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Thread: Open Letter to Transition Towns

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    Open Letter to Transition Towns

    This is a re-post from a while ago but deserves another viewing.....and hopefully some discussion this time around. It's also similarly related to several other transition/RBE topics that have grown a bit long imo......

    We need to talk about LAND my friends.....because as Thoreau advised us...unless and until we do, all of our efforts, no matter how noble, will simply represent chopping/pruning at the branches while the ROOT is ignored.....(and we all know which part of society ignoring the ROOT benefits, right?)

    Enjoy;


    https://www.progress.org/articles/an...ansition-towns
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    Quote Originally Posted by droneBEE View Post
    This is a re-post from a while ago but deserves another viewing.....and hopefully some discussion this time around. It's also similarly related to several other transition/RBE topics that have grown a bit long imo......

    We need to talk about LAND my friends.....because as Thoreau advised us...unless and until we do, all of our efforts, no matter how noble, will simply represent chopping/pruning at the branches while the ROOT is ignored.....(and we all know which part of society ignoring the ROOT benefits, right?)

    Enjoy;


    https://www.progress.org/articles/an...ansition-towns
    The transition question.

    I read the essay, It seems to me Martin Adams is stuck in a loop, possibly trying to conserve the existing system.

    The problem appears to be related to land ownership, rather than land steward ship. Ownership of most land in the world was taken by force, prior to this it belonged to nobody. The only resource we can truly own is our own labour, and what we give to a community. With steward ship of the land, you manage it, to benefit society, and yourself, and future generations. At the end of your steward ship it belongs to nobody. Steward ship(not ownership) may be a better way of managing resources.

    If steward ship was granted by a community of a given area to groups or individuals to allow land to be used in a certain way, housing, business, parkland, recreation etc. The best use for the community may arise. Continued stewardship is allowed when it is beneficial to everyone. The size of a community could be a household, town city, or country.
    Last edited by Handy andy; 09-23-2016 at 09:40 AM. Reason: grammar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Handy andy View Post
    The transition question.

    I read the essay, It seems to me Martin Adams is stuck in a loop, possibly trying to conserve the existing system.

    The problem appears to be related to land ownership, rather than land steward ship. Ownership of most land in the world was taken by force, prior to this it belonged to nobody. The only resource we can truly own is our own labour, and what we give to a community. With steward ship of the land, you manage it, to benefit society, and yourself, and future generations. At the end of your steward ship it belongs to nobody. Steward ship(not ownership) may be a better way of managing resources.

    If steward ship was granted by a community of a given area to groups or individuals to allow land to be used in a certain way, housing, business, parkland, recreation etc. The best use for the community may arise. Continued stewardship is allowed when it is beneficial to everyone. The size of a community could be a household, town city, or country.
    Martin Adams....stuck in a loop? ....trying to conserve the existing system? ...Perhaps a re-read is in order......cuz I think you may have missed something from the essay....

    TBH, your response above (absent the initial brush off) sounds a lot like the advise offered in His Book "LAND" (have you read it?).....That said, you may want to give the Man another chance, give the essay another read......take the opportunity to stretch out.....just a bit....

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    Some issues that might arise from this type of Economy would probably be the same we have Today with Capitalism, No? Maybe not trying to 'conserve the existing system' but in some ways in a possible loop.

    I mean it's still a System using Money so that in itself might produce similar issues we have Today in this System. Also as far as Leadership/Decision Making, how would that be carried out in a most consistent Logical form possible? And how would something like the Educational System be carried out. How would people learn things like Environmental Awareness, Science, Holistic Approaches, Righteous Values and so on.

    These are just some of the questions I still have with all new Economic Systems that purport to fix the problems we have Today. Don't get me wrong. I'm all for these new Systems such as the Green Parties 'Green Economy' for example but still I'm not able to fully understand how they can get rid of some of our basic Failures that arise from Any Monetary System. But still I agree that they are mostly better than Free Market/Regulated Market Economies.

