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Author Topic: Zeitgeist Addendum - The concept of a resource based economy  (Read 13236 times)

[leke]GrassNinja

Zeitgeist Addendum - The concept of a resource based economy
« on: September 02, 2010, 05:44:25 pm »
Hello peeps^^

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=7065205277695921912#

Hostile has posted this movie a while ago in the Thread for anything, but IMO, way too few people took notice of it.

The movie analyses our economic system and our society, based on money, so they call it the monetary system. Explaining what problems result from that outdated system.

While in the latter part of the movie, it starts to get really interesting, as they present the Venus Project, a concept of a totally new economic system and society.
The concept of a resource based economy:

"The term and meaning of a Resource-Based Economy was originated by Jacque Fresco. It is a system in which all goods and services are available without the use of money, credits, barter or any other system of debt or servitude. All resources become the common heritage of all of the inhabitants, not just a select few. The premise upon which this system is based is that the Earth is abundant with plentiful resource; our practice of rationing resources through monetary methods is irrelevant and counter productive to our survival.

Modern society has access to highly advanced technology and can make available food, clothing, housing and medical care; update our educational system; and develop a limitless supply of renewable, non-contaminating energy. By supplying an efficiently designed economy, everyone can enjoy a very high standard of living with all of the amenities of a high technological society."

-Taken from www.thevenusproject.com


So this would be a much better alternative to the crappy capitalistic system we got nowadays.

I strongly suggest you to watch the movie, it really is worth the time!


PS: If you don't understand it well in English, you may search Google Videos for a synchronisation or subtitles in your language, eventually there'll be one. If not, it helps alot to watch a version with English subtitles.
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RussG

Re: Zeitgeist Addendum - The concept of a resource based economy
« Reply #1 on: September 02, 2010, 06:22:14 pm »
Yeah, makes you think.

Not too many weeks ago I met this dude at a bar. He was in his 40's and had sacrifised all his life driving some shit truck from countryside to countryside, from city to city, from country to country. It's some family business and they do all types of countryside jobs. Just same boring shit year in, year out. He wasn't happy.

I had just seen this document and I tried to have a constructive conversation with him about "what if money didn't exist?". He just couldn't understand or internalize what I was talking about. Clearly he had never even thought about such things. Pretty soon I understood that it's no use trying to talk to him about this, as he turned out to be a douche as he twisted my words and thought I was suggesting that he didn't have money. So he tried to start a fight telling me he'll beat the crap outta me like he did to his ex-wife.

I realized how brainwashed and unhappy a man can be.

Also I've been completely broke the whole last month, and I've seriously thought if I should learn how to get food from outdoors. As in, I wouldn't use any money whatsoever on food. How cool would it be to hunt rabbits and bears with a self-made bow lol.
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Hostile

Re: Zeitgeist Addendum - The concept of a resource based economy
« Reply #2 on: September 02, 2010, 06:29:48 pm »
Yea, I hear you, RussG. I too have been thinking about this pretty much since I saw the movie. Really interesting subject to think - and talk about. Sadly, most of people it's pretty useless to try to talk about those things, since (like RussG said) they don't seem to understand it really, and takes it the wrong way.

I sure don't wanna spend my whole life trying to collect money, that I really don't need that much. When Im old, I don't wanna think back my life, and see, that all I did was working just so I can live to be idle and wait for time to kill me.

E: I also found the talk about all that energy stuff really interesting. Just before I watched that movie, I saw Thor saying something about that we yet can't get enough energy out of sun, air or water. I might remember wrong tho.
« Last Edit: September 02, 2010, 06:35:46 pm by Hostile »
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Tafka

Re: Zeitgeist Addendum - The concept of a resource based economy
« Reply #3 on: September 02, 2010, 06:46:00 pm »
I watched some part of that movie, had to go. But I remember one Estonian ex-politician and good business man talking about that subject to small bunch of people (40?) in some place small time ago. I was there listening, and there was some other video too, which was shorter, like 10 minutes, but pretty entertaining and same thing made shorter. Financial crisis and all that money making scheme. It was interesting and same here, I'd like to talk about it sometimes. Nobody to talk to, as-well.

