A country without Money how it's work?

Discussion in 'General Trek Discussion' started by Brainsucker, Dec 13, 2012.

  1. Brainsucker

    Brainsucker Commander Red Shirt

    Dec 3, 2007
    Well, just like what Picard said in the Star Trek "First Contact", that we don't have money in 24th century. But, is it possible in real life in a very advanced civilization like we are today or beyond? Ok, maybe there is no money, but no currency system at all? Is it possible?

    Because :

    1. Without money, what is the stimulation for people to establish private companies? Work for free? Oh common, we are human not an android. Without money, there is no urge to become rich, so I suspect that there is no private company in 24th century (Star Trek world).

    2. There are two types of humans in this universe. The diligent and the lazy one. So... say you are a diligent human, work hard for the Federation, and I'm a lazy human who love only masturbate myself in a holodeck. So..., without currency system, how could the diligent keep diligent, while the lazy get whipped to work? What is the reward system in the 24th century? If I can take everything without to do anything why should I work? A social work? Not everybody will do it unfortunately.

    3. And what about private property? Like house, food, shirt, or maybe private holodeck, private replicator, and maybe a private starship, etc? I found that Picard's brother has a farm in France and Sisko's father has a restaurant, is it given by the government or what? And what is the privilege for Sisko father to live in his restaurant? Why not me, not you, or other people? If it is given and free, everyone has the right to take it. So why should Picard's brother or Sisko's father?

    4. And what about food? you get rationing or you can get everything as you like without limitation? Say, even with replicator, they need energy, and we know that energy is not free in 24th century. They still need resource. And the government must take it from another planet (there is no Dilithium Crystal in Earth. They must imported it from other planet, and even if it's free, it needs a lot of work to bring it back to Earth). So how could the government prevent the people to waste the energy without any responsibility? Remember there are billion of people in the planet Earth, and everyone need energy to life. And unfortunately, Earth is not the only planet that need energy to life.

    5. And what keep people to work? Is it a hobby? Common, how could people work hard for their hobby constantly for the rest of their life? what if his hobby is playing the holodeck game (just playing and he/she is not even bother to make a holo novel program)

    So either it is rationing, there should be another currency system that being used by the United Federation of Planets. Maybe it is not money, but they have another means to trade. Energy perhaps?
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2012
  2. MacLeod

    MacLeod Admiral Admiral

    Mar 8, 2001
    Great Britain
    It is possible that the basics are supplied. Like a room and bed and rations for re[;ocators. However in order to get larger places to live, more replicator rations etc.. You have to fufil some sort of role in soceity.
  3. scotpens

    scotpens Vice Admiral Premium Member

    Nov 29, 2009
    Los Angeles, CA
    Here we go again! :sigh:
  4. Whorfin

    Whorfin Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

    May 27, 2007
    I think important points are that "we" probably means "Terra", possibly not all of the rest of its colonies, and certainly not all the hundreds or thousands of other cultures in Federation space (members, associates, protectorates, or not). Secondly, it may be a more recent development, as possibly contradictions may or may not apply from TOS depending upon the interpretation of dialogue.

    The point that seems to be being made is not that there are no "value allocation units" (i.e., credits), but rather the culture and its material wealth have evolved to the point that greed has become an almost foreign concept, or at least largely an historical one. Supply has met and overcome demand in a basic sense. Acquisition of knowledge and the usefulness to society are more fulfilling than the accumulation of digits in an electronic account or bigger and better mansions (i.e., material wealth). This does not mean that members who are more useful to society don't get additional rewards (not everyone can have a flat in Paris, for example) but these rewards are awarded on the basis of some sort of (theoretically) unbiased assessment of value to society rather than commercial competitiveness (which is somewhat arbitrary and often exaggerated).

    Just as the current system would seem bizarre to a 24th Century Terran, their (fictional) system is hard to understand from today's perspective. And discussion of it in the current zeitgeist will likely generate contributions from the 20th-21st Century's Culture Wars, and their inherent confusion of freedom, democracy, and capitalism (which would be OT).
  5. Brainsucker

    Brainsucker Commander Red Shirt

    Dec 3, 2007
    Interesting. So it is only in Terra that the "No Money society" is happen. But I don't think that greed is already a foreign concept for human being. Because greed is one of basic human nature. Without Greed, they will stick on the planet Earth and won't explore the galaxy. Plus, if knowledge and the usefulness to society more fulfilling than the accumulation of digits in an electronic account or bigger and better mansions, then human is not evolving, but devolving. Because they evolve from a complex society into more simple society that care only two things in their life. Work for the society (without payment) and study.

    and... how could capitalism be happen in a country without money? The Earth of UFP is definitely a communism type of society, if it's work like what you write. Capitalism is born from the greed of Human being. Without greed, no one will establish a private company. Because nobody want to become rich.

    Yeees, here I go again :p
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2012
  6. Deks

    Deks Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Oct 16, 2003
    There is no desire to create private companies because Humanity moved past that particular way of thinking and decided to work for betterment of everyone (not just the select few).

