Economy Notes

This story occurs in a post-scarcity world, with near-perfect healthcare. This means the normal economies we are used to don’t work: No one needs to work to get food, shelter, or clothing. And most of the population don’t, or at least don’t work hard.

The system they use is fairly simple: Every person is given a daily energy/resource ration, in the form of money. (Which means the currency isn’t a fiat currency; it has a direct basis in those terms, although the conversion rate is a bit fluid depending on the current production levels and population.) If they spread that money equally between food, housing, and clothing, they can have decent (if basic) food, comfortable (if uninteresting) clothing, and decent (if slightly cramped) housing. If they want better in any one, they can skimp on the others, or they can find a way to generate (directly or indirectly) energy or resources. How they do that is up to them.

This then leads to what’s basically a second-level economy: People have jobs, money, buy things, sell things, etc., but none of it is necessary. They do it either to fill the time or to be able to afford to enjoy things they wouldn’t be able to get on the ration: Larger houses, better food, more fashionable clothing, etc.

But regardless of whether they work or not, they get the daily ration, and can spend it however they want. Prices are actually lower for most items, but then so are ‘wages’: Your job isn’t supposed to support you, it’s just supposed to give you luxuries. There is no inherent social stigma in living off of the ration. (Though it might be present in some social circles.)

The population is also stable and regulated, so one of those luxuries is a license to raise a kid. The exact price will vary, depending on how many deaths there have been recently. (Deaths by old age are nearly impossible, as are most deaths by illness. The main causes of deaths are accident or malice.) It’s usually expensive, but demand plays a role, and keeps it from becoming completely unafordable.

One side-effect of all of this is being able to provide an ‘interesting’ experience, of any form, means you will be able to command a high price. Talib is rich because provides a variety of unusual and interesting experiences.

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