How Large is your Penis?

Saturday, July 3, 2010

The Venus Project

You can find out more about the Venus Project here. Basically, what the Venus project is a goal to build an automatic society, where there is no war, there is no excessive work, people are freed to their own hobbies, products and services are available to everyone, no crime, and no poor people. The Venus project has been having a lot of support from the world, but I am going to condemn the Venus project. All what the Venus project is, is a dream, a fantasy world. That is part of the reason why lots of people like it so much. It is nothing but a Utopian fantasy. I am going to show the problems with this project.

On the Wikipedia page, Fresco, the founder of this project, says that:

According to Fresco, poverty, crime, corruption and war are the result of scarcity created by the present world's profit-based economic system. He theorizes that the profit motive also stifles the progress of socially beneficial technology. Fresco claims that the progression of technology, if it were carried on independently of its profitability, would make more resources available to more people by producing an abundance of products and materials. This new-found abundance of resources would reduce the human tendency toward individualism, corruption, and greed, and instead rely on people helping each other. Fresco believes it is now possible to achieve a society in which people would live "longer, healthier, and more meaningful lives." Fresco believes the monetary system and the processes associated with it, such as labour and competition, damages society and holds people back from their true potentials. He states his ideas would maximally benefit the greatest number of people. He claims some of his ideas stem from his formative years during the Great Depression. Fresco believes the current global economic situation, being similar to —though not as severe as— the Great Depression, will lead people away from free-market economics and capitalism and make them lose confidence in the monetary establishment. Fundamental to the project is the elimination of the current money-based economy in favor of a resource-based economy.

Let us examine the stupid ideas from this one paragraph one by one.

1)According to Fresco, poverty, crime, corruption and war are the result of scarcity created by the present world's profit-based economic system. The first thing I want to concentrate on is being poor. Poorness is not created by anything. Poorness is the natural condition of man. The natural condition of man is misery and suffering. This is the way people lived for 99% of our human existence. The only reason why we have been able to escape this terrible state is by trade and the division of labor. How can one say that poor people are created? Poor people is the way things are. We should rather ask why are there rich people, or people with some reasonable standard of living? That is the proper way to phrase the question. Now let me talk about corruption, crime and war. Crime is often caused by people's self-interest, not all the time but often enough. Some criminal wants more money so he figures that he can rob another person for his money. The criminal's self-interest is more money and he robs that money from other people. The reason why people for the most part act good is partially due to our system of values or the fear of dealing with the consequences. Even though we may have a self-interest to rob we hold ourselves back, sometimes our self-interest for theft can really be strong and we ignore fear or values and act on our self-interest motives. The same with war. Crime is self-interest for individuals, war is self-interest for states. Wars happens become one state wants more power or more wealth, some wars are acts of self-defense, but most are not. So I agree that self-interest is responsible for crime and war, but it is ridiculous to say that a profit-based economy is responsible for crime and war. Let me ask this question. There is not self-interest in a Marxist economy? You really think people never want to earn money in a Marxist country? Of course they do. It is human nature to act in self-interest. It does not matter what kind of economy it is, self-interest will always be present. So this criticism of profit-based economics (I guess he wants to say "capitalism") by Fresco is a pathetic criticism.

2)He theorizes that the profit motive also stifles the progress of socially beneficial technology. How? This is just stupid. It is the profit motive (oh no, "profit", such a dirty word!) that has created computers, TV's, and basically all of the technology that we have. This does not stifle anything, this is progress. If you ask me to name a piece of technology developed for making a profit I can think of ten in five seconds. But if I was to ask you to think of a piece of technology developed for non-profit reasons, I doubt you would be able to think of even one. This point by Fresco is rationally and empirically stupid.

