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Futures Market

ecofem

Cyburbian
Messages
206
Points
9
Did anybody catch the national news last night or read the paper this morning about the Pentagon's proposal to set up a futures market for investors to bet on terrorist activites around the world?

WTF?
 

Wannaplan?

Bounty Hunter
Messages
3,214
Points
29
Wow, interesting news! Leave it to the bloodthirsty bureaucrats to combine work and play in the most interesting ways! I wonder if I will be able to catch the action on CNN at some sportsbook outfit along the Las Vegas strip? Maybe this will be the next season of Survivor on CBS: "Survivor: Gaza Strip." Oh, how I wish I had Jeff Probst's job! Reality TV rules!
 

Chet

Cyburbian Emeritus
Messages
10,623
Points
34
My god, thats horrible! Aside from the digusting social aspect of betting on future mayhem, think about the opportunities for manipulation!
 

ecofem

Cyburbian
Messages
206
Points
9
I wonder if they'll put a scenario in that they'll never capture Bin Laden or Saddam. That might be worth betting on.

I was pretty disgusted when I saw this on the news last night.
 

donk

Cyburbian
Messages
6,970
Points
30
I saw this on the news and found it so humourous I was going to post when i had time to find the link.

I'll take hell freezes over before there is peace in the middle east for 75 cents.

[edit] here is the link to the site where you can buy/trade the futures

http://www.policyanalysismarket.org/pam_home.htm [/edit]
 

Cardinal

Cyburbian
Messages
10,080
Points
34
This is disgusting. There is no "intelligence" that will be gathered by it. It is simply a form of betting on the most crass subjects. Think of it. Two years ago, if you had bet that the World Trade Center would be destroyed with thousands of people killed, you could be celebrating right now.
 

El Feo

Cyburbian
Messages
674
Points
19
Well, let me be the contrarian, then. I think that, weird as it sounds, it is a potentially creative way to expose, plan for, think through, and prepare responses for the terrorist attacks of the future. We want our leaders to be creative and agile in dealing with the increased threat that terrorism represents, but we're going to gut them for trying this? I'm serious - a couple of things I've read about this have brought me around to this way of thinking about it. Blogger Josh Chafetz has written:

"A futures market in terrorist attacks, while it sounds grisly, may help us to aggregate diffuse knowledge in a way that will prove superior to expert knowledge. It also may not, but it seems to me that it's worth a try. At the very least, if we're going to demand that the government get creative in fighting terror, we shouldn't be so quick to criticize when it does just that."
And an e-mailer to Instapundit points out:

"The story about the Pentgon's "terrorism market" clearly is an extension of Iowa Electronic Markets, which has been run for years by the University of Iowa's Tippett School of Business. Here's a link to the Iowa Information Market's web site:

Link

In brief, the IEM lets persons place bets on the likelihood of given events' happening; for example, people could bet on the likelihood that Saddam Hussein will survive this year, or who will win the next presidential election. The collective expertise of the participants has proven to be extremely useful in predicting events.

The notion that the dim-bulbs in Congress and the media should attack such a useful and proven idea as the Pentagon's is utterly absurd."
I'm kind of on board with at least giving this a try...
 

Jen

Cyburbian
Messages
1,704
Points
26
Wake up George!!!!

This is sheer madness sure to cause a global quagmire.

BUt then again if we all put our money down on the same one spot we could then ensure its extirpation?

Who is the brainchild/defective genius who thought this up?
 

SGB

Cyburbian
Messages
3,388
Points
26
Not gonna happen. Wouldn't be prudent.

The Associated Press
Tuesday, July 29, 2003; 11:24 AM


WASHINGTON - The Pentagon's plan to establish a futures market to predict terrorist acts will be abandoned, Senate Armed Services Committee chairman says.
 

El Feo

Cyburbian
Messages
674
Points
19
PlannerGirl said:
thats just sick

thank god someone got some guts and stoped it.
I know I'm all alone here, but I still say that it's a mistake not to try this.

Hope that doesn't make me sick.
 

Chet

Cyburbian Emeritus
Messages
10,623
Points
34
But the ability to manipulate the market is madness in iteself.

Imagine a future on the liklihood that a high speed train will derail in Berlin as a result of terrorism. Dr. Evil places a one BILLION dollar investment that it WILL happen, then spends a measly $100,000 in the equipment and training to make it happen. Success. Lives are lost. Profit is achieved.
 

