A GUIDE TO HALTING THE EXTINCTION OF THE HUMAN RACE By stopping economic inequality
Presented By Doctor Anonymous (Doctor A) May, 2019
There is abundant literature to show that new technology is a fundamental driver of economic inequality. Among the following seven basic points below, this effect of new technology on equality will be explained and substantiated in “The Guide to Saving Humanity.
1) Technological singularity is defined as a hypothetical point in the future when technological growth becomes uncontrollable and irreversible, resulting in unfathomable changes to human civilization. Due to the exponential processing power of the coming super computers, a technological singularity will occur. Advancing at inconceivable rates, it will overwhelm our human capacity to understand it. This rapidly approaching future is expected to create one of either two adverse events. The first is a dystopia, an imagined state or society in which there is great suffering or injustice, typically one that is totalitarian or post-apocalyptic. This new reality will be perverted beyond recognition from that of our present-day existence. The second adverse outcome is that it will create an even greater likelihood of a world causing human extinction.
2) This dismal future is being caused by an inherent difference in brain structure between liberals and conservatives. Scientific research clearly shows that conservatives have a larger amygdala—a brain structure grouping of neurons shown to play a key role in the processing of emotions—that is more prominent in conservatives than in those of a liberal persuasion. In conservatives the larger amygdala incorporates an evolutionary survival mechanism that is more fear based. This excessive fear mechanism manifests itself in the thoughts and actions of conservative individuals causing them to act in ways that promote economic inequality. In other words, it is this fear-based aspect of the conservative brain structure that causes them to advance increased economic inequality in our society.
3) Since the 1970s—spurred on by conservative fear-based policies—economic inequality has dramatically increased. Most of the social and health ills of the world are directly caused by this inequality. Historically economic inequality has been the basis for the collapse of many past civilizations. The United States, with an ever-increasing rate of economic inequality, is well on this same path to self-destruction.
4) As stated above, there is abundant literature to show that, new technology is a fundamental driver of economic inequality. Not only will the top 1% mindset not try to regulate this rapidly advancing new technology, but they will want to generate high profits from it so that they can create even newer technology that will further exacerbate economic inequality in favor of their own interests and at the expense of the wellbeing of the general population. This conservative fear-based mentality places a higher value on profit motive than on welfare for all. This means that conservatives will apply little regulatory control to the coming technological singularity; it will run its course unabated in order to maintain a high profit motive for the few at the top. Consequentially, this quest for profits and a lack of regulations will either bring about a dystopian future of inequality-based suffering and lack of the people’s democratic power or human extinction—or, ultimately, both. To prevent these dire events, we must first stop runaway economic inequality.
5) Almost all economic inequality is initially premised at a subconscious level and occurs with little conscious thought. The proven social psychology of this occurs by placing an individual on a specific tier in the social hierarchy. The gap in social rank between an individual’s lower socio-economic standing and that of those at the top of the hierarchy is what defines economic inequality. Research shows that this inequality manifests itself as toxic to both the individual and society at large. By reducing economic inequality, we can reduce its insidiously progressing poisonous impact upon us all.
6) The proposed Economic Inequality Rating App (EIRA) will rate products, services, and individuals based upon how much economic inequality they produce. A high rating on the EIRA means that the product or service for purchase creates a high amount of economic inequality and should be avoided in favor of a purchase with a lower EIRA rating. This choosing of a company or service with a lower economic inequality rating will transfer wealth from the elite 1% back to those who support the 99% when the product or service is purchased. This reduces economic inequality (without changing any laws or voting anyone into office) simply by giving the consumer accurate information by which to make their purchasing decisions. By having a rating system based solely upon economic inequality parameters, we members of the 99% can make an informed and purposeful decision to reduce economic inequality, which in turn will support all our best interests.
The ratings loaded into the app will be determined by a team of experts based solely upon economic inequality parameters; this differentiates us substantially from other rating systems. The EIRA tells us what product or service to choose solely based upon how much that product or service will reduce economic inequality. Because economic inequality is what causes most of the problems in the world and is at the core of creating many misalignments in other value systems, these other value systems will need to be subordinate to the value of reducing economic inequality.
7) The transfer of wealth from the 1% back to the 99% by use of the EIRA will significantly reduce the nationwide economic inequality experienced in today’s society. This puts power back into the hands of the 99% where it rightfully belongs. Only then will economically based social ills within our society begin to dissipate—including the dire consequences of a realized dystopian reality and ultimate elimination of the human race. Our future's bleak outcomes are being enhanced by two powerful streams merging together to create the ultimate disaster: the coming technological singularity and increasing economic inequality. Economic inequality creates more new-technology profitability for the 1%, which then creates more uncontrolled economic inequality through further investing in new technology. These two streams—technological singularity and economic inequality—massively feed upon each other. The proposed EIRA can change the trajectory of these negative outcomes for the betterment of all humanity.
A GUIDE TO SAVING HUMANITY
Many experts in the field of Artificial Intelligence (AI) predict computers will soon be able to mimic human thought to the point where exponentially advancing computer intelligence will either distort our world into an unrecognizable dystopian reality or cause with a high degree of certainty the extinction of the human race. Neither choice is palatable. I believe the key to altering this bleak trajectory is through the control of economic inequality. Specifically it is by stopping inequality through the Economic Inequality Rating App (EIRA), a newly proposed technology that will have the means to halt the soon coming extinction of our own species.
These fatalistic words about our future may sound melodramatic and hyperbolic to some, but I can assure you this is not an exaggeration. It is all too true. The accurate description of our present predicament is based upon facts and scientific research. If anything, these words minimize the gravity of the situation. This Guide will explain why this is true, the seriousness of the position we currently find ourselves in, and what we can do about the problem now before it is too late.
FACTORS LEADING TO HUMAN EXTINCTION
How Frightened Should We Be of A.I.? Link: https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2018/05/14/how-frightened-should-we-be-of-ai
"A number of scientists and engineers fear that, once we build an artificial intelligence smarter than we are, a form of A.I. known as artificial general intelligence, doomsday may follow. Bill Gates and Tim Berners-Lee, the founder of the World Wide Web, recognize the promise of an A.G.I., a wish-granting genie rubbed up from our dreams, yet each has voiced grave concerns. Elon Musk warns against “summoning the demon,” envisaging “an immortal dictator from which we can never escape.” Stephen Hawking declared that an A.G.I. “could spell the end of the human race.” Such advisories aren’t new. In 1951, the year of the first rudimentary chess program and neural network, the A.I. pioneer Alan Turing predicted that machines would “outstrip our feeble powers” and “take control.” In 1965, Turing’s colleague Irving Good pointed out that brainy devices could design even brainier ones, ad infinitum: “Thus the first ultra intelligent machine is the last invention that man need ever make, provided that the machine is docile enough to tell us how to keep it under control.” It’s that last clause that has claws."
Artificial Intelligence could make us extinct, warn Oxford University researchers https://nakedsecurity.sophos.com/2015/02/17/artificial-intelligence-could-make-us-extinct-warn-oxford-university-researchers/
''Researchers at Oxford University have produced the first list of global risks ‘that pose a threat to human civilization, or even possibly to all human life. ’The report focuses on risks with ‘impacts that for all practical purposes can be called infinite’. Artificial Intelligence (AI) is on it. And while human extinction might be a horrific, accidental side effect of climate change, a metorite impact or a super volcano, the report warns that AI might decide to cause our extinction deliberately (my emphasis): ...extreme intelligences could not easily be controlled (either by the groups creating them, or by some international regulatory regime), and would probably act to boost their own intelligence and acquire maximal resources for almost all initial AI motivations. And if these motivations do not command the survival and value of humanity, the intelligence may be driven to construct a world without humans. This makes extremely intelligent AIs a unique risk, in that extinction is more likely than lesser impacts."
HOW THE ECONOMIC INEQUALITY RATING APP (EIRA) CAN
PREVENT HUMAN EXTINCTION
There is a way to halt the extinction process, but first we need to stop economic inequality through the EIRA. Economic inequality exists within a nation when the perceived subconscious gradient between the rich and the poor becomes too large. It is this gradient that creates the injury to individuals and society. In fact, the greater the economic inequality within a nation, the greater the grave health and social problems that society will suffer. An individual's standing in the socioeconomic hierarchy creates the dire ill effects caused by economic inequality that includes a full range of maladies such as wars, drug and alcohol addiction, pollution, and racism just to name a few.
What Is the ERIA?
The EIRA is a proposed app that will provide clear guidelines as to which products and services, or which individuals providing these products or services are aligned with the 99% in contrast to those aligned with the 1%. It does this by rating levels of economic inequality.
By rating the various contributors to a product or service, from supply chain through distributors, along the dimension of how much economic inequality they produce, the EIRA will determine which products and services have a higher economic inequality rating. A consumer can then make an informed decision about which product to buy or which service to hire based upon that rating. This process of choosing lower rated items will reduce the overall amount of economic inequality within our society.
