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Thread: Direction of the World

  1. #1
    So...noisy Stein's Avatar
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    Default Direction of the World

    It seems with each month we're a step closer to the time of revelation, if that's the case, what exactly are we going to do? Humanity as a whole needs to change but it seems what exactly we as a whole must do is anything but clear. Is the answer to reform the traditional idea of civilization? Do we stay the course and hope for the best? Expand into space in the hopes that distance will discourage conflict?

    I'd also like to talk about what is thought about the problems humanity will be facing soon. Is it possible that there will be multiple apocalyptic scenarios we'll have to deal with?

    I've kept this thread vague for a reason, I want everyone to make their first post a little essay explaining their views about this. It can be as long or short as you want, but your first post has to exclusively concern your views. After this then you're free to reply as you wish. This way I hope to generate a lot of different discussions and the inevitable overlap between all of them. Anyway, I'll present my case:

    I believe that we are only in the situation we are in because of the fundamental flaws of modern civilization. Putting a group of people in charge who cater to their own interests is just plain stupid, and every form of government to date inevitably reduces itself to this.

    Monarchy: It's been seen many times in history. A courageous man who embodies everything it means to be a strong leader will lead a nation through an era of untold prosperity and success...only to lead to an heir that will run the country into the ground. Spoiled by the life of royalty and only caring of their own interests and needs, they blatantly coerce and extort the lives of the people who put their trust in the ones who came before him.

    Democracy: Our choices are limited to those who have chosen to thrust themselves into the spotlight. Are the individuals who actively seek power, and invest obscene amounts of time in the manipulation of public opinion to obtain that power really those fit to lead? Voting no longer captures the voice of the nation, but is simply a testament to the ambition of cruel men and the sad ineptitude of the modern man, stripped of his dignity by a life of selfishness and excess. The current scale of society has rendered democracy obsolete, the golden days of Greece are gone.

    Socialism: I believe anarchist communism is what we possess a natural disposition towards. At heart its simply the idea of working together and sharing. Although instead of enacting it in its natural form, many have tried unsuccessfully restructure it in a way that allows it to cooperate with the other forms of government that do not hold the same things important. Doing this has undercut the true strengths of the philosophy and rendered it as weak as the other forms. It's beginning to seem that it's impossible to recreate it successfully without the abolition of everything else. Makes it easy to toy with the idea that the apocalypse could simply be a reset button.

    Furthermore, I think that huge strides in human attitude need to be made. Many of the societal ettiquacy and tradition we are used to weaken our ability to connect with each other. I don't mean to say that society is the cause of people not getting along, human conflict is something primordial in origin that will always be a fundamental part of our existence. However, in our antiquity a dispute between men could never have threatened the lives of all. Civilization has done nothing but separate us emotionally, put the fate of the planet on the chopping block and caused an untold amount of tragedy for the people who have lived and died for the past thousands of years. In the name of security, we have successfully put ourselves and every other living thing on the planet in danger. We need to stop and reconsider what we're doing, but at this rate we'll never even get the chance to regret our mistake.

  2. #2
    Vanity of vanities, all is vanity Hicky's Avatar
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    To me, a stronger state is required. We will have to move further towards authoritarianism as technology continuously increases in quality and ability to cause harm. The original rules of nature - anarchistic animalism - are less relevant in today's society, as this exceedingly connected world in which we live in is becoming overpopulated. The linking of society is going through a dark phase at the moment but it will finally see it's usefulness when it connects the entire world. The closer we get to the whole Earth being an empire, the better. Once we manage to connect the Earth and make most societies reminiscent of each other, then we can begin to work on a universal economic model.

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    what about .. eyebrows God's Avatar
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    I think it is pretty well known on here that I am a hard-line communist. The only way to a decent world is to have everybody empowered and to allow everyone an active role in the decision making process of their communities. People talk about democracy because they elect some guy to go off and do whatever he wants and pick up a huge government salary, but a great majority of peoples lives are spent in un-democratic, authoritarian institutes such as schools and the capitalist workplace where orders go from the top down generally unquestioned - this breeds apathy, which allows a privileged few, very much more often than not privileged simply by a virtue of birth, to exploit the many.

