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← Economic Calculation in a Natural Law / RBE, Peter Joseph, The Zeitgeist Movement, Berlin

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  1. Hello, my name is Franky.
    I work also with

  2. an organization called The Zeitgeist
    Movement as you already know.
  3. I would like to
    welcome everybody
  4. from far and wide; everybody did come.
    Thank you very much.
  5. I would like to take this
    opportunity to especially thank
  6. the teams of The
    Zeitgeist Movement.
  7. Teams meaning the Linguistic Team,
    the Web Team, the Technology Team,
  8. the Activism Team and also
    the Project Team that
  9. coordinated this project.
  10. The whole German chapter
    did a great job
  11. with establishing this
    event within a month.
  12. I would like to thank
    everybody personally.
  13. Good to see you here.
  14. I think Peter Joseph doesn't
    need any introduction.
  15. I think everybody
    here knows who he is.
  16. So, short and
    precise: thank you.
  17. I hand the microphone
    over to Peter.
  18. [Sustained Applause]
  19. You can turn this mic off since
    I'm not going to use it.
  20. Ah, so it's the other mic.
  21. How's everybody doing? [Audience in unison]
    - Good!
  22. I really appreciate
    you all being here.
  23. I want to thank Franky
    and the Berlin team
  24. for moving so fast;
    it's really phenomenal.
  25. Having put on many events myself over
    the years, it's not an easy task.
  26. I'm always reminded when
    I travel these days,
  27. that The Zeitgeist Movement is truly a
    global phenomenon at this stage, right?
  28. No matter where any of
    us end up on the planet,
  29. you don't have to go very far to find
    friends who share similar values
  30. in this pursuit of
    a better world.
  31. The title of this talk
    is "Economic Calculation
  32. in a Natural Law/Resource-Based
    Economy (NLRBE)."
  33. For the past five years or so
  34. The Zeitgeist Movement has put out
    quite a bit of educational media
  35. with respect to its advocation,
  36. and the learning curve
    has been rather intense.
  37. There's been a
    tendency to generalize
  38. with respect to how things
    actually work technically.
  39. This is the contents
    of this presentation.
  40. In Part I and two
    I'm going to refine
  41. the inherent flaws of the
    current market model
  42. regarding why we need to change
  43. along with relaying
    the vast prospects
  44. we now have to solve
    vast problems,
  45. improve efficiency, and
    generate a form of abundance
  46. that could meet all human needs.
  47. The active term which has gained
    popularity in the last couple years
  48. is called "post-scarcity,"
  49. even though that word is a little
    misleading semantically as I'll explain.
  50. In Part III, I'll work to
    show how this new society
  51. generally works in its structure
    and basic calculation.
  52. I think most people on the planet
    know that there is something
  53. very wrong with the current
    socioeconomic tradition.
  54. They just don't know how to
    think about the solution,
  55. or more accurately, how to
    arrive at such solutions.
  56. Until that is addressed, we're
    not going to get very far.
  57. On that note, in a number of
    months, a rather substantial text
  58. is going to be put into
    circulation, available for free
  59. and also in print
    form or download form
  60. at cost (it's a
    non-profit expression).
  61. This will be finished hopefully
    by the first of the year
  62. and will be the definitive
    expression (in the condensed form)
  63. of the Movement, something
    that's been long overdue.
  64. It's called "The Zeitgeist Movement
    Defined" and it will serve as both
  65. an orientation and
    a reference guide.
  66. It will have probably over a
    thousand footnotes and sources.
  67. Once finished, an educational
    video series will be put out
  68. in about 20 parts to produce the
    material along with a workbook
  69. to help people who want to learn how
    to talk about these ideas because
  70. we basically need more people
    on an international level
  71. to be able to communicate,
    as I try to do.
  72. It's a very important thing, and I
    think the future of the Movement
  73. rests in part on our capacity
    to create a well-oiled
  74. international educational machine
    with consistent language
  75. coupled with real design projects
    and their interworkings.
  76. Part I: Why are we even here?
  77. Is this type of
    large-scale change-
  78. what the Movement
    advocates- really needed?
  79. Can't we just work to fix
    and improve the current
  80. economic model, keeping the
    general framework of money,
  81. trade, profit, power,
    property and the like?
  82. The short answer is
    a definitive "No,"
  83. as I'm going to explain.
  84. If there's any real interest
    to solve the growing
  85. public health and
    environmental crises at hand
  86. this system needs to go.
  87. Market capitalism, no matter
    how you wish to regulate it
  88. or not regulate it, depending
    on who you speak with,
  89. contains severe structural flaws
  90. which will always, to
    one degree or another,
  91. perpetuate environmental
    abuse and destabilization,
  92. and human disregard and
    caustic inequality.
  93. Put another way, environmental
    and social imbalance
  94. and a basic lack of sustainability
    both environmentally and culturally
  95. is inherent to the market economy,
    and it always has been.
  96. The difference between capitalism
    today and say, the 16th century
  97. is that our technological
    ability to rapidly accelerate
  98. and amplify this market process
  99. has brought to the surface consequences
    which simply couldn't be understood
  100. or even recognized during
    those early primitive times.
  101. In other words, the basic
    principles of market economics
  102. have always been
    intrinsically flawed.
  103. It has taken just this long for
    the severity of those flaws
  104. to come to fruition.
    Let me explain a little bit.
  105. From an environmental
    standpoint,
  106. market perception simply
    cannot view the Earth
  107. as anything but an inventory
    for exploitation.
  108. Why? Because the entire
    existence of the market economy
  109. has to do with keeping
    money in circulation
  110. at a rate which can keep as many
    people employed as possible.
  111. In other words, the world economy
    is powered by constant consumption.
  112. If consumption levels drop,
    so does labor demand,
  113. and so does the available purchasing
    power of the general population
  114. and hence, so does demand for goods
    as money isn't there to buy them.
  115. This cyclical consumption
    is the lifeblood
  116. of our economic existence.
  117. The very idea of being
    conservative or truly efficient
  118. with the Earth's finite
    resources in any way
  119. is structurally
    counterproductive
  120. to this needed driving
    force of consuming.
  121. If you don't believe
    that, ask yourself why
  122. virtually every life support system
    on this planet is in decline.
  123. We have an ongoing loss of topsoil,
    ever-depleting fresh water,
  124. atmospheric and climate
    destabilization,
  125. a loss of oxygen-producing
    plankton in the ocean
  126. (which is critical to marine
    and atmosphere ecology),
  127. the ongoing depletion
    of fish populations,
  128. the reduction of rain
    forests, and so forth.
  129. In other words, an overall general
    loss of critical biodiversity
  130. is occurring and increasing.
  131. For those not familiar with the
    critical relevance of biodiversity,
  132. billions of years of evolution
  133. has created a vastly interdependent
    biosphere of planetary systems.
  134. Disturbing one system always
    has an effect on many others.
  135. This, of course, is
    no new observation.
  136. In 2002, 192 countries in
    association with the United Nations
  137. got together around something called "The
    Convention on Biological Diversity."
  138. They made a public commitment to
    significantly reduce this loss by 2010.
  139. And what changed eight years later?
    Nothing.
  140. In their official 2010
    publication, they state:
  141. "None of the 21 sub-targets
    accompanying the overall target
  142. of significantly reducing the
    rate of biodiversity loss by 2010
  143. can be said definitively to
    have been achieved globally."
  144. "Actions to promote biodiversity
    receive a tiny fraction of funding
  145. compared to infrastructure and
    industrial developments."
  146. (Hmm, I wonder why?)
  147. "Moreover, biodiversity
    considerations are often ignored
  148. when such developments
    are designed.
  149. Most future scenarios project
    continuing high levels of extinctions
  150. and loss of habitats
    throughout this century."
  151. In a 2011 study published
    which was in part
  152. a response to an general call to
    isolate and protect certain regions
  153. to insure some security
    of this biodiversity,
  154. found that, even with millions of
    square kilometers of land and ocean
  155. currently under legal protection,
    it has done very little
  156. to slow the trend of decline.
  157. They also made the following
    highly troubling conclusion
  158. combining this trend with the state
    of our resource consumption:
  159. "The excess use of the Earth's
    resources or overshoot is possible
  160. because resources can be harvested
    faster than they can be replaced.
  161. The cumulative overshoot
    from the mid-1980's to 2002
  162. resulted in an 'ecological debt'
  163. that would require 2.5
    planet Earths to pay.
  164. In a business-as-usual scenario,
    our demands on planet Earth
  165. could mount to the productivity
    of 27 planets by 2050."
  166. And there's no shortage of other
    corroborating studies that confirm,
  167. to one degree or another, we are
    indeed greatly overshooting
  168. the annual production
    capacity of the Earth,
  169. coupled with pollution and
    collateral destruction
  170. caused by industrial
    and consumer patterns.
  171. Again, this kind of research has
    been published for many decades now.
  172. Why is it that with all
    this mounting data
  173. we can't seem to curb
    life support depletion
  174. and our overshooting
    consumption trends?
  175. Is it because there are too
    many people on the planet?
  176. Is it because we're just
    utterly incompetent
  177. and have no conscious
    control over our actions?
  178. No. The problem is that we have a global
    economic tradition still in place
  179. rooted in 16th century pre-industrial
    handicraft-oriented thought
  180. that places the
    act of consuming,
  181. buying and selling as the core
    driver of all social unfolding.
  182. The best analogy I can think of is
    to consider the gas pedal on a car:
  183. the more consumption of
    fuel, the faster it goes,
  184. and buying things in
    our world is the fuel.
  185. If you slow down consumption,
    economic growth slows,
  186. people lose jobs,
    purchasing power declines
  187. and things become
    destabilized and so forth.
  188. So I hope it is clear that the system
    simply does not reward or even support
  189. environmental sustainability
    in the form of conservation.
  190. In fact, it doesn't even reward
    sustainability in the form
  191. of any kind of earthly
    or physical efficiency
  192. as I will talk more at
    length of in a moment.
  193. Instead, it rewards servicing,
    turnover and waste:
  194. the more problems and
    inefficiencies we have,
  195. not to mention the more
    insecure, materialistic
  196. and needy the population becomes,
    the better it is for industry,
  197. the better it is for GDP, the
    better it is for employment,
  198. regardless of the fact
    that we may literally
  199. be killing ourselves
    in the process.
  200. My friend John McMurtry, a philosopher
    in Canada, refers to this state
  201. as the "Cancer Stage
    of Capitalism,"
  202. a system which is now destroying
    its host, us and the Earth,
  203. almost unknowingly because very
    few today really understand
  204. how unsustainable the core driving
    principles of the market really are.
  205. The second structurally inherent
    consequence I want to mention
  206. is the fact that market
    capitalism is indeed
  207. empirically socially
    destabilizing.
  208. It creates unnecessary
    and inhumane inequality,
  209. along with resulting
    unnecessary human conflict.
  210. In fact, I would say
    capitalism's most natural state
  211. is conflict and imbalance.
  212. I would categorize two forms
    of conflict in the world:
  213. national and class.
  214. I'm not going to spend much time
    on the causes of national warfare
  215. as it should be fairly obvious
    to most of us at his point.
  216. Sovereign nations which are in
    part protectionist institutions
  217. for the most powerful forces
    of business have often engaged
  218. in the most primal act of
    competition- systematic mass murder-
  219. in order to preserve the economic
    integrity of their national economies
  220. and select business interests
    which invariably comprise
  221. the political constituency
    of any given country.
  222. All wars in history, while often
    conveniently masked by various excuses,
  223. have predominately been about
    land, natural resources,
  224. or geoeconomic strategy
    on one level or another.
  225. The state institution
    has always been driven
  226. by commercial and property interests,
    existing as both a regulator
  227. of the basic day-to-day
    internal economic operations
  228. in the form of legislation and as
    a tool for power consolidation
  229. and competitive advantage by
    the most dominant industries
  230. of the national or even, in fact
    more importantly, global economy.