The hand held (EIRA) app on your cell phone will be a mechanism to transfer wealth that would normally go to the 1% elite back into the hands of the 99%. This transfer of wealth will stop economic inequality which is the real culprit leading to our demise. The mechanism is at the forefront of a revolution necessary to stop the literal destruction of humankind
Should an individual purchase an item or service not supporting the 99%? We think not. By following these ratings, the 99% can not only capture the revenue normally lost to the 1% through economic inequality, but also redirect this revenue back to themselves for their own benefit.
This technology will make economic choices in support of the 99% simple and convenient to use; individuals can then change the economic equation back in favor of the 99%. This freedom of choice in the marketplace completely bypasses the usual political, tax, and judicial gridlock by placing the power directly back into the hands of the 99% to decrease economic inequality. (Details of this EIRA mechanism and a video are presented towards the end of this document in Part III)
This Guide explains why we must revolt against inequality, especially economic inequality to save ourselves. Until this material is understood and implemented, little will be accomplished in our quest to save the humanity. In fact, indicators point to the destruction of humanity in the near term due to inequality. This Guide also explains why we are wrong in our current understanding and inability to change our plight, the powerful forces constraining us from moving forward, and what can be done now to change the outcome of our dangerous situation through the development and implementation of the EIRA.
In order to grasp the nuts and bolts of how the EIRA will function, an understanding that economic Inequality has its own prioritized value system is needed.
"Values can be defined as broad preferences concerning appropriate courses of actions or outcomes. As such, values reflect a person's sense of right and wrong or what ‘ought’ to be. ‘Equal rights for all’, ‘Excellence deserves admiration’, and ‘People should be treated with respect and dignity’ are representatives of values. Values tend to influence attitudes and behavior…"
Knowing what is right or wrong or what "ought" to be is important, but of greater importance is the harm done by economic inequality. It impacts and warps all our other value systems. For example, in areas of high economic inequality, homicide rates skyrocket. This misalignment of a social value to commit murder is directly related to levels of economic inequality predicated largely upon an altered need for respect. For this reason, and for the purposes of the Economic Inequality Rating App (EIRA), the choices we make in purchasing an item or service must be based purely upon economic inequality parameters and not other values. Economic inequality in the long run will be the overriding concern for humanity. In other words, the core problems we face are caused by economic inequality and many misalignments of other value systems are subsequently based upon it.
Who among us would not like to have our own personal social value system be the law of the land? However, by knowing how much economic inequality subjects the individual and society to misery and how it will usher in the eventual extinction of our species, we will all need to free ourselves of these thoughts and choose the product with the lowest rating on the EIRA regardless of other values we may hold dear. This may seem callous and even cruel but a sacrifice of our other social values when it comes to selecting a product or a service for purchase is essential for the greater good. In this case, the ends do justify the means.
This does not mean we abandon our other values at the altar of the lowest EIRA rating or that we toss out our value systems altogether. No, this is not what we do at all. To the contrary, we continue to fight for them in different ways such as through educational campaigns and in different areas such as voting initiatives. However, for the purpose of changing the harm economic inequality does to the individual and society, a lower EIRA score needs to supersede our thoughts to support our other value systems in the arena of purchasing boycotts.
Sometimes our values collide when we have to make important purchasing choices. The EIRA helps to realign our choice processes and guides us to maximizing a reduction in economic inequality. Accordingly we will depend upon the EIRA to guide our decision making and we need to adhere to its ability to do so especially when our other values collide with its findings. Put another way, all other values need to be subordinate to stopping economic inequality when it comes to purchasing boycotts.
Here are some examples of conflicting value situations we may find ourselves in:
A manufacturer of cell phones, which happens to makes a spectacular mobile device, has reportedly used slave labor in Asia to assemble their products. Although we find this repugnant, if this manufacturer has the lowest EIRA rating then this is who we purchase from compared to similar phones regardless of our abhorrence against slave labor.
A Big Pharma company uses animal testing to verify the effectiveness of their products. Again, we would choose this product if it had the lower inequality rating over another even though we find the animal testing repulsive.
An individual may support LGBT rights but the supermarket chain we shop at supports the opposite as evidenced by a lawsuit in the local paper. However, the supermarket has a low inequality rating compared to another chain in the neighborhood based upon the EIRA. In this case we would still defer to the market with the lower rating when choosing where to shop even though we may fully support LGBT rights.
In these examples, the choosing of the lowest rating goes against the grain for many people and is counter intuitive. Yet it is the only way to truly solve the morass we find ourselves in today. Economic inequality is truly so corrosive and harmful that it is necessary to defer some of our other values to stop it. This is part of a new way of thinking that puts lowering economic inequality first.
In any event, there still needs to be a transfer of wealth to the less fortunate for any meaningful reduction in economic inequality to occur and this is the role of the EIRA. This redistribution will bring about a positive change in peoples’ lives and is a guiding light regarding reducing economic inequality.
The EIRA allows us to make choices regarding the reallocation of wealth in favor of the 99%. It is a tool we can use to reduce economic inequality for ourselves and others. But it is unrealistic for any one individual to keep track of all the variables influencing the economic inequality landscape. It is an overwhelming task. As humans, we just do not have the mental capacity to do so.
Everyone is into "doing something," but this "doing" is mostly at a high level of thought processing. But economic inequality operates mostly at a subconscious level and is quite ubiquitous. This is what makes it so insidious and impactful upon our psyche; this is why it is so difficult to change. The EIRA helps us to free ourselves from the chains binding us to our subconscious.
This is not an easy task and is essentially the reason we need to rely upon the EIRA. This tool helps us overcome our blindness to the economic inequality being created around us. Because of the way our brains are hotwired, we cannot think fast enough or take in a sufficient amount of accurate data to make an informed decision during a purchase. The EIRA solves these problems for us.
For these reasons, the development of the EIRA rating will require its conceptual construction to be created by specialists in economic inequality policy, economists, social psychologists, and others who can separate out social values from true economic inequality principles. This is the real value of the EIRA.
This now leads us to a discussion of Buycott.com and JustCapital.com, two companies trying to reduce economic inequality. However, because both companies are predominately social value minded versus economic inequality oriented in their approach, little will be accomplished by way of reducing economic inequality. The world's problems will remain intact and unchanged.
A description of Buycott is painted in the following article,
Digital Trends Buycott’ App Review: Scan a barcode and learn everything about the company that made it By AJ Dellinger May 25, 2013 https://www.digitaltrends.com/mobile/buycott-review/
"Buycott serves two separate but equally important functions: It informs you about the companies that are behind a given product, and it allows you to set causes you believe in to help you determine what to buy and what to avoid. The first of those functions takes place when you scan an item’s barcode with your phone’s camera. After you scan an item, Buycott searches its database to provide you with as much information as it possibly can about the maker of it. You get everything from contact information – phone numbers, emails, social media accounts, and headquarters location – to a family tree that lists off all related companies and shows you how they are connected. This is probably one of the most eye-opening areas of Buycott. Seeing big companies all laid out with the dots connecting them back to one another shows you just how small the corporate business world really is."
"Aside from company information, Buycott will also tell you a product’s status in ‘campaigns.’ Campaigns serve as a way for you to determine what is important to you. There is a wide range of campaigns you can join. There are trending groups, ones that are currently popular and drawing in members, or you can search through campaigns that fall into a variety of categories from animal welfare to economic justice to human rights. There is some overlap between groups – you’ll see quite a few dedicated to demanding GMO (genetically modified) labeling, for example – but it’s easy to see which campaigns have more complete lists of companies to support and avoid."
"…remember that there’s something here to fit anyone’s agenda. Under the “Social Responsibility” category, there is a campaign called “Avoid Koch Industries,” which aims to point people away from Koch owned companies because of “their mission [to place] profits before our communities, our environment, and our democracy.” On the same list is a “Support Koch Industries Campaign” that backs the corporation because the brothers “have generiously donated millions of dollars to libertarian, fiscal conservative, and limited government causes.” There are campaigns pushing for stricter gun control and ones dedicated to supporting the Second Amendment. You can probably find your side of an issue somewhere within Buycott’s campaigns."
To date, after reviewing their website, I do not see where much has changed since the writing of this article. At no time do they take a stance as to which corporations or products are better than others relative to economic inequality. Furthermore their app is related to social values through their campaigns and their lack of distinguishing one campaign from the other as being better or worse than the other is apparent.
For example, having both pro and con campaigns regarding Koch industries and second amendment rights is schizophrenic at best with the campaigns acting more as popularity contests already mirroring the view of the common person. This may make the individual who self selects their own value system feel good about themselves but it is really invoking stagnation at best. It just reflects the push and pull of ideologies already ingrained in our society. Little will be accomplished.