    The 2 types of Humans you describe are nothing more than a byproduct of the environment (learned behavior).
    There is nothing 'hardwired' into Humans making us one or the other.
    We become one, the other, or something in between because we grow up under specific environmental influences that expose us to different behaviors and ways of thinking which we adopt... coupled with the amount of information we are exposed to (if you as a new-born baby were taken from say USA and left with the Amazon head hunters - you would grow up into a 'perfect' image of an Amazon Head hunter, especially if that was everything you ever knew - you would speak their language, adopt their cultural values, and you'd have 0 knowledge of anything else).

    Money is not the sole motivator for Humans to work on Earth in real-life - otherwise, we would never have hobbies, or volunteer to help others without monetary compensation or rewards of any kind.
    There have been scientific studies performed that demonstrated how money is a good motivator for repetitive tasks... but actually causes a detrimental effect when it comes to tasks that require problem-solving and/or creativity.

    This model might be applied on a global scale if Humanity was actually exposed to relevant general education along if we created the environment that is by itself challenging/engaging/interesting to humans in the first place and based on cooperation as opposed to competition.
    Most people who are seen as 'couch potatoes' mainly are because its either:
    The only way of life they know... or, because they lack the purchasing power (money) to do anything else.

    Besides, a non-monetary system could work.
    Jacque Fresco and the Venus Project for example simply use automation technology to its maximum wherever/whenever possible to eliminate the 'need' for Human labor.
    We ALREADY have enough technology in circulation in reality to automate 75% of the global workforce tomorrow if we desired to do so (although, most of the jobs people work on are unproductive to society at large).
    The notion of 'human labor' has been outdated for decades in the face of how much we advanced technologically.
    In less than a decade, we can repair damage done to the entire planet and create radically more advanced technologies (which would really be about 60 to 100 years more advanced if it actually reflected our latest scientific knowledge in practical application).

    Humanity has been creating abundance for well over 100 years now with science and technology.
    The monetary system was fitting for a time frame when resources were REALLY scarce, but this is no longer the case.
    Today, humanity lives in ARTIFICIALLY induced scarcity - and sad point is, most of the planet doesn't even know it.

    Roddenberry heavily drew on his ideas for TNG from Jacque Fresco's idea of Resource Based Economy and The Venus Project and probably wanted to represent it properly on TV in Trek... however, writers being what they are probably said that many of those things would be deemed 'impossible' or heavy to relate to (given the underlying premise that Trek was a USA show, and numerous people in the said nation had a tendency to basically project various notions onto anything non-capitalist as 'bad'.

    Given the way it would work in a RBE system, governments would not exist.
    And no, it wouldn't be anarchy.
    The underlying premise of RBE depends on the global population being exposed to relevant general education - for example, all subjects relating to man.
    This kind of exposure to education/information would allow people to govern themselves, arrive at decisions using the scientific method (as opposed to 'making' them), would be far less prone to being manipulated/used by others and would be prompted to think in a critical capacity (question everything) and to be problem-solvers.

    In such a scenario/setting... the aim is to first and foremost provide for ALL human needs in a sustainable way (clean air and water, quality/nutritious food, clothing, housing, electricity, heat, access to relevant general education and access to quality medical care - and in this day and age, add in various household technologies, tools, and access to transportation).
    Mind you we already had the necessary means to do ALL that, and more (several times over no less) for 100 years.

    How little do people know of real life technology (and then go to apply such notions onto a society that is supposed to live in post-scarcity).

    First off... Humanity has been producing enough food to feed 10 billion every year for just over 30 years now - this is using agriculture which is fundamentally outdated and has become damaging to our environment (we destroyed about 30% of arable land of the planet already).
    For 50 years now, we had the ability to grow food in fully automated vertical farms that require no human labor, using haydroponics, aquaponics and aeroponics... no need for soil, pesticides, chemicals or GMO for that matter.
    We can grow anything regardless of external weather conditions, the plants could also grow up to 5x faster (look into 'omega gardens' and the means of forcing the crops to fight against gravity) and the said structures could be designed to not only be energy efficient but to also produce energy and water.
    1 fully automated vertical farm, the size of 1 acre and 44 stories high, employing a closed system would be able to feed 613 000 people.
    This easily reduces our footprint on Earth by orders of magnitude as food can be produced in ample supply locally. Oh and we are already producing synthetic (but nutritious) meat (so no more need for killing animals either).

    We had the ability since the 1940's to extract water from the atmosphere.
    If every Human on the planet was as wasteful with their water as the average American (which they are NOT), the globe would have to extract 0.03% of water from the atmosphere daily, all of which would regenerate every 8 days.
    This doesn't take into account desalination technologies that existed for over 100 years now (and the last time I checked, 71% of this planet is covered in water).

    WE had the ability to transition completely by 1929 (or 1931 at the latest) around the globe to geothermal for baseload power/heat production (and eliminate harmful CO2 emissions in the process, using wind as supplement.

    Humanity perfected recycling technology in the late 19th century, giving us the ability to recycle heavy elements.
    Disassembly of matter into base elements and reconstitution into something else, or conversion of it into alternative energy sources.
    By that point in our history, Earth already had tonnes upon tonnes of landfills that were teeming with raw materials which could have been used for creation of synthetic materials with superior properties and can be produced in abundance (negating the requirement of extracting raw resources from the Earth itself).
    Tesla also demonstrated a working wifi power transfer around the same time-frame.

