Tag Archives: the venus project

The world doesn’t owe you a living

“People who are successful do not owe you a living. Stop jealously coveting the success of others, get off your backside, and work at being successful yourselves, instead of expecting government to steal the fruits of other peoples’ labour for your consumption.”

“The world does not owe you a living, you owe the world something. You owe it your time, energy and talent so that no one will be at war, in poverty or sick and lonely again.”

“We’re in the middle of a recession, it’s an employer’s market, and the world doesn’t owe you a living.
we paid the education when there was grants.we did’nt claim dole because we were brought up with a strong work ethic.we did’nt need self help books,we had common sense,and iniative.many of us fought for all the things you now take for granted.the world does’nt owe you a living.”

The above are all comments lifted directly (spelling and grammar included) from the Daily Mail’s website, but I have seen similar comments on Facebook and other social media recently too. Are these the comments of a free society?

The western definition of freedom is an incredible paradox – so why is it that we can’t see that? Now I admit, I have taken a very extreme cross-section of right-wing comments, but I find it amazing how many people on the left also fail to see this.

So capitalism, it’s time for you and I to have a serious chat.

You say that you don’t owe me a living, which is perhaps fair enough. We all have to work hard in this world; that’s what capitalism stands for. But then… well, until you start giving me free accommodation, food, water and energy (incidentally, all provided by the earth and therefore birth rights), I don’t actually have any choice but to work. So we have the welfare state, which is great. (What’s left of) it is there for me during the times that I’m unable to find work, or the times when I’m ill, or the time when, heaven forbid, I am hindered by disability. But should I choose not to work – which is surely the very definition of freedom – then I am, quite literally, left to die.

You threaten to withdraw my “benefits” (nice choice of word – makes me feel guilty) – the meagre amount of cash that, if managed well, allows me to only incur a small amount of debt in covering my day-to-day living expenses. You choose to label me and abuse me through the media in a way designed to guilt-trip me into either working, or perhaps choosing to remove my (financially draining) presence from your society. Anything that doesn’t fit into the traditional capitalist value system is sneered at and denigrated by corporate media and corporate-sponsored politicians. To illustrate the horrendous hypocrisy of capitalism, just look at the way the government, or more recently, private companies, pay care staff. These people are some of, if not the hardest working people in the world. Care staff traditionally have been amongst the lowest paid in the world. If that doesn’t illustrate that capitalism ranks people who work for profit higher than people who work for humanity,  then I don’t know what does.

And the clincher is this. I would LOVE to be able to live in a system that is not capitalism (or socialism/communism or any other form of capital-based system), but unfortunately you give me no choice.

I HAVE to live in a capitalist system. I was born into it, and I have very little control over it. Don’t even get me started on “democracy”.

So if I HAVE to live in a capitalist system, and the only way I can survive in that system is to work, then surely the world DOES owe me a living?

But hang on a minute, capitalism. Let’s be totally honest with each other here. I’ll start:

I don’t want your dull-as-dishwater £7ph (just so you can claim to be paying over minimum wage) job. I want access to the things that the cash I earn brings – and in my case I’m only talking about shelter, food, water and energy. I have no materialistic desires, I merely want to be free. But you insist that I must work for that privilege. Indeed, you insist that I must pay for that privilege with my life. Ironically, with my freedom.

But what about you? Oh yes, that’s right. You don’t want to employ me. Aside from the fact that I stand against everything that you stand for, you know that you would be much better off employing a machine to do that job. A machine doesn’t get sick. A machine doesn’t have emotional concerns. A machine won’t complain about their wages or working conditions.

So why don’t we just cut the crap and jump straight to the solution? Did you know that we are not using machines to their full potential right now? So many jobs can be automated using existing technology, but we continue to employ human beings in dangerous, low-paid and uninspiring jobs to “keep the economy going” so that “we can all contribute”. The economy. Something that doesn’t even exist. A human creation designed for one reason only – to keep the privileged elite at the top, and the ordinary people slaving away until they die.

