What can we learn from the Internet?

Internet pioneer Danny Hills has a TED talk about the early days of the Internet. On that talk we see that the Internet, on its early days, was essentially an obscure network based on trust.

Today, the Internet is much bigger, and much more important. Despite its massive importance, governments and corporations are constantly on the lookout for opportunities to mess with it, reducing its usefulness for their own profit and power gain. They get away with this because it is technically feasible to do so, and it is in the reach of their power.

The technical reasons behind this vulnerability are not particularly interesting for this post. The interesting part are the responses the Internet community is deploying to this perceived threat of control. These responses seem to fall into the following three categories:

The first kind of response is to fight in the political space to keep the Internet open. This essentially means that, as members of our societies, we get together and complain to those in power and to each other until they change their minds. This has stopped the progress of bad laws such as “SOPA” and “PIPA” in the U.S. We will call this approach “begging.”

The second kind of response is to start designing an alternative to the Internet that would not be controllable. Designing theoretical alternatives, or prototyping these designs, is not really too difficult. The harder part is seeing how these alternatives would grow beyond isolated localities adopting them and into a global mesh that would, eventually, be easily accessible by anyone, like the current Internet. We will call this approach “forking.” Not really “forking,” as these networks would probably end up talking to each other, but it has to be conceived as to stand on its own, as if it were a fork.

The third kind of response is to build a network that’s better than the Internet in some sense, but on “top” of the Internet, that is, an application using the Internet, as opposed to beside it, as a “physical network” like the Internet. That’s what the “peer-to-peer networks” do. They are not “networks” in the same sense that the Internet is a “network.” In academia, you would say that these peer-to-peer systems, such as BitTorrent, FreeNet, Napster, Bitcoin or GNUNet, are “logical networks” or “overlay networks.” They are networks “overlaid” (built on top of) an existing “physical” network such as the Internet. We will call this approach the “overlay” approach (sounds simpler than “if you can’t beat them, add a layer on top of them that makes it do what you want.”)

So, in the case of transforming the system known as the Internet, what is the correct approach? The answer is, of course, all of them. When a system is as important as the Internet, then it is not a matter of “which is the right way,” but which is the right way for you. All of them are valid, and we’re going with whatever works.

I have a hunch that these paths can be translated to the paths we have available to transforming “The Economy” into a “Resource-Based Economy” or “Love Economy” or “Gift Economy” or whatever it is that we would call it. That problem is, similarly, very important and worthy of all kinds of response we can come up with.

We have many people enacting the first response, of “begging” the current governments and corporations to do things differently.

The second response, of “forking” the current systems, is similarly receiving lots of attention. Simple and small-scale designs, such as designs for specific villages or communities, have been working for decades. Some communities even cut economic ties with the rest of the human world, essentially creating a private “world” where they can claim to exercise a “world-wide” and pure resource-based economy — but you still have to at least negotiate land ownership with some existing country, last time I checked. Larger-scale designs, on the other hand, if not deployed, at least are the focus of much discussion and study.

The third path, I think, is where we would start making some interesting progress.

Consider the following: given any criteria for allocation of the existing money tokens in circulation, which one of the following two entities would be more likely to be capable of capturing more of it?

The first entity is a group of people who each live on their own apartment, and drives each day, on their own car, to the same job site where they work. When these people meet, they pay each other for things, and every transaction is taxed by the local government.

The second entity is the same group of people, but now using a gift economy of some sort between them. They not only share things, being more physically efficient, but they also avoid having their internal economy be implemented using taxed government tokens. Whatever government money they hold in total, it disappears slower from each individual’s bank account simply because they are not taxed for circulating it internally.

Yes, money is a fiction, a convention. But so is any economic game. Even if you have a global network of computer processes monitoring all world’s resources, the representation of these resources is still a model, still a game, still a fiction. An error in modelling of the world’s resources would produce sub-optimal allocation, much like the current government money systems produce sub-optimal allocation. A much better model is still a model.

What this means is, instead of abolishing the fiction of money, why not just satisfy it? Get together with some people, and agree to collectively play the game better than those who won’t build their own gift economies and who will live physically inefficiently. Then just watch the cash pile grow. The government will have no rule it can design to not reward the people who actually want to build something different. And the more “money” you have… well, let’s just say that, in the current system, having money is not exactly a bad thing. Want to build Jacque Fresco’s futuristic town? Amassing a few hundred billion dollars couldn’t hurt. It is all fiction anyway. Gather the fiction, then give it to people who still want it. These people will give you access to the land you need to build a town, as well as deliver all the resources, material and mental, that you need to build it for the first time. Since it is a sustainable town, once it is built, you have one place that doesn’t need money.

The “overlay” path is not without its own difficult challenges, however. When you design an overlay, be it for the Internet or for the human environment sharing problem, you have to keep two worlds in your head instead of one, and constantly remember which kind of thinking goes where. If you are not careful while designing your peer-to-peer system, you may end up recreating its supporting layer without intending to. Having money may cause us to exclusively “buy” our way into simply surviving on the fruits of the global unsustainable production machine, instead of taking whatever first step, even if small and feeble, towards freeing ourselves from depending on these unsustainable (destructive and violent, really) systems. I can “have” a million “dollars,” but that shouldn’t stop me from personally spending part of my day trying to grow some tomatoes.

Final note. Becoming a billionaire solving practical problems and then donating it to charities that also solve practical problems, or funding start-ups that want to “innovate,” is not what I’m talking about here. That’s simply trying to do good within the current economic and financial system, and validating and reinforcing it in the short term. This would be simply using the existing network as it is presented, not using it in a way that makes it emulate what a competing network would be. It is certainly possible that this alone — a “correct” application of business as usual — may bring about sufficient “real” transformation that problems disappear on their own through sheer business, technological and scientific ingenuity. That is, the beautiful communities based on trust and gifting that we envision are actually just around the corner — if only we would let the great Capitalist dance finish its performance on this planet, then we would see how wonderful things could and will be. Then again, it is also possible that trying to grow a new system as a mere “product” of the diligent application of the current system will continue to not work.

Original Post : thinking.nfshost.com/wiki/index.php?n=Main.OnResourceBasedEconomies


A Conversation About The Venus Project with Jacque Fresco and Roxanne Meadows

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In this interview, Jacque Fresco and Roxanne Meadows of The Venus Project answers some inquisitive questions about everything from design to decision making, with the interviewer playing ‘devils advocate’. The interview aims to get answers to questions not answered before by The Venus Project.

All images and designs in the video is attributed to The Venus Project and Jacque Fresco.

“The Venus Project advocates an alternative vision for a sustainable new world civilization unlike any socio-economic system that has gone before. It calls for a straightforward redesign of a culture, in which the age-old inadequacies of war, poverty, hunger, debt, and unnecessary human suffering are viewed not only as avoidable, but totally unacceptable.” – The Venus Project

You might also want to see this recording from their lecture in Stockholm 2010: http://www.theresourcebasedeconomy.com/2011/03/the-venus-project-stockholm-lecture-july-2010/

Experience more on their website: www.thevenusproject.com


A Desert Island

This article is extracts from a longer discussion on The World Freedom Demo group on Facebook.

You might also want to read the post ‘Will a Resource Based Economy Work?‘, for a more in depth look at RBE.

Picture a group of 100 people on a desert island. They only have what nature provides. There are no banks and no money.

What will be most efficient and meaningful to do?

1. To establish a ‘monetary system’ where everyone gets ‘points’ or ‘promissory obligations’ based on how much they contribute, and have one part of the population manage this system. Still, they would get in trouble when one person says, ‘I spent all day fishing! I deserve a full day’s wage!’, while the other one say’s ‘But you didn’t catch any fish! I, on the contrary spent all day building bungalows, I deserve a full day’s wage, not him!’, while the third person say’s ‘I’ve been sitting and thinking all day, coming up with much better solutions on both building bungalows AND catching fish! I deserve 3 day’s of wages!’, while the 4th person say’s ‘I have been working my ass of managing our monetary system! I deserve a weeks wages!’. No matter if there is interest or not interest on the money, one would have to establish the worth of all the different activities and ‘products’. How to one really do that? Of course, supply and demand, which really is totally manipulatable. One day one guy picks all the bananas and say’s ‘I picked all the bananas, now you have to buy them from me’. And of course, in a matter of days, they rot, the others get’s pissed, war is inevitable.

or

2. Skip the whole monetary system, get out of their egos and simply contribute where it is needed. And of course, not everyone will be fit to do everything, so the ones who WANT’S to fish and are good at it, they fish. Those who WANT’S to cook and are good at it, they cook. Those who WANT’S to sit and think out better solutions to stuff and share that with the other, do that. And everyone needs places to sleep, so everyone contributes to building bungalows. And yes, there might be discussions and arguments about what works best, who did what and how much. But then again, we are talking about THE EGO’s here, the ones ALL OF US have to get out of. In any case, they won’t have to toil with a monetary system on top of it. It is much much easier for them to simply be humble, helpful and creative and cooperate in building the best world they can for each other there on the island. In fact, they are already living in a paradise with free bananas and coconuts, fish and more. And interacting with this wonderful world and each other gives them tremendous joy. Non of them would ever think of hoarding bananas or fish, to sell to each other later. This would be meaningless. And of course, non of them would claim any of the others beds as ‘theirs’. They would live in a gift economy where no accounts are made on ‘who did what’. Everyone has a conscience that feels if one has been lazy for too long, others will start to grumble and say ‘get of your ass’!

The monetary system is BASED on egoism and indoctrination to a scarcity mindset. It is based on greed. It is based on an illusion. It is based on keeping the population brainwashed as to what is really relevant and necessary in the world. We live in a paradise. But the paradise has been corrupted by money and property.

