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"This is why we will never agree, John. You are an unabashed optimist – I consider myself an unabashed realist."
Yes, we are both totally unbending in our respective points of view. Remember, however, there is a fine line between realism and idealism. Who said that? Not sure. Maybe I just made it up.
You presume that everyone would be as altruistic as you – taking only what they need, creating food gardens for self-sufficiency, working with, and for, their fellow man.
Unfortunately, you forget that basic human nature is just not like that. Given the opportunity to freely take whatever they want, way too many people would take everything they could get their hands on to the detriment of others. Grocery stores would quickly be wiped out as would clothing stores, jewelry stores, furniture stores, etc. The world that you envision would quickly degenerate into absolute anarchy and would set civilization back to the stone age.
Yes, humans are built with greed. However, more important to humans are his well being and the welfare of his family and society in general. The reward that people inherently seek is image; it is respect and reverence from their community. A way of life without money offers moral growth. We will no longer be living in a materialistic society. You will not be able to tell the difference between a CEO or a janitor by the clothes they wear or by the homes they live in or by the cars they drive.
Yes, if you had lived in poverty all your life, you would welcome the opportunity in a way of life without money to grab more than you need. This is a problem; but it is a temporary problem. This country is capable of producing the necessities and common luxuries for everyone many times over.
Your suggestions, while altruistic and appealing, don’t take into account the ugliness of human nature. [/quote]
Yes, there is the human desire for power over others; but that is in today’s ugly world. Great leaders seek to guide others; not to control them. In a way of life without money, a person with power will be one who gains the esteem of others through his or her achievements which is the way it ought to be.
Yes, I used the word "utopian" to describe the idea of a way of life without money. Evidently, it was not a good idea. I thought by putting quotes around it; the reader would be warned not to take the word literally.
Today, the word "work" implies a means to "make a living". In a way of life without money, the meaning of the word "work" will change completely. Work will become a stairway to learning, creating and achieving our goals in life without any economic fear.
If I may quote Thomas Aquinas:
"There can be no joy of life without joy of work."
The best way to motivate people is to allow them to do the work they love to do. One of the goals of a way of life without money is to provide everyone with the opportunity to find a match between their abilities and the opportunity to serve society. If training is necessary, a free education is provided. Every effort will be made for each individual to find the work they love doing. There will be no pressure. I believe everyone has an ability or talent they want to use for the benefit of society. I believe gaining the proper balance between work and pleasure is a key to a rewarding life.
Yes, there may be a problem in getting the menial tasks done; but with people of below average intelligence, a menial job can be a challenge. In a way of life without money, cooperation will replace competition. Thus, the most menial task becomes easier when people work together. Also, technology is constantly eliminating menial tasks. In my essay, I offered "perks" as another option to consider.
In some respects, our economy will be the same. Our free enterprise system will remain in place as it is today; but no money will be exchanged. Profit will no longer be a factor and cooperation will replace competition. Government, industry and the people will work together as a team toward common goals.
Perhaps, the administration of a way of life without money is the toughest problem. As proposed in my essay, a web of "economic bodies" would be created; one for the federal, one for each state and one for each local level. These economic bodies will coordinate the economic traffic in our nation. They will interact with each other as much as modern technology will allow. A balance of supply and demand will be achieved taking every conceivable factor into consideration including conservation and our environment as well as the needs of the people and their craving for luxuries. In short, these economic bodies will be coordinating what is now our free enterprise system to fulfill the economic needs of our nation.
As I envision a way of of life without money, we will gain economic freedom in addition to and without infringement on our present freedoms. The common denominator between a way of life without money and socialism/communism/Marxism is economic equality which, in my opinion, we desperately need here in the USA. Economic equality will eliminate poverty. It will also eliminate materialism which warps our sense of value and corrupts our system. It will also reduce crime dramatically. Otherwise, our government will remain the same. The Democrats will still do battle with the Republicans.