    Energy in Trek universe is abundant and can be produced in several ways, just like in real life - except that Trek 'should' be able to do it better.
    We can also do things orders of magnitude better - if we created our technology using superior synthetic materials that can be produced in abundance (and eliminated planned obsolescence - all of which CAN be done, and HAS been done in the past - the only reason why products and tech break down relatively fast today and provide low levels of efficiency is because we use 'cost effective'/'cheap'/'outdated' materials and methods of production - intentionally done for the sake of profits which in turn creates cyclical consumption and large amounts of waste).

    There is no need for Humans to work 'hard' today given the amount of things that we can automate - the only reason they do work hard (on unproductive jobs no less) is because the socio-economic system creates such a setting.
    However... the last time I checked... why the heck did I bother helping other people by cleaning their computers from dust, re-installing the OS, setting up programs, etc... disassembled desktops and laptops and then put them back together... wasting 6 to 8 hours in the process?
    Oh wait... that's right... because I LIKED DOING IT.
    See... what you perceive as 'hard' and unattractive to do... some people would JUMP at the chance to do it.

    In a world where Humans are FREE to work if the CHOOSE to... THEY get to decide how they will do the work... when, etc. (this actually produces far better results).

    Also... on the notion of 'trade' and 'barter'.
    In a world where money doesn't exist and everything and ANYTHING can be automated (this is scientific reality btw TODAY), why would people resort to trading/barter or currency when the system would be based on:
    Access abundance.
    No 'private ownership' ... just on-demand access to what you need (and want).

    People seem to forget that 'money' (today) provides ACCESS to using something whenever and how you need or want it.

    If a material good that one person has and another one would like to use it as well... they simply need to make a request with the automation center and it would produce it using superior synthetic materials that can be made in abundance (as opposed to using inefficient materials that often times cannot be synthesized like its intentionally done now).

    Note: Human wants stem from society/culture an individual grew up in.
    Today we live in a world that promotes rampant consumption and more importantly, non-sustainability.

    If you want sustainability... you need to expose people to relevant general education.
    Right now, most of those who have the ability to 'afford' education in the first place are exposed to 'industrialized education' which main purpose is to see how good you are at following orders and to get a job and 'be productive' (in a sense of finding a job so you can contribute to the socio-economic system that is on the verge of yet another collapse - only this time, there will not be any recovery because no one is 'irreplaceable' seeing how Humans do specialized tasks - and computers of today are BETTER than Humans are, by orders of magnitude at specialized tasks - for which, they don't need to pass a 'Turing test'- and technology is becoming cheaper at far faster rates than before - companies go for cost efficiency, and Humans cannot be justified as a viable workforce when a machine can do the work many times better, faster, more efficient, without requiring rest, sick days or health care).

    Now... this (rather long) post is supposed to give you an idea what could be achieved in reality - now try to apply that to Trek where its SUPPOSED to be their reality (mixed and mashed with current day perceptions that just don't make any sense for a Trek setting).

    Some of these things were extracted from this particular article which you might want to read through:

    It goes into good portion of details with numbers on what can be achieved using technology/resources at our disposal.
    Needless to say that Trek Humans should have access to vastly superior knowledge and technologies at large, and abundance of resources.

    If you are trying to reconcile different ways of thinking and motivations using perceptions from the present socio-economic system that works in a opposite way... it won't work, because, one cannot solve problems by using same ways of thinking that created the said problems.
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2012
  7. Whorfin

    Whorfin Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

    May 27, 2007

    I can't get your last post to work with the board's quoting/formatting system no matter what I do so its back to basics.

    > Interesting. So it is only in Terra that the "No Money society" is happen. <

    Not necessarily, I was just pointing out that when a human is stating something to another human in Trek and using the term "we" (etc.) it doesn't mean that he speaks for all species or cultures. The UFP is more than Terra or its human descendants, they are just a highly influential, populous segment. The UFP is a confederation of individual worlds, as such it is more akin to the European Union or the United Nations than it is to a sovereign nation, such as the United States of America: the members sometimes don't agree and are very different from each other.

    > But I don't think that greed is already a foreign concept for human being. Because greed is one of basic human nature. <

    To current human nature and all its inherited baggage. Not to human nature after a century or two with no want or need, not to mention social engineering towards the rational goal of avoiding a repetition of the global mistakes that had nearly wiped humanity out once or twice. Gene Roddenberry believed that humanity is perfectible, and he consciously intended the humans in TNG to be more "perfect" than those in TOS, to the chagrin of many of the staff writers. Whether you think its possible or not the people in Star Trek, in general, are intended to be less selfish and more altruistic than us.

    In general, individuals depicted as being greedy in Trek generally aren't the heroes, with the possible exception of Quark and his associates. Normally they are villains or obstructions to the eventual solution of a problem.

    > Without Greed, they will stick on the planet Earth and won't explore the galaxy.

    Just because you don't see a reason for their actions without greed as their motivating factor doesn't mean there isn't one or that many of us here can't see it. I'm sure there are a lot of people who volunteer that are members of the forum. Where I live many emergency response personnel (fire department, first responders, ambulance crew, etc.) are volunteers and are often unpaid (or paid next to nothing), yet they still help others, even at risk to their own lives. The people of Picard's time would seem to be a bit more like them than like... Donald Trump, for example. This is how he (erroneously??) views Cochrane and Co. when he meets them. Its very much in style to claim that altruism doesn't exist or is just plain evil but Star Trek has tried to teach us otherwise. Didn't you get the memo? :devil:

    Second, even if they don't explore the galaxy out of greed, that doesn't mean they don't do so out of need. They are distinct things, however much the Culture Wars try to confuse them. I think that with some exceptions fully developed UFP solar systems are largely independent in terms of resources and trade is to some extent a luxury than an absolute necessity, but there would be exceptions (advanced starship construction being one, less habitable worlds another).

    Third, part of the reason to explore and expand the UFP is to protect undeveloped cultures from exploitation, whether by UFP member worlds or foreign powers. Again, this is the opposite of greed, the opposite of what our current system generally tries to do.

    Last, meeting new cultures is a great way to learn new things, and these "new things" allow possible advancement of science and manufacturing. I never said the UFP doesn't want to grow or acquire new materials or ideas, just that it doesn't do that out of an absolute moral bankruptcy or simply out of a mindless need to maximize consumption that often characterize our own civilization.

    > Plus, if knowledge and the usefulness to society more fulfilling than the accumulation of digits in an electronic account or bigger and better mansions, then human is not evolving, but devolving. <

    Actually its the other way around, its the knowledge that makes the bigger and better mansions possible, not to mention more practical and attainable. Its architecture and material sciences that allow us to live in comfortable homes (better than that of most historical kings and queens) not a particular economic system. The economic systems mainly just dictate with who gets rewarded with the benefits of a given society.

    > Because they evolve from a complex society into more simple society that care only two things in their life. Work for the society (without payment) and study. <

    I wouldn't characterize a culture that is organized around exploitation as being more evolved or complex than one that isn't; quite the opposite. Hopefully you weren't trying to put those words into my mouth. :vulcan:

    First, I never said it was just two things they cared about (those were examples), and I specifically said that there could be better compensation for those who do more to help the society they live in (if they want it; TOS at least implies this). The point is that for all intents and purposes most people will simply have enough of whatever they want and therefore material rewards will no longer have much utility towards promoting useful performance out of individuals. That's the problem.

    Secondly, I hazard that one could find a similar level of crass commercialism in Western civilization in the Middle Ages or the Roman Empire as now. The level of greed hasn't particularly changed (in the long run), just the tools to pry money money out of the 'marks' have. From my perspective your argument seems to be in danger of devolving into the slogan "Greed is Good".

    > and... how could capitalism be happen in a country without money? The Earth of UFP is definitely a communism type of society, if it's work like what you write. Capitalism is born from the greed of Human being. Without greed, no one will establish a private company. Because nobody want to become rich. <

    Show me the episode where the character say's its a communist system. Fans make a lot of assumptions, and that's an example of an interpretation filtered through our overly limited understanding of what is possible. First one equates greed with capitalism, then if one assumes its not capitalist because they aren't greedy enough then it must be communist. These are all possibly false assumptions and the logic is a bit faulty: more than two economic systems are possible in this reality.

    In TOS, some 23rd Century Terrans seem to have (what we would call) commercial jobs (dilithium mining), private companies (Carter Winston in TAS, if memory serves), and great personal wealth (Flynt owns an entire planet). Presumably they have accumulated this via extraordinary services as individuals to society as a whole. Alternately they operate on this level outside of the normal Terran economic system (i.e., dealing with alien cultures, which doesn't seem to be the case).

    I think we only see similar situations in TNG with non-Terrans, and we also get stronger statements about what the Terran or UFP economy aspires to be. I think by the 24th century, for Terans, science and technology have advanced to a point where most material desires are available for essentially no "cost" (efficiency is that high, there's a whole solar system or resources to use, power is plentiful, and automation is presumably considerable, etc.).

    People in Trek are depicted as "owning" property of various types (land, buildings, vehicles) and running what look a lot like typical businesses (such as a restaurant or bar). If one has to compare it to anything from our time it would likely be compared to a heavily socialized capitalism, but just because that's what it looks like doesn't meant that is what it is. Again, the point of human activity is to be useful, and ordinary economic activity is one form of usefulness to society, as is being in Starfleet or digging dilithium out of the ground. Being useful is its own reward in addition to its utility to society, that's the point I think Picard is making.

    Capitalistic societies are founded on the idea of limited supply and excessive demand for it and the exploitation of the discrepancy. Communism was founded on the same concept of supply and demand, but what it promised (but generally failed to deliver through mismanagement) was that those limited resources should be divided up evenly. The real question is not for me to explain why or how the economic system shown in Star Trek works, rather its at least equally up to doubters to prove that our existing systems could work in such an alien reality. Its not a question of whether Star Trek shows a capitalistic system or a communist one, to a great extent both are outdated and irrelevant in the future described. Please think seriously about that while considering the issue.
  8. KamenRiderBlade

    KamenRiderBlade Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

    Oct 24, 2012
    Deks, I love your post, I totally agree with it's views on renewable resource / technology.

