On Tue, Oct 18, 2016 at 8:12 PM, Bruce A. Metcalf <bruce.metc...@figzu.com>

> But occupying the time of the vast hordes of bored and restive
> non-creatives will be a challenge, and it's a challenge I have not yet seen
> addressed anywhere this side of Orwell.

A good and stable society offers something for all to do.

There's a pyramidal shape to the psyche of most humans and to most
societies, starting with the vast base which is in survival mode (At least
80% of humanity still lives on less than $10 a day.) It doesn't matter what
the current tribal game is, monarchy, communism, anarchy, econo-narcissism
aka capitalism, this base will be primarily occupied with the meat and
potatoes of life, with little hint of flavor of the prevailing tribal game.

A smaller tier will focus on maximizing sexual desirability and social
status within the structure of the current game. Which usually means
growing up the ranks in a party structure in a dictatorial  game, or
growing rich and handsome in an econo-narcissistic game.

Stagnant lotus eaters can exist anywhere in these levels, but it is a very
temporary phase, they will either get pushed up or down eventually.

A still smaller tier will seek personal fulfillment through the exertion of
will - by bettering themselves through mental and physical exertion - not
for economic or social reward, but for the sake of the activity itself.
Typically such people might accumulate advanced academic degrees, or, run
marathons or climb mountains when they don't have to, to name a few

There are tiers above this to do with being selflessly loving, kind,
generous, inward looking, intuitive, wise, creative, holy, saintly -
however, society historically usually ignores these populations as being
too small to be of consequence.

Trying to plan a new social order is like trying to dig up a safe passage
for a river in flood. No one wields enough power to shape the landscape or
wisdom to predict a safe route.

Left unimpeded the river flows through the easiest route with the least
obstructions, which means it avoids tall mountains and favors the low
lands. In the case of the human psyche this means a partiality towards
survival, sex and power and an avoidance of tall peaks like creativity,
wisdom, kindness and unity.

A creative and wise society can only evolve when the low lands are
completely inaccessible. For this reason a largely creative or wise society
is impossible as long as there's bottomless consumption and consumerism for

All Governments (somewhat benevolent dictatorial opiate structures) are
like check dams, they eventually break down, but as long as they exist they
are useful in lessening the trauma of the flood. Everyone knows a dammed
river grows turbid and stale, and can't remain dammed for too long anyway -
hence Arab spring, Occupy Wall Street, anti-beef riots, Pepe the Frog etc.
and its opposition, secret prisons, NSA panopticons, legal marijuana,
caliphate, libertarian and hindutva dreams and social media echo chambers.

Ideally societies would invest in making the low lands unattractive and the
tall peaks accessible. Which would obviously mean eradicating poverty,
globally a cost of $5 trillion or so, roughly the bill for the American led
War on terror so far. The bill is far lesser to eradicate poverty in a
single country, like the USA. Far easier and worthy than an NSA Panopticon
or a manned mission to Mars. However it is not in the interest of
government structures anywhere to completely eradicate poverty, one of the
primary levers of social control. Some poverty eradication can be attempted
from time to time, but with the awareness that none of the structures of
social control would work well without poverty.

Meanwhile, when a large number of people used to being successful in the
game are suddenly sitting on the benches, not actively participating in
economic success, universal basic income or affordable healthcare will do
little to calm them. It's natural they will turn to a change agent, a
revolutionary demagogue who unleashes them on the check dams of the game
only to build new check dams down river.

Since nobody is making the low lands unattractive, this is the cycle of
imprisonment of society since nearly the beginning of time with a few
isolated golden ages.

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