  231. There are many people in the world that
    still look at this causality in reverse.
  232. In some economic views, state government
    is deemed the central problem,
  233. as opposed to the self-interest and
    competitive, advantage-seeking ethos
  234. inherent to market capitalism.
  235. As the argument goes "If state power
    was removed or reduced dramatically,
  236. the market and society would be free
    of most of its negative effects."
  237. The problem with this
    argument is that it forgets
  238. that capitalism is just a
    variation of a scarcity-driven
  239. specialization and
    property-based exchange system,
  240. a system which actually goes back
    millennia in one form or another.
  241. Early settlements naturally needed
    to protect themselves as resource
  242. and land acquisition
    moved forward over time.
  243. Armies were created to protect resources
    from invading forces and the like.
  244. At the same time people
    were working to engage
  245. agriculture and handicraft,
  246. and it revealed labor and exchange
    value in a very primitive form.
  247. Hence property value, in the
    midst of this scarcity,
  248. demanded regulation and laws,
  249. not only to protect property,
    but to protect commerce
  250. and also avoid scams and
    fraud in transactions.
  251. This is the seed of the state!
  252. The market is a game
    and people can cheat.
  253. You need regulation.
  254. This is the basic problem.
  255. The market also allows-
    and here's the punchline-
  256. that regulation to be
    purchased by money.
  257. Therefore, there is no
    guaranteed integrity.
  258. The state and the market
    both battle each other
  259. and compliment each other.
  260. You will always have regulatory
    power centers in a market economy.
  261. The state and the
    market are inseparable;
  262. they go hand-in-hand.
  263. Now, as an aside, people
    often challenge this reality
  264. with moral or ethical arguments,
  265. which, I'm sorry to say, are
    entirely culturally subjective.
  266. In a world where
    everything is for sale,
  267. where the reward reinforcement,
    the operant condition,
  268. is directly tied to seeking
    personal advantage and gain,
  269. who is to say where the lines
    should be drawn in that process?
  270. This is why moral principles
    without structural reinforcement
  271. are useless.
  272. In the end, the question isn't what
    is morally right or morally wrong.
  273. The question is what
    works and what doesn't.
  274. And sometimes it takes
    a great deal of time
  275. for the truth of such
    patterns to materialize.
  276. For example, most
    people, rightly so, see
  277. abject human slavery historically
    as a morally wrong condition,
  278. but let's dig deeper into the
    characteristics and think more deeply.
  279. I think it is much more productive to
    recognize that slavery didn't work
  280. in the sense that it was
    culturally unsustainable.
  281. Bigotry in all forms
    is not just ugly,
  282. it is culturally unsustainable
    because it generates conflict.
  283. I'm not aware of any
    slave-owning society
  284. that did not undergo
    large slave rebellions.
  285. It's unstable and again,
    therefore, unsustainable.
  286. Market capitalism is
    on the same path.
  287. There are more slaves
    in the world today,
  288. operating within the bounds
    of the market economy,
  289. than anytime in human history.
  290. And I have little doubt that if we get
    through this rough period of time
  291. without destroying
    ourselves by war,
  292. uprisings or
    ecological collapse,
  293. people in the future will look back at
    our world today with the same disgust
  294. regarding our human-rights-violating
    economic system
  295. as we today look back upon the
    period of abject human slavery.
  296. Class Warfare.
  297. This leads as well into the
    subject of class warfare
  298. and socioeconomic inequality.
  299. The long history of so-called "socialist"
    outcry has largely been about
  300. this constant and inhumane
    imbalance on one level or another.
  301. A great deal of time has been spent
    by many critics of capitalism,
  302. describing how it is indeed
    a system of exploitation,
  303. which inherently separates a society
    into stratified economic layers
  304. with a higher class given dominance
    over the lower, structurally.
  305. It's structurally
    built right in.
  306. If you're one of those people that
    doesn't agree with this reality,
  307. ask yourself why there has been
    one labor strike after another
  308. in the past 300 years, why worker
    unions even exist, why CEOs
  309. often tend to make hundreds of times
    more money than the common worker,
  310. or why 46% of the world's
    wealth is now owned by 1%,
  311. which are almost exclusively
    of what we could call
  312. the capitalist ownership class.
  313. Inequality and class separation
    is a direct mathematical result
  314. of the market's inherently
    competitive orientation,
  315. which divides individuals
    in small groups
  316. as they work to compete against each
    other for survival and security.
  317. It is entirely
    individualistically oriented,
  318. driven by a core incentive system based
    around isolated self-preservation,
  319. assuming the need to constantly
    reinforce one's security financially
  320. since the market climate (the environment)
    gives no certainty whatsoever
  321. of well-being in and of
    itself: fear and greed.
  322. The rich get richer because
    the model favors them,
  323. and the poor basically
    stay the same
  324. because the system works
    against them by comparison.
  325. It is structurally classed.
  326. Those with more money have more options
    and influence than those with less.
  327. You are only as
    free, as they say,
  328. as your purchasing power
    will allow you to be.
  329. The credit system is
    a perfect example.
  330. Money is treated as nothing
    more than a product
  331. in the credit/banking system.
  332. Money is sold by banks
    via loans for profit
  333. which comes in the
    form of interest.
  334. If you miss payments or
    violate your contract,
  335. often the interest rate, does what?
    It goes up
  336. because you are now considered
    a higher risk consumer.
  337. If you fail to meet that
    interest or future payments,
  338. you might default on the loan.
  339. Your punishment is the ruining of
    your credit rating or reputation
  340. in the financial circles.
  341. Once that happens, your financial
    flexibility is even more stifled
  342. as your economic
    access is limited.
  343. People see this as just
    "the way things are"
  344. but they don't realize
    how insidious this is.
  345. This pounds the lower
    classes to stay low
  346. for reasons and forces of coercion
    that are built into the structure
  347. that are beyond their control!
    I could give many other examples.
  348. Everything in this system works
    against you if you're not affluent
  349. in this society. And guess what?
  350. These financial policies
    were created by ...
  351. self-interest-oriented
    market logic,
  352. not some politician
    or some government.
  353. I won't even go into the fact
    that the interest charged
  354. for the sale of money today doesn't
    even exist in the money supply itself,
  355. which creates a kind of
    system-based social coercion
  356. forcing in the inevitability
    of credit default over time,
  357. along with acts of economic
    desperation such as
  358. selling property you rather would
    not, to meet your basic needs
  359. or taking labor positions
    that you do not appreciate.
  360. The market generates desperation
    as its method of coercion.
  361. This leads into another very
    common "free market" confusion
  362. I often see in the very popular
    laissez-faire community.
  363. They talk about free trade as
    trade that is entirely voluntary
  364. as though such a thing could ever
    exist in an empirical sense.
  365. All decisions to trade come
    from influences and pressures.
  366. Only perhaps the super rich,
    who literally have no need
  367. to worry about basic
    survival due to their wealth
  368. could possibly be said to engage in
    the act of voluntary free trade.
  369. For 99% of the world, we either
    trade or we don't survive,
  370. and that pressure is
    empirically coercive.
  371. And no, it doesn't
    have to be that way,
  372. which is the whole point
    of this new social model.
  373. So with all that aside, and
    with this understanding
  374. that wealth inequality is
    inherent to capitalism itself
  375. - you can't regulate it out -
  376. the main issue I want to address
    here has to do with what
  377. class separation and social
    inequality does to us
  378. in the context of public health.
  379. It isn't just a simple issue of
    some having more than others,
  380. and others suffering the
    mere material inconvenience,
  381. or pressure to engage in labor or
    trade they'd rather not have to.
  382. It goes way beyond that.
  383. Socioeconomic
    inequality is a poison,
  384. a form of destabilizing
    pollution
  385. that affects people's psychological and
    physiological health in profound ways,
  386. while also very often accumulating
    anger towards other groups,
  387. and hence, that generation
    of social instability.
  388. The best term I know of that embodies
    this issue is "structural violence."
  389. If I put a gun to
    someone's head,
  390. say a 30-year-old healthy male,
    pull the trigger and kill him,
  391. assuming an average life
    expectancy of say 84,
  392. you can argue that
    possibly 54 years of life
  393. was stolen from that person
    in a direct act of violence.
  394. However, if a person
    is born into poverty
  395. in the midst of an
    abundant society
  396. where it is statistically proven
    that it would hurt no one
  397. to facilitate meeting the
    basic needs of that person,
  398. and yet they die at the age
    of 30 due to heart disease
  399. which has been found to statistically
    relate to those who endure
  400. the stress and effects of
    low socioeconomic status –
  401. is that death, the removal of those
    54 years again, an act of violence?
  402. The answer is "yes, it is."
  403. Our legal system has
    conditioned us to think
  404. that violence is a
    direct behavioral act.
  405. The truth is that
    violence is a process,
  406. not an act, and it
    can take many forms.
  407. You cannot separate any outcome from
    the system by which it is oriented.
  408. This is virtually absent
    from the way people think
  409. about cause-and-effect in
    a socioeconomic system.
  410. The effects of market
    capitalism cannot be reduced-
  411. or I should say cannot
    be deduced- logically
  412. from local or
    reductionist examination.
  413. [It's] like things are
    working like a clock:
  414. the market is a synergistic system,
    the economy is a synergistic system,
  415. and the behavior of the whole, meaning
    large-scale social consequences
  416. such as the perpetuation
    of inequality or violence,
  417. can only be assessed in
    relationship to that whole.
  418. This is why there has been
    one big dichotomy between
  419. what market theorists think is
    supposed to happen in their world
  420. and what is actually happening.
  421. For example, there is no doubt
    that poverty and social inequity
  422. is and has been causing a vast
    spectrum of public health problems,
  423. both in the context of absolute
    deprivation, which means not having
  424. the money to simply meet up with
    basic needs such as nutrition,
  425. and in the context of
    relative deprivation,
  426. which is a psychological
    phenomenon related to the stress-
  427. the psychosocial stress-
    of simply living
  428. in a highly-stratified society.
  429. One of the greatest predictors
    of reduced public health
  430. is now to be found
    as social inequity,
  431. social inequality.
  432. If you compare developed nations
    by the level of wealth inequality
  433. you will find that those more equal
    nations have much better health
  434. than those with less equality.
  435. This includes physical
    health, mental health,
  436. drug abuse, educational levels,
    imprisonment, obesity,
  437. social mobility, trust or social
    capital, community life, violence,
  438. teen pregnancies, and child
    well-being on average.
  439. These outcomes are
    significantly worse
  440. in more unequal rich countries.
  441. Yet, if you tried to reduce
    and analyze a single person
  442. for any of these noted
    public health factors,
  443. you could never know for sure if
    that person is actually a victim
  444. of the psycho-stress or the absolute
    or relative violence condition itself.
  445. The causality can
    only be understood
  446. on the large scale,
    probabilistically,
  447. which is the importance
    of statistical analysis.
  448. So again, the market
    can only be perceived
  449. as a whole to gauge the
    truth of its effects.
  450. This is why our legal system
    is so base and primitive.
  451. That aside, I would like to detail a few
    more examples of structural violence,
  452. as it obviously takes
    many more forms.
  453. When we see 1.5 million children die
    each year from diarrheal diseases-
  454. an utterly preventable
    problem that isn't resolved
  455. due to a financial
    limitation across the world,
  456. we are seeing the murder of 1.5
    [million] children by a system
  457. that is so inefficient in
    its process it cannot make
  458. the proper resources available
    in certain regions,
  459. even though that they are there.
  460. Drug addiction, which
    has become a plague
  461. of modern society across the
    world, not only causing death,
  462. but also a spectrum of suffering, has
    been found to have roots in stress.
  463. It has to do with a lack
    of support which creates
  464. a psychological chain
    reaction that leads to
  465. fill your feelings of pain
    with self-medication.