People DO contribute as needed in many many many many many cases without monetary reward every single day on this planet. The family is one example, where one might cook dinner, while the other is washing clothes. There’s no money or ‘promissory obligations’ involved. Another example would be volunteers on a project, where some might plant trees, while others spread mulch. And true friends help friends every day for free. www.doctorswithoutborders.org/ is a good example of where doctors and nurses contribute as needed without any monetary incentive. A lot of software we have today has been made free of charge. Wikipedia is another example of people who do contribute as needed, where thousands of article writers all over the world share their knowledge for free. And these examples are only a tiny fraction of the millions of people volunteering every day all over the planet in countless projects and fields. If you don’t call that ‘contribute as needed’, I don’t know what is. To me this is outstanding proof that a resource based economy not only will work, but actually is working as we speak.

When it comes to tools and property, I think you misunderstand, Mike. No property doesn’t mean no tools. Why should it mean that? Let’s go back to the desert island again. Every tool they make and use there is of course shared with the ones who need them. The guy who made an axe from a rock, a stick and some straw of course lends his axe to the next person when needed. Why wouldn’t he? And of course, he also teaches others to make the same type of axe. The same goes for the fishing rod, the trunk canoe, the fibre rope, the ladder, the cutting tools and the paddle.

Now, sharing tools is a highly relevant topic in regards to RBE, and to make our world much more efficient and sustainable. If we all had shared a lot of our ‘tools’ (cars, boats, power drills, golf equipment, skis, etc.) instead of each one owning them, we could have managed with a lot less ‘tools’, and thus with a lot less production and strain on the environment. Not to speak of that we would ALL HAVE AN ABUNDANCE OF TOOLS. Instead of one measly drill or an old car we would instead share top super quality items. So, ‘no property’ doesn’t mean ‘no tools’. Quite the contrary. It means much more efficient use of tools. Also, instead of trying to minimize the cost of producing super cheap tools like power drills and such that have a short life span, we could have made only the best possible tools in all areas, lasting many many times longer, since we now would only need a fraction of them. But of course, our monetary system is based on continuous consumption, so to optimize production like this would mean the loss of too many jobs. This might be a bit better with MPE, but a certain amount of continuous consumption must always be there with a monetary system.

You’re right about EGO, though. Ego is not the only reason people do or don’t contribute. Their upbringing and environment is another, just as important, reason. What one is taught to do from childhood is paramount in this regard. And yes, this has nothing to do with ego, but simply how one is ‘programmed’ to think from day one in one’s life. MPE might be a brilliant ‘first step’ to alleviate us all from the devastating banking system and introduce a more human and actually functioning economic system. And we might stick with the ‘MPE’ system for several decades. Still, in the end, a moneyless system is not only possible, but it is the most stress free, natural, uncomplicated and most desirable system we can implement on the planet. When you think about it.


Will a Resource Based Economy Work?

There has been a longer discussion recently in this article whether a resource based economy will work or not. And the opposer’s argument was largely centered around a notion that in RBE there will be no contracts, that people can just walk away from their ‘job’, and that this will lead to a lack of mining ‘ore’. That we won’t find people to work in the mines to dig up minerals needed for our ‘social production’ as he calls it, to produce our cell phones and laptops, etc.

Of course, he does have a point. But not only in regards to mining ore, but in regards to the operation of the whole planet. I understand his concern as I have it myself. The complexity of the world we have today is extremely vast when it comes to the production of goods and services. Of course, mining of ore to extract minerals, is one of the aspects of this complexity. We have a huge production of different products that need everything from aluminum to plastics to glass to silicon to mention but a tiny percentage of the whole. And all of these minerals and raw materials are processed in a lot of different places and manufactured into a huge amount of different products. And this goes on on thousands of locations all over the planet.

All of the ‘alternative solutions’ to the problems we have in the world today deal with solutions within the monetary system. We have ‘recycling’, ‘carbon shares’, ‘cradle to cradle’, ‘environmental protection’, and so forth. All of these deals with the industry and the monetary system staying as it is. ‘Recycling’ means that we have to recycle the minerals and raw materials used in many of our products. ‘Carbon shares’ is a ‘monetary way’ for the society to be able to continue to pollute the environment, but it will cost a bit more for the polluter. ‘Cradle to cradle’ means that industries produce everything with the termination and recycling of the product in mind, not using any harmful agents in the product. ‘Environmental protection’ is the total of all measures taken in regards to protect the environment, but still within the monetary system.

All of these measures assume that the monetary system, the industry, the free market and so forth stay largely as it is. With recycling, cradle to cradle and carbon shares thinking, we still think in terms of continuous consumption and unlimited economic growth.

It is understandable that the majority of people can not think in terms of changing the whole system, from the root and up, because it is very difficult to think that far ‘out of the box’.

We have all become used to our way of life, with tonnes and tonnes of different products in thousands of different categories. And we all think that this has to go on. We all think that we need hundreds of different producers of cell phones, lap tops, cars, mattresses, guitars, etc. etc.

Yes, we, humans are an industrious race. We have ideas, we produce, we manufacture, we consume, and we do it all over again. This is who we are. Isn’t it? Humans have proven to be full of ideas and ingenious solutions to many of the problems of being human. We are also very good at creating problems for ourselves, so that we can have yet more to solve. We constantly do this, and it seems to be human nature. And we all wan’t to be free. Free to do what we want, travel where we want, think and say what we want, work with what we want and live wherever we want. Of course, this kind of freedom is limited to only a few in our world today.

My point and question is; How can/will a resource based economy work on a global scale, without it becoming a ‘totalitarian’ system? For sure, none of us want’s any ‘global machine government’, even though that is what Jacque Fresco of The Venus Project proposes. We all want’s to be able to make our own decisions. So, how can it work, then? We are all so indoctrinated into thinking that if there’s no ‘penalty’ in terms of ‘job loss’, ‘money loss’, ‘property loss’ and so forth, we can’t get people to do what is needed in society.

We think that if everyone will be able to ‘do whatever they want to do’, then we will lack a whole lot of people to ‘dig ore’ as our commenter puts it. No one will take on a dangerous job like going into the mines and dig out the urgently needed minerals to produce our cell phones, because when he/she get’s everything he/she needs, he/she could simply walk away whenever he/she want’s. Since there wouldn’t be any binding contract (in terms of money/property/job loss) in a resource based economy, the whole of society would simply collaps.

Trust me, I truly, really and utterly understand this concern and this disbelief in a resource based economy.

The first time I heard about RBE, I immediately got a feeling that ‘this is good’, but at the same time, I couldn’t get it to work in my intellectual analyzing mind. And that’s why I started this blog. I felt strongly that RBE is possible, and not only possible, but the best alternative humanity has ever been able to choose. But I couldn’t prove it. Because I too was totally indoctrinated in my mind in regards to thinking about money and property as givens. As something that’s always been there, like air. It has taken me a couple of years to ‘dedoctrinate’ myself into seeing how RBE can be possible.

So, back to our question. If we have no money or need for money, and everything is provided for everyone, what will make people ‘work in the mines’ and do all the ‘dirty work’ needed in our society? It is a very good question, and I am not sure that I can give a 100% answer to that. Because I don’t know. I can only speculate and imagine, which I have done for a couple of years. And my answer goes like this:

Firstly, we have to think of RBE as a totally and utterly different society. We can not think of an RBE society with our ‘monetary goggles’. We have to take them off. We have to be able to imagine that the individuals on this planet can actually shift their way of thinking from a ‘penalty based’ society to a ‘freedom of contribution’ society where we do what we do because we want to contribute to society in meaningful ways. Many people think this way already and refuse to take jobs ‘just to earn money’ but do what they do because of their conviction in a different society. They have an inherent need to do something meaningful that truly contributes to this world. Thinking that there has to be a ‘monetary penalty’ lurking in the background to get people to do what is really needed in society is seeing this with the old ‘monetary goggles’.

The truth is that the monetary reward is over rated in terms of production efficiency. There have numerous studies that support this. Take a look at Dan Pink’s TED Talk about this phenomena and the animation made from it. What is shows is that higher incentives leads to worse performance. It sounds like a self contradictory statement, but when you think about it and see the background, it is not. And these results have been replicated over and over again by psychiatrists, sociologists and economists. For simple, straight forward tasks, ‘if you do this, then you get that’, monetary incentives are great. But when a task get’s more complicated, when it requires some more conceptual thinking, the monetary incentives don’t work.

What the research continues to show is that money is a motivator only when it gets people to take on a job. After getting the job, there are other factors that leads to better performance and personal satisfaction, and they are; Autonomy, mastery and purpose. Money only plays a part if the job doesn’t pay good enough for people to make a living. As soon as people are paid enough, then these other factors are the important ones.

What this shows is that the true values within humans are not ‘penalty centered’, but rather centered around our previous notion of ‘freedom of contribution’. Autonomy is a vital value. People want’s to feel that they have a freedom to choose what they do and how they do it. Mastery is an equally important value. To have enough education and experience to really feel that one masters and succeeds in resolving the tasks at hand. And last, but not least: purpose. We all have to feel a sense of purpose in what we do. It has to be meaningful. In other words, money, and the threat of a ‘monetary penalty’ is not the reasons why people do stuff.

This shows to prove that people actually might be ‘digging ore’ if there is a sense of autonomy, mastery and purpose in the job.

Then we come to the point where we have to take off the ‘monetary goggles’ and put on the ‘RBE goggles’ instead. When we have this totally brand new world and way of thinking, there would be so many things that would be different. Since people doesn’t have to take a job because of money anymore, what would people do? Why would they do anything? Well, the former section should give the answer. People would seek meaningful and purposeful tasks. We would seek tasks where we feel a sense of autonomy and mastery. I think we also can add several reasons why people would do stuff that the mentioned research doesn’t show. Like excitement, interest and fulfillment.

So, meaning, purpose, mastery, autonomy, excitement, interest and fulfillment are what really drives people, and what will drive people in a resource based economy.

