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Slightly Updated & Selected Summary Graphics

 

FROM AN ORIGINAL PRESENTATION TO

CLASS OF DR. ROBERT DANNIN

"CRISIS OF THE MODERN AMERICAN CITY'

AT NEW YORK UNIVERSITY

THURSDAY APRIL 30, 1998

 

 

A FURTHER SUMMARIZED AND MUCH ABRIDGED

PRESENTATION ON THE OCCASION OF THE BESTOWING UPON ME THE

“HUMANIST OF THE YEAR – 2004”

AWARD

BY THE CHURCH OF HUMANISM/HUMANIST FOUNDATION ON

FRIDAY NOVEMBER 19, 2004

TO WHICH I AM DEEPLY GRATEFUL FOR THE HONOR

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

 

One Individual’s Idea About

 

PUBLIC ACCESS TELEVISION WITHIN A

WORLD SYSTEMS PATTERN OF UNDERSTANDING

Drawing Upon the Contributions Of:

R. Buckminster Fuller / Louis O. Kelso

And Others

 

This is very much an evolving work in progress

BY HAROLD H. CHANNER

PUBLIC ACCESS TELEVISION WITHIN A WORLD SYSTEMS PATTERN OF UNDERSTANDING

 

        PUBIC ACCESS PRODUCTION / DISTRIBUTION FREE TO PRODUCER

        OPEN TO ALL FOR NON MONETARY BASED COMMUNICATION

        EARLY EXAMPLE & AKIN TO NON COMMERCIAL USES OF INTERNET

        MODEL FOR OTHER NON COMMERCIAL BASED VENUES FOR EMERGING

COMFORTABLY LEISURED EXPRESSION OF THE FREE HUMAN SPIRIT

 

 

* IN TERMS OF ITS COLLECTIVE CAPABILITY MANKIND, AFTER 200,000 YEARS OF CULTURAL & TECHNOLOGICAL DEVELOPMENT, HAS TRANSCENDED MATERIAL SCARCITY - “A NEW REAL CAPABILITY” TO PROVIDE "LIFE SUPPORT" (WITHIN AN ECOLOGICALLY APPROPRIATE PATTERN) FOR ALL WORLD CITIZENS. IN TERMS OF CAPABILITY NOW MORE “HAVES” THAN “HAVE NOTS”.

 

* MOST IMPORTANT MILESTONE, OF THIS OR ANY OTHER, CENTURY. OBVIOUSLY THE TRANSITION IS IN OUR COLLECTIVE “DESIGN CAPABILITY” NOT THE ACTUAL MANIFESTLY INADEQUATE “REALITY” INHERITED FROM HISTORY. NEW POST SCARCITY “REALITY CAPACITY” HAS ONLY APPLIED SINCE THE YEAR 1970 – AGAINST ALL OF HUMAN HISTORY.

 

1. R. BUCKMINSTER FULLER 2. MARSHAL MCLUHAN

3. TEILHARD DE CHARDIN 4. RAY KURZWEIL

5. LOUIS 0. KELSO 6. MU-AMMAR AL GADDAFI

 

* INVOLVES TECHNOLOGICAL DISPLACEMENT OF LABOR IN PRODUCTION. PURPOSE OF THE INDUSTRIAL (AND POST INDUSTRIAL) REVOLUTION WAS - AND IS - TO PUT PEOPLE OUT OF WORK OR JOBS. DISTRIBUTION OF INCOME BY LABOR IS ALMOST UNIVERSAL BUT OUTDATED IN ECONOMY WHERE THE MAJOR AND INCREASING SOURCE OF PRODUCTION IS CAPITAL WHICH IS ALL OWNED BY A MINISCULE (PLUTOCRATIC) FEW. AN UNVOICED PARADIGM CLASH.

 

* TECHNOLOGICAL DISPLACEMENT OF LABOR REQUIRES A NEW ECONOMIC SYSTEM IN KEEPING WITH NEW REALITIES OF CAPITAL PRODUCTIVENESS RATHER THAN LABOR PRODUCTIVITY. OWNERSHIP MUST BE DISPERSED. AN UNVOICED CRUCIAL PARADIGM CLASH.

