Welcome


Thank you for visiting our new forum! To start posting again please follow the link below to create a new password. First time forum users please follow the link to register. CFI thanks you for continuing the discussion on evidence-based thinking and humanist values.

What is a reasonable definition of a post scarcity society?


Forums Forums Politics and Social Issues What is a reasonable definition of a post scarcity society?

This topic contains 9 replies, has 6 voices, and was last updated by  Lausten 1 week, 4 days ago.

Viewing 10 posts - 1 through 10 (of 10 total)
  • Author
    Posts
  • #297419

    I Love Butter
    Participant

    Sufficient food, clothing and shelter?

    Sufficient food, clothing and shelter + laptop, telephone, television, microwave, bicycle, radio?

    Sufficient food, clothing and shelter + laptop, telephone, television, microwave, bicycle, radio, internet, bus pass, hot water, central heating, season ticket for Manchester united, 1 foreign holiday every 3 years, eating out once a week, lipstick, gym membership, pet dog?

    Sufficient food, clothing and shelter + laptop, telephone, television, microwave, bicycle, radio, internet, bus pass, hot water, central heating, season ticket for Manchester united, 1 foreign holiday every 3 years, eating out once a week, lipstick, gym membership, pet dog, pet cat, 1 acre garden, fishing equipment with licence, 1 Picasso painting and 1 Ming vase?

    I think you catch my drift. Given global warming is produced primarily by economic activity, should we not count our blessings, numerous as they are, and stop hoovering up the environment in the name of yet further material gains?

     

    #297437

    Advocatus
    Participant

    Most of the blame goes to the capitalist system which means that manufactures must keep churning out more and more goods into order to rake in more and more money, that means they have to encourage consumers to buy things that they don’t need.  But I think a large part of the problem is that individuals don’t realize how much their hunger for more material goods contributes to the overall problem.   Take a simple thing like trash on the highways.  In the 1920’s you never saw that.  People reused and recycled everything they could.  That was just the way they thought.  Nowadays you just chuck it out the window without a thought when you’re done with it and buy another one.

    • This reply was modified 2 weeks, 3 days ago by  Advocatus.
    • This reply was modified 2 weeks, 3 days ago by  Advocatus.
    #297442

    thatoneguy
    Participant

    Post-Scarcity societies don’t really exist except in theory. It seems to be mainly a science fiction concept.

    More to the point, even if we did live in that type of society we would still consume whatever is available because that’s what humanity does. We have no choice in the matter.

    #297443

    . . .  and it still won’t be enough to satisfy most people.

    #297447

    MikeYohe
    Participant

    Yes, I get your drift. Not to be picky but Climate Change is the what you are talking about. It is only a very little part of Global Warming. The earth has Global Warming and Global Cooling whether people are here or not.

    At the beginning of history in Babylon when you leased a house you had to provide your own doors and window shutters due to the shortage of wood products.  2000 years later in Rome, all the wood had been cut clear up to the Alps.  The government had to bake the bread and give it to the people because there was not enough wood for fires.  In pre-history the Rig Vegas tell use that seven times the populations expanded until they were reduced by plagues.  No doubt today, we are living in a material world today.

    I have to agree with oneguy, a Post-Scarcity is just a theory. We seem to have more than enough of material things today.

    #297453

    YOHE:   “Not to be picky but Climate Change is the what you are talking about. It is only a very little part of Global Warming. The earth has Global Warming and Global Cooling whether people are here or not.”

    You are such a deliberate idiot.

    Did I Say 30 Billion Tons of CO2 a Year? I Meant 40.

    Phil Plait, August 20,2014

    https://slate.com/technology/2014/08/atmospheric-co2-humans-put-40-billion-tons-into-the-air-annually.html

    Every now and again a global warming denier will say that humans aren’t putting much carbon dioxide into the air, and it’s less than a lot of natural sources. I’ve pointed out that in fact, humans throw about 30 billion tons of it into the atmosphere every year, 100 times as much as volcanoes do. I got that number from a paper published a few years back.

    Well, I just found out that paper is out of date. Guesss what the more accurate, current number for the human-made CO2 pollution put into the air every year is?

    40 billion tons.

    Yeah. 40. As in billions of tons. 40.

    That number comes from an assessment made by Le Quéré et al. in a paper measuring the total carbon budget for the planet in 2013. I found out about this new, updated number when I wrote about the launch of NASA’s Orbiting Carbon Observatory, or OCO. I mentioned the older number in the post, and got an email from David Crisp, OCO’s science team leader (!) correcting me.