Now, back to ‘digging ore’. If this activity brings any of the above mentioned elements, people will do it. But, when we have a resource based economy, where most people have waken up from the continuous consumption cycle and where most people want’s to contribute to the betterment of society, things like ‘digging ore’ will not be as needed as before. Why? Because of several things. With the new mindset of humanity, consumption will go drastically down. Not so much new minerals and raw materials has to be dug up. Production will go down too, as products will be made to last and instead of postponing the release of new technology to maximize profit, the newest technology can be released right away, thus saving millions of tonnes of raw material that other wise would have been used in the never ending ‘new products’. And lastly, technology that ‘digs ore’ will be developed, minimizing the need for human personell way down in the mines.

To see how a resource based economy can work, we can divide it into 4 categories:

1. The human values has changed, or rather, has become acknowledged.

2. Technology has become more and more developed, removing the need for humans doing dangerous and repetitive tasks.

3. As a result of RBE, society as a whole has changed drastically.

4. The notion of ‘property’ and ‘ownership’ has changed.

 

Human Values

The most important first step for RBE to work is the human values. As we see, people are intrinsically motivated by other things than money, like a sense of purpose and meaning. It is only today’s need for money that locks people into a ‘mind prison’ thinking that money is what motivates them, when it really is not.

So this is about education and awakening. For RBE not to be a totalitarian, global, machine based government, which non of us want, people have to wake up one by one into the truth of their own motivation. We, as individuals have to train ourselves and each other into thinking of ‘why we are here’ and ‘what we really want to do’, not in terms of money, but in terms of what we feel as our true purpose here on the planet.

I am training myself everyday to think this way. And the way I do it is to tell my self that every thing I do, I do of service to the planet and humanity, service to others, and service to my self. Service to my self in terms of what I want to do here on earth. And, I have already had the epiphany that being of service to others can be extremely fulfilling for my self. Thus, doing what I do the very best way I can do it, is a fulfilling thing. And this has nothing to do with money. What is funny, though, is that since I started thinking like this, I have had more to do in my business than ever before, which of course brings in much more money than ever before as well….

Of course, we can say that money is a means of gratitude, a ‘flow of appreciation’, going from one person to another. I am not opposed to that way of thinking. Far from it. It is just that money and property and the whole management of the whole planet has been so thoroughly fucked up by the ‘money logic’, that trying to think of a world totally without money and property would do us all very good. It certainly does me good. And I realize that as soon as I start to think in terms of money, I immediately get that old stressful feeling again. It is me not thinking about money but at my purpose of being of service that brings the money in! Because when I think that I don’t need money, I become relaxed, and the ‘law of attraction’ works in my favor.

And then, my friends, what would be the logical consequence of this? Well, if all of us started thinking of our purpose, rather than money, and doing things out of purpose rather than money…….we wouldn’t need any money! When our purpose is to be of service, to give and share, then everyone will always have enough of everything ever needed. And low and behold, we would actually live purpose- and meaningful lives. Every one of us. No need to stress for more money, paying bills, pay taxes, take up loans, do accounting, pay insurance, and what have you.

For a resource based economy to work, more and more people on the planet have to wake up to this reality. It is a human choice that we have to do as individuals. There are already a whole lot of volunteers around the world working for non-profit volunteer organizations. So the notion is not new. The question is whether it will spread to the rest of society as well. But that a whole world could ‘work for free’ for each other should be totally possible. At least when enough (critical mass) people realize the benefits of doing this, rather than toiling with money and all that it entails.

 

Technology

When the new value system is in place, when enough people realize the above mentioned, both people who now are in ‘normal jobs’, but also those who are in politics and those who run large corporations, the abandonment of money will be a reality. Then, with the profit motive gone, technology can be developed without the hindrances that patents and greed used to be for unlimited development.

When we can concentrate on developing the best technology for everyone in every circumstance, and we can truly let technology replace 99% of today’s jobs. Jobs that now are ‘kept open’, since replacing them with technology would be devastating for the economy. Today, millions of people still work in factories doning work that easily could have been replaced by machines, robots and technology. There are already a whole lot of machines and technology in place, but again and again, I see people ‘closing the lid’ on cardboard boxes and other meaningless repetitive tasks easily replaceable by technology.

And back to the ‘ore digging’ metaphor. I am pretty sure that this field is also one where technology and machines could do much more work then it does today, replacing the need for human personell in mines. Besides, when we truly make products to last, and human values have changed, we won’t consume as much, and we will be able to recycle 100% of all ‘waste’, maybe extracting enough of what raw materials we need, not needing to dig much more holes in the planet. In other words, technology teamed with the new human values, will make the need for constantly new stuff much much less, and thus the need to constantly dig up new resources.

And to me, being a part of a world where we all try to maximise human and environmental potential and protection, rather than profit, and where we work to develop technology to serve these ends is very interesting and fulfilling.

It would also be a true investment in humanity and the planet. An investment where we strive to take care of the environment, build up the soil, educate all humans and build a sustainable world. A world we all can truly enjoy for the rest of our lives and for all coming generations.

 

Society

Now, with the human values and the new focus on technology in place, society will change drastically. We all work to fulfill our purpose in life, for our own and others betterment, to master new skills, to share our knowledge and experience and to have exiting and meaningful ‘work’. In a society with no money or property we can all truly care about each other with no ‘secret agenda’.

All humans will be educated to serve other humans and the planet itself. The population will automatically stabilize when everyone understands that every person can not have more then one child in his/her lifetime, meaning maximum two children per family. When this is followed we will have a ‘one birth per one death’, securing a stable population on the planet. And this is made by individual choice, not by force. By choice, because people now are educated to see the whole picture, and their own place in it.

What used to be companies and corporations will transform to be hubs of knowledge within their respective fields. There can still be ’employees’, but they won’t be there because they need to collect a pay check. They will be there because it is their field of interest and of expertise, because they want to be there. To participate and collaborate. People can still start ‘businesses’, but not for monetary gain, but to work together on new solutions to old or new problems, to create works of art, to draw new buildings, develop new transportation or new types of energy, new medicines or what have you. It will be a purpose driven world, rather than a profit driven one. It will be a world where human potential is maximized in all aspects.

So then, what would the ‘ore miners’ do? Maybe some of them have been working in the mine for years and years and know nothing else. Maybe these would want to continue doing what they do, but maybe a little less. Maybe take a long vacation, or only work a couple of days a week. Maybe this leads to a deficiency of Coltan for a while, but so what? So what if we don’t get the new iPhone 5 this fall. So what if we don’t get the newest flat screen 52 inches LED powered Full HD TV this christmas. So what!?

The only ‘thing’ in this world that ‘needs’ this is the never satisfied, always craving, always consuming, never stopping Monetary System that needs cyclical consumption, planned obsolescence and endless waste to exist. But WE don’t need that. We are not ‘consumers’, it is this system that has made people this way. It is this system that needs us to constantly consume and crave more and more and more, and no wonder, cause if we don’t, the whole system will collaps. Just like that. If we stop buying our cell phones, our cars, our flat screens, our new jeans, our jewelry, our what have you, there will be no more monetary system. So, that’s why we need an alternative ASAP. And here we are, discussing RBE.

Back to the ‘ore miners’. Some other of the ore miners might have thought of smarter ways to do things, might have ideas to ease the process of getting up that ore. But, he can’t tell anyone about it, because if he does, he might loose his job. Because his idea is for a machine that can DO his job. But now, in the new resource based economy, that is exactly what he can do. Of course, the mining company doesn’t need to earn money any more either, so they might also relax a bit, digging that ore.

They have now become a part of a global cooperation of former mining companies, working together in coordinating what is really needed of mined minerals in the world. And the former ore miner workers idea to a new machine that can replace the humans needed down in the mine is welcomed with open arms. He becomes a part of the new global mining cooperation, working together with researchers, scientists and environmentalists on how to provide what is now needed of new minerals in a most planet friendly way.

Some of the other miners also want’s to be a part of this and becomes a part of the global team. Then again, other miners might grab the opportunity to do something completely different. One of them had always had an interest for sociology, but never go to study it. He goes of to university. The university that is now open for everyone. And the learning is now strongly aided by new technology, facilitating the possibility for many more people to learn than ever before. Another one had wanted to travel the world. Off she goes, being able to go anywhere she wants for as long as she wants. She learns a lot on her trip, and want’s to study anthropology to understand indigenous people better, and how they can contribute to the world. A third one had several inventive ideas for improving and cleaning contaminated water. He quickly finds other people within these fields where his ideas becomes picked up, improved, tested and used in the real world, improving water everywhere it is needed.

All former patents are now made public, for everyone to study and contribute to. All secrets ever held by governments are let out in the open. All borders are opened and totally free travel by every one made possible. New efficient, environmentally friendly, energy independent and healthy transportation, housing and cities are built all over the planet. And everyone can live anywhere they want, according to their own interest and need. Everyone can contribute in the fields that interest them the most. Everyone can educate themselves in new fields at any time. The world has become 100% efficient in terms of human satisfaction and development. The question is, ‘what do you want to do?’. Not in terms of money, but in terms of what is needed on the planet at any time and what the individual feel is fulfilling to spend his or her days on.

There is a natural coordination in this. When a beach is full, one goes somewhere else. When a field is full, when an area is full, when there is no need, one finds something else to do, elsewhere. And there will always be needs that needs to be met. And we meet them in our full ability. If it is too much, we say so and get more help. We all collaborate in this world.

Humanity has discovered it’s true purpose here on earth. It turned out that it is not to compete for imaginary money and to hoard property, but to build a better world together, so that everyone can participate in true challenges and feel true and lasting joy.

 

Property and ownership

Property and ownership have, as money, been around for thousands of years, and has been the key building blocks in the development of the capitalist socio-economic system. So, what about property and ownership in RBE? I feel the thoughts float towards ‘communism’ and other not-so-nice ‘isms’ here. Shall we have no ownership and own no property in RBE?