3)This new-found abundance of resources would reduce the human tendency toward individualism, corruption, and greed, and instead rely on people helping each other. I believe that the human species will one day live through a new economic revolution. Machines will replace most of the main labor that people have to do. This way people would have time to enjoy life and pursue their hobbies. This would be the period of our time when our standard of living is astronomically high, perhaps there will be no poor people anymore because products and services are no longer based on earning profits for they are performed by machines. I have no objection to this kind of society, obviously, I hope we can reach it one day. The way we reach this stage is not by some dumb Utopian fantasies which do not even make economic sense, but by a profit-driven competitive markets which will produce these machines that will work for us.

4)Fresco believes the monetary system and the processes associated with it, such as labour and competition, damages society and holds people back from their true potentials. Wow, this is complete stupidity. I wrote about why a monetary system is good and necessary back here. Being against money is to fundamentally be opposed to trade, Fresco obviously does not realize this. Besides, why are labor and competition associated with a monetary system? Regardless if it is a monetary system or not labor will always be associated with it, work needs to be done. But the part that really surprises me is when he says "damages society". How does Fresco conclude that competition damages society? Competition is the reason why technology is improving. Why everything gets cheaper and why quality is going up. How can he possible be against competition for this reason then? I do agree with him that labor holds people back from their true potentials. A person who has to work has little time to philosophize or to pursue his hobbies. It is sad that this sacrifice must take place. It certainly would be better if we did not have to sacrifice our hobbies for our labor, but the world is not this way yet, and we have to. Work needs to be done.

5)He states his ideas would maximally benefit the greatest number of people. I do not care what he states, I care for his justification. Anyone can state anything they want. Every person will state that his ideas are superior, obviously, otherwise they would not form their ideas in the first place. Stating your own position is useless unless it is defended. And thus far, Fresco makes no economic sense at all.

6)Will lead people away from free-market economics and capitalism and make them lose confidence in the monetary establishment. I am surprised at how many people think that the world operates under free-market economics. Hardly anywhere in the world is free market capitalism practiced as an economic system (I believe this has to do with people's ignorance of the subject matter). But what I can say is that capitalism cannot be replaced. Capitalism is derived from the concept of trade between two people. Money is derived from trade itself. To abolish capitalism or money will mean that we need to move towards a system in where no trade ever takes place. That sounds like a terrible system ... but hey, at least no worker gets exploited!

So this is what I think of this dumb Utopian fantasy filled with economic fallacies after another. Fresco might be an engineer but he is an economic retard. To plan for such a society, that he wants to achieve, probably requires some understanding of economics. And once someone knows a little bit about economics, one learns that, surprisingly, such societies cannot be planned, and they cannot have a central planner, they will have to arise naturally and spontaneously. So the goal of removing labor from people will not be achieved by central planners but by the natural evolution of humans themselves.

14 comments:

  1. Reading this I feel sorry for you :( You appear to lack factual information that supports the ideas you are against. So what is your response? Denounce it as impossible.

    The Wright Brothers were told man would never fly... but they didn't listen. The fact is, we can do anything we focus on... something to remember when you remind yourself that life is built on misery.

    If you cannot imagine a better world, one based in cooperation, then believe truly you are lost.

    Best of luck.

    ReplyDelete
  2. "Reading this I feel sorry for you :( You appear to lack factual information that supports the ideas you are against. So what is your response? Denounce it as impossible. ":

    Here is the difference between me and you. I say the Venus project is impossible and stupid. I explain why it is stupid by showing it is build around wrong economics. Then I proceed to show exactly why it is stupid. You do not like what I say because I ruined your little Utopian fantasy. So what do you do, you tell me how I lack factual infromation. But you never explain where I am mistaken. Explain to me why my objection against the Venus project is wrong.

    "The Wright Brothers were told man would never fly... but they didn't listen.":

    The Wright Brothers had their models based on actual science, not some Utopian fantasies which do not even make any half-sense.

