It would make no sense to criticize one's complete "enemies", as who would be interested ? It can only make sense to explain what is wrong in a position where there is something true, to show that its truths that would attract some people sensitive to these truth, do not imply the truth of the other claims, and that another view is possible. It would be hopeless to try making useful allies out of radical enemies, as the explaining work would be too heavy, and with no hope to succeed, as the people will go away too early anyway.
So I agree with the following of their claims:
The economic and political system we live in is deeply flawed, and the world is going very bad because of this (rather than from the human nature, while there are some problems there but we cannot change it anyway so we need to focus on other aspects). A radically new system is needed. For this new system, a scientific design is needed. Why few people had in mind to use scientific methods to redesign the political and economic system, is just because this was never tried yet. And this new scientifically designed system, would work using new software on the internet.
Okay, but apart from this, I disagree with almost all of their
Are you for or against Santa Claus ?
There is nothing good at all in their movement. Of course they
have the best intentions, but no clue on how to do anything good
I'm not afraid of any change, and I indeed want the world to change for the collective good.
But I am against waste and bullshit, and I don't like to see thousands of people waste their energy for an absurd ideology that cannot bring any effective good to mankind. It's not a matter of being for or against a goal, since we all have somehow the same goal: the common good. The disagreement is about beliefs on which method can indeed help to this goal. And as we agree that the best method is the scientific one, the disagreement is about which views/methods really are scientific, and which are not. And this is the huge disagreement, by which our ways are, finally, totally opposed to each other. (They might be surprised by this claim, thinking that they only expressed their desire to follow scientific ways and thus did not have the chance yet to reject one yet, however in fact their doctrine is already full of irrational, unjustified and wrong claims - see below)
This should not matter, as only the core of the arguments should
matter, but for the few whose problem would be their desire to
invent something else about who I am, you can see my presentation video here.
A few more details not developed in that video:
There were periods when I got interested in the phenomenon of pseudo-science and crackpots, that is people seeing themselves as geniuses discovering new theories or refuting established theories (such as the Relativity theory or the quantum theory for their paradoxes which they cannot accept, as if it was a pleasure for scientists to accept paradoxical results without careful checking), in paranoid ways, pretending to criticize a knowledge which they in fact do not understand. They may have made some understanding efforts, and even been "good at school", ignoring that, in fact, the true content of established scientific knowledge is much bigger and deeper than what school can reflect. I am not dogmatically supporting any "official view", the "establishment" against poor marginal challengers ; I am not working for any administration or company, and I dislike the current institutions and world order in many ways. I am totally free-thinker, I reject any political correctness and widespread assumptions and I care to check every idea in details. Even if some teaching from any social group roughly seems true, I still don't accept it without dissecting it into hundreds of elementary conceptual pieces and checking each piece one by one, then rebuilding my own view out of only and exactly those logical pieces that proved true while rejecting others (unless, of course, I have good reasons to trust others, especially the scientific conclusions in fields others than my own such as climatology). If I support the free market principles, this is purely motivated by logic and mathematical elegance, not by any sort of greed or self-interest, nor any social trust or conditioning. While I happen to agree with libertarians on many issues, this does not come from their influence, and I also strongly disagree with their usual views on other issues, such as their conception of a free monetary system, their climate-skepticism, and their general disdain towards ecological issues. I do support green taxes, while they would reject me as a "statist" for this.
explained there, I found in different ways that, in many
cases, bullshit can be much better at convincing the ignorant
public of its scientificity, than genunine science is. Because for
this, the bullshit only has to adapt to one requirement : to seem
scientific in the eyes of the ignorant. They are free to tell any
bullshit that can serve this purpose. While those who try to say
the truth, have another requirement to follow : that of sticking
to the scientific truth. Which can be a serious handicap in their
attempts to give stupid people the best impression that it is what
they are doing.
So, at the stupid game of trying to seem the most rational and scientific in the eyes of the mindless ignorant public, the bullshit propagandists are often much better players with better chances to win, than real scientists. Because it is in the nature of the public to rather believe bullshit than truly rational claims ; and of course, to call "scientific" what they believe in. As it has been since millenia, which is why the world was dominated by religions, while science was only recently "discovered" by a tiny minority, that remains poorly understood by the many.
Despite of all this, when trying to express my views (somewhere
in French) the Zeitgeist supporter who answered, still found
a way to dismiss my arguments by treating me as a mentally ill
person, not taking me seriously (probably that my position is just
so far from his which he assumes so confidently to be the obvious
truth, that it is natural for him to dismiss it as an expression
of mental illness). He "justified" his accusation by telling how
he thought I made a stupid error when comparing the Zeitgeist
movement with Marxism, which he sees as absolutely incomparable
with Zeitgeist. Sorry, they are extremely similar, this is a fact.
The only difference is that the Zeitgeist supporters now see
Marxism "from the outside" (with historical perspective on the
real effects, ignoring the doctrinal content), while they see
their own view "from the inside" (doctrinal content only). So they
are the same, with the same discrepancy (fooling power) between
how they taste from inside and what they objectively are. So he
was the one doing a stupid error in the way he claimed to see a
Well I don't worry as I'm not the only one to be treated as "mentally ill" by the Zeitgeist movement for presenting arguments against their views which they cannot answer. But, what about the overwhelming majority of people who were convinced after debate that my project is the right one ? Are they mentally ill too ? Well, treating the large number of those who disagree (when they cannot be accused of greed or of being manipulated by the current powers) as "mentally ill" is an important similarity with the Soviet Union, isn't it ???
Because the Zeitgeist movement is just a religion among others.
It is no more different from other religions, than the different
other religions are different from each other. It is especially
extremely similar to the religion of Marxism,
and only stupidly ignores the comparison. Its claim to support the
scientific method, is just as meaningless as many other
religions'claim that they are scientific, or that their truth or
divine origin is proven by science. Its claims are exactly no
different from religious faith, in the following sense:
What is the difference between faith and reason ?
The difference between faith and reason, is that
They make a lot of bold claims but give no rational
justifications for them. I mean, no genuinely rational
justifications, in the true sense of "rational", that is, accurate
and careful enough to avoid any risk of radical, terrible
mistakes. They have their "arguments" of course, but these are
much too fuzzy and uncareful to have any rational value.
For example, they don't make any serious analysis of the causes
of problems, but make a big fuzzy pack of all of them and
attribute them to the big unanalyzed thing that roughly seems the
main way things currently go on: "free market" which they claim to
be the cause of problems. They are blind to the way in which free
market indeed remarkably succeeded to provide prosperity in the
world, since, of course, there are some remaining big problems
worth complaining of. So they focus on the fact not all things
work and decide that we must get rid of everything how things now
They don't understand that the problems don't mainly come from any sort of big bad wolf (either personal or impersonal) that would just need to be killed, but from the lack of good structures. That problems often come from the consequences of partial solutions which have gaps, and that the bad effects often reflect real problems that are not resolved by these partial solutions but go out as visible troubles through these gaps, and need to be positively addressed; and that just destroying the partial solutions (free market mechanisms) whose gaps have let these troubles appear, would not help to resolve the source of the problems which often come from real technical difficulties in how to organize real economic activity no matter the political, conventional system.
For example here is my rational
argumentation why some sort of money and free market is a
necessary aspect of any working economic system.
See also : about the invisible hand
I challenge those who dream of abolishing money, to understand
this argument and try to provide any genuine argument on their
side that can stand the debate.