    The main thing that needs to be done is increase labor unionisation, eventually to the point where the management structure is dismantled. The most important part in the live of most people is their job - where they spend the most time outside of their immediate family and from which they gain their livelihood. Workers need to be put in the position of actively managing and making decisions on the level of individual stores, factories, shops etc. in a bottom-up structure. Doing this will naturally empower people and it will then be only a short step for everyone to be actively participating in the communal distribution of resources and to ensure the accountability of those elected to representative bodies.

    Corporations and markets should not exist as they are top-down structures controlled by a few people who either got lucky or were born into it, that breed apathy among the great number of people and lead to the social structures that we see today.

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    In Soviet Russia, Editor is protected from YOU!! The Editor's Avatar
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    I don't think a global empire will work. Everybody has different views on everything, and compromise will make a lot of people unhappy, especially if opinion is divided by continent, country or nation.

    I'm not going to pretend to know what we need to do. I'm pretty sure I'd be wrong. But I do think things would be better if didn't have countries trying to expand their borders. If religions could stop trying to influence people outside their sphere of influence that'd be nice.

    As for government... Well, communism can't work because people are ultimately selfish bastards. Fascism doesn't go down well with our sense of morality. Monarchy avoids choice. Democracy involves compromise which invariably leads to problems. In some ways despotism might be best, because at least it's decisive and gets thing's done. If you can find a despot who actually cares for his people then what you'd probably end up with is a lot of unpopular decisions that ultimately result in better lives for all concerned. I also think nuclear power is worth the risk, although fusion is better once we get it working.

    Oh, and the human race will never change. People are selfish jerks. It's hard-coded. Until we perfect the art of genetic editing it's not possible, and if we do I wouldn't want it to be used to change how people behave.

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    what about .. eyebrows God's Avatar
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    That version of human nature is basically a largely-western myth. Also considering man has been evolving along side of culture and society on an anthropological basis long before anatomically modern humans even existed it is very much within "human nature" to view the benefit of all synonymous with the benefit of self.

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    So...noisy Stein's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hicky View Post
    To me, a stronger state is required. We will have to move further towards authoritarianism as technology continuously increases in quality and ability to cause harm. The original rules of nature - anarchistic animalism - are less relevant in today's society, as this exceedingly connected world in which we live in is becoming overpopulated. The linking of society is going through a dark phase at the moment but it will finally see it's usefulness when it connects the entire world. The closer we get to the whole Earth being an empire, the better. Once we manage to connect the Earth and make most societies reminiscent of each other, then we can begin to work on a universal economic model.
    I feel that it is no more or less relevant than it always was. Considering it is the natural form of society I feel theres no reason to discount its importance simply because the modern era has made it difficult to enact. I'd like to share your optimism for the future of world order, but at this rate I just don't see it being any better, if anything I feel creating a world wide authoritarian government would only make things that much worse.

    Quote Originally Posted by God View Post
    That version of human nature is basically a largely-western myth. Also considering man has been evolving along side of culture and society on an anthropological basis long before anatomically modern humans even existed it is very much within "human nature" to view the benefit of all synonymous with the benefit of self.
    Agreed, that's simply shoddy justification to act like a selfish asshole in the guise of pessimism. Anyone claiming this is the exclusive way of the heart clearly doesn't know much about being human.

    As for your argument, it sounds like we're pretty much on the same page.

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    Registered Users Regular TeenageAngst's Avatar
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    I believe Ludwig Von Mises said it best: "When history comes to tell our story it will write above the chapter 'The Epoch of Socialism.'" Socialism is the economic model du jour, once supported only by resentful workers and misguided philanthropists it now digs deep into the core of all western society. To openly oppose or even question all forms of true socialism would make all but the most libertarian minded recoil, but I can't find an aspect of the philosophy that would work without the entire system being enforced and perfectly executed, something beyond the scope of human capacity. There really are only two big reasons why socialism is popular.