Ruki

Re: Zeitgeist Addendum - The concept of a resource based economy
« Reply #4 on: September 02, 2010, 07:30:10 pm »
Take the economy and politics away and we are cavemen.
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[leke]GrassNinja

Re: Zeitgeist Addendum - The concept of a resource based economy
« Reply #5 on: September 02, 2010, 07:51:23 pm »
Take the economy and politics away and we are cavemen.

Take the economy and politics away and we're free.
There's no need for this system anymore, as it is somekind of very clever slavery.
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Wander

Re: Zeitgeist Addendum - The concept of a resource based economy
« Reply #6 on: September 02, 2010, 07:54:44 pm »
Did anyone else notice that the 2nd most related video to this subject on the whole of Google Video's is this one? :P
http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=7065205277695921912#docid=8815587647189809806

Anyway I stopped watching the movie about 8 seconds after it started, because I noticed how long it was. I might come back to it later, when I have more time though. It's an interesting subject from the point of view that our current economic system doesn't work. And indeed, it has it's flaws. However, I don't think a system without any 'value rating', AKA money, would work at all in a modern society.

Our current system knows two different ways to make a living (money). One is to supply resources, the other is to supply services. Without money, it would be very difficult to appreciate different services differently. One service is harder to supply than the other and will take more of your time. However, it may still be quite essential for modern society. How is this new system going to make sure that all those services will keep existing?
This is just a very basic question I have, and since the movie is 2 hours long, I'm sure they'll have an answer to it. However, will it stretch far enough? Will it meet demands better than the actual system we have now? Think about a multitude of different things, e.g. government, game industry, transport, barbershop, city cleaning, etc. etc.

As I said, I might watch the movie later and come back for a more informed reply.
For now I couldn't resist replying at all though, because of this: :D
http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=7065205277695921912#docid=8815587647189809806

Tafka

Re: Zeitgeist Addendum - The concept of a resource based economy
« Reply #7 on: September 02, 2010, 07:58:00 pm »
Take the economy and politics away and we are cavemen.

Take the economy and politics away and we're free.
There's no need for this system anymore, as it is somekind of very clever slavery.
I agree. In such world order (democracy) there is too hard to make any reforms quickly, and that sucks. In one way democracy is really bad. Everything is tried to be made so equal. There should be a huge load of reforms made, but there wont be because everyone thinks different, and there might be conflicts etc. when made.

pelya

Re: Zeitgeist Addendum - The concept of a resource based economy
« Reply #8 on: September 02, 2010, 08:03:57 pm »
Mmm, communism again? No thanks.

Without the money (or some other considerably sensible mechanism of motivation) noone will work at all, just like it was in USSR (well we did work when there was war or Stalin repressions, that's just another kind of motivation). Noone will produce anything if they'll know it will just be taken from them, and their personal level of living won't immediately raise.

When the money is backed up by some resources (gold, diamonds, ocean shells for some tribes) the government just cannot produce more money when they're out of resources. In modern world we have other kind of resources (USB flash sticks? Or ipods? Seems to me a good replacement for a paper money).

Anyway the whole system was working okay until the government gets too greedy, and starts another war or discovers another epidemic to get some reason to produce more money (we'll get cat or rabbit grippe next year according to Chinese calendar :P ).
In EU it doesn't work that easy because there is no centralized authority and the laws are applied somehow, so no single person or party got all the power at once. So they tend to be less corrupted after all.
In other countries (Nigeria, USA to some extent) there is single ruler/king/small government party/whatever that produce as much money as they want. Plus big part of the world depends on US dollar, so US can produce lot of money and dump them to China to get back resources (in the form of counterfeit Adidias shoes, but whatever - it's better than a paper). So when they overdid that the dollar got dumped, and we've got a financial crisis.