    "The fact is, we can do anything we focus on... ":

    No we cannot do anything we focus on, what an insult against the intellect. This is an idea that is preached in schools to students to make them motivated. Can we win chess in one move? No. If we really really really focus on the goal of winning chess in one move can we develop such a method? If a person has average intelligence he will never, no matter how much he focuses, will be a theoretical physicist or a mathematician. Some things are just impossible. But for some people the idea that impossibilities exist bothers them, it ruins their Utopian fantasies, so they delude themselves that anything is possible with enough work.

    "something to remember when you remind yourself that life is built on misery.":

    I was making a descriptive statement, not a prescriptive one. I said that the human condition is based on suffering and misery and has been for 99% of our existence. I am not saying that this is how things ought to be, I was saying that this is how it really is.

    "If you cannot imagine a better world, one based in cooperation, then believe truly you are lost.":

    I call this the "anus pull". That is when you lube up your hand, reach in your anus, and pull some accusation about me that cannot be deduced from what I said. Where did I say the world cannot be a better place? I even made it explicit that the world will be better one day. Just because I condemn the Venus project and its followers for their economic stupidity does not mean I do not support progress. Progress will come, but it cannot be engineered in the way of the Venus project.

    ReplyDelete
  3. You are nothing more than a defender of this sick society we live in. MLK had a dream, the Wright Brothers had a dream. The Venus Project is possible due to the fact that we have the current technologies available for everyone to live in abundance without the use of money or barter. Technologies like Solar, Wind, Tidal, Wave, Geothermal, Hydroponics, Aeroponics, Desalinization plants, Robotics, Super Computers is not a fantasy. A Venus Project society wants to utilize all advance technologies to give everyone a better life. There are people living off the grid right now. They have no light bills, no mortgage, no water bills. They are using electric cars and using renewable energy to power their homes. This is the Venus Project on a small scale. If everyone comes together for the good of man then we can accomplish this on a bigger scale. By reading your little article, we have ways to go on educating people of this direction. You can continue to be sympathetic to your oppressors or join the movement. www.thevenusproject.com and www.thezeitgeistmovement.com

    ReplyDelete
  4. 2nd rant. I notice you mention economics a couple of times. The Venus Project isn't based on economics, it's based on resources. If you would of took time to study the material you read on TVP you would know this. So your whole arguement of this direction is flawed. TVP wants to basically get rid of the middle man which is the monetary system which is the instigator for war, crime, corruption, poverty, and hunger.

    ReplyDelete
  5. "You are nothing more than a defender of this sick society we live in.":

    I have over a hundred written ideas on this blogs that have absolutely nothing to do with the world that we live in. How about your read them and find out just how radically different I am from most people.

    What I am a defender, is a defender of a sound economic system, not a utopian fantasy of how money can be abolished.

    "MLK had a dream, the Wright Brothers had a dream.":

    I had a dream to have a big giant penis. Sadly, this never happened. Because unattainable dreams cannot be achieved. The Venus Project is a dream based on bad economic concepts, and that is why it is unattainable.

    "By reading your little article, we have ways to go on educating people of this direction.":

    How about your study some basic economics first?

    "The Venus Project isn't based on economics, it's based on resources.":

    The belief that society can exist without any economics is foolish. Which is again why the Venus project is a utopian fantasy.

    "TVP wants to basically get rid of the middle man which is the monetary system which is the instigator for war, crime, corruption, poverty, and hunger.":

    You did not understand any of my arguments. First, you cannot get rid of money, money is not evil, money is important, and I explained exactly what money is here (http://skepticbutjewish.blogspot.com/2010/07/what-is-money.html). Second, how is money related to all of the unfavorable things you mentioned? I addressed all of those issues above. You did not refute them. You just keep on preaching the same Venus non-sense.

    ReplyDelete
  6. The same people who laughted at MLK and the Wright Brothers dreams are the same one's with egg on there face now. You my friend never refuted that it's possible to live off the grid. This is basically what The Venus Project is about, but on a larger scale like I stated before. You never refuted the technologies that are availble I've mentioned that can make this possible. Through out history of the world there has always been change. You are living in a fantasy world of denial. You my friend is just another person with an opinion. What I just stated is facts.