Why bother criticizing the Zeitgeist Movement ? For several years
I did not consider it worth wasting my time doing so much honor to
these idiots of the Venus project, so as dedicate any time caring
for their nonsense, while I had so much more important and
meaningful thoughts to develop, in mathematics, philosophy, and the
design of my own solution to
the world's problems.
Indeed, I thought, a person is either an idiot or not, and if someone is stupid enough to take this Venus nonsense seriously, then he is hopelessly unable to do any right work for a better world anyway, so he isn't worth my time caring to teach him how much is 2+2 and why the Venus propaganda is wrong....
And I saw no point in caring for what the large masses of idiots think, because, indeed, anyway, it does not really matter what they think, since anyway their action is hopelessly sterile no matter what one may try to do about it.
While, to develop the true solution to many the world's problem, there is no need to convince large numbers of idiots. Instead, just the work of a few serious people would suffice, in the form of the development of a new free software for web servers.
Also another reason to not waste time criticizing them, is that
their errors are obvious and many other people surely already
pointed them out.
So, of 2 things one: either they are ready to read and understand criticism, and thus change their mind because the criticism against them is valid, or they aren't. In any case, since valid criticism must exist, and must already have convinced any sane people, I see no reason why my own addition would add anything.
But, while genuine criticism exists, the Venus fools still
believe it does not exist, because when they see it they
systematically censor it away from their attention, pretending
that it is not genuine argument but only "insults", things
"offensive", "irrelevant", "misrepresenting" their views, and so
Indeed looking at the Wikipedia article on their movement, I indeed see a section "criticism" but it hardly contains anything significant (for example it proudly links to an article that cannot be read without paying, well at least it's a chance that the Zeitgeist movement departed from the Venus copyrighters). Indeed, the Venus zealots are so much motivated that they regularly censor away and mock any criticism that it addressed to them, and since Wikipedia is just like the streets, a space where those who are the maniest and cry the loudest are right (who edit articles more often - like democracy, a law of the stupidest where the stupidest are right because they are the maniest and cry the loudest), there is no chance to see any significant objective view and criticism there. It is necessary to explore the abundant history of the article in order to find attempts at expressing criticism. For example in this old version there was a link to this criticism, which was then censored in later versions. It's a pity I have no time to dedicate on searching for all the genuine criticism that has been similarly added at some time to the article and then censored away.
Other criticism directly found by google from different sources
So, I hardly see any sense in bothering to criticize what is
obviously ridiculous nonsense.
However, since then, time passed, and the most absurd,
unexpectable, unthinkable situation turned out to the be, in fact,
the most massive reality and the biggest problem of the world :
That, while the solution that I have found to the world's
problems, whenever I have the chance to explain and debate it
in a room of rational people (usually economics students), usually
all of them go out convinced that this is the solution, and
many even said they are proud to have met me (and this indeed
happened with thousands of people that went out convinced in this
way)... finally none of them ever did anything about it,
so that finally, no matter that I have all the arguments and my
project is the best and is relatively very easy to implement, and
my arguments could convince nearly everybody, I finally remain
nobody, with no reputation at all, with nobody to help me,
while the help of just a few people would have
sufficed to change the world. Instead, they are many
thousands of people who support the Venus project, so that this
project is now largely more "notable" than mine. Not that they
have any project at all (in fact they don't have any project
except trying to reach their mythical "critical mass", the hell
knows for what) nor any convincing argument on their side.
No. They are much more "notable" and "popular" just because when one of them tries spread his nonsense to 100 other people, he is not convincing... to anybody except to one idiot... but that will be an activist too and will keep spreading the message to 200 other people.
Or, maybe they are very much "convincing", but only insofar as they are much too vague, only telling empty dreams about a faraway future, to let anyone have something to say against it.
Alas, it's an incredible but sad and real fact, that in the world there are mainly 2 kinds of people: there are those who are able to think, and there are those motivated by good intentions. So that those who could be able to understand the truth, do not care nor do anything about it, while those with "good intentions", the activists who spread ideas, only want to spread bullshit and reject the truth.
Stupidities are much more popular than intelligent solutions, for
the following reason - beyond the mere fact that most people are
stupid and want to believe this is good for judging things, yeah.
Spreading stupidities is easy : you just need to repeat a slogan. But spreading intelligent ideas is much harder as you cannot catch someone's attention with something that requires him to learn some new concepts for 1-2 hours, express his objections (every expression of lack of understanding in front of the presentation of each component of a big system that requires to understand a lot of things about its many components for the whole of it to properly work as needed) and have the author/presenter respond to each objection one by one... in order to finally discover how convincing it feels. Usually everybody only gives a few minutes to look at a proposition before judging it.
If only this was not exactly the case, if only a few more people
with both sane thinking and good motivations existed, then the
world would be going so much better ! and many problems would be
Sad truth. What can I do ? I don't know. Just desperately try to report the situation. I have no solution to this problem.
So, they have thousands and thousands of activists on their side
- from this article, in 2009 “We already have a quarter-million
members,”. But all happens as if they did not want the world
to change. To change the world would be easy : just give me
0.004% of their followers to work on my project (assuming they are
250,000, this would be 10 of them - or even, just a half of this -
hmm except that, of course I don't need idiots but intelligent
people to do serious work, and I'm afraid this may be absent from
their group), and the global revolution solving much of the wold's
problems will follow.
(But such a calculation might be vain, as it might just be a ridiculously hopeless dream to expect any one of these "scientific method" fanatics to ever give respect and a voice to genuine reason).
Instead of this, they prefer dedicating their life to pose as
martyrs and pretend that all problems come from the fact that not
more people follow them. Do they have a sense of efficiency ? of
intelligence ? it seems not. They are very many. And they have
been even more one century ago. They were called Marxists. They
were the dominant voice worldwide. Not only in the Soviet Union
but also in large parts of Western Europe (particularly France
where I lived). But they keep posing as martyrs, proud of
challenging the "dominant" economic view. Well, if the free market
is popular, isn't it by the force of necessity, because history
selected it as the only working system under hand ? just by the
force of facts and pragmatism while it has not much been so
popular as an ideology, while it is in fact their socialist and
anti-monetary ideas that were the dominating ideological orthodoxy
in many places... where they thought their idiocies were the
unquestionable truth because they had not actual responders but
only the mute and impersonal force of facts to contradict them.
So, not only they have no sense of logic (as their ideology isn't logical) but no sense of pragmatism either, since the implementation has already been tried (with the Soviet union)... as some say "Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results". Which of course they will dismiss by pretending that their solution has never been tried (just like Marxists tried to do when questioned during the fall of the Soviet Union : that it was not the "true" communism). Although they are thousands and nothing technically prevents them from all gathering in one place and trying to experiment their "solution" to see if it works, they still pose as victims and passively remain mindless followers blaming the rest of people for their own inability to implement their mythical "solution".
Long analysis of many points would be needed... I will try to do
I first had a look on the Venus Project a few years ago. In its
web site, I followed what was put forward as a presentation of
this project : it was presented in the form of videos.
So I looked at the video. The video was showing a vision of futurist buildings and towns building themselves like toys, defying the laws of gravity.
So what do I think about it ? I think that, since Jesus multiplied breads, walked on the water, and healed the paralyzed by telling him "Get up and walk", there is hardly anything new here.
See the above link to the INTP forum where someone commented on the Venus project = the very definition of absolute dictatorship, with no place for freedom, and no reason at all to expect that such a system wouldn't immediately turn into the wrong hands that will massively exploit the world for their own profit.
