We're in for a wild ride. Exponentially accelerating technological, cultural, and socioeconomic evolution means that every year will see more developments than the previous one. More change will happen between now and 2050 than during all of humanity's past. Let's explore the 21st century and ride this historic wave of planetary transition with a confident open mind.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Communist Manifesto Simplified

Key message of Communist Manifesto in a simplified graph form. Also a brief discussion on what to do about efficiency gains inevitably causing global unemployment. Hint: Heavy investment into nuclear power and robotics the way Japan is doing.

Communist manifesto simplified

As far as summaries go, the Communist Manifesto seems the most concise in the world. Adam Smith never had to write a summary for the thousands of pages that he wrote. Nietzsche prided himself as being able to put as much in a paragraph as some put in a book but he also never experienced the pressure to explain all of his thought in a small booklet (that is also accessible to a person who is middle of the road when it comes to education). Marx's brain must have come close to an aneurysm in this process. A case can thus be made that every sentence in the manifesto is qualitatively more filled with careful thought and information than even Nietzsche's Anti-Christ.

It appears that the only major message of the manifesto is that efficiency gains on a planetary scale are rising faster than the demand for new workers and it will thus lead to increasing poverty and starvation for the average worker of the world (and in turn to a pre-revolutionary situation). The definition of the proletariat appears to be anybody who is not making money off the super profit from capital investments. This includes most of Western suburbanites who are living paycheck to paycheck (even if it is 200,000 euros or dollars a year).

Globalization is accurately predicted as well as many of the rich becoming impoverished and falling down into the growing proletariat pool as companies at the top buy each other out and consolidate. This means that the proletariat has many former millionaires and thus draws upon their education and talents. Class consciousness becomes possible once white collar suburbanites realize that they are in the same boat as Chinese blue collar workers, rural McDonalds workers, etc.

I have not seen anybody effectively tackle the problem of efficiency gains causing ever rising planetary unemployment. Countries like France and Sweden address the issue by artificially creating jobs within the welfare sector (people coming to your house to take care of your kids) and blatantly unneeded and ridiculous jobs (such as bus controllers who go on buses to check if people bought a ticket). This cannot go on indefinitely as even the demeaning service sector will soon be competing with robotics. Situation would be even worse in the Western world if many were not employed in high tech military-industrial complex infrastructure.

Westerners need to stop entertaining ideas of 7 billion people all being white collar professionals selling art, management, and marketing schemes to each other. They need to get over the stigma of bringing up the serious difficulty raised in the Manifesto and start discussing ways to avoid potential for violence and instability in the future. Many of the power elites understand the process but are overwhelmed by elites with interests within the status quo. Historically one faction of power elites moves to overthrow the other to maintain their power if the alternative is losing all of it (see former communists in Soviet Union). However, it is too dangerous to just wait for some oligarchs to join the proletariat calls (out of a sense of self preservation) for a high tech welfare state that utilizes robotics.

Japan appears to be preparing for the future by making such incredible investment into robotics. They will be set to barter their older robotics for food and commodities in the future and have a welfare state that makes North Europeans green with envy. One way forward for Westerners appears to be state involvement in strategic sectors while allowing capitalism to flourish on a light industry level. Mass scale investments into robotics and nuclear energy would be key. Japan's goal is to have robotics 1/3 of their economy by 2030s. Lets have a friendly competition. Robotics as focus would also inevitably bring attention of replacement of human workers and thus more productive discussion about building socioeconomic structures in the 21st century.

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