Archive for January, 2002

The future will be different

Thursday, January 31st, 2002

Like the Wright’s aeroplane, the synergic sciences can solve enormous problems for humankind. And, like the Wright’s aeroplane, the synergic sciences can bring many positive and wonderful changes to our lives, but the “how” will be very different from the way things are done today. The synergic sciences present us with a remarkably new view of humanity and of our human potential. This new view may challenge many of your current beliefs and some of your basic values. But this is good news, because without a major change in beliefs and basic values our human problems are not solvable. (01/31/02)
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A Problem in Design

Thursday, January 31st, 2002

In general (it can be said with reasonable justification) natural selection works on this principle, “If it doesn’t work, do it LESS.” Any gene that works against reproductive success tends to be eliminated from the gene pool–is found less and less in the gene pool until it finally disappears. Doing less of what doesn’t work is a principle that is practically instinctive to the human designer. But when it comes to our social organizations, the people of our culture follow a very different principle: If it doesn’t work, do it MORE. … If spending a billion dollars doesn’t win the war on drugs, spend two billion. If spending two billion doesn’t work, spend four. Sound familiar? … If hiring a thousand cops doesn’t stop crime in your city, hire 2000. If hiring 2000 doesn’t work, hire 4000. … If sentencing criminals to 10 years doesn’t work, sentence them to 20 years. If 20 years doesn’t work, sentence them to 50–to 500, a thousand! … If building a thousand prisons doesn’t work, build 2000. If building 2000 doesn’t work, build 4000. … If assigning two hours of homework doesn’t work, assign three. If assigning three doesn’t work, assign four. (01/31/02)


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What do we do with the energy ?

Thursday, January 31st, 2002

If you need to get to the other side of a mountain, climbing over the top is a lot harder than walking around. Just because you can do it doesn’t mean it is really a good idea. You get to the other side exhausted, and then find you need to go past another one before you are fully rested. And because you went over the last time, you feel compelled to say that this is the way it must be done? I’m seeing this, in the grandiose schemes to build large numbers of big wind turbines, to cover vast areas with solar panels, or build new kinds of nuclear plants. All this great effort, to meet needs that can be met far more simply and reliably. You don’t need more than a stick to herd animals, and a basket to gather wild plant foods. Shelter can be of skins and thatch, very easy. You really don’t even need metals most of the time. There doesn’t have to be this great effort expended to meet day to day needs. Sometimes it could be worthwhile to spend a little more energy on metals and technology, for emergencies, for occasional bigger efforts. But people are flabbergasted at the idea of being like this. Walk around the mountains? Not see the fantastic view, and feel like the master of all? Well, go ahead and exhaust yourself for a fleeting illusion of power. Because that is all it is. People are using energy like a drug, it makes them high, makes them feel good, in control. But it is all fleeting illusion, no reality. When people invest in these schemes to make more energy, and keep a semblance of their present life, they are heading up the slopes again. I’ll walk around, thanks. If you would allow me and mine to cut loose, and stop dragging us with you. (01/31/02)
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The Needs of the Many Outweigh the Needs of the Few

Wednesday, January 30th, 2002

The human body is a community of 40 trillion individual cells. The individual cells are organized synergically to be interdependent upon each other. They cannot separate themselves from the body as community. The survival of the cells depends on the survival of the body. The needs and safety of the body precedes the needs and safety of the individual cells. Sometimes individual cells are injured or even sacrificed to protect and insure the survival of the body as a whole. The needs and safety of the community of cells takes precedence over the needs and safety of the cells as individuals. … With the discovery that humanity is an interdependent species comes the realization that we humans can no longer separate ourselves from community. Humanity as community is larger and contains humanity as individuals. The needs and safety of humanity as community must precede the needs and safety of humanity as individuals. (01/30/02)


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Operating Manual For Spaceship Earth

Wednesday, January 30th, 2002

R. Buckminster Fuller wrote: “I have visited more than three hundred universities and colleges around the world as an invited and appointed professor and have found an increasing number of students who understand all that we have been reviewing. They are comprehending increasingly that elimination of war can only be realized through a design and invention revolution. When it is realized by society that wealth is as much everybody’s as is the air and sunlight, it no longer will be rated as a personal handout for anyone to accept a high standard of living in the form of an annual research and development fellowship. … I have owned successively, since boyhood, fifty-four automobiles. I will never own another. I have not given up driving. I began to leave my cars at airports-never or only infrequently getting back to them. My new pattern requires renting new cars at the airports as needed. I am progressively ceasing to own things, not on a political-schism basis, as for instance Henry George’s ideology, but simply on a practical basis. Possession is becoming progressively burdensome and wasteful and therefore obsolete.”  (01/30/02)