What an irony to see that the biggest and most absolute
conspiracies are those set up by the stupidity of people motivated
by their fear of conspiracies, who insist that they cannot trust
anything because everything around is probably a conspiracy, with
the only exception of this source which makes this warning... but
is actually the one biggest and most ridiculous conspiracy, that
invites people to imagine an "alternative" world free from the
coming new world order (world government) that the big bad wolves
around us are conspiring to set up. And so the "only solution"
they come up with to protect us from this new world and the bad
world government, is more precisely in some shape.... which is in
fact the very exact shape of the most total and absolute world
dictatorship and conspiracy ever (well, the absolute conspiracy
and absolute dictatorship that we absolutely need to follow in
order to protect ourselves from any other real or imaginary risk
of dictatorship and conspiracy, of course). And all these people
didn't notice but they love this...
How can all these people be that stupid ? Really amazing indeed.
This text is very vague and general, with no sufficiently
specific claim for a significant criticism to be possible. Just a
"This "Resource-Based Economic Model" is about taking a direct technical approach to social management as opposed to a Monetary or even Political one. It is about updating the workings of society to the most advanced and proven methods Science has to offer, leaving behind the damaging consequences and limiting inhibitions which are generated by our current system of monetary exchange, profits, corporations and other structural and motivational components."
The problem here is : who can say which methods are
scientifically the most advanced and proven ? While there are
indeed natural ways for many (uh, not all...) other branches of
science to naturally converge to the truth, since their contents
are free to develop by debates of true experts (the few people who
have enough abilities to study the subjects properly as otherwise
they would not even be interested to come there, and who co-opt
their circles of peers with whom discussions can be useful)
without any significant pressures from either the ignorant public
or political/financial powers, these conditions are not met here.
There needs to be a specific meta-mechanism with the virtue to
properly select and spread the methods/rules which are really the
optimal ones from a scientific viewpoint, and naturally eliminate
any attempt at hijacking the whole movement by any class of people
that just wants to abuse a population and use its own set of
rules, by means of propaganda pretending that their solution is
the "scientifically optimal" one, to steal large portions of the
economic resources to its own profit.
Unless of course these methods would be already specified and their virtues clear.
As for my own project, the meta-mechanism so required is clear :
as the solution takes the form of a free software for web servers
working in network with any other independent servers, ifever it
contains anything wrong, anyone will be free to make modifications
and release modified versions, and anyone will be free to use
their preferred version (still able to work in connection with
other versions). This way, it will really be in the hands of the
people (or the logical necessities of some "invisible hand"
of which version of the software will be preferred by users), and
cannot become the tool for a ruling class to exploit the rest of
people; and this makes it not something that will destroy things
or possibilities but will offer additional useful opportunities to
the people. (Sorry that I did not yet write full explanations why
this meta-mechanism will work very well as I think it will... I
have so many other things to write).
And the problem is not only the risk of there big bad wolves that
would want to hijack the movement, but also the natural desire of
the general public to rather believe bullshit that the truth. Even
if nobody wants to make a conspiracy of misleading the people,
there are high risks for the people to mislead themselves.
An advantage with my solution is that even if many people make a
mistake about which version of the software should be used, this
still lets other, wiser people free to use their better version
instead. There needs not be a universal choice of a common system
by everybody. Then different groups of people can experiment the
use of different systems in parallel, and the advantages of the
best will appear by experience, to finally attract the rest of
users to join.
"each Chapter works to not only spread awareness about the roots of our social problems today
This claim relies on the presupposition that they have themselves
the true awareness of the roots of our social problems, contrary
to others.Well but everyone with any opinion, as soon as it is a
definite opinion, thinks that his own position is the true
awareness, doesn't he ? So anyone with a conviction would wish to
spread his "awareness" as well. Among all the people with
different views on what should be the "true awareness", many have
in fact a wrong one, so that if their purpose is really to spread
awareness, the first problem should be to question their own
position and learn other understandings from other sources order
to become truly aware themselves, in order to become later ready
to spread the true awareness rather than the wrong one
(unawareness). But where is their work of self-questioning ? Where
can any hint be found that their analysis of the world's problems
would indeed by any wiser than any other position ? Would their
intelligence level be specially higher than the rest of the
population ? But they only speak about an easy "awareness" that
the whole population should be able of, not any difficult
"understanding" at any level of intelligence needed to be
comparably reliable to scientific discoveries. Without any serious
thinking effort, it is easy to have and spread a feeling for a
viewpoint, but any false view can be spread in this way as well :
without any thinking effort, any view can be presented under the
name of "awareness" with a similarly strong impression of truth in
the eyes of ignorant people, or of people with prejudices to the
same orientation. This is no serious work towards the truth.
Look at history : which ideologies have spread themselves as an "awareness" throughout the population ? Usually, these were religions. Especially, "awareness" is one of the master slogans of Buddhism, which presents the spiritual quest as the quest to become "aware". Uh, aware of what ? Well, just aware of awareness, it seems. Not to become aware of any specific useful truth with any significant effect on how the world goes, but the highest awareness anyway, that is the awareness about awareness itself. Similarly, the Hare krishna movement calls itself "Krishna Conciousness" - something that sounds quite close to an "awareness". Also, Christianity somehow presents itself as the awareness of the divine revelation, by its call to become "born again", "receive the Holy Spirit", just "accept Jesus in your heart" rather than try to criticize, especially to inspire us and open our eyes for well understanding the Bible, and many things like this. Generally, the idea of "spreading awareness" does not suggest any serious scientific or logical analysis of things, and indeed it does not operate any. But then at this stupid competition of ideologies to best give to themselves the appearance of being the highest "awareness" in the eyes of the public, well, religions and irrational views have much better chances to win than genuine, rational truths.
Did science spread itself to the world as a form of "awareness" ? No. Instead, it developed as an internal debate among the elite of scientists. The founding books of modern science, such as Galileo's defense of heliocentrism, and Darwin's book on the origin of species, were, well, rather hard readings, to the interest of not everybody, but a minority of intellectuals, and were quite more tough than a call for "awareness". It took more than "awareness" to put Christianity into question, but rather tough intellectual works. The possibility to develop long-distance communication through radio waves, did not come as a mission to spread the awareness of the Maxwell's equations. And when scientists must warn us about the effects of global warning and climate change, they publish reports with hundreds of pages full of technical details. Definitely not the kind of sexy thing likely to wake up people and create a global movement. Unfortunately.
So before trying to "spread awareness", a first problem would be
find what the true awareness is. To admit that there is no reason
to assume having the true awareness before a hard research; to
first work to become aware oneself and receive awareness, or
better, scientific understanding, from others, and carefully check
what is true or not, before pretending to be the source of
awareness for the rest of the world. A work of careful logical
analysis and humility that these people in the Zeitgeist movement
seem to be direly lacking.
"but also to express the logical, scientific solutions and methods we have at our disposal to update and correct the current social system and create a truly responsible, sustainable, peaceful, global society. "
Wonderful ! I have similar goals, and, again, I propose such a solution. If they think they found such solutions, let me check this...
"Working through global and regional educational projects and community programs, the intermediate goal is to obtain a worldwide movement"
Yeah, their intermediate goal is to multiply their numbers...
trying to make as many people as they can to believe what they
say, long before there can be any start of a concrete evidence
that it is true. Good luck.
Their purpose, thus, is to try making millions of people believe what they say, without yet any concrete evidence that what they say is true. Because, they think, it is only by having millions believe in it that a "critical mass" can be reached and that then the current world order can be subverted, coming into a new era of some not yet defined "transition period" for an indeterminate time period, that would "aim" to finally lead to something supposed to fit their yet vague description, that nobody can really figure out yet, but it is assumed that, at the end of this transition period, the benefit of it all will finally become real and effective (things will be going so much better) for yet obscure reasons that cannot yet be explained but, assuming that this will conform to some yet undefined "best scientific methods", it will surely be the most wonderful things that man can ever dream of.
