• Minimum wage, gaia brain, commons management, starry night sky
  • Gaia Brain, Hegel, capitalism-communism synthesis, environment

    Minimum Wage and Gaia Brain
    From jchampag@lonestar.jpl.utsa.eduTue Jun  9 14:37:38 1998
    Date: Wed, 3 Jun 1998 12:10:52 -0500
    From: "John C. Champagne" 
    Newsgroups: alt.politics.reform, alt.politics.usa.misc
    Subject: Minimum wage, gaia brain, commons management, starry night sky
    
    Minimum wage laws seem to help those who have jobs at or near that wage 
    level, and those who make machinery that replaces low-skilled workers, 
    while it hurts those whose skills and experience make them somewhat less 
    valuable to an employer than what it would cost to hire them.  Minimum 
    wage laws harm everyone if the rising cost of labor causes employers to 
    choose a method of achieving their goals that causes more pollution or 
    depletion of resources than a more labor-intensive method would.
    
    We cannot create wealth by legislation, but we can alleviate poverty by
    ending the current practice of theft of natural resources from the people. 
    If we all own the air and water, that is, if we all have an equal right to
    use the air and water, and to say what limits we ought to place on the
    putting of pollution into the air and water, then we could attach fees to
    the putting of pollution, at a level that would result in the amount of
    pollution that the people deem permissible.  The fee proceeds could be,
    should be shared among all people equally.  After all, we would be
    measuring the economic value of something that we all own. 
    
    The same principle could be applied to the management of other commons
    resources.  The number and diversity of fish in the sea is decreasing.  We
    could attach a fee to the taking of those species that are threatened with
    depletion.  We could attach VERY HIGH fees to the taking or killing of any
    member of a species that we do not want anyone to take, so that no one will
    see that activity as profitable.  
    
    Biodiversity is being lost at a frightening rate.  Considering the pace of
    forest destruction and paving of wilderness areas, it is easy to wonder do
    we care what kind of world we will leave for our children.  We could
    charge a fee for any land use that disturbs or decreases biodiversity,
    from monoculture to asphalt, with the fee greater for the more harmful
    impacts on the earth.  With all people voting on whether the amount of
    paving, etc., on the earth is acceptable or should change, we would have a
    system where all people could share in sculpting the overall human impact
    on earth.  We would shape the world to match what we would want it to be. 
    
    The amount of money collected through fees on the putting of pollution and
    the taking and degrading of resources would be substantial.  We may not be
    able to afford such a system AND the current system of taxes on income and
    sales.  We may want to eliminate those taxes, or reduce them to negligible
    levels, (some sales tax would be appropriate, to cover the cost of
    policing the marketplace), and fund community services from fees on those
    things that we do that have an adverse impact on others, on the larger
    community and environment.  The monies collected could be shared among all
    people equally.  We could each spend an agreed-upon fraction, perhaps
    half, on community needs, (e.g.: libraries, schools, fire protection), and
    spend the remainder on our own personal needs.  We would all share in
    creating the kind of environment that we would choose, we would share in
    deciding what are our community priorities, and no one would live in
    abject poverty. 
    
    This gaia brain paradigm sees the role of government as an arbiter between
    the individual and community.  It recognizes no authority of government 
    to initiate the use of force against citizens.  Only those actions, by
    individuals or corporate entities, that adversely affect others would come
    within the purview of government.  In fact, government per se would not
    exist as we know it.  The decisions of government would become dispersed,
    decentralized to all the people.  I think this is an important point,
    because such profound change cannot occur except through the active
    support of the people.  Many people subscribe to the libertarian view 
    that the government ought not initiate the use of force against citizens. 
    I would expect that libertarians would enthusiastically embrace this
    paradigm if they are persuaded that it appropriately draws the line
    between regulated or restricted actions, (those that affect others or 
    the community), and actions which are the free choice of individuals, 
    (private behavior). 
    
    I think that the prevalence of outdoor advertising signs and billboards is
    too high to allow for an aesthetically pleasing visual landscape.  I think
    that the prevalence of outdoor lighting is so high that our ability to see
    the stars is deminished to unacceptably low levels.  (We may want to adopt
    a few "lights out" nights, to remind ourselves that there are stars out
    there.) If others share my views, our wishes can be translated to reality. 
    I hope that someday the power to decide these questions is put into the
    hands of the people.  It will be, if we, the people, care enough to take
    that power into our hands. 
    
