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The Lastrider problem of Economics

We are familiar with the Freerider problem of Economics: people who use a service without paying for it. The solution to the Freerider problem is Advertising-supported content for Freeriders: for example, Spotify or Radio.

What is lesser known, is the Lastrider problem of Economics! Suppose Tom is riding the subway train home. Every one on the train is also going home. Tom is the most patient man; he lets every one off the train before him ~ making sure no one is sleeping who may want to get off at this last stop.

That is, every passenger on the train has a degree of hurry or stress or anger, maybe 100%, maybe 50%, maybe 1%. But Tom has 0% anger, as he is used to being a lastrider.

When the transit staff at the station welcomes the arrivals, every passenger offends the STAFF ~ so that when it is Tom’s turn to be greeted: he gets scolded too.

This is the Lastrider problem of Economics.

Since a Game can be defined simply as {Offence, Defence} ~ I like to say, we are not in the [Game Of Thrones and Horses], but in the [Game Of Money and Ethics].

Coming back to the problem of the lastrider. The solution, stated in terms of Money is: Discounts. Just like there are Senior Discounts, Children Discounts, Armed-Forces Discounts ~ there ought to be Lastrider Discount. Last man off the ship, gets a 100% discount on today’s ride: a simple way to regulate (encourage) the conduct of Politeness.