While there is no concrete evidence yet... but of course they think they already have sufficient evidence to be confident in their claims so that everyone ought to agree and follow them, but the problem is that others don't agree, not seeing their arguments as valid. Members of the movement see no sense of opposing their goals : how can anyone refuse to apply the best scientific methods ? What they don't get is that others don't refuse the principle of "applying the best scientific methods", they only refuse the specific methods proposed here which they don't see as scientific, since there is no reason to call them such.
Compare this with religions : the purpose of religions is to make
people believe what they say about life after death and the
conditions for "being saved" (reaching heaven), without yet any
concrete evidence. Because, they think, people need to believe and
follow this teaching in order to become able to reach heaven after
death. We have yet no quite detailed idea what heaven will look
like and why this way is the best to reach it, but since this is
assumed to be God's will, it will surely be much better than
anything we can currently imagine. There is no available concrete
evidence for this on the Earth, but they still think that they
have sufficient arguments to be confident in their claims, while
other people disagree. Members see no sense to disagree with them
: how can anyone oppose God's will, or claim to be any wiser than
God ? What they don't get is that opponents don't refuse the
principle of obeying or trusting God, but only refuse to consider
this specific Bible as divinely inspired or reliable history,
since there is no reason to see it so.
My project avoids this trouble by the fact that, once existing as
a software, even when users are still a minority, they can already
effectively experience much of the benefits of the new system,
while it will be working in parallel, without yet any need to
disturb or require anything from the old one.
"essentially unifying the people"
Sorry, this is technically false. By adding one more ideological
movement to the world, they don't unify anything but create one
more division instead. Of course their goal is to "unify all
people"... under their own movement.
You know what ? Every other religion in the world is trying to do exactly the same : to unify all people by gathering them all to one umbrella, one movement.
The problem is, they each have a different solution of which is the creed/movement that should make it.
In other words, one of the big differences between science and religion is this one
"It is the assumption of The Movement that the educational/activist pressure generated, coupled with what is currently a failing social system, will inhibit and override the established political, commercial and nationalist institutions outright, exposing and resolving the flaws inherent."
Yeah it was the assumption of Marxists one century ago too. And
by their educational/activist pressure, coupled with the failing
social system of that time, they indeed succeeded to inhibit and
override the established political, commercial and economic
institutions. We know about the result.
"It is our view that the traditional mediums of politics and commerce as forces for change will not obtain the goals needed to make our social system sustainable and humane for they appear to be born out of the same traditionalist, flawed logic that has created the problems as they stand."
Somehow I agree, but the problem is that this is not an
information. To say that a given way is a wrong one (if indeed it
is so), does not help to find out which way is the right one. So
many possible alternatives may be imagined, depending on which
claims or aspects need to be challenged. To confuse
extravagance with wisdom, ignoring that the fact there is
something wrong in a view does not inform which of the millions of
possible alternatives can be any closer to the truth (as most of
the easily imaginable ones are actually even more wrong), is a
common trap of religions, sects and pseudo-sciences.
"In the view of The Movement, the society today has become increasingly detached from the physical world, with techniques of production, distribution and social ordering that have little to no relationship to the environment, or the current state of scientific knowledge with respect to public health and sustainability."
Of course, as the free market mechanisms have developed in ways
of intensive restructurings of how people work and produce in more
and more productive ways, but environmental issues and genuine
health concerns happened to not properly enter the equation of
free market yet. There is no wonder that these issues have not
benefited any proper optimization yet.
On the other hand, you can stop focusing on what does not work, and start looking at what works : the productivity of work (living standard) has grown by about a factor 10 in the 19th century and again in the 20th century. So, the real, concrete issue of the optimized organization of productive work is indeed achieved (not always properly, but in many ways) by the current system insofar as the parameters of the problem had the chance to enter the equation of free market. In these aspects the current system is indeed rooted in the physical world (the material problem of which working method is the most productive, is rather well treated). It's just a pity that there are some remaining defects (logical insufficiencies) and it is not rooted in all aspects of the physical world, and that some environmental disasters endangering the whole planet are coming through this gap...
But I understand it is a natural temptation to focus on complaining about what does not work, and forget about what works, taking it for granted, as if it was a gift from nature, from the sky, something natural.
The economic growth is not "natural". Look at the countries of the former Soviet Union : by lack of free market mechanisms, and despite all their super central economic plannings by which they eagerly tried to demonstrate the superiority of their intelligence and wisdom how to better organize the productive work (as they did with their space program), the economic growth that seems natural for Westerners, just could not happen there.
"For instance, our use of a profit based, "growth" driven monetary system has become one of the greatest destroyers of the natural world...
For a company, trying to increase profit means (in many cases - I
know there are exceptions that need to be dealt with, but...)
searching for techniques for (the best possible compromises of)
how to produce the highest possible value (goods and services) out
of the lowest amount of resources (work and things to buy). How
can you be against that ? I know, painfully well, that among the
costs counted in the search for profit, the environmental cost is
not properly accounted for. And so I consider it an urgent
necessity for the future of the Earth, to include it there in the
form of important green taxes. But still I keep considering that
the presence of a monetary system is necessary to make all that
work, to force the productive methods to search for the best
compromises between developing wealth, reducing the use of labor,
and reducing the harm to the environment. How else can it be ???
...and sustainable human values.
Please give concrete examples. I cannot answer about problems
that are not precisely and concretely described. But I don't see
what "human values" have to do with the preservation of the
natural world. The more you want to get the sexy feeling of
"caring for human values", preserving human life and giving
comfort all around, the more you must for this exploit the planet
and spend a public money that does not exist by deepening public
deficits and debts, and the more this will jeopardize the heritage
we will leave to future generations, so that such "human values"
are nothing but short-sightedness, cowardice, irresponsibility and
The entire global economy requires "cyclical consumption" to operate, which means that money must constantly be circulating. Thus, new goods and services must be constantly introduced regardless of the state of the environment and actual human necessity. "
There is no such things as an intrinsic necessity of circulation.
Money and goods don't circulate by themselves. They only circulate
when humans use them. Humans use them when they think that they
need it in order to earn what they need for living. Who are you to
tell you that they don't need more than what they think they need
? I agree that some people are somehow crazy, spending more money
than they really need. I don't really understand them, as I happen
to see possible and natural myself to live with a minimum amount
of money, quite less that other people usually earn or spend. When
I see some good chocolate available in the supermarket at discount
price, I don't understand why anyone will keep buying some other
chocolate 2 or 3 times that price. I don't understand how anyone
can be stupid enough to be influenced by advertizing.
And I do find it odd to see the society organized in such a way that it somehow "obliges" people to need and run after lots of money, more than what I personally see as a sufficient amount. Namely, to see all these laws about minimum salaries that makes everyone face a dilemma :
And this obliges to many sacrifices and troubles in order to get that rank.
But anyway I think that, with maybe some exceptions, nobody
should have the right to judge, nor coerce to change, other
people's choices. Because people who make some choices for
themselves may have their own personal reasons/needs that are not
visible to others; and as long as their choice is done in such a
context that it does not harm the interests of others, it usually
has to be tolerated. Because there is no good alternative. Because
any system that would coerce people into following other options
than their personal free choice, would most probably do much more
harm than good:
In my case, as my dream was to become a mathematician and to
develop and share to interested students a new vision of
mathematics and physics, I was "obliged" by all people around, to
follow that stupid academic system and to "ambition" a position of
professor at some teaching institution. Which finally turned out
to be nonsense, since there seems to not exist any teaching
institution that can ever be interested to employ someone to
develop and share a new vision of mathematics and physics.