    The first is because capitalism being a human institution has flaws, and people believe socialism is the answer. While it's true capitalism isn't perfect, it's not enough to simply point that out, the proof remains to be presented that socialism will perform better. Historically and scientifically it has not been able to out perform capitalism. This is seen as superfluous in the face of socialism's supposed higher moral standards.

    This brings me to the second reason, socialism does not appeal to the logical mind, it appeals to the emotional heart. It inspires hope for equality, for better standards of living to poorer people. It gives a form of justice (or perhaps "vengeance" is a better word) when the rich are felled and the working men rise. It does not bother with the trivialities of an effective government; no socialist you talk to on the street could put forth a logically coherant model.

    Both fortunately and unfortunately, the capitalist system will prevail over such a system unless everything in the socialist nation is static. Not because capitalism is perfect but because it's a law of nature akin to the survival of the fittest (or fit enough). This is fortunate to the ones who foresee the changes in economic and social structure and plan their livelyhoods riding it's triumphs and circumnavigating it's inevitable downfall. Ironically, the ones most hurt by socialism's shortfalls will be those it most sought to aid. The poor, the dependant, the unskilled, the uneducated, those who supported the socialist cause with all their hearts will find themselves disillusioned and forgotten, and a generation will be left with no guidance for their future. This is what I fear the most, because after the western downfall of socialism there will be a dangerous consolidation of power. As they say, it's darkest before the storm.

    So what to do about the direction of the world? There is little to do, and true capitalists generally have little say in the matter. It's the consumers, the consumers make the demands and the capitalists always supply. The political consumers demand socialism, and the politicians will reflect this, cause what's a politician but a political product?
    "I prefer a sane world where you are rewarded by providing people with something they want. Not arbitrarily rewarded in a status game that reminds me of chimpanzees." - nazgulnarsil

    Here I am with my empire
    Iíll bring you to your knees
    Ebb and flow with my desire
    Cause its all that youíve been taught to be

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    Registered Users Regular TeenageAngst's Avatar
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    To me, a stronger state is required. We will have to move further towards authoritarianism as technology continuously increases in quality and ability to cause harm. The original rules of nature - anarchistic animalism - are less relevant in today's society, as this exceedingly connected world in which we live in is becoming overpopulated. The linking of society is going through a dark phase at the moment but it will finally see it's usefulness when it connects the entire world. The closer we get to the whole Earth being an empire, the better. Once we manage to connect the Earth and make most societies reminiscent of each other, then we can begin to work on a universal economic model.
    I find it unsettling you'd work on the universal economic model *after* forcing together the entire world under an authoritarian state.

    I think it is pretty well known on here that I am a hard-line communist. The only way to a decent world is to have everybody empowered and to allow everyone an active role in the decision making process of their communities. People talk about democracy because they elect some guy to go off and do whatever he wants and pick up a huge government salary,
    Government jobs don't actually pay that well.

    but a great majority of peoples lives are spent in un-democratic, authoritarian institutes such as schools and the capitalist workplace where orders go from the top down generally unquestioned - this breeds apathy, which allows a privileged few, very much more often than not privileged simply by a virtue of birth, to exploit the many.
    Actually, the great majority are there by qualification. Having everyone be active in decision making processes is flawed to the core. What would an elementary school teacher know about civil planning? What would a factory worker know about national product distrobution?

    The main thing that needs to be done is increase labor unionisation, eventually to the point where the management structure is dismantled.
    And who would run the factories? Managers, difficult as it is to believe, do a fantastic balancing act making sure labor is effectively supplied to all portions of the production process, and making sure materials are all stocked as well as other bits of expedition. This continues all the way up the line.

    The most important part in the live of most people is their job - where they spend the most time outside of their immediate family and from which they gain their livelihood.
    You say their job is the most important part of their lives. I say, why should it be?