JustCapital is a bit more of a mixed bag but their prominence as a social value platform is on display when its co-founder and board member, Deepak Chopra states the following:
From: The Chopra Foundation JUST Capital: The Next Revolution in Economic Wellbeing 17 Apr 2015 by Deepak Chopra and Martin Whittaker https://www.choprafoundation.org/consciousness/just-capital-the-next-revolution-in-economic-wellbeing/
"Do you spend time socializing with people whose core values you question? Do you turn a blind eye when people you know act in ways you find fundamentally abhorrent? Probably not. Now, what if you knew a company was operating in a way that went against something you felt strongly about. Would you adjust your purchasing activity? Or would you prefer to buy from, or work for, or invest in those businesses operating in ways that align with your values? For us, the answer is yes – and that’s exactly how it should be. Companies should be rewarded for helping, not harming, our collective society.
Most of us think of corporations as our employers, or as the providers and manufacturers of countless products and services that we use to make our lives more convenient and comfortable. Often, we enjoy a transactional relationship with the brands we are loyal to, but in the rush of everyday routine we don’t stop to think about how these brands impact our society on a fundamental level.
Let’s say you are a self-identified environmentalist – someone who makes a conscious effort in your personal life to do things large and small that make a difference. Or maybe you care more about social issues, and are active in supporting underprivileged communities in your neighborhood. How do you know if you are making the right decisions as a consumer to buy products or services from corporations who share your concern for the environment? Likewise, how do you know if companies in your 401(k) retirement plan are paying a living wage to minority workers, or providing good benefits, or behaving in a manner consistent with your social values?
The truth is that outside of conducting extensive and time-consuming research, people do not know if corporations are acting in a way that aligns with their values – whatever they may be."
Furthermore, the JustCapital mission statement identifies them as a social values minded company,
"At JUST Capital, our mission is to build a more just marketplace that better reflects the true priorities of the American people. We believe that business, and capitalism, can and must be a positive force for change. We believe that if they have the right information, people will buy from, invest in, work for, and otherwise support companies that align with their values."
JustCapital's redeeming quality regarding economic inequality comes from the fact that one of its rankings out of many is related to a direct redistribution of wealth by ranking various aspects of the pay level employees receive.
I wish to emphasize those issues of pay as a redistribution of wealth is not a black and white issue but rather presents as shades of gray. For example, vacation pay, health benefits and travel pay represent indirect forms of wealth distribution. This is the reason it will take a trained team of experts to determine the correct weight these indirect issues lend to the EIRA's overall score.
Economic inequality is ultimately a progressive versus a conservative issue because most of the underlying mechanisms for creating economic inequality are due to conservatives’ brain structure which in turn creates conservative ideology and policy. The research is abundantly clear that new technology is a main driver creating economic inequality and the new American Plutocrats who create this technology are predominately conservatives.
Overall our future's bleak outcomes are being enhanced by two powerful streams merging together to create the ultimate disaster: the coming technological singularity and increasing economic inequality. Economic inequality creates more new-technology profitability for the 1%, which then creates more uncontrolled economic inequality through further investing in new technology. These two streams—technological singularity and economic inequality—massively feed upon each other. But the proposed EIRA can change the trajectory of the negative outcomes and avert the impending disaster.
Although there are many conservatives in the 99%, they too will need to address the question of selecting products and services either by social value systems or by economic inequality parameters. Even though this choice may be repugnant to some and a bitter pill to swallow, anyone in the 99%, regardless of ideology, will need to choose reducing economic inequality over other social value systems if we are to survive. Above all else, economic inequality parameters need to supplant other social values when it comes to purchasing decisions; this is what will reduce economic inequality. Once this takes place, the human organism is designed subconsciously to take notice and adapt as long as the reduction is significant and sustained. Only after this occurs will we be in a position to realistically change the social value systems from the misalignment caused by economic inequality. But if economic inequality is not reduced we will end up like Nero-- fiddling as our country burns in an intractable tug of war between progressive and conservative thought. This push and pull stagnation will cripple our ability to legislate policies needed for good governance, and to regulate the coming technological singularity. It is only by the 99% standing up to the 1% that this can happen.
In the grand scheme of things it is a small sacrifice to make our purchasing decisions based exclusively upon economic inequality principles and not other social value systems. This will create a shift towards more positive outcomes for the benefit of all humanity. Surely it is worth the sacrifice.
Posts from FirstRateCrowd’s forum website:
What follows is a four part compilation of posts from the Fight Inequality forum website (Presented by FirstRateCrowd.com). The website is a compendium of new ideas and solutions urgently needed to address our obligation to stop inequality and ultimately our own destruction. In this matter, time is of the essence but in a manner previously never thought of before. This is due to technology’s ever-accelerating rate of growth in conjunction with the rapidly deteriorating political process careening us toward annihilation as a species.
The scope of this Guide will be constrained to stopping inequality and its abhorrent impact upon society. However, it assumes the reader has some knowledge of the coming technological singularity , a soon to be future in which technological development will advance at exponential rates beyond human control. (This is a separate but integrated factor. Reference material regarding the singularity can be found on the website.)
Briefly, the ultimate goal of stopping inequality is to change the trajectory of the singularity and prevent it from becoming our dystopian future. To understand the urgency of our quest, this future can be summed up in the words of a super artificial intelligence theorist, Eliezer Yudkowsky, as he described this emerging future in 2007,¬¬:
"It began three and a half billion years ago in a pool of muck, when a molecule made a copy of itself and so became the ultimate ancestor of all earthly life. It began four million years ago, when brain volumes began climbing rapidly in the hominid line. Fifty thousand years ago with the rise of Homo sapiens. Ten thousand years ago with the invention of civilization. Five hundred years ago with the invention of the printing press. Fifty years ago with the invention of the computer. In less than thirty years, it will end."
From my view, and that of many researchers in the field of artificial intelligence, we are still on a course towards fulfilling this dark and unbridled prophecy. Unless we do something about this now, we are quickly heading towards our own deaths.
Yet I believe there is still time to accomplish our goal of halting economic inequality and thus reversing the impact of the singularity. By 2029 A.D., about 10 years from now, it is estimated Artificial Intelligence will be on par with the adult human wet brain. Sometime after that, with estimates of 2045 A.D. to 2049 A.D., the full effects of the technological singularity will be known. I think a window of opportunity still exists of at least 10 years plus a number of unknown more years thereafter. Depending upon the speed of the developing singularity and unknown tipping points, I believe there is a point beyond which no return may be possible regardless of any actions we take.
The way to transform the progress of the singularity to a more benign trajectory is to stop inequality through the use of the EIRA. This app will shift the levers of power from the hands of conservatives back into the hands of progressives; it is these progressives who desire to change the path of the coming singularity for our continued existence and betterment.
This is a case for why the old form or structure of activism no longer works to stop the wealthy elite conservatives from continually winning the battle to subjugate the less fortunate through economic inequality.
Re: FirstRateCrowd's EIRA
Post #22 by Sterling Volunteer » Wed Mar 06, 2019
Doctor A presents a new and compelling model for activists fighting against inequality. I now understand why my past actions, so filled with youthful exuberance, were ineffective in bringing about the change I yearned for in the world with my advocacy at the local, state, and national levels. As I now take a panoramic view of the world many decades later, it little resembles what I hoped would change in the world; the changes I so vehemently fought for. What went wrong? Doctor A tells us what went wrong and how we can remedy our past mistakes. He presents the four basic mechanisms the elite use to thwart us. After reading his post as to why we cannot win our battles against inequality with the outdated strategies and tactics we were employing, I now realize I was wrong in my assumptions about the powerful forces countermanding any actions me and my fellow activists had taken. Any gains we made were merely only temporary respites against the wealthy elites. A more realistic and honest assessment indicates that we continually lost ground to their overwhelming power. After all of those years of fighting for justice and a progressive humanized world, we have been beaten. Perhaps you have a similar view as you look around at the state of the world today. If you are like me, it is probably not the kind of world you envisioned or want as a future.
The original post is found on the website under “Donald Trump and the Republican Party” then under the subheading of “Brain Structure “as post #28. I believe this knowledge is so crucial to our understanding of our plight that I am presenting it here in its entirety under this topic so it will receive a wider audience. A full understanding of the mechanisms holding us back is essential to our moving forward against economic inequality. It is paramount we all understand where we have failed in the past; this way we can take a different direction allowing all of our goals to be filled. ~SV~
Doctor A's original post:
There needs to be a new direction of thought and action away from organizational and individualistic centered ideology towards that of a unified front to stop economic inequality. Conservatives’ brain structure, policy and regulatory capture by the rich, money in politics, flaws in capitalism, and movement nearing the rise of a technological singularity will all play a role in crushing any hope for humanity unless this new direction is achieved. Until that time, it will be business as usual with the last two human generations witnessing ever increasing economic inequality in the USA. This being proof positive that the old way of thinking is outdated and outright ineffective. What follows is a compilation of four basic mechanisms taken from the FirstRateCrowd website which are instrumental in enslaving our thoughts and actions unless we change.