    However, all that requires a change in thinking on the general populace which is hard to do with the entrenched society creating a system that binds people to a cyclic system of thinking, working, grinding through life.
  9. T'Girl

    T'Girl Vice Admiral Admiral

    Aug 20, 2009
    When Picard (for example) says "we no longer do ______ ," beyond not including the entirety of the Federation in the "we," likely the "we" only includes a segment of the Human population that has made the decision to embrace the philosophy that Picard was speaking of. Picard is the only character on the show who openly spoke of the non-existence of money.

    Riker at one point spoke of not carrying physical money (for a gratuity), but never said that money (and tipping) doesn't exist.

    Exactly where the majority of the 24th century characters stand on this philosophical issue is unclear.

    Beverly Crusher does use money. Jake Sisko's position would seem to be in flux, in one episode he engages in a series of business deal to acquire money, later he tries to borrow some, then he says he doesn't need it.

    Similarly, only two Humans (and one Ferengi) ever spoke of the separate philosophy of dedicating your life to bettering yourself and all Humanity. It's interesting that both Humans specifically referred to Humanity, and not some larger group like "all intelligent beings."

    How nice, all that 9/11 truther conspiracy stuff that the Zeitgeist Movement is so well known for has apparently been push to the back burner.

  10. Brainsucker

    Brainsucker Commander Red Shirt

    Dec 3, 2007
    Wow, long answers. I need a lot of time to read them all. But thank you for sharing some of your wisdom in here.

    @Deks :Honestly, I like your post. It explain anything. And you're right, that diligent and laziness behavior are depend on the society. But look at this, there is no perfect society in this world, even the suppose to be "Idealistic" UFP, and Terra society. Technology give our society many advantage, but they also give use some negative side effect.

    For example, the computer game and internet cause some people to withdraw from the society. They avoid other people and isolated themselves in their room. The internet also give us porn. Making some people to extensively masturbate and psychologically effected by it. The porn is also put our children in danger of watching it without our knowledge. Long to short, even with the advanced technology and idealistic society, there should be negative side effect in it. And well, lazy people are lazy. There is no perfect human society, unless human is no longer human.

    But well, Trek is a fiction after all, so they have privilege to become too idealistic in what they are doing (after all writers are idealist). Although, well... I think it is too naive to be considered possible and workable.

    Yes, I understand about that. A world where humans are FREE to work if they CHOOSE to. Unfortunately, IF they CHOOSE to work, then they have no obligation for it. Because what? They choose to work, not because they obligated to work. I know about this because I involve in a social organization in my town. I understand the environment of working without being paid. Yes, they work like what you said. We work because we choose to. But we don't have any obligation to do it.
    The example of "Choosing to work without obligation environment" :

    Picard : Mr. Crusher, bring us to the nebula!

    Crusher (has a choice to accept it or not, but he has no obligation to accept Picard's order) : No sir, I choose to not accept your order. Because I don't have any obligation to accept your order! I want to go to the holodeck, and play my favorite holo novel there.

    Picard : Ok then, you can go. I will let the automaton doing the work

    Btw, about they choose to work in 24th century, if it work like that, why there are still court martial and brig? Why Starfleet uses rank system like captain, lieutenant, etc? Rank system is only work in a society with obligation. And obligation is doing some work not because they choose to, but because they obligated to.

    And why they obligated to something? Because of a hobby? So Jeanluc Picard become a captain just because his hobby is exploring the stars. But as long as I know, there is no hobby that make him an admiral and you are his subordinate. No people want to become other's subordinate without any reward in it. You can't order people around just because both of you have the same hobby. But, an Admiral can order his captains around because of their job. A job with obligation, responsibility. And a job has a reward system. So what is your reward to doing a good job? Watching a nebula? fighting a klingon? or get promoted? Let say you accept every order just because you want to become an Admiral. But what happen after that? Ah yes, as Admiral, you have satisfaction, POWER. And what after you have the power?

    @Whorfin : Thank you for fast reply, and wow, it's long, just like Deks. I haven't read all your post because of Deks and your long post. I will reply it after I understand it.
    Last edited: Dec 15, 2012
  11. Deks

    Deks Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Oct 16, 2003
    The only reason we have 'negative side-effects' from use of technology is because of the way it is currently (mis)used.
    We DON'T use it for betterment of everyone or to rid ourselves of most problems, even though we had the ability to do so over 100 years ago.
    Technology alone means nothing if social awareness is not in line with latest scientific knowledge (which in our world has never been the case).
    Those who advocate things are 'impossible', do so mostly because they were not exposed to information that could open their minds to such possibilities in the first place (hence why people kept saying 'we will never break the sound barrier', or 'we won't get to the moon in a million years' - all of which was done within or less than a decade the statements were uttered).
    Couple that with the mentality the present socio-economic system creates (greed, competition, selfishness, acquiring 'status' through accumulation of material goods or how much 'money' you make - to name a few) and you have a recipe for disaster

    Also... there is no such a thing as 'perfect society'.
    The notion indicates a utopia... which implies stagnation and lack of change.
    The underlying premise is flawed seeing how life changes all the time.
    We simply have to work with nature (not against it) and create a society that EMBRACES change, expects it even.