    ReplyDelete
  7. "You my friend never refuted that it's possible to live off the grid. This is basically what The Venus Project is about, but on a larger scale like I stated before. You never refuted the technologies that are availble I've mentioned that can make this possible.":

    I do not need to refute anything. You are making a positive declaration why it is possible. So you need to justify why it is so. You cannot tell me you have a magical penguin living up your anus and then demand me to refute why there is no such penguin.

    Besides, I have refuted the idea of abolishing money. Did you even read what I wrote? Money exists because trade exists. Abolishing money can only be achieved by aboloshing trade itself. Surly you are not against that. Anyone who actually believes in the possibility of abolishing money is an economic fool that does not understand why money is necessary.

    "Through out history of the world there has always been change. You are living in a fantasy world of denial. You my friend is just another person with an opinion. What I just stated is facts."

    Let us examine all the non-sense you said in that passage.

    Yes through out history there has always been changed. But do you know that also through out history there were people who promised changed and promised utopias? Thousands and thousands of people who preached utopias and great changes. None of it ever happened.

    You tell me I am living in a world of denial. Denial of what? What am I denying? Remember I am not the one who believes in the child-like economics of having no money.

    But the dumbest thing you say is the ending, " another person with an opinion. What I just stated is facts". What an assault against the intellect. I hear it all the time, "it is just your opinion, it is just your opinon.." It makes me want to vomit at this point. Here is the truth about opinions. Not all opinions are equal. Some opinions are respectable and others are not. And besides, it is your opinion that what I said is my opinion. See how dumb that is? I can play the same anti-intellectual game. How about you discuss what is actually relevent to the discussion than deciding what I say is an opinion or not.

    ReplyDelete
  8. A lot of talk of penis & anus on your blog. Stay focus buddy. I don't know what you are into, but anyway just because you say it don't make it so. Your understanding of economics is very questionable because you don't understand the root cause of the problems. Unemployment in this country, will continue to rise because corporations have to stay ahead of the competition. Outsourcing and technological unemployment (automation) will continue because it's profitable.

    What will happen eventually is our free market system will become socialist or even worse facist. No jobs, No consumers, no consumption, no consumption the people from the top will fall also. Remember the 3rd world countries can't afford our products with the slave wages they are getting paid.

    Back to living off the grid which you still never refuted. You only tried to insult me, making yourself look like a fool. Renewable energies are self sustaining and efficient. This is the enemy of the capitalism because it can eventually cut into the profits of big oil, big business.

    Remember Free market strives on scarcity not abundance which renewables produce. The energy companies have surpressed these technologies for years. Only now some of these renewable energies are beginning to become a little affordable. They are still a long way to go in order to sell at a fair market price for the public. Any way to make a long story short if these alternative energies start taking flight and more and more people get off the grid, and more people see that you can live practically free, the oil compainies would begin to loose their grip on us.

    Stop being a slave to the system. Economics 101, money = debt. The Venus Project can free us from that debt with the intelligent management of resources using advanced technologies. There is no such thing as a utopia. (TVP never said they are a utopia) There will always be problems. Yet if we work together instead of competing against each other, we can solve any problem. Say what you want I'm done with you.

    ReplyDelete
  9. "Your understanding of economics is very questionable because you don't understand the root cause of the problems.":

    My understanding of economics is very questionable, but it is better than most people. It is certainly better than yours. I am no economist, and I am learning more about it. But I certainly understand it better than you. If you propose to get rid of money then you are an economic fool. I propose no such thing and realize the danger of doing so.

    I do understand root cause of the problems. Most of the problems are caused by government interference. Such as unemployment. If the markets were free to operate the unemployment figure would drop drastically.