4 BASIC MECHANISMS THAT NEED TO BE CHANGED:
1)First Basic Mechanism: Conservative minded brain structure
Janebird21's ending to post @22, under FirstRateCrowd’s EIRA will automatically and forcefully create massive fear in the minds of conservatives when she says:
“Instead of welfare programs, what if policymakers looked at fair taxes and wealth distribution. What if that 1% paid their share of taxes and this was redistributed?”
You can test this for yourself by presenting these concepts to known rabid conservatives, and then monitor their reactions as I have done.
Fear usually manifests itself either as (A) not getting what an individual wants or perceives they should receive, or ( B) by perceiving to lose something they already have. I can almost guarantee the terminology used by Janebird21 will end with an angry and fear based response from the conservative to the effect that you are trying to steal from them all they have worked so hard for and which justly belongs to them as a God given inalienable right. Furthermore, if you try to persuade the conservative towards a more balanced approach with reason, logic, and facts, this will only further anger them with an even more palpable sense of fear driving their anger.
Biological Mechanism of Fear
(The main biological mechanism underlying this fear is presented in my post #20 under this same thread and repeated here.)
Brain Structure Drives The Consequent Effects Of Economic Inequality or “where Donald Trump's reptilian brain (amygdala) deprives oxygen to the frontal lobes”.
Many times I will say the conservative brain structure "short circuits" their ability to reason and process facts in an attempt to ameliorate the fear as indicated in my previous post with the quote,
"We know the brain structure of Republicans is different from that of Democrats. Functional MRI's indicate the amygdala in Republicans, the structure of the limbic system which deals with emotional reactions, is enhanced. That is to say, anxiety and fear play a larger size role in how you process information. To put it bluntly, it short circuits your ability to reason and process facts in an attempt to ameliorate the fear. The wording "short circuit" is not the most appropriate and here is a more nuanced and scientific approach as to what really happens.
A Psychological look at how Trump's 'reptilian brain' motivates his actions
By Deborah Stuckey Mulhern, Ph.D. Posted Jun 22, 2016
“…. Donald Trump is a slave to the fear-driven operating system of the amgydala -- a small almond shaped structure that lies at the nexus of the three levels of the brain and is derived from the reptilian brain. Trump's power lies in his ability to activate this same operating system in his followers.
He has fine-tuned the skill of activating the primitive fear of the enemy or the "other" with speech and facial expressions -- the two things that most interest the amygdala. The amygdala knows no nuance. It sees nothing but bad and good, enemy or ally. And it is primed to see the former everywhere. When the amygdala takes over, the lower, reptilian brain is activated. And when this brain is activated, reason and sense are irrelevant.
Actually, not just irrelevant but physiologically embargoed. When the lower survival brain states are activated, blood flow is shunted away from the more highly evolved frontal lobe making thought and conscious decision difficult, if not impossible. This is the state of mind in which Trump speaks to his followers and the state of mind that he activates in them. That is why his words don't matter; only his emotions do. Logic and reason are silenced when the lower brain gains dominance. He and his followers are resonating with fear and anger at a pre-mammalian level. It is not a level at which to make decisions, let alone policy.
2) Second Basic Mechanism: Policy or regulatory capture along with money in politics needs to be changed:
There are reasons why the political process is ineffective in correcting economic inequality especially in the long term. Sterling, in his post # 12 under the topic First Rate Crowd's EIRA, captures the essence of this unproductive process as he writes: “Power begets power and a five to four conservative court vote will ensure the demise of Roe v Wade, the passage of laws to suppress minority voting rights, and a continuation of the gerrymandering process as a means for Republicans to stay in control. Are you tired of the political process yet?
Importantly, control of the country's political levers allows the Republicans to maintain their authority over tax policies in favor of the rich. Hence ensuring the remainder of the population will continue to suffer from unabated economic inequality.”
Doctor A in his previous post was correct when he presented the EIRA as an alternative to putting so much energy into the political process.
Stanford Professor Walter Scheidel is quite frank when he writes about income inequality in his new book, The Great Leveler: Income Inequality is a Destroyer of Civilizations.
The Professor says, "Income inequality can be mitigated by policy, but is only leveled by upheaval - produced by war, state collapse, or revolution."
Our collective psyche has been indelibly imprinted from grade school on that this path of voting in political policy is the way to proceed and has made us blind to other alternatives. With regards to economic inequality, it is not the correct course of action. In fact, "mitigated by policy," the outcome of the political process, is both a slow and an uphill battle.
Jessica, in her post #13 under the same topic, builds upon Sterling's post by pointing out flaws in the political process that act as an effective means to stop economic inequality:
“Political policy undergoes continuous erosion when it comes to correcting economic inequality. Money in politics and regulatory capture (including corporate capture) ensures the wealthy will always come back into power. The EIRA is a means to stop this insane never ending process.” Like Sisyphus of Greek mythology who was forced to roll an immense boulder up a hill only for it to roll down when it nears the top, repeating this action for eternity, it is the same with our political battle against the wealthy. For those of us who have lived many decades and have experienced this process first hand, we know the political process is a frustrating and demoralizing cyclic endeavor to control the power of the rich. It is said colloquially that power begets power, absolute power corrupts absolutely, and the rich get richer. So it has been forever.
What Prevents The Change of Power?
There are levers of power that sustain this ongoing insane process. Here are just two such levers:
1) Money in politics lever:
How Money Corrupts American Politics
“The perfectly legal flood of money that pervades American politics has fundamentally corrupting effects.
The effects of money are manifold, subtle, and hard to pin down, but a number of pathways of influence can be laid out. Most are based on judgments about the best available evidence, short of irrefutable proof. But on certain key points the quantitative evidence is fairly conclusive. Political scientist Gary Jacobson and other scholars have pinned down how monetary advantages affect chances of winning congressional elections. Large amounts of money are virtually essential if a candidate is to have any serious chance of winning. Inability to raise big money leads to losing general elections, losing party nominations, or giving up even before getting started. Thus the need to raise money acts as a filter, tending to eliminate public officials who hold certain points of view – even points of view that are popular with most Americans.
The need for money tends to filter out centrist candidates. Most congressional districts are gerrymandered to ensure a big advantage for one party or the other, so that election outcomes are actually decided in low-salience, low-turnout, one-party primary elections. Primaries are usually dominated by ideological party activists and money givers, who tend to hold extreme views and to reject all but the purest partisan candidates. This contributes to party polarization and legislative gridlock in Congress.
The need for money filters out candidates on the economic left. Democratic as well as Republican candidates have to raise big money, most of which comes from economically successful entrepreneurs and professionals who tend to hold rather conservative views on taxes, social welfare spending, and economic regulation. As a result, few candidates whose views are not broadly acceptable to the affluent are nominated or elected.
The quest for money tilts candidates' priorities and policy stands. Countless hours spent grubbing for money from affluent contributors changes candidates' priorities and sense of constituent needs. As they speak with potential donors, candidates hear repeatedly about resentment of progressive taxes and "wasteful" social spending. Special tax breaks for corporations and hedge fund managers start to sound reasonable.
Affluent citizens get extra influence by turning out to vote, working in campaigns, and contacting officials. Campaign contributions are not the only way in which affluent people get involved in politics; these same people tend to be active in other ways too, underscoring their importance to candidates.
Money can tip the outcome of close elections. Money spent on media, organizing, and turnout tends to increase vote totals, giving a significant advantage to candidates favored by money givers.
Money buys access to officials. When big contributors contact officials they tend to get attention. Their economic resources enable them to get a hearing, to offer help with information and expertise – even to draft bills. Research shows that Money buys access to officials.
The quest for re-election money affects officials' priorities and policy stands. From the moment they win office, candidates look ahead to the money they must raise for reelection, and this is bound to steal time from official duties and slant their attention toward constituents who are substantial donors.”