    I strongly feel that the further we get away from the Monetary Model of Economics to something opposite to it, we'll get closer to solving these issues and others that have plagued Humanity since who knows how long. But first we Need to focus & talk more specifically about our Economic Problem and Less about other Distractions such as Politics or Religion or Countries or Crime or whatever... Today people are mostly avoiding the Economic Questions and everyone is quick to talk about the other issues which mostly derive from the Economic ones. Our Problem today is that the World is Distracted and in Disorder running around arguing & yelling at each other never really concentrating too long on what our Economy is doing to us.

    We basically just look like a 'Giant Circus', with people putting on a performance based on their held beliefs of the World that serve to Entertain and Profit their fellow supporters & Leaders.
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    I read "Land" by Martin Adams, and I agree with the main message: private ownership of nature's resources is pathological; and speculation and profit from value which is created by the community is theft.

    However I also agree with Ernest -- this is not the whole story. Adams proposes community land contributions as a solution as claims it will solve all problems. Yes, it probably has the potential to solve the most acute problem. But, in a market economy, will not companies continue to be powered by the course after profit? Will not people continue to exploit each other and try to climb the hierarchy? Will we not continue to be bombarded by advertisements for this goods or that service? Will not insurance companies continue to refuse payments, and people continue to go too often to the doctor because they need to amortise their insurance costs? Will not monopolies continue to make products obsolete by design? Or video game companies design their games for dependency? etc, etc...

    EDIT: Not to mention automation and how it will take people's jobs. Does Adams foresee the case where the land is owned collectively but the robots working it are owned by a private company? (as well as the GMOs)
    Last edited by Phil; 09-27-2016 at 02:58 AM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Phil View Post
    I read "Land" by Martin Adams, and I agree with the main message: private ownership of nature's resources is pathological; and speculation and profit from value which is created by the community is theft.

    However I also agree with Ernest -- this is not the whole story. Adams proposes community land contributions as a solution as claims it will solve all problems. Yes, it probably has the potential to solve the most acute problem. But, in a market economy, will not companies continue to be powered by the course after profit? Will not people continue to exploit each other and try to climb the hierarchy? Will we not continue to be bombarded by advertisements for this goods or that service? Will not insurance companies continue to refuse payments, and people continue to go too often to the doctor because they need to amortise their insurance costs? Will not monopolies continue to make products obsolete by design? Or video game companies design their games for dependency? etc, etc...

    EDIT: Not to mention automation and how it will take people's jobs. Does Adams foresee the case where the land is owned collectively but the robots working it are owned by a private company? (as well as the GMOs)
    By properly identifying the ROOT causes of 'all of our most pressing' issues, along with Implementing Adams suggestions, and those of Henry George (the world's greatest economist IMO) would at least bring about the end of our 10,000 year reign of KINGS, QUEENS and TRUMPS, .....You know,......the billionaire class v slave class....would/should that not be a goal worth pursuing?


    (we're still a very long way from Robots/technology solving the problems we all helped create and sustain.....waiting for someone or something to save us is still a contrived version of 'messiah worship' IMHO .....and won't bring us very far along in the end.....WE must do the WORK ourselves on ourselves....and not rely on Robots or technology to save us from us.....Doing so is only another level deeper into the pit we created and find ourselves today)


    .....sorry for the rant......
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    Quote Originally Posted by droneBEE View Post
    By properly identifying the ROOT causes of 'all of our most pressing' issues, along with Implementing Adams suggestions, and those of Henry George (the world's greatest economist IMO) would at least bring about the end of our 10,000 year reign of KINGS, QUEENS and TRUMPS, .....You know,......the billionaire class v slave class....would/should that not be a goal worth pursuing?


    (we're still a very long way from Robots/technology solving the problems we all helped create and sustain.....waiting for someone or something to save us is still a contrived version of 'messiah worship' IMHO .....and won't bring us very far along in the end.....WE must do the WORK ourselves on ourselves....and not rely on Robots or technology to save us from us.....Doing so is only another level deeper into the pit we created and find ourselves today)


    .....sorry for the rant......
    I agree completely with you on the first part -- YES that's a goal worth pursuing.

