• untoreh-light

We live on the same rock (WLOTSR)

Or how to rationalize large businesses.

This is a concept that helps to reason about things that clash with standard notion of property rights, private vs public and sovereignty.

Effectively what a government is, can be defined to some degree, as a very large company with a peculiar method for hiring management[1].

[1] Workers are instead hired in a similar (although not identical) way as the private sector.
When business service a lot of users, the platformness of such business becomes a critical property that affects directly and indirectly a very large pool of people. But what is platformness?

As services grows, their platformity grows with them. Make no mistake, these properties are often times bad, and are to be considered liabilities.

When you put all these concepts together you probably end up more confused than before. Are very large business governments, or a governments very large businesses?

Of course, VLBs don't have the actual powers that a government has, but within their domains of agency there will be equivalents to legislation, enforcement and judgement, and yet they are managed like private businesses.


According to the "we live on the same rock" model of thinking, no business should grow to such extent that can exert control in ways that were not meant to be [2]. Such that small actions by a very small group of people, affect another disproportionately larger one.

[2] I know this is a simplification, but it is hard to put many concepts in few words.
There is a tipping point over which tail risks for "blow ups" become unbearable. Whenever there are humans in the loop, organizations can't scale past certain points. There are hard limits on what humans can do (capped vocabulary, close friends and distant connections, to name a few).

Despite the fact that we know our limits, we let organizations that we build, grow indefinitely in size. There is some tragic dissonance among this status quo that is hard to accept.

Maybe in the future, someone will understand that bigger is not better...at least when talking about how we structure our societies.

Post Tags: