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Old June 26 2013, 01:08 PM   #526
Bad Thoughts
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Re: Roddenberry's Worst Ideas

Or maybe, humans simply do not use currency with one another. You can get a beer (ok, earth ale) free, but the replicator stinks or you can get an imported andorian ale, but you need to pay for it. The betterment of themselves stops at the first bar that serves non-human drinks.
One may wonder if the Chateau Picard is made primarily for the export market.

Nonetheless. even in the contemporary world, where almost all currency has a symbolic value, transactions between individuals requires that their respective governments have adequate financial relationships: balance of payments, currency reserves, etc. In the ST world, larger business dealings may not be so problematic, as the Federation could easily keep a reserve of gold pressed latinum to satisfy the Ferengi government. A small businessman, like Quark, operating an auction between peoples of numerous cultures would likely be less willing to rely on symbolic values and prefers to be paid with something that has an intrinsic worth.
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Old June 26 2013, 10:27 PM   #527
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Re: Roddenberry's Worst Ideas

Bad thoughts wrote: View Post
Ultimately, it was a stupid idea because it had no explanation behind it.
No, it was an intriguing idea that didn't receive the adroit or clever handling it needed. At least the late Iain Banks remained consistent and interesting on this subject.
It's strange but not surprising that there are a few on this forum who accept just about everything from warp drive and tele-transportation to green ladies and tribbles, but can't seem to wrap their untalented little minds around the no money concept because it makes them feel queasy for some jingoistic reason. They find it an affront to their petty idol god of capital. Never mind that under the money system they remain alienated wage-slaves and debt-slaves. Yet, in their chronic absurdity they accept and defend this condition vigorously if clumsily and become only outraged at any suggestion of an improved state of affairs for them.

"If they had asked, Ledje told her, I might even have told them; I was running away to the Culture because I heard they'd escaped the tyranny of money and individual power, and that all people were equal here, men and women alike, with no riches or poverty to put one person above or beneath another." Surface Detail by Iain Banks.

Last edited by TheGoodNews; June 26 2013 at 10:29 PM. Reason: a typo
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Old June 26 2013, 11:04 PM   #528
Bad Thoughts
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Re: Roddenberry's Worst Ideas

TheGoodNews wrote: View Post
It's strange but not surprising that there are a few on this forum who accept just about everything from warp drive and tele-transportation to green ladies and tribbles, but can't seem to wrap their untalented little minds around the no money concept because it makes them feel queasy for some jingoistic reason. They find it an affront to their petty idol god of capital. Never mind that under the money system they remain alienated wage-slaves and debt-slaves. Yet, in their chronic absurdity they accept and defend this condition vigorously if clumsily and become only outraged at any suggestion of an improved state of affairs for them.

"If they had asked, Ledje told her, I might even have told them; I was running away to the Culture because I heard they'd escaped the tyranny of money and individual power, and that all people were equal here, men and women alike, with no riches or poverty to put one person above or beneath another." Surface Detail by Iain Banks.
I hope you aren't speaking of me: that would be a misrepresentation of my opinion.
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Old June 27 2013, 12:26 AM   #529
Belz...
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Re: Roddenberry's Worst Ideas

TheGoodNews wrote: View Post
It's strange but not surprising that there are a few on this forum who accept just about everything from warp drive and tele-transportation to green ladies and tribbles, but can't seem to wrap their untalented little minds around the no money concept because it makes them feel queasy for some jingoistic reason.
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.
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Old June 27 2013, 12:34 AM   #530
Charles Phipps
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Re: Roddenberry's Worst Ideas

Eh, I have no problem simply because of Post-Scarcity as an idea.

People have no money because they have everything they could conceivably want, just by asking.
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Old June 27 2013, 02:11 AM   #531
TheGoodNews
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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
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Old June 27 2013, 02:33 AM   #532
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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.

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.
I tend to agree with a lot of this post. Maybe the idea of a society using no money is just foreign to a lot of people, even sci fi fans.

