Ye Olde Archives » Zork Asks

... about socks

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Please explain the operation of your sock markets. Why did you pick socks to be your medium of exchange? (We use marsmas, as I mentioned once before.) Is it really true that some people own billions of socks, while most on your planet own no socks at all? That doesn't seem right, or—just thinking about the drawer space—very practical, either.

You've really gotta tweak your radio frequencies up there, Zork. What you're hearing about are stock markets. We buy and sell shares—also called stock—in the ownership of our corporations. Now, you're going to ask, what's a corporation? The answer is, it's treated by law just like a human being, which is a way for the owners of the shares to avoid responsibility for anything the company does wrong—while reaping the profits from whatever it does right. And yes, some of us own huge amounts of stock, and most of us own none. Earth's leaders think that's a pretty good system. Works for them, anyway.

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