  466. You will rarely find a study
    on addiction patterns
  467. that does not see a
    direct correlation
  468. to unstable life
    conditions and stress.
  469. What is perhaps poverty's most
    dominant psychological feature?
  470. Feelings of insecurity
    and humility.
  471. Even the vast majority of
    behavioral violence as we know it
  472. arises due to preconditions
    which have been tied
  473. to poverty-induced
    deprivation and abuse.
  474. Former head of the Study of Violence
    at Harvard, Dr. James Gilligan,
  475. was a prison psychiatrist
    for many decades
  476. analyzing the reasons for extreme
    acts of murder and the like.
  477. In virtually all cases, high levels
    of deprivation, neglect, and abuse
  478. occurred in the life history of the offenders.
    And guess what?
  479. Poverty is the single
    best predictor
  480. of child abuse and neglect.
  481. In a US study, children
    who lived in families
  482. with an annual income
    less than $15,000
  483. are 22 times more likely
    to be abused or neglected
  484. than children living in families with
    an annual income of $30,000 or more.
  485. Aristotle said "Poverty is the
    parent of revolution and crime."
  486. Gandhi said "Poverty in the
    worst form of violence."
  487. The interesting thing
    about all this is
  488. is that we are all possible
    victims of its effects,
  489. for every time you hear
    about an act of theft,
  490. violence, murder, or the like,
  491. chances are the origins of
    that behavior were born
  492. out of a preventable
    form of deprivation.
  493. I say preventable because today
  494. there is absolutely no technical
    reason for any human being
  495. to live in poverty and
    resource deprivation.
  496. Solving social inequality is
    not just a nice thing to do,
  497. it is a true public
    health imperative.
  498. Just like making sure our
    water isn't polluted,
  499. so we don't get diseases.
  500. And each of us have no idea when
    we might be subjected to say,
  501. the violence bred by
    this deprivation.
  502. It's a form of blowback.
  503. Just like how some social
    theorists think about the reasons
  504. for modern terrorism
    from abused countries.
  505. A country like the United
    States bombs some town;
  506. the people in that town lose everything.
    Certain people are deeply affected
  507. and find no other
    emotional recourse
  508. but to act in the most violent
    way that can in revenge.
  509. The next thing you know, a bomb
    explodes at a coffee shop in your city,
  510. killing your sibling.
  511. In short, if you want to produce a
    violent criminal or gang mentality,
  512. let them be raised in an environment
    where they are reinforced
  513. with the sense that society
    doesn't care about them.
  514. And hence they have no need
    to care about society.
  515. This is the trademark,
  516. this is the core characteristic,
  517. of the capitalist social order.
  518. As a final aside before I move on,
    I find it incredibly interesting
  519. that the vast majority of the
    civil rights institutions today,
  520. or human rights
    institutions today,
  521. which still demand more race, gender,
    creed and political equality,
  522. tend to do very little to address
    the roots of economic inequality.
  523. It's a very interesting contradiction.
    I'm firmly convinced
  524. that as time moves forward,
    economic equality will morph
  525. into the same role as
    gender and race equality,
  526. where meeting human needs and
    facilitating a high standard of living
  527. will be an issue of human
    rights, not market expedience,
  528. and the social Darwinism
    to which it is based.
  529. Part II: Post-Scarcity.
  530. I would like to spend
    a moment clarifying
  531. what an "Abundance Focused
    Society" actually means
  532. and give some tangible,
    statistical extrapolations
  533. to confirm this potential.
  534. A Natural Law/Resource-Based
    Economy is not a utopia.
  535. The Zeitgeist Movement seeks a high,
    relative, sustainable abundance
  536. relieving the most relevant
    forms of scarcity.
  537. Many who hear such distinctions
    immediately dismiss
  538. such qualifications
    as mere opinion.
  539. The fact is, it's not opinion
    when it comes to life support
  540. or empirical human needs.
  541. Relative sustainable abundance
  542. means seeking more than enough to
    meet all human needs and beyond
  543. while keeping
    ecological balance.
  544. The most relevant forms of
    scarcity means we differentiate
  545. between scarcity as it
    relates to human needs
  546. and scarcity as it
    relates to human wants,
  547. as they are not the same.
  548. Unfortunately, market logic
    pretends that they are.
  549. The market cannot separate
    needs from wants.
  550. And this gets to the root of the
    life-blind, value-system disorder
  551. which continues to
    distort our culture.
  552. The logic goes like
    this: If there exists
  553. any form of scarcity of
    anything on any level,
  554. then we need money and the
    competitive market to regulate it.
  555. Let me explain this
    a little bit more.
  556. One of our international lecture
    team members, Matt Berkowitz,
  557. did a radio interview with a very popular
    Austrian economist a little while back,
  558. and when the subject of scarcity came
    up this economist responded with
  559. "Not everyone can have a
    fancy steak or a Ferrari!"
  560. This was his definitive view
    of what scarcity means.
  561. Now that may be true.
    Not every human being
  562. can have a 500-room mansion with
    three jets parked in the front lawn,
  563. with half the continent of
    Africa as his or her back yard.
  564. In theory, we could
    conjure up anything
  565. and use such luxury-based
    scarcity defenses
  566. to support the existence
    of the competitive market.
  567. So what are human needs?
    Are they subjective?
  568. Human needs have been created
  569. by the process of our physical
    and psychological evolution.
  570. Not meeting these virtually empirical
    needs results, as noted before,
  571. in a statistically predictable
    destabilizing spectrum
  572. of physical, mental
    and social disorders.
  573. Human wants, on the other hand,
    are cultural manifestations
  574. which have undergone enormous subjective
    change over the course of time,
  575. revealing in truth something
    of an arbitrary nature.
  576. This isn't to say neurotic
    attachments can't be made to wants,
  577. so much so that they start
    to take the role of needs.
  578. That's a phenomenon that occurs readily
    in our materialistic society, in fact.
  579. This is exactly why the previously
    noted wealth-imbalance issues,
  580. namely the
    psychosocial-stress response
  581. resulting from social
    comparison, is what it is.
  582. It's a part of our evolutionary
    psychology in many ways.
  583. But this is partly why more
    unequal societies also
  584. are the more unhealthy societies,
    because we perpetuate it.
  585. The Zeitgeist Movement is not promoting
    an infinite universal abundance
  586. of all things, which is clearly
    impossible on a finite planet.
  587. Rather, it promotes a "post-scarcity'"
    or "abundance" worldview,
  588. with an active recognition of the
    natural limits of consumption
  589. on the planet while
    seeking equilibrium.
  590. And what separates the world
    today from the world of the past
  591. is that our scientific and
    technological capacity
  592. has reached an accelerating
    point of efficiency
  593. where creating a high standard of
    living for all the world's people
  594. based on current cultural
    preferences, in fact,
  595. is now possible within these
    sustainable boundaries
  596. without the destructive need to
    compete through the market mechanism.
  597. This is made by what has been
    called "ephemeralization,"
  598. a term coined by engineer R.
    Buckminster Fuller,
  599. and the recognition
    is very simple.
  600. The amount of resources and energy
    needed to achieve any given task
  601. has constantly
    decreased over time,
  602. while the efficiency of that task
    has increased, paradoxically.
  603. An example is wireless
    satellite communication
  604. which uses exponentially
    less materials
  605. than traditional
    large-gauge copper wire
  606. and is more versatile
    and effective.
  607. In other words, we are doing
    more with less continually,
  608. and this trend can be noticed in all
    areas of industrial development
  609. from computer processing
    or Moore's Law
  610. to the rapid acceleration of human
    knowledge or information technology.
  611. And it isn't just
    physical goods.
  612. It also applies to
    processes or systems.
  613. For example, the labor system,
    via automation today,
  614. shows the exact same pattern.
  615. Industry has become more
    productive with less people,
  616. ever-increasing
    machine performance,
  617. with ever-decreasing energy and
    material needs over time per operation.
  618. As a brief tangent,
    some might have noticed
  619. I keep saying this phrase
  620. "High Standard of Living.
    " What does that mean?
  621. Who is to say what a high
    standard of living should be?
  622. The answer to that question
    is not "who," it is "what."
  623. And "what" determines
    our standard of living
  624. is the current state of
    technology in many ways,
  625. and what is required to keep
  626. social and environmental
    sustainability on a finite planet.
  627. That's basically the equation.
  628. If we as a society wish to keep the
    value of constant materialism,
  629. growth, and consumption, promoting
    the virtue of having infinite wants
  630. then we might as well just
    kill ourselves right now,
  631. as that is going to be the end
    result if we continue to push past
  632. the limits of the physical world with
    respect to our resource exploitation
  633. and the loss of biodiversity.
  634. So I want to make it very clear:
    this new economic proposal
  635. isn't just about seeing how the
    market is obsolete per se,
  636. given our new powerful awarenesses
    of technical efficiency;
  637. it is also about the
    fact that we need
  638. to get out of the market
    paradigm as fast as we can
  639. before it causes
    even more damage.
  640. OK, Post-Scarcity.
  641. The four categories I want to
    cover in detail regarding this
  642. are food, water, energy,
    and material goods.
  643. Please note that for
    food, energy, and water
  644. this is actually a very
    conservative assessment,
  645. using statistics and
    measures based only
  646. on existing methods that have
    been put into industrial use,
  647. not theoretical things that
    people talk about all the time.
  648. And all I'm going to
    do is scale this out,
  649. applying a systems
    theory context.
  650. Food.
  651. According to the United Nations, one
    out of every eight people on Earth-
  652. nearly one billion people- suffer
    from chronic undernourishment.
  653. Yet it is admitted that there
    is enough food produced today
  654. by traditional market
    methods alone,
  655. to provide everyone in the world with
    at least 2,720 kilocalories per day
  656. which is more then enough to
    maintain basic health for most.
  657. Therefore, just in
    principle right now,
  658. the existence of such a large-scale
    number of chronically hungry people
  659. reveals at a minimum that there
    is something fundamentally wrong
  660. with the global industrial
    and economic process.
  661. According to the Institution
    of Mechanical Engineers,
  662. "It is estimated that
    30-50% of all food produced
  663. never reaches a human stomach
  664. and this figure does not reflect
    the fact that large amounts
  665. of land, energy, fertilizers,
    and water have also been lost
  666. in the production of foodstuffs
    which simply end up as waste."
  667. While there is certainly an
    imperative to consider the relevance
  668. of these waste patterns, it
    appears that the most effective
  669. and practical means to overcome
    this global deficiency entirely
  670. is to update the system
    of food production itself
  671. with the most strategic
    localization
  672. in order to reduce the waste
    caused by inefficiencies
  673. in the current
    global supply chain.
  674. Perhaps the most promising of these
    arrangements is something called
  675. vertical farming which I
    assume many are familiar with.
  676. Vertical farming has been put
    to test in a number of regions
  677. with extremely promising results
    regarding efficiency and conservation.
  678. This method of abundant food
    production will not only
  679. use less resources per unit
    output, causing less waste,
  680. have a reduced
    ecological footprint,
  681. increase food quality
    and the like,
  682. it will also use less
    surface of the planet,
  683. uses less land area
    than we're doing today.
  684. It can even be done offshore-
    it's that versatile-
  685. enabling types of food as well,
    that certain climates and regions
  686. simply couldn't produce
    because it's enclosed.
  687. A vertical farm system in
    Singapore, for example,
  688. custom built, a
    transparent enclosure,
  689. uses a closed loop
    automated hydraulic system
  690. to rotate the crops in
    circles between sunlight
  691. and organic nutrient treatment,
  692. costing only about $3 a month in
    electricity for each enclosure.
  693. This system also has
    reported to have 10 times
  694. more productivity per square
    foot than conventional farming,
  695. again, using much less water,
    labor, and fertilizer.
  696. Students at Columbia
    University in the US
  697. determined that in order to feed
    50,000 people, a 30-story farm
  698. built on the size of a basic
    city block would be needed,
  699. which is about 6.4 acres.
