Autarky

Autarky or self-sufficiency [not to be confused with autocracy] is in economics the situation in which a country is independent of the importation of foreign goods. In the past several groups have aimed to achieve autarky. The primary reason for doing so is to reinforce national sovereignty. The less one depends on the supply of others, the less vulnerable one is for outside pressure. Continue reading Autarky

Civil defense force

In a space habitat all kind of disasters can occur. These unfortunate events could be small or big, but in all instances an adequate response is required to save lives and to protect health. In order to handle such situations properly, an organization is necessary and therefore we propose the establishment of civil defense forces in each space settlement. Continue reading Civil defense force

The Association of Lagrangian Nations

When multiple sovereign communities will be established at the 4th or 5th Sun-Earth Lagrange points (SEL), there will be a need for an intergovernmental platform. The leaders of the several Space Settlements will regularly meet to discuss their common interests and to settle their own disputes.

We propose the establishment of the Association of Lagrangian Nations (ALN). This organization will not be a military alliance, nor will it be a free-trade area. Rather it will be the Lagrangian alternative for the united nations, but with several key differences. Continue reading The Association of Lagrangian Nations

The Mordan Talent

For our and your convenience, we have decided to propose the Talent (proposed currency code: RMT) as the national currency of the Humanist Republic of Mordan. On this we have discussed monetary issues, but we never went so far as to give the currency a name. We have noticed that this has led to uneasy situations when we wrote about topics involving monetary examples.

One Mordan Talent will be subdivided into thousand Sestertii (singular: Sestertius). Though most transactions in Mordan [or in other space settlements] will involve electronic payments (such as debit cards, internet banking and stored value cards), coins and notes will still be used. Our proposal is to have coins of 1, 2, 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200 and 500 Sestertii and of 1, 2 and 5 Talents; further they will be notes of 10, 20 and 50 Talents.

See here of the proposed currency sign.

Flag states

Under international law all countries are entitled to maintain a maritime fleet. This includes landlocked countries, i.e. countries without a coast line. Therefore it is possible to register an ocean-going vessel in, for instance, Switzerland. Obviously such ships depend completely on foreign ports.

There is no reason that Space Settlements wouldn’t be allowed to maintain a maritime fleet. Theoretically it would be entirely legal for Space Settlements to open a ship register for terrestrial ships. However, space settlements serving as flag states could be a potential source of controversy. Continue reading Flag states

Financial Services Act (outline proposal)

Full title: “Federal Financial Services Act of JD 2464388.5”

Short title: “Financial Services Act (2035)”

Outline contents:

Book 1 General provisions

Book 2 The Authority for the Financial Markets

Book 3 Banking

-Title 1 General provisions

-Title 2 Consumer and Investment banks

-Title 3 miscellaneous

Book 4 Credit

-Title 1 On the types of credit and monetary loans

-Title 2 Credit Unions

-Title 3 Peer-to-peer lending services

-Title 4 Pawn brokers

Book 5 Insurance services

-Title 1 General provisions

-Title 2 Insurance companies

-Title 3 Insurance markets

-Title 4 Types of insurances

-Title 5 Reinsurance

-Title 6 Miscellaneous

Book 6 Securities

Book 7 Derivatives

-Title 1 General provisions

-Title 2 Trading in derivatives

Book 8 Financial intermediaries

Book 9 Asset management and mutual funds

Book 10 Currency trade

Explanation:

The general purpose of this act is to regulate financial markets. Though financial markets have faced severe criticism, and to a largely extent this had been justified, they are an essential part of a modern economy. Nevertheless financial markets need strict regulation in order to prevent them from becoming a parasitic sector of society. Regulation of the financial markets aims at furthering public interests.

The general provision sections primarily contain definitions. Before one could regulate banks, insurance companies, stock trading and so on, one needs to define these terms before hand.

This act does not deal with accountants. They are not a part of the financial industry, and will be subject of another act.

Ad book 2: The Authority for the Financial Markets (AFM) is the governmental agency charged with the enforcement of this act. For its job the AFM has the power to impose fines, to revoke licenses, and to arrest people for violation of this act. Its activities are partially funded by the revenues generated by the Federal Financial Transactions Tax (FTT).

Ad book 3, 5 and 6: On of the basic principles of the law on banking and on insurance: is the strict separation between banking and insurance, and the strict separation between consumer and investments banks. Another basic principle is that consumer banks and insurance companies should be consumer cooperatives. See also here.

Ad book 6 and 7: Securities and derivatives are two separate financial instruments, hence both require a separate treatment. Securities include shares and bonds, and entail direct investment in businesses. Derivatives include a variety of instruments such as options and futures. They are invented to manage risks, but are mostly used for a type of gambling.

Ad book 8: This book deals with persons who make it their profession to sell financial products of third parties to consumers. The main principle of the law on intermediaries is the prohibition of commission. Since intermediaries have to serve their consumers, they should be paid by their consumers and not by the companies whose products they sell.

However, it does not deal with real estate brokers. They are covered by another act.

Ad book 10: The provisions of this book are aimed at controlling speculative currency trading and protecting the economy against large-scale speculation.

money

Temporary housing: a suggestion

When the first space habitats are constructed, the furnishing of the interior will start. Trees need to be planted and many buildings have to be built. Houses, offices, hospitals, schools and so on have to be constructed. It might take a decade or more before all these building will be finished. The construction of buildings with a public function will have a priority.

Hence we should consider temporary shelters till the time permanent establishments have been arranged. One idea could be to house the first settlers in “army” tents. Though they could be established quickly and at low costs, their appearance will be too provisional. Further tents are also quite vulnerable.

A better option, in our opinion, is the use of quonset huts, prefabricated structures of galvanized steel designed to establish temporary shelters in short time. Quonset huts were developed during the second world war by the US military. After the war they also proved to be useful for civilian purposes.

Quonset huts are quite durable, and could be used for decades. Therefore the are preferable to tents. Because they are intended for temporary use, they will dismantled when permanent buildings will be available. Thereafter the huts could be reused at other locations.

250px-Quonset

Quonset huts in the US, 1946

Interior including human powered airplane

The interior of a Bernal Sphere

Note on spammers

Recently there has been an increase in attempts to post spam “comments” on this site by using the contact forms on our Contact and FAQ pages.

This is actually quite surprisingly because messages submitted through those forms will not be published, unlike comments. Comments spammers usually seek to generate traffic to their own websites or those of their associates and hence need their spam comments to be public [comment spammers are not interest in the site-owner but in his visitors].

The contact forms are meant for people to contact us privately, and hence are not published on this site. Therefore it is pointless for spammers to submit their “comments” through those forms. We will not reply to such spam reactions and they are deleted at first instance.