The End of the Economy(cs)
by Adriano Autino
After the war in Kosovo, after the least politic elections of the Europes history (followed 3 days later), after the nth food scandal in the heart of Europe, this century seems to be proposing, near to its end, a quick review of its worst catalogue: a small Stalin (somebody even disturbed the ghost of Hitler, but even in Stalin we find the racism, the ethnical cleansing and the foolish nationalistic closure); the execution of the innocents around him (both by the dictator and by the zealous avengers); the anti-ethical cynicism of who poisons the food of everybody for his own profit; a non-democratic democracy, that registers the lower percentages of voters never seen before, the absolute negligence of all the (politic?) groups toward themes of real development or, we could say, for the continuation itself of the human civilization.
The Humanity appears, at the millennium, as folded on itself, unable to get up, over the daily big and small despairs, unable to draw a project equal to the real problems to be faced. I also dont think it is so difficult to explain (as we listen by many journalists, slaves of their political scientist job) why the voters is going once at left and once at right, just like a grain field under stormy winds. The explanation is easy. Both the right and the left wings are absolutely lacking of credible projects. With the progressive dissolution of the social classes they are also lacking of a real social base. Thus they end to aim exclusively on persons, looking for mythical leaders, by whose they hope the miracle: to make the masses follow after them in complete absence of programs. Rivers of words are wasted about the "detachment of the people form the politics and from the institutions". How could they claim that people follow with passion and interest the politics, if the politics neither try to analyze the real social situation, and to give answer to the real problems? Since years, here in Italy, they propose us some panaceas, claimed as solver of all the problems. The presidentialism and the bipolarity, for instance. But how to thrust in such solutions, when we see that, in the countries where the bipolarity exists since more years (proposed as democracy models), traditionally the voters are less than the 50% of the people having right to vote? And, in these last elections, the voters in UK were only 23%!
Im not against the bipolarity, the history showed that a sane dialectic can work as development engine (please remember the race to the space during the 50s and 60s). But somebody should show me that the two poles must be, forever, the right and the left. We should refer, during centuries and millennia, to a political system that saw its maximum brightness (if we can say so) during the industrial age, when the 90% of society was split in classes: on one side the bourgeoisie, owner of the production means, on the other side the proletariat, closed in the taylorist factories. On one side the Countries representing the liberal-capitalist thought on the other side the collectivist ideological area, each one with its aberrations and closures. I can bear the bipolarity, if it is modern, open and evolved, and no more closed in the nationalist insanity that permeated this century. For instance, Id like to see the development of a dialectic between ecologism and humanism (a modern conjugation of the regression vs. development contradiction). I state here and at once, for who doesnt yet know me, that I side without reservations with Humans. Later even more interesting dialectics could arise: the ones willing to enlarge the human presence on the Space Frontier vs. the ones oriented to give priority to the sea development. In this case the motivation of the choice will need some more words, but maybe my sons will face such a crossroads, so why to take care of it today? Nowadays we are well far away from any real politic dialectic. Still the politic leaders in charge ask us to choose between the job of the sons and the pension of the fathers, in a kind of "Russian roulette", called Economia (in Italian one only word, meaning both Economy and Economics). The dictionary tells us that the word Economy means Management of Scarce Resources, opposite to waste and prodigality.
But, pay attention: the resources are not at all scarce. Friends, we are made a fool by some boasters which went into politics because they found it an advantageous job! While these gentlemen still are sweating (if we can say so) trying to understand the society that was formed from the Industrial Revolution, the world stepped and passed trough the Electronic Revolution. The Terrestrial Society is radically changed: the Electronic Revolution, giving life to the Automation did throw the workers out of the factories, it is true. But, in the same time, the ER decreed the end of the taylorist way of production, repetitive and alienating (and I wonder to see who will spend a tear for the assembly line!). In the same time, the ER gave the means to millions people to open their own enterprise, in a gigantic phenomena of social emancipation! While trade-unionists and politicians tear their hairs for the so-called social "decay and fragmentation", and they produce the well-known litanies, invoking the mythic "jobs", there are millions people who became micro-enterprises. All those people would have a great benefit if they could have, say, a good market information, a systematic promotion of their skills, a coordination and a strumentation of the market, in a market environment finally free from any barriers and from the various mafias, bureaucracies and protectorates still dominant, more than ever active, notwithstanding Mani Pulite, and notwithstanding the historical opponent (the bogey of the socialist revolution, the fear of the expropriation) failed without appeal. A simple truth is still hidden: that the difference between an unemployed and a small entrepreneur is no more structural, economic, but it is only a cultural difference. And still the society is late to understand that, more than the freedom to dismiss (re-proposed by Mrs. Bonino as if it was the discover of the century), what we need is a real freedom of undertaking, nowadays existing only in theory, for very courageous persons (anyway they are not few) or forced by the reorganization. We need a modern definition of the concept itself of Freedom. Freedom, in the Electronic Age, could not mean to let everyone to make what he like, disregarding any rule, ethics and freedom of the others (as the deregulation extremists propose). The freedom we hope for can be achieved only thanks to the maximum analytical approach and the maximum technologic application, targeting the communication and informative means to a new concept of democracy. When the Outside will became a safer and more comfortable place than the Inside (of the big companies, and of all the obsolete Closed World models) even the unemployment will cease being such a big problem, thanks to the ceasing of the concept itself of subordinate employment. We will then finally see the realization of the miracle that seems impossible to the conservatives cost what it may of the ancién regime:
The only problem, for the companies, will be the one to keep in the collaborators (probably no more as subordinates, but as skilled partners), in a work relationship very much mature and on equal terms. The requirements will thus exist for an infinitely superior form of Market, over the Market of the goods: the Market of the Ideas, of the Know-how, of the Virtues and of the Skills. Such a market will take in the right account the high value of the education (at all the layers). On such a basis, finally the best humanist options will have the chance to compete, and only the best companies will survive, the really useful and excellent ones, for the persons, or for the Oikos, for the Polis or for the Human Kind. On such an higher platform, new peaks will raise up.
