There is this bug in human DNA; we prefer to buy cheap junk 3 times, over buying quality 1 time. Where the 3 times are being more expensive than the 1 time quality. Where the quality brings: more joy, lasting longer, having a second hand valuea, and less a cost for the environment.
Imagine there is only 1 island where people live. And on this island is only 1 shop where they make and sell chairs and tables. The quality is bad and the prices are high. People buy chairs and tables here, because there is no other option. But then an entrepreneur stands up and starts making good quality chairs and tables for a fair price. Result: people now buy the better products for less money in the new shop, And the first shop goes out of business. Hurrah! This is a better alternative applied in the real world.
Yeah.. so next an other entrepreneur stands up to make cheaper chairs and tables, of less quality (but on the surface it looks like fine). Now 90% of the people start buying the cheaper goods, and thus stop buying the quality goods with the fair price. Except for 10% of the people who see the values of quality. Thing is, with only 10% of the people coming, the quality shop can not be efficient and survive. It therefore has to rise the price of their quality products times 3, also because now 50% of the 10% can now not afford the quality products any more. The no-quality shop noticed the current ratio and saw the opportunity to raise their prices 50%.
End result: the people have this choice: to buy actually not cheap low quality chairs and tables, OR to buy unnecessary expensive chairs and tables that are of good quality.
I think this is the dumb situation people always get in because of our nature to prefer cheap over quality, even when in the end the quality is: cheaper, nicer, more second-hand value, and better for the environment.
Fear of the unknown. When you leave everything the same, you know what you will get. Even when you know that what you will get is pretty bad, many people will still prefer this over an unknown change, even when the change has a positive goal. I have heard that people on average experience a loss twice as intense as a win. But some people like to win so much that they kind of ignore any loss, thus having those people in the pool means there are also people who experience a loss many times stronger than a win. It is normal for a human being to fear the unknown, nothing is going to change that.
How to get the fear-people to want a change for the good? I guess if the promised good feels 4x stronger than not changing the current situation. Or use the power of fear to convince people to move. "Not changing will lead to great losses" is it fair to use the power of fear? I guess not but it works and most all leaders use this trick.
Another typical human property: being lazy. Some things we like to do and most things we don't like to do. The things we don't like to do we don't do, unless we are forced to by our own logic. For example: I don't like to put out the garbage, but if I don't, it will stink terrible tomorrow morning and as it is my turn today, others will get angry at me tomorrow. I don't like stink in the morning nor angry friends, so I will do it now.
It is actually smart to be lazy, because everybody has a limited amount of power. First do what you like to do, Second do what you have to do, and that is it. Lazy is energy efficient really. Lazy becomes negative when one stops doing the musts and even the wants.
How can we get the energy efficient people to do the work that we want to get done? Give something in return that is a good deal, usually money, pleasant work space, and a good mission can also be a motivator.
"Yea nice but that will never work because of reasons: A, B, C. No I'm not negative I am a realist. This can go wrong, that can go wrong, most will probably fail. Why put energy and time in something new and unknown, while you know it can fail? Will I join now? For sure-not. Maybe I consider it when it is proven to work well."
Always critical, no creative power, just creating resistance for others and themselves. Does a naysayer think that a creative person doesn't know that things can go wrong? I think what makes a creater has his/her main focus is on getting to a positive goal. Of course does a creater know about the bears on the road and that most new things fail, but let's not focus on that too much.
One very important question to always ask when starting a new endeavor is: is my goal a possibility and within reach, within the current state of this universe? Because if not, then your goal is really not possible. Do not step in the pile of "if you want, everything is possible" or similar "if you believe in your self, you can do anything" and "ask the universe what you want and it will bring it to you". And no; reality is not a product of your consciousness.
When a large change with good intentions is forced upon a large group of people, there will be people who have a loss, and some who gain from what is happening. A redistribution of an area. For example building a dam for renewable energy. Houses, businesses, towns, special places, and all the nature there will disappear under water, destroyed. You can and should support all these victims of this change with money and a new place to live, and give an other area back to nature. But how ever good the compensation: the brake-up is painful to manny. Some really old people may not survive such a change.
