Re: ZeitGeist Moving Forward
Hello everyone, and thank you very much for all you’ve done here. I haven’t posted much on these forums, but I have been following Chris and his blogs for years now. His Crash course and the information provided helped me as a young adult to understand my society and realize the huge transformations taking shape. That being said, I was directed here by way of the global forums at the Zeitgeist Movement, for which I am the Oregon state coordinator. I first want to say it is incredible to see the level of critical analysis here at these forums. Im glad Peter’s third film has been brought to attention here, and I was hoping to illuminate some misconceptions or misunderstandings regarding the tenets of a resource based economy,
Regarding the film, many of Aarons questions and/or rebuttals can be answered with the movie’s source guide. Peter has compiled extensive amounts of information from highly credible sources, such as the Mervas-Fowles study regarding stratification and violence. There are also two lectures of Peter’s (‘social pathology’ and ‘where are we going?’ free to watch on google) which detail some of the over arching generalizations made in ZMF, specifically how economic conditions play a role in disease and various forms of neurosis.
Now addressing Aarons’ post on the ‘centrally planned economy’
There seems to be an issue focusing on subjectivity, and the falsiability regarding science and social networks. There will be no ‘trial and error’ in human social systems, the example with the progressives and prohibition is a blatent misrepresentation of science. That was not purely science, there was an agenda with inputs from many religious and monetary angles. To claim that social systems are too chaotic and flexible to provide for is an unsubstantiated assumption. 100% accurate prediction of human behavior may be impossible, but its also irrelevant. The statistical analysis of various needs like energy, production, demand, demographics, resource availability are easily predicted. The amount of information required to compute these decisions would be almost impossible for humans to accomplish without computer assistance. Thus, we posit that using cybernetics to connect resource allocation, to transportation, to production, to distribution, to consumption is the most efficient way to manage resources and resources are the basis of human social systems if you delve deep enough. I mean, what are we without our incredible access to resources? From the first hunter gatherer sharpening a stone to cut meat, the scientific method coupled with technology (sharp stone) is what makes our lives better. Sure, you might opine that healthy social relationships are what make life better, but if you and your family/peers had no access to food or shelter or clothes, you can be assured that any healthy social relationship will be tossed out for ‘self-preservation’. Access to high quality resources without servitude will foster a happier culture, reduces stress, allows for more interactiona and personal development.
This is why TZM suggests that social problems are in fact technical problems, that are best solved via science and technology. If someone steals, rather than creating a judicial system to “write words on papers so that we can take this person from society, put them in a cage, and expect that to actually solve anything” why not provide what that person needs? Every personal level societal ill can be expressed from an angle of resource access (resources also include education), especially things like racism, theft, intergroup division, etc.
When Peter states ‘there is no logical alternative’ he is specifically referring to how we as a species manage our resources. If we continue on our path now, which requires wasteful consumption, along with monetary incentives for war, we are very likely going to be the first species to induce its own extinction. Im sure this is not news to anyone here familiar with the ‘three E’s”.
If you look at human understandings, it becomes clear that humans can only ‘make’ the wrong decisions. All the truthful, inarguable ‘facts’ about the universe can only be ‘discovered’, or ‘found out’ or ‘arrived to’. For instance, humans ‘made’ the wrong conclusion that the earth was the center of the universe. It was through the use of technology and science, that Galileo ‘discovered’ we humans were wrong. Natural laws of the universe exist regardless of human opinion, the only thing we humans can do is refine our ability to ‘discover’ these truths. Science has proven to be the best route. Science is simply an open stance towards truth, and by utiliizing technology to attain transparency, achieve accuracy, reduce bias and so forth, we can ‘arrive to’ the optimal conclusions for societal functioning.
This post could really go on for much longer, all I can really say is don’t let your first assumptions dictate your opinion of this movement. Take time to understand why we advocate such a ‘radical’ direction, it’s really not that extreme once you get into the meat of the issue, it almost becomes self evident after a while.