    I already addressed the notion of 'perfect human society' above and why the premise holds no merit (in reality or Trek).
    Ask yourself, what prompts people to escape the real world and immerse themselves in the world of their making.
    Why are they doing it?
    Have you looked at the kind of world we live in?
    We 'have' to work if we are expected to survive (let alone do anything else).
    We also often have to work on jobs which we don't like.
    The world allows rampant resource consumption and infinite growth on a finite planet (which is fundamentally demented).
    The world allows over 1 billion people to starve of which 15 million children to die of hunger on an annual basis even though we have enough food to feed 10 billion every year.
    We have homeless people roaming the cities - even though there's ample supply of quality housing for everyone.
    People are forced to live in destitute because they have no money or options that allow them to do anything else (such options are limited to but a few people when it comes to access because of lack of information, or limited options from the socio-economic [monetary] system that was never designed or could for that matter support the population we have - hence it REQUIRES for people to be out of work and suffering - and in numerous cases, its profitable).
    When you look at the amount of suffering in the world... and majority of people without the ability to truly be free, go wherever they want to without restrictions, to travel, learn, etc... they revert to things that ARE accessible to them, such as escaping into the worlds of their own making via imagination, computers, games etc.

    There's nothing inherently wrong in playing games.
    Actually, Humans could easily learn new things at an accelerated rate through a method called 'gamification of life'. A methodology that is reflected in 'Khan Academy' website - and barely starting to be implemented in 'some' schools.

    I've heard people and society at large berating many people by calling their ideas 'idealistic' and the people themselves as 'naive'.
    Its easy to engage in criticism and actively dismissing ideas without actually thinking about them in a critical capacity or asking something like:
    'How would it work... and what would it take to make it work?'.
    'Human nature' is quite often used as an excuse to justify ignorance. Even Arthur C. Clarke said something along those lines.

    Margaret Mead was the one who said and I quote:
    'Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has..'
    In other words - if you allow notions such as 'naive' and 'idealistic' to be shaped into something that is 'bad', then you will likely reflect such a perception yourself and give up.

    First off... just because there is no obligation for Humans to work, doesn't mean they won't work at all.
    You are still thinking that Humans require reward or monetary incentive to work - this is a false premise that stems from the present socio-economic system.
    The monetary system does a superb job of turning people into mindless drones (no insult intended) because they are never exposed to relevant general education, encouraged to become problem solvers or to think critically.

    Why would Wesley go to a Holodeck and play a Holonovel when he actively expressed a desire to be and work on the bridge?
    He was a Trek example of a child growing up in a setting that exposed him to relevant general education and sparked active interest in science, technology, ship operations, etc. without him needing reward of any kind to do any of it. He was extremely happy when Picard allowed him to sit on the bridge and actually work at the controls.
    We don't really live in a society that actively does that - if anything we live in a society that LIMITS exposure to information/experiences in case of children because its deemed that they are 'too young to learn' - which again, holds little to no merit because children are just like adults - and in order to learn/understand something, they need to be taught, exposed to a variety of information and some experiences - otherwise, you end up with children that even don't know many things or get to learn some of them late in life of their own accord.

    You have to understand that while Trek may have drawn from Resource Based Economy idea, the writers of the series wanted to have the show seem 'relate-able' to the USA viewers.
    That's why they still have judges, prisons, a chain of command, etc.
    These are ALL things that stem from past and current ideas that exist only because of the socio-economic system we live in (because it creates an environment that prompts a need for such things in the first place).
    And since these notions are what currently exists in reality (and, DON'T work as intended), they were applied to Star Trek and gave the viewers something they could 'relate' to.
    Other than that... such notions/jobs would probably be completely phased out in a world where money doesn't exist.
    Even today, its only a matter of time before we phase it out and decision making is delegated to machines (which is happening at an increasing level).

    As I explained above, Star Trek was a TV show created for the USA market.
    Even if Roddenberry wanted to, he COULDN'T have portrayed it EXACTLY the way he wanted because the network wouldn't allow it.

    But... to try and explain it within the confines of the Trek system would probably be like something along the lines of this:
    Picard himself stated to one of the Humans in 'the Neutral zone' episode that the kind of 'power' people in positions of power had in the past and today (to control ones life) is nothing more than an illusion.
    So you see, there is NO pursuit of power within StarFleet (or at least there shouldn't be) because it would be pointless.
    Humanity is implied to have moved on from such notions that any attempt at 'seizing power' wouldn't even get a chance to get started because... what would be the point?
    And if there was, the only reason it was portrayed was because of the 'drama' factor - nothing else.
    This 'drama factor' was invoked on many occasions in Trek (and other scifi shows) to completely shoot down the credibility of science, technology and problem solving just so a specific plot would play out (otherwise, it wouldn't even be given credence to arise in such a setting - and indeed so, when Trek fans began examining the issue up-close, they realized that the writers 'conveniently forget' about many things just so a specific plot device would work because... they couldn't push themselves properly to imagine how life would work - therefore, they mostly super-imposed present day situations onto a society that was supposed to have 'moved on').

    If you still insist of looking at a job as a reward system... the closest thing you 'might' say is that the 'reward' is the realization that you helped someone else with the knowledge you had.

    Ask yourself... why do many children engage in activities that prompt them to learn new things... explore, etc... all without a reward system of any kind?
    Its because they express an interest in it.

    Perhaps it would help if you don't look at it as a 'job'.
    When you don't see something as 'work' but still engage in it with even higher level of interest than someone who would see it as 'work'... you manage to achieve very high results.