    John Champagne   http://lonestar.utsa.edu/jchampag
    
    Gaia Brain Theory  http://lonestar.utsa.edu/jchampag/gaia.html
    
    Gaia Brain abstract  http://lonestar.utsa.edu/jchampag/abstract.html
    
    Cronkite for President  http://lonestar.utsa.edu/jchampag/cronkite.html
    
    Cronkite on nuclear war  http://lonestar.utsa.edu/jchampag/nuclear.html
    
    vote on Gaia Brain at MIT  http://learning.mit.edu/ide/BI/BI-031.html
    
            If you like this idea, please vote.  You can help to counter-act
    an apparent attempt at 'ballot stuffing'.  I noticed a burst of 40 votes
    in one day, (feb 11-12), that brought the rating down from 63% to 39%. 
    The rating climbed back up to 60%.  Then another burst came, (92 votes),
    and brought it down to 43%.  (If you don't like the idea, please share 
    your objections with me.  Thanks!)
    
    vote on my proposed response to these 'ballot stuffing' tactics:
          http://learning.mit.edu/ide/BI/BI-048.html
    
    Gaia Brain, Hegel, capitalism-communism synthesis, 
    environment
    
    From jchampag@lonestar.jpl.utsa.eduWed Jun 10 13:20:03 1998
    Date: Wed, 3 Jun 1998 12:29:04 -0500
    From: "John C. Champagne" 
    Newsgroups: talk.philosophy.misc, talk.politics.theory,
        alt.politics.radical-left, talk.politics.misc
    Subject: Gaia Brain, Hegel, Capitalism-Communism Synthesis, environment
    
    Hegel said that our ideas create reality.  He also said that a particular
    time in history is defined by a particular idea or set of ideas.  Over
    time, the contradictions or shortcomings of the dominant idea eventually
    show themselves.  A competing idea is proposed, in opposition to the
    dominant idea, to address these shortcomings.  It, too, has shortcomings. 
    At some point, the two ideas are synthesized into a new way of thinking
    that incorporates essential elements of the original thesis and its
    antithesis, thus creating a new starting point, a new dominant idea of an
    era.  Hegel called this process of thesis generating antithesis followed 
    by synthesis the historical dialectic. 
    
    Marx said that Hegel was right about the historical dialectic, but that 
    he was wrong about ideas creating reality.  Marx said that reality, or 
    material existence creates ideas.  I think it is time for a synthesis 
    of these two.  Is it not true that our ideas and our material world 
    affect one another, that there is a dynamic interaction between the two?  
    
    Is it not also time for a synthesis of capitalism and communism?  Could 
    we combine free markets and free movement of capital with ownership of 
    natural resources, (a means of production), vested in the people?  
    
    We could realize such a system by charging fees for use of natural
    resources, with the fees rising when most people believe that levels of
    resource use are too high and ought to be reduced, and falling when people
    believe that we can increase our use of resources without any harm to
    ourselves and future generations and without excessive harm to other
    living things on this planet.  The resource user fees would act as a
    sensory nervous system for the planet, transimitting information about
    injury to the earth to society, and causing reduction of that injury. 
    When we share the proceeds of these resource-use fees among all people
    equally, we will have created a system of ownership and management of
    natural resources by the people, in the context of free political and
    economic systems. 
    
    I think that this practice of asking and pondering what are acceptable 
    human impacts on earth would profoundly affect our mental and conceptual 
    development.  The gaia brain paradigm would translate our expressed 
    wishes--what we think ought to be--into reality. 
    
    
    Gaia Brain Summary
                                          
    
    John Champagne   http://lonestar.utsa.edu/jchampag
    
    Gaia Brain Theory  http://lonestar.utsa.edu/jchampag/gaia.html
    
    Gaia Brain abstract  http://lonestar.utsa.edu/jchampag/abstract.html
    
    Cronkite for President  http://lonestar.utsa.edu/jchampag/cronkite.html
    
    Cronkite on nuclear war  http://lonestar.utsa.edu/jchampag/nuclear.html
    
    vote on Gaia Brain at MIT  http://learning.mit.edu/ide/BI/BI-031.html
       
            If you like this idea, please vote.  You can help to counter-act
    an apparent attempt at 'ballot stuffing'.  I noticed a burst of 40 votes
    in one day, (feb 11-12), that brought the rating down from 63% to 39%. 
    The rating climbed back up to 60%.  Then another burst, (92 votes), 
    brought it back down to 43%.  (Maybe the designers of this site will 
    change the way the votes are displayed, so everyone will be able to see 
    which votes came in as part of a big burst of dozens of votes all from 
    the same source, all in the same hour.)  If you do not like the idea, 
    please share your objections with me.  Thanks!
    
    vote on my proposed response to these 'ballot-stuffing' tactics: 
            http://learning.mit.edu/ide/BI/BI-048.html
    
        1998 jchampag@lonestar.utsa.edu
    
    

    Gaia Brain: democratic ownership and free market management of natural resources

    Cronkite for President - Can we find someone, (someone over 35 years old), who we could most all agree on for our next President?

    1998 jchampag@lonestar.utsa.edu

    to the center of the Gaia Brain/Cronkite Draft page