So, we could solve most of our economic, social and environmental issues – if we just managed to fix the Root Bug. But is it feasible? Or yet another utopia? Surely not everyone is going to buy into it, as economics tends to be to politics what theology is to religion. And both politics and religion tend to be matters of conviction, where faith and loyalty to one’s group and ideology trump any logic, evidence or consequentialist considerations.

Fixing the Root Bug differs from many other drastic suggestions for solving our global issues in that it would not require a broader international consensus, as it would be a competitive option for any country (or currency area) to implement – making it game-theoretically very feasible for a first-mover. Provocatively, we’re claiming that a “root-debugged” economy would be more competitive over enterprise and investments than even a “laissez-faire economy” with free ownership of everything and no regulations (e.g. penalties for externalities). Simultaneously, it would remove the need for nations to try to indebt each other by any means (the “economy war“). It would hence almost force everyone else to follow suit (or resort to radical and expensive protectionist measures).

There are three major competitive advantages (compared to the status quo or a minarchy) provided by fixing the Root Bug:

  • The advantage of an extremely flexible and adaptable labor market (reduced recruiting risks and other labor costs, increased versatility of skills and mobility of employees etc.)
  • The advantage of reduced transaction taxation (and increased land use efficiency)
  • The advantage of a the possibility of negative interest rates (increasing competitiveness over productive capital by “ruining” competitiveness over risk-free, non-productive capital)

And finally (as explained in section 3.1 in Fixing the Root Bug), because wage levels are not controlled, they do the final adjustment of keeping regional competitiveness in balance. These competitive advantages are explained in more detail in section 3.5 of Fixing the Root Bug.