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Wednesday, December 09, 2009

To Boldly Go Where No Socialist Has Gone Before

Chilean Bridge

The Bridge of the Chilean economy (H/T Quot'd).

Although some sources at the time said the Chilean economy was "run by computer," the project was in reality a bit of a joke, albeit a rather expensive one, and about the only thing about it that worked were the ordinary Western Union telex machines spread around the country. The two computers supposedly used to run the Chilean economy were IBM 360s (or machines on that order). These machines were no doubt very impressive to politicians and visionaries eager to use their technological might to control an economy (see picture at right.) Today, our perspective will perhaps be somewhat different when we realize that these behemoths were far less powerful than an iPhone. Run an economy with an iPhone? Sorry, there is no app for that.

Posted by Richard Anderson on December 9, 2009 | Permalink


i'd read about this before and chuckled. boy... there's so much to say i don't know where to start.

i suppose that, to point out the obvious, like church and state, economy and state should be separated to ensure efficiency and progress through natural markets.

central planners and utopianists love to try and fit square pegs into round holes.

Posted by: shel | 2009-12-10 7:18:27 PM

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