  700. If we extrapolate this in the context
    of the city of Los Angeles, California
  701. (where I'm coming from) with a
    population of about 4 million,
  702. with a total acreage
    of about 318,000
  703. it would take roughly 78
    structures to feed all residents.
  704. This amounts to about 0.1% of the
    total land area of Los Angeles,
  705. to feed the entire population.
  706. If we apply this
    extrapolation to the Earth
  707. and the human population of 7.2
    billion, we end up needing about
  708. 144,000 vertical farms
    to feed the whole world.
  709. This amounts to about 921,000 acres
    of land to place these farms
  710. which, given about 38%
    of the Earth's land
  711. is currently being used for
    traditional agriculture,
  712. we find that we only
    need about 0.006%
  713. of the Earth's existing
    agricultural land
  714. to meet production requirements.
  715. Let's be a little bit
    more consistent.
  716. Within that 38% land-use
    statistic for agriculture,
  717. much of that land is also used
    for livestock cultivation,
  718. not just crop cultivation.
  719. So, if we were to
    theoretically take
  720. only the crop production
    land currently being used,
  721. which is about 4 billion acres,
    replacing land-based cultivation
  722. by dropping these 30-story vertical
    farms side-by-side in theory,
  723. the food output would be enough to
    meet the nutritional needs to feed
  724. 34.4 trillion people.
  725. Given that we only need to
    feed about 9 billion by 2050,
  726. we only need to harness about 0.02%
    of this theoretical capacity, which
  727. it could be argued, makes rather moot
    any seemingly practical objections
  728. common to the aforementioned
    extrapolation.
  729. In short, we have absolute
    global food abundance potential.
  730. Water.
  731. According to the World Health
    Organization about 2.6 billion people-
  732. half of the developing world-
    lack proper sanitation
  733. and about 1.1 billion
    people have no access
  734. to any type of clean
    drinking sources.
  735. Due to ongoing
    depletion, by 2025,
  736. it is estimated that
    almost 2 billion people
  737. will live in areas plagued
    by water scarcity
  738. with 2/3 of the entire
    world population living
  739. in water-stressed areas.
  740. The cause?
    Obviously waste and pollution.
  741. But I'm not going
    to talk about that-
  742. the details, causes and prevention;
    that's not the point of this.
  743. Rather, let's take again, a
    technological capacity approach only,
  744. considering modern purification
    and modern desalination systems
  745. on the macro-industrial scale.
  746. Purification.
  747. The average person today globally
    uses about 1,385m³ of water per year.
  748. This factors in all industrial
    activity as well, such as agriculture.
  749. For the sake of argument, let's
    consider what it would take to purify
  750. all the fresh water currently being
    used in the world on average annually.
  751. Given the global
    average of 1,385m³
  752. and a population of 7.2 billion,
  753. we arrive at a total annual
    use of about 10 trillion m³.
  754. Using a New York State USA
    UV-disinfection plant as a base measure,
  755. which has an output capacity of roughly
    3 billion cubic meters a year,
  756. taking up about 3.7
    acres of land,
  757. we would need 3,327 plants
  758. to purify all the water used by
    the entire global population,
  759. taking up about
    12,000 acres of land.
  760. Needless to say, there are many
    other factors that come into play,
  761. such as power needs, location, and the like.
    That's fair enough.
  762. However, this is a
    minor inconvenience.
  763. 12,000 acres is
    nothing compared to
  764. the 36 billion acres of
    land on the planet Earth.
  765. To give this a more practical
    example, the US military
  766. alone has about 845,000
    military bases
  767. and buildings, I
    should say, as well.
  768. This has been reported to take up about
    30 million acres of land globally.
  769. Only 0.04% of that
    land would be needed
  770. to disinfect the total fresh
    water use of the entire world
  771. if that were even needed,
    which of course it is not.
  772. Desalination.
  773. Let's run the same theoretical
    extrapolation on desalination.
  774. The most common method of desalination
    used today is called reverse osmosis,
  775. and according the International
    Desalination Association,
  776. it accounts for 60% of the
    installed capacity globally.
  777. There are a lot of other methods
    that are emerging quite rapidly
  778. with high levels of efficiency [which]
    can move water much more quickly.
  779. But I'm not going to talk about that.
    I want to stay only
  780. within the common
    methods applied today.
  781. But keep in mind that
    everything I'm speaking of
  782. has dramatic improvements
    coming very soon.
  783. There's an advanced
    reversed osmosis
  784. seawater desalinization
    plant in Australia
  785. that can produce about 150
    million m³ of fresh water a year
  786. while occupying about 50 acres.
  787. Given the total annual water
    use of the world today,
  788. - it's about 10 trillion
    cubic meters again -
  789. it would take about
    60,000 plants to produce
  790. current global water
    usage in total.
  791. Using the dimensions of that
    plant, which is quite large,
  792. such a feat would take about
    18,000 miles of coast land,
  793. or about 8.5% of the
    world's coast land.
  794. Obviously, that's not really ideal,
    that's a lot of coast land,
  795. but this exercise is
    about proportion.
  796. Clearly, we do not need to
    desalinate all water used,
  797. nor would we bypass the use
    of purification processes
  798. or ignore the vast reforms needed to
    preserve efficiency and fresh water
  799. or, equally as important, the reuse
    schemes that are coming to fruition
  800. where buildings are able to
    use water in multiple ways
  801. by recycling water that comes
    from a sink into toilets,
  802. and other mechanisms that unfortunately
    go unused for the vast majority.
  803. Let's do a slightly more practical
    real life extrapolation,
  804. combining only purification
    and desalination
  805. with actual regional
    scarcity statistics.
  806. On the continent of Africa,
    roughly 345 million people
  807. lack access to freshwater.
  808. If we apply the noted global
    average consumption rate
  809. again of 1,385m³ a year,
  810. seeking to provide each of those
    345 million people that amount,
  811. we would need about 480 billion
    cubic meters produced annually.
  812. If we divided this number in half
    and use purification systems
  813. for one section and
    desalination for the other,
  814. the desalination process
    would need about 1.9%
  815. or 494 miles of coastline for
    desalination facilities,
  816. and only about 296 acres of land
    for purification facilities,
  817. which is a minuscule fraction
    of Africa's total land mass
  818. of about 7 billion acres.
  819. So, this is highly doable
    even in this crude example.
  820. In all cases, we would strategically
    maximize purification processes
  821. since it is clearly
    more efficient
  822. while using desalination
    for the remaining demand.
  823. In short, it's absurd for
    anyone on this planet
  824. to be going without freshwater,
    not to mention, as an aside,
  825. 70% of all freshwater used today
  826. is used in agriculture in our grossly
    wasteful agricultural methods. 70%!
  827. If we, for example, apply
    again vertical farm systems
  828. which have been noted to reduce water
    by upwards of 80% in comparison,
  829. we would see an
    enormous freeing up
  830. of this unnecessarily
    scarce resource as well.
  831. Moving on to Energy.
  832. We live in one massive perpetual
    motion machine known as the Universe.
  833. The fact that we still use polluting
    fossil fuel stores in the Earth
  834. or the incredibly unstable
    nuclear phenomenon
  835. which gives very little
    room for human fallibility
  836. is truly frightening.
  837. There are four main
    large capacity
  838. "base-load," as they would
    say, renewable energy means
  839. which are currently most ideal
  840. as per our current state of
    technological application.
  841. These are geothermal
    plants, wind farms,
  842. solar fields, and
    water-based power.
  843. Due to time I'm not going to
    explain what these mediums are
  844. as I assume most know.
    I'm just going to run through
  845. the abundance comparison.
  846. Geothermal.
  847. A 2006 MIT report on
    geothermal found that
  848. 13,000 zettajoules of power are
    currently available in the Earth
  849. with the possibility of 2000
    zettajoules being harvestable
  850. with improved technology.
  851. The total energy consumption of
    all the countries on the planet
  852. is only about half a
    zettajoule a year.
  853. This means literally thousands
    of years of planetary power
  854. could be harnessed in
    this medium alone.
  855. Geothermal energy also uses much
    less land than other energy sources.
  856. Over 30 years, a period of
    time commonly used to compare
  857. the life cycle impacts from
    different power sources,
  858. it was found that a
    geothermal facility
  859. uses 404 m² of land
    per gigawatt hour
  860. while a coal facility
  861. uses 3,632 m² per gigawatt hour.
  862. If we were to do a basic
    comparison of geothermal to coal
  863. given this ratio of m² to GWh
  864. we find that we could fit
    about 9 geothermal plants
  865. in the space of one coal plant.
  866. And that isn't accounting
    for the vast amount of land
  867. that is currently used
    for coal extraction-
  868. you know, those huge holes
    that we see in the earth.
  869. By the way, the beauty of
    geothermal, and in fact,
  870. all of the renewables I'm going
    to speak of, is that extraction
  871. or the harnessing location is
    almost always the exact same place
  872. as processing for the power
    distribution as well.
  873. All hydrocarbon sources on the
    other hand require both extraction
  874. and power production facilities
    almost always in separate locations,
  875. sometimes refineries as well,
    in separate locations.
  876. In 2013, it was announced that
    a 1,000 megawatt power station
  877. was to begin construction
    in Ethiopia.
  878. We're going to use this as a base,
    theoretical for extrapolation.
  879. If a 1000-megawatt geothermal power
    station operated at full capacity
  880. 24 hours a day, 365 days a year,
  881. it would produce 8.7
    million MWh a year.
  882. The world's current annual
    energy usage is about
  883. 153 billion MWh a year, which would
    mean it would take in abstraction
  884. about 17,000 geothermal
    plants to match global use.
  885. There are over 2,300 coal power
    plants in operation worldwide today.
  886. Using the aforementioned
    plant-sized capacity comparison
  887. of about nine geothermal plants
    fitting into one coal plant,
  888. the space of 1,940 coal plants
    would be needed in theory
  889. to contain the 17,000
    geothermal plants
  890. or 84% of the total
    in existence.
  891. Also, given that coal
    accounts for only 41%
  892. of today's current
    energy production,
  893. this theoretical
    extrapolation also shows
  894. how in 84% of the current
    space used by coal plants,
  895. geothermal could supply 100%
    of total global power supply.
  896. Wind Farms.
  897. It's been calculated that today
    with existing turbine technology,
  898. which is improving rapidly,
    that Earth could produce
  899. hundreds of trillions of watts
    of power, many more times
  900. than what the world
    consumes, overall.
  901. However, breaking this
    down, using the 9,000 acre
  902. Alta Wind Center in California
    as a theoretical basis,
  903. which has an active capacity
    of 1,320 MW of power,
  904. a theoretical annual output of
    11 million MWh is possible.
  905. This means 13,000
  906. 9,000-acre wind farms
    would be needed to meet
  907. total global demand
    of 153 billion MWh.
  908. This requires about 119
    million acres of land
  909. or 0.3% of the Earth's surface
  910. to power the world
    in abstraction.
  911. However as some may
    know, offshore wind
  912. is typically much more
    powerful than land-based.
  913. According to the Assessment
  914. of Offshore Wind Energy Resources
    for the United States, a report:
  915. 4,150 gigawatts of potential
    wind turbine technology-
  916. turbine capacity- from
    offshore wind resources
  917. are available in the
    United States alone.
  918. Assuming this power capacity was
    consistent for a whole year,
  919. we end up with an energy conversion
    of 36 billion MWh a year.
  920. Given the United States in 2010
  921. used 25.7 billion MWh,
  922. we find that offshore
    wind harvesting alone
  923. could exceed the national use
  924. by about 10.6
    billion MWh or 41%.
  925. And axiomatically,
    extrapolating this national
  926. level of capacity to the rest
    of the world's coast lines,
  927. also taking into account the
    aforementioned land-based statistics,
  928. it is clear that we can power
    the world many, many times over
  929. with wind, and
    quite practically.