    So, in Trek... what you see as 'work' and 'jobs' - Humans in Trek (and many in real-life) would probably see as fun 99% of time.

    Since there is no intricate need for Humans in Trek to actually work... they engage in various 'jobs' to stay mentally and physically active because they realized a LONG time ago that they would be incredibly bored of just sitting on their rear ends doing nothing.
    Most people in real-life cannot bear to sit around the house doing nothing - so they try to find things to occupy their time... engaging in all sorts of activities and hobbies (some that could easily be seen as 'difficult' and 'complex' by many).
    Now imagine what would happen when you eliminate money as a requirement to access things and EVERYTHING is accessible.
    You could go wherever you want... be wherever you want, explore, learn... engage in things that interest you, participate and contribute to other people's lives.
    There would quite literally be very few if any limits to what you could do.
    Today, you are limited in what you can do by the purchasing power at your disposal.
    Last edited: Dec 15, 2012
  12. Deks

    Deks Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Oct 16, 2003
    I don't think it was ever at the forefront of what the movement advocates.
    The first Zeitgeist movie created by Peter Joseph was to my knowledge an 'experiment' at trying to prompt awareness that something is wrong with society, but at the time couldn't exactly figure out what (which is something he actually stated if I'm not mistaken).
    In the second movie 'Addendum' he gave those ideas more direction by focusing on the concept of Resource Based Economy and the Venus Project as envisioned by Jacque Fresco.
    These ideas were more thoroughly explored in the third movie 'Zeitgeist: Moving Forward' by focusing on what is often seen a direct cause of our problems (the socio-economic system we have currently in place).

    As for conspiracy theories... well, for one thing, we would be rather closed-minded to discredit the notion that such things are not possible... especially seeing how our history has examples of conspiracies that turned out to be accurate.
    Plus... Humans seem to apply the notion of 'impossible' too often - this mainly stems from lack of exposure to relevant general education.

    I think there's a possibility that Peter Joseph created the first Zeitgeist movie as an attempt to try and expose people to different ideas... to get them to think and examine the same situation in a more critical capacity without simply taking the media and elected officials at their word (which intricately has nothing to do with the scientific method, and is much more based on the premise of 'belief' and 'faith' - something that is completely unnecessary given that we live in a world of 'global communications' that is currently available to a large portion of the human population for cross-referencing and examination of information/data).

    When exposed to multiple ideas and information, one has to find a way to see which ones correlate and work, and which don't - but also keep in mind the notion that just because it may or may 'work' doesn't mean its necessarily accurate or wrong - seeing how things are subject to change at any given time as our technology, methodology and knowledge grows/changes.
    Its a way to approximate (at best) of what is happening in the real world by arriving at decisions using the scientific method. There is no 'absolute truth', only explanations that might temporarily explain a given chain of events (subject to change at any time).
    Last edited: Dec 15, 2012
  13. Mysterion

    Mysterion Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Jun 28, 2001
    SB-31, Daran V
    Free-market Communism?

  14. Santaman

    Santaman Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Jul 27, 2001
    Hmm, more a open source society.. ;)
  15. Longinus

    Longinus Commodore Commodore

    Sep 2, 2008
    Federation is (at least by TNG) a post-scarity society. You don't have to work, an yes, I assume that there a lot of people who don't. Most still want to do something they feel makes a positive contiribution to the society.

    Many famous scientists, politicians and explorers of the past were from nobility or other wealthy upper classes. These were people who didn't have to work, they already had all the wealth they needed. They did those things because they wanted to, not because they had to. It's like that for everyone in Trek.
  16. Brainsucker

    Brainsucker Commander Red Shirt

    Dec 3, 2007
    Wow, fast and long reply. Thanks Deks. I'll read it more. But after I read Whorfin's post

    @Whorfin :
    So, according to you UFP is a kind of United Nations type of organization and not United State type of Government? Interesting. Because as far as I know, Federation means the unity of many states type of Government just like USA, not inter countries community like United Nations.

    If, UFP is an inter planetary community just like United Nations, then it is a fragile organization that has no authority or the sovereign of a country. Looks at how fragile the UN in RL. They can't even do anything to Syria just because Russia and China vetoed to. And... a United Nations type of organization wouldn't use Federation as their name. They would simply use United Planets, not United Federation of Planets.

    Well yes, Greed, dream, ambition, etc. The word of "greed" is definitely has negative notion while dream and ambition has more positive one. Greed means that you want more and more, while ambition is a destination that you want to reach.

    After re-thinking about the Trek's type of Earth Society, I think that it is possible to be realized. What they need are a new type of doctrine to brainwash the human society on Earth, and propaganda machine that make them believe that the system is right. It just like what happen to the Earth in Medieval Era. Where church was very dominant in the society, and force the society to believe in God. Well, it worked, although it was not perfect.

    The difference is that the medieval era people were stupid and poor; they were brainwashed with preaching and the fear of God. While the Earth Society in Trek are matured and smart. They are brainwashed with leisure and idealistic ideology. But... I suspect that this kind of society has one weakness. It is the competitive environment.

    If people "choose" to work rather than "need" to work, then only some of them would CHOOSE to work. The other would prefer to enjoy the luxury life and become unemployed. And because it is a choice without reward, then the competitive environment would vanish.

