Resource Awareness in the Roboeconomy

Today we know very little about the essentials of our existence. We treat them as an animal treats nature : We use what is there without wondering or worrying much. This is a luxury, to not have to worry about things. There’s actually two levels of worry possible : One is you worry if you can pay for food and comfort (which some people do), the other is that you worry whether there is food or comfort for sale when you can pay (which almost nobody does). It is time to start worrying more.

Wealth = Energy x Materials x Skills

For all the Dick Cheneys stating that nobody will screw with our “Way of life” our way of life is badly protected. A simple strike of fuel trucks or a blockade in the Mediterranean means no gasoline at the pumps. Life would grind to a halt. With the increasing droughts farmers go bankrupt. Many have in Australia but in Holland fruit producers see their apples burned in the sun and then destroyed by a hailstorm. These are the sources of what stocks our supermarket, and if they are not there our supermarket will have nothing.

There is a so called carbon budget, which is supposed to be the amount of CO2 we can emit before we reach 1,5 degrees, that limit has been shot through, because we are still stuck with the fossil credit economy. We can barely identify parameters to watch. One thing we should not watch is the price, because price signals are not an indication of scarcity. For instance if you have four countries wanting to buy grain on the global market, but they don’t have USD currency to do so, the price of grain may drop while demand is high and supply is high. On the other hand if the US pays higher prices for grain and prices go up as a result, poor countries can no longer afford to buy as much or buy at all, and the amount available will never be known.

Whould you not want an indicator of reliability of the supply of goods? With food the reliability is low. With water its also low. How about plastic? The economy is assumed to fix shortages but in reality it is not always possible, the simple test is “Can you do it all with fossil fuels?” then the economy will fix it (as long as the fossil fuels are there). If the answer to the question “Do you rely on external factors you can’t control” then the economy will usually just leave it. Especially when a natural resource is depleted. No more Dodo’s, move on! No more Tuna? (the day will come), tough shit! This could be called basic economism which has a scorched earth mentality. The fraud involved in any system to control it can be surprising, like fishermen first (falsely) reporting more catch to keep quota’s high and not alert anyone and then (falsely) report small catches to pretend to comply.

Especially for the basic needs of people a calculation could be made for the entire population based on age, weight, certainly income to ensure the basic needs are met. This is not happening at all right now because of one big distorting force in the market : Banks need for cashflow. Banks are organizations that want to create credit and handle money for others, and this is their only means to control their utility. Money can exist for a long time in circulation and this is a threat to them. They need a way to “mop up” money from circulation and there are two main ways : interest and fossil fuel cost. We explain this in other posts, but basically fossil fuel companies don’t like to spend their profit, becuase the likelyhood of it being spend on fossil fuels (again) is high. The result of this is that banks restrict our freedom to organize (by minimizing the money supply) or if they are generous, make sure the money goes into fossil fuels or gets absorbed by debts.

The desire to see cashflow (which is expressed in insiting on debt payments and financing) by banks means the proces that generates it can not stop. So when fishermen buy a large ship, the bank expects more cashflow from fish and debt payments on the investment. It does not care if the fish gets depleted in fact it explicitely bows out of this kind of concern, the typical “You figure it out” mentality we always get from the bank lakeys on the right. “We have what we need, not you go do what you need to do!”. This however means that fishermen have to be bought out to protect fish stocks (meaning the banks get what they want at the cost of the community), or they will just continue fishing whatever is alive. At the same time the boats will get bigger because banks want larger cashflow generators.

The big lie of economics is that wealth is created. This is not true if you count all the wealth, which includes oil and gas. Wealth is consumed, and natural resources, trees are consumed with help of oil and gas, mechanically at an incredible speed. If all that wealth was quantified and monitored we’d see the world running out of wealth in a frantic hurry. This however is not what banks are interested in, and as we give them control over our activity (we submit to the need for money) they call the shots! They even tell us to help them more by making “the economy” a topic, where a booming economy means banks see more cashflow and a tanking economy the opposite. Who gives a fuck if we run out of resources we need to survive (which includes a climate fit for food production).

We are facing a world that basically is not fit for humanity anymore. Life is opportunistic, it can’t exist where it is not invited. Consciousness has evolved on Earth and changed the rules a little, meaning that we as humans (and many animals) can model the world, imagine outcomes and choose one that keeps us safe. So amazingly we allowed assholes to put us in major trouble, but we have hands and feet and can build machines, and the energy we need to fight climate change is abundant, so we can work our way out of this scenario. Not by complaining about it, not by brainwashing ourselves what is wrong or what will go wrong, but by doing different things than we are today. One of them should be to start generating wealth without consuming it, so wealth is not defined as its consumption, but its existence. Another is to map the wealth we have today and map routes towards increasing it, which should of course include ways to reduce the CO2 trapping gas accumulation in our “room” the atmosphere.

We should also try to minimize cashflow for banks in ways that also maximize wealth. The most effective way to do it is to build renewable energy sources that are fully owned, so not financed. This is becoming more easy every day. Cities and countries should create zones that are not “Zero emissions” but fully RE powered. The priority should be given to those companies and industry that is not fossil dependent, that increases wealth and wellbeing. As soon as banks can be forced to comply (which they will try to avoid by pretending there are economic problems etc.) they need to be directed to increase wealth, not destroy it.