However globalization they're talking about is a good thing, especially if it remove all our governments, and replace them with a computer maybe? Well it's not very complicated if you take into account that the only useful thing government really does is taking the money from the treasury and distributing it onto the different social needs. Can be done in a single Excel sheet hehe. Another thing that government does is writing the laws and applying them, that can be replaced by some kind of computerized democracy, like "Send SMS to number XXX if you like that law" 8) . As for applying the laws, well dunno, you still need a police and judges, so that part will stay corrupted  ::) .

However, I don't think a system without any 'value rating', AKA money, would work at all in a modern society.
The same thing I wrote about, but you've replied faster.

I agree. In such world order (democracy) there is too hard to make any reforms quickly, and that sucks.
Count more votes for people with higher IQ? Or to people that actually work and produce something? There should be some discrimination in the society, we cannot live without it (or rather we can' but it will get very boring).

[SPOILER]Now, waiting for Sak's smart and grammatically perfect reply
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[leke]GrassNinja

Re: Zeitgeist Addendum - The concept of a resource based economy
« Reply #9 on: September 02, 2010, 08:27:58 pm »
Well, pelya, did you actually watch the movie?
As I mentioned, it's definitely worth the time, and it practically answers all questions (and if not, you may search for further information on their website)

It's hard to discuss with you if you haven't seen the movie yet, because it takes some effort to get away from the thinking we got today. Like money is the only motivation to work. Yes, in the current system it is, as it is the main motivation to everything and everyone.

But imagine a system that works without money, but still provides the satisfaction of all your needs. You get all the goods for free.

Don't you think that in such a society, there would be very different values and motivations?

The way you think and feel, what values you've got, it all depends on your environment that you've grown up in. Also, education would be pretty different from what it is now, because now, most things you have to learn are for the purpose of understanding the monetary system and how to function in it.
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Sakmongkol

Re: Zeitgeist Addendum - The concept of a resource based economy
« Reply #10 on: September 02, 2010, 08:43:22 pm »
Now, waiting for Sak's smart and grammatically perfect reply
You'll have to wait a little longer as I must admit I still haven't watched the movie so I am hesitant to write a longer post on the subject yet. =)

But from what I have read here, especially the part Grassie quoted from the website, it does indeed sound somewhat like communism. Communism in theory is good, but as we know from history, it is very difficult if not impossible to make such a system work in practice. At least it would require a huge effort from all the developed countries, and I think some form of centralized control system would still be needed to prevent different kinds of people from abusing the system. Lazy people but also greedy people. I can't imagine how it could really work, but maybe some wiser person can, and probably has. I'm looking forward to finding some answers in the movie, which I will hopefully watch this weekend. (Yeye I remember I said the same thing last week... =()
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[leke]GrassNinja

Re: Zeitgeist Addendum - The concept of a resource based economy
« Reply #11 on: September 02, 2010, 09:00:20 pm »
But from what I have read here, especially the part Grassie quoted from the website, it does indeed sound somewhat like communism. Communism in theory is good, but as we know from history, it is very difficult if not impossible to make such a system work in practice.

Yes, it does indeed seem to be very similar to the principles of communism to me, too.

And yes, it is very close to impossible to make such a system work in the circumstances we've had and still have. But if you analyse it, the reasons why it wouldn't work are a cause of the monetary system.

[...]to prevent different kinds of people from abusing the system. Lazy people but also greedy people. [...]

There would be nothing to abuse, and no reason for greed, as there would be everything available to everyone for free.

It doesn't matter if there are lazy people, as there would only be needed 5% of the worlds population to maintain the whole system. And with the values that would be uphold in such a society, there would be definitely enough people willing to do the job.
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Thor

Re: Zeitgeist Addendum - The concept of a resource based economy
« Reply #12 on: September 02, 2010, 09:18:57 pm »
Take the economy and politics away and we are cavemen.

This.

To do the right decisions in the future, you need to understand history

-------

Communism, socialism, the solution? Eh?

Giving a huge effort for the developing countries should be done, but seriously, there should be an another solution than ridiculous ideologies like communism. We have already seen in the Europe, what would happen. Also, I would like to remind, that even all the money and economic things would be cleared out the humans stay with their nations. And when the ascendant ideology would be as ridiculous communism, or socialism in the same time nationalism will grow and grow. And what happens when we associate a socialist and a nationalist? The new Hitler. Oh, and now the developing countries aren't alone in the derangement, the Europe will be again in it like it was in 1939-1945.

