Date archives "August 2009"

Responding to the Maghrebi/Genovese challenge

Ignacio de Castro has written a fine trilogy on medieval p2p-like practices, that is somehow framed as a challenge to our p2p approach. It describes the practices of jewish maghrebi traders in the Middle Ages and their international support network, and wonders why they ultimately lost against their Genovese more ‘capitalist’ competitors. Ignacio asks: could… Continue reading

Technological inventions and human history

Kevin Kelly continues his interesting investigations into the Technium. True, to some, including me, his approach may appear sometimes as technological determinism. In this text, Kevin Kelly makes the point that individual changes in consciousness matter little, because they don’t scale up, but that changes in tools and technologies change the brain circuitry of millions… Continue reading

John Heron: there can be no participatory epistemology without mutuality

Below, John Heron reacts to the article, Participatory Perspectives on Counselling Research, by David Hiles, which we presented before. John Heron: “From my perspective a fundamental weakeness of the paper is that Hiles attends exclusively to the epistemic wing of participatory inquiry, that is, to the nature of a researcher’s participatory knowing, and not at… Continue reading

How a Community Stopped Worrying about Journals and Learned to Love Repositories

HEP scientists seldom read journals, preferring preprints instead! The analysis of citation data demonstrates that free and immediate online dissemination of preprints creates an immense citation advantage in HEP, whereas publication in Open Access journals presents no discernible advantage. In addition, the analysis of clickstreams in the leading digital library of the field shows that… Continue reading

After destructive capitalism, can there be a constructive capitalism?

Today, in the better economy we’re building, less carbon emitted does add to national wealth. And that’s exactly why Cash for Clunkers matters. Cash for Clunkers isn’t perfect — but it’s a promising start. It’s the kind of economic reform that’s sparking a revolution in Constructive Capitalism. I missed a bunch of interesting blog articles… Continue reading

Planning through the market?

Excerpt from a contribution to thinking about political strategy, by G. William Domhoff: (Article: Planning Through the Market: More Equality Through the Market System) “If non-market planning is a disaster and markets are primarily instruments for exploitation, then it is no wonder that leftists have not been able to project the necessary vision of a… Continue reading

What property rights in virtual resources might look like

Important essay: John W. Nelson. 2009. “The Virtual Property Problem: What property rights in virtual resources might look like, how they might work, and why they are a bad idea” Summary: “Virtual property’ is a solution looking for a problem. Arguments justifying ‘virtual property’ lie among three common themes — Lockean labor theory, theft protection… Continue reading


A re-post from the Golpe de Estado blog: Maghribi traders organization system is similar to current P2P processes, maybe similar enough to consider them P2P pioneers (Maghribis I). However Maghribis suffered from intrinsic disadvantages that deterred their expansion and success (Maghribis II). Maghribis succumbed to history while Genoese, a proto-capitalist society survived stabilising the foundational… Continue reading