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Discussion in 'Too Hot for Swamp Gas' started by busigator96, Dec 19, 2013.
Has anyone seen this video?
If you don't want to watch videos.
FWIW, money and credit/debt seem highly useful in an exchange based economy. The paradox seems to be how do you create the material abundance required for such an economy without the producitve capacity & forces of capitalism, and all it entails?
FWIW, money and credit/debt seem highly useful in an exchange based economy. The paradox seems to be how do you create the material abundance required for a resource economy without the producitve capacity & forces of capitalism, and all it entails?
I think the answer is a Star Trek style replicator. Just makes things almost instantly upon demand.
You are partially correct....automation is the key. There would be a transition period of up to 100 years from capitalism to a RBE. There is a ton of information at thevenusproject.com about many of the aspects of such a society. This is not communism though. The research lab is actually located in Florida too.
It is quite the fascinating concept that if everyone shared instead of hoarding then the world would be a better place imagine that
It sounds a lot like communism. Who is to say how much resources one person is entitled to? If each person gets the same amount, how do you run a manufacturing company, for example? A factory uses a lot more resources than the sum of the individuals who work there normally require. And what's to stop people from believing that they are entitled to a mansion and a Ferrari? Capitalism is not perfect, but it takes one of the negative aspects of the human condition (greed) and focuses it into something that becomes a force for good. It also overcomes a natural tendency for humans to be lazy. People provide products and services and labor in exchange for things they need and want.
We see limited applications of this concept in cities that allow the free use of bicycles around the city. That's a good thing, generally speaking. I just can't see an entire society built on that concept. We do need smarter gov't that is better able to manage natural resources, something that the U.S. gov't is not that good at. Northern European governments do a decent job at this however, mostly because their education system is much better than ours, so they are much less likely to vote for empty suits in a popularity contest among candidates that compete to tell us what we want to hear.
Hoarding is a natural instinct. Some people want to be assured of the essentials of life in the future (food, clothing, shelter), and one way to do that is to save. To some, saving is hoarding. To others, it is insurance. My 3-year-old hoards toys. It's not something we taught her (actually, we're trying to break her of this). It seems to be instinctive.
The problem comes when you have people (usually uneducated) who waste natural resources. When you share natural resources with these people, they will only waste them at a higher rate. Everyone likes a bonfire on a special occasion. What happens when you have people that think Friday and Saturday are special occasions? You burn a lot of wood. Enough people do this and you start losing your forests (and increasing greenhouse gases).
The capitalist system tends to minimize waste. Uneducated people are less likely to be able to afford excessive natural resources. There are fewer wealthy people, so even if they are wasteful, they can only waste so much.
The real evolution in human society is going from a warfare-based competitive society to an economically-based competitive society. WWII is the last case of major world powers going directly after world domination through overt military means. But there have been less overt examples of using military means toward world domination: the USSR invaded Afghanistan in 1979 on their way to a warm-water port on the Indian Ocean. And we still have nations building their military. China is building aircraft carriers and stealth fighters, and Russia is re-building their military. Russia has recently claimed all of the oil in the Arctic Ocean, and appears to be willing to use their military to defend that claim. Half the nations in Africa have an AK-47 problem.
The battle for peace is the key to a successful future, and the U.S. has not always been all that supportive of the concept. We sometimes back the wrong horse to get access to natural resources (see: Shah of Iran). We sometimes ignore an ally that needs financial assistance (see: Afghanistan, 1989) and watch them become an enemy (see: Afghanistan, 2001). We sometimes arm "freedom fighters" without understanding how committed they are to freedom versus power grabbing (see: central America, 1980's).
We now should be living in a post-scarcity world. There is enough for everyone if there was a shift in mindset from competition to collaboration.
Well, both central planning and capital driven production have failed to make this happen. Here's a far-left perspective:
The available resources and existing technologies tell you what is available. Yes, there are systems in place (thanks to capitalism) where a global inventory can be taken and strategically distributed, but it has to make sense. The is no money.....no need to invade other countries for resources. This has to be a GLOBAL top down agreement between all nations. It will take time if we can be cooperative, or it can happen quickly in the wake of a potentential economic collapse. Think about why we pursue money....money is used for access to things to make our and family's lives better. To be honest, I had struggled with this concept too originally based on my background, but i kept researching about this topic. If there is enough technology in place already to feed, house, power everyone in the world, then the only thing holding us back is ourselves and the institutional beliefs of yesterday. Trust me, this is not communism...this is just using the scientific approach in order to help with social concern for people and intelligently use the planet that feeds us.
A quick video from the man who coined the term:
Here is another video spelling things out further:
I find this concept facinating and he actually offers a solution and not just complaining about the problems of today.
I would argue that all market economies are intrinsically resource based. For example, the more a resource is needed for producing goods and services, the more it will costs, with the caveat that in this case, cost is always based on availability.
This is kind of the point I raised with the Star Trek replicator. Unless you can make something instantly on demand, there is quite a bit of labor and time involved in production, from gathering resources to fashioning them into a thing. This is typically either undertaken because capital senses a profit opportunity or it is commanded on high to make a widget. Unless you eliminate this reality (by making the Star Trek replicator for instance), how does one coordinate production? And what motivates someone to do this?
Capitalism is one of the greatest creations of mankind.
I agree....However, it is now outmoded.
Capitalism is "outmoded"? Well, good for it -- it could be socialism and thus manifestly contrary to the entire human psychological and anthropological makeup and thus destined to never be in style.
This is all typical navel-gazing "if things were different they wouldn't be the same" fantasy. Ever since Marx and Engels first distilled their intellectual smeg unto paper, I'm sure the brain trust behind every fantasized or realized social revolution in their name has all come from the same basic premise -- "if we could just get our hands on the wheel we could steer this toward social perfection". And in the worst case scenarios like Russia, China, Cuba, they actually do get their hands on the wheels, and death and destitution follow as night follows day. Because the human creature doesn't bend that way, can't be authoritatively shaped to sublimate their immediate and tangible self-interests to remote and abstract collectivist ones.
In what way? And what replaces it?
I wouldn't go that far (I would say its music, writing or language, personally), but its the best way so far of allocating still scarce resources. The paradox being that capitalism profits from scarcity or barely meeting demand, rather than incentivizing excess production which would devalue a commodity.