2) Regulatory capture (and corporate capture) lever:
"Regulatory capture is a form of government failure which occurs when a regulatory agency, created to act in the public interest, instead advances the commercial or political concerns of special interest groups that dominate the industry or sector it is charged with regulating. When regulatory capture occurs, the interests of firms or political groups are prioritized over the interests of the public, leading to a net loss for society. Government agencies suffering regulatory capture are called "captured agencies"
"Likelihood of regulatory capture is a risk to which an agency is exposed by its very nature. This suggests that a regulatory agency should be protected from outside influence as much as possible. Alternatively, it may be better to not create a given agency at all lest the agency become victim, in which case it may serve its regulated subjects rather than those whom the agency was designed to protect. A captured regulatory agency is often worse than no regulation, because it wields the authority of government. However, increased transparency of the agency may mitigate the effects of capture. Recent evidence suggests that, even in mature democracies with high levels of transparency and media freedom, more extensive and complex regulatory environments are associated with higher levels of corruption (including regulatory capture)." Harvard Law School Forum on Corporate Governance and Financial Regulation: The Corporate Capture of the United States https://corpgov.law.harvard.edu/2012/01 ... ed-states/
"American corporations today are like the great European monarchies of yore: They have the power to control the rules under which they function and to direct the allocation of public resources. This is not a prediction of what’s to come; this is a simple statement of the present state of affairs. Corporations have effectively captured the United States: its judiciary, its political system, and its national wealth, without assuming any of the responsibilities of dominion. Evidence is everywhere.
The “smoking gun” is CEO pay. Compensation is an expression of concentrated power — of enterprise power concentrated in the chief executive officer and of national power concentrated in corporations.
This is the essence of “capture” – CEOs are enriched, while all other corporate constituencies, including government, are left with liabilities. A relatively few autocrats have taken control over the policies and wealth allocation of the United States.
The financial power of American corporations now controls every stage of politics — legislative, executive, and ultimately judicial.
With its January 2010 decision in the Citizens United case, the Supreme Court removed all legal restraints on the extent of corporate financial involvement in politics, a grotesque decision that can have only one effect: maximizing corporate – not national — value. Today’s CEOs have been granted the power to direct political payments and organize PAC programs to achieve objectives entirely in their own self-interest, and they have been quick to use it.
Capture has been further implemented through the extensive lobbying power of corporations. Abraham Lincoln’s warning about “corporations enthroned” and Dwight Eisenhower’s about the “unwarranted influence by the military/industrial complex” have been fully realized in our own time. Reported lobbying expenditures have risen annually, to $3.5 billion in 2010. Half of the Senators and 42 percent of House members who left Congress between 1998 and 2004 became lobbyists, as did 310 former appointees of George W. Bush and 283 of Bill Clinton.
Capture has placed the most powerful CEOs above the reach of the law and beyond its effective enforcement. Extensive evidence of Wall Street’s critical involvement in the financial crisis notwithstanding, not a single senior Wall Street executive has lost his job, and pay levels have been rigorously maintained even when, as noted earlier, TARP payments had to be refinanced in order to remove any possible restrictions.
Finally, capture has been perpetuated through the removal of property “off shore,” where it is neither regulated nor taxed. The social contract between Americans and their corporations was supposed to go roughly as follows: In exchange for limited liability and other privileges, corporations were to be held to a set of obligations that legitimatized the powers they were given.
But modern corporations have assumed the right to relocate to different jurisdictions, almost at will, irrespective of where they really do business, and thus avoid the constraints of those obligations.”
LLike the epic battle between hyenas and lions, this political fighting for economic control between the rich and those that have not is viscous and enduring. This is madness. Let us put an end to this nonsense by supporting the EIRA . It creates a new environment not controlled by these politically generated forces and can stop economic inequality. The political process is ineffective in creating long term results on our behalf whereas the EIRA bypasses the pitfalls of politics and directly solves the problem of inequality.
Rachel Maddow on MSNBC presents examples of Trump loading lobbyists into federal positions as clear examples of modern day Regulatory Capture. (See also Corporate Capture and Policy Capture)
Below is a short video of her program vividly detailing this process from her show.
The title of this show is: Trump has chosen lobbyists to run EPA, HHS, DOD and Interior. Link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FEbiXJ5-Icw&t=13s
3) Third Basic Mechanism : Flaws in capitalism, which disproportionately impacts the poor, keeping us bound in the status quo.
The home page section of this website, under BASIC CONCEPTS, with the title, "Our Position Paper On Economic Inequality," points out basic flaws in capitalism. It also showcases the EIRA as a counter balance to traditional capitalism as quoted here:
“FirstRateCrowd’s, Fight Inequality website, is the vanguard of reasoned capitalism, leading the way to prevent its own demise. Aspects of our economic system are shattered, providing instability of unprecedented proportion. In the past one hundred years, we have witnessed a major depression, a major recession, and now rampant inequality. These dramatic shifts indicate a flawed system; they certainly are not indicative of a smooth operating and well oiled machine. History is well-equipped with examples of this type of volatility bringing about a precipitous economic system change, a change we do not want. Our crowdsourcing Community, with its power of choice based upon "the wisdom of the crowd," and the EIRA, can help to remedy these economic failures. By modifying and taking corrective action now, the capitalistic economic system we already have in place can be saved. We can prevent a future catastrophic event from occurring.
The economic system is broken and no longer works for us, yet we do not want to do away with it. Rather, we want to repair it by regulating it in a practical and common-sense way, and make it ours once again; this will change the balance of the inequality equation. Our new form of EIRA provides the crowd a new way to choose its economic outcomes in a more favorable fashion aligned with its own best interests. It is a principle of choice in economic matters that allows it a greater freedom in meeting its own needs; this more sovereign position is the liberty we strive for.
Our strategy for creating this new kind of company is to provide individuals in the marketplace choice by using the EIRA; this is a democratic principle. This position will not only allow for more wealth and income to flow to the remainder of us, but will modulate the behavior of the 1% from its eventual self-destructive behavior. We want to emphasize that we do not wish to do away with capitalism. We do, however, wish to regulate and damper the ill effects of its actions by offering people choice. Through this process, we have a means to further democratize the economic landscape, generating a more equitable position for all involved.
There are a few proposed solutions being bantered about in the public domain but they have no realistic chance of being successful in changing the economic inequality landscape. These options, presented by politicians and pundits, are fractured along political and class lines. They are unrealistic and insufficient to meet the needs for true change. Their impotent views and callous indifference to suffering is providing lip-service only. In contrast, our organization presents a concrete and realistic way forward; it is by uniting with us in our endeavor that a realistic and viable change will occur for the common good.”
Until we can correct these mentioned imbalances caused by capitalism, and create a new direction of thought and action, the system will continue to be rigged, and we will continue to be crushed under the boots of the elite. The collapse of capitalism is usually caused by the wealthy creating risky laws to enhance their wealth and is the mindset as to how they operate. Whereas they may get killed in the market, many of us less fortunate literally get killed by economic collapse. Until the imbalance is rectified, it will be the same business as usual in a repetitive cycle of upward fortune followed by downward disasters. Although after each and every disaster new laws are put into place to contain the greed of the wealthy that created the disaster to begin with, these laws are quickly diluted down or repealed all together to favor the wealthy once again. What else can we expect from a legal corporate system that has a primary emphasis on fiduciary laws, that is to say, laws that mandate corporations make money for their stock holders as the basic reason for their very existence.
One has only to couple this with the Robert's Supreme Court decision "Citizens United" where Corporations are now considered People to see where this is going. It is clear the very wealthy have been manipulating the court system for the past 30 years to feather their beds. This is continuing at an unprecedented pace and the trajectory points to more and more control for the corporate elite.
A recent example we all lived through of how this one sided cycle of capitalism clearly keeps us bound in the status quo can be found in my post #31, under the major category of Economic Inequality: DONALD TRUMP and the Republican Party: Anything Goes!, Brain Structure Drives The Consequent Effects Of Economic Inequality
"Between 2009 and 2012, according to updated data from Emmanuel Saez, overall income per family grew 6.9 percent. The gains weren't shared evenly, however. The top 1 percent saw their real income grow by 34.7 percent while the bottom 99 percent only saw a 0.8 percent gain, meaning that the 1 percent captured 91 percent of all real income.
Adjusting for inflation and excluding anything made from capital gains investments like stocks, however, shows that even that small gains for all but the richest disappears. According to Justin Wolfers, adjusted average income for the 1 percent without capital gains rose from $871,100 to $968,000 in that time period. For everyone else, average income actually fell from $44,000 to $43,900. Calculated this way, the 1 percent has captured all of the income gains."
4) Fourth Basic Mechanism: The rise of the technological singularity.
The speed and power of the coming technological singularity is unprecedented in human history with its exponentially accelerating future growth predicted to dominate our future; a new approach must be implemented to counter the self-serving affects the wealthy will have upon economic inequality because of this. A new direction must be taken and that requires a new way of thinking.
My post #1 under the topic Economic Inequality: The Singularity, Pitchforks And Torches Will No Longer Be Able To Stop The 1%, expresses my sentiment of a losing battle with the wealthy as they become more and more entrenched in their control of the technology, and hence, economic inequality.
"The coming Quantum Computer Revolution with its associated subjects of the Singularity, will make it impossible to stop the 1% with the outdated mode of pitchforks and torches. The 1% will obviously own the superior computers and robotics. They will gain the ability to hide on the internet never to be caught.