We, the Terrestrials, nowadays have technological means unthinkable until some decades ago, and a potential of work that the whole Galaxy would envy to us, if our TV-news could reach the ears of some ET :-)! Do you think that the Galaxy is too much? OK, lets take the Solar System, or even less. As a first step, lets take the geo-lunar space sphere. Enormous quantity of solar power flow in it: we just have to go there and take it. The Moon is rich of raw materials and water. Where water exist, even the Terrestrials can exist. This is the first step, the most difficult: to win the earthly gravitational well. After that, the road is all in descent, and leads surely to the End of the Economy, intended as Management of Scarce Resources. Humanity will gain access, finally, to a system of Infinite Resources. Such a simple fact will make finally and clearly obsolete all the politic and philosophic paradigms that ruled the world up to today.
If the resources are infinite the competition should frighten anymore neither the most incurable egoist ones, therefore there will be no more need to exterminate the competitors as they born (before they grow up and are able to claim a part of the same pie). The pie will be continuously growing. No more forced by the Economy, all the Terrestrials could greatly profit of the birth of even new markets. The emancipation of the Outcasters, their entrance into the market (both in the post-industrial and in the pre-industrial worlds) will be a further factor of development for all. Such a development will also no more fully weigh on the shoulders of our mother-planet. Humanity will see, in some generations, the proletarian and lumpen proletarian classes to dissolve. A mass middle class, free and libertarian, enlightened, well-off, progressive and well disposed toward all. I know that such a social set-up seems a blasphemy to the late Catholic-Communists, as they think that only the suffering is to be awarded, forever. And it will surely sound heretical even to the lovers of the privilege at any cost, that new, almost-noble, multinational caste (self-reproducing for hereditary right), as they feel belittled if others stop to dye starving. Such a caste made again actual, after two centuries, the claim of the human basic rights of equality among the persons. Not to speak of how such a development would appear to the Pecceis followers with their ecologist cupio dissolvi, as they think that Humanity should self-reduce, renounce to any development and possibly become extinct, in order to let the Nature become uncontaminated again.
If we just start to catch a glimpse of such a vision, of the end of the economy, we suddenly understand that Humanity needs, more than any other thing, a plan, a big project, to gain access to such a possibility. Things are not marching toward such a result, nowadays. The European elections show the distance of our politic leadership form such a high cultural, ethic and philosophic concept, and from any programmatic aim. The campaigns are bordered into advertising spots, as if the voters were unable to absorb more than few broken sentences. As the persons are judged unable to undertake and to will, and society keeps on thinking that they must forever to get the job by the Masters of the Market, so they are judged unable of any own political thought and attention. Unable even to follow the Political Tribune, the emissions that, years ago were broadcast in central hours. We are also judged unable to read and understand any electoral program; in fact we receive visit-cards of the candidates, even their curricula, but not a program. Instead, it is quite a program that we need.
For instance a Reusable Launcher, able to take passengers for Earth to Orbit and vice versa, will not be born without a strong political will, without a wide political-financial plan, allowing many private investors to enter the enterprise, and assuring them a return, even in longer times, respect the return time of normal investments. A first kind of customer was now detected: the Space Tourism. But such a customers cannot be born before the birth of a transportation mean, safe and cheap. The Technology of a modern Merchant Astronautics is available, the market not yet, but the urgency should now be evident. Therefore it is time to start the fantasy, and to develop new monetary flows, e.g. channeling part of the price of large consumption goods (a big project of Ethic Sponsorship), in order to create the funds to finance the enterprise, or enlarging the institute of the 8x1000, so that the citizens have the free choice to finance different Ethic Enterprises. Such enterprises will be targeted to the production of urgent goods still lacking of market, or not commerciable. Lets think, for instance, to the hydro-geologic recovery of the lands, to the fight against the desert, and other very useful activities for the community.
We, Frontier Technologists, aim to build such a program and make it live, both proposing soon its basic items as seminars and education courses, and taking initiatives targeted to bring the goals inside the national and international political discussion.
We invite therefore all who follow our magazine, and maybe think to have their own original thoughts, to give their contribution, both to the elaboration of the program and to its exportation, becoming Teachers, or Commercial Agents, of Technologies of the Frontier!