    I think you misunderstood my meaning when I mentioned the robots: far from saving us, they will likely cause our demise, at least in a market economy: land ownership or no land ownership, the companies creating the robots will still own them, and they will still take people's jobs, preventing them from earning an income. To make an RBE work, I believe current technology is enough, so I am not waiting for any saviour.
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    Quote Originally Posted by droneBEE View Post
    By properly identifying the ROOT causes of 'all of our most pressing' issues, along with Implementing Adams suggestions, and those of Henry George (the world's greatest economist IMO) would at least bring about the end of our 10,000 year reign of KINGS, QUEENS and TRUMPS, .....You know,......the billionaire class v slave class....would/should that not be a goal worth pursuing?
    Yes of course but,

    I still see this type of Monetary System still producing a form of Hierarchy because that would still probably be a motivator for some. And when we have People Leading & making decisions based on who knows what, that's when we run into Problems like Past Economic Systems have shown. IMO, when Science & Technology become the main focal point in how an Economic System should function, it takes away the Motivation & Need for People to have to become Leaders & make Decisions. An Economic System should make this a Primary Objective. But the difficulty I see hear is trying to accomplish this in Any Monetary System.

    So if we then are trying to Solve our Problems. Can we do it solely dependent & guided by the "reasoning" of the Human Mind? Or do we need to look towards other mechanisms at our disposal like Science & Technology to help bring about the Relevant problem solving plans that can truly tackle these issues from their Root Causes.

    Essentially what I'm saying is that I lack trust in the ability for People Alone to solve our Problems. An Economic System still relying on People to Govern its Socioeconomic landscape to me will always bring with it the usual & unforeseen problems that go with Societies who try and operate in this manner. Monetary Systems are just rife with all the mechanism that bring about these type of outcomes.
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    Quote Originally Posted by droneBEE View Post
    By properly identifying the ROOT causes of 'all of our most pressing' issues, along with Implementing Adams suggestions, and those of Henry George (the world's greatest economist IMO) would at least bring about the end of our 10,000 year reign of KINGS, QUEENS and TRUMPS, .....You know,......the billionaire class v slave class....would/should that not be a goal worth pursuing?
    the goal is worth pursuing, but it is very hard to achieve without political and public will. i'm also not convinced that Adams suggestions can cure most of our problems, because it neglects so many problems in our society, the main one being the monetary system, so just implementing a new tax system on land won't solve everything.
    I'm also not sure that there is only one root but if there is its probably not land. land is a very important resource, but what you do on the land is equally or even more important. if you keep perpetuating the monetary system while on the land it contaminates all the land beneath you, because you exhaust the land, drill it, spill chemicals, and restrict access.

    Quote Originally Posted by droneBEE View Post

    (we're still a very long way from Robots/technology solving the problems we all helped create and sustain.....waiting for someone or something to save us is still a contrived version of 'messiah worship' IMHO .....and won't bring us very far along in the end.....WE must do the WORK ourselves on ourselves....and not rely on Robots or technology to save us from us.....Doing so is only another level deeper into the pit we created and find ourselves today)
    mechanization of the workforce is going strong for over a hundred years, and there's no stopping in sight. machines are not our "saviors" but they are extensions of human capabilities.
    a forklift can carry much more weight than humans, machine in assembly line produce more products and higher quality, a micro-chip can execute billions of operations per seconds using tiny transistors. and slowly but surely computers would take decisions better than humans.
    i work with both humans and computers/machines and i tell ya, humans make mistakes all the time. they are unpredictable and fickle, their mood changes constantly. on the other hand machines are precise , reliable and predictable, and since i program them i know exactly what they're going to do. if they make mistake i improve the code.

    i do agree with you that there are techno-utopians who look at machines like a messiah but im not one of them.
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    The system we seek to eliminate begins with LAND, how we treat it and most importantly ...Who controls it, because whoever controls Land also controls us....

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