It is obvious only the very rich will be able to afford the Quantum Computers ushering in the Singularity. The following are quotes I found from PC World reflect the cost of a Quantum Computer.
"D-Wave last year introduced the second-generation quantum computer called D-Wave Two which has a “list price north of $10 million,” according a research note from financial firm Sterne Agee on Wednesday. The note had a picture of a D-Wave Two with a list price of $15 million.
I have done a scientific study (Ha...just kidding) by asking my friends if any of them have the means to afford a Quantum Computer and the answer was a resounding "No." Actually, many did not even know what a quantum computer was let alone Kurzweil's concepts on the future of technology.
With access to the fastest and most sophisticated computers in conjunction with changed laws in their favor, the rich will be able to hide in the internet with their Quantum Computers making the decisions for them. We will not be able to catch-up to them as they continue to upgrade and expand their technology nor will we be able to even locate them. Just try poking a pitchfork at your computer and see what happens."
The use of cutting edge technology is unfortunately that which also has the post # 10 under the major category of Economic Inequality, then Future Concerns:Singularity, Pitchforks And Torches Will No Longer Be Able To Stop The 1%
Post by MaureenCarter » Thu Feb 08, 2018
" Talk about new technology driving the future, check this out from the Kurzweil digest. Just the idea of this kind of mind speed is blowing out the cobwebs of my synaptic connections. Just the thought of trying to out think something in the future that is 200 million times faster than my brain is making me dizzy.
Superconducting ‘synapse’ could enable powerful future neuromorphic supercomputers
February 7, 2018
Fires 200 million times faster than human brain, uses one ten-thousandth as much energy A superconducting “synapse” (switch) that “learns” like a biological system, operating like the human brain, has been built by researchers at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)
I already know what everyone is going to say; it has to be accomplished at near Absolute Zero. But it was not that long ago when the first research started looking at entangling photon pairs at Absolute Zero and today they are entangling macro size objects, like diamonds, at room temperature.
Here is the article's text:
“NIST’s artificial synapse, designed for neuromorphic computing, mimics the operation of switch between two neurons. One artificial synapse is located at the center of each X. This chip is 1 square centimeter in size. (The thick black vertical lines are electrical probes used for testing.) (credit: NIST)
A superconducting “synapse” that “learns” like a biological system, operating like the human brain, has been built by researchers at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)."
Sterling sums this up in the next post #10 when he says, "So, a possible computer with an imagination operating 200 million times faster than I can think is beyond my comprehension. If this was to ever come about then surely we outsmarted ourselves."
I build upon the time lag we will have with such computers in the race for the future in my post #6,
The Creation Of New Laws Developed From And In Response To The Coming Singularity Will Favor The Rich. This Will Create A New Class Of Inequality And Precipitate Increased Human Rights Abuse Disproportionately Upon The Poor. The Initial High Costs Of The Neurological And Technological Brain Adaptions Will Be A Major Factor Contributing To This New Form Of Inequality.
I frame this narrative with the following two prominent sub-mechanisms:
A. Legal and Regulatory Lag time:
“Unfortunately, because the creation of new laws is mostly based upon past actions, it almost always lags behind technological developments. As we draw closer to the Singularity, this time differential between past actions and the creation of new laws may very well decrease due to new technology in the legal arena itself. But overall, in absolute terms, it will take more time to develop these laws. This is because the new laws will need to be developed in some ratio to the exponentially accelerating new technology being developed. One can envision a legal system not capable of keeping up with the dizzying array of new social implications needing regulation and control. Of course there will be technological developments in the legal arena itself to aid in the processing of this technological onslaught. But one can see a scenario where even the new legal technology will be overwhelmed at some point. With an absolute increase in time needed to process the new technology, forms of human rights abuse will multiply against those individuals least capable of defending themselves.”
B. Inability of Poor to Integrate With The New High-Priced Technology:
“Perhaps worse yet, the initial inability of the poor to merge with the new technology due to prohibitive costs will create a new form of inequality; it is an inequality of technological fitness. In contrast, those who can afford to be integrated and augmented with the new high priced technology will transcend a mere biological survival of the fittest to a new form of survival whereby the most technologically integrated individuals become the most fit. This is regardless of their genetic background. Moreover, because the new laws will favor those at the top of the economic pyramid, those at the base will be subject to more crushing human rights abuses than those at the top even if it is just periods of time. And granted, the unit price of the technology will eventually come down as it did with computers and cell phones, but it still makes opportunities ripe for abuse during these transition periods. Still, there may be unforeseen consequences not matching past behaviors that could also propagate abuse. Like the stock market, past behavior may no longer be predictive of future events. If we are really changing neuronal behaviors, will our old models of predicting future behavior hold up in the new reality?”
Three Technological Revolutions Which Will Define The Future:
From: Ray Kurzweil Predicts Three Technologies Will Define Our Future By Sveta McShane and Jason Dorrier Written Apr 19, 2016 This is the last in a four-part series looking at the big ideas in Ray Kurzweil's book " The Singularity Is Near."
Of all the technologies riding the wave of exponential progress, Kurzweil identifies genetics, nanotechnology, and robotics as the three overlapping revolutions which will define our lives in the decades to come. In what ways are these technologies revolutionary?
The genetics revolution will allow us to reprogram our own biology.
The nanotechnology revolution will allow us to manipulate matter at the molecular and atomic scale.
The robotics revolution will allow us to create a greater than human non-biological intelligence.
“Once again, the most fit, now meaning those individuals who can afford the new technologies, are more likely to survive and one can bet their last dollar that some form of a predator to prey relationship will evolve between the unequal economic classes.
A new direction of thought and action created by the technological singularity will require a new direction of thought and action on our part to survive in this new reality. I continue on to share by stating,
“Let there be no doubt, the single most important aspect we are really battling for here is to control the future—our future—for the good of the whole. Will we control it or let the wealthy elite control our destiny? Make no mistake; what happens here will determine the outcome of humanity. Whoever controls the Singularity will control the future—will it be us or them?
Regarding the words, "Whoever controls the Singularity will control the future", the word ‘control’ implies some form of active intent. One only has to look at the modern day corporate players such as Apple, Google, Amazon, Microsoft, and other key players at the top of the corporate pyramid to see the level of active control they employ to promote their interests. Their intent is for world domination at least realistically in their respective fields to control the future. They actively appropriate large amounts of capital and talent to ensure their growth marches lockstep with a corporate fiduciary duty regarding such matters for their shareholders. This is an active intent to control the future.”
The afore-mentioned powerful mechanisms and sub-mechanisms, although not exhaustive in scope and breadth as there are many more mechanisms, are too much for us to surmount and we will be conquered and eventually destroyed by the elite's economic inequality unless we begin to think and act differently.
By way of example, Janebird21 ends her post in the work I am referencing with a sequence of what if? Statements:
“Instead of welfare programs, what if policymakers looked at fair taxes and wealth distribution? What if that 1% paid their share of taxes and this was redistributed? What would the human race look like and what doors would open to us if we could change all the brains of a population for the better? What if wealth redistribution was the catalyst for the next step in human evolution?”
I replied to her post with my own post #28:
“Unfortunately these questions are based upon the same old rigid thoughts and actions that have gotten us into the predicament we find ourselves in today. They permeate the liberal mindset. Although they are compassionate and noble, they are nonetheless antiquated and ineffectual. Rather, I present the following set of “what if statements” as a guiding light to get at and solve the root cause of the problem:
1) What if everyone was to recognize economic inequality as the real problem at hand and not the fractured and disparate set of problems individuals and organizations are currently trying to solve?
2) What if all of these various individuals and organizations were to shift the focus of their attention and resources to solving the problem of economic inequality as a bold first unified step towards answering our common threat?
3) What if everyone in the 99% was to actively support the development and implementation of the EIRA?
We now have the choice of creating a fair and just world for ourselves, or experiencing Orwell's boot in our collective face,
"If you want a vision of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face - forever." George Orwell
We are our own worst enemy when we allow these antiquated mechanisms to control our lives. The old rules of activism must be supplanted with a new mindset. The clock is ticking. Wake up and embrace a more advanced activism; rise up to the power of FirstRateCrowd's EIRA.”
This is a case for why the old form or structure of activism no longer works to stop the wealthy elite conservatives from continually winning the battle to subjugate the less fortunate through economic inequality.
From the website we find that economic inequality is being exacerbated by conservative policy to our detriment.
Many people still erroneously believe that just by increasing a country's wealth (GDP), this will somehow automatically decrease the negative aspects of their society's problems. The following will explain the counter-intuitive impact of economic inequality upon the problems of health and society. This speaks to the very core of the matter; economic inequality is harmful.