The nowaday society is just fine, we have zero arguments (I'll try to find someday time to watch that movie, though I'm pretty busy nowadays and the movie is probably just a propaganda by uneducated and hippy people) to change, for example to a society without money and economy. A fact is, that everything would just fall with a such system. Why? Because for example science wouldn't work without money and economics. And where do we need science? For example the medical science. Yeah where do we need that.. Nowadays there are many welfare states, and if and when the developing continues there will be more and more. Of course it needs furtherance from the biggest economic countries - and that's why international association should pressure them to do some changes.

However, may the hippies live in the utopian and unrealistic world, I, capitalists, and other wise humans was their ideology whatever live fine with this good nowaday economic system.
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[leke]GrassNinja

Re: Zeitgeist Addendum - The concept of a resource based economy
« Reply #13 on: September 02, 2010, 09:29:33 pm »
Take the economy and politics away and we are cavemen.

This.

To do the right decisions in the future, you need to understand history

-------

Communism, socialism, the solution? Eh?

Giving a huge effort for the developing countries should be done, but seriously, there should be an another solution than ridiculous ideologies like communism. We have already seen in the Europe, what would happen. Also, I would like to remind, that even all the money and economic things would be cleared out the humans stay with their nations. And when the ascendant ideology would be as ridiculous communism, or socialism in the same time nationalism will grow and grow. And what happens when we associate a socialist and a nationalist? The new Hitler. Oh, and now the developing countries aren't alone in the derangement, the Europe will be again in it like it was in 1939-1945.

The nowaday society is just fine, we have zero arguments (I'll try to find someday time to watch that movie, though I'm pretty busy nowadays and the movie is probably just a propaganda by uneducated and hippy people) to change, for example to a society without money and economy. A fact is, that everything would just fall with a such system. Why? Because for example science wouldn't work without money and economics. And where do we need science? For example the medical science. Yeah where do we need that.. Nowadays there are many welfare states, and if and when the developing continues there will be more and more. Of course it needs furtherance from the biggest economic countries - and that's why international association should pressure them to do some changes.

However, may the hippies live in the utopian and unrealistic world, I, capitalists, and other wise humans was their ideology whatever live fine with this good nowaday economic system.

Hahaha. Seriously, it made me laugh at some parts^^

But on a serious note, it took you half an hour to post... this?!

I won't go into your post any more, as it is just ridicoulus.
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Sakmongkol

Re: Zeitgeist Addendum - The concept of a resource based economy
« Reply #14 on: September 02, 2010, 10:13:56 pm »
The new Hitler.
Hitler card, you lose the game.

But seriously, if you want to go into the Hitler-subject a little more, his ideology is called national socialism, but was he really a nationalist? He definitely wasn't a socialist as you should know. But that's what he wanted people to think and he succeeded quite well in that. In reality his ideology was closer to some form of mysticist/occultist social Darwinism. It had very little to do with nationalism in the modern sense as Hitler's ideas of 'race' and 'nation' were not based in any kind of actual science or existing nations, it was all just mythology. Today nationalism shouldn't really be a big problem, and I don't think it can be anymore with all the globalization and multiculturalism. Real, dangerous nationalists are a fading minority in the modern world.

Then you draw the conlusion 'communism has never worked before -> communism will never work' which is ridiculous. Knowing history and learning from mistakes is healthy, but making such conclusions is absurd. First of all you should know that real communism as theorized by Marx has never been practiced as an official ideology of any government. Leninism and Stalinism and Maoism are completely different ideologies. Then you should learn some basic logical thinking.

The rest of your post is just good entertainment and doesn't really deserve any counterarguments. Have fun in the capitalist utopia.
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Ruki

Re: Zeitgeist Addendum - The concept of a resource based economy
« Reply #15 on: September 02, 2010, 10:42:49 pm »
Take the economy and politics away and we are cavemen.