  930. Solar Fields.
  931. If humanity could capture 0.1% of the
    solar energy striking the Earth,
  932. we would have access to
    six times as much energy
  933. we consume in all forms today.
  934. The ability to harness this
    power depends on technology
  935. and how high the percentage
    of radiation conversion is.
  936. The Ivanpah Solar Electric
    System in California:
  937. it's a 3,500-acre field
  938. with an annual stated generation
    of about one million MWh.
  939. If we were to extrapolate using
    this as a theoretical basis,
  940. it would take about 142,000 fields
    or about 500 million acres of land
  941. to theoretically meet
    current global energy use.
  942. That's about 1.5% of
    total land on Earth.
  943. Deserts cover about 1/3 of the
    world or about 12 billion acres,
  944. and they tend to be fairly
    conducive to solar fields,
  945. while often less conducive
    to life support for people.
  946. Given the roughly
    500 million acres
  947. theoretically needed to
    power the world as noted,
  948. only 4.1% of the world's
    deserts would be needed
  949. to contain these fields,
  950. land that pretty much just
    otherwise sits there.
  951. Water-Based Power.
  952. There are five dominant types of
    water-based power: wave, tidal,
  953. ocean current, osmotic,
  954. ocean thermal, and water course.
  955. Overall, the technology for
    harnessing ocean in general
  956. is in its infancy, but
    the potential is vast.
  957. And based on
    traditional estimates
  958. here is what the accepted
    global potentials
  959. have been estimated at
    using existing methods;
  960. we're not applying advanced technology
    that's not in application yet.
  961. This all figures up to be
    about 150,000 TWh/year
  962. or 96% of current global use
  963. of the half of a zettajoule,
  964. pretty much enough to power the world
    in one medium alone if applied.
  965. However to give a sense of
    growing technological potential
  966. (because I think this is important
    considering how technology
  967. and water-oriented power
    is deeply in its infancy)
  968. recent developments in 'ocean
    current' harnessing technology
  969. (the currents that go
    underneath the ocean)
  970. which can embrace much lower
    speeds now than they used to,
  971. it has estimated that ocean
    current alone could now
  972. theoretically power the entire
    world if applied correctly.
  973. So, let's recap.
  974. Wind, solar, water and
    geothermal have shown,
  975. as large scale, base-load
    renewable energy mediums,
  976. that they are capable, individually,
    of meeting or vastly exceeding
  977. current annual global energy
    consumption at this time.
  978. And obviously a systems approach,
    harmonizing an optimized fraction
  979. of each of those renewables
    strategically is the key
  980. to achieving a global,
    total energy abundance.
  981. For example, it's not
    inconceivable to imagine
  982. a series of man-made
    floating islands
  983. off select coastlines which are
    designed to harness, at once,
  984. wind, solar, thermal difference,
    wave, tidal and currents,
  985. all at the same time and
    in the same general area.
  986. Such energy islands would then
    pipe their harvest back to land
  987. for storage and distribution.
  988. It is only up to our design ingenuity
    to figure things like this out.
  989. Localization and Reuse.
  990. The final energy factor
    I want to mention,
  991. which builds upon this
    systems-thinking explicitly,
  992. has to do with localization
    and re-use schemes.
  993. Localized energy harnessing
    isn't given a fraction
  994. of the attention it needs today.
  995. Smaller scale renewable methods
    which are conducive to
  996. single structures or small areas
  997. find the same systems logic,
    regarding combination.
  998. These local systems could also, if
    need be, connect back into the larger
  999. base-load systems, creating a total,
    mixed medium, integrated network
  1000. which happens sometimes
    today with solar.
  1001. There are many localized systems
    out there which can draw energy
  1002. from the immediate environment:
    there's solar power arrays,
  1003. there's small wind
    harvesting systems,
  1004. localized geothermal
    heating and cooling
  1005. and even architectural design
    that just simply makes
  1006. natural light and heat/cool
    preservation more efficient.
  1007. Buckminster Fuller was great
    with his dome structures
  1008. and how they actually contained
    energy quite well. Same idea.
  1009. Extending outwards to
    city infrastructure
  1010. we see the same wasted possible
    efficiency almost everywhere.
  1011. A simple technology
    called piezoelectric
  1012. is able to convert pressure and mechanical
    energy directly into electricity.
  1013. It's an excellent example of an energy
    reuse method with great potential.
  1014. Existing applications have
    included power generation
  1015. by people simply walking on these
    engineered floors and sidewalks,
  1016. streets which can generate power
    as automobiles cross over them,
  1017. and train rail systems which
    can also capture energy
  1018. from passing train
    cars through pressure.
  1019. It has been suggested by
    people who have studied this
  1020. that a stretch of road
    less than one mile long,
  1021. four lanes wide, a highway,
  1022. and trafficked by about
    1,000 vehicles per hour
  1023. can create about 0.4
    Megawatt of power,
  1024. which is enough to
    power 600 homes.
  1025. Now extrapolate that out to the bulk
    of all the highways in the world;
  1026. you have a very, very powerful
    regenerative energy source.
  1027. Overall, if we think about the
    enormous mechanical energy wasted
  1028. by vehicle transport modes and
    high-traffic walking centers alone,
  1029. the potential of that possible
    regenerated energy is quite substantial.
  1030. It's this systems-thinking
    once again that is needed
  1031. in order to maintain
    sustainability,
  1032. while also pursuing this
    global energy abundance.
  1033. The final more complex
    subject, energy aside,
  1034. will be the subject
    of material abundance
  1035. and creating
    life-supporting goods.
  1036. Unlike the prior, more simple
    post-scarcity categories of food,
  1037. water and energy, the creation
    of a broad material abundance
  1038. of all basic goods, which comprise
    the current average, you could say,
  1039. of what is culturally considered a
    'high standard of living' today
  1040. is substantially more
    radical in its need
  1041. for industrial
    revision and change.
  1042. As expressed before, the current
    highly inefficient methods
  1043. we use in industrial design, production,
    distribution and regeneration
  1044. is one of the main reasons
    we are in a constant state
  1045. of global resource overshoot
  1046. and destabilizing
    biodiversity loss.
  1047. Also as noted prior, there
    is no market incentive
  1048. for advanced states
    of efficiency,
  1049. as efficiency always reduces
    the amount of labor,
  1050. resources and service
    needed for a given purpose;
  1051. and hence, reduces
    monetary circulation.
  1052. I can't reinforce that enough.
  1053. Therefore, a new synergistic
    systems-view of industry
  1054. focused explicitly on material
    and labor efficiency,
  1055. along with an optimized strategy
    for sustainability, is in order.
  1056. For the sake of time and as a lead-in
    to the final section on calculation,
  1057. I'm going to focus on a few
    principles or protocols
  1058. and how each protocol
    assists efficiency
  1059. towards this
    post-scarcity abundance.
  1060. Otherwise it would take an
    enormous amount of time;
  1061. it's not as simple as the
    prior extrapolations.
  1062. However, in this book that I mentioned
    there will be a whole chapter
  1063. dedicated to this issue
    in great detail.
  1064. (1) Access, not property.
  1065. A property-based society
    incentivizes the preference to own
  1066. a given product,
    rather than rent,
  1067. or gain access to as needed.
  1068. I'm a filmmaker and while I do
    rent some things occasionally,
  1069. it's much more cost-effective
    and smart to buy things
  1070. because they have resale value.
  1071. This incentive of universal
    ownership is incredibly wasteful
  1072. when we examine actual use
    time of a given good.
  1073. Facilitating a means of access where
    things can be literally shared
  1074. will allow many more to gain use
    of goods they otherwise could not,
  1075. along with there being less production
    of those goods in proportion.
  1076. In a Natural Law/Resource
    Based Economy
  1077. we seek to create an access
    abundance, not a property abundance
  1078. which is inherently wasteful.
  1079. As an aside, it's also important
    to note that property
  1080. is not an empirical concept.
  1081. Only access is
    empirically valid.
  1082. Property is a protectionist
    contrivance.
  1083. Access is the reality of the
    social and human condition.
  1084. In order for you to truly
    say "own" a computer,
  1085. you have to have had alone
  1086. come up with the entire technological
    process that made that thing
  1087. along with the ideas
    that comprise the tools
  1088. you might have used to
    make that computer.
  1089. This is literally impossible
  1090. and is what destroys the
    early labor theory of value
  1091. (property is stuff that's put
    forward by classical economists).
  1092. There's no such thing as property.
    There is only access and sharing,
  1093. no matter what social
    system you employ.
  1094. (2) Designed-in Recycling
  1095. Contrary to our intuition, there
    is no such thing as waste
  1096. in the natural world.
  1097. Not only from the standpoint
    of the biosphere which reuses
  1098. everything in its process,
  1099. the 92 main naturally occurring
    elements in the periodic table
  1100. that comprise all matter
    cannot be exhausted.
  1101. Humanity has given very little
    consideration to the role
  1102. of material regeneration, and
    how all of our design practices
  1103. must account for this recycling.
  1104. In fact, as some may know, the
    highest state of this recycling
  1105. will eventually come in the
    form of nanotechnology.
  1106. Nanotechnology will eventually
    be able to create goods
  1107. from the atomic level up and
    disassemble them right back down
  1108. to the almost virtual
    starting point.
  1109. It is the ultimate form of recycling.
    By the way, I'm not suggesting this.
  1110. I'm not suggesting that nanotechnology
    is even needed at this time,
  1111. as though that that's what
    we're doing right now.
  1112. It's just [that] this is a
    great principle to reference
  1113. as far as regenerative
    importance.
  1114. Today, industry has little sense
    of synergy in this context.
  1115. Recycling is an afterthought.
    Companies continue to do things
  1116. such as blindly coat materials with
    chemical paints, and the like,
  1117. that distort the properties
    of those materials,
  1118. making the materials
    less salvageable,
  1119. or maybe completely unsalvageable,
    to current recycling methods.
  1120. It happens all the time.
    So long story short,
  1121. strategic recycling
    just might be
  1122. the most core seed of a
    continued abundance.
  1123. Every landfill on earth is
    just a waste of potential.
  1124. Number 3: Strategic
    conformation of good design
  1125. to the most conducive
  1126. and abundant materials known.
  1127. You will notice this efficiency
    qualification in what I just said:
  1128. conducive and abundant.
  1129. Conducive means most appropriate
    based on the material properties.
  1130. Abundant means you weigh
    the value of conduciveness
  1131. against the value of how accessible
    and low-impact the material is,
  1132. compared to other materials which
    may be more or less conducive.
  1133. This is a synergistic
    efficiency comparison.
  1134. (I'm sorry if the language sounds
    a little bit complicated.)
  1135. Probably the best example of this
    is home or domicile construction.
  1136. The common use of wood, bricks,
    screws and the vast array of parts
  1137. that is typical of a common house is
    comparatively, vastly inefficient
  1138. to more modern, simplified
    pre-fabrication or moldable materials.
  1139. A traditional 2000 square-foot
    home requires about
  1140. 40 to 50 trees, about an acre.
  1141. Compare that with houses that can be
    created in prefabrication processes
  1142. with simple,
    earth-friendly polymers,
  1143. concrete, or other
    easily formable methods.
  1144. 3D printing, for
    example, is on pace.
  1145. These new approaches have a very
    small footprint as compared to
  1146. our destruction of global forests
    which continue, for wood.
  1147. Home construction today is one
    of the most resource intensive
  1148. and wasteful industrial
    mediums in the world,
  1149. with about 40% of all materials
    collected for construction
  1150. ended up as waste in the end.
  1151. Number 4: Design conduciveness
    for labor automation.
  1152. Now this is very
    foreign to many.
  1153. The more we conform
    to the current state
  1154. of rapid, efficient
    production processes,
  1155. obviously, the more
    abundance we can create.