    Workers need to be put in the position of actively managing and making decisions on the level of individual stores, factories, shops etc. in a bottom-up structure.
    Lets ask the stock boy what we should stock before asking the manager if we can supply that item before asking the district manager if it's even in our distrobution warehouse before asking the upper level executives if it's profitable in that area. Oh wait, why not have the execs tell the district manager what's profitable so he can ship it to the manager who can supply the stock boy with the item so it can be sold and actually make money. Huh, there's logic in a top down organization, who'da thought basing something off of military structure would make it brutally efficient?

    Doing this will naturally empower people and it will then be only a short step for everyone to be actively participating in the communal distribution of resources and to ensure the accountability of those elected to representative bodies.
    It's a slippery slope argument.

    Corporations and markets should not exist as they are top-down structures controlled by a few people who either got lucky or were born into it, that breed apathy among the great number of people and lead to the social structures that we see today.
    Market - noun - a demand for a particular commodity or service.
    2 - the free market; the operation of supply and demand.

    Unless you plan to eliminate demand for all commodities and services by having them in ample supply everywhere, there will be a market. Real life example look at Soviet Russia. They had major distrobution problems, and due to shortages a black market arose. The black market was headed by the Russian mafia, and is the major reason for them being so powerful now.
    "I prefer a sane world where you are rewarded by providing people with something they want. Not arbitrarily rewarded in a status game that reminds me of chimpanzees." - nazgulnarsil

    Here I am with my empire
    Iíll bring you to your knees
    Ebb and flow with my desire
    Cause its all that youíve been taught to be

  9. #9
    what about .. eyebrows God's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TeenageAngst View Post
    Government jobs don't actually pay that well.
    Elected officials are paid obscenely well. In that statement I was obviously referring to the likes of congress members.


    Actually, the great majority are there by qualification. Having everyone be active in decision making processes is flawed to the core. What would an elementary school teacher know about civil planning? What would a factory worker know about national product distrobution?
    Obviously in a committee/meeting someone with a background in civil planning would have a more respected opinion when discussing civil planning options than a teacher of a factory worker. Then again a teacher or factory worker could very well educate themselves in civil planning. The point is that everyone is include in the decision making process.

    And who would run the factories? Managers, difficult as it is to believe, do a fantastic balancing act making sure labor is effectively supplied to all portions of the production process, and making sure materials are all stocked as well as other bits of expedition. This continues all the way up the line.
    How could this not be decided by a committee? Or even a 'management' position which is an elected office.



    You say their job is the most important part of their lives. I say, why should it be?
    Uh, for the reasons I listed I guess? I'm not even saying it should be, I'm saying for most people it largely is - and it's a top-down environment where they are left out of any decision making process.

    Lets ask the stock boy what we should stock before asking the manager if we can supply that item before asking the district manager if it's even in our distrobution warehouse before asking the upper level executives if it's profitable in that area.
    Uh, let's let workers at the ground level have access to their own financial records so they know these things and can thus make decisions? Basically your argument for a management structure is that they only validate their existence by with-holding information.



    Market - noun - a demand for a particular commodity or service.
    2 - the free market; the operation of supply and demand.

    Unless you plan to eliminate demand for all commodities and services by having them in ample supply everywhere, there will be a market. Real life example look at Soviet Russia. They had major distrobution problems, and due to shortages a black market arose. The black market was headed by the Russian mafia, and is the major reason for them being so powerful now.
    Perhaps an end to markets was a poor way of phrasing it because I still do think that stores/factories/etc on an individual level should be the ones supplying goods to the community rather than a large government distribution program, just that they should be wholly worker-owned. Ending things like the private trade of commodities I should have said.

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    Registered Users Regular TeenageAngst's Avatar
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    Obviously in a committee/meeting someone with a background in civil planning would have a more respected opinion when discussing civil planning options than a teacher of a factory worker. Then again a teacher or factory worker could very well educate themselves in civil planning. The point is that everyone is include in the decision making process.
    What it sounds like is actually hyper democracy, using democracy to make every decision that involves more than two people. This is what I call massarchy, and it's even worse than regular democracy.