I will make a distinction here between ‘personal property’ and ‘public property’. ‘Personal property‘ is your movable items that you own, also called ‘movable property’. ‘Public property‘ is what today is dedicated to the use of the public, owned collectively by the population or the state. Today, one person can own vast amounts of land and other property as their private property. More and more state property is now also becoming privately owned. This has been the constant struggle between the capitalists and the state for millennia. The state and the public want’s to have property available for it’s citizens, while the capitalists want’s to secure as much property for themselves.

In RBE, some different models can be discussed. Obviously, no one person can own huge amount of land, like there is today. Still, if a family or a person want’s and needs some land to have a ‘family domain’ to live on and to grow their own food on, this could be accommodated. Then ‘who’ would accomodate this, one might ask. In Jacque Fresco’s RBE, there wouldn’t be any ‘state’. Instead, there would be computerized decision making, determining the fate of humanity. I can not see this working on a large, global scale. For sure, computers can, and does, make a lot of day to day decisions. And for sure, they can and will definitely be extended to make more societal decisions than they do today. But, many decisions will still have to be up to us, the humans. And not to forget, WE are the ones who will be programming the computers, based on what we want out of them.

I foresee some kind of coordination, where coordinators and informators are assigned to different areas on the planet. The persons will not have any deciding power, but will coordinate and inform, together with data technology, what is decided on a particular place. They will be coordinating and informing the community, so to speak. But the community will have constant voting power in all relevant areas. Not like today, where someone are elected, and you have to stick with that person for the remainder of the period. I say ‘relevant areas’, because some things can not be voted upon, like the best angle for the pillar under the bridge that is to be built. These types of decisions are up to the specialized personell.

Computers and coordination aside, back to the land. The Venus Project proposes to build completely new cities that would be 100% self sufficient in terms of energy and food production, and very efficient in terms of transportation, energy use and waste management. This is something that would be a natural extension of RBE, when the majority of humans starts to think not in terms of money, but in terms of the betterment of people and the planet. So, new and more efficient cities is a natural way to use the land. At the same time, existing cities will be optimized as much as possible in terms of energy use, transportation and waste management. Buildings and parts of cities that are too difficult to optimize, will be recycled into new uses.

Today we have a lot of farming on the planet. Outside our existing cities there are hectare upon hectare of fields of all sorts, producing everything from maize to potatoes and rice to grapes. Today, all of the production of food is dependent on oil, both for transportation, but also for fertilizers and pesticides. An lot of today’s food production is simply thrown away to uphold the food prizes on the global marked. Too much bananas? Then we throw some mega tonnes away, so that the rest can be sold for a good prize. Today, millions of tonnes of food is thrown away every day, because unsold food rot away in supermarkets waste containers. At the same time our earth and soil and water gets contaminated with all the artificial fertilizers and pesticides used to grow the food.

I RBE, the new cities will be 100% self sufficient in terms of food production, utilizing both hydroponics, aquaponics and permaculture principles, providing clean, safe, nutritious and locally produced food all year round with absolutely no use of artificial fertilizers and pesticides. Very little food will go to waste in RBE, and we will thus need to produce much less of it, than today. So, some land around the cities will be used for food production for that respective city. And since there is no competition between food producers, the food production can be optimized to the true need of the population, minimizing wasteful production and transportation.

Of course, there will be a lot of room for individual choice in RBE, much more than today, where individual choice is determined by ones money amount. If one want’s to live on an ‘old type’ farm, on the country side, one can do this. This is not problem. There is still plenty of land on the planet, and people who want’s to live in wooden old houses, redecorate themselves and grow their own food, can do that. If they want’s to combine and use the latest technology on ‘their’ land, they can do that too.

Just as today, we will in RBE have three major categories of land:

1. Cities

2. Country side

3. Wilderness

In difference from today, we will all have access to all of it. Of course, if someone is using it already, and that use is needed, then that part of the land is ‘taken’. Just like when you come to a beach, you don’t put your towel on top on someone else’s. No you put your towel somewhere else on the beach. And if the beach is full, you go somewhere else, or come back another day. And property will be used ‘purposefully’. If there is a factor there, producing clothing or something else, then that property is used for that, just like today, except that no one ‘own’ the factory, but all of us. Someone has responsibility over it, but no one ‘owns’ it.

In today’s world, we see that in many cases, things work better if they are privately owned and sold to the public. At the same time, privately owned corporations can be responsible for a lot of pollution and misbehaving. In other cases, public services work better than private. It seems like it all boils down to the individuals behind it. A corporation can be (quite) environmentally conscious, treat it’s employers well, and work pretty well for all parties. Still, it is totally binded by the demand of the owners and employees to make profit and ‘go well’ economically speaking. This, more often than not, ruins the businesses possibility to act in a responsible way when it comes to the environment and to it’s employees.

Then we come to today’s public services. Some work well, some work terrible. At least, there isn’t as pronounced profit motive here, as with the privately owned corporations, so more regards can be given to environment and human health. But again, public services are also dependent on money, and thus, are also somewhat a slave to the profit motive.

Privately or publicly owned. What is best? Again, it seems like it boils down to the persons and the intent behind it. It is the individual persons with their stronger or weaker intent that drives the results in this.

Non of us want’s a resource based economy to be a new totalitarian dictatorial system. So, back to our first premise, ‘human values’ and ‘human awakening’. It all boils down to this. We, as individuals have to wake up and consciously choose this new direction. We have to consciously choose to share our property and give it up as our ‘own’. We have to understand the value in RBE against today’s system, and choose based on what works best.

‘Property’ is a mindset. As written in another article, we don’t really ‘own’ anything. ‘Ownership’ is an illusion. We think we own things, we believe we own stuff, but really, we don’t. At best, we can say that ‘this is in my possession as long as I need it and use it’. This is the only ‘ownership’ we will ever have over anything. You have a pair of jeans. You might have bought them in a store, you might have gotten them as a gift, or you might have picked them up for free in a used clothes container or sharing market. In any case, you are ‘in possession’ of them right now. You might lend them to a friend, you might give them away tomorrow, they might be ripped apart by your dog, you might loose them on a trip, or you might throw them away. In any case, when were they ‘yours’? Were ‘yours’ when they were made at the factory? Are they still ‘yours’ after you have given them away?

No, the notion of ‘ownership’ and ‘property’ is only a construction to make the capitalistic society work. Ownership and property has been tools to create the economy and the system we have today, the monetary capitalistic system. There is no real ownership in nature. There is only temporary use and respect for each other. As long as we respect each other, our ‘personal space’, then we will have no problems. You can keep a pair of pants for as long as you will, but they are never truly ‘yours’. You can walk in the forest, and as you walk on the path, you are using the path, but it is never ‘your property’.

So, how will property and ownership work in a resource based economy? It will work like it works in nature. You will ‘own’ your creations, but not in a way that prevents others to use them and continue to develop them. You will ‘own’ your pants, but only as long as you need and want them. You will ‘own’ everything you need as long as you need it. In other words, all land will be public, but you can grow your own vegetables on a plot of land and take care of that as ‘your own’ as long as you would like that. But you can’t claim vast amounts of land as ‘your own’ if you or your family doesn’t need it. You will ‘own’ your ‘personal property’ for as long as you want and need it, and the rest will be public property.

In other words, all land will be public, but one can get designated areas to have for instance a ‘family domain’ or to grow you own vegetables. In general, we will work together to use land and grow food in the most sustainable ways, with or without machinery.

Housing will also be common and open to anyone. Meaning that if you want to live one place for a longer period, you can do that for as long as you want. But if you want to move, you can do that too. And you don’t need to bring all the furniture with you, since that will exist on the new place. To travel and visit other countries and cultures will also be much easier in a resource based economy.

In genreal, the distinction is between ‘ownership’ and ‘accessibility’. It should be pretty clear by now, that when no one owns anything, but have access to everything, we all will have much much more access to all the things we today have limited or no access to. At the same time, a lot less would have to be produced of the same things.

Take cars, for instance. Today we have a vast amount of cars on the planet, and more are produced every single day. Still, most of them stands still for 90% of the time, not being in use. So, we have parking lots brim full of unused cars, because we all have to own one. When we instead own nothing, but have access to everything, we wouldn’t need one tenth of the cars we have today. When we instead share cars, we can all have access to a lot more cars than when we all have to own one car each. We will even have access to cars we never dreamed of driving before.

When we share everyone get’s more. Both of land, cars, travel possibilities, boats, clothing, furniture, technology and what have you. Our choices becomes virtually unlimited in RBE vs. in today’s ownership system.

For example, Google (one of the new knowledge hubs in RBE) have developed technology for cars so that they can drive themselves (See video here). With this kind of technology, there wouldn’t be any problem with sharing cars. One could have a ‘car pool’, where one could simply order a car, and the car would show up on your front porch. You wouldn’t even have to drive it if you didn’t want to. You could get in, and relax with a good book, check out the scenery, or take a nap, while the car safely drives you to all the way to your destination.

Of course, this is only the beginning. Eventually, cars will also be electric, non-polluting, and maybe even fly!

 

Conclusion

In summing up, a resource based economy is hard to imagine from our existing mindset and what we are used to. It sounds to good to be possible. But why not? This might be the only solution we have if we want to survive as a species. Maybe we simply have to make it work.

Personally, I think RBE is more than possible. I think it is viable and a real solution for humanity. We are already half way there, with all the voluntarism that exists in the world.

The future is limitless. But only if we let go of the hoarding and self centeredness and look at what is really possible when we abandon money an focus together on our common future.

Maybe we can look at a resource based economy as the world today, only without money and property, the hopeless financial crisises, wars and backwards thinking, but with an emphasis on sharing, experimenting, exploring, collaborating and celebrating.

With a common effort, focussing on values and technology, we can do it. Why not?

 


The Venus Project – Stockholm Lecture July 2010

I was so fortunate as to meet Jacque Fresco and Roxanne Meadows in Stockholm and was able to film their lecture. So, here is the recording of their lecture in Stockholm July 24. 2010. In this lecture they explain The Venus Project and a resource based economy.

Total time: About 2 hours.

First hour is lecture. Second hour is Q & A.