Take the economy and politics away and we're free.
There's no need for this system anymore, as it is somekind of very clever slavery.
If by being free you are refering to chaos and colapse of order, then sure. Idealistic systems with "you give me, I give you in return" or "lets all help there today, and they will help at my place tomorrow" will never work because of the human nature. Not everyone is equal in intelectual and capability terms, so why would somebody have less if he is able to get more. Have you read Animal Farm? You should know what happens once the "current order" is removed and there are efforts to create a new order. Besides, without system, how about laws, crime and punishment and all? It can't be that everyone is everyone's judge. Sure the criminal might not be needed when you have everything you need, but there are still crimes out of other reasons, like jealousy for example. And how about the social outcasts - pedophiles, rapers, psychos, socyiopaths etc.? If you are to establish some comittee to vote about it, you have just put certain people to certain positions. Which will eventually turn into a modern system.

Of course an order where you would trade each other with vegetables, help with what you do the best and so on would be really awesome. But it will never work. It never did. Spending time debating about it is pretty pointless as I have debated about it several times already, always ending into never ending debate. Somebody will insist it can work, somebody will insist it won't work. I'm not a hippy so I believe it won't work... They have created a light bulb with unlimited working time period. Companies which produce "normal" light bulbs bought the patent. This is how the world works. Wolves and sheeps. Without it we are all just a bunch of sheeps.
« Last Edit: September 02, 2010, 10:57:27 pm by Ruki »
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DarkCharlie

Re: Zeitgeist Addendum - The concept of a resource based economy
« Reply #16 on: September 02, 2010, 11:12:35 pm »
I must admit these people are very (very!) good speakers.

They present everything in simple and logical steps to get to the right results.

The problem is that even though these steps look logical, they often are not. They (ab)use the word debt and the effect it has on most people.

The money was created in order to keep information about a debt. Consider that an economy consist of only two people. I sell 5 eggs to you for $5. You get 5 eggs from me (the actual value) and you give me back $5. The $5 actually means that you owe me a value of 5 eggs. If there were more people in the economy, I could get for example rolls from them, give them the $ I got from you and thus tell everybody you don't owe the $ to me anymore but to the person I traded with.

This concept works fine until I get a counter value in a short time. But if you repay me in a longer time (year, 10 years or even longer), I will want you to give me more - as a revenue for the waiting - an interest. You will have to work harder to pay me back.

If many people owe me this way, I could actually make living only out of the interest - becoming a bank. If I want to earn more money, I can offer a service to other people - they can give their $ to me (thus I will owe them), I will take their money and lend it to someone else with a higher interest. A problem might occur though if the people want to withdraw their $, as I actually don't have any (I lent everything). The solution is to keep a part of the money as a reserve (yes, THAT evil reserve mentioned in the movie) if anyone wanted their money back.

If you buy something by taking a loan, you actually consume your future money. If you consume and borrow so much that your income won't ever cover the borrowed money + interest, you bankrupt. No matter if you are a worker, a bank or a state.

For those who didn't read until here - yes, money = debt. But it's obvious and not really evil.

The perfect society relies on the fact that the machines can produce everything we need for a happy life. Moreover, they state that the current technology is capable of that. As a programmer, I can assure you it is not - for example no program can drive a car better than a human (even if the human is drunk :) ). They also seem rely on a common misconception - that machines don't make mistakes.

Even though the movie impresses us with the big numbers of energy flowing from the Sun, the current technology can catch just a tiny percent of what would actually be effective and enough.

Everything else I wanted to say, has already been said in previous posts. Communism is a nice idea and it might sound real from a mouth of a gifted speaker. But that doesn't make it real.

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Sakmongkol

Re: Zeitgeist Addendum - The concept of a resource based economy
« Reply #17 on: September 02, 2010, 11:37:15 pm »
Besides, without system, how about laws, crime and punishment and all? It can't be that everyone is everyone's judge.
I thought the discussion was about the economic system. Disbanding the current economic system wouldn't necessarily destroy judicial systems and governments and such. The problem with the current 'system' (by which I mean the whole system) is that different parts of the system which should work independently are interfering with each other. Economy interferes with politics and judicial structures resulting in corruption, politics interferes with science resulting in politicization and so on. Ultimately the motivator of this kind of interference is usually money, which leads us to tracking the cause of the problem to the economic system. Obviously refining the economic system would inevitably affect all the other parts of the system too, but it wouldn't mean total destruction and chaos.