    ==========================

    Separating Natural from Anthropogenic Influences in Twentieth Century Climate Data Records
    December 2008
    https://www.giss.nasa.gov/research/briefs/delgenio_05/
    ~~~~~~~
    Extreme weather explicitly blamed on humans for the first time
    Scientists take the bold step of saying phenomena wouldn’t have happened without global warming. – December 19, 2017
    https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-017-08808-y
    Also see – https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/scientists-can-now-blame-individual-natural-disasters-on-climate-change/
    ~~~~~~~
    How natural and anthropogenic influences alter global and regional surface temperatures: 1889 to 2006
    Judith L. Lean and David H. Rind | September 2008
    https://agupubs.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/pdf/10.1029/2008GL034864
    ~~~~~~~
    Contribution of human and climate change impacts to changes in streamflow of Canada
    GEOPHYSICAL RESEARCH LETTERS, VOL. 35, L18701
    Published online 2015 Dec 4. doi: 10.1038/srep17767
    Xuezhi Tan and Thian Yew Gan
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4669504/

    #297471

    Lausten
    Participant

    Still catching up with some of these good threads. Just a quick note. I heard somewhere recently that this idea that everyone wants more is a lie perpetuated by capitalism. There are very few examples of hoarding in nature. It could come from people wanting a better life for their children, but those are usually people who worked hard all their lives and know they grew up in an unfair system. It’s not even consistent that rich people want their kids to be richer. Many of them try to get their kids to understand the value of contributing to others. Some cut their kids out of any inheritance.

    #297476

    Good point, I live in a 600 square foot cabin with my wife and our dog, eight years now, hope we never need to move.

    I’ve worked on many trophy homes and MacTrophy homes and consistently I walk in look around and wonder why the hell do people want to shackle themselves like that.  They are owned by all the stuff they’re paying off, and yes seems never enough the way remodel perfectly good rooms, yet always on the edge, crying to the painters about budgets, yet always bing spending.

    Back in the day ’90s I worked lots of banquets, weddings, bartended sometimes at a beautiful place.  The Tamarron north of Durango, behind the bar was a huge window looking on to the amazing scenery, yet time after time I’d have listen to these uppity yuppity fools doing nothing but bragging on their great deals, be it real estate or stock market – blind to everything but their greed and trying to one up the next guy and oh so proud of their successful dirty tricks.  But that’s America folks, look at the gold plated ignorant slob we elected as our President.

    A life of moderation and contentment with life, family, rhythms of our lives and all that.  Many people really love it, I can vouch for them.

    #297499

    ;- )

    Trees of Tempting Fruit – The Secrets of Nature
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RXFxs13Cu8U
    The Mostviertel, Austria’s pear country, stretches from the river Danube to the Alps, right in the heart of Austria.
    Pear trees are scattered across the landscape and produce 200 different kinds of pears.
    Their naturally tart fruits have been used for centuries to extract the delicious pear cider (perry)

    #297526

    Lausten
    Participant

    Somewhere around age 20 or so, I was aware of the world beyond my neighborhood, but still not quite aware of how complex the world was, I said we could just stop now. We could stop trying to make taller buildings, faster cars and get the ultimate coffee bean in every corner cafe. Instead, we could shift our focus on to the things that everyone throughout history has worried about, like not dying before age 30. I still believe that, even as I’ve watched with amazement as Starbucks has made it into the town square of Cuzco, Peru (rented from the Sisters who own the building). It’s not like I’ve hit on some new insight. It’s what leaders say they are for and it’s what the poorest people actually do. That is, consolidate resources in fair and equitable ways, using a sense of justice and mercy.

    It’s the idea that once your basic needs are met, you use the free time to learn about your environment and either work with it or affect it so you can continue to meet those needs. It doesn’t take a genius to figure out that helping others is part of that. It takes even less of a genius to figure out you can manipulate people’s caring nature to meet your needs in the short run. As my evangelical cousins say, they agree but have different ways of achieving this better future. They won’t say it directly, but those ways usually involve a zero sum attitude where people born in other places in the world are less deserving and people who read different books and do different rituals don’t deserve to live at all.

    As I near 60, I’ve seen value in tradition and ritual, and can even see how in times of severe environmental pressures, purity has it’s place. But when you start building compounds and stockpiling weapons, you’ve already lost the game. If you are reading this, it’s unlikely you’ve experienced anything close to severe environmental pressure. You may have missed a meal or survived on bread and ketchup for a while, but you had a safety net around you if had fallen any further. That’s as post scarcity as I think we need to consider. The engine for the economy of the world should then be to bring that everywhere.

    As for something like full automation of everything, I think that is Sci-Fi. You still need the energy to run it and the technology to make it work. As Bill Hicks said, “Let’s get this whole food/air deal figured out first.”

Viewing 10 posts - 1 through 10 (of 10 total)

You must be logged in to reply to this topic.