Thoughts on Beyond Utopia by Jacque Fresco

Beyond Utopia

Beyond Utopia is an essay written by the founder of The Venus Project.  The Venus Project is an organization devoted to a direction of sociological reform.  It is a vision that for me not only makes a lot of sense, but that I support.  I have written about some of its concepts on this forum, more of which I will discuss soon.  This I believe is a revolutionary idea.  I remember I set a goal to create an ideal for the progression of humanity.  I do not think I have to do it anymore, because this new system not only sounds appealing, but it is very possible.  I can tell he put a lot of years research into this idea, because a lot of his statements coincide with what science is learning through my own personal research.  For example, I have raved about the Humanist approach and the advancement of the study of human development.  Jacque Fresco talks about how if a new paradigm would be put into place, a new moral and incentive system would be in place.  This of course, through my readings, would change the development quite literally of the physical brain.  Hereby, coinciding with the change in development of thoughts and perceptions.  In essence, there would be new people.  People that would be foreign to greed, corruption, scarcity, and exploitation.  And, from the author Erich Fromm, humanity would be free to find their essence of man.  Being able to focus on this journey, life would seem to be more fulfilled.  Instead of worshiping man-made products, humanity would cultivate their own creativity and individuality.

The economical ideology of a given society has a great impact on how humans develop.  As Jacque Fresco has written about, a monetary system is in place to divide available resources.  People that do not have the buying power to posses resources that they need, not only feel marginalized by the overall society, but are in a constant state of a flight-or-fight response.  More fear is induced to the individual because we are talking about survival.  The fight-or-flight pathways in the brain actually become more sensitized.  This means that literally the distance of the synapses of the neurons in these pathways decrease.  Meaning, it takes less stimuli to initiate a response.  This leads to increased anxiety, and changed thinking that is geared towards fearing the worst outcome.  Anxiety disorders might emerge, ranging from social anxiety to general anxiety disorders.  Plus, anxiety is a central component to depression.  Anxiety can cause depression, and depression can cause anxiety, probably due to the lack of serotonin in the brain.  This means, that if a different economy was in place, there would be a different development of the human brain.  If scarcity would be eliminated, less people would resort to crime, because it would not be necessary to survive.  There would still be crime, simply because there are known cases where criminals have a genetic make-up that makes them more prone to violent acts.  (This is known by looking at the lives of severely violent criminals.  There are cases where prisoners were born in families that did not have known previous history of violent crimes, and grew up in a nurturing, caring, and affluent homes.  Yet, they had a history of violent acts.  The hypothesis is that their genetics brought about temperamental biases that created a certain response to their environment that resulted in violent behavior.)

So, with a different moral and value system that can be developed, the vision can succeed.  There is an old view, one that I have touched upon, that says it is human nature to be selfish, greedy, and corrupt.  If there was an economical system that promoted the well being of humanity and the planet as a whole, the acts of selfishness, greed, and corruption would not be the norm.  This is backed by science.

The Resource Based Economy takes the middle man out of the equation.  Money, or currency, is removed.  And no, the economy is not centralized around bartering.  Humanity has the know how to transport the world’s resources across the globe.  The access to resources is what dictates action.  Money is just a system to disperse those resources.  If we make the assumption that all the world’s resources belong to every human being on this planet, then the transportation of these various resources could meet the demands of the world.  Technology can and automation can easily make this feasible.  To maximize the usage of these resources, and with the elimination of the monetary system, products would be designed to maximize lifetime, eliminating planned obsolescence.  And I have touched based on this concept, and how this economy would be implemented.  Satellites with GPS tracking systems could easily monitor the world’s resources in real time.  They could record the consumption of these resources, and relay it to automated systems on the ground.  To ensure the availability of these resources in the future, restrictions on resources could be made in real time to everyone around the planet.  With scarcity removed through technology, humanity could deal with the world’s resources directly.  As Jacque Fresco has stated in his essay, it is resources that are the determining factor on getting things done.  When there are recessions, there are still phones, clothes, books, TV’s, you name it, that are still in the shopping windows.  People do not have enough money to buy those resources, even though they are still present.

Without scarcity, there wouldn’t be wars.  Why have wars?  Resources are provided to everyone.  With an automated global transportation system, renewable energy (to maximize resource consumption, after all, this energy source is renewable) and anything else that humanity could put their minds to, a more fulfilled life would be experienced.  With the advent of robotics and automated systems ranging from manufacturing to hydroponic farming, an increased standard of living with minimization of physical labor would be experienced.

One criticism I have with this paper, however Jacque has done so much with authoring and leading this initiative, is it does not provide a plan on how to transition to this system from the old monetary based systems.  This maybe my one of my next intellectual endeavors.  Hopefully I do it well.

In all, I enjoyed the read.  It was written very well too.  This is a life that makes a whole lot of more sense to me, as it is more humane.  With humanity caring and being closer to mother nature, and individuals finding their essence of man because they are able to not participate in physical labor, happiness, peace, and tranquility would be accomplished.  I really hope humanity opens up their minds to this idea.  It is in my experience, that people are not willing to change their ideals, no matter the mounds of evidence you put forth to them.  And this, I fear, means that a revolution of this magnitude must be forced.  But I will consider other options, of course.

Enlightening read!  I hope my readers take time to read up on The Venus Project and actually read this essay!  And I hope it is received well, for if there is enough backing a better life could be lived by everyone.

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