Capitalism, like nuclear power, has been one of our most successful ideas for creating order from chaos, but left unchecked it will swiftly create chaos from order.
It demands our constant vigilance in order not to fail catastrophically. It can go wrong very quickly – and costs for a fortune to clean up when it does – creating decades of horribly unnecessary conditions for those caught in the fallout.
Photo by Pablo Garcia Saldaña is just some volcanic ash looking suitably like nuclear fallout spreading over a city.
At action, humans are satisficers.
At profit, humans are optimisers.
After some light experiences with coaching and therapy style conversations, I have 2.5 conclusions:
1. It doesn’t matter much if you’re happy or sad, the key thing is to be doing something worthwhile. If you prioritise happiness, you’re selfish. If you prioritise money, you’re a fool. If you prioritise beneficial impact for others*, you’ll at least have done something worthwhile.
* As determined by objective existential threats.
2. The main thing seems to be just to do whatever you’re doing with a smile, patience, and to hide frustration.
3. We arguably don’t feel ENOUGH pain. The whole “be happy” thing seems to be about avoidance / designing out pain. I’d argue that pain is a useful motivator to act. We perhaps *should* allow ourselves to feel it so that we don’t become complacent.
15th in maths and science
33rd in life expectancy,
20th for public debt
36th for education expenditure
34th in infant mortality,
27th for renewables
2nd biggest arms exporter, including to 22 of the 30 countries on the UK Government’s human rights watch list
146th in savings
10th in press freedom
10th in purchasing power
22nd in happiness, only 1 ahead of Oman
Most expensive city in the world
14th in environmental performance
17th in wellbeing – behind Brazil and Panama
28th in beer consumption
19th in median household income,
10th in exports.
With reference to the opening scene of The Newsroom
Summary of the suggestions outlined by Douglas Murray in his book “The Strange Death of Europe: Immigration, Identity, Islam“:
- Actually try to make it nicer where they are
- Admit there’s nothing wrong with being proud of being European
- Offer temporary asylum only, where appropriate
- Pay for refugees to do work in Middle Eastern countries
- Decide who has legitimate claims to asylum before they arrive in Europe
- Deport those without a viable claim
- Acknowledge whatever errors have been made in pro-immigration arguments so far, primarily:
- Demographic offset: to counter our aging population, whilst failing to acknowledge that the immigrant population will also age
- Diversity: is great, but there is a diminishing return. The 5,000,000th immigrant probably doesn’t add as much that the 500th did.
- Stop branding ALL concerns as fascism since it supresses the more rational debate. Don’t, however, shy away at all from naming fascism for what it is wherever it occurs.
Posted here without judgement, and for easy reference.
SpaceTech – what humans get up to when they aren’t worrying about with which country they belong to, who technically gets to make the laws they’ll have no control over anyway, which non-existent god to bother, which bathroom to use, or what height to be at whilst a bit of music is playing.
Mind you, at least that keeps everyone else busy whilst science just turns up and gets the job done.
It turns out there is little more likely to galvanise me to action than a bunch of people doing the intellectual equivalent of moaning about the long toilet queues without actually checking the cubicles.
Life timestamp reminder: you’d just listened to Dangerous by Milo Y.