But I had a sort of choice - with 1 or 2 possibilities, depending on viewpoint. Or maybe none at all. All people around insisted that I must see myself as faced to a dilemma : "all or nothing". Either "I am somebody" with an official job in the eyes of the institutions, for a "correct salary" that is in fact much more than I need, but for this I must kill myself following all its absurd requirements in a race for diplomas, and then dedicate all my life for the service of these institutions, but then never have the opportunity to express my creativity for the common good. Or "I am nobody", with no official salary, but then my works won't be read no matter their value because all students have no time since they must dedicate their life to following the courses of their official teachers in order to succeed their exams... But of course people insist that I must not see the second option as an option at all and I must necessarily give myself to the first option. But this "only" option (from a bureaucratic viewpoint) finally turned out to be humanly impossible, so that real life forces me back to the second option.
So I do see the problem of the foolishness of people who think that everyone must race for a constant circulation. But I fail to see what it has to do with the presence of the money system.
The problem basically comes from the academic institutions and
some crazy bureaucratic ideas in the minds of some parents who
"care for the future" of their children but have been brainwashed
by the academic system into wrong views about it. Not from the
actions of any banks or private companies. And the absurdity of
the job market of university teachers, is purely made-up by
bureaucracy and has nothing to do with any natural defect of money
or free market - since the "purposes" and behaviors of
universities are a pure expression of state bureaucracy with no
trace of any free market logic at all.
As for the outlawing of work under some legal minimum salary, well, this also comes from state bureaucracy and "social protection", not from money and free market themselves.
"This "perpetual" approach has a fatal flaw for resources as we know it are simply not infinite. Resources are finite and the Earth is essentially a closed system."
Well of course I know that resources are finite and the Earth is
a closed system. So what ? Does anyone think otherwise (well,
except maybe some fringe ideologists that nobody listens to) ?
Would it be not "somebody" but "some things", that is the money
and markets themselves, as tools, that are here accused of
"unconsciously" or "logically" "assume" otherwise ? But how can a
thing, that is some tool or convention, be accused to assume
some false hypothesis ? Indeed, between the tool itself in its
elementary concepts, and some global effect we are currently
facing (the depletion of environmental resources), a lot of
intermediate processes are involved. To assume the effect to be a
sort of necessary consequence of some elementary aspect of this
tool, is to assume a lot about these intermediate processes and
how they might be or not be modified. Namely, as I said, they can
be modified by the massive introduction of green taxes. The needed
green taxes would include a tax on the extraction (and the import
into the taxation zone) of fossil carbon resources.
Such a new form of taxation for the protection of the environment has not been tried yet. Well, the voices to support such a reform have not been much heard yet either. This specific solution to the specific problem of environmental protection, would, in my view, be much more relevant than a call to destroy the whole system.
On the other hand, I do seem to see some people that effectively
ignore that resources are finite and that the Earth is a closed
system, in the way they try to influence policies.
I mean, people who insist that each human life is sacred and that we must absolutely care to give to all humans the right to live with enough comfort and make as many children as they like, and to have all these children cared for by the rest of society. Because I do see a directly logical and unavoidable consequence of such a view. This consequence, or assumption, is that we must always, and thus it must be forever possible and okay to, let the human population of the world grow, grow and grow without any limit. With enough comfort, the demography roughly seemed to stabilize in Europe - but at a number that may be considered already too high for the planet. But there are other places in the world, with different cultures, where it is culturally considered normal or even necessary to have big families. Or some genetic variations may lead some people to make many children. And this is not likely to stop even if the comfort is given. What is the necessary logical consequence of this, if indeed the comfort and full right to live and reproduce without limits is granted to everybody ? The necessary consequence is that the population is going to keep growing. The current growth rate is a doubling every 50 years. At this rhythm, we will be at least 20 billions in year 2100, and 80 billions in year 2200. But resources are finite and the Earth is a closed system, aren't they ? How do you expect to give the full comfort to them all ? You may think, we will surely one day have the technology to give comfort to the whole population. The problem is that it might indeed be possible after 100 years to give a full sustainable comfort to the same amount of population as we have now. But... at that time the population will be larger so that this technology still won't suffice. And even with any future technology we might ever dream of, what can happen in year 3000, with a population of about... a million of billion people ?
In fact, I have arguments that overpopulation is harmful in different ways : it is much better for the general interest that the world population stabilizes at a relatively low number than at a high number. For example, a stable 2 billion world population would be better than a 4 billion one.
I perfectly agree it is very awful to think about people
starving. However, if you think that starvation is not the answer,
then what is the answer ? I am amazed to see people thinking so
illogically and irresponsibly that they keep insisting for the
right of every currently living human to live and reproduce but
never consider this question of what should happen next,
forwarding to the next generation the trouble of dealing with that
mess. As I do care and hope that a responsible demographic policy
should be possible without the very dirty means of starvation, I
"To assume the need for constant consumption to keep people employed and hence the market system going is eco-cidal on a finite planet. The true goal of an economy, by definition, is to strategically preserve and create efficiency. The system today demands the opposite."
There is no "assumption of need" for constant consumption that
any ghost of the market might itself "need" to hypnotize people
into inventing that they need, other that what every individual
freely, basically thinks that he needs to consume and for which he
may need to find a job, which might just be biased by some
cultural habits and administrative context but which have little
to do with money and market themselves. If you think there is an
educational problem, that people need to understand that their
real material needs are lower than they think, and thus that they
don't need to work so much to earn what they need, well, you can
just try to explain them, giving examples of how one can live okay
while working less. I just cannot see how money and free market
would be any significant trouble here, except of course in how
they eliminate illusory, irresponsible ways, by rooting the
individual range of options in the reality of global economic
constraints, forcing each option available to someone, to be a way
that respects the interests of others.
But the Zeitgeist movement assumes both that there needs not be any demographic limit, and that people must be given all what they need, so much that even without money and private property, everybody will think he has enough and does not need to bother, neither about saving anything nor working for having more.
To produce more comfort with less work (per person) and let the number of people grow without limit, while destroying the free market mechanisms which actually are the best available optimization tool that preserves and creates efficiency, doesn't it mathematically imply to multiply the total exploitation of environmental resources, in ways eco-cidal on a finite planet ? Remember the Soviet Union : replacing free market by their strategic economic planning, they created less wealth with more use and destruction of environmental resources. In the search of compromise between the interests of humans, their reproductive instinct and the environment, there is no magic wand to boost all much faster than the current free market incentives for the development of technologies and organizational optimization are currently doing.
"The Monetary-Market Model is based upon money being treated as a Commodity and its origination from Debt; sold for Interest Income. This is a "Ponzi Scheme". Each time this Commodity (Money) is sold (Bank Loans) it needs to be paid back (Debt) with more money charged as a fee for profit (Interest). The problem is that the Interest Value required to settle the debt does not exist in the Money Supply outright. In other words, Bankruptcy and Default are not byproducts - they are inevitable – as there is always more debt outstanding than money in existence. This creates severe, offset monetary scarcity that oppresses many people on many levels."