Especially when they don't explain the particulars, like how were they able to pull that off without replicators.

There is something very stiff about 23-24th century humans. They dont always come off as 3 dimensional (Opera is the main music, people drink mainly tea all the time, throwing plays set in the 16th century is THE entertainment for all ages.)

One problem is that Trek doesn't dive right into it the subject and have those amusing conversations about it, like what you'd see in a Quentin Tarantino movie .

All we got where small statements about it. I wonder why Trek was so stiff with going into the subject?

Another question is, why do other cultures who have replicator technology insist on dealing with money when theoretically, they should easily be able to feed and clothe themselves, and create a strong industrial base?

I definitely get what Trek is saying. A no money society is supposed to be one of our ultimate achievements.

Life started off struggling and preying on one another, and now we can feed and clothe ourselves easily .

Actually I have a harder time understanding resistance some people have to the idea, to the point where they claim the idea is communist or socialist or something.
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Old June 27 2013, 11:03 AM   #533
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Re: Roddenberry's Worst Ideas

Charles Phipps wrote: View Post
Eh, I have no problem simply because of Post-Scarcity as an idea.

People have no money because they have everything they could conceivably want, just by asking.
And why would you do anything in such a society ? What's the incentive ?
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Old June 27 2013, 02:27 PM   #534
Charles Phipps
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Re: Roddenberry's Worst Ideas

Belz... wrote: View Post
And why would you do anything in such a society ? What's the incentive ?
Avoiding mind-numbing boredom comes to mind. Holo-potatoery isn't going to appeal to everyone.

The conceit of the Federation isn't that there's no money, it's that they've somehow made work fun and fulfilling.

No one wants to empty the bathroom recyclers or scrub the warp coils but plenty of people would love working on a starship in other areas.
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Old June 27 2013, 02:34 PM   #535
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Re: Roddenberry's Worst Ideas

Charles Phipps wrote: View Post
Avoiding mind-numbing boredom comes to mind. Holo-potatoery isn't going to appeal to everyone.
Trust me, if I didn't need money, I wouldn't work. I'd do what I do when I'm on vacation or during the week-ends. I might do what's considered "work" by personal interest, but I'm not going to put any effort into something I don't feel like doing.

And who's going to do the real hard work ?

I mean, it's a fun idea in a way, and if automation does all the work, it might actually be feasible to a degree, but I don't see humans bursting their asses for nothing in the forseeable future.

Personally, I think money is probably the most significant invention in our history.
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Old June 27 2013, 02:45 PM   #536
Charles Phipps
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Re: Roddenberry's Worst Ideas

Belz... wrote: View Post
Trust me, if I didn't need money, I wouldn't work. I'd do what I do when I'm on vacation or during the week-ends. I might do what's considered "work" by personal interest, but I'm not going to put any effort into something I don't feel like doing.

And who's going to do the real hard work ?

I mean, it's a fun idea in a way, and if automation does all the work, it might actually be feasible to a degree, but I don't see humans bursting their asses for nothing in the forseeable future.

Personally, I think money is probably the most significant invention in our history.
The big reason Gene Roddenberry's cashless society is so hard to fathom for a lot of people is, to me, partially the fact so few people actually get to do what they want in RL. The American dream is mostly the dream of getting by.

They're swamped with debt, bills, questions about how they're going to pay for medicine or education or their house. You have to run as fast as you can in the world to stay in place. It's hard to really wrap your head around having security if you've never had it.

I have a different perspective on this since I was, at one point, actually rich. I'm not now (thanks economy), but it's interesting note that my family members who grew up with security still worked. None of us were Paris Hilton rich but we all took jobs, essentially to make sure we just weren't living off the family. I did dishes until I finished paying for my college and later ran my own business.