Jeff

Cyburbian
Messages
4,161
Points
27
Someone at the water cooler was just telling me about this, and I came here to post it but was beat to it. That is the most ridiculous thing I have ever heard of. I cannot see wasting tax dollars on the salaries of the bozos that thought up this plan. I think its time for a career change.
 

Wannaplan?

Bounty Hunter
Messages
3,214
Points
29
El Feo said:
I'm kind of on board with at least giving this a try...
I agree - and I'm being serious. Though my post from earlier was cynical, I do hope to have the opportunity in the near future to go to Las Vegas and place my bets. Or at least wire transfer my funds to the Pentagon Casino and watch it at home on my my satellite feed. CNN and FOX ain't seen nuthin' yet!
 

El Feo

Cyburbian
Messages
674
Points
19
Chet said:
But the ability to manipulate the market is madness in iteself.

Imagine a future on the liklihood that a high speed train will derail in Berlin as a result of terrorism. Dr. Evil places a one BILLION dollar investment that it WILL happen, then spends a measly $100,000 in the equipment and training to make it happen. Success. Lives are lost. Profit is achieved.
C, I think you're making some pretty bold assumptions about how it would be organized and policed. Conceptually I think this is valuable, but I will concede it would depend entirely on how it was organized, secured and run, etc.
 
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El Feo

Cyburbian
Messages
674
Points
19
Alan said:
I agree - and I'm being serious. Though my post from earlier was cynical, I do hope to have the opportunity in the near future to go to Las Vegas and place my bets. Or at least wire transfer my funds to the Pentagon Casino and watch it at home on my my satellite feed. CNN and FOX ain't seen nuthin' yet!
Hmm. I must have missed the part of the plan that called for allowing it to be a Vegas-style free-for-all.
 

The Irish One

Member
Messages
2,267
Points
25
Two years ago, if you had bet that the World Trade Center would be destroyed with thousands of people killed, you could be celebrating right now.
Exactly Mike! This is unprofessional to say the least and if this is all the Pentagon can do as far as creativity then kick the hacks out on their asses and get some real innovative thinkers in there. Somebody has got to be in deep shit with the Joint Chiefs/ Executive branch.

"The foundation is integrity, fortified by a commitment to the service of our country, and fueled by a drive in excellence in all that we do."
 

El Feo

Cyburbian
Messages
674
Points
19
Michael Stumpf said:
Two years ago, if you had bet that the World Trade Center would be destroyed with thousands of people killed, you could be celebrating right now.
Or alternatively, Mike, if enough people "bet" this was a "winner," the threat would have been taken seriously, intelligence dots might have been connected, and the whole freakin' mess could have been avoided.

Also, I'd say that kicking folks out on their asses because their "creativity" isn't considered appropriate is something the Pentagon is already quite good at.
 

Chet

Cyburbian Emeritus
Messages
10,623
Points
34
El Feo said:
Conceptuallty I think this is valuable, but I will concede it would depend entirely on how it was organized, secured and run, etc.
Oh yes, lets let THE GOVERNMENT decide what to put on the market. Why on earth should The Man be trusted to decide such things?! Adam Smith is turning in his grave.
 

El Feo

Cyburbian
Messages
674
Points
19
Chet said:
Oh yes, lets let THE GOVERNMENT decide what to put on the market. Why on earth should The Man be trusted to decide such things?! Adam Smith is turning in his grave.
The participants would provide and present scenarios, events, etc. to the rest of the, er, "investors", not The Man, contrary to some incomplete stories. Adam Smith might just be pleased that TWON might be useful in predicting and preventing mayhem, and not just extolling capitalism.
 

The Irish One

Member
Messages
2,267
Points
25
Oh yes, lets let THE GOVERNMENT decide what to put on the market. Why on earth should The Man be trusted to decide such things?! Adam Smith is turning in his grave.
LOL

Also, I'd say that kicking folks out on their asses because their "creativity" isn't considered appropriate is something the Pentagon is already quite good at.
True
 

JNA

Cyburbian Plus
Messages
25,792
Points
61
going down this slippery slope
next trying this novel approach will be local govt
betting on crashes in select intersections
 

El Feo

Cyburbian
Messages
674
Points
19
JNA said:
going down this slippery slope
next trying this novel approach will be local govt
betting on crashes in select intersections
Love the freeform poetry! ;)
 

Duke Of Dystopia

Cyburbian
Messages
2,713
Points
24
Scenarios like this have also been run on a smaller scale at archeology digs. Putting the findings or an issue up for discussion and letting amateurs list possible reasons for events or methods. It has been successful.