    "Unemployment in this country, will continue to rise because corporations have to stay ahead of the competition. Outsourcing and technological unemployment (automation) will continue because it's profitable.":

    You commit the standard fallacy of machines causing unemployment. They do not. Nor is outsourcing. Your argument is identitcal to a lot of people who complain about Mexicans that "they took our jobs". I recommend to read Henry Hazlitt's "Economics in One Lesson" that debunks the fallacies that you spout.

    "What will happen eventually is our free market system will become socialist or even worse facist. No jobs, No consumers, no consumption, no consumption the people from the top will fall also. Remember the 3rd world countries can't afford our products with the slave wages they are getting paid.":

    Let us deal with all the non-sense you packed into that paragraph. First of all we do not have a free market system. Then you say it will become socialist or fascist. How? Can you provide justification for that? The US is not a socalist country and will most likely not become a socialist country, that is very doubtful. It is a corporatist country, it may become fascist, that is possible. But how do you know it will become socialist? Can you provide an argument for that. Then you say there will be no employment, there would be no consumption, and no consumers. Again how do you know? Provided justification for what you say. Then you say poor countries get paid wage slaves. That is non-sense. If it was not for oversea jobs a lot of these poor workers would starve to death. The fact that they pick these jobs is only because it was more favorable for them not to pick these jobs. So what you say makes no sense at all.

    "Back to living off the grid which you still never refuted. You only tried to insult me, making yourself look like a fool. Renewable energies are self sustaining and efficient. This is the enemy of the capitalism because it can eventually cut into the profits of big oil, big business.":

    I do not need to refute anything. You are the one saying it is possible to live in a fantasy utopian world with no money and everything available to everybody. You are saying this kind of a world is possible. I do not need to refute. Because you made a claim that this is possible you need to supply an argument to why it is possible. How?

    ReplyDelete
  10. "Remember Free market strives on scarcity not abundance which renewables produce.":

    Free markets do not strive on anything. They strive on whatever the people want. Even "Hello-Kitty" vibrators.

    "The energy companies have surpressed these technologies for years.":

    How do you know? Justify it.

    "They are still a long way to go in order to sell at a fair market price for the public.":

    There is no such thing as a "fair" market price, this is the Just Price Fallacy.

    "Any way to make a long story short if these alternative energies start taking flight and more and more people get off the grid, and more people see that you can live practically free, the oil compainies would begin to loose their grip on us.":

    As much as most people would hate to hear this, oil companies in a way are heroic. Consider this. To get the oil that is used it has to be taken from the ground. In a country, far far away. Then that oil needs to be refined into its useable form. And then brought back into US to be available for everyone to use. These oil companies manage to get all of this done for the price cheaper than a gallon of milk! I say that is pretty impressive. But how would it work in your fancy utopian? Where would all the oil come from? Who would get the oil? And if there is no money for these people to make a profit why would they want to get the oil for you?

    "Stop being a slave to the system.":

    What system?

    "Economics 101, money = debt.":

    What kind of economics is that? If you pick a college textbook on economics they will not tell you money is debt. You do not learn in economics about money is being debt. Where do you get this non-sense from? Stop making up garbage.

    "The Venus Project can free us from that debt with the intelligent management of resources using advanced technologies.":

    Justfiy this. You make no argument how it can happen.

    "There is no such thing as a utopia. (TVP never said they are a utopia) There will always be problems.":

    You certainly do sound like a Utopian. You promise a future with no poor people, no crime, no money, everyone getting what they want. This is not Utopian?

    "Yet if we work together instead of competing against each other, we can solve any problem.":

    This sounds like Marxist doubletalk, "working together". Besides, competition solved a lot of problems. You know why a lot of diseases have been curved, because drug companies, for profit, and in competition, strived to solve this. You know why computers exist? Because of competition. You know why cars exist? Because of competition.

    "Say what you want I'm done with you.":

    No you are not done with me. I know you. You will come and read what I will respond back to you. You are obsessed with what I say. So do not lie. You are not done.