  1156. If you read texts on
    manufacturing processes,
  1157. they typically divide labor
    into three categories.
  1158. There's human assembly, there's
    mechanization and there's automation.
  1159. Human assembly means handmade,
  1160. mechanization means machines
    assist the laborer,
  1161. and automation means
    no human action.
  1162. Imagine if you needed a chair
    and there were three designs.
  1163. The first is elaborate and complex,
    and could only be done by hand.
  1164. The second is more streamlined
    where its parts could be made
  1165. mostly by machines, but would
    need to be assembled by hand.
  1166. The third chair is produced by
    one process, fully automated.
  1167. The latter chair design
    would be the design goal
  1168. in theory of this new approach.
  1169. What this would do is reduce the
    complexity of the automation process
  1170. with little to no human labor.
  1171. Imagine a production plant
    that not only produces cars,
  1172. it can produce virtually any
    kind of industrial product
  1173. comprised of the same
    basic shared materials.
  1174. This is very feasible.
  1175. This would increase
    output substantially.
  1176. In other words, we are optimizing
    the means of production.
  1177. And as an aside, many
    who see stuff like this
  1178. think that this means there's not going
    to be any variety in the future,
  1179. that it's just going to be cold and
    uniform and everyone gets the same thing.
  1180. No. I'm just using this as an example
    to make an efficiency point.
  1181. Being conducive to automation does
    not mean universal uniformity
  1182. of design because the incredible
    amount of variance possible
  1183. in our current automation technology
    is amazing and accelerating.
  1184. Modular robotics, there's many
    different self-changing machines
  1185. that can create a great
    amount of variance.
  1186. All this means is the existing
    processes in their current state
  1187. should be respected
    to ease production.
  1188. Don't confuse this with the idea that
    everyone just gets the same everything.
  1189. What they get is the same basic
    sustainability principles,
  1190. which come in many different forms,
    if you can understand that.
  1191. These four parameters set in motion,
    along with the basic intent
  1192. to assist the trend of
    ephemeralization on all levels,
  1193. there is little doubt
    that every human being
  1194. could have a very high
    standard of living.
  1195. It is simply about converting
    all of the inefficiency we have
  1196. straight into productivity,
    strategically.
  1197. I will conclude this section by noting that R.
    Buckminster Fuller
  1198. is probably the only human
    being that has ever attempted
  1199. to account and quantify the state
    of resources and their potential
  1200. within the past hundred
    years and, while primitive,
  1201. he was able to arrive at the
    following conclusion in 1969:
  1202. "Man developed such intense
    mechanization in World War I
  1203. that the percentage of total world
    population that were industrial 'haves'
  1204. rose by 1919 to
    the figure of 6%.
  1205. This was an abrupt
    change in history.
  1206. By the time of World War
    II, 20% of all humanity
  1207. had become industrial 'haves.'
  1208. At the present moment the proportion
    of 'haves' is at 40% of humanity.
  1209. If we up the performances of
    resources from the present level
  1210. to a highly feasible overall
    efficiency of 12% more
  1211. (increasing by 12%, our use,
    holistically, on average)
  1212. all humanity can
    be provided for."
  1213. The exponential increase in
    information technology since 1969,
  1214. along with the applied
    technology and advanced
  1215. synergetic understandings
    we have today,
  1216. I suspect, now far exceeds-...
  1217. we are way beyond the 12% efficiency
    increase that he saw as needed.
  1218. The problem now is conforming to
    industrial conduciveness appropriately
  1219. which is currently not done.
  1220. This leads us to Part III: Economic
    Organization and Calculation.
  1221. If you're wondering why
    I spent so much time
  1222. on the prior points
    of post-scarcity
  1223. and those two core problems
    inherent to market capitalism-
  1224. social imbalance and
    environmental imbalance-
  1225. it's because you cannot understand
    the logic of the economic factors
  1226. involved in this model without
    those prior awarenesses.
  1227. A Natural Law/Resource Based Economy
    is not just a progressive outgrowth
  1228. of our increased capacity to
    be productive as a species,
  1229. as though we would just gradually
    evolve out of the market system
  1230. step-by-step into this approach.
  1231. No. The dire need for
    this system's removal
  1232. needs to be realized once again.
  1233. It has to become
    a part, in fact,
  1234. of the incentive structure
    of the new model:
  1235. the historical understanding that
    if we do not adjust in this way
  1236. we will revert right back into
    this highly unstable period
  1237. we are in right now.
  1238. An economic model is a
    theoretical construct
  1239. representing component processes by
    a set of variables or functions,
  1240. describing the logical
    relationships between them.
  1241. Basic definition.
  1242. If anyone has studied traditional
    or market-based economic modeling,
  1243. a great deal of time is often spent
    on things such as price trends,
  1244. behavioral patterns,
    utilitarianistic functions,
  1245. inflation, currency
    fluctuations and so forth.
  1246. Rarely, if ever, is anything said
    about public or ecological health.
  1247. Why? Because the market
    is, again, life-blind
  1248. and decoupled from the science of
    life support and sustainability.
  1249. It is simply a proxy system.
  1250. The best way to think about this economy
    is not in the traditional terms,
  1251. but rather as an
    advanced production,
  1252. distribution and management system
    which is democratically engaged
  1253. by the public through a kind
    of participatory economics
  1254. that facilitates input processes,
    such as design proposals
  1255. and demand assessment, while
    filtering all actions
  1256. through what we will call sustainability
    and efficiency protocols.
  1257. These are the basic rules
    of industrial action
  1258. set by natural law,
    not human opinion.
  1259. As noted prior, neither of these
    interests are structurally inherent
  1260. in the capitalist model, and it is
    clear that humanity needs a model
  1261. that has this type of stuff built
    right into it for consideration.
  1262. Structural System Goals.
  1263. All economic systems
    have structural goals
  1264. which may not be
    readily apparent.
  1265. Market capitalism's structural
    goal, as described, is growth
  1266. and maintaining rates of consumption
    high enough to keep people employed
  1267. at any given time, and employment
    requires also a culture of real
  1268. or perceived inefficiency, and that
    essentially means the preservation
  1269. of scarcity in one form or another.
    That is its structural goal.
  1270. And good luck getting a market
    economist to admit to that.
  1271. This model [NLRBE] goal is to
    optimize technical efficiency
  1272. and create the highest level
    of abundance we possibly can
  1273. within the bounds of
    earthly sustainability,
  1274. seeking to meet human
    needs directly.
  1275. System Overview.
  1276. One of the great myths of this model
    is that it's centrally planned;
  1277. I'm sure many of us
    have heard this.
  1278. What this means based on historical
    precedent is that it is assumed
  1279. that an elite group of people basically
    will make the economic decisions
  1280. for a society.
  1281. No. This model is a collaborative
    design system: CDS.
  1282. Not centrally planned.
  1283. It is based entirely
    upon public interaction
  1284. facilitated by programmed,
    open-source systems
  1285. that enable a constant
    dynamic feedback flow
  1286. that can literally allow the
    input of the public on any
  1287. given industrial matter
    whether personal or social.
  1288. Now a common question, when
    you bring that up they say
  1289. "Well, who programs
    this system?"
  1290. The answer is:
    Everyone and no one.
  1291. The tangible rules of the
    laws of nature as they apply
  1292. to environmental sustainability
    and engineering efficiency
  1293. is a completely objective
    frame of reference.
  1294. The nuances may change to
    some degree over time,
  1295. but the general
    principles remain.
  1296. Over time, the logic of such an
    approach will also become more rigid
  1297. because we learn more as we
    perfect our understandings,
  1298. and hence, less room
    for subjectivity
  1299. in certain areas that
    might have had it prior.
  1300. Again I'll be describing
    this more so in a moment.
  1301. Also the programs themselves will be
    available in an open source platform
  1302. for public input and review,
    absolutely transparent.
  1303. And if someone noticed a problem
  1304. or unapplied optimization strategy,
    which will probably be the case,
  1305. it is evaluated and
    tested by the community
  1306. kind of like a Wikipedia
    for calculation,
  1307. except much less
    subjective than Wikipedia,
  1308. without the moody
    administrators.
  1309. Another traditional confusion
    surrounds the concept
  1310. which has become to many
    the defining difference
  1311. between capitalism
    and everything else.
  1312. And it has to do with whether
    the means of production
  1313. is privately owned or not.
  1314. This is replete throughout
    tons of traditional
  1315. literary treatments on
    capitalism when they describe
  1316. how it's the ultimate manifestation
    of human behavior, of society.
  1317. If you don't know what this
    means, the means of production
  1318. refers to the non-human assets that
    create goods such as machines,
  1319. tools, factories,
    offices and the like.
  1320. In capitalism, the means
    of production is owned
  1321. by the capitalist by historical
    definition, hence the origin of the term.
  1322. I bring this up because there's been
    an ongoing argument for a century
  1323. that any system which does not
    have its means of production owned
  1324. as a form of private property is just not
    going to be as economically efficient
  1325. as one that has or maybe
    not even efficient at all.
  1326. This, as the argument goes, is
    because of the need for price:
  1327. the price mechanism.
  1328. Price, which has a fluid ability
  1329. to exchange value amongst
    virtually any type of good
  1330. due to its indivisibility of value,
    creates indeed a feedback mechanism
  1331. that connects the entire market
    system in a certain narrow way.
  1332. Price is a way to allocate scarce
    resources amongst competing interests.
  1333. Price, property and money
    translate, in short,
  1334. subjective demand preferences into
    semi-objective exchange values.
  1335. I say "semi" because it is a
    culturally relative measure only,
  1336. absent most every factor that gives
    true technical consideration
  1337. to a given material or good.
  1338. It has nothing to do with what
    the materials or goods are;
  1339. it's just a mechanism.
  1340. Perhaps the only real
    technical data, in fact,
  1341. that price embraces very crudely
  1342. relates to resource
    scarcity and labor energy.
  1343. Resource scarcity
    and labor energy.
  1344. You can basically
    find that in price.
  1345. So in this context the
    question becomes:
  1346. Is it possible to create
    a system that can
  1347. equally, if not
    more efficiently,
  1348. facilitate feedback with respect
    to consumer preference, demand,
  1349. labor value and resource
    or component scarcity
  1350. without the price system, subjective
    property values or exchange?
  1351. And, of course, there is.
  1352. The trick is to completely
    eliminate exchange
  1353. and create a direct
    control and feedback link
  1354. between the consumer and the
    means of production itself.
  1355. The consumer becomes part
    of the means of production
  1356. and the "industrial complex"
    becomes nothing more than a tool
  1357. that is accessed by the
    public to generate goods.
  1358. In fact as alluded to
    prior, the same system
  1359. can be used for just about
    any societal calculation,
  1360. virtually eliminating the
    state government, in fact,
  1361. and politics as we know it.
  1362. It is a participatory
    decision-making process.
  1363. As an aside, as far as the fact
    that there will indeed always
  1364. be scarcity of something
    in the world,
  1365. which is the very basis of existence
    of price, market and money,
  1366. human beings can again either
    understand the dire need
  1367. to exist in a steady-state
    relationship with nature
  1368. and the global human
    species for cultural
  1369. and environmental
    sustainability, or not.
  1370. We can either continue down
    the same path we are now
  1371. or become more aware, responsible
    to the world and to each other,
  1372. seeking post-scarcity and using
    natural law rules of sustainability
  1373. and efficiency to decide how to best
    allocate our raw materials, or not.
  1374. But I think the former is
    the most intelligent path.
  1375. I state that because again,
    this resource argument
  1376. always comes down to the abstractions ...
    of scarcity.
  1377. It never qualifies what scarcity
    is in certain contexts.
  1378. It doesn't separate scarcity
    and that's its fatal flaw,
  1379. between human needs
    and human wants.
  1380. Also, I want to point
    out another fallacy,
  1381. which of this private ownership
    of the means of production,
  1382. a fallacy of this broad
    concept is its culture lag!
