An Economy Based on Resources
Our current economic system can use some improvement. The government’s manipulation of currency, deficit spending, and bank bailouts are among many of the controversies that we have to deal with in modern times.
But I recently found out about an organization called the Venus Project that aims to replace the society we currently have with one that’s based on computer driven central planning. In this new hypothetical economy money doesn’t exist. The system will revolve around resources instead. The idea is that all the resources in the world belongs to everyone. And the way resources are used up and distributed is by a computer program. Right now we have enough food in the world to technically feed everyone, but poverty and hunger still exist. This new system would solve those kinds of social economic problems. A central artificial intelligence would keep track of all the oil, timber, fish, and other goods available, and it would manage the production and distribution of stuff in the most efficient and environmentally sustainable way so that everyone would have enough. In such an economy that is based on resources, there would be no use for money. 😕 The Venus Project also claims it will shorten the work day and raise the standard of living higher than what most people realize is possible.
Although I agree that the status quo needs to be challenged I don’t think the Venus Project is the right solution. In fact, I don’t think its proposition is even possible at this time. There are a lot of concerns about the project that have yet to be addressed. Personally I don’t understand how an economy can even function without a price mechanism.
Money doesn’t just simplify life. It also bolsters stability in a market so we can budget in a predictable fashion. 🙂 Money can be anything as long as most people accepts it as a medium of exchange. It can also be used as a store of value.
The co-founder of the Venus Project, Jacque Fresco, argues that “greed and envy are a creation—a side effect—of the current monetary system and the profit motive.” But I disagree. I think greed and envy will still remain in society even if we live in a world without money. There also haven’t been any test runs or experimental systems of this kind of economy working yet. I also don’t know how a computer software could remain objective about making economic decisions for everyone when it’s programed by people who have different biases and lifestyle preferences. On the surface this ambitious project sounds like an egalitarian paradise. But so does communism, until we dig a little deeper and realize it’s impractical to assume that everyone is sufficiently altruistic in nature. Nevertheless, the group has been around for decades, has a large Facebook following, and millions of YouTube views with 98% approval ratings on its more popular videos. So apparently lots of people think the Venus Project is a good idea.
Random Useless Fact:
Nintendo shares shot up 25% on Monday this week thanks to the unexpected popularity of its new game, Pokemon Go.