    How could this not be decided by a committee? Or even a 'management' position which is an elected office.
    You mean like a board of directors?
    Project managers?
    Stock Holder's meetings?
    Brainstorm sessions?

    Uh, for the reasons I listed I guess? I'm not even saying it should be, I'm saying for most people it largely is - and it's a top-down environment where they are left out of any decision making process.
    So don't remedy the problem, just treat the symptoms.

    Uh, let's let workers at the ground level have access to their own financial records so they know these things and can thus make decisions? Basically your argument for a management structure is that they only validate their existence by with-holding information.
    Educating every member of a corporation about every aspect is impractical.

    Perhaps an end to markets was a poor way of phrasing it because I still do think that stores/factories/etc on an individual level should be the ones supplying goods to the community rather than a large government distribution program, just that they should be wholly worker-owned. Ending things like the private trade of commodities I should have said.
    Give me your explanation of the Labor Theory of Value before this conversation goes any further.
    "I prefer a sane world where you are rewarded by providing people with something they want. Not arbitrarily rewarded in a status game that reminds me of chimpanzees." - nazgulnarsil

    Here I am with my empire
    Iíll bring you to your knees
    Ebb and flow with my desire
    Cause its all that youíve been taught to be

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    So...noisy Stein's Avatar
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    What is your ideal government TA?

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    Registered Users Regular TeenageAngst's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stein View Post
    What is your ideal government TA?
    I'm going to discuss my realistic government as free market anarchy is unattainable. The federal reserve would be abolished, and power over our money would be put back into the hands of elected officials in congress. Things like lobbyists, special interest groups, and revolving door politics would cease as all political candidates would be denied any financial support. Taxes would shrink, as their only use would be for things that benefit the whole of the nation more than leaving the money in the hands of the individual citizens. For example, there would be more projects akin to the interstate system (which has benefited every consumer in the nation) rather than multi billion dollar bail outs. The military would shrink, the incentives for joining reduced, the no bid contracts would be abolished and the military most importantly of all would only be used in cases of national defense.

    The constitution would be upheld firmly. Trivial laws would be repealed, opening new doors to everything from clean nuclear power that runs off already existent nuclear waste to more fuel efficient cars that get 60 miles to the galleon without sacrificing power to buying a machine pistol at your local gun store with only proof of age and citizenship. Trade barriers would be eliminated, opening the world market to us, allowing us the cheapest imports and allowing us to negotiate better export deals.

    The entire economy would revolve around free market economics. Laws and policies would have a mandatory minimum waiting period before taking effect during which they can be canceled to ensure that laws are not passed in the heat of the moment. In order for a policy to pass it must be logically and scientifically sound, thus third party experts would be brought in to voice opinions and open debate on the subjects. This means emotionally gratifying laws such as child labor laws and minimum wage as well as animal rights would be repealed, as such laws have no *genuine* scientific or logical footholds but appeal purely to the emotional part of us.

    Overall domestic and foreign policies would be minimal. The government would do it's job, keeping the nation in a state of steady economic growth. Foreign alliances would not be made, but neither would hostilities. Open trade would provide a remarkable defense against would be aggressors, and if we ever were to enter a conflict it would be quick, expedient, and always open to terms of peace. Domestically, the government would ignore such trivialities as abortion, gay marriage, and homosexuals in the military, and concentrate on the important matters like keeping congress fiscally responsible.

    I think to summarize the ideal nation would be one built upon the fundamental values of human rights, the scientific truths of free market economy, and the elimination of religious and emotional dogma from the political arena.
    "I prefer a sane world where you are rewarded by providing people with something they want. Not arbitrarily rewarded in a status game that reminds me of chimpanzees." - nazgulnarsil

    Here I am with my empire
    Iíll bring you to your knees
    Ebb and flow with my desire
    Cause its all that youíve been taught to be

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