I am with El Feo. It could certainly go a long way to pointing out vulnerabilities if nothing else. Being familiar with our own culture, we are in the best position to aid in identifying weakness if given the opportunity.

By doing this, we can stay ahead of the terrorists without squashing our way of life or liberties.

Terrorists are STUPID. If they new our culture well, they would see a hundreds of holes in how to attack us, and they could do it with less than 3 to 4 years of planning and tens of thousands of dollars. More like 7 days, and 2k per mission.

But the concept of "lets stick our heads in the sand and act like the threat does not exist" is equally as stupid. Why should we let just the "Suits & Camo" types tell us what to watch for. We should be adding to their issues to identify and fix rather than waiting like passive little sheep!

If you think it is cruel and horrific, fine, but then you will bitch when the next big attack comes cause the "Suits & Camo" types didn't stop them cause they were not creative enough. We have 287 million creative minds that should be helping and not waiting like a bunch of shiftless losers. But that would be mean and threatening to the rest of the world I suppose.

SCREW EM!

The world is a dangerous, nasty beast, always has been, and always will be. Whether you want it to be or not.
 

Cardinal

Cyburbian
Messages
10,080
Points
34
El Feo said:
Or alternatively, Mike, if enough people "bet" this was a "winner," the threat would have been taken seriously, intelligence dots might have been connected, and the whole freakin' mess could have been avoided.
No, I can't buy into that logic. If so many people knew it was going to happen, as demonstrated by their betting it would happen, then the terrorists would not have been keeping it very secret in the first place.
 

BKM

Cyburbian
Messages
6,463
Points
29
I agree. How in the heck could they set this up to avoid manipulation. Heck, I could see it now. Al Qaeda manipulates the system and from their "winnings" gets some of the cash to do their next "project."

There is thinking outside the box, then there is just wacky ideas. Why don't we use the all-seeing, all-knowing eyes of the space aliens to predict the next attacks.
 

El Feo

Cyburbian
Messages
674
Points
19
Michael Stumpf said:
No, I can't buy into that logic. If so many people knew it was going to happen, as demonstrated by their betting it would happen, then the terrorists would not have been keeping it very secret in the first place.
Mike, that's a non sequitur - betting wouldn't demonstrate that people "knew it was going to happen", it would demonstrate how they viewed a proposed event's relative plausibility. As a result, they would "bet" on it's relative likelihood given their own independent research (just like "real" investors in the "real" market), and therefore raise it up on the vulnerability/likelihood scale. This futures market would exist independently of both secrets and loose lips.

BKM, it's worked to predict future events with an astonishing degree of success in other realms, not too far removed from counterterrorism and military policy. You think they came up with this out of the blue? They didn't. They just proposed it as one alternative method of assessing vulnerabilities and helping to establish priorities. Clearly, this shouldn't be our only way of assessing threats, but I think to dismiss it out of hand is a huge, shortsighted, knee-jerk mistake.
 

Maroon

Cyburbian
Messages
45
Points
2
BKM said:
I agree. How in the heck could they set this up to avoid manipulation. Heck, I could see it now. Al Qaeda manipulates the system and from their "winnings" gets some of the cash to do their next "project."
Actually, I think this is a great idea, because of the possibility suggested above.

If terrorists thought that any particular attack were likely, based on their plans, it would register in the market that the probability of a given attack was extremely high or becoming more likely.

Unfortunately, terrorists are smart enough to figure this out are unlikely to participate in a market that could tip their hands.

I recommend that people check out the Iowa project referenced in a previous post, and second El Feo's comments.
 

The Irish One

Member
Messages
2,267
Points
25
Maybe the civilian marketeer's will start things up and will test how it works. It could be a penny stocks type of thing -let the market do its thing and grow on its own.

Does anyone have stats on how many Saudi Arabian's are in Flight training for ETOPS and IFAT. My top five picks for crashing a plane into a Symbolic structure are The Capitol building, Statue of Liberty, Sears Tower, CIA,, Washington monument and in a seperate category any Nuclear power plant in Illinois/ New York.

I do suspect a Left coast attack on the TransAmerica building, Golden Gate, or the Tallest Building on the West coast (it's in LA). The Seattle Space needle and The Los Angeles airport bombing failed, so there should be something in the works.

