So. What have I described here? We currently have economic systems that enable rivalries, with some exclusive clubs that produce thriving, and others trailing well behind. These left behind will be diminished in their productivity even while generating rage at their entitled helplessness. We could have an economic system that aims to make the founding wish of the Constitution a reality. An inclusive system, respecting of all abilities–(yes, some are great, and some are small! All definitely not “competitive”). It is yet to be shown whether so modern a model can be functional, but a more productive, more labor-intensive, fulsomely enabled economy is the consideration–and with people working reduced hours.
Please note carefully–either way–we have conflict and disappointments to manage. Market systems use a medium of exchange that has somehow taken on its own rules. These rules periodically and inevitably change to capture more “winning”, leaving unresolved what has become a common and devastating split in well-being–actually in productivity, note–between populations. Using money enforces certain class divisions!–it does!–through mechanisms that are not oblique at all, but are definitely avoided. In fact, the most damaging part of market systems–the initiating justification for my serious intent to withdraw money from our commerce altogether–is that market systems support veritable manias, by conferring benefits through sanctioned competition, (and often without regard to Best Practices or environmental safety.) Market systems promise if you can get to it first, you can have it. It’s absolutely silly and destructive, an illusory notion, disregarding that “hard work” itself, never mind “smart working,” is not restricted to leadership. Great talents do not evolve equitably–or even sufficiently, from sources that are, even so, worthy.
If economics is at bottom a management task, what can we learn about the maximization of human potential, over the whole spectrum of its evolution? Markets, I believe, have missed the many condundrums that compromise human drive and ingenuity, being focused solely at the top of the ladder, on forging its successes and excitements. For all their excitements, for all their achievements, they have missed the basic task: the support, with maximal room for growth, of the whole human endeavor, which while very able, also has soft underpinnings that are at bottom, quite frail.
If the whole phenomenon of revolutions (Argentina? Arab Spring, Syria–and sorely, sorely, Palestine and Israel) don’t set this point in stark and significant counterpoint, the whole point of ever so slightly shifting goals cannot take on the necessary power for uplifting our whole endeavor. These, and less obviously, given the extremes these situations have broken through, other dysfunctions are prevalent enough. Alcohol and drug dependencies (!), domestic violence, and one-third of American secondary school students dropping-out of school altogether, for instance– are an inevitable, damning drain on our national budgetary health–requiring a necessary insult to the nation’s self-sufficiency. It requires a fix. A once-and-for-all fix, so we can turn our backs on the dysfunction, relieved to be moving forward again.