    I don't know about how Western people think about life, but I'm an Asian irl. Maybe I'm not idealistic enough to understand the idealistic Trek's Earth Society like the other's do. Because what I know is a workable society and a not workable one. And I believe that the Trek's idealistic Earth Society is not workable. Because it would cause stagnation to the Human society. Without competition, how would humanity improve?
  17. T'Girl

    T'Girl Vice Admiral Admiral

    Aug 20, 2009
    The word federation actual has many meaning and usages, the one you cited is just one. It can also be a league like structure or a association. Basically a federation is a collection of peoples, or countries, or communities, or organizations, or groups that combine for a particular purpose.

    If you think about it, why do they use both "united," and "federation?" Wouldn't one or the other, combined with "planets," kind of cover it?

  18. Brainsucker

    Brainsucker Commander Red Shirt

    Dec 3, 2007
    thanks for your reply Merry Christmas

    I don't know if Wikipedia is a valid Wiki, but this is "Federation" according to it :

    A federation (Latin: foedus, foederis, 'covenant'), also known as a federal state, is a political entity characterized by a union of partially self-governing states or regions united by a central (federal) government. In a federation, the self-governing status of the component states, as well as the division of power between them and the central government, are typically constitutionally entrenched and may not be altered by a unilateral decision of the latter.[1]

    It is definitely different to United Nation, but it fit to the characteristic of USA model of government. Plus, according to Wiki, it is a union of states with a central Federal government above them.
  19. The Castellan

    The Castellan Commodore Commodore

    May 2, 2004
    The Plains of Cydonia
    I like how you think.:techman:

    I think it's mainly because they don't WANT to accept the idea, you know it's like the ostrich in the sand thing.

    Our history is FULL of events showing those in power don't always have our benefits and interests in mind, just their own. Governments and military have always wanted to take away more rights, freedom and privacy from their people, and use theoretical security as the justification.....happened in Nazi Germany, happened in Communist Russia, happening now in China and America (Yes, it's happening in America as well)...and also groups have been made to allow/help those governments do just that. It's been around for a long time and if someone says it can't happen here, because "IT'S AMERICA!!!!!!" or "It's the 21st century!" or "It won't last that long, or they have a good reason to do it!" shows to me how historically IGNORANT some people, especially mainstreamers, can be. Plus the word conspiracy and conspiracy theorist should not be looked upon with disgust or ridicule, most people that attack them or their suggestions often fear they might actually be right, and naysayers often fight harder to stop them if the theorists are correct. for 9-11, for example, Jesse Ventura brought up on interviews, "why should we all go "How dare you?!" if someone questions things like 9-11 and so on?" We're supposed to learn by asking questions and not just take it unquestionably.

    Notion of impossibility is not so much as educational, as more emotional, that something long ridiculed may actually be the right answer. Or that they simply don't like the theory or don't want to be proven wrong, or possibly lose their position in life. Like if Tesla's work was not destroyed by that asshole, JP Morgan, and to a lesser extent, Thomas Edison, we could not only have escaped the oil trap, but maybe be possibly a century more advanced in technology....plus I've read so many news articles of alternative energy scientists and researchers found dead....all labeled as 'suicides'.....I already smell a rat, there, since I refuse to believe that THAT many alternative energy scientists are THAT depressed. Plus with the middle east.....our government pretty much helped these guys get in power decades ago, and also a vain of lithium has been discovered recently, worth about a trillion bucks.....and they say it's NOT because of wealth and resources. And I nearly got expelled from school when arguing with a science teacher after he threw away my scientific notes I made regarding both abiotic oil theory, that its not organic based and not finite, plus some stuff that would knock newton and einstein's work down a few pegs....but he would not even let me discuss it....and boy did we have a fight in class.....become a class hero and made that old fart teacher eat a little bit of long over due crow. Hell, there was one guy on this forum who said guys like Eric Van Daniken, a proponent of Ancient Alien theory, be prosecuted for the theories he's been circulating. Not only does that reek of the mentality from the dark ages, with a dash of Gestapo thrown in, but also intolerance to anything that questions the conventional. Seems people, authority figures especially, would rather be correct than happy.

    You get a cookie....oh hell, a box of cookies, friend. :techman:

    With money....to me money is only a means to an end, when it becomes the end itself, there's a big problem, and that problem is happening now. Also, I live in a small, rural, farming community....and when one of us is in a jam, we help each other out, not asking for anything in return. I also help folks with problems, not asking for anything. I give advise or lend a hand if asked, not asking for anything, except where the bathroom is and MAYBE a glass of water. And if we want our future to be more like Trek and less like Mad Max or most humanity in Dr. Who, money's priority needs big time adjustments, and we'll never achieve anything real if we're only busting our butts to pay the bills and taxes.
  20. KamenRiderBlade

    KamenRiderBlade Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

    Oct 24, 2012
    I'm Asian also, but I believe that Trek's idealistic Earth Society is doable, it just will take alot of work, many decades or centuries of education, and probably alot of blood shed between people in power and those not in power.

    I think it can happen, just not easily. Breaking away the current socio economic / education mindset will take a long time to do, but it'll have to start at some point.