Thursday, June 17, 2010

Repulsor Technology for All

Tony Stark explains his plans for world domination.  I mean, world peaceInvincible Iron Man #27 by Matt Fraction and Salvador Larroca, Marvel Comics (2010)

After a year of running from Norman Osborn while having his memory banks slowly exterminated, Tony Stark has been "rebooted." Now with Osborn gone and his mind restored, it's to rebuild Stark Industries. Only Tony no longer wants to focus on weapons manufacturing and distribution.

Instead, he is starting a new enterprise, Stark Resilient, which promises a business model focused on fostering international cooperation and ushering in an era of world peace. How does he arrive at this goal? Simple. By providing the world with an alternative energy source, his patented repulsor technology, Tony hopes to one eliminate Earth's dependence on fossil fuels.

A pretty decent plan. After all, as we discussed in an earlier post on alien technology and economic growth, the best way towards economic growth is the free and unfettered dissemination of information and technology. In this sense, Stark was doing a great disservice to the world by keeping this technology for himself. He could have powered more cars, produced more electricity, heated more homes, etc.

And yet we know exactly why he kept it secret, don't we? He was afraid that this technology would fall into the wrong hands, which would ultimately cause more harm than good. Hell, this is the entire premise of Iron Man 2. It's also what caused the Plutonian to go berserk in Mark Waid's Irredeemable.

Now he's come around. Whether this will have the intended consequences remains to be seen. Let's just hope more Russians don't start attacking speed racers.


17 comments:

Anonymous said...

So, what does the price of oil fall to in a repulsor powered world?

What does that mean for the economies of Mexico, Russia and Saudi Arabia?

Long term peace, maybe? Short term chaos? Definitely?

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David Johnston said...

I always kind of assumed that technologies like repulsors required unobtaniums like vibranium or room temperature superconductors to manufacture which is why only billionaires and the militaries of the wealthiest nations could afford them. After all, it's not as if Tony Stark's efforts to keep other people from copying his technology have been 100% successful

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RJ Moore II said...

In the long run, there's more profit in useful (power) than destructive (weapons) applications for new technology; free reign and free trade are the way to go. Sure, some people might make guns; but if you're rich enough you just make bigger ones. With shields. Made of Vibranium.

This also drives the price of oil WAY down, which means oil gets used for lubricants and plastics more; combine that with the new cheap power and we've suddenly got a lot of viable new polymers.

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