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[liberationtech] [cpsr-activists] CPSR Curriculum?

Yosem Companys ycompanys at gmail.com
Fri Feb 1 11:02:10 PST 2019


My comments inline below in blue...

On Fri, Feb 1, 2019 at 10:49 AM Richard Brooks <rrb at g.clemson.edu> wrote:

> Reminds me of a proposal I wrote for an ethics course to NSF.
> My proposed course looked at the economics of the industry, as
> pointed out by Ross Anderson, that the market rewards bad
> and insecure software. This means that structurally it is
> almost impossible to be ethical and survive. The course included
> finding regulatory and market modifications that would support
> producing secure systems and economic survival.
>
> I find something wrong with a system that supports making
> insecure products.
>
> My course proposal was turned down. My favorite review
> of the proposal said it is wrong to combine ethics and
> economics.
>

That was the question Oliver Williamson asked before his being awarded the
Nobel Prize in Economics.

Research by Dale Miller
<https://www.gsb.stanford.edu/faculty-research/faculty/dale-t-miller> and
others shows that students who take economics courses in college become
more selfish and less altruistic after taking the course.

My Harvard advisor Jeffrey Sachs once told me the story about how the
President of the University of Chicago -- then an economist -- heard Jeff
go on and on about the importance of technologies to what was then called
"developing economies." When Jeff was done, the President turned to him and
said, "Jeff, you know that there's no such thing as technology because we
haven't modeled it mathematically yet."

When I came to Stanford and turned to the natural and behavioral sciences,
one of my professors would introduce me at parties as a "recovering
economist," which I always found amusing.


> We should teach them to do the ethical thing, especially
> when it means that they will go bankrupt.
>
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