In developed, affluent nations, it is the relative economic inequality between members of that population that drive consequent, negative biopsychosocial effects upon that population—it is not the overall wealth of the nation. This is the paradox: wealth does not necessarily equate to reducing the problems of health and societal ills. To the contrary, it serves to exacerbate them. Simply put, a very wealthy nation—such as the USA, with a very high Gross Domestic Product (GDP)—can nonetheless possess an extreme range of economic inequality among its citizens. Such vast economic disparity inherently results in a profoundly negative interplay of biologic, psychological, and social influences within that nation. Conversely, in a more economically modest nation, if there is a narrower range of economic inequality, then there is a lessening of such negative biopsychosocial effects. This is because the wealth is distributed more evenly in the latter case.
The greater the economic inequality that exists within a nation, the greater the gradient between the rich and the poor that exists—and it is this gradient that creates the damage. It is a negative biopsychosocial effect that creates the injurious outcomes—the greater the economic inequality within a nation, the greater the grave health and social problems that society will suffer. An individual's standing in the socioeconomic hierarchy creates the dire ill effects caused by economic inequality. For this reason, merely increasing the wealth of a nation will not reduce many of the social ills which plague its citizens. It is the redistribution of the wealth within a nation that decreases economic inequality and, consequently, provides relief to many of the health and social ills.
From the website, we also find a more complete listing of the negative impact of economic inequality based upon the research:
- Wars (increased)
- Terrorism (increased)
- Life expectancy (decreased)
- Math and literacy (decreased)
- Climate change (increased)
- Infant mortality (increased)
- Homicides (increased)
- Imprisonment (increased)
- Teenage births (increased)
- Trust (decreased)
- Obesity (increased)
- Mental illness (increased)
- Drug addiction (increased)
- Alcoholism (increased)
- Social and work mobility (decreased)
- Impact of money in politics (increased)
- Pollution (increased)
- Women's rights (decreased)
- Racism (increased)
- Food Insecurity (increased)
- Loneliness (increased)
The above factors, all related to economic inequality, engulf such an expansive range of deleterious effects upon humanity that the mind at first glance questions their validity. It bewilders and stuns us to such a large extent that we necessarily ask ourselves, "Can this really be true?"
To ease the mind's¬ doubts that this phenomenon is real and substantive, here is a link to Richard Wilkinson's video on economic inequality and its impact upon society. The video substantiates the thought process. It is based upon the scientific research which validates what is clearly presented before us; economic inequality is the problem at hand and until it is eliminated it will continue to do us harm. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ndh58GGCTQo
To further substantiate the grim reality about economic inequality upon us, I present my post # 24 as to economic inequality's causative nature. In other words, the factors listed are not just expressed in our society as mere correlations, but rather as being the cause of the problem.
Re: FirstRateCrowd's EIRA
Post by Doctor A » Fri Apr 19, 2019
Will the EIRA work as predicted to stop inequality? With regards to health outcomes, research indicates economic inequality is a causative factor and not just a correlation in nature. In other words, if we can decrease economic inequality within a country then we can substantially reduce its harmful effects upon that country's health.
Paramount to the above question, and to any research, is the concept of correlation vs causation. Here is a short video explaining the view needed to show causation and not just correlation:
The research team of Pickett and Wilkinson present an excellent research article indicating that the connection between economic inequality and health is causative. The research team of Pickett and Wilkinson present an excellent research article indicating that the connection between economic inequality and health is causative.
From: AHRQ--Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality: Advancing Excellence in Health Care Population Health: Behavioral and Social Science Insights Income Inequality and Health: A Causal Review
Here is the abstract of their work:
"There is a very large literature examining income inequality in relation to health. Early reviews came to different interpretations of the evidence, though a large majority of studies reported that health tended to be worse in more unequal societies. More recent studies, not included in those reviews, provide substantial new evidence. Our purpose in this chapter is to assess whether or not wider income differences play a causal role leading to worse health. We conducted a literature review within an epidemiological causal framework and inferred the likelihood of a causal relationship between income inequality and health (including violence) by considering the evidence as a whole. The body of evidence strongly suggests that income inequality affects population health and well-being. The major causal criteria of temporality, biological plausibility, consistency, and lack of alternative explanations are well supported. Of the small minority of studies that found no association, most can be explained by income inequality being measured at an inappropriate scale, the inclusion of mediating variables as controls, use of subjective rather than objective measures of health, or followup periods that were too short. The evidence that large income differences have damaging health and social consequences is strong, and in most countries, inequality is increasing. Narrowing the gap will improve the health and well-being of populations."
I think non-health outcomes due to economic inequality, such as climate change, women's rights, the effects of money in politics, etc, are detrimental to society but need to be looked at independently for now regarding causation. However, regarding the EIRA's ability to transfer wealth from the 1% back to the 99%, should it function as described in this website, the reduced economic inequality will evoke a causative response by significantly reducing negative health outcomes.
As a recap, due to a fear based brain structure, the wealthy elite are creating a harmful and indefensible situation for the 99% either directly or indirectly through the four mechanisms I presented to you previously and ultimately through economic inequality. This inequality is a known causative agent which directly and intimately creates a situation so evil and abhorrent that it is literally putting humanity on the brink of destruction.
The EIRA is a proposed mechanism that can free us from the bondage imposed upon society by conservative ideology. In fact, it will not just stop the manmade economic inequality that conservatives created but can turn the tide in restoring us to liberal and progressive thought for the betterment of humanity
The idea for an EIRA, as presented on the website, can change this manmade suffering for the better without changing any laws, writing new tax codes, or voting anyone into office. The heart of the mechanism is based upon reducing economic inequality and is void of affiliation with social value systems. Most economic inequality stems from conservative ideology which is toxic to both individuals and society. This toxicity can be countered by reducing economic inequality, a subconscious parameter, through the use of the EIRA. The basics idea is as follows:
Section One-The General Concept
FirstRateCrowd has developed an idea for the EIRA for handheld or other uses. This will essentially become a way to economically boycott select aspects the 1%. The EIRA will provide clear guidelines as to which products and services, or which individuals providing these products or services, are aligned with the 99%-Crowd in contrast to those aligned with the 1%. By following these ratings, the 99% can not only capture the revenue normally lost to the 1% through economic inequality, but also redirect this revenue back to themselves.
This technology will make economic choices in support of the 99% simple and convenient to use; individuals can then change the economic equation back in favor of the 99%. This freedom of choice in the marketplace completely bypasses the usual political, tax, and judicial gridlock by placing the power directly back into the hands of the 99% to decrease economic inequality.
By way of example, if a product such as a computer is produced by a company with a high Inequality Rating, then we know the company producing the item is more aligned with the 1%. This purchase should be boycotted in favor of a computer produced by another company with a lower Inequality Rating. Given the choice of purchase between the two different computers of similar design, color, durability, and price, the computer with the lower Inequality Rating should be chosen; this decision favors the well-being of the 99%. If one financial institution is to be chosen over another with similar services and value, then the one with a lower Inequality Rating is more in line with the 99% and should be chosen. Moreover, an individual in a position to influence an economic decision, but with a high Inequality Rating, as expressed by their views and actions, should be discarded in favor of an individual who supports the 99%. In all cases, we are looking at economic inequality which is a subconscious process, and not at social values, which are thought derived.
Here is a very short 2 minute video explaining the app once it is fully developed.
Although this video explains the concept using inexpensive items such as two paint brushes, initially high price items will be used such as computers and cars to alter the inequality equation. This will produce the largest transfer of wealth back to the 99% in the shortest period of time.
Here are some initial thoughts from the FirstRateCrowd’s Fight Inequality website on the app's development and application:
"What would happen if those of us in the 99% in the USA actually had this app?" "It would mean we could transfer billions of dollars back to the 99% in short order." Then my thoughts leapt to, "What if everyone in the 99% around the world had this app?" "It would mean we could rapidly transfer trillions of dollars that would normally go to the 1% back to the 99%."
Section Two-Specific Attributes Needed
There are many various attributes related to economic inequality needed to be included in the app's development in order to create such a rating system: This included information related to the identity of the manufacturer (or in the case of a service, the identity of the service provider), the price of the entity, the country of origin, associated organizations, associated individuals, and the profit margin associated with the entity.
Still, there are confounding variables to consider such as supply chain issues and those of manufacturing origination. For example, many times a product can be made by a manufacturer but the manufacturer also is a part of a larger and different named company actually sponsoring the product. Each of these companies has its own set of attributes that must be weighed into the decision making equation. Finally, when the product does end up in a brick & mortar showroom promoting the product or a catalogue, this is many times through a third party company which must also be factored into the mix.
Other variables to be considered soon arose: How "green" is the company, what is the salary of the CEO relative to the line worker, what is the actual corporate structure of the organization and its level of inclusiveness to worker concerns and profit sharing. I also considered the direction of their lobbying activities, lawsuit involvement, and philanthropic activities, (both truly helpful or a veneer for advertisement as a smokescreen to offset other negative publicity.)
