Liberation Tech

Technology enables one to generate surpluses. Those surpluses can be traded for the things you can't make yourself. This creates an incentive to get really good at providing a few things people want in abundance and trade them for the things others make really well. Since no one person can be equally good at everything and may not have the necessary resources even if he was, everyone benefits. Eventually, when surpluses get so large that trade by barter becomes impractical or must be conducted over long distances, a more easily transportable medium of exchange is created. We call it money or currency.

In addition to making it easier to conduct trade, money democratizes it. It makes it possible to sell intangibles, such as shares of ownership(stock) or to trade the cash value of one physical good in exchange for the cash value of another. It even makes it possible to buy and sell money itself in the form of credit. Acquiring more money gives you the wherewithal to trade for the raw materials you need to make even more of the things you sell, which creates even more surplus, creating an abundance of finished goods at competitive prices where there would otherwise not be, which allows others to live better. Money used to make more money is called capital. The act of using it this way is called capital formation. The philosophy that holds that an economy based on capital formation, individual ownership of private property, competitive free markets, and individual pursuit of profit via voluntary mutual consent is the best way to promote prosperity for all is called capitalism.

Economic self-sufficiency acquired via free-market capitalism handily reduces the basic survival and self-advancement skills to a few essentials:

  • the willingness to work
  • the ability and willingness to learn new skills
  • the ability to create or acquire one or more income streams using those skills
  • the ability to use that income to amass a capital base from which further income can be derived.

That income used correctly allows you to acquire all the things you need to make yourself self-sufficient.

These are what you might call the general skills of economic self-sufficiency. The more specific skills depend on which goal you are pursuing. We will look at those next.