Speculating on:
All of the Fertilizer that was stolen in Texas(??) the other day
Federal airport security uniforms stolen
Recent Al Qaida admissions to planned hijackings.


This is the idea, right?
 

Jen

Cyburbian
Messages
1,704
Points
26
Send it back rework it and repitch it

DoD this is true
Terrorists are STUPID. If they new our culture well, they would see a hundreds of holes in how to attack us, and they could do it with less than 3 to 4 years of planning and tens of thousands of dollars. More like 7 days, and 2k per mission.
Exactlly there are hundreds of attack opportunities or holes, if anyone would ask me I'd give em my top ten scenarios.

But a futures market? How would the individual or municipal holding(shadow gov't)collect without uncomfortable scrutinization. We are saying payoffs for completed events and not intercepted closecalls. Let the cia moles drop acid if it helps their insight but Dollars for Deaths?
 

Chet

Cyburbian Emeritus
Messages
10,623
Points
34
Re: Send it back rework it and repitch it

Jen said:
DoD this is true Exactlly there are hundreds of attack opportunities or holes, if anyone would ask me I'd give em my top ten scenarios
Exactly. This is why I'm going to be taking the Foreign Service Exam .

If the right opportunity comes along, this would ROCK!
 

El Feo

Cyburbian
Messages
674
Points
19
Re: Re: Send it back rework it and repitch it

Chet said:
Exactly. This is why I'm going to be taking the Foreign Service Exam .

If the right opportunity comes along, this would ROCK!
Chet, best of luck. Took it twice myself and went to the Assessment Center portion both times, but never made it past that. Marriage has now postponed that career path until sometime around, oh, I dunno, retirement.

But keep in mind that entry level in the diplomatic corps doesn't pay much at all, and all the attention that the seniors will pay to a G7s opinion doesn't amount to much either.
 

Chet

Cyburbian Emeritus
Messages
10,623
Points
34
Re: Re: Re: Send it back rework it and repitch it

El Feo said:
But keep in mind that entry level in the diplomatic corps doesn't pay much at all, and all the attention that the seniors will pay to a G7s opinion doesn't amount to much either.
I figure I wont get past the assessment either. :(

With free housing and some of the other nontaxable benefits, I could take a 35% pay cut and be level.
 

Duke Of Dystopia

Cyburbian
Messages
2,713
Points
24
Re: Send it back rework it and repitch it

Jen said:
DoD But a futures market? How would the individual or municipal holding(shadow gov't)collect without uncomfortable scrutinization. We are saying payoffs for completed events and not intercepted closecalls. Let the cia moles drop acid if it helps their insight but Dollars for Deaths?
It was stated that no more than $100 could be placed on any single event. Probably limiting the total take from any successful event.

As a semi-geek war and d20 gammer, I have seen how inventive the human mind can be in getting around the fixed nature of defenses :) Aplied in the real world, the futures wagers could be used to plug holes in our defenses, help to identify time frames, and inject NEW ideas into the old scenarios of the professionals.

Investing in defense company stocks are betting on death. Investing in auto companies and thier parts manufacture is betting on death.

And now, they want to punish DARPA for putting out a good idea ahead of its time. They initially did the research and mock up/connection of the internet. They spawned a whole industry and many tens of amazing products in the advanced technology stage. And now they will be punished by the PC crowd for not being slugish and non-inovative.

Wonderful
 

The Irish One

Member
Messages
2,267
Points
25
Marriage has now postponed that career path until sometime around, oh, I dunno, retirement.
You've got until your 59. What a great career that would be.

As far as the Terrorism futures market is concerned -If it's as innovative as some say (and I admit there is real potential with this practice) then what is to stop the FREE MARKET from doing it? Why does the military or its subcontractors have to be responsible. If this things going to work well it seems like we would want it as far from the government as possible. Government/ military emloyees should be allowed to invest.
 

Duke Of Dystopia

Cyburbian
Messages
2,713
Points
24
The Irish one said:


(and I admit there is real potential with this practice) then what is to stop the FREE MARKET from doing it?

Government/ military emloyees should be allowed to invest.
It may happen now that it has had a large exposure. Another oportunity for Vegas or Wall street has opened with lots of free advertising.

Allowing Gov & Mil employees to bett allows for insider type trading to be factored into any accurate prediction model at any given time.

The military and gov should be tied to the market in order to take full advantage of any oportunity to exploit informational mining / action / reaction.
 
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