9/16/2008 10:18 A.M. PDT
The economy of the universe is based on discoverable facts and principles. Sunlight is beamed aboard planet earth continuously. It is a direct energy source, supports the growth of plants, powers the wind and rain, lights our way, etc. It is measurable. It is relatively consistent. Don’t know about you, but I’ve never heard a report that the sun coming into view in the morning was dependent on how confident humans were that day.
True, fundamental, cosmic, natural economics is about life support, purely, simply. Humans have chanced upon, and intentionally sought out ways to accelerate nature’s processes. For example, we found out that clearing a field and planting only one type of plant will produce a much higher yield than just finding a random patch of the desired plant; using fertilizer again upped the yield; we developed tools to still further up the yield; etc. All of this is measurable and relatively predictable. Although weather patterns change continuously, it is a fact that as a planet we have been producing enough food to feed everyone, and have been doing it for decades, at least.
Buckminster Fuller identified 7 facets of life support: food; shelter; health care; education; communication; transportation and recreation. Goods and services are produced in these 7 areas by combining materials, time, labor, energy and know-how in measurable amounts. The recipe for building and flying airplanes has no entry titled: confidence. “We have no confidence that the laws of physics are working today, therefore all flights are cancelled” is a laughable idea.
The one true economic system has no requirement for money, exchange rates, credit scores, stocks, deeds, etc., etc. This is all fascinating, stimulating stuff that grabs and holds our attention. They are also un-natural, wasteful impediments to life support.
It is only after we have misunderstood the essential character of economics and have built up complex monetary systems and theories, that are ever changing, that we could be in a position where our life support delivery system could be in so much turmoil in such a short period of time. It’s time to withdraw confidence in all monetary systems, and place confidence where it belongs: in the basic, super-abundant economy of nature, which includes and is augmented by human know-how.