The analysis of the foundations of money, either the ones
currently in place, or possibly better ones, is far from trivial,
but requires quite elaborate and careful mathematical work to be
done properly. I perfectly agree that there are some troubles in
the way the current money systems are founded, as I cared myself
to express a new,
more mathematically coherent foundation of money that would
work on a very different basis (without banks nor central banks)
and resolve some inconsistencies of the current systems. However,
fast, uncareful attempts at trying to describe money systems, can
be misleading and incoherent (even more incoherent than how money
systems are actually working), and this is what seems to have
happened in the above paragraph. I don't think the current systems
are as bad as described here. And no, there is usually no Ponzi
Scheme in place. If all was based on a Ponzi Scheme, there would
not have been all the growth and relative stability that we had
since the end of the Second World War. So, if anyone thinks that
the above description makes any sense, I challenge him to explain
why financial crisis have not been much more frequent than they
Precisely, since not all debts of the world must be paid back at once, whoever gets some money back from a loan with an interest at one time, can do savings or consumption with this money, making it circulate and available for any further paying back of other loans. There is no necessary instability here.
Some Ponzi Schemes may sometimes happen, especially now those
made by all the states that try to pay back their current debts by
new debts, as a consequence of the traditional foolish opposition
of voters to any austerity policy, which forced the states to
borrow more and more in the last decades.
"Likewise, the intents inherent within the monetary system derive a strategic edge from scarcity. This means that depleted resources are actually a positive thing for industry in the short term for more money can be made off each respective unit. This is contextual to the monetary law of Supply & Demand and hence "Value" in economics. It creates a perverse reinforcement to ignore environmental problems and the negative consequences that create scarcity; not to mention reinforcing technically unnecessary human deprivation. This system does not/can not meet the needs of the many because it isn't financially efficient to do so."
This argument is much too vague to make any sense. Please be much more specific, with examples. The owner of some piece of a general resource cannot control how depleted is the rest of the world in this same resource. Therefore his interest to see the rest of the world depleted in it, has no effect. Well, you might refer to the agreements of the oil exporting countries to reduce the oil production in order to increase prices. But, well, once more, it isn't so bad to be thus forced by higher prices to reduce our spendings of this non-renewable resource, and such things could not have happened anyway if the world population was quite lower than now.
I'd say on the contrary, a strong environmental preservation
policy (such as a military protection of the rainforest against
exploitation) would result in depleting the amount of legally
authorized use of natural resources, and thus create scarcity,
higher price and deprivation as concerns human consumption. And
again, the feeling of scarcity of natural resources would be lower
if the human population was smaller.
And no, there is usually no "inherent intent" nor any "strategic" thing in a competitive free market. Such a conspiracy theoretical vision of an interacting space/mechanism which actually is but a yet imperfect optimization tool, to see there some diabolical "intents" and "strategic" characters, by lack of any more careful logical analysis of its actual mechanisms and possible variants, is just comparable to religious worldviews that see the world as a sort of Devil's empire, like Manicheism or even Christianity in the way some Christians see so many things as results of the devil's manipulations.
"Similarly, the system also requires problems/constant consumer interest in order to work. The more people who have cancer or cars that breakdown, the better the economy due to the servicing of those problems. Needless to say, this also generates an inherent disregard for human well being and the environment. Sustainability, efficiency, and preservation are the enemies of this model."
As concerns what people with different orientations may approve
or disapprove in terms of public policies, some Keynesian people
might indeed fall in this trap, but certainly not hardcore
Now if you think this is a major problem as concerns the behavior
of some private companies that willingly sell low quality products
in order to make money providing repairing services thereafter (or
eventually sell again another version of this product later,
though the risk that the consumer will then choose a competitor
probably makes the expected financial advantage of that producer
quite poor - or just because lower quality productions cost less),
and if for any reason I do not get, the possibility for producers
of better quality products to get the wider market share they
deserve by adding warranties still does not suffice, it's up to
you to develop consumer journals that will help people better know
which products (or trademarks, in case there is not enough time to
discover the lifetime of each item) have sufficiently better
qualities that justify their higher price by a longer lifetime. No
need to get rid of money and free market for this. Still more
functions can be added to the free market to bring corrections, as
would result from my project : the trust system would bring
information on trust concerning "small" or even individual
producers, that a journal could not cover. The new foundation of
money can provide for a cheap flexible and reliable justice system
and easy paying back of unfair practices.
But if you think that there is any specific financial interest to
generate cancers which effectively results in managing to bring
this cancer to people for a higher profit, please explain which
market mechanisms are involved here because I do not see what you
are concretely referring to here.
Well I know, there is such a trouble with psychiatry which
manages to artificially produce troubles and addiction to some
drugs in order bring more sales. But there would be much less
troubles of this sort if things were cared for by some private
insurance company that would be interested to minimize the health
cost. Or if people were not invited and even sometimes obliged to
take drugs they don't really need because of the absurd
bureaucratic rules of the state-ruled social healthcare system
that leads them to this nonsense.
What's the sense of the phrase "Sustainability, efficiency,
and preservation are the enemies of this model." ? How can a
thing be an enemy of another thing ? People or groups of people
can be enemies of other people or other people. But things don't
love nor hate each other, so they cannot be enemies of each other.
Such a way of projecting human feelings to things is a quite
poetic worldview, and indeed a religious one that sees the world
as a perpetual fight between occult forces of good and evil, where
the market is the hidden evil with a definite will that would fit
with the Gospel's description of Satan in Mark 3:23, but it is
definitely not any kind scientific description of a system
explained in terms of logical relations and specific causalities
to be analyzed. Even the law of gravitation is not described as
the "enemy" of birds trying to fly. Sometimes such words may be
used metaphorically to sum up scientific laws, but rational
justifications must exist behind, which is not the case here (The
"arguments" are too fuzzy and not logical).
"the market requirement to cut creation costs in favor of lowering the output "purchase price" to maintain a competitive edge automatically reduces the quality of any given item by default. It is impossible to create the "strategically best"/long lasting anything in our society, which translates into outrageous amounts of wasted resources and time"
It's the consumer's choice to decide which compromise between
quality and price is best. If a consumer chooses to be satisfied
with some "low quality" thing because he considers this as a more
optimal use of the resources that were counted in the price (his
work), that's his choice. Now again, if the problem is that this
wastes some other resources (environmental ones) not currently
included in the price, then once again I have answered : there
needs to be green taxes to include all components of the used
resources in the price.
Why would the longest lasting version of something would necessarily be the strategically best choice ? What if, in fact, the longest-lasting version requires 10 times more work and resources to be made, than the version that will last just half that amount of time ?
Once green taxes would bring the necessary corrections for the market optimization process to include all components of the resource costs, if you think you know what is the strategically best solution, then you are free to implement it and offer it on the market. If it is really the best strategy, then this will be the most profitable business too.
"The fact is, most jobs today are not directly related to the actual necessities of life. Rather, most are artificial concoctions created in order to keep people employed so they can maintain purchasing power in an environment where our technology continues to expand exponentially, displacing humans from the production force. It is a common statement in politics today to hear about "creating jobs". Well, in theory, an occupation could be created where people are paid to sit in a room and test chewing gum all day, everyday... but is that a viable use of the human mind? (...) This becomes even more bizarre as a train of reason when we realize that Mechanization not only frees us from labor, it is actually more efficient and productive due to the exponential advancement of science and technology. "
Please give examples of "jobs not directly related to the actual
necessities of life". Do you include here teaching ?
Transportation ? Arts and literature ? Journalism ? Mars
exploration ? Other scientific research ? Such vague generalities
without any concrete examples and statistical figures make no
sense. And what does it have to do with free market ? Do you find
any significant number of people employed in private companies to
sit in a room and test chewing gum all day ? No. But this kind of
phenomenon is much more significant among "public services"
financed by the state. And who wants push for a policy where more
jobs depend on the state and thus become subject to such risks ?