When wanting to do things in a new way, you will probably run into a wall of government rules that make it impossible to do your thing. Changing the rules can not be done easily, but it can be done. But note that the whole society was functioning with this set of rules, doesn't matter if these rules are good or bad, it is a kind of balance. When changing 1 rule, society will be a little bit uncomfortable but then adjust and come into a new balance. When changing a large amount of rules at once, there will be like a shockwave going through society, causing a lot of troubles, unintended consequences, taking quite some time for all to settle.
This is similar to the resistance of government rules. But where government rules can in theory be adjusted, added or removed to better fit the current situation, the rules of traditions and religion are usually not to be questioned or changed. Then again, when the will to change is there, interpretations of traditions and religions can change -a bit.
There is a lot of resistance against change, even to change that is designed to bring good to most people. And it is true: even a change designed for good will bring: uncertainty, investment costs, changes to the current way of living, in the end for many mainly a win but for some just mainly a loss. I wish all people would like a change for good as much as I do, but the fact is that most people don't.
To me, trying to improve the world feels like dealing with little children: "don't worry, you will like it, I will hold your hand we'll go there together, your friends will be there too, 1 2 there we go". And it also feels like "Why do I have to think of solutions for us all, and next have to find ways to force people to accept these solutions?". It is easier for me to do nothing, just like most everybody else. I am tired already.
Maybe my ideas are terrible in the end, good intentions but just not fit for reality. I would love to be a good dictator, so I can just force my will onto all. But some people in great power have done so in the past, with horrible results, like millions of people dead because of some stupid policies. So, as a good dictator, in my principles guide should be added "never assume that you know the truth. Your'best' decision could be the worst really".
Anyhow, I will focus on my design for a better future, and hope that people like it enough to make it or parts of it real.
Would you like to work for a company that has an important a positive mission, or do you prefer to work for a company that adds nothing good to this world, or wors? Most people will prefer to work for a company with a good mission.
People need money to pay the bills to start with, and would like to have more and more as it brings freedom and the power. But at some point having much more money than other people becomes a problem, because people want to have your money one way or another, forcing you to live in a golden cage. Daniel Kahneman and Angus Deaton did research in 2010 that showed that a yearly income up to $75,000 (of course depending on where one lives) makes people happy/comfortable, because if makes most things possible that people want. Above that, more money does not really make happy anymore.
Anyhow, money is a great tool to get people to work for you. Also can money be used as compensation for somebody's loss caused by the introduction of a better alternative.
Somebody's loss caused by the introduction of a better alternative can not always be covered with money. If one loses something that cannot be bought again with money, then we should search for an other kind of compensation. Sometimes it is about honor, recognition.
When 3 other countries have introduced a better alternative, and it works really well, you may be like "Why the hopla don't we have that? We still do it the old way and it sucks relative to those countries where they introduced the better alternative". This is the best motivation: being jealous!
But what if there are no 3 example countries, not even 1.. One could make a movie showing a world with the better alternative in it. But to be honest; that is propaganda. That the designers believe it will work well, is no guarantee that it will really work well. Also having proof that it works in country 1, 2 and 3 does not guarantee that it will also work well in country nr 4. Buy hey; life will always be uncertain, if it works in 3 countries, then just try it.
Text. fear want
When bringing a compleet set (all major topics) of better alternatives together, you'll get a design for a better future. I would like to invite anyone and any group of people to share their design for a better future with everybody. But the best design for a better future is of course: my design. Follow me, and I will guide you towards paradise. No no; that was a joke. If any one or any group claims that their design is superior, take that as a big red flag. It is of course good if you believe in your design, but keeping power hungry creeps out of control I believe is one of the major goals.
So how should we go about discovering the best combination of the best of the better alternatives?
Yes, let us first think about what will probably happen if we don't take the effort to move and accelerate towards the next level? Well; we will stay at our current level. A level however is dynamic not static. If I compare my county to my county 50 years ago, a lot has changed, but never in these 50 years has a complete plan for a better future been developed and executed. The change has come from many incremental steps. You could say that my county has been on the same track, the same path, all that time. Staying on track and slowly adapting isn't that bad, but in order to get to the next level, we have to stop this train and get on a new track. Starting with a clean slate is necessary in many cases to get the change that we want. Do we want this change anyways? In this case yes because the definition of "the next level" = "the changes that most of us want, but can't get to while continuing as is".