The lecture is about how our mind set and the monetary system is the source of the problems in the world today, and how a resource based economy, a society without money or trade, an updating of our values and mind set, and relevant use of technology and knowledge can develop our civilization to become a truly sustainable society with abundance for everyone.

Filmed by Harald Sandø and Vesa Rahkola.
Edited by Harald Sandø

The lecture was arranged by The European Organisation for Sustainability (EOS) and The Zeitgeist Movement Sweden.

 
thevenusproject.com
thezeitgeistmovement.com
eoslife.eu
thezeitgeistmovement.se
haraldsando.com

 

 


You Never Really Own Anything

Ownership. Property. This is mine. This is yours. Do you think you own anything? You don’t. Ownership is an illusion. So is property. Why? Because all the things you use are only used by you temporarily before they are passed on or thrown away. Be it food, clothing, cars, property, furniture, cell phones, air, water. You never say to anyone ‘Don’t breath here! This air is mine!’. Of course not. Air is still free, and no one claims to own it. Water is also in a large degree free, but is becoming more and more privatized. Food, clothing, cars and land has become utterly privatized. Still. You don’t, and never will own anything of it.

You use it.

You don’t own it.

At best, all you can say about ownership is that ‘this is in my possession now and as long as I am using it’. That is the most ‘ownership’ there is. Everything that you ‘own’ is only ‘yours’ temporarily. It is only borrowed or rented. Your food goes into you and comes out again. So does the water. Even your body is on loan. When you die it goes back into the circulation. Ownership is an illusion. Still, it’s an illusion bought by humanity. But it is no more than an agreement that say’s that ‘ok, we will have a system here that gives some the right to claim vast resources of the planet for themselves, while others get nothing’.

There’s no ownership in nature. There’s only coexistence, with every part fulfilling their task, and every part being fulfilled in doing so. In a moneyless society and resource based economy this is how we will look at ownership, since this is the only ‘ownership’ there is and ever will be. Having a paper that say’s you own something doesn’t make it more ‘yours’ in the big scheme of things. Whatever you ‘own’ can be lost in the blink of an eye.

Today ownership is almost equal to accessibility. The more you own, the more access you have to things in life. The more land you own, the more cars you own, the more houses you own, etc. The problem is that you are only one person and cannot possibly make 100% use of all the things you own. Even if you only own one car and a guitar. You will never be able to use whatever you own all the time.

If, however, you didn’t own anything, but had access to virtually everything this planet and humanity can offer, you would ‘own’ more than the richest people on this planet will ever own. I’ll say this again, because this is the most important thing there is to grasp when it comes to concept of non-ownership:

If you didn’t own anything, but had access to virtually everything this planet, and humanity, can offer, you would own more than the richest people on this planet will ever own. The whole planet would be yours to use. Of course, this means that all borders and visas would have to go too.

In a resource based economy everyone will have access to virtually everything on this planet. Today we think that if this was the case, everyone would rush to the same places and go for the same things, because that is what is seemingly happening today. ‘Everyone’ seem to run after the same things. And sometimes, yes, some things are more popular than others. But we must remember that a lot of this is due to advertising and promotion seeking a certain behavior among the population fulfilling the profit motive of the capitalistic system.

One example of a moneyless system in today’s society is the library. Sometimes you have to wait for books to come back, yes, but more than often the books you want to borrow are there for you. If the whole world was like the library, you might have to wait a while going to a certain beach or holiday resort if it was full for the time being. But, there would be lot’s and lot’s of other places to visit in the mean time, just like there would be lot’s of other interesting books to read while you were waiting for the one you wanted. Maybe you’d find other, even more interesting books to read, and places to visit, in the mean time.

The idea of ownership builds on the notion of scarcity. The thought that there is not enough of places and books for every one of us. Therefore, it is best to hoard as much as we can while we can. If we don’t, we risk being without, not having access and having to live a poor life.

Not owning anything could be the best experience humanity has ever had. It would result in the most abundant lifestyle anyone on this planet could ever dream of. Not owning anything is a notion built on the opposite of scarcity. It is a thought that when we share, everyone will have many times more than what we would ever have if we were to own everything we wanted. This includes the richest of the richest people on this planet. No one, I repeat, n o   o n e, can own the whole planet. Even though someone certainly tries to do just that, it will never happen. In any case no one would ever be able to use the whole planet for themselves only. You can’t swim on all the seas, climb all the mountains or eat all the food.

Some people try to own as much as possible, thinking this will bring the best lifestyle for them, not realizing that sharing will bring more to everyone, even them. Of course, we can not all have our own private jet or private beach. But we would have access to more jet’s and beaches than we could ever use in a world with no ownership.

So, since we don’t own anything anyway, since ownership is nothing more than an illusion bringing lack to the world, why not simply abandon it. Of course, this is not something that is done over night. Many people are ready for it, even rich people. But just as many people are afraid of it and far from ready. For it to happen this thought has to manifest itself throughout the population and take root. Humanity have to break free from the thought of money, property and ownership and open it’s eyes to the new virtually unlimited possibilities a moneyless society and a resource based economy can offer.


Yann Arthus-Bertrand – Home – The Movie

Yann Arthus-Bertrand has directed a most amazing film about the earth’s resources. How it all began, and how we are now depleting the planet. But, the film has hope in the end, mentioning positive developments around the planet.

Still, I can not understand how we can save this planet while holding on to the monetary system. The film is non-profit, but sponsored by several profit hungry companies, with the same profit hunger that has caused most of the depletion of resources the film is criticizing.

See the film here:

YouTube Preview Image

Home by Yann Arthus-Bertrand


Spirituality, Technology, and Sustainability

Spirituality, Technology, and Sustainability
(Open Response to The Zeitgeist Movement)

What follows here is a response to three of the six understandings of The Zeitgeist Movement as they appeared on November 28th of 2009. Our purpose here is to facilitate an open dialogue, discussion, and reach an understanding of sorts on the three topics choosen. We are not against the idea of a Resource Based Economy by any means. We find the development of this form of Natural Resource Economics to be quite a progressive step forward however as with an economic system there’s more then one way to apply it. Further we’d note that not all followers of The Zeitgeist Movement adhere to “The Party Line” in regards to these three topics. Further we will show how its not necessary either to Dogmatically hold up The Modern Scientific Method as infallible gospel. In fact as we point out in “A Science of Intuition by Sidney Martinez” the Modern Scientific Method and Ancient Scientific Method are two different things. We will of course delve into these things in detail through the course of the following polemical work. We will quote the original text and respond to each point made with our analysis.

Spirituality

{Spirituality has a different meaning to each of us, it seems. A standard definition would be: “A sense of meaning and purpose; a sense of self and of a relationship with ‘that which is greater than self”.}

It would actually be more accurate to say Spiritualism is a sense of “Ultimate Reality” and a persons place or relationship in that sort of ultimate reality. To pigeon hole all spiritualism as “that which is greater then self” is to imply that all Spiritual systems have a divine conception similar to that of Orthodox Judeo-Christian Religions. To those belief systems they see the Divine as something separate from the self or the individual. To them God is a separate consciousness and masculine patriarch sitting on a throne and judging all of our actions. However for Gnostic’s, Buddhists, Hindu’s, Shinto’s, and most Shamanic and Natural belief systems there is no such thing as “that which is greater then self”. The Self and Greater Self are not regarded as two separate or distinct things but rather one unified whole. So in conclusion your opening assertion is a quite fallacious broad generalization.

{Currently, Religion and Mysticism seem to have the monopoly on Spirituality. Theistic religion often regards a ‘relationship with god’ or divine creator, as a spiritual relationship, while Mystics will often find a relationship to a ‘supernatural’ force or power.}

Again we see a broad sweeping generalization which seems to be born of ignorance of what Natural Religions, Spiritualists, and Animists actually believe. While it is true that Orthodox-Abrahamic and all Literalistic based Religions promote a relationship with The Demi-Urge as something spiritual. Fact is mystics don’t seek a relationship with anything that exists outside of themselves or beyond themselves. In fact mystics will generally look for a God or Goddesses inside themselves and only use those terms externally as a name for a particular process. Heck modern astronomers do it to how many stars do you think are named after someone’s significant other or perhaps another loved one? This supernatural force or power of which you speak is really just subtle energy produced by the bodies varied emotional states. We know emotions effect us in both positive or negative ways and we know those same emotions effect people around us, animals, plants, and even water. This subtle energy of course is caused by certain unseen chemicals and particles that the intuitive mind knows are there. Yet the intuitive mind can’t see them physically so they are given the label of Subtle Energy. The problem is mainstream science has yet to bring these unseen particles into the realm of the observable so its written off as a bunch of Pseudo-Science. One fact we can both agree on for sure is that we only perceive a fraction of what actually exists in the universe with our eye’s the rest can’t be physically observed yet. Of course mystics are just trying to explain through Scientific Intuition what takes up the rest of the universe we can’t see observably and can’t test with The Modern Scientific Method.

{The bottom line is that, almost universally, spirituality has to do with a ‘relationship’ on one level or another. In most perspectives, it is associated with a person’s ‘place’ or ‘meaning’ in life… whatever that may be.}

No in only a very few perspectives which only account for about less then 30% of the religions that actually exist or have existed in the world is this relationship with an external divinity or force the standard of dogma. In Gnostic notions the focus tends to be on unifying one’s consciousness with their higher self, that self that has been separated from them by society’s material notions. In fact the general view is that the spiritual world exists inside of every individual at deeper levels then the physical world. Some even see it as a cosmic Word or Logos which is like a vibration or sound that originated with the big bang and continues to vibrant and animate all matter across the entire universe. Not so mystical when one speaks of what was the first sound in the universe and would it even have been audible?

