Ever wondered why computer games like Simcity and Cities Skylines will selfdestruct the towns if you raise taxes?
Here's a long read about the right wing economic theories that laid the foundation for Simcity when a logic was needed during its creation and then continues to influence game makers (and policy makers) today
(from Logic Magazine)
@ohyran did I wonder? It was hell trying to just get it up to 20%, and here I am happily paying 40%! Those sim-city simulated egoist citizens!!
@ohyran this always drives me NUTS in Cities Skylines
@ohyran I wonder how hard it would be to update Micropolis or Lincity-NG to remove such boneheaded assumptions.
in the game, you must build different structures (communes, markets, farms etc.) to provide the citizens with food, goods and jobs (or else pay them unemployment benefits). you can't control how much taxes they pay -- instead, you manage the resources they produce in order to maintain a proper balance.
it still assumes a roughly-capitalist idea of how the economy works, but within it, you can go anywhere from "libertarian laissez-faire republic" to "massively state-owned social democracy", with different consequences for each.
@ohyran well, there was his first problem:
Cities Skylines doesn't do this afaik
@Pyretta @popefucker @ohyran In SimCity 3000, the surest way to build a functioning city with a modicum of social programming is to invite big casinos and high-pollution deodorant factories into your city ASAP and put them on the outskirts of town where people don't notice them too much; they can essentially subsidize
@ohyran I always just figured it was because if you could just always raise the taxes the game would become too easy and they needed some way to regulate difficulty
@ohyran Having gone on a SimCity binge over the summer, I can say from experience that once you have a happy, well-balanced city, maxing out taxes has surprisingly little influence on approval or population.
@ohyran “I became a total Republican playing this game” Holy crap!
"This led [Forrester] to make the stark assertion that “the intuitive solutions to the problems of complex social systems” are “wrong most of the time.” In essence, anything we do to try to improve society will backfire and make things even worse."
"Forrester’s arguments enabled the Nixon Administration to claim that its plans to slash programs created to help the urban poor and people of color would actually, counterintuitively, help these people."
@ohyran This was fascinating. And reminds me that at last week's game night there was a discussion about how Monopoly was supposed to teach people how bad capitalism (or private land ownership) is, and the discussion turned to everyone 's anecdotes about how they would cheat or how they first learned that their older siblings were always cheating at the game, which, if you want a metaphor for capitalists exploiting the underprivileged..
@ohyran This is terrifying. Excellent find.
@ohyran this is my kind of article if I've ever seen one, shame it took a month to reach me!
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