To all who think "I don't want change, I like it the way it is", know that: war, poverty, corruption, pollution, and the slowly dying of species on our planet, are all properties of our current level. Do I think that the next level will be paradise, free of troubles? No of course not, but it will be significantly better. And again; the track we are on now is dynamic, it can get slightly better or go deep downhill from here. I personally think we (all people on Earth) are extremely vulnerable on our current track, and I don't get many positive vibes from looking ahead on this track. I want to feel more safe and get more positive vibes from looking into the future.
Every little improvement is one, a better alternative says nothing about its size and small improvements can have huge results. Look into for example how the blue LED has changed the world for the better. The task of developing the blue LED was not an easy job, but the idea was like a Better Detail: we can make green and red LED light, but no blue. IF we can make blue, we can mix neutral RGB light. These can replace incandescent lamps while using less energy. For every 6 polluting coal plans that now run for keeping the lights on, you can then close 5 of them, because LED light uses only 1/6 of the energy.
A Better Alternative is about more than a Better Detail but not about everything. It is limited to one topic, about what goals we what to reach there, how that could be done and what resistance can be expected. Example of topics: energy, transport, architecture, school, art, the military, financial businesses, food production, airconditioning, cities, government, trust, freedom & rules, general machine intelligence, and the list goes on.
A design for a Better Future is made from a large set of Better Alternatives; all major topics should be included. So much to think and write about, a huge challenge to finish. And what makes a Design for a Better Future more than the sum of it's Better Alternative parts, is that all these parts should connect, just like in reality, where everything is more or less directly or indirectly connected to each other. No individual group or computer is powerful enough to predict how a design for a Better Future is going to run in reality, especially on the long term. We can only make a calculated guess. Anyone that thinks he/she knows exactly what the long term results of applying a design for a Better Future are, is mistaken. This stuff is complex.
Step 1: Invite every individual and group on earth to think about all kinds of better alternatives, ways to improve the quality of life on Earth, and to share these ideas online with everybody else. Anonymous if necessary as not everybody has the freedom to express their ideas.
Step 2: Collect all these ideas and discover how to manage this data. These ideas should not be collected on forms with boxes. Our minds should be free to write good ideas, not limited by bureaucratic trolls. All media that we can share online is welcome: text, drawings, photos, movies.
But who is going to collect all these ideas? By now the "better alternatives" organization should consists of quite some people and have enough budget.
Step 3: Analyze the ideas.
All ideas have many properties, some unique, most shared. We are not judging yet, just organizing analyzing and sharing all the input. First separation though will be into possible useful and clearly useless contributions. This IS a judgment all right but let met give some examples of clearly useless:
"cut down and burn all the worlds trees, to get free energy"
"comedians should rule the world, for they are funny"
"travel to the future, ask what were the best ideas"
We are looking for ideas that:
- are well thought through
- serious proposals that you honestly believe in
- possible within this reality
Step 4: Select the best ideas.
We'll have to think hard about what the best ideas are. But who are "we"? Who has the right to judge? We have to select the best ideas to continue, but this is not a game with one winner, it is more about collecting the most interesting ingredients from a large spectrum of possible options. Many ideas will be similar to ideas that have been tried in the past, therefore we should look at the past for advice. Good ideas look like good ideas, but reality rules and will most always come up with unintended consequences. Even if we think about all options for a million years, there is just one way to find out..
Step 5: Try many ideas for real, in small settings.
Size small: within a theater play or small town. Do and learn. Adjust where necessary. Analyze and share the results. Although small trails can show a lot, larger experiments over a longer period of time will be different.
Step 6: Try some ideas for real, in larger settings.
Size medium: a large city or a state. Choose from the best results from the smaller experiments, maybe combine what has been learned in different experiments, and apply new experiments in a lower number of larger settings. And again; do and learn. Adjust where necessary. Analyze and share the results.
Step 7: Make a choice for 1 big experiment, apply it on a very large scale.
Size large: within one country or a large state. Large scale experiments can be very different from small and medium scale. And again; do and learn. Adjust where necessary. Analyze and share the results.
Step 8: If successful, invite other states and countries to copy!
If other states or countries become jealous of how a large experiment turned out, that would be perfect! Actually, if nobody else wants to copy the experiment, the experiment has kind of failed or at least should be asked why there is no interest. If an experiment was successful in one country however, that does not guarantee that it will work in an other country! But again; there is one way to find out, you know how.
Do you want to join the search for the better alternatives?
Develop and share your ideas!