 

1. CHARLES HANDY (JOHN MAYNARD KEYNES)

2. LOUIS 0. KELSO / BINARY ECONOMICS

 

* ALL ACCEPTED ECONOMIC SYSTEMS (EXCEPT BINARY ECONOMICS?) ARE AND HAVE BEEN ESTABLISHED ON VARIOUS INTERPRETATIONS OF "THE LABOR THEORY OF VALUE” WHICH SEES LABOR AS THE PRIMARY OR ONLY LEGITIMATE SOURCE OF INPUT TO PRODUCTION. ALL SYSTEMS ASSUME THE SUPREME IMPORTANCE OF LABOR AND DISTRIBUTE MOST INCOME BY LABOR CRITERIA (JOBS). BINARY ECONOMICS ASSUMES TWO FACTORS OF PRODUCTION - LABOR AND CAPITAL AND PROPOSES DEMOCRATIZATION OF CAPITAL OWNERSHIP AS A PRIMARY COMPONENT OF BOTH CAPITAL FORMATION AND INCOME DISTRIBUTION – UNVOICED.

 

        UNIVERSALLY DISPERSED CAPITAL OWNERSHIP WILL: INCREASE ABILITY OF ALL TO PURCHASE WHAT CAPITAL INTENSIVE AUTOMATED SYSTEMS ARE CAPABLE OF PRODUCING - EXPAND MARKET DEMAND; INCREASE CAPITAL AVAILABLE FOR INVESTMENT IN ECOLOGICAL "COSTS"; ATTACK CAUSES OF POVERTY (LACK OF CAPITAL OWNERSHIP) RATHER THAN IT'S SYMPTOMS; STEADILY INCREASE THE NUMBERS OF THE COMFORTABLY LEISURED AND THUS REQUIRE MANY NON ECONOMIC VENUES FOR THE EXPRESSION OF THE HUMAN SPIRIT SUCH AS: PUBLIC ACCESS TV, FAIR USE OPEN ACCESS BASED INTERNET, NON COMMERCIAL EDUCATIONAL/CULTURAL INSTITUTIONS, OR WHATEVER ACTIVITIES A LIBERATED POPULATION WOULD WANT TO START – OUTSIDE THE DICTATES OF AN INCREASINGLY BYPASSED MARKET SYSTEM.

 

BUCKMINSTER FULLER GRAPH FROM HIS “WORLD GAME” FINDINGS OF THE PERCENTAGE OF THE WORLD POPULATION WHO COULD BE SEEN TO BE “HAVES” IN THE MODERN EXPERIENCE IN TERMS OF OUR ABSTRACT TECHNOLOGICALLY AUGMENTED "CAPABILITY" TO PROVIDE "LIFE SUPPORT" TO THE WORLD POPULATION. FURTHERMORE BOTH “GROWTH AND EQUITY” COULD BE REALIZED WITHIN AN ECOLOGICALLY APPROPRIATE MANNER THROUGH THE INCREASING ELEGANCE OF "GOOD DESIGN TEMPLATES” - “DOING MORE WITH LESS.” THINK MOORE’S LAW WRIT LARGE. HE PROJECTED FROM THE YEAR 1952 “A TWENTY YEAR PERIOD OF IMMINENT CRISIS TO ALL HUMAN INSTITUTIONS AS WE APPROACHED AND CROSSED THE 50% MARK”. HE LIVED OUT HIS LIFE IN THE BELIEF THE PROCESS HAD ACCELERATED AND THAT WE CROSSED THE 50 % MARK IN 1970. REMEMBER THIS IS “CAPABI LITY” NOT ACTUAL “REALITY.” HHC

 

JAY BALDWIN

Bucky Works: Buckminster Fuller’s Ideas for Today

John Wiley & Sons Inc. 1996

*************************************************

 

Earthman’s Critical Moment

 

“Think of It. We are blessed with technology that would be indescribable to our forefathers. We have the wherewithal, the know-it-all to feed everybody, clothe everybody, give every human on earth a chance. We know now what we could never have known before – that we now have an option for all humanity to “make it” successfully on this planet in this lifetime. Whether it will be Utopia or Oblivion will be a touch-and-go relay race right up to the final moment.”

Buckminster Fuller, 1980

 

Historically, according to Fuller, all theories of economics, all political ideologies have been founded on one basic tenet – the fundamental scarcity of life support. “It has to be either you or me, not enough for both.” Buckminster Fuller was the first to scientifically and incontrovertibly find that there is ample to support all humanity.