{As subjective as these things can be, we begin to recognize changes in these notions, for social progress tends to carve a path for understandings that stand the test of time. In the modern age, we have the ability to look far in our past and examine what our ancestors used to consider ‘real’, and then compare those ideas to what we understand today. Many “spiritual practices” which have existed in the past, no longer exist due the understandings that have come about in regard to natural phenomenon.}

First off many “spiritual practices” which have existed in the past were wiped out by religion. Anyone who didn’t practice the spiritual practices deemed holy by the church was burned at the stake. However many should be curious what these spiritual practices, that are no longer relevant your referring too are. Meditation and variations of it such as Tai-Chi, Yoga, and Qi Gong all have been making a come back. It has been proven that people who use these methods attain better focus, health, clearer minds, negative emotions are also expelled. In fact the people who developed these things all knew one cold hard fact, which is that if you want to change the world you must start by teaching individuals to improve themselves. Other practices of the ancient spiritualists included the development of a theory of gravity in India 2000 years earlier then Sir Isaac Newton. An ancient Egyptian Steam Engine used to open temple doors, ancient batteries such as the Baghdad Battery, Sanitation, Medicine, Automatons, Accurate Clocks, and various other primitive spiritual practices as you call them. A fact you can’t deny is that all these things were invented by the so-called spiritual practices you keep trying to write off and pigeon hole as primitive. Further they had both an Intuitive and Material understanding of Observable and Unobservable Natural phenomenon. Unlike you they could see it from both sides and not based on some Dogmatic Materialist Scientific Method. Quite frankly the Ancient Scientific Method was much more advanced then the Modern Scientific Method you tout as the great salvation of all mankind. Whats more is this view point of labeling the ancient societies backwards and primitive well that notion was cooked up by the church. It was used as social propaganda on the people so they wouldn’t know that people used to have sanitation, or any sort of technology which made their lives better. They wanted the people of Dark Ages and Middle Ages to think things had been worse before the church and religious domination. These notions your expanding about ancient societies quite frankly are just a rehashing of dark ages church propaganda. Quite odd for a movement that believes religion produces nothing but false hope and social propaganda.

{As a base example, early religions often ‘sacrificed’ animals for certain purposes… this rarely happens today, as the relevance of such an act has proven pointless in its desired effect. Likewise, rarely do people perform ‘rain dances’ in order to influence the weather… today we understand how weather patterns are created, and ritual practices have no provable effect.}

For your information the religions that sacrificed animals tended to be semitic. Native Americans on the other hand usually thanked the earth for providing them the animal and thanked the animals spirit for giving them nourishment. While you may sit there and say this is bogus outdated spiritualism truth is they were simply embracing and being thankful every day to life, to the earth, and to each other for what they had. This is something any society which treasurers the resources of the earth as our common heritage would do. As for the animal sacrifices themselves those actually stopped because the ruling priestly caste of the Hyksos no longer found it to be a useful social control mechanism.

As for “Rain Dances” they were more of a festival and celebration native people’s held as a way of keeping up good morale during droughts. A way of saying gosh darn remember when it used to rain? Sometimes it rained afterwards and sometimes it didn’t and when it didn’t everyone understood that it just wasn’t meant to happen. Its obvious your completely ignorant of Native American culture and have no clue of native practices and rituals and what they mean. This interpretation of what a Rain Dance is seems to be coming from Hollywood and not any Native American elders you’ve actually gone and spoken too at the reservation. Further have you proven beyond a reasonable doubt that ritual practices have no effect? How many experiments have you run on the subject? How many rituals and subjects taking part in ritual did you study? Where’s the data proving this assertion? If your going to tout The Modern Scientific Method so highly why not use it to prove your assertions? we’re not saying Rain Dances can change the weather here what’s being said is you can’t make such a claim as Rain Dances have no effect until you can prove that beyond a reasonable doubt.

{Similarly, the idea of ‘praying’ to a god for a particular request, has also statistically proven to have little effect on an outcome,}

How is praying to a god the same as a ritual/ celebration?

{not to mention the evidence to support a personified creator doesn’t exist in any scientific way…rather it is often derived from ancient historical literary speculation and tradition.}

Well the idea of a personified creator is only as old as the church and it developed out of a literalistic view of scripture. Ancient Gods and Goddesses were Effigies related to Astronomical bodies and the stories associated with each were stories of people who may have existed at one point. Those actual people were thought to have the traits of the particular Gods or Goddesses they were associated with. The Avatars were just people who did things that inspired stories. So in fact the ancient historical literary speculation and tradition you speak of is again another assertion that ancient societies were more backwards then dark age societies.

{Establishment Religion, in many ways, seems to be rooted in a perceptual misunderstanding about life’s processes. For instance, it presents a world view which often puts the human on a different level than other elements of nature. This ‘spiritual ego’ has led to dramatic conflicts for generations, not only between human beings, but inadvertently between us and the environment itself.}

Again this statement seems to pigeon hole all spiritualism together into the same boat. Just one of the many hasty generalizations to be found throughout The Zeitgeist Movements what should be labeled “Misunderstandings” rather then Understandings. An understanding is usually what takes place when a person has thoroughly researched a topic and has studied it. So far there doesn’t seem to be any actual understanding of spirituality just a bunch of fallacious logic.

Also to reiterate the point not all spiritualism has created conflicts between us and the environment itself. If you were talking about Literalistic-Based-Abrahamic-Faiths then your claim would be accurate, however since your making no distinctions here the statement is incorrect. Further it begs the question of how has Buddhism, Shinto, Shamanism, Hinduism, Wicca, Taoism, etc. caused conflict between us and the environment itself?

{However, as time has moved forward, Science has shown how human beings are subject to the exact same forces of nature as everything else. We have learned that we all share the same atomic substructure as trees, birds and all other forms of life.}

Atoms were first discovered by The Greeks a bunch of mystics and pagans who had knowledge of mechanical engineering. So a more accurate statement then what you made would be that a bunch of Dogmatic tooters of The Modern Scientific rediscovered Atoms. In fact who knows just how far along The Greeks were in their studies of Atomic Structures, most of the knowledge of the ancient world was burned at the library of Alexandria. Yet what has survived of the ancient knowledge tells us that many of the Pagan societies of the past believe we shared the same energy as all other forms of life. Now you may call that mystic but fact is Atom’s are energetic hence (E=MC2) meaning everything is made up of energy. So anyone in the ancient world could conclude that we are all made up of the same universal force or energy. Because this mystical force as you called it earlier just means energy a force is like a current and energy is a current.

{We have learned that we cannot live without nature’s elements… we need clean air to breathe, food to eat, energy from the sun, etc. When we understand this Symbiotic relationship of life, we begin to see that as far as ‘relationships’ are concerned, our relationship to the planet is the most profound and important.}

So when did we learn this exactly according to you? It would seem your implying we didn’t learn this till the 1900’s. Pagan societies, Native American societies, and all Natural Religions around the world learned these facts about 10,000 – 8,000 years ago. In the west those facts were suppressed by the Literalistic Church so that Merchant Corpus’s (Corporations) and Equestrian Consortium’s (Banks) could keep the common people ignorant while they generated great amounts of capital. This is why Gnostic Christians, and Pagans were slaughtered by the early Literalistic Christians. So the Literalists could become the dominating faction of Christianity and create the church according to their patriarchal ambitions.

{The medium by which this is expressed, is Science, for the Scientific Method has allowed us insight into these natural processes, so we can better understand how we ‘fit’ into this life system as a whole.
This could be called a ‘spiritual’ awakening.}

Long before The Modern Scientific Method came around there was an Ancient Scientific Method used by Ancient Scientists whom you call “Mystics”. The Modern Scientific Method your Dogmatically pushing should more accurately be called The Observed Method since it relies solely on what can be seen. It was created on the assumption that the physical/ observable world is all that exists and nothing beyond it can exist. Yet what were finding more and more in Quantum Physics is that things beyond the physical and observable world do in fact exist. Right now you’d be on a very slippery slope saying that Physical Matter is all that exists and nothing can exist beyond it. Which if you do believe that we challenge you to create an experiment proving that the physical world beyond a reasonable doubt is all that exists. After all if your going to tout this observed method as absolute your going to need to develop an experiment to first prove the physical world, in which your conducting your experiments is actually here. Further your going to need to prove that the data developed from these experiments isn’t going to be biased by the eyes or the brain that interprets what the eyes are seeing. In fact any data you generate is already technically in the past there is no such thing as a “Real Time” experiment. Quite frankly how you can call this any sort of awakening is absurd a true awakening is reaching the skeptical viewpoint that nothing is absolute. In fact not even the physical world should be taken as absolute. After all a true skeptical scientist knows physical matter is not to be regarded in an absolute sense. A skeptical person maybe spiritual or maybe simply like Albert Einstein and regard the question of god as too complicated of a question for the human mind to ever fathom or comprehend. Of course this would mean that no book written by any human can ever answer those questions at best all they can do is offer different views on the subject. No one book or philosophy should ever be taken as absolute or the answer all book or notion including Scientific Materialism should be taken absolutely.

Albert Einstein himself was very fond of Eastern Mysticism such as Buddhism and Hinduism its obvious Einstein used the Ancient Scientific Method to make the discoveries he did. His method was both Intuition and Observation on the side of Intuition his proofing worked with Experienced Phenomenon, Understanding, Rationalization, and Conclusion and from that he worked at the Observable Level; which you call The Scientific Method. Fact is The Modern Scientific Method would be more complete and better equipped to solve social problems if it embraced Intuition as part of itself. To this end the truly Scientific Method would be “The Einstein Method” the perfect marriage of Intuition and Observation.

{This realization, which has been proven by science, is that humans are no different from any other form of nature, while our integrity is only as good as the integrity of our environment, to which we are a part. This understanding presents an entirely different ‘spiritual’ world view, for it forces the idea of interdependence and connection, at its core.}

This realization was also the reality of ancient cultures. Its just that as monetarism became the new dominating factor the old Spiritualism was phased out.

