The Core Issues:
I would argue that our primary cause for inaction by the activists and action-takers among us, is that we do not agree on the core problems that face our society and don't collectively understand the driving force behind them. The "system" currently in place is as pervasive as it is effective in controlling populations, spreading propaganda, and ensuring the system Owner's supremacy. Their system is powerfully persuasive to the masses and not one to be taken lightly. The only way effectively combat this system is to introduce an equal or more efficient system of economy, resource sharing, freedom, and security allowed by sufficient participation. Simple "off-grid" survival just will not work in the long term.
We live in a world that has been largely shaped by two primary factors that have directed the course of trade, economics, and politics over the last several thousand years. Those are credit based Capitalism, and Psychopathy. Capitalism is the economic model that puts the idea of capital as the primary motivation and resource for trade and the distribution of resources. Capitalism in a broad sense is the private necessity for capital gains over the advancement of industry or the human species.
Psychopathy, is a genetic deviation in humans that exists in somewhere between 3% and 6% of the human population according to research from psychologists like Robert Hare and Andrew Lobaczweski. Psychopaths are different from birth and are considered by researchers as literal "inter-species predators". The majority of psychopaths are born into lower classes and wind up in gangs or jail for petty crimes. Others are born into money or families with high political influence and can wind up making decisions that instigate genocide or erode countries from the inside out.
The Economic Solution:
Capitalism is commonly polarized against Socialism as the two economic systems competing for power against one another. This generalization has been largely true and to date a third, competing system, has not been successfully realized; however, we are at a turning point technologically where a third option may be realistic. Historically, the best cases where communism prevailed in a society, such as the jewish kibbutz, it too gradually evolved into capitalism as the people started to want more personal gain and expanded trade. The same could also be seen in Russia and England during the 1970's through early 1990's. A regression into communism would be literally "going backwards". Instead, a natural transition must be made from capitalism to a resource sharing based economy in a similar way that capitalism could evolve from socialism.
As we continue to automate more and more aspects of life, we find ourselves in a paradox. Hypotheticaly, If we could build a machine that could create organic, tasty hamburgers, of any shape or size, nearly instantly, for a fraction of the cost, it could very well put many restaurants out of business. If that machine could produce food of any sort for a fraction of the cost and this machine could fit in your living room, it would nearly eliminate the restaurant industry. The fact is that in the next 6 years, 3D printer technology could easily print organic beef or other foods very inexpensively. No animals have to die, no one would lose...except the people whose jobs depend on it. Further, clothing, housing, and material goods can also be printed at a fraction of the cost; digital goods go without saying. This is an inevitability of technological progress and is the very crux of the issue: it's not the resources that we need, it's the "paycheck".
The solution is an Economic Democracy. This works by subsidizing resources so the people get paid the same amount of credit (money), but are not required to produce the same quantity of goods or services. In a capitalistic society, we are forced to continue to produce goods and services at an exponential rate, or else the economy will crumble. This leads to problems like planned obsolescence. In an economic democracy, if we introduced a mechanism to reduce the cost of healthcare across the board by 10%, everyone could benefit by reducing the hours in a work week from 40 hours to 39 hours a week, but still get paid the same.
The difference in pay would be subsidized by the central body responsible for handling the money system, which is handled as a public service (no interest). This inherently drives people to look for ways to automate and improve systems, instead of ways to create more "stuff". The same could be translated into all businesses.
On a fundamental level, everyone in this system would own a percentage (stock) of each company, that percentage being divided by the population. When a business does well, everyone succeeds. When one fails, the damage is absorbed by the population. By incentivizing automation through "fewer working hours" instead of "more capital", we would have a system that rewards us for building, innovating, and sharing resources, instead of fiercely protecting them.
The Psychopathic Solution:
It is no secret now that genetic psychopaths have a firm grip of control over every aspect of politics, business, finance, and industry. The capitalistic system in place rewards those with psychopathic behaviours. People who are likely to stab someone in the back, lie to get ahead, or cheat the system for a personal advantage have a distinct advantage in our society over those who cannot or will not. Worse, otherwise good people will begin to emulate the behaviours of psychopaths in order to get ahead and stay competitive. This is called "trickle-down evil" and creates sociopaths. While the economic system described above would largely eliminate the system that has allowed psychopaths to thrive and succeed, if psychopathy is still present they will find a way to poison any system introduced and we will be back where we started.
Psychopaths are extremely manipulative, have no conscience, are pathological liars, and can show no real love or compassion to anyone. Psychopaths have been studied extensively and we can conclusively test for psychopathy at birth. The factors listed above alone would suggest that genetic screening could be adopted without a public backlash. A gene could be introduced in utero that would eliminate genetic psychopathy from birth, with no harm otherwise done to the fetus. No parent with any conscience would want their children to be born with a incurable condition that would actively destroy the lives of everyone around them forever. There is no alternative. Psychopathy is a destructive force with no equal in society and it must be stopped from birth.
The system described above requires a greater clarity that is beyond my word-count limitations for the purpose of this article, however my aim is to provide some clarity into the core problems we face and some realistic solutions for them. When dealing with industry or economic revolution of any sort, we don't need a mass population "buy-in", only about 5% of the population could produce and create a working model of efficiency for such a system to thrive. There is no avoiding the dangers of meandering in the murky waters of post-industrial capitalism. The future can be brighter than ever if we are willing to let our technology evolve our way of thinking.
This article has been entered into the Activist Post Writing Contest - Solutions. 1st place receives a $250 cash prize & $250 gift certificate to Offgrid Outpost. 2nd place receives a $250 gift certificate to Offgrid Outpost. Additional details and submission guidelines can be found here: http://www.activistpost.com/2012/11/activist-post-writing-contest.html
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