Posted from the U.S.
I think that it is a good time to get back on the original agenda of this blog - fixing the world (not a simple problem). I started the site during Easongate in the beginning of 2005 and quite a bit focused on the various shades of blogging vs. the mainstream media and all those colors. But I do think that now is a good time to get on with bigger issues and larger fish to fry.
How to fix the world?
Clearly not an easy problem, but here is a list of where to start:
- Governance - is it time for a new model of human governance? Why have so many allowed so few to assume significant power and control over their lives? Why do so many allow so few to rule over them? There are almost always far fewer leaders than followers, but how many of our leaders been motivated by the true general interest and welfare of those following them, and how many have simply exploited their positions of power?
- Energy - The avoidance of truly focusing on renewable energy sources (wind, water, solar, hydrogen power, grain) will be a huge problem for all of us in the near future. We need to put the old days of oil & coal behind us and adapt now to a new way of living and commuting. A global, proactive and early shift to green, clean, and renewable energy will also create a new mindset in all societies - it will be a lower impact way of being and thinking and working. We will not need to struggle for energy resources if we focus on those renewable resources which for our purposes can be in practically infinite supply. The technology is already here and getting better all the time. The hundreds of billions of dollars spent by the U.S. in the Iraq war, spent on renewable energy, would have rendered the Middle East oil concerns - and terrorism - obsolete. The war is won by winning independance from oil - and ultimately allowing the rest of the world to leave that part of the world to be in peace and to go about their own business. The Middle Eastern control over energy would and should diminish significantly as we shift green, clean, and renewable - and ultimately those countries will lose power and influence. By being less important to societies with different cultures, there can be a significant rebalancing of power. The oil rich states become poor, or they invest in technology and other industry and join the modern world - but they no longer would wield such a controlling influence over so many countries, and their systems of government may need to shift away from those kings with oil money and brute power to modern governments that are less monochromatic.
- War & Conflict Resolution - The concept of war needs to end - it's really stupid and no one likes to do it when they can think about it clearly. When a war is over there is a lot of regret, and soldiers after a war often feel misled and damaged, physically and mentally, by their experience. The time leading up to war is often a major con game & brainwashing by both sides. The losers of war are always the common soldiers and civillians stuck in the middle - the everyday people on both sides essentially getting screwed up and abused by their leaders. When one sees the reconciliation today between soldiers who fought with each other in WWII - now old men who have grown wiser with time, one wonders what was the point - sick, insane leaders on all sides caused the deaths of millions for what? Yes, we do need to fight the good wars - but the good wars should be the population stopping their leaders from war. The general population needs to get smarter and see the end result in the beginning. Let the leaders fight and kill each other - and let it end there. But this is too simple - humans may be hardwired for war and charged for violence. We get off on violence and we like shooting at things and blowing things up. We like video games and movies where we shoot things and blow things up, and we also like to do it for real. The dark reality of war is that in a sick way there is a rush that both sides feel, a need to kill. Until we can stamp that out from the human neural wiring, we may always have war. However, this does lead to a different concept about how to end war - if we are hardwired for it, maybe that can be changed. In this age of neuroscience we are going to understand soon the details of the software/wetware of our minds, and we'll learn how to program it. Perhaps not today, but maybe in the next few decades we will actually have the possibility to rewire that part of us that longs for war. Who will rewire us, and how? And what of those who did not get rewired - would they have power over all the rest?
- Interpersonal conflict resolution & mental illness - We are our own worst enemy. How can there be peace in the world when we can hardly have peace between two people? When we really have no good idea how to really treat mental disorders at the neurological level? We need to learn how to repair the brain the way we can repair other organs. World peace means the sustained, continuous resolutions of conflicts between billions of people. We need to teach conflict resolution the way we teach math - and societies need to measure their success on a low-level in order to achieve wider, high-level success. We need to move away from a police system that keeps the peace out of fear and deals out after the fact punishment to a system of embedded conflict resolution as a part of every citizen's daily life.
- Freedom & Oppression - We need to become citizens of the world - a free and unoppressive world. War to create freedom is one thing - but freedom can be better created in the minds of all populations, and they can begin to demand it themselves. We do not need the freedom to do anything - only freedom to live our lives without harming others, and the freedom not to be harmed by others. The people of the world do not need their leaders to set them free - they need to do it themselves. Just demand it, on a large scale, and it will happen. The large scale is the difficult part, because fear keeps the oppressed down. What breaks that fear down is an interconnected, open way to communicate. The web and things such as blogs will start to illuminate to many the lies of oppressive leaders - and those who want to know and see reality can find it. It will be very hard to control the flow of information, and losing that control makes it very hard to keep down and oppress a large population.
There are things happening in the world today that can end many old systems in society - old, oppressive, dysfunctional systems. However, before that happens, those in power will struggle violently against such a change - a change which takes their power and distributes it widely. The massively distributed connectivity of the web is a precursor to a much more radical change in society. One person - one voice - one vote - with no one in-between. The funny thing about this revolution is that it will likely be bloodless - that cat's already out of the bag, it is already happening. None of this can be undone, and its effects were not really expected or planned by anyone in particular. What's happening in the world is not like the old "isms" like communism or socailism. It has no real name but it is happening and when you recognize it you will see how far and wide it has permeated, and how far and wide it will keep going. We're in a big change, and it is visible in many ways - the good parts and the archaic struggles against it. Change does not fix the world, but it does provide an opportunity to tweak those parts that are clearly a mess.