View Single Post
Old June 27 2013, 02:11 AM   #531
Lieutenant Commander
Re: Roddenberry's Worst Ideas

Belz... wrote: View Post
I think the difference is thus: when you're watching a work of fiction, you can only identify with stuff that is familiar, and you assume that the basic stuff is the same e.g. gravity, air, chemistry, etc. unless specifically noted. In almost all cases, I expect human psyche to be the same or very similar.

The elimination of money -- or any equivalent -- only works if people are radically different from what we are today, or have been for as long as we can look back in time. Such a change would make us something else than humans, presumably, so it's hard to suspend disbelief in this case because A) That's not how people act and B) We cannot identify with people who are so radically different.

Now, I have no problem imagining a future society where money is gone. Perhaps it's very, very far in the future, or some major event changed the game, or it has been replaced by something else that provides and incentive to work. But to say that people can't accept it "for some reason" as if that reason was, on the face of it and without even knowing that reason, ridiculous, is jumping to conclusions without proper evidence or proper discourse.
Some people may have difficulty understanding or relating to it because of the environment they were raised in or interact with. What Gramsci called Cultural Hegemony. (But I should point out that futurist Alvin Toffler mentioned that at least 50% of our transactions are already moneyless.)

Many of my postings in the past did indicate that in the past century there were tremendous attempts to create moneyless societies, the kibbutz movement and Spanish Revolution, which met with some degrees of success.

"Money is hereby abolished and libertarian communism is proclaimed in this village.....The castle has been turned into a warehouse and supply centre. Everyone brings what they can and takes what the need. There is amazement and delight on the faces of women who help themselves to necessary commodities without paying." The Story of the Iron Column: Militant Anarchism in the Spanish Civil War by Abel Paz.

So it's already possible.

You did mention that human beings would be different in some way in a moneyless society. Outside observers did notice changes in human behavior in moneyless societies.

"In the absence of private property, and of money, it is obvious that the profit motive does not operate in this society." Melford Spiro - Kibbutz: Venture in Utopia

Spiro identified 4 incentives; personal, intrinsic, pride, prestige and a 5th incentive unique to the kibbutz.

In Spain:

"All around a heady atmosphere of excitement and optimism prevailed. Gerald Brennan said that 'visitors to Barcelona in the autumn of 1936 will never forget the moving and uplifting experience.' Foreigners who gave a tip had it returned politely with an explanation of why the practice corrupted both the giver and receiver." The Spanish Civil War by A. Beevor

"...almost my first experience was receiving a lecture from an hotel manager for trying to tip a lift-boy." George Orwell - Homage to Catalonia page 5.

"Many of the normal motives of civilized life-snobbishness, money-grubbing, fear of the boss, etc.-has simply ceased to exist. The ordinary class-division of society has disappeared to an extent that is almost unthinkable in the money-tainted air of England..." George Orwell - Homage to Catalonia page 104.

"Yet so far as one could judge the people were contented and hopeful. There was no unemployment, and the price of living was still extremely low; you saw very few conspicuously destitute people, and no beggars except the gypsies. Above all, there was a belief in the revolution and the future, a feeling of having suddenly emerged into an era of equality and freedom. Human beings were trying to behave as human beings and not as cogs in the capitalist machine." George Orwell - Homage to Catalonia page 6.

"As far as my purely personal preferences went I would have liked to join the Anarchists." George Orwell - Homage to Catalonia page 116.

So it seems you're right in some way. That humans would behave differently in a moneyless environment. But I tend to think that you are confusing so-called "human nature" with human behavior.

"I repeat: from the standpoint of social justice, money should be abolished, and libertarian communism is infinitely superior to capitalism..." Dr. Jose Maria Pueyo - The Anarchist Collectives by Sam Dolgoff

Last edited by TheGoodNews; June 27 2013 at 02:15 AM. Reason: a few typos
TheGoodNews is offline   Reply With Quote