Well, the left-wing people who cry against the free market. They
even sometimes include the purpose of creating or saving jobs in
their arguments. While free-market supporters (libertarians) want
to push to privatization, and precisely one of their arguments is
to reduce such abuses (to fire some unproductive people that
represent wasteful costs).
As for the question of the need to create jobs. Well, did you
ever ask yourself the question : if it was just okay for anyone to
live without working, then why would anyone bother doing any
productive work ? And if nobody cared to do any productive work,
then how would things be produced, and what could people live of ?
If it was only okay for some people to live without working because "their work happened to be replaced by machines", but not okay for all people, then in the name of what would some people have the right to be classified among those allowed to live without working and still get the goods they need, and others not ? Would not such a distinction lead to a lot of abuses and corruption ? Wouldn't this be a form of social parasitism, where those who "have no job" would be parasites living at the expense of those who "still have a job" ? Wouldn't this be politically unsustainable, and wouldn't those who "have a job" have a legitimate right to refuse such a deal ?
"the very reality that each human being is required to be put in a position of servitude to a corporation or client in order to gain income to purchase the necessities of life not only perpetuates the waste of the human mind and human life, it is also a form of oppression – slavery."
Well it is an unfortunate fact that the natural inclinations of
people to practice the "work" they like, in the way they like,
sometimes differs much from the real needs of the world out there,
the production system, what really needs to be done in order for
production to be effective and to result in valuable goods and
services that will fill the needs of costumers. And it may seem
unnatural for workers who have their personal conception of
"creativity" in the way they wish it to look like to fit their
inspiration, to give up their way and adapt to these productive
requirements whose global reasons they have troubles to perceive
and understand by themselves. From being annoyed in this way to
treating corporations and businesses as "slavery", the step is
The view put forward by the Zeitgeist movement seems to be an
accusation of forcing people to stupid tasks away from
intellectually creative tasks. Well, don't you see that rigorously
speaking, since any rigorously repetitive task is easily replaced
by machines, it naturally leads to only keep the jobs that are not
totally repetitive ?
I am indeed aware that many people who did long university
studies are finally reduced to accepting low-qualified jobs that
do not use all their diplomas, but, I would say there are other
possible ways to interpret this fact. We may consider that the
true intelligence and creativity that the productive system needs
and that is currently lacking, may be rather an innate form of
intelligence, very different from what the university studies
produce ; that the multiplication of long curricula, may not
correspond to any real increase in intelligence and creativity, as
the university curricula, the training for exams and the success
there, are often some mere bureaucratic illusions systems, that do
not reflect the kind of creativity that the productive system
really needs. That the kind of skills and criteria put forward in
academia are quite servile, unimaginative, bureaucratic or
ideological ones, cut off from reality, from true intelligence and
But, what do you expect ? Do you expect everyone to earn his life
as an artist, a musician or a philologist ? But who would produce
the food then ?
"the combination of the guaranteed Debt imbalance and the requirement to submit to Labor, regardless of its purpose/effect, in order to gain monetary income to survival – a structural form of oppression against the lower classes (who hold the most debt and need for more period income)."Basically, the sense of debt is as a tool for investment and a shared responsibility system : when someone needs resources for starting a business, there needs to be someone to provide the means to do so, and take a share or responsibility : if the business project is unreasonable and will fail, the money should not be granted, otherwise the money cannot be paid back and the lender will lose the value.
"This scarcity logic also applies to the quality of goods. The idea of creating something that could last, say, a lifetime with little repair, is anathema to the market system, for it reduces consumption rates, which slows growth and creates systemic repercussions (loss of jobs, etc.). The scarcity attribute of the market system is nothing but detrimental for these reasons, not to mention that it doesn't even serve the role of efficient resource preservation, which is often claimed.If you really think that there currently is such a huge problem of lack of efficiency in the current way of doing things, and that things would go so much better following the way described above, then it's up to you to create new businesses of renting things, or selling high quality things with long warrantees and/or your commitment to buy things back for a good price in the future for reselling them. Assuming the above claims to be right, there is no logical reason why such a new business would not be profitable - in the very framework of free market as it currently stands.
The real issue relevant to meeting human needs is not ownership - it is access. People use things, they do not "own" them. Ownership is a non-operational, protectionist advent, derived from generations of scarcity over resources, currently compounded by market based adverting which supports status/class division for the sake of monetary gain . To put it another way, ownership is a form of controlled restriction, both physically and ideologically. Property as a system of controlled restriction, coupled with the monetary value inherent and hence the market consequences is unsustainable, limiting and impractical. In a RBEM, the focus moves from static ownership to strategic access, with a system designed for society to obtain access as needed. For example, rather than owning various forms of recreational sporting equipment, Access Centers are set up, typically in regions where such actions occur, where a person simply "checks out" the equipment- uses it and returns it. This "library" type arrangement can be applied to virtually any type of human need."
(copy of one of my posts there)
Let's start with the question of agriculture and food production. Or more precisely a very short summary of some of its main aspects.
We know that meat production uses much more resources than vegetarian food, because it takes a lot of space to grow the necessary food for the animals, as each kg of meat requires many kg of vegetarian food to grow the animal.
And that, well, in the absolute we don't really need meat. It
would be more or less possible for humans to live with a
Now many people starve because they have very little money and that is not enough to buy some products, which go instead for animal consumption to produce the meat for people which can afford to buy it, as they have much more money which makes it profitable to take 10 kg of vegetarian products and give it to animals to make 1kg of meat for them.
So in the absolute we may consider that in a "resource based economy" where goods are shared and optimally used for the needs of all people, the logical solution to the problem would be to stop or at least strongly reduce the production of meat, to preserve for humans a large part of the production now "wasted" to feed animals.
So my question is : what is actually the concrete answer that the
Venus/Zeitgeist offer to this problem ? Will all people be forced
to accept a vegetarian diet ? If only partially, then what will be
the limit ? Will there be a policy of limitations, where every
person can only take a limited quantity of meat ? Will this limit
be set per day, or per year ? Or with a longer time period ?
Some kinds of meat take less resources than others. So will it be possible to have more meat by choosing the kind of meat that takes less resources per kg ?
If in a family someone is vegetarian, will he have the right to offer his share of meat to his family members who would like to have more than their share - maybe in exchange for something else ? Is it fair ? Should it be forbidden ? If it should be forbidden, then how to control it ?
There are many similar things : some fruits are less "perfect"
than others : they may be a little bit damaged, or old. Now they
can still be distributed and consumed by putting lower prices on
them. But in the absence of a money system, who will take them if
there are more perfect ones available ? But what/who will decide
who may take the better ones ? Won't it naturally lead to huge
queues like in the Soviet Union ? Apples are usually cheaper than
other fruits, I guess because they take less resources to produce
(otherwise the producers would have chosen to grow something else
instead), but still don't take over other fruits because apples a
usually considered less tasty than other fruits. Why would
anyone eat apples under a resource based economy, in the absence
of a money system ? But the very idea of a resource based economy
is to use less resources, while precisely, apples use less
resources, right ? Now there is a lot of waste of food despite the
financial cost of wasting things. But in the absence of money, if
everything is available for free, why would anyone care to not
waste food ? Care to not take more in their plate than what they
will eat ?