  1383. Today we are seeing a
    merger of capital goods,
  1384. consumer goods and labor power.
  1385. Machines are taking
    over human labor power,
  1386. becoming capital goods,
    while also reducing in size
  1387. to become consumer goods.
  1388. I'm sure almost everyone in this
    room has a home paper printer.
  1389. When you send a file to
    print from your computer,
  1390. you are in control of a mini-version
    of a means of production.
  1391. What about 3D printers?
  1392. In some cities today there
    are now 3D printing labs
  1393. which people can send their design
    to print, in physical form.
  1394. The model I'm going to
    describe is a similar idea.
  1395. The next step is the creation
  1396. of a strategically automated
    industrial complex
  1397. localized as much as possible
  1398. which is designed to produce,
    through automated means,
  1399. the average of everything any given
    region has found demand for.
  1400. Think about it: on-demand
    production on a mass scale.
  1401. Consider for a moment
    how much storage space,
  1402. transport energy
    and overrun waste
  1403. is immediately eliminated
    by this approach.
  1404. I think the days of large,
    wasteful mass producing economies
  1405. of scale are coming to an end,
    well, if we want them to.
  1406. This type of thinking:
    true economic calculation,
  1407. by the most technical sense of the
    term, I can't reiterate that enough.
  1408. We are calculating to be as technically
    efficient and conservative
  1409. as possible which again, almost
    paradoxically, is what will facilitate
  1410. a global access abundance to
    meet all human needs and beyond.
  1411. Structure and Processes.
  1412. I'm going to walk through
    the following 3 processes:
  1413. (1) the collaborative design
    interface and industrial schematic,
  1414. (2) resource management,
    feedback and value
  1415. and (3) general principles of
    sustainability and the macro-calculation.
  1416. The collaborative design interface
    is essentially the new market;
  1417. it's a market of ideas.
  1418. This system is the first step
    in any production interest.
  1419. It can be engaged by a single
    person; it can be engaged by a team
  1420. if you have friends and you want
    to put it together, sort of like
  1421. how businesses think; it can
    be engaged by everyone.
  1422. It is open source
    and open access,
  1423. and your concept is open to
    input from anyone interested
  1424. in that good genre or anyone that's
    online that cares to contribute.
  1425. Obviously it comes in the form
    of a website, as I stated;
  1426. and likewise, whatever
    exists as a final decision,
  1427. whatever is put into production,
    even though in theory
  1428. everything will be under
    modification at all times,
  1429. but what has been approved, if
    you will, is digitally stored
  1430. in a database which makes that
    good available to everyone.
  1431. Sort of like a goods catalog,
  1432. except it contains all of
    the information digitally
  1433. that is required
    to produce them.
  1434. This is how demand is assessed.
  1435. It's feedback and
    it's immediate.
  1436. Instead, of course,
    of advertising
  1437. and the unidirectional consumer
    good proposal system, which it is,
  1438. that we have today where corporations
    basically tell you what you should buy
  1439. with the public generally
    going with the flow,
  1440. favoring one good component
    or feature, using price,
  1441. if they don't like something then
    clearly they won't produce it anymore
  1442. to weed out supply and demand.
  1443. This system works
    the opposite way.
  1444. The entire community has the
    option of presenting ideas
  1445. for everyone to see and
    weigh in on and build upon.
  1446. Whatever isn't of interest simply
    won't be executed to begin with.
  1447. There's no testing here such as
    you would see with marketing,
  1448. which is incredibly wasteful.
    It's as simple as that.
  1449. The actual mechanism of proposal
  1450. will come in the form of an
    interactive design interface
  1451. such as we see with computer-aided
    design, or CAD as it's called,
  1452. or more specifically
    computer-aided engineering
  1453. which is a more complicated
    synergistic process.
  1454. As an aside, some see computer-aided
    design programs as they exist
  1455. as having an enormous
    learning curve, and they do.
  1456. But just as the first computers
  1457. were very difficult
    code-based interfaces
  1458. which were later replaced
    by small little programs
  1459. in the form of graphic icons
    that we're all so familiar with
  1460. the future CAD-type programs could
    be oriented in the exact same way
  1461. to make them more user-friendly.
  1462. Obviously, not everyone
    has to engage in design.
  1463. Some people, like most people today,
    appreciate what's been created prior.
  1464. They absorb and they use what
    other people have come up with.
  1465. So there's a diminishing law of returns
    in a lot of ways, if you will.
  1466. Not everyone has to get in there
    and has some role to do this.
  1467. But many will and many
    will enjoy the process.
  1468. And you can customize things as
    you go which is a great point.
  1469. There's minor things that can happen
    with a product that someone doesn't know
  1470. anything about, but maybe they just
    want to change the color and that's it.
  1471. Obviously, that doesn't
    take a lot of education.
  1472. More importantly,
    technically speaking,
  1473. the beauty of these design and
    engineering programs today
  1474. is that they incorporate
    advanced physics
  1475. and other real-world,
    natural-law properties.
  1476. So a good isn't just viewable
    in a static 3D model.
  1477. It can be tested, right
    there, digitally.
  1478. And while some testing capacity
    might be limited today,
  1479. it's simply a matter of focus
    to perfect such digital means.
  1480. For example, in the automotive industry,
    long before new ideas are built,
  1481. they run them through similar
    digital testing processes,
  1482. and there's no reason to believe
  1483. that we will not eventually be
    able to digitally represent
  1484. and imitate and set in motion virtually
    all known laws of nature in time,
  1485. and being able to apply
    them to different contexts.
  1486. Similarly, and this is critical,
  1487. this design that's proposed
    in this system is filtered
  1488. through a series of sustainability
    and efficiency protocols
  1489. which relate to not only the
    state of the natural world
  1490. but also the total
    industrial system,
  1491. in as far as what is compatible.
  1492. Processes of evaluation and suggestion
    would include the following:
  1493. strategically
    maximized durability,
  1494. adaptability,
  1495. standardization of
    genre components,
  1496. strategically integrated recycling
    conduciveness, as I mentioned before,
  1497. and strategically conducive
    designs themselves,
  1498. making them conducive
    for labor automation.
  1499. I'm going to go through
    these, each quickly.
  1500. Durability just means to make the good as
    strong and as long-lasting as relevant,
  1501. the materials utilized comparatively
    assuming possible substitutions
  1502. due to levels of scarcity
    or other factors
  1503. would be dynamically calculated
  1504. likely automatically, in
    fact, by the design system
  1505. to be most conducive to an
    optimized durability standard.
  1506. Adaptability.
  1507. This means that the highest
    state of flexibility
  1508. for replacing component
    parts is made.
  1509. Has anyone seen this thing
    called "phonebloks?"
  1510. Brilliant.
  1511. In the event a component part
    of this good becomes defective
  1512. or out-of-date, whenever
    possible the design facilitates
  1513. that such components
    are easily replaced
  1514. to maximize full
    product life span.
  1515. Standardization of
    genre components.
  1516. All new designs either conform to
    or replace, if they're updated,
  1517. existing components which are
    either already in existence
  1518. or outdated due to a comparative
    lack of efficiency.
  1519. Many don't know this, but a
    man named Eli Whitney in 1801
  1520. was the first to really apply
    standardization in production.
  1521. He made muskets and back
    then they were handmade,
  1522. and they were not interchangeable,
    so the musket parts,
  1523. if anything broke, you couldn't
    take a part from something else.
  1524. He was the first to actually
    make the tools to do this,
  1525. and he basically started the
    entire process of standardization,
  1526. and the US military was now able
    to buy huge things of muskets
  1527. and interchanged them and,
    much more sustainable,
  1528. even though they
    were killing people.
  1529. Which is interesting for the military
    because if you think about it,
  1530. the military is one of the most
    efficient systems on the planet
  1531. because it's absent
    the market economy.
  1532. If you really want to look to where
    industrial efficiency was born,
  1533. as much as I dislike it, the
    military is where it becomes,
  1534. where it's been harnessed
    the most, excuse me.
  1535. Anyway, this logic not only
    applies to a given product,
  1536. it's applied to the entire
    good genre: standardization.
  1537. By the way, this efficiency will
    never happen in a market economy
  1538. with its basis in competition,
    as proprietary technology
  1539. removes all such collaborative efficiency.
    No one wants that.
  1540. No one wants to share
    everything like that.
  1541. Otherwise, people wouldn't have a
    need to go back to the root company
  1542. and buy the part; they
    would go somewhere else
  1543. where they'd have access
    to it through other means.
  1544. Recycling conduciveness.
  1545. As noted before, this means
    every design must conform
  1546. to the current state of
    regenerative possibility.
  1547. The breakdown of any
    good must be anticipated
  1548. and allowed for in the
    most optimized way,
  1549. and made conducive for
    labor automation.
  1550. This means that the current
    state of optimized
  1551. automated production is
    directly taken into account
  1552. seeking to refine the process-
  1553. excuse me- seeking to refine
    the design that's submitted
  1554. to be most conducive to the
    current state of production
  1555. with the least amount of
    human labor or monitoring.
  1556. We seek to simplify the way materials
    and production means are used
  1557. so that the maximum number
    of goods can be produced
  1558. with the least variation of
    materials and production equipment.
  1559. It's a very important point.
  1560. These five factors will be
    what we can call in total
  1561. the optimized design-efficiency
    function, if you want to be technical.
  1562. Keep this in mind as I'm going to
    return to all of this in a moment.
  1563. Moving on to the industrial
    complex, the layout.
  1564. This means that the network of
    facilities, which are directly connected
  1565. to the design and the database
    system I have just described.
  1566. Servers, production, distribution,
    recycling is basically it.
  1567. Also, we'd need to relate the
    current state of resources,
  1568. critically important, as per the
    global resource management network,
  1569. another tier, which I'm going
    to also describe in a moment.
  1570. Production- this means of
    course actual manufacturing-
  1571. would evolve, as expressed
    before, as automated factories
  1572. which are increasingly
    able to produce more
  1573. with less material inputs and
    less machines: ephemeralization.
  1574. If we were to consciously design out
    unnecessary levels of complexity,
  1575. we can further this
    efficiency trend greatly
  1576. with an ever-lower environmental
    impact and resource use
  1577. while maximizing, again, our
    abundance-producing potential.
  1578. The number of
    production facilities,
  1579. whether homogeneous or heterogeneous,
    as they would be called,
  1580. would be strategically
    distributed topographically
  1581. based around population
    statistics, very simple stuff.
  1582. It's no different than how
    grocery stores work today
  1583. where they try to average
    distances as best they can
  1584. between pockets of people
    and neighborhoods.
  1585. You could call this the
    'Proximity Strategy'
  1586. which I'll mention
    again in a moment.
  1587. Distribution.
  1588. This can either be directly
    from the production facility
  1589. as in the case of on-demand
    custom one-off production,
  1590. or it can be sent to a
    distribution library
  1591. for public access en masse,
  1592. based on demand interest
    in that region.
  1593. The library system is where
    goods can be obtained.
  1594. Some goods can be
    conducive to low demand
  1595. and custom production
    and some will not be.
  1596. Food is an easy example of a
    mass production necessity,
  1597. while a personal tailored
    piece of furniture
  1598. would come directly from the
    manufacturing facility once created.
  1599. I suspect that this
    on-demand process,
  1600. which will likely become equally
    as utilized as mass production,
  1601. will be an enormous advantage.
  1602. As noted, on-demand
    production is more efficient
  1603. since the resources are going to be
    utilized for the exact-use demand,
  1604. as opposed to the block
    things that we do today.
  1605. Distribution Library.
  1606. Inventory is accessed in a
    dynamic direct feedback link
  1607. between production,
    distribution and demand.
  1608. If that doesn't make sense to you,
    all you have to think about is
  1609. how inventory accounting
    and tracking works
  1610. in any major commercial
    distribution center today
  1611. with, of course, a few
    adjustments made in this model.