    ReplyDelete
  11. I agree with everything you said except for the idea that we will eventually reach the goal to which the Venus project aspires. Industrial civilization is unsustainable. The age of industrial civilization is a very short epoch that will soon come to an end. The goal of the "Last Man" is a decadent fantasy. Look into the following documentaries: A Crude Awakening: The Oil Crash, Collapse with Michael Ruppert and Surviving Progress.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Wow, this is my first time on your blog, SBJ, but I think you just got another fan!

    I think all this Venus Project nonsense is a sad indicator that grown adults don't have a 7th grade understanding of economics.

    What's also scarier is that they say "Oh, in our society economics won't apply!"

    Bullshit. You can't opt out of economics anymore than you can opt out of science, because economics is the study of how things actually are, like science is.

    Anyway, keep up the good work. Free minds and Free Markets!

    ReplyDelete
  13. Forget the Venus Project or any of these so called utopian ideas, but you do realize that our present life style is 100% dependent on non-renewable resources right.

    ReplyDelete
  14. I went to some of Fresco’s meetings in the 1970’s. My uncle lived next door to him. I had Jacque’s booklist he originally gave attendees and read and studied all the books on it. I was sent tapes of Jacque’s weekly lectures, and these became an ingrained part of my life. I am quite familiar with the man and his ideas. My uncle was a devout follower most of his life, like Roxanne, Jacque’s girlfriend. My uncle had a girlfriend back then in the early 80’s, who was a sociologist. She called the group a cult.

    Many of Fresco and Roxanne's more extreme ideas have downplayed, if not completely ignored, over the years in an effort to gain a wider audience and financial support.

    – Jacque Fresco is a proponent of social engineering and B.F. Skinner and behaviorism. Skinner was all over Jacque’s original booklist. Walden Two, Skinner’s science fiction book, was on there, as was Skinner’s Verbal Behavior. So was Looking Backward by Bellamy. As was Norbert Wiener’s and Cybernetics. By the way, as you probably know, Skinner was discredited long ago regarding human complexity and social conditioning. Noam Chomsky discredited Skinner’s verbal claims.

    – Fresco’s future has children born outside the womb and nurtured in cybernetic nurseries. Look to his first book: Looking Foreword and Social-Cyberneering. Fresco believes that raising children cannot be entrusted to conventional parenting. Children will be raised by daycare centers and the community, like in the science fiction book, Walden TWo.

    – Fresco’s future consists of open relationships and free partnering that will replace nuclear and extended households. It is a future of the “individual,” as you can read in his book: Looking Foreward.

    – Technocrats, that is scientists, will be entrusted to run central planning before society is eventually completely computerized and cybernetic. And we all know that we can completely trust anyone in power. Mr. Fresco easily divorces science from power, prestige, and personal egos.

    – Fresco doesn’t believe that love exists, or many other feelings and ideas we consider human phenomena. This is because he adheres strictly to the Cartesian idea that all human phenomena should only be view through the lens of the material, physical sciences. He believes people are nothing more than complex machines. Hence the Skinnerian simplicity and conditioning he adheres to. The problem is, if you consider people as nothing more than machines, you will end up treating them as such.
    Mr.Fresco is also a self-professed expert in many areas. For an example, on raising children. Yet, not many people know that his own son committed suicide. Fresco extends science, which is nothing more than a tool for thinking, and generalizes it to all of society and human behavior. This is naïve, and very dangerous.

    – In Fresco’s world, language needs to be controlled, in order to make conversation more efficient. Sound Orwellian? Of course, this is not how language and meaning works in our minds. Again, he is a self-proclaimed expert on this, as well, but really understands very little. He simplifies life to where he can understand it and attempt to control it.

    Like my uncle, their education exposure is limited. So it’s easy to come to a final solution. Fresco’s ideas on social engineering were too extreme back in the day when he didn’t care what people thought. And his group went nowhere. He’s learned, over the years, how to play a lot of that down.

    ReplyDelete