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Towards Sustainable Society

Wednesday, January 30th, 2002

Arthur Noll writes: “Sustainability is a matter of not taking resources faster than they renew. You cannot cut trees faster than they grow, or net fish, or burn fossil fuels. You cannot pollute faster than pollution breaks down. There is a balance of resources, using too much energy to take resources tilts the balance away from sustainability. … The societies of the earth are nearly totally dependent on fossil fuels that they burn far faster than they are replaced, and are polluting areas far faster than the pollution can be broken down. And in size, the situation is far more grim than ever in the past. In the past, these cities were isolated cases, the people probably died in large numbers, but they could also flee to places that were greener. This time, most all the world is involved. There is no place favorable to the life of people that isn’t crammed way past sustainable carrying capacity, we will look at this in more detail in the chapter on agriculture.” (01/30/02)


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Universal Disarmament

Tuesday, January 29th, 2002

Humans develop evermore powerful knowledge and therefore evermore powerful tools. When tools are used to harm other humans they are called weapons. Since human knowledge can grow without limit then tools themselves can be made without limit. And limitless tools can will produce limitless weapons. … And, limitless weapons (progress) combined with leveraged adversity (warfare) must by all definitions and understanding of science produce human extinction. … The only rational solution is Universal Disarmament. … During a period of moratorium, all humans would be expected to surrender all weapons into the custody of the Life Trust Guardians. Once the moratorium expires, the possession of any weapon outside of a permitted location is prohibited, and is by definition an adversary event. The Life Trust Guardians would dispense Containment Officers to confiscate the weapon or weapons and take those responsible into custody.  (01/29/02)
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Changing Our Minds…

Tuesday, January 29th, 2002

At the present time, there are six billion people on this planet
pursuing a vision that is devouring the earth. That’s our problem. Our
problem is not pollution. Our problem is not consumerism. Our problem
is not capitalist greed. Our problem is not conservative selfishness or
liberal utopianism. Our problem is not lack of leadership. Our problem
is a world-devouring vision that six billion people are pursuing. Now
what can we do about this vision? We can’t legislate it away or vote it
away or organize it away or even shoot it away. We can only teach it away. If the world is saved, it will be saved by people with changed minds, people with a new vision. It will not be saved by old minds with new programs. (01/29/02)
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Running Out of Oil — What will it mean ?

Tuesday, January 29th, 2002

Here in the U.S. the problem we face is that no preparation at all has been made for this transition almost upon us. We will face a terrible wrenching change in our lives in the very near future and since the world is dependent upon the same cheap energy supply, the world will undergo a similar wrenching experience. We may be looking at an economic depression going on for a number of years as we struggle to accommodate to a new reality. The world, much poorer than we, will most likely have an even worse time of it. The Green Revolution has been based upon new and better plant species which require larger amounts of petroleum-based fertilizer and pesticides, ample machine driven irrigation, farm machinery and transportation. Now, as one writer put it, we are going to see the Green Revolution run in reverse. No one knows exactly what will happen, but the most likely scenario is that the world’s population will continue its climb to a final peak, followed by starvation as North Korea now experiencing, then followed by a decimation through disease of the weakened and vulnerable survivors. (01/29/02)
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Bill Gates Decides to Help the World

Monday, January 28th, 2002

Bill Gates says his own dream is to “get developed world’s health conditions to be a human right that you take for granted.” Will he live to see that happen? Probably not, he concedes. But the prospect of smaller victories keeps his spirits up. “You can’t address all the political, social and environmental issues at once,” he says. “But with tools like vaccination you can reduce people’s suffering.” As health improves and birthrates decline, social and economic progress almost always follow. As Gates likes to say, better health is an end in itself, but it has countless virtuous side effects. It’s a lever, in other words, and he’s got $24 billion pushing it. (01/28/02)

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If you love children…

Monday, January 28th, 2002

You will want to visit the humans at this website. They envision a world where: -Every child is wanted, welcomed, loved, and valued. -Every family is prepared for and supported in practicing the art and science of nurturing children. -Adults respect children and honor childhood. -Children joyfully participate in the vital life of family and community. -And where dynamic, resilient, life-honoring cultures flourish.  (01/28/02)
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Security or Martial Law ?

Monday, January 28th, 2002

The Pentagon is likely to create a new, four-star command to oversee the armed forces role in homeland defense. Vice President Richard B. Cheney, appearing on ABC’s “This Week” yesterday, said having “a commander in chief on a regional basis responsible for the U.S. I think makes sense, I think it’s a good idea.” The command will:  ïErect a missile-defense system to protect against warheads carrying chemical, biological or nuclear weapons. ïEnsure military personnel know how to properly apprehend suspected terrorists. ïSet up command centers and communication networks to interact with federal and local law enforcement agencies. ïProvide security for critical infrastructure such as ports, and assist local officials in responding to attacks involving weapons of mass destruction.  (01/28/02)
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