underlines that as a society we need better collective responses to many things which not only improves the lives individuals, but of society as a whole.

      A rising tide lifts all boats should be a government mantra rather than the more typical libertarian or republican responses of each person on their own. Without society and cohesion, neither individuals nor corporations can succeed, so let them carry more of the share that's due rather than externalizing all the costs.

    4. Even with data that’s less fraught than our genome, our decisions about what we expose to the world have externalities for the people around us.

      We need to think more about the externalities of our data decisions.

  2. Oct 2020
    1. For commercial surveillance to be cost effective, it has to socialize all the risks associated with mass surveillance and privatize all the gains.
    2. There’s an old-fashioned word for this: corruption. In corrupt systems, a few bad actors cost everyone else billions in order to bring in millions – the savings a factory can realize from dumping pollution in the water supply are much smaller than the costs we all bear from being poisoned by effluent. But the costs are widely diffused while the gains are tightly concentrated, so the beneficiaries of corruption can always outspend their victims to stay clear.
  3. Aug 2020
  4. Jun 2020
  5. Mar 2017
    1. oil and gas exploration in and around the Beaufort Sea concerns the people who live there, because they depend on the fish, seals, whales and polar bears for which the Beaufort Sea is vital habitat.

      As the ecological impact of the region is considered, it is worthy to note the group consciousness that the Alaskan natives experienced with regards to this risk. The heightened awareness of this ecological impact on the region became evident in the political activism and energy behind these local communities in the decade leading up to the project proposal. With the expanding presence of oil and gas extractive companies in the Northern Yukon and surrounding territories, a strong negative externality was exerted onto “fur-bearing creatures” and the resulting trapping lifestyle of the indigenous communities. Furthermore, the integrity of the region’s permafrost became comprised with the widespread and often times ill-measured construction of roads and conduct of industrial activity. Finally, the studied biodiversity of the Arctic region indicated that the ecosystem proved to be particularly vulnerable to the impacts of manmade industrial activity. These elements of vulnerability and danger to the Arctic region contributed to the notion that its ecosystem had become decidedly “disturbed” by the impacts of industrial development. This collective experience of a disturbed ecosystem led to the emergence of political activist groups such as Inupiat Paitot (or the “peoples heritage”), a political organization with the mission to serve all Alaskan natives against the external pressures of the oil and gas industries. As the development of a group consciousness among Alaskan natives grew, and subsequent grassroots organizations began to take on the political cause in the Arctic, national and international efforts to confront environmental science were simultaneously becoming a formalized and mainstream effort within into policy-making and industrial project consideration. Upon the initial arrival of the Mackenzie Valley Pipeline Inquiry in 1974, the stage was set for a grassroots movement against the project. In defense of an ecosystem at severe risk of damage, Alaskan natives now possessed the political and social capital necessary to bring about a concerted effort to preserve the region’s resources as well as the self-determination of indigenous communities.

      Stuhl, Andrew. Unfreezing The Arctic: Science, Colonialism, and the Transformation of Inuit Lands. Chicago, IL: The University of Chicago Press, 2016.

  6. Feb 2017
    1. 1.2: But aren’t there are libertarian ways to solve externalities that don’t involve the use of force?

      Well, this article forgets about law. Law and justice still would exist in a libertarian society.

      I haven't read the rest of the article, but this is probably the answer to most of his criticisms of libertarianism, and it is fair that this guy is missing it, because law is difficult and most libertarians forget about it or think that purely monetary transactions between persons would solve everything, thus making libertarianism a crazy creed (as I've done myself for a time).