Sunday, May 24, 2015

The M.A.D gun

In memory of John Nash, may I share with you my M.A.D. gun - something I have been thinking about a lot, even today before I learned of John Nash's death.
My ideas come not directly from him, but from Thomas Schelling - another economics game theory laureate, this time in the area of cold war nuclear deterrents . I was at his lecture in 2005: the same year that paradoxically the I.A.E.A. got the Nobel peace prize "for their efforts to prevent nuclear energy from being used for military purposes and to .."

The M.A.D. gun.
What if (just say) all firearms, all guns, had two barrels: one that shot your target - your adversary; and the other - at the same time - shot you. So, to use it, would mean you both die (or at least you die trying).  Question is, would it ever be used?  No, but you could argue: yes it would - to save the (your) group.

Well then, make a bigger gun - scale it up - so you get the group too. A cold war, nuclear stand off - as we still have (of sorts) today (even if we don't think about it).

So then, with that logic - and the near 70 years of no 'conventional' use of them, and the likes of Pakistan and India playing cricket and cooperating together again - why don't we, instead of cleaning up, riding the world of nuclear weapons, hand them out. Say 10 each (Middle East and all), with telephones to communicate.  

What would happen? Is it M.A.D, or is it peace.

 If you don't know what M.A.D. is ....google.

If you listen to part of Schelling's lecture, the last 5 minutes of it are most worth, at least for me.
http://www.nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/economic-sciences/laureates/2005/schelling-lecture.html

Fuck I love economics.

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