 

We have never been in this position before, according to Fuller. 1970 marked a turning point in man’s technological evolution. The “invisible” metallurgical, chemical and electronic revolutions now makes it possible to do far more with ever less resources, energy, and time investments. …………………………………………………. JAY BALDWIN

 

As inconvenient to the established Paradigm as “Post Scarcity Economics” would obviously be there have been a wide variety of projections of the concept. Below are some suggested links of the many attempts to assert the major premise. All obviously call for fundamental definitions of terms such as “What is the standard by which “have ness” is defined & of course the countless assertions defining “Human Nature” as inherently greedy with human desires unlimited and insatiable hence never able to be met” et al. But the time is ripe for new modeling and discussion and even argumentation based on a serious examination of the basic assumption itself. This rather than the seemingly wide spread default attitude of dismissing the concept as ipso facto absurd and/or naive thus routinely “overlooking” the possibility of what could well be the major “Paradigm Shift” in the History of Mankind. Political and business leaders would understandably have the most difficulty comprehending the assertion – representing the major beneficiaries of the historically inherited institutional entities and belief systems. Indeed in the end they might well represent what amounts to a Modern Day Ancien Regime. But intellectuals and the masses of world humanity need not be so restrained as the Increasing awareness of an unavoidable growing gap between the World’s “Post Scarcity” Capability and its Performance will inevitably create unacceptable Political instability beyond even that so evident today. HHC

-------------------------------------------------------------------------

Some Links: Post Scarcity Economics / Whole Systems:

R. Buckminster Fuller                          Murray  Bookchin

               http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Post_scarcity 

James Lovelock                               World Transformation

  ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

 

Louis O. Kelso and Patricia Hetter Kelso estimates of the relative real inputs to production in the American economy of Labor (Physical and Intellectual) and Capital over time assuming reasonably competitive markets. So ingrained is the “ethic” of the “Labor Theory of Value” that they thought it best to refer to Capital Owners as “Capital Workers” in keeping with their understanding that Capital instruments do “Work” - as surely as the most diligent human surrogate worker – and that indeed the observable trend is for Capital Instruments to do ever more of the Worlds “Work”. The reflexive prevalent attitude of equating “Economic” man with Essential Human Values including the whole vast array of values around the “Work Ethic” all contribute to camouflage and maintain the fundamental miss-match between the way goods and services are produced and distributed and particularly their trends projected into the future. Cybernetic contributions (now almost exponential) are only adding to the much longer Historical trend. Represents US Economy but applies to World trending. HHC

Chart of concentration of capital ownership in the U.S. over time. The same general pattern applies to virtually all economies of and the World Economy as a whole – Plutocratic ownership and control of the real means of production. With “The Labor Theory of Value” it only worsens. HHC - Below Quotes @ www.kelsoinstitute.org

 

"Conventional wisdom says there is only one way to earn a living, and that's to work. Conventional wisdom effectively treats capital (land, structures, machines, and the like) as though it were a kind of holy water that, sprinkled on or about labor, makes it more productive. Thus, if you have a thousand people working in a factory and you increase the design and power of the machinery so that one hundred men can now do what a thousand did before, conventional wisdom says, 'Voila! The productivity of the labor has gone up 900 percent!' I say 'hogwash.' All you've done is wipe out 90 percent of the jobs, and even the remaining ten percent are probably sitting around pushing buttons. What the economy needs is a way of legitimately getting capital ownership into the hands of the people who now don't have it."
Louis O. Kelso, Journal Asset Based Finance, 1982)

 

"The trouble with today's techniques of finance is that they're designed to make the rich richer. None are designed to make the poor richer. That's why the poor are poor. Because they're not rich."
(Louis O. Kelso, San Francisco Examiner & Chronicle, 1978)

 

"The Roman arena was technically a level playing field. But on one side were the lions with all the weapons, and on the other the Christians with all the blood. That's not a level playing field. That's a slaughter. And so is putting people into the economy without equipping them with capital, while equipping a tiny handful of people with hundreds and thousands of times more than they can use."


