“The price of anything is the amount of life you exchange for it” Henry David Thoreau
We are not a job driven people, our lives are larger than that.
Yet, we use most of our adult lives working jobs for money. The result of social value structures based on wealth. The myth is; you are more valuable because you have more money. This structure has been evolving since humans learned to enslave animals and each other in order to accomplish more work and increase private holdings, property, resources and goods. Today, our economics that thrives on competition and selfishness, has created slavery for everyone, which I define as ‘no control over our time’. This phenomenon includes the wealthy. We are all treading in place trying to maintain our survival or our privilege. “The mass of men lead lives of quiet desperation.” Thoreau.
When stress rises in a population a significant percentage of the people affected will chose to find scape goats for their increased discomfort. Usually this simmers unexpressed below the surface. But when there is a leader, a President for example, who gives permission for misplaced hatred to be expressed aloud and acted upon, there is the danger of violence and the oppression that follows which can lead to totalitarian government. We are all capable of hatred and goodness. We are driven by selfishness and selflessness. Capitalism is based on competition and selfishness. It tips the population toward distrust and fantasy. Fantasy, because to have no empathy toward another person you plan to get the better of, you need to dehumanize them. To do this a person has to justify their feelings to themselves. We all do this to different degrees. This is where fantasy comes in the form of conspiracy theories, distortion of word meanings, and lies. The result is confusion which creates fear, and distrust which result in retreat into emotional and political comfort zones that polarize populations. Agreement becomes hard to find.
The dynamic of Capitalism is, competition that ultimately confines the wealth of a Nation into the hands of a minority. This is at odds with Democracy and Science. Traumatizing the majority of a population through anxiety about income and survival results in the dynamic described above. Democracy needs compromise and agreement to survive. Nature cannot thrive in the context of the endless growth demanded by profit economics. When a Nation is squeezed economically there will be a breaking point. When it will come or if it can be averted, no one knows.
The fundamental human drive that is manipulated and threatened by a Capitalist economy is survival. If basic human needs are met by a separate parallel economics we can change the socio/economic dynamic to “post scarcity”. No longer ‘not enough for everyone’, the treat and strangle hold of Capitalism. Food, shelter, education and healthcare become basic human rights; basic needs equal the real basic income. Every living human being is worthy of these things. From this start the expansion of humanity’s potential will flow exponentially. The destructive symptoms of ‘money before life’ begin to fade.
Already the experience of living through a pandemic has changed us. Some things have become less important, some more important. The scientific imperative of life threatening illness does not allow ‘economics as usual’. Our worldwide adjustments to the corona virus will change the way we conduct economics, permanently. Science and ‘for profit’ economics have always been at odds with each other. This has become glaringly obvious during the pandemic. The importance of science and the importance of humanity have proven to be the real value standard, not money. Nature must be protected, humanity must be protected. And we know how to do this. Basic needs are human rights.
Human energy is a kind of renewable energy. Our human energy propels society and economics. We need a dependable renewable currency to sustain Human energy needs. One that has no strings attached. One that cannot be gamed or invested. Social currency used for Basic Human Needs = Energy Currency.