{The interconnection of the whole of life is undeniable in the most basic sense, and it is this perpetual ‘relationship’ of total interconnectivity that is not fully realized by society overall. Thus, our modes of conduct and perception are largely out of line with nature itself… and hence destructive.
Nature itself is our teacher, and our social institutions and philosophies should be derived from this foundational and, invariably, ‘spiritual’ understanding.
The faster this spiritual awakening spreads, the more sane, peaceful and productive society will become.}

What you speak of is not a spiritual awakening but a dominance of your dogmatic view overtaking everything else. It is true that everything is interconnected but every single assertion you’ve made throughout your so called understanding of Spiritualism was spawned by ignorance of spiritualism. Why don’t you actually speak to experts on these other viewpoints before you go around creating such obvious Straw men, Hasty Generalizations, and Pigeon Holes.

Technology and Sustainability

In this section we’re going to focus on the most blatant Mis Understandings as well as some points of agreement. Mainly because this document is getting much longer then was intended. So to keep it simple we’re going to selectively take text and respond to it. Anyone who gets a copy of this in booklet form is welcomed to go read for themselves the complete text itself mainly so nothing is taken out context. You can of course find it on Zeitgeist Movement’s homepage under Understandings. If that section is updated for whatever reason and specific lines changed we’ll keep an on line archive of it as it appeared on November 28th 2009 at www.thenewaeon.org and now on to the business of analysis.

{As time has moved forward, human beings have become more and more aware of nature, its processes, and thus have been able to derive inference about how to imitate nature in all its creative glory.
The result has been Technology, which is what separates us humans from the other species as far as functionality.}

On the one hand this seems obvious but here’s a question few consider. Some maybe familiar with experiments which allow wireless communications between a persons mind and a computer. Now tell me what aspect of nature is that mirroring exactly? Perhaps something the brain can already naturally do on its own? I suppose more study would be required to determine that beyond a reasonable doubt one way or the other. Either way it until its studied it would be illogical to draw absolute conclusions on the subject one way or the other.

{At the beginning of the Industrial Age, a great majority of people worked in factories. Today, automation comprises 90% of nearly all factories. This has displaced humans and created a large, artificial “service” industry in order to keep humans in employment for money.}

Absolutely true in fact money is in truth beginning to hold back scientific advances and development. Only the centralization of the ability to produce currency and the centralization of the ownership of debt built on the creation of money has been able to keep things moving forward. In East Asia for example the need to centralize debt and money in to the hands of fewer banking entities has created a surge of productivity. In the West the manufacturing base has all but disappeared and War seems to be the only thing able to stimulate economic growth.

{This pattern is very revealing. The implication is that machine automation is constantly challenging the role of general human labor. This doesn’t mean that humans will have “nothing to do” as time moves on. Quite the contrary… this implication denotes the freeing of humanity from jobs which humans do not care to engage in, so they will have time to pursue what they choose to.}

Again this is also true technology has the capacity to free us from the dictatorship that are workplaces.

{if human beings were not “required” to do something, they would just sit around, be lazy, and do nothing. This is absurd propaganda.

The notion of “leisure” is a monetary invention, created because of the oppressive, fascist basis of the employment institution itself. Laziness is, in fact, a form of rejection of the system.}

Once again we are on the same page here productivity does not need to be synonymous with being a wage slave. One can be just as productive painting, or creating philosophy just because a persons labor does not generate excess exploitable value i.e. profits doesn’t make them unproductive.

{In a true society, there would be no such thing as the separation of “work and “leisure”, for humans should be allowed to pursue whatever they feel is relevant.}

Which goes to that old saying of doing what you enjoy doing. If you enjoy your job then its not really work now is it? In an ideal society everyone could have a chance to learn advanced sciences. Not just in a boring lecture with books and memorization either. The world would be the classroom and everyone could learn on the job as an apprentice to whatever it is they liked. Practical learning through application coupled with centers of Socratic Learning where critical thought and analysis is how students learn.

{To put it a different way, consider the curiosity and interest of a child. He or she doesn’t even know what money is…Do they need to be motivated by money to go out and explore/create? No. They have a personal interest and they pursue it without reward.}

Exactly this underlines the most basic point of all which is “The Motor Force of History is Curiosity” or simply put the pursuit of knowledge drives human society forward. Which means humans are not driven to develop because of the need to produce more material things but rather because they are curious and want more time to nurture that curiosity. Productive forces are only developed to get the basic needs out of the way and create more time to explore and create. The Ideal society nurtures curiosity and creativity and develops the individual into a more enlightened person through natural means such as Meditation rather then through genetic manipulation or something equally unnatural. Of course this isn’t to say genetic engineering shouldn’t be used to eradicate disease, rather whats being said is that technology goes to far when it tries to make test tube babes that are superior to humans made the natural way. Further it would be going too far to create cybernated nurseries as Jacques Fresco has suggested in his book “Looking Forward” . Even though no one would be forced to give up reproducing the natural way you’d still have a new caste system of Meta Humans at the top and Natural Born Humans as second class citizens. Such a system would have a new social division not based on the divisions of the past which were monetary or hereditary based. It would now be on the basis of genetic coding and who has superior code genetic discrimination would tear the society apart.

{In fact, the greatest contributors to our society, such as Einstein, Newton or Galileo, pursued what they did without any regard to money. They did it because they wanted to. The act of doing and contributing was their reward.}

Its funny you should mention Einstein and Newton especially since both of them had what you might call mystical leanings. Albert Einstein we discussed earlier in this document, so we’ll just talk about Sir Isaac Newton. Newton was an Alchemist, which is basically a Scientist who uses The Ancient Scientific Method aka Einstein Method. Both him and Einstein made the contributions they did because they were skeptical of the material world and saw no reason to be attached to Materialist Conceptions such as Money, which is the most vulgar of all Materialist notions. Of course The Modern Scientific Method as you Dogmatically apply it is another form of Materialism its just not as vulgar as Monetarism is.

{if one steps back far enough, it becomes clear that Technological development is the most important institution we have and the pursuit of socially helpful technology(not weapons) should be the highest priority of the culture.}

Of course Technological development goes all the way back to The Greeks and Chinese. As far as weapons are concerned many of them were never intended to be used as such. The first weapons axes were used to gather fire wood to keep warm, it was quickly discovered that those same tools could be used in hunting and self defense. Spears was another weapon developed and used by early humans to hunt just like the bow and arrow. Each one of these was a tool at first and then later a weapon. Even swords could be used to hunt even if thats not the reason for their development. Its only in the hands of those with power that they become weapons of warfare. Even the Chinese who invented gun powder didn’t create it as a weapon at first.

Guns which were developed as weapons, yet Guns can also be used for hunting which means they could have just easily been developed for hunting. Again we see that not all weapons are simply weapons some are also tools. Now cannons we can obviously agree that such a weapon has no practical or socially beneficial use value. You can’t even argue that a cannon is for self defense its nothing but a weapon of war same thing as Nuclear Arms again these have no social use value unless converted into power plants. In the future laser guns could still have use value even though in the wrong hands they could be weapons of war. In the right hands they would make excavations, quarrying, and many other jobs all that much easier.

{what the public fails to understand is that science is not just a tool… it is a near universal functionality which can be applied to society in ways many would not think about.}

Here’s a perfect example of where you get Dogmatic with The Modern Scientific Method. If Dogma like this is going to be the basis of your movement how can you ever expect to create an ideal society. Its almost as if your trying to create a Scientific Materialist Theocracy.

{It seems obvious that technology improves our lives and serves as the greatest liberator of human life in the material realm… so why aren’t its methods applied to society as a whole?}

Well Scientific Materialism is not the basis of society as a whole at the moment Religious Materialist still control many aspects of society. So at the moment it seems Religious Materialists control the past and Scientific Materialists are striving to control the future. I’m sure a good religious slogan for your new Dogma of Scientific Materialism could be something like “Science Be Praised!” or “Praise Almighty Science!” or even “Science is great!”. All of those could be useful in building a religion around Scientific Materialism.

{Obviously, the scientific method is used constantly for isolated systems, but it has never been truly considered in the broadest ways. This is largely due to age old superstitions which battle the logic of science in favor of a dogmatic, outdated and highly romanticized world view.}

Likewise The Einstein Method aka Ancient Scientific Method has never been considered in the broadest ways either. This is largely due to 2000 year old Religious Materialism and 200 year old Scientific Materialism both are of course forms of Materialist philosophy and notions.

{Obviously, we cannot build a society from scratch but the point is clear. It is time we stop thinking about monetary concerns and limitations, and begin to think about the possibilities we have here on earth in the broadest sense.

It is this interest that has created the concept of a ‘Resource Based Economy’.}

No we cannot build a new society from scratch we must utilize the resources we have. Again it is true that we must move beyond monetary concerns and limitations. However what your claiming here is that Resource Based Economics emerged from Scientific Materialism and that it is attached to Scientific Materialism at the hip. The fact of the matter is that Resource Based Economics is an extension or school of Natural Resource Economics. Nowhere do you mention that its derived from Natural Resource Economics you claim Jacques Fresco invented it out of thin air one day. Which is really on par with the fact that Al Gore invented the Internet both claims are equally absurd.