(Louis O. Kelso, Bill Moyers: A World of Ideas, 1990)

Charles Handy citing the 1930 reference by Lord John Maynard Keynes projecting
“Technological Unemployment" for the future world of his grandchildren. That would be right about
now as technological advancement not only provides the possible means for Humanity’s collective
“Transcendence of Scarcity” but poses the problem to progressives by their commitment
(along with virtually all economic theorizing) to the “Labor Theory of Value” currently informing
virtually all National Economies on Planet Earth &the International System as well. HHC

 

Humanity's Current "Fork in the Road"

After 200,000 years of biological existence Humanity has arrived at a crucial juncture. On the one hand we possess weapons, which can obliterate the Species. On the other - an "Obverse Scenario" might well reveal an unprecedented capability for providing an ecologically sustainable and increasingly improved level of "Life Support" for all of Humanity. Two large ideas seem to have been "missed" by the World Intellectual Community, which are worthy of consideration in the quest for the Hearts and Minds and perhaps the very Survival of the People of the Planet:

 

1.      Humanity's technologically augmented productiveness has offered the Capability to provide "life support" to increasingly greater percentages of the World population through time. Serious investigation of the proposition could provide a measurement of Mankind's store of "Proven" Life Support in a manner similar to that used for assessing "Proven" Oil Reserves - a measurement of humanity's "Proven 'Life Support Capability.” Careful measurement would most likely demonstrate that in terms of our collective Capability, and within reasonable, if debatable, agreed to definitions of terms, there have been, for thirty years or so, more "Haves" than "Have Nots" ! This for the first time in all of human history. R. Buckminster Fuller, with his World Game assertions, attempted such a measurement and concluded humanity reached and crossed the 50% mark in the year 1970. This is about the same date we crossed the threshold of our "Proven" capability to obliterate the species. Intuition and pragmatic investigation have lead many, but not enough, to agree both with his monumental broad assertion and the date he came up with for the Transformation. If correct it has been realistically appropriate to say Humanity has existed in a "Post Scarcity" Ontological reality for 33 years. It is possible to assert that this change - if true - is one of the most important developments in the evolution of all Biological processes on this planet! Consideration of the many interrelated implications it presents is worthy of the highest priority on the agenda of Intellectual investigation and deserves a "front and center" place in the World's seriously concerned discussion, study and debate.

(The best source of investigating the proposition remains the writings of Buckminster Fuller and particularly the findings of his World Game Inventory of World Resources which provides the single best "Systems Template" for factoring in developments since he authoritatively introduced the concept. Back of the envelope calculations including recent near exponentially increasing cybernetic contributions - strongly indicate positive trends to date.)

GOOD SITE FOR INTRODUCTION TO R. BUCKMINSTER FULLER: WWW.BFI.ORG

 

2.      The increased productiveness of the World Economy and the "Transcendence of Scarcity" has not been able to adequately inform pragmatic political and economic thinking largely through the adherence to outmoded Economic Theory. The World Economic Model is not based on a workable understanding of the changed Ontological reality. It does not, or will not, address the questions involving both growth and equity required to allow real Systems efficiency in the time ahead. Currently all "accepted" economic theory (despite all protestations to the contrary) is predicated on various interpretations of the "Labor Theory of Value" which dictates that for the vast majority of the World population an individual's right to income is predicated on his or her labor (physical and intellectual) contribution to increased productivity. Virtually all non-labor aspects of production are owned by a relatively miniscule Plutocratic class at the very pinnacle of World Society - and their capital assets are increasingly responsible for actual production gains. There is no adequate provision for democratizing the access to capital credit for investment in assets which will pay for themselves out of their future earnings - to the citizenry of any individual Nation - or to the people of the World. Under current policy assumptions there is no way forward toward a workable World Economic Democracy. Given oncoming massive technological displacement of labor by capital assets (as Lord Keynes predicted for these very days) Economic Democracy must be a sine qua non goal of responsible systems analysis. Anemic, erratic growth rates and persistent economic underproduction will not allow Humanity to achieve sustainable levels much less realize it's "‘Proven’ Life Support Capability". Increasing awareness of an unavoidable growing gap between the World Economy's Capability and its Performance will inevitably create unacceptable Political instability beyond even that so evident today. The World Economic system currently in place must be seriously challenged by New Theoretical understanding and Economic policy assumptions.

 

(The best initial source for effectively arriving at a "Systems" Challenge to the unworkable Economic Status Quo is the "Outside the Envelope" thinking developed by Louis O. Kelso and Mortimer Adler in their earlier writings including The Capitalist Manifesto and currently in the pattern presented in the Book by Robert Ashford and Rodney Shakespeare: "Binary Economics The New Paradigm".
WEB SITE: WWW.KELSOINSTITUTE.ORG

 




 

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