Human-backed derivative

Serious discussions on politics, religion, and the like.
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Re: Human-backed derivative

Post by Plane_talker »

This would be a lot like living on a livestream camera, only more tedious.

Would there be no danger of identity theft?

It might be nice to grubstake a struggling artist and benefit along with his rise in popularity, but that is what you get from buying a drawing from the guy , pre-fame.

So what would be the odds that I would wind up with the equivalent of a blue period Picasso , if I just commission a drawing from each of an hundred struggling young artists? Better than lotto odds? Do I have to wait not only for the artist to gain fame , but also for him to die to reap the maximal reward?

I think a more realistic human backed derivative is the dollar.

A Dollar is mostly worth money because people are willing to work to get them, if people were not willing to work in exchange for a dollar, it would not be worthwhile to collect them.

But because there is an international conspiracy of agreement that a Dollar is worth a certain amount of human attention and effort , it is worthwhile to work for them , then use them to gain the work of others.
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Re: Human-backed derivative

Post by Plane_talker »

By the way, I borrowed you.

If I get what I want from this loan, my friends and I will enjoy a lively discussion of the ideas you eloquently present.

So far we each disagree in different ways, that is a really good result in my book.

Now I didn't ask first , I just went to the site where your labors are on display and seem easy to take .

I am not really offering payment either, just pointing out that your human derivative is already desirable and available as a product.

I will look here later , if you state that this bothers you, even slightly, I will never again do it.

But if you feel that this increment in the increase in your fame is good for your career , how exactly can I get some recompense?
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Re: Human-backed derivative

Post by Hexapuma »

My first thought is that this depends on how the courts view this in terms of responsibilities and obligations. If I have invested in you then you have a responsibility to maintain and actively service my investment. It could be argued that anything deleterious you do that could harm my investment should be forbidden by the courts. If you were to consider, for example, selling your house or purchasing a new car then I could demand that the court hold your assets to prevent you from taking an action that might hurt my investment.

Take the car example. It's an old saw that a car loses half its value when you drive it off the lot. So a court might agree that you are forbidden from buying any item with a high depreciation as that would negatively affect your net worth and thus the value of my investment.

What about grocery shopping? You're going to go out and spend $100 on a couple of weeks food and other items? Talk about devaluation! After a week or two that food is worth nothing. You're reducing my investment. All it takes is one investor to kick up a fuss and you could find yourself unable to spend any of your own money and yet still required to maximise your income. Go out and earn my money! Just don't do anything that might harm your health or reduce your life expectancy.

Honestly, you could do this easily, but you could only do it as a joke. If you tried to do this in any sort of serious way then the government would step in and stop you pretty quickly. If someone kicked up a fuss then you might be in trouble and it rather all feels like Slavery or Prostitution from an ethical standpoint.
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Re: Human-backed derivative

Post by DanielH »

I don’t think the idea is buying equity in a human; down that road lies slavery. If you think Tailsteak is going to buy a car, then you should not buy this product, but he is under no obligation to ensure it gains value. Other people have pointed out upthread that this causes a different problem, as he is more likely going to be willing to sell them if he plans to lose net worth soon (such as buying a car).

On the other hand, it could be useful still. In the US, college is expensive, but if you get the right major your expected earnings are higher. Some doubt has been raised here about the direction of this causal arrow, but for simplicity let’s say that college causes the higher earnings. In that case, if you cannot afford college, you could sell five- or ten-year versions of this. People would buy them because they expect your net worth to go up after college, and you would sell them because you need money now. It would be like a personal loan, but where you only pay if you do make money. More risky for the investor (and therefore would need to be priced so as to get higher expected returns), less risky for the investee.
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Re: Human-backed derivative

Post by Drachefly »

Hmm. In Star Control 2: The Ur-Quan Masters, this is how Druuge society works - the parents each get 10% stake in their offspring's future earnings. It is implied that similar stakes can be traded.
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Re: Human-backed derivative

Post by gaeila »

Well, in real-life, some people actually have NEGATIVE net worth, due to loan, debts, credit cards, etc.

One thing that's a wee bit like this HBD is some years ago, when Chris Baldwin was doing the web comic Bruno. He needed to borrow money to print some books (this was before Kickstarter; back in the 1/0 days, I believe.) He asked his readers if they would loan each loan him $100.00, and after one year, he would repay us $110.00 (interest rates were generally higher back then, too.) I was one of the supporters who loaned him $100.00. In return, I got a nice little hand printed card (still have it somewhere) that stated I had loaned him $100, and he would repay me $110 on (whatever the date was. This WAS years ago.)

Well, It all worked out for everyone. Chris raised enough to get his books printed; sold them all; made a profit, and paid back all his creditors--I assume. I know for a fact I got repaid the promised amount.
Yes, it was a gamble. What if the books didn't sell? What if something happened to Chris, like being hit by a truck? That actually does happen to some people...I happen to be one of them. :(

Essentially, all money IS a Human-backed derivative, if you think about it. It just spreads the risk over millions of people, instead of only one being.

Oh, and I don't know if any one's brought it up or not, but I'll mention it because it can be quite a thing to some folks. A very good reason for not having our currency completely backed by gold, is because there simply is not enough gold in the world (accessible) to sit in vaults and back the value of all the goods and services produced. And why should there be? Food has a value. Preparing food well has a value. Serving well-prepared food in a nice environment has a value. As long as everyone involved agrees (or mostly agrees) on the value of the little pieces of paper exchanged to acquire things of value, everything will work out. The only time you run into trouble is when something goes fundamentally wrong with the economy. For example, runaway inflation = awful situations like pre-WWII Germany, where the economy is essentially destroyed, and people are reduced to wheelbarrows full of (almost worthless) marks for a loaf of bread, or straight-up barter, which is really a big pain in whatever part of the anatomy you least prefer.

The U.S. economy isn't doing as well as it has in many past years, but it's not that hard to understand why. The deficit has grown enormously (mostly because we had a long, expensive, pointless war that turned previous years' surplus into enormous deficits.) A large deficit makes many people nervous, so they buy gold or other "hard" valuables instead of investing in the stock market (companies that make things.) Stock market slumps cause their own chain reactions. Essentially, if you think of the U.S. as a family that's a bit too close to maxing out its credit cards, doesn't have much in the way of savings, but is still making juuuust enough to pay the bills (at the moment anyway) that goes a long ways towards explaining stagflation and all that. Plus, the U.S. Federal Income Tax system has gone beyond ridiculous to Kafkaesque. (Economics really isn't all that hard. Try thinking of a country's situation as like a family's. It makes it easier to wrap your head around the fundamental things. Essentially, if a family's debt burden is too high compared to its income, things go right to hell. Same goes for a country.)

Anyway, the main reason a single Human-backed derivative is a bad idea is that it is relatively high risk. For both the human doing the backing, and the investors. If you really need me to explain further WHY it is so high-risk (sigh) I will, but please try to think it through first.

Or perhaps you like high-risk. Most humans are fundamentally risk-averse, but there are always exceptions.
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