2/11/2005

Maximum-want-speed is not sustainable

i think so much of the problem traces back to this statement:

Really, ALL of our success boils down to two things: establishing a government designed to ensure maximum personal freedom, and not screwing up as badly as the other guys

maximum personal freedom versus optimal personal freedom is the confounding dilemma that encapsulates the essential crack in the right-wing philosophy. the confusion of the two establishes or maybe derives from the hierarchy of motivation where paramount is simply "what's essential is to meet my wants and needs, i'll then deal with the luxury of the needs and wants of others".

the problem with this?

the maximal-want-speed crowd live as social animals in a society that also suffers from qualification by the same "maximal vs. optimal" dichotomy.

imho, there's a 'slippage' that has played out in the longer-term picture only catching up to us now. that slippage comes from the cumulative effect of multitudinous individuals operating at maximal want-speed taking its time to impact a society operating functional, rather than at optimal and sustainable speed.

in living maximal want-speed lifestyle, it's effectively a multi-level-ponzi scheme where one person convinces ten that they should forward a dollar to the first guy and to forward the 'send-me-a-dollar' letter to ten others each of who'd be convinced do the same. participants must span the range of belief between 'real-world resources are infinite' to 'take mine and run before wider discovery that the 'buck stops somewhere' at the bottom of the pyramid. the latter need the former.

anyone familiar with ecosystem-level biology knows how this plays out in realms based on the laws of physics (aka, 'reality' :-). for a couple of centuries, americans have enjoyed what we're essentially treated as a seeming infinity of resources and no competition by other predators. but i think we're now facing what befalls any population that expands to meet the limits of resources in the physical realm.

money is obviously a large part of the mechanism allowing us to convert 'real world resources' to their trade equivelant for easy transport. our monetary system enables the translation of belief into slippage in the form of 'future value' and interest, partly. you know markets, though, 'all available information' doesn't necessarily reflect 'all available reality'.

the new american century is all about how the CONs think the maximal-want-rate slippage game can be sustained. that's why oil regions and defense were so clearly the agenda points of 'rebuilding america's defenses': the ponzi scheme has cycled through too many iterations of 'it's your lucky day' letter-forwarding, those who know that the buck must stop somewhere have already globalized. the base of the pyramid, society at function-speed, is still about 50% anesthetized by belief in infinite resources and the distraction of external predators that emerge as we push the edge of the near horizon.

slippage is the difference between current reality and the value expected to be extractable in the future. the CONs know that psychotropic drugs like 'liberty' and 'purple mountains majesty' have a great track record, 'hell, we live that everyday'! the maximum-rate guys know that they'll be outta the way when one end of that slippage line meets the other and it won't matter whether they've screwed up as badly as the other guys. they've created their own realities in new markets elsewhere!

if Jesus hasn't returned in the meantime.
You can fool some of the people all of the time and those are the ones you want to concentrate on. -- George W. Bu$h, Washington, DC March 31, 2001
btw, i think that this is the extreme expression of RW philosophy, of those willing to use it so cynically. i don't think it characterizes you, jim, or i believe you wouldn't be involved in this whole effort.

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