The Venus Project - Future By Design

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The Venus Project - Future By Design

Postby justellus » Fri Mar 06, 2009 10:34 pm

Here is an interesting site worth exploring:

The Venus Project

Future By Design

http://thevenusproject.com/

This site contains a wealth of information & is impressive in itself, for the ideas and designs proposed.

This project maintains many visions similar to various ideas being presented here in D.C. discussion groups.

Certainly mankind can benefit from such globally reaching ideas.

The ideas may presented in this link seem utopian, and are based on the assumption that humans can work for the advantage of all under an ideal model of society and futuristic design. This obviously is not the case in the world we live in.

But if the world is slowly propelled towards re-examining it's values, it could slowly move closer to a egalitarian society.

Certainly the rise of such a society could benefit from feminine leadership as well. These would tend to be less oriented towards violent war, and resolution by more peaceful means.

And, there are many criticisms of such egalitarian ideas, some positive and some negative:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Egalitarianism

Criticism

A society that meets the meritocratic goal of equal opportunity might still be a harsh environment for those who lack the physical or mental capabilities to compete. It has been argued that policies that go beyond the meritocratic ideals are ineffective. [6]

Various other anti-egalitarian views have been brought forward, among others in the discussion on the distribution of income. To the contrary, John Rawls has argued that the welfare of a society depends on the welfare of the worst-off individual because society is better off if one improves the welfare of others.[7]

Moreover, research shows that lower inequality (i.e. high egalitarianism) is correlated with better environmental maintenance and a higher quality of life [8]. Minnesota, the most egalitarian state, ranked seventh in the country in the strength of its environmental policies, eleventh in environmental quality, and had the fourth lowest premature death rate. By contrast, Mississippi, the most inegalitarian state, ranked 46th in environmental policy, 42nd in environmental quality, and 49th in its premature death rate[9].


Basically, Asset-based egalitarianism is synonomous with these ideas:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Asset-based_egalitarianism

Asset-based egalitarianism is a form of egalitarianism which theorises that equality is possible by a redistribution of resources, usually in the form of a capital grant provided at the age of majority. Names for the implementation of this theory in policy include universal basic capital, basic capital and stakeholding, and all are generally synonymous within the equal opportunity egalitarian framework.[1]


Introducing this model to a south pole scientific laboratory could be extremely beneficial as well, and such a model could be tested in this context, as suggested in this link:

http://www.designcommunity.com/forums/topic-16532.html

and here:

http://www.designcommunity.com/forums/t ... 46-15.html

And with similar ideas and scientific ramifications presented here:

http://www.designcommunity.com/forums/topic-19088.html

and in these links as well:

http://www.designcommunity.com/forums/t ... c-690.html

and recently added here & in prior pages -->>

http://www.designcommunity.com/forums/t ... c-765.html

(Which have generated much controversy, by the way)

The Venus Project versus Asset-based egalitarianism

This related theory of Asset-based egalitarianism has it's draw-backs as well:

Criticism of asset-based egalitarianism

Asset-based egalitarian policies, such as the Ackerman and Alstott proposals, are often criticised as not being egalitarian. Due to different people having different abilities and talents to utilise financial wealth, there is always a risk that those without formal financial education would alienate their own freedom by dissipating their capital or 'stakeblowing.' Stuart White argued that unless education corrected for this, there would be an inegalitarian outcome, as people fundamentally have different asset-management capacities.[5]


Then, there are the related ideas of "Basic Income" -->>

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Basic_income

Yet these still are rooted in the outdated monetary system that The Venus Project holds to be the source of our problems.

Yet, again, this model to some degree is being implemented in Alaska -->>

Examples of implementation

The U.S. State of Alaska has a system which provides each citizen with a share of the state's oil revenues[3], although this amount is not necessarily enough to live on. The U.S. also has an Earned income tax credit for low-income taxpayers. In 2006 a bill written by members of the advocacy organization USBIG to transform the credit into a partial basic income was introduced in the US congress but did not pass.[4]

The city of Dauphin, Manitoba, Canada took part in an experimental basic income program ("Mincome") between 1974 and 1979.[5]

In 2008, a pilot project with a basic income grant was started in the Namibian village of Otjivero by the Namibian Basic Income Grant Coalition.[6] After six months the project has been found to significantly reduce child malnutrition and increase school attendance. It was also found to increase the community's income significantly above the actual amount from the grants as it allowed citizens to partake in more productive economic activities.


And there is the Basic Income Earth Network, as described and referred to, which is analogous to the Citizen's dividend model.

The State of Alaska dispenses a form of citizen's dividend in its Permanent Fund Dividend, which holds investments initially seeded by the state's revenue from mineral resources, particularly petroleum. In 2005, every eligible Alaskan resident (including their children) received a check for $845.76. Over the 24-year history of the fund, it has paid out a total of $24,775.45 to every resident.


The Alaskan Permanent Fund Dividend Division can be found here:

http://www.pfd.state.ak.us/

And we have the U.S. Basic Income Guarantee Network as well:

http://www.usbig.net/index.html

One can freely become a member of this group and share in the ideas.

And yet again, the antiquated taxing system is maintained in such a system.

And it seems all these semi-utopian models still have their inherent flaws such as:

1. Who is to determine what material objects should be distributed when to individuals? Would not human greed consume all the resources before others get to them?

2. Who is to guarantee that if such a system is in place, that others would respect neighbor's rights and work for the betterment of society? They may simply refuse to work and live off the cost and expense of others.