Haven’t we gone beyond this? Surely we can see that we are all sacrificing our lives in the name of something utterly preposterous.

“Man surprised me most about humanity. Because he sacrifices his health in order to make money. Then he sacrifices money to recuperate his health. And then he is so anxious about the future that he does not enjoy the present; the result being that he does not live in the present or the future; he lives as if he is never going to die, and then dies having never really lived.” – Dalai Lama XIV

The good news is there is an alternative. The video at the end of this post is a good starting point for looking at potential solutions. Bear in mind that Jacque Fresco has spent his entire life working toward this, so you will not learn even one hundredth of a percentage of what is possible in the video. Follow the links below if you are genuinely interested in how to make a difference. I have been reading articles and watching videos for a couple of years now and I still feel like I understand less than one percent of Jacque’s work.

The Venus Project - When education and resources are available to all without a price tag, there will be no limit to human potential - Jacque Fresco

To learn about viable solutions to some of our greatest challenges as a human race visit www.thevenusproject.com.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Politics is not the answer

I’ve been asked a few times recently why I haven’t blogged on here lately. Truth is, I’ve been struggling to find the motivation, and tonight it hit me exactly why that is.

I went to see Andrew Simms’ talk at the Pavilion Theatre, part of the Brighton Festival. Andrew has recently written a book called “Cancel the Apocalypse”, which I have yet to catch sight of. I thought I’d go along and hear what Andrew had to say, the Festival brochure tempting me in with the following:

From bad banks to global warming, the world sometimes looks as if it is falling apart. But what if the only things holding us back are a lack of imagination and a surplus of old orthodoxies?

Andrew started his talk by telling us that Caroline Lucas is the godmother to his daughter, and later mentioned “his friends at the Guardian (newspaper)”. He then presented us with some detail about the levels of carbon dioxide in the air and the timescale needed to adjust them to a safe level.

Comparing economics to fantasy football, he then presented his fantasy economy, listing all the aspects that he would like to see in his personal utopian economical system. The list of ten or twelve points included a generous president who lived like the rest of us, a true democracy representing civilians, a banking system with fair rewards and punishments and a renewable/sustainable green economy.

Andrew then proceeded to tell us how this IS all possible, citing real examples from other countries, from the Uruguayan President to the green economy of Nicuragua.

Now I admire his enthusiasm, and there was nothing to criticise within Andrew’s performance or presentation. However, it got me thinking…

Andrew presented these suggestions as radical and suggested that the only thing that stops these sort of changes coming about in this country is a lack of awareness – in part due to the corporate-controlled media. He was given a rousing round of applause when he had finished.

But now it was question time.

I couldn’t help myself and I had to ask: “Andrew, thank you for your presentation. I can see that you’ve clearly done a lot of research, and I wondered why you stopped short of advocating a resource based economy?”

Andrew asked me to briefly explain what a resource based economy is. I very briefly explained the overarching concept of The Venus Project, and Andrew responded that he didn’t want to offer something that didn’t allow people choice. I then explained (rather weekly, as my voice had gone) that the Venus Project is absolutely not about that.

The next person then asked a question about the Labour party, and Andrew talked about how Labour are unwilling, or at best very slow, to take on board new or radical concepts.

Which, ironically, is my point. I stand by my view that, as good as Andrew’s suggestions are, they don’t go far enough.

A system based around politics and the monetary system will always be open to corruption. It will always lead to scarcity in parts of the world. It will always lead to unnecessary deaths in the name of profit. And mankind will never reach it’s potential (utopia is unobtainable, we can only ever be the best we can based on the knowledge we have at that given point) while we rank human life based on their “economic” output. The political system cannot be fixed. It IS the old orthodoxy, and needs to be replaced.

And THAT is why I now very rarely blog on politics.

EDIT: You can now watch the full talk online, including my question and my shiny head.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,