Sunday, November 17, 2013

On Death Star Economics

(via Violins & Starships)

The whole article is an amusing - if ultimately pointless - exercise in trying to apply real-world economics to the fantasy world that oozed out of George Lucas's pointy head, but I think the final analysis is the most accurate to the Lucasverse:
This also dovetails with the idea of the Empire’s economy not being all that sophisticated – being heavily based on mercantilism and guilds, very protectionist, and not really making the most of its very advanced technology or huge diversity of member planets.

However, it begs the question: can a very advanced technology develop out of an economy based on mercantilism and guilds?

I'm inclined to say no, simply because those sorts of systems are too stifling of the innovation and competition that make advanced technology possible. If you're spending most of your resources guarding your market and locking in your labor forces, you'll lose out in the long run to organizational systems that are more nimble in both gathering and distributing resources.

That is, all things being equal, Wal-Mart beats the East India Company.

But really, the whole thing boils down to how low the barriers to entry for start-up concerns is. If the Empire is light-handed regarding taxes, licensing, and filing fees, you'll likely find more Coruscants in the galaxy and fewer backwards rat-holes like Tattooine.

1 comment:

  1. We also need to get Jar-Jar Binks out of the White House.