In short : the whole Zeitgeist ideology seems to be based on the material assumption that the best quality products are always those which use the least resources (just because sometimes we may consider that they last longer), so that they only should be produced, and other products will be banned. But this assumption is far from true, and there are multiple cases where compromises need to be seeked between quality and resource saving. Only some free market with some money system can do that (even if, as said some corrections are needed from the way it currently happens).
Another problem : currently one of the biggest costs of life is
lodging. Not only the cost of building houses, but also, the cost
of occupying a place near city centers, since, for owners, buying
an area of empty ground in a city center is no less costly than
getting a house built there. So it means that many people are
ready to pay a lot for the "right" to live in city centers (the
rents are higher than in suburbs for the same buildings). Now if
there is no money system, who/what will decide who will have the
right to stay in city centers ?
Hello Sylvain,My reply:
I discovered your website settheory.net today as it was linked to antispirituality.net, a top result for my query "Zeitgeist Movement Criticism"
I am a proponent of Peter Joseph's criticism of capitalism and I believe that a resource based economy is the most rational method of handling the earths resources if it could be practically implemented. I think it was a huge mistake for TZM to make the leap in assuming the Venus Project was a flawless fit for their critique of capitalism. That said I think there are problems with your criticism of TZM, I worry that you will expect me to be another TZM zombie but I think I am much more open minded than most members. I will only make a few quick points because I want the main focus of this email to be what I discovered on your websites. I am most interested in your personal solution which you called infoliberalism, but also wanted to touch on your system of learning math and your past experiences.
So far I have read only the main page on infoliberalism and a few of the linked pages. I think I understand most of the concepts but not in great detail. I just have a few questions (...)
I feel like I could write a 10 page letter just on this, I have many similar experiences and it's hard for me to say if things turned out better or worse for me. I never continued my institutional education quitting college after 2 years. School was nothing but a huge waste of time for me that left me bored and depressed. At this point all i have is my physical and emotional health, and my talents. What i do not have is a career or degree so I am facing a choice of pursuing profit or my personal preference of pursuing education and philanthropy with the danger of ending in a difficult retirement situation.
Just to leave this subject for another time I just want to say I am a huge proponent of educational reform at every level. I think Noam Chomsky made a good point of the problem you mentioned about why professors don't improve the curriculum.
"Students who acquire large debts putting themselves through school are unlikely to think about changing society. When you trap people in a system of debt they can't afford the time to think. Tuition Fee increases are a disciplinary technique, and by the time students graduate, they are not only loaded with debt, but have also internalized the disciplinarian culture. This makes them efficient components of the consumer economy."
Nearly every professor has been indoctrinated into our disciplinarian culture since age 5, meaning since long before they could think they were in this system, and thus never truly learned to think. Instead they develop mental processing skills which apply only to their specialties and areas of expertise. How else would you have Mormon scientists? It is because their thinking is compartmentalized to a specific context which is itself set by higher authorities.
My first point is that a resource based economy means dealing directly with the real problem of using the earths resources to meet the needs of humanity including sustainability. Adding a monetary system creates a layer of abstraction which prevents optimal methods of resource management. Of course the feasibility of implementing a resource based economy is in question but the fact that if implemented it is more efficient than a monetary economy seems obvious to me. As for the feasibility, I feel this is where everyone i talk to is foolish. TZM simply assumes it's necessary but never proves it, and critics seem to just say it won't work because it is marxism. The problem with that is first that nothing of it's type has been tried in the current technological environment, and secondly it is not marxism because marxism means top down politically, militarily, economically, etc. Also marxism tries to prescribe the peoples needs. Any real resource based economy that would exist in the future would be only economic, and in my view would be based on a form of online direct democracy or online anarcho-syndicalism with people describing their own needs. Now there may be reasons this won't work but if so they are different then the reasons marxism didn't work.
My second point is about your criticism of their scientific validity. I will simply say that while many of their views are not scientifically validated as you have pointed out, the concept of basing decisions in scientific theory is a good one. Just as some 'soft sciences' are not as scientific as physics because they deal with subjective subject matter, the fact that they make every effort to be as scientific as possible is still a valid improvement over other methods they might implement.
> I am a proponent of Peter Joseph's criticism of capitalism and I believe
> that a resource based economy is the most rational method of handling the
> earths resources if it could be practically implemented.
Did you notice that the end of this sentence ("IF...") completely
destroys its meaning ?
> 3. It seems like a big problem will be that currently everyone in a power
> position will want to resist the idea since
People currently in power are nothing. Since 10 years I faced one and only one obstacle: the total absence of anyone in the world except myself ready to bother caring about helping this project.
Just if this unanimity of passivity against me is broken then the revolution will happen. All what is needed is to make the software.
Nobody in power can ever forbid someone to make this software. Once the software will be done, people in power will have no way to stop its use.
See more comments here : settheory.net/life
"Resource based economy" is only a slogan, not a method. In itself this slogan has no meaning, it says absolutely nothing about the kind of method that you may want to implement in the name of it.
It makes no sense to define it as an alternative to a "money based economy" as these things are on different level and are not comparable: The need of money as a general optimization tool, remains a necessary tool for any kind of optimization, and independent of the specific list of parameters to be taken into account in optimization procedures, namely the parameters of the limitations of the Earth's resources
For me it is clear that there is no possible working system without a money system. We only need to rebuild money on better foundations in order to correct the flaws of the current system. The optimal way to take care of the Earth's resources is by market structures once the proper corrections will be done, namely introducing a proper system of taxes (and sometimes prohibitions) on the use of these resources.
> My first point is that a resource based economy means dealing directly with
> the real problem of using the earths resources to meet the needs of humanity
> including sustainability. Adding a monetary system creates a layer of
> abstraction which prevents optimal methods of resource management.
I cannot agree. Some kind of abstraction is necessary to handle any complex problem. This is the science vs. religion "debate". Religion is the rejection of abstractions, and the claim to have a direct access to the naked reality based on its obsessive refusal to think rationally. But science turned out to be the successful way to access reality, at least the physical one, by its rational abstraction.
Not a theory
> the feasibility of implementing a resource based economy is in question but
A question which is totally empty of meaning since "resource based economy" is only a slogan, a vague dream whose intended effective meaning as a method, was never defined ; only dreamers dream that it makes sense ; as they are mere dreamers and poets, not rational people, they are not even able to notice what it means for a given slogan that sounds nice, to make sense or not in reality, so they failed to notice that they are only dreamers making senseless dreams and only dreaming that their dreams should be making sense, while they have actually no project. And there logically cannot ever be any such a thing as an effective project that may anyhow fit with this dream.
> problem with that is first that nothing of it's type has been tried in the
> current technological environment,
Millions of people tried it, that is Marxism. But no matter how many millions of people already tried, "succeeded" to politically overthrow logic, mental sanity and this necessary tool for economic life that is money, millions of more people can still have a great game to keep pretending that nobody tried it the right way and that we must start trying over and over again...
Same as with spirituality, see "Divisions of spirituality".
> and secondly it is not marxism because
> marxism means top down politically, militarily, economically, etc. Also
I do not see this as a meaningful difference, as I did not include this in the list of features I saw worth mentioning at http://antispirituality.net/marxism-religion
> physics because they deal with subjective subject matter, the fact that they
> make every effort to be as scientific as possible is still a valid
> improvement over other methods they might implement.
They do not make any effort to be scientific in any meaningful sense whatsoever. They only pretend to, in ways that only idiots can take seriously.
Please read again my page, from "Their purpose, thus, is..." to
"...since there is no reason to see it so".
And please read my pages on science and irrationality
There is much more in their FAQ to examine; and more things
elsewhere, for example I'll try to have a look there
someday and write a reply...
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