Do The Freakin Math

Liberals and conservatives alike frequently rely on limited evidence, personal experience, religious beliefs or gut emotions to determine solutions for complex problems. From immigration to global warming - taxes to terrorism - or health care to free trade - analytical study is rare. Science based policy making isn’t the way of Washington. And the consequences are catastrophic. Change is urgently needed. Just do the freakin’ math.

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Capitalism creative destruction. And its negative side.



Robert Samuelson only examined the positive half of capitalism’s “creative destruction” in early American history (High tech, low value, Feb 16, 2015).  He then missed the positive and profound benefits of new technological advances spurred by capitalism in our modern era.

The great negative outcome in the last two centuries came in the form of increased killing capacity as new technologies were applied to weapons development yielding the capacity for mass murder well beyond any previous means.   And while new era technology will have far greater  mass murder capacity (bio, nano, cyber, robotics, even car bombs) the “ internet” provides humanity with the capacity for transforming centuries of human conflict, injustice and environmental destruction in a more livable, secure, prosperous and sustainable world.   Our capacity to communicate virtually anywhere in the world virtually instantaneous and for free, should not be undervalued.

Combating humanities greatest threat, new and re-emerging infectious diseases (email moves faster and far wider than pandemics), eradicating global ignorance and with it extremist beliefs, or sharing vital information to stop those committed to mass murder -- offers profound benefits to our species.

But the greatest benefit yet untapped is our increasing capacity for organizing an efficient global federal government to manage or prevent other threats.   One where technological advances in cell phones and cameras facilitate the protection of human rights globally-- if that is the popular will of ‘we the people’ --now easily quantifiable with global communications. 

Technology and capitalism are tools. They can be used for great good or unprecedented harm.  Their end use will be determined by the hearts of the users.  If we users fail to create a world government devoted to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness for all, there won’t be any tool that can limit the abuse and destructive capacity government, technology or capitalism.

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