{The Venus project has been working on this concept for a long time and its foundation is very simple.}

Yes they have been however The Resource Based Economy itself is only one component of the ideology of The Venus Project.
{We survey, preserve and maximize our use of planetary resources in conjunction with open information and technological development.}
Which on the surface is good its just the technological part that your not fully explaining. Sure machines can crunch numbers for us on resources and monitor them as well. However they don’t need to be artificially intelligent or left to make complex decisions regarding resources. Rather their should always be humans involved in decision making regarding the resources not a cybernated mechanical bureaucracy.
{In this view, little is left to subjective interpretation, for it is a scientifically derived strategy for social construction at the very core.}
It would be more accurate to say that yours which is Venus Projects interpretation of it is based on Scientific Materialism. What The Venus Project ends up with is a model for a Resource Based Economy that has been merged with a Mechnocracy. A system in which everyone is eventually submitted to a Cybernated Bureaucracy. Sure states that are human run would disappear but in their place your talking about creating self aware machines that learn and adapt to take their place. Further your saying these machines will be in charge of selecting teams to maintain and repair them. First off who in the world elected the Cybernated Bureaucracy as Dictators for life? Its not machines were against here its Artificial Intelligence thats the problem. We don’t need machines to think for us or make decisions for us I don’t care if they count calories for me, or crunch any other numbers for us as a society. But its a very slippery slope to say that governments won’t be needed when in truth your creating a new type of government a MECHNOCRACY. The Resource Based Economy itself is a great idea the native Americans had this type of Natural Resource Economy and many other tribal and ancient societies had variations of Natural Resource Economies. The Sioux people’s had a Confederated System meshed with a Resource Based Economic system. The Ancient Jomon people’s of Japan had a Resource Based Economy that was meshed with a Mageocracy or enlightened rule by a council of mystics. Both were systems based on Management and distribution of resources as common heritage of the people. Of course Marxists would try to claim those societies as ancient Communism but none of them were Monetary based. They did require a system of trade and exchange within the Confederation or Mageocracy’s region. Nowadays however machines can of course crunch numbers for us and things can be automatically exchanged for other things in other regions. Its fine to automate the trade aspects required to run a Resource Based Economy. The problem however is total Cybernation of the state aka your Cybernated Mechnocracy only differs from Technocracy in the sense that Cybernated Systems are put in place of The Human Bureaucracy existing in a Technocracy. It seems when Mr. Fresco had his schism with The Technocrats he completely flew to the other extreme of Technocracy and declared Mechnocracy as his alternative. Quite frankly The Venus Project should call their system what it really is MECHNOCRACY!
Fortunately we don’t go to the extremes The Venus Project goes to. Our Resource Based Economy is not meshed with Mechnocracy. Our’s is based upon a Direct Proportional Democracy and not like this false 2 party system we have in America or the Bourgeois Parliamentary Democracy of Europe. Rather ours is quite simply based on the model of a Consumer Cooperative. The economy itself is broken into 3 facets; Resource Management, Manufacturing, and Distribution I’m sure we can both agree these are the three aspects of any economy. In the Venus Project model of course some how Resource Management Centers, Manufacturing Centers, and Distribution Centers emerge. Some how of course being the key word and cybernation would randomly select people to maintain and repair the machinery at each center. Ok that part is clear but there’s no exact plan of transition we on the other hand have one. First off the people should elect Technical Teams to setup each of the 3 centers. A Resource Management Team to go out and audit resources and figure out what sort of machinery needs to be created, a Manufacturing team to setup manufacturing centers, and a Distribution team to figure out how to get resources distributed. The reason is that if these centers are built on the basis of people and real Democratic principles, this would effectively keep a Cybernated Bureaucracy from emerging. A Cybernated Bureaucracy would further develop an absolute Carceral State.
Of course always having people in charge of the machines to fall back on would be important in case for whatever reason power grids go down or technology fails. Or heck even some sort of terrorist decides to launch an EMP attack on your cybernated systems. I mean lets face it at first there is going to be many people who won’t like the change and will resort to individual acts of terrorism. Its bound to happen when society is first transitioning and self defense militia units will need to be there to provide security for the community. Of course never should we yield unchecked defensive powers to a central authority whether it be a Cybernated one or a human one. Whats more is that if the system itself is backed by trained, elected, technical experts you have something you can always fall back on no matter what happens. Nothing we can build even at 100% efficiency is going to be indestructible because no mass of constance lasts forever it all eventually becomes energy once again. Degradation is a natural part of all things that have form in the physical universe. Direct Proportional Democracy comes into play because its the best and most effective way to control production. We should never fully Cybernate systems because then we have machines making decisions for us. We should also never take the power to elect our Technical Experts out of the hands of people because then you’ve effectively made Machines the cybernated dictators of a new Carceral Orwellian State.
So in conclusion yes we need a Resource Based Economy but not The Mechnocratic one The Venus Project proposes. What we need is The Directivist Model of a Resource Based Economy as put forward by The Promethean Workers Association (PWA). We empower people for a New Age of Aquarius away from the old Piscean Age based on Religious and Scientific Materialist Dogma’s which have led the people of this current aeon astray. Further we intend to resist vehemently and militantly any form of Religious or Scientific Materialism which tries to take hold of society by whatever means necessary to do so. Right now it is Religious Materialists who still hold society hostage but if it ever shifts to Scientific Materialists we intend to resist equally as vehemently. Further its not that we are against change either we want to end the monetary system as well we just don’t want a Mechnocracy is all.
{When we think of sustainability, often we think of durability, longevity and environmental respect. In general, a sustainable practice is a practice that takes the health of the future into consideration. However, this idea isn’t just reserved for the physical, material world- it also applies to thought, belief, human conduct and society as a whole.}

I think this is probably the one and only place anyone’s ever going to hear you admit there’s something beyond the physical and material world.
{An unsustainable practice is one that has an unbalanced negative effect, which, through time, will adversely effect a person, society and/or the environment.}

Sorta like Scientific Materialism it has a long term negative effect in that It makes consciousness enslaved too an absolutist view of physicality. Scientific Materialism is just another poisonous dogma being spoon fed to the populous.

{Any practice that causes an irreversible resource depletion or long term environmental pollution is an unsustainable practice.}

Of course but also Scientific Materialism causes long term damage to consciousness and by its very practice and application is an unsustainable practice as well.
{Given our current system of profit, most everything that is produced is done so with a built in weakness, due to the need to compete for market share.}

Of course I have a radio from the 80’s basic cassette deck type system and compared to a new electronic 3 disc CD changer well lets just say my radio from the 80’s with its single tape deck has lasted much longer. We can produce efficiency yet we don’t and this is alarming indeed.

{This is, of course, unsustainable by definition, for the inherent inefficiency of the economic system eventually creates unnecessary multiplicities, waste and pollution.}
Of course and on these points and others like it we are in total agreement with you.

{And this leads us to unsustainable ideologies.}

What about Unsustainable and unbalanced dogma’s such as Scientific Materialism and Religious Materialism which create people ignorant of higher forms of consciousness within themselves?

{In a Profit System, there is no reward for sustainability, for the system is built upon competition and regeneration. In such a circumstance, sustainability is always second to profit, for the survival of a company is based on profit, and profit is partly based on reducing costs and expanding income.}

In fact at one point it was impossible to create profits through production of domestic goods because there was not enough consumers to purchase those products. This happened once upon a time when Rome’s domestic technologies had reached a level that was pre-industrial something close to the 1600’s or 1500’s level of technology. Of course there was just one problem, most labor was carried out by slaves who produced far more then there was consumers to buy or use the services. More and more aspects of Roman services were becoming privatized and privately owned by Roman Merchant Corpus or Corporations. In the Roman 2 party political system both political parties The Populares and The Optimates worked together to pass laws to benefits the bankers and corporations. Very similar to how nowadays Democrats and Republicans in America do the same thing. Fact was early corporations saw more profit in using religion to outlaw domestic technology label it heretical and then focus all their efforts towards developing weapons. During the Dark Ages domestic technologies fell backwards by centuries while weapons for warfare continued developing to the level of guns and cannons. History has shown this scenario in play before and since we know history repeats itself we know for a fact domestic technology will once again start sinking while all efforts are diverted and focused towards military development. Now all thats missing is a new type of Fascism to rear its ugly head.

{In theory, most would agree that having an abundance of resources, along with products that are made of the most endurable materials for maximum sustainability and efficiency, is a good thing. However, these notions are not rewarded in our current world monetary system. What is rewarded is Scarcity. Scarcity and planned obsolescence are rewarded in the short term, for it creates a ‘turnover’ of profit, while also making more jobs. Sadly, this ‘short term reward’ is at the cost of ‘long term destruction’.}

Of course such is the nature of the monetary and profit systems again we agree 100% with this point as well.

{So then, what is an sustainable ideology?
While this question will always bring new answers as human evolution continues, in the present day we have a concept called The Scientific Method.}

You mean Scientific Materialism because this method is only Scientific in terms of Materialism its not scientific on any other level beyond that. It can’t even be used to prove the Material world is absolutely here beyond a reasonable doubt.

{Very simply, the Scientific Method is a process of investigation }

Perhaps you could try rewording that as Investigative Materialism?

{An example would be a problem with a car. If your car doesn’t start, you would begin a train of thought, based on logic,}

Here’s where you really get absurd actually your intuition would kick in because your first experiencing phenomenon. So you’d experience the phenomenon, rationalize it, Understand it, then reach a conclusion something like “gosh I better check under my hood” then you’d apply the observable method. The way you were explaining it just now skipped completely over the intuitive process perhaps you didn’t consciously realize the Einstein Method would assist you better in the car situation.

{A quick glance at the modes of operation used in the world today reflect a gross negligence of reason, logic and scientific application.}

True right up until you said Scientific application you should have said what you really meant to say with is Scientific Materialism as applied dogma and mass opium.

{Therefore, we need to begin an approach which maximizes education, technology and resource management.

Until this is done, sustainability will be in jeopardy.}

Yes and the sort of education we need is one that teaches individuals to master themselves and their minds. One that teaches people how to find insights within themselves that allow them to be open to other alternative systems then the Economic Materialism characteristic of all monetary based economies. In closing we agree on economic principles but it is ideologies and Scientific Materialism we disagree on. Only an ideology with a more Secular Metaphysical Agnostic and Skeptical Approach can ever be a progressive ideology. An ideology based on Scientific Materialist Absolutism which pigeon holes all Spiritualism in an ignorant manner is going to nowhere fast. If it does however it will create a new type of ignorance in society and impose through social psychological means Scientific Materialism as the new Dogmatic bible. In your movement it seems everything is up for discussion and review except what you call The Scientific Method. If your movement was based on a Resource Based Economy coupled with true Democracy not Cybernated Bureaucracy and The Einstein Method over your Scientific Method well then it would make sense. In closing we do look eagerly forward to your reply.

-Promethean Workers Association (PWA)