If you are to establish some comittee to vote about it, you have just put certain people to certain positions. Which will eventually turn into a modern system.
I'd like to think otherwise, because to my understanding the modern system is not based on agreements between all people, but only a select few. They have worked towards this system for decades if not centuries, and the aforementioned interference and corruption is used to reinforce the structure and keep the power and wealth to those certain people through inheritance. This kind of system resists change because to make decisions you need money, and money is not given to those who are not wanted in the decision-making. For a real change to happen the whole system would need a fresh start, and by getting rid of money an equal starting point could be provided for everyone. Most likely the resulting system would look nothing like the current one.
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"If you understood everything I say, you'd be me!"

~ Miles Davis

٩(͡๏̯͡๏)۶

Re: Zeitgeist Addendum - The concept of a resource based economy
« Reply #18 on: September 03, 2010, 04:16:47 am »
People are idiots and need to be controlled, otherwise we would've whined about the system sooner.
There was no riots, when they took away the possibility to change money into gold.
Right now, we can't get a better system without a little help from nature, so there's no point whining or even speculating about that.
Now the question of happiness is other thing. Not everyone even seek happiness. And you can be happy with or without money. But you can trust me that the change of system wont come any time soon, because there are so many frauds(with power) that depend on the system.
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[leke]GrassNinja

Re: Zeitgeist Addendum - The concept of a resource based economy
« Reply #19 on: September 03, 2010, 04:43:16 pm »
If you consume and borrow so much that your income won't ever cover the borrowed money + interest, you bankrupt. No matter if you are a worker, a bank or a state.

This is true for natural people, but not for a state of a bank.
These two won't go bankrupt unless enough people would want their money back at the same time. But otherwise, they can still go on, as long as noone distrusts them, so they'll get new money.

For example: The American National debt amounts to over $13 trillion, increasing at an average of over $4 billion per day. While their GDP in 2009 was $14.256 billion.

The perfect society relies on the fact that the machines can produce everything we need for a happy life. Moreover, they state that the current technology is capable of that. As a programmer, I can assure you it is not - for example no program can drive a car better than a human (even if the human is drunk :) ). They also seem rely on a common misconception - that machines don't make mistakes.

Even though the movie impresses us with the big numbers of energy flowing from the Sun, the current technology can catch just a tiny percent of what would actually be effective and enough.

I do know that a lot of the technology they mention isn't as effective, or doesn't even exist, yet. But we're not talking about the current state of technology, but the potential it has. And considering the technological progress we've made in the past, this potential is very high.
And the technolgical process will continue even faster if we get rid of that monetary system, as there will never be the question again: "Do we have enough money?"
Instead the question would be: "Do we have the resources?" And there are plenty of resources.
And you have to know that the effort on the research of these technologies isn't too big either, because their not profitable.


@ Ruki: As you've stated yourself, there won't be a lot of crimes anymore without the existance of money. And yes, there are still some crimes that might occur. For example a person killing another. Nowadays we just arrest criminals, without considering what lead them to do what they did.
It would be far more effective to analyse the causes of crimes, and then search for a solution to these causes(and of course send the criminal to therapy). For this would prevent any further crimes commited for that cause.

I'm sure you know what sick grievances we have in this system, and if you can accept that, and just live your happy life.. well, that's good for you.

But I for my part, I don't want to accept that! In my opinion, almost any alternative would be better than what we've got now! Of course these alternatives aren't perfect either, but we just have to replace this totally crappy system with a less crappy one.

I do know that it won't be possible to just replace it outta nothing. But I hope that people will be open for something new as soon as the current system collapses. And it will collapse.
« Last Edit: September 03, 2010, 04:55:03 pm by [leke]GrassNinja »
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