I think the most utopian aspect of Roddenberry's vision isn't that everyone would be in the holodeck 24/7 (which might be the case for some) but that everyone can relax about where their next meal is coming from enough that they can enjoy themselves as well as reaching self-actualization. Study to be an engineer, scientist, or whatever.

Which actually makes sense of Picard's craziness to an extent.
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Old June 27 2013, 06:11 PM   #537
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Re: Roddenberry's Worst Ideas

Charles Phipps wrote: View Post

The big reason Gene Roddenberry's cashless society is so hard to fathom for a lot of people is, to me, partially the fact so few people actually get to do what they want in RL. The American dream is mostly the dream of getting by.

They're swamped with debt, bills, questions about how they're going to pay for medicine or education or their house. You have to run as fast as you can in the world to stay in place. It's hard to really wrap your head around having security if you've never had it.

I have a different perspective on this since I was, at one point, actually rich. I'm not now (thanks economy), but it's interesting note that my family members who grew up with security still worked. None of us were Paris Hilton rich but we all took jobs, essentially to make sure we just weren't living off the family. I did dishes until I finished paying for my college and later ran my own business.

I think the most utopian aspect of Roddenberry's vision isn't that everyone would be in the holodeck 24/7 (which might be the case for some) but that everyone can relax about where their next meal is coming from enough that they can enjoy themselves as well as reaching self-actualization. Study to be an engineer, scientist, or whatever.

Which actually makes sense of Picard's craziness to an extent.
Thats all well and good but who is going to work in waste extraction if they dont get paid cause no one is going to work there for free just to better themselfs
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Old June 27 2013, 07:45 PM   #538
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Re: Roddenberry's Worst Ideas

Crazyewok wrote: View Post
Charles Phipps wrote: View Post

The big reason Gene Roddenberry's cashless society is so hard to fathom for a lot of people is, to me, partially the fact so few people actually get to do what they want in RL. The American dream is mostly the dream of getting by.

They're swamped with debt, bills, questions about how they're going to pay for medicine or education or their house. You have to run as fast as you can in the world to stay in place. It's hard to really wrap your head around having security if you've never had it.

I have a different perspective on this since I was, at one point, actually rich. I'm not now (thanks economy), but it's interesting note that my family members who grew up with security still worked. None of us were Paris Hilton rich but we all took jobs, essentially to make sure we just weren't living off the family. I did dishes until I finished paying for my college and later ran my own business.

I think the most utopian aspect of Roddenberry's vision isn't that everyone would be in the holodeck 24/7 (which might be the case for some) but that everyone can relax about where their next meal is coming from enough that they can enjoy themselves as well as reaching self-actualization. Study to be an engineer, scientist, or whatever.

Which actually makes sense of Picard's craziness to an extent.
Thats all well and good but who is going to work in waste extraction if they dont get paid cause no one is going to work there for free just to better themselfs
Exocomps.
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Old June 27 2013, 07:51 PM   #539
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Re: Roddenberry's Worst Ideas

robau wrote: View Post
Exocomps.
Well seeing as waste extraction if refered to as a actually job given as punishment or to slowly ensigns and enlisted it figure if Starfleet are useing people for that job then Civilians will need to do it for Civilian waste extractors.
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Old June 27 2013, 09:13 PM   #540
Belz...
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Re: Roddenberry's Worst Ideas

Charles Phipps wrote: View Post
I think the most utopian aspect of Roddenberry's vision isn't that everyone would be in the holodeck 24/7 (which might be the case for some) but that everyone can relax about where their next meal is coming from enough that they can enjoy themselves as well as reaching self-actualization. Study to be an engineer, scientist, or whatever.

Which actually makes sense of Picard's craziness to an extent.
I'm not sure I follow. Again, in a moneyless society, what would you do with your day ? Why would you go work long hours at the hospital, or pick up garbage, or do some construction work, or fill out forms when you can spend your day at the beach, or in a museum, or watching tv ? I mean, if you can have anything you want anyway, why do any hard work unless you feel like it ?
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