  1612. We're already doing this
    type of stuff already.
  1613. Regardless of where the
    good is classified to go,
  1614. whether it's custom or not,
    libraries or to the direct user,
  1615. this is still an access system.
  1616. In other words, at any time
    the user of the custom good
  1617. can return the item
    for reprocessing,
  1618. just as the person who obtained something
    from the library can, as well.
  1619. Since, as noted, the good
    has been pre-optimized
  1620. (all goods are pre-optimized
    for conducive recycling)
  1621. odds are the recycling facility
    is actually built directly in
  1622. to the production facility or the
    genre of production facility,
  1623. depending on how many facilities you
    need to create the variety of demand.
  1624. So again, there's no trash
    here: whether it's a phone,
  1625. a couch, a computer,
    a jacket, a book,
  1626. everything goes back to where it came
    back from, for direct reprocessing.
  1627. Ideally this is a
    zero-waste economy.
  1628. Resource Management,
    Feedback and Value.
  1629. The computer-aided and
    engineering design process
  1630. obviously does not
    exist in a vacuum.
  1631. Processing demands input from the
    natural resources that we have.
  1632. So connected to this design
    process, literally built into the
  1633. optimized design-efficiency
    function noted prior,
  1634. is dynamic feedback from an
    Earth-wide accounting system
  1635. which gives data about
    all relevant resources
  1636. which pertain to
    all productions.
  1637. Today, most major industries
    keep periodic data
  1638. of their genre materials as
    far as how much they have,
  1639. but clearly it's
    difficult to ascertain
  1640. due to the nature of corporate
    secrets and the like.
  1641. But it's still done.
  1642. To whatever degree ...
    technically possible this is,
  1643. all resources are
    tracked and monitored,
  1644. and in as close to real
    time ideally as possible.
  1645. Why? Mainly because we need
    to maintain equilibrium
  1646. with the Earth's regenerative
    processes at all times
  1647. while also, as noted before,
    work to strategically maximize
  1648. our use of the most
    abundant materials
  1649. while minimizing anything
    with emerging scarcity.
  1650. Value.
  1651. As far as value, the
    two dominant measures,
  1652. which will undergo constant
    dynamic recalculation
  1653. through feedback as
    industry unfolds,
  1654. [are] scarcity and
    labor complexity.
  1655. Scarcity value without
    a market system
  1656. could be assigned a numerical
    value, say one to 100.
  1657. One would denote the
    most severe scarcity
  1658. with respect to the current rate
    of use, and 100 the least severe.
  1659. 50 would mark the
    steady-state dividing line.
  1660. For example, if the use
    of wood lumber passes
  1661. below the steady
    state level of 50,
  1662. which would mean consumption is
    currently surpassing the Earth's
  1663. natural regeneration
    rate, this would trigger
  1664. a counter-move of some kind,
  1665. such as the process of
    material substitution,
  1666. hence the replacement for wood
    in any given future productions,
  1667. finding alternatives.
  1668. And of course, if you are a free
    market mindset listening to this,
  1669. you are likely going to object at
    this point by saying "Without price,
  1670. how can you compare value of one
    material to another or many materials?"
  1671. Simple: you organize genres or
    groups of similar-use materials
  1672. and quantify, as best you can,
    their related properties
  1673. and degree of efficiency
    for a given purpose,
  1674. and then you apply a general
    numerical value spectrum
  1675. to those relationships, as well.
  1676. For example, there are
    a spectrum of metals
  1677. which have different efficiencies
    for electrical conductivity.
  1678. These efficiencies
    can be quantified,
  1679. and if they can be quantified,
    they can be compared.
  1680. So if copper goes below the 50
    median value regarding its scarcity,
  1681. calculations are triggered
    by the management program
  1682. to compare the state of other
    conducive materials in its database,
  1683. compare their scarcity level
    and their efficiency,
  1684. preparing for substitution,
    and that kind of information
  1685. goes right back to the designer.
  1686. Naturally, this type of reasoning might
    indeed get extremely complicated
  1687. as again: numerous resources and
    numerous efficiencies and purposes
  1688. which is exactly why it is
    calculated by a machine, not people.
  1689. And it's also why it completely blows
    the price system out of the water
  1690. when it comes to true resource
    awareness and intelligent management.
  1691. Labor Complexity.
  1692. This simply means estimating the
    complexity of a given production.
  1693. Complexity, in the context of
    an automated-oriented industry,
  1694. can be quantified by
    defining and comparing
  1695. the number of process
    stages, if you will.
  1696. Any given good production
    can be foreshadowed
  1697. as to how many of these stages
    of production it will take.
  1698. It can then be compared to
    other good productions,
  1699. ideally in the same genre, for
    a quantifiable assessment.
  1700. The units of measurement are
    the stages, in other words.
  1701. For example, a chair that can
    be molded in three minutes
  1702. from simple polymers in one
    process will have a lower
  1703. labor complexity value than a chair
    which requires automated assembly
  1704. down a more tedious production
    chain with mixed materials.
  1705. In the event a given process
    value is too complex
  1706. or inefficient in terms of what is
    currently possible in production,
  1707. or too inefficient by comparison
    to an already existing design
  1708. of a similar nature as well, the
    design, along with other parameters,
  1709. would be flagged and
    would be re-evaluated.
  1710. And again, all of this comes from
    feedback from the design interface;
  1711. and there's no reason to assume
    that with ongoing advancement
  1712. in AI (artificial intelligence),
  1713. we wouldn't be able to feedback not
    only the highlight of the problem
  1714. but would also create
    suggestions or substitutions
  1715. for you to understand
    in the interface.
  1716. [Macro]-Calculation.
  1717. Let's put some of this
    reasoning together.
  1718. I hope everyone
    can bear with me.
  1719. If we were to look
    at good design
  1720. in the broadest possible way with
    respect to industrial unfolding,
  1721. we would end up with about
    four functions or processes
  1722. each relating to the four dominant,
    linear stages of design,
  1723. production, distribution
    and recycling.
  1724. The following propositions should be
    obvious enough as a rule structure.
  1725. All product designs must adapt
    to optimized design efficiency.
  1726. They must all adapt to optimized
    production efficiency.
  1727. They must adapt to optimized
    distribution efficiency,
  1728. and they must adapt to optimized
    recycling efficiency.
  1729. Seems redundant, but this is
    how we have to think about it.
  1730. Here is a linear block schematic and
    the symbolic logic representation
  1731. which embodies the
    subprocesses or functions
  1732. I'm now going to very
    generally break down.
  1733. Process 1: The Design.
  1734. Optimized Design Efficiency.
  1735. A product design must meet
    or adapt to criteria set
  1736. by what we have called the
    current efficiency standards.
  1737. This efficiency process has
    five evaluative subprocesses,
  1738. as noted before earlier
    in the presentation:
  1739. durability, adaptability,
    standardization,
  1740. recycling conduciveness, maximized
    automation conduciveness.
  1741. Further breakdown of these
    variables and logical associations
  1742. can be figuratively made
    as well, of course,
  1743. which I don't think is conducive
    for this type of presentation
  1744. because we're going to get lost
    in ever- reductionist minutia.
  1745. But for more detail this stuff will
    be developed much more and be put
  1746. into this text as I've just described
    which will be available for free.
  1747. I'm going to try to do my best to give
    the general efficiency process here.
  1748. In the end, when it comes to this
    Design Efficiency process set,
  1749. we end up with this design
    function at the top.
  1750. Just to see it, I'll list all of
    the function meanings at the end.
  1751. We move on to process 2:
    Production Efficiency.
  1752. In short, this is
    the digital filter
  1753. that moves design to one of two
    production facility types.
  1754. One for high demand
    or mass goods
  1755. and one for low demand
    or custom goods.
  1756. The first uses fixed automation,
  1757. meaning unvaried production
    ideal for high demand,
  1758. and the second:
    flexible automation
  1759. which can do a variety of things,
    but usually in shorter runs.
  1760. This is a distinction
    that's commonly made
  1761. in traditional
    manufacturing terms.
  1762. This structure assumes only
    two types of facilities.
  1763. Obviously there could be more,
    based on the production factors.
  1764. But if the design rules in
    the process are respected,
  1765. as expressed before, there
    shouldn't be much variety.
  1766. Over time things get
    simpler and simpler.
  1767. So to state this, I'm just going
    to run through it for those that
  1768. like to hear things
    spelled out like this.
  1769. All product designs
    are filtered by a
  1770. demand class
    determination: process D;
  1771. the demand class determination
    process filters
  1772. based on the standards set for
    low demand or high demand.
  1773. All low consumer
    demand product designs
  1774. are to be manufactured by the
    flexible automation process,
  1775. all high consumer
    demand product designs
  1776. are manufactured by the
    fixed automation process.
  1777. Also both the manufacturing
    of low consumer demand
  1778. and high consumer
    demand product designs
  1779. will be regionally allocated
    as per the proximity strategy
  1780. of the manufacturing facility.
    This simply means
  1781. you keep things as close to you as
    possible, as close to the average
  1782. of any given demand as far as what
    type of facility you're using.
  1783. And this will change over
    time as populations change,
  1784. so you keep updating.
  1785. Process 3.
  1786. Once process 2 is finished, the
    product design is now a product
  1787. and it moves towards optimized
    distribution efficiency.
  1788. In short, all products are
    allocated based on the prior
  1789. demand class determination
    as noted before,
  1790. so low consumer demand products
    follow a direct distribution process,
  1791. high consumer demands follow
    the mass distribution process
  1792. which would likely be the
    libraries in that case.
  1793. Both low consumer demand and high
    consumer demand products will be
  1794. regionally allocated per the
    proximity strategy, as noted before.
  1795. And process 4, very simple, the
    product undergoes its life span.
  1796. Ideally it's been updated and
    adapted; ideally it's been used
  1797. to the highest degree and made as advanced
    as it could within its life cycle.
  1798. Once it's done it becomes void
    and moves on to process 4
  1799. which is simply optimized
    recycling efficiency.
  1800. All voided products will
    follow a regenerative protocol
  1801. which is a subprocess that
    clearly I'm not going to go into
  1802. because it's deeply complicated
  1803. and is the role of engineers
    to develop over time.
  1804. This is just a simple
    macro representation;
  1805. again these subvariables or subprocesses
    go on to quite a large degree.
  1806. Keeping all of this in mind, again,
    a lot of this will be in the text
  1807. and hopefully others, I
    think, can see this stuff,
  1808. that are fluent with this
    type of thinking, and hone in
  1809. and perfect these equations
    and relationships.
  1810. What I tried to do here
    is to give a broad sense
  1811. of how this type
    of thing unfolds.
  1812. As a concluding statement,
    more or less, the way
  1813. this extrapolation of
    sustainability and efficiency-
  1814. it's really quite a
    simple logical thing.
  1815. You don't have to be a rocket scientist
    to see how things work on this level.
  1816. Creating a real program
    that can factor in
  1817. what are hundreds if not thousands
    of subprocesses in algorithmic form,
  1818. as they pertain to such an
    economic complex is indeed
  1819. a massive project in and of itself,
    but it's more of a tedious project.
  1820. You don't need to be a genius
    to figure this stuff out.
  1821. I think this is an excellent
    think-tank program
  1822. for anyone out there that's
    interested in projects.
  1823. I have a number of little projects
    that I'm trying to get going
  1824. when I have time; one is simply
    called The Global Redesign Institute,
  1825. which is a macroeconomic
    approach to redesign
  1826. the entire surface of
    the planet, basically.
  1827. And in this other programming concept,
    we create an open-source platform
  1828. where people can begin to
    engineer this very program
  1829. that I'm describing.
  1830. That's it. I was going to make
    a conclusion to this talk
  1831. but it was already way too long.
  1832. So I just hope this gives a deeper
    understanding of the model,
  1833. how it could work and
    thank you for listening.
  1834. [Applause]