Overall I realize that companies are not islands unto themselves and this affects their ultimate impact upon the planet. With respect to the Robert's Court and the United States Supreme Court decision of Citizens United v. FEC (2010) where corporations are now considered people and thus are allowed to support political campaigns, I suspect the public will demand a large amount of social and environmental accountability of our newly anthropomorphized corporation brethren.
How would the final inequality score be weighted and how it would be changed in a timely manner should a company change their behavior for the better or for the worse? In other words, it would need to be a flexible and responsive system.
The inequality rating attributes mentioned above are merely exemplary. I am sure others will have their own view as to what should be included to formulate the final rating. Essentially any other attribute-whether different from or additional to those I listed-could be considered in an overall analysis.
Section Three-The Need for Rating Specialists
Although in theory any individual could rate any product or service based upon their own internal compass, in practice it is more likely, and arguably would be much more useful, to have "specialists" in various areas provide the data for such a decision. Examples of such specialists may include economists, business reporters, business researchers, college academicians, social researchers, work standard bureaus, and a multitude of other appropriately qualified individuals that will feed their information to a host platform to generate the final inequality rating.
Guidelines can be set up by these specialists as to what weight to give the manufacturer, associated organizations, and associated individuals or other aspects of the rating. These guidelines will include the editing and changing of ratings overtime as the variables change. This includes weighing attributes by those individuals in the 1% who are supportive of the 99% in a more favorable light than those hostile to our cause as long as this analysis is truly based upon economic inequality and not just verbal window dressing.
Section Four: How It Works
Members of the general public often narrow down their buying choices to several options before making a final decision. This is especially true for large ticket items such as cars, homes or computers. We usually do this by visiting a store and asking questions of a sales person there or by consulting other sources of available information first. The sales people (or other informational sources) can generally provide descriptive information about products or services themselves. But typically they do not provide information useful in making inequality rating decisions (e.g., identity of the real manufacturing chain, country of origin where the majority of profits will be allocated to, associated individuals and their ethical practices, profit margin, CEO's salary to average worker ratio, etc.). Consequently, a consumer desiring to take into account an entity's inequality rating will not ordinarily have sufficient information available to them. To the contrary, access to this information is severely limited or entirely absent.
This is where the handheld EIRA comes in. Imagine a consumer desiring to purchase a high end computer who wants to first narrow down his or her selection to two different options. Before making a decision, the consumer typically will consult a variety of informational sources such as Consumer Reports journal, specific trade magazines, a rating website, or the like. We have all been here before. Assume further that all the available information reveals the two computers options have roughly the same features, quality, styling, price, and other decision making criteria important to the consumer. Consequently, the consumer's ultimate decision may be efficient relative to their personal needs but severely insufficient and arbitrary relative to the economic inequality rating of the given purchase. The next step beyond the immediate issue of the best price, is if this purchase will benefit the 1% or the general population. Will it contribute to economic inequality or help reduce it?
But the EIRA, which gives inequality ratings scores to the two different computer options, will provide the consumer with important critical information derived from a database based upon sophisticated expert input. This will immediately make available to the consumer which of the two products or service computer options better supports the 99% compared to the 1%. The lower the rating, the less inequality the product will create. We embrace the product which creates the least amount of economic inequality regardless of its social value.
Everything considered this dizzying array of complexity and opaqueness can be distilled down to just one number on a scale of zero to I00 for any product or service comparison with an EIRA. The consumer then has an easy, convenient, and accurate method to make an informed economic decision. A lower numbered product or service will be rewarded with our purchase and those with a higher number will be shunned. It is a guaranteed method whereby those of us in the 99% can exert our collective power over those in the 1% for our own benefit.
Obstacles To Implementing The EIRA: This guide will not be complete unless we also know the limits to implementing the EIRA
Here are some of the obstacles we face from my post #25
Re: FirstRateCrowd's EIRA
Post by Doctor A » Sun Apr 21, 2019 4:47 pm
Here is my list of major factors that can significantly impact and prevent the Economic Inequality Rating App project from working as predicted. Areas of concern include the future of Democracy, time restrictions due to the technological singularity, the portion of the 99% that will actually use the app, resistance due to social value systems, the high initial startup and development costs, push back from the 1% and Artificial Super Intelligence. In my opinion, all of these events are possible threats and need to be managed either now or in the future
1) The app will need a Democracy to work because authoritarian regimes will not allow it on the internet. Autocrats are usually supported by wealthy Oligarchs and Kleptocrats who would suffer financially from the EIRA. It certainly is not in their best interest.
Currently, the USA is no longer a full Democracy and with Trump we can easily slide into the wrong direction. I too was surprised by this news.
From: Post #27 under New age slavery on the website by Jessica, Fri Aug 31, 2018
The USA is no longer classified as a "full democracy" and is now rated as a "flawed democracy." We need democracy to support a free and vibrant internet to fight against authoritarian rule and for the Economic Inequality Rating App to flourish.
I watched Fareed Zakaria's video below and was shocked to see the USA is no longer classified as a full Democracy as rated by the Democracy Index. I assumed like most people we were a full Democracy and did not know of the tarnished ranking. This is important because the Economic Inequality Rating App (EIRA) needs Democratic countries to be most effective.
Sterling calls it correctly when he states in his post #22 under New Age Slavery,
"Can you read the handwriting on the wall or do you need a rifle barrel poked into your ribs to get the point. The world is drinking the poisoned Kool Aid of authoritarianism which derives its power from a loss of democracy and inequality. Take note, authoritarianism and inequality are the very bedrock of slavery. Say goodbye to your freedoms unless you are willing to fight for them."
To drive this concept home, Fareed Zakaria presents a global view on the demise of Democracy
Wikipedia: The Democracy Index is an index compiled by the UK-based company the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) that intends to measure the state of Democracy in 167 countries https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Democracy ... try_(2017)
Hand in hand with this declining Democracy around the world and in the USA is the decline of a free internet needed to support the app.
2) Time restrictions due to the shortening time frame imposed by the advancing technological singularity.
I have been asked, "Is there still time for the EIRA to become a success with the looming technological singularity?" I believe the answer is yes, there is still time to accomplish our goal of stopping economic inequality with the app. By 2029, about 9 years from now, it is estimated Artificial Intelligence will be on par with the adult human wet brain. Sometime after that, with estimates of 2045 to 2049, the full effects of the technological singularity will be known. So, I think a window of opportunity of at least 9 years plus a number of more years exist depending upon the speed of the developing singularity. This is sufficient time for the app to be successful in moderating the direction the technological singularity takes.
3) Will individual be able to transcend their own individual value systems and select the item or company with the lowest EIRA score?
Once again people will need to transcend their social values. If given a choice of near certain death or a future world within the technological singularity so twisted and perverted from the reality as we know it today, I think they can be persuaded to make the right choice.
4) The initial cost to set up this project is high. But in comparison to what the consequences would be due to not setting up the project, this is minuscule. I estimate to set up the app for near full development would cost about $100 million. Out of this amount, creating the database and the advertisement will be the most costly items. The app technology itself for hand held use is already state of the art and can be readily purchased or developed.
5) Push back is expected from the 1% as they will fight tooth and nail to stop this transfer of wealth. But a concerted effort by the 99% can counter their power. After all, their very existence as the rich is dependent upon the rest of us.
6) Artificial Super Intelligence (ASI) goes beyond just the mimicking of human thought and creates a world in which a computer's cognitive ability is superior to a human's. It is well acknowledged by experts that whoever creates this system first will control all the other advanced computer systems and hence the world. This is because who ever reaches ASI first will have an extreme advantage over all other systems given the exponential nature of their existence.
This obviously lends itself to many secret research projects working towards this goal around the world. We must support the United States in its endeavor to become the first to finish this race. At least, even though secret, congressional oversight will be utilized and from my view there is less likely the chance of a tyrannical government producing a SAI tyrannical computer.
My hope is that other members on the site will give a critical review of these six basic hindrances to the successful implementation of the EIRA. Moreover, any other additional overlooked obstructive processes not mentioned above are most welcome so we can assess their impact.
Some may see the EIRA solution as unrealistic, a tilting at windmills especially considering the immensity of the task. But doing nothing or merely carrying on with the status quo will certainly seal our fate. Rather there needs to be action of great intensity and force to stop the negative outcomes of the technological singularity or we will suffer the inevitable consequences. Waiting for storm clouds to form on the horizon or a catastrophic event to occur may prove to be too late. In all seriousness, the EIRA needs to be implemented now.
WEBSITE USER NOTE: REPLY POSTS TO THIS MATERIAL ARE FOUND ON THE HOME PAGE UNDER, 5. Economic Inequality Rating App (EIRA), FirstRateCrowd's EIRA, starting with post # 22