3. What is to prevent people from hoarding and stock-pilling goods in the face of natural disasters and the like.

4. If such as model has never been succesfully implemented, but instead has lead to skewed systems of communism, this demonstrates such utopian ideas in practice, in the hands of greedy men, without failure, lead to manipulation of public interest on the part of the few elite in power.

5. Such models suggest the Apocolyptic views of a world government controlling and spying on all, and using the machines to monitor and control it's people, and establish their global reign.

6. The costs involved in such quasi-utopian ideas are never calculated exactly. Who would fund all the mega-projects if there is no one single owner?

7. This suggests a global world controling body that many abhor, that could also lead the world to cataclysmic failure by granting power to a few who run the machines, as seen in many movies.

8. Robots and machines controlling society, the economy, supply and demand? Who is not to guarantee that such machines will not be used for evil intent or manipulated to favor interests of a small rulling elite group that controls the show?

9. What will guarantee the stability, order, growth of such systems? If there is no personal motivation for gain, can humanity indeed produce wealth, or will it become a subsistence society?

And there are many other draw-backs as well. Sometimes attempts to "take on the world" and solve all global problems can also end-up being very visionary yet difficult to implement. But certainly change needs to begin at some point.

Question:

What do you think, can such a utopian society ever be achieved?

Is not capitalism the best system, or has it now proven also to be a failure?

What are you views, as a designer, on this subject matter?

And as a side anecdote, it is interesting to see the latest luxury submarines that can "fly" under-water:

http://edition.cnn.com/2009/TECH/03/06/ ... pstoryview

And further alternatives to the central city for all ideas:

Shimizu Mega-City Pyramid — The answer to Tokyo’s lack of space?

http://www.perfectcity.net/2009/01/05/s ... -of-space/

With another photo of the Timelinks visions here:

http://www.matternetwork.com/2008/8/new ... tizens.cfm

And this topic is interesting as well:

Just Imagine....what will life be like in 2020?

http://www.cnn.com/SPECIALS/2008/just.imagine/cities/

A Few Topics Covered in this CNN link:

The Future of Cities: greening the ghetto

The Buoyant Market: Are floating homes the answer?

Can we grow food in space?

Energy- Solar solution, could the whole world go solar?

Beam me up: Are we close to teleportation?

and many other interesting topics discussed on this page above.

And a few future city animations also interesting:

The Future in 2050 -->>

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0jU9KzsU ... re=related

This is a great video as well, and shows these pyramid projects and the two-mile high "Ultima Tower" idea as well, among others. Any you recognize here? Buildings, trains, cars, buses of the future...,work stations, biometrics, robotics, interactive digital equipment, and much more...

and another..

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wsuari9zdjo
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Postby mortimer33 » Thu Apr 16, 2009 2:45 pm

From the Venus Project Site "The Venus Project offers a comprehensive plan for social reclamation in which human beings, technology, and nature will be able to coexist in a long-term, sustainable state of dynamic equilibrium."

I can see a lot of people being attracted to this in the current climate. Even though the whole idea sounds appealing and the designs look great for me, this type of idea always seems a little off.. :shock:
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Postby justellus » Sat Apr 18, 2009 7:46 pm

As demonstrated in the other thread here:

http://www.designcommunity.com/forums/t ... 45-15.html

Modern society is not ready for such "alien" ideas and thus, is not able to assimilate the possibility of a society where all are free to pursue individual dreams free of being tied down by the need for material dominance. This way of thinking is so ingrained in our world thought and views that it may be many years before civilization awakens and realizes it has all it needs to meet the needs of it's inhabitants, when the goods necessary for basic survival are made available to all, and when money no longer exists as we know it. An asset based economy, where the pursuit and hoarding of individual wealth is no longer a goal, frees the soul and mind for a greater achievement. Modern society has been conditioned to such an extent, that it cannot conceive of such a society, and frequently equates it with communism. But it need not be, and it can be far from this. The most advanced civilizations of all need such a model in order to achieve a higher level of development. Until now, the world has not seen this. Frequently, when individuals find such ideas strange, or difficult to fathom, or a "little off", it is that they cannot quite pin-point down the reason why.

Modern man, with his mind thus conditioned, is maintained under this system of a few maintaining power over the masses. These in turn, remain eternally indebted to the few who hold the power, the money. If we are to advance as a race, as a world, we need to begin to free ourselves from these systems of today and envision a brighter future, where technology, goods, services and freedom to live with free access to the resources of man and the earth become available to all. The earth thus will be able to produce in abundance. Many problems of today will receed into the past, such as pollution. This because society will then soon have a diminished need for running back and forth from one place to another.

Free to pursue greater dreams and advancements, man will thus embark in new directions brought about by this freedom from material thinking - a pathway where no longer the basic need for survival consumes man's energy and time. In turn, now all can freely pursue their individual dreams with a great degree of free time on their hands. This has the potential to lead to an escalation of development and human knowledge, as man is liberated to "evolve" his mind and delve into greater areas of intelligent development. The idea is revolutionary and it seems society today remains to fathom the power of such a system to bring about fantastic changes, once it is fully understood and embraced by all.
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Postby justellus » Thu Nov 26, 2009 11:11 pm

Venus project and Z eitgeists, both linked together.

This video demonstrates some interesting points regarding these groups:

http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=vPXc1QcmY ... re=related

The Venus project had a good start until they mixed in with this other group.

The ideas may seem great, but their application in the current world we live in not yet practical, as the world is not ready to accept them fully. Yet even if they could, once this mixing of ideas has occurred, the spirit and intent of the original project has gone spinning off in another direction....

Now, here is another topic worth considering:

So Much to Learn, So Little We Know:

http://fireside.DesignCommunity.com/topic-24490.html
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