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Explain to me the Zeitgeist movement...





ocalhoun
I've been hearing about this Zeitgeist movement for a while, but have been unable to pin down exactly what it is about...
The only specific thing I seem to be able to learn about it is that it considers money* to be a major problem.


So, what exactly is this Zeitgeist movement about, and how is it different/better than good 'ol anarchism?



*Not greed or wealth, apparently the very concept of currency itself...
deanhills
There have been a few threads touching on Zeitgeist:

http://www.frihost.com/forums/vt-117509.html#967832
http://www.frihost.com/forums/vt-119363.html#983435
http://www.frihost.com/forums/vt-87187.html#726682

Best source for a short and straight answer what it is about is Jacque Fresco in his "archived" Website. Sounds like a Project that should be right up your street, in fact, I'm sure you would be able to improve on it:
Quote:
Experience tells us that human behavior can be modified, either toward constructive or destructive activity. This is what The Venus Project is all about - directing our technology and resources toward the positive, for the maximum benefit of people and planet and seeking out new ways of thinking and living that emphasize and celebrate the vast potential of the human spirit. We have the tools at hand to design - and build - a future that is worthy of the human potential. The Venus Project presents a bold, new direction for humanity that entails nothing less than the total redesign of our culture. What follows is not an attempt to predict what will be done - only what could be done. The responsibility for our future is in our hands, and depends on the decisions that we make today. The greatest resource that is available today is our own ingenuity.


This is the part about the economy where it is suggested to do away with the monetary system:
Quote:
A Resource-Based Economy is a system in which all goods and services are available without the use of money, credits, barter or any other system of debt or servitude. All resources become the common heritage of all of the inhabitants, not just a select few. The premise upon which this system is based is that the Earth is abundant with plentiful resource; our practice of rationing resources through monetary methods is irrelevant and counter productive to our survival.

Modern society has access to highly advanced technology and can make available food, clothing, housing and medical care; update our educational system; and develop a limitless supply of renewable, non-contaminating energy. By supplying an efficiently designed economy, everyone can enjoy a very high standard of living with all of the amenities of a high technological society.

A resource-based economy would utilize existing resources from the land and sea, physical equipment, industrial plants, etc. to enhance the lives of the total population. In an economy based on resources rather than money, we could easily produce all of the necessities of life and provide a high standard of living for all.
ocalhoun
Will be going through the links later, but for now...

deanhills wrote:

Best source for a short and straight answer what it is about is Jacque Fresco in his "archived" Website. Sounds like a Project that should be right up your street, in fact, I'm sure you would be able to improve on it:
Quote:
Experience tells us that human behavior can be modified, either toward constructive or destructive activity. This is what The Venus Project is all about - directing our technology and resources toward the positive, for the maximum benefit of people and planet and seeking out new ways of thinking and living that emphasize and celebrate the vast potential of the human spirit. We have the tools at hand to design - and build - a future that is worthy of the human potential. The Venus Project presents a bold, new direction for humanity that entails nothing less than the total redesign of our culture. What follows is not an attempt to predict what will be done - only what could be done. The responsibility for our future is in our hands, and depends on the decisions that we make today. The greatest resource that is available today is our own ingenuity.


Sounds all very well and good, but is extremely vague about how this is to be accomplished.
Quote:

Quote:
A Resource-Based Economy is a system in which all goods and services are available without the use of money, credits, barter or any other system of debt or servitude. All resources become the common heritage of all of the inhabitants, not just a select few. The premise upon which this system is based is that the Earth is abundant with plentiful resource; our practice of rationing resources through monetary methods is irrelevant and counter productive to our survival.

Modern society has access to highly advanced technology and can make available food, clothing, housing and medical care; update our educational system; and develop a limitless supply of renewable, non-contaminating energy. By supplying an efficiently designed economy, everyone can enjoy a very high standard of living with all of the amenities of a high technological society.

A resource-based economy would utilize existing resources from the land and sea, physical equipment, industrial plants, etc. to enhance the lives of the total population. In an economy based on resources rather than money, we could easily produce all of the necessities of life and provide a high standard of living for all.

Ah, so it's just (pure) communism by another name, then?
The 'efficiently designed economy' in particular brings back some unpleasant echoes from about a century ago...
It's a fine theory, but in practice, there are cases of scarce resources... Not basic necessities (not yet anyway), but there are many resources that aren't plentiful enough for everybody to have some... Which necessitates some mechanism to decide who gets it and who doesn't. (The only alternative being to let nobody have it, which is hardly for the greater good...)
Communism of old would have state bureaucracy be this mechanism... Is Zeitgeist any different?
-- Don't get me wrong... some flavors of anarchism (which I happen to be partial to) use redefining ownership and possession to achieve a similar economic model... I'm just very wary of the (historically proven) potential problems that ensue from placing a state apparatus in charge of the system.

That gives a pretty good idea of what their ideal for an economy would be, but how would they structure politics? ... In other words,I see how they would distribute resources, but how would they distribute power and authority?
deanhills
ocalhoun wrote:
That gives a pretty good idea of what their ideal for an economy would be, but how would they structure politics? ... In other words,I see how they would distribute resources, but how would they distribute power and authority?
As far as I can see this movement made a movie, and then it went quiet, and the Website has been archived. So who knows, maybe it was a group of intelligentsia who had lots of money and they have run out of the money.

I don't think I would call it communism however, more like socialist humanism.
Navigator
Zeitgeist was OK until the end, when everything got spoiled trying to impose a particular view.
loremar
Sounds like Einstein's kind of movement. But Einstein is no Einstein when it comes to something like this. Smile
gandalfthegrey
The Zeitgeist Movement is a naive cult made up of fanatics who think technology can solve all our problems. I believe they used to be called 'Technocrats' in the 1920s and 1930s. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Technocracy_movement

I just think of all the cancers that technology and chemicals have spread in our world and I realize that technology is a doubled-edged sword, one with mixed blessings.

The Zeitgeist Movement is not consistent in what it believes, and it has changed from the first Zeitgeist movie, to the recent removal of The Venus Project from the actual movement.

Many experts now recognize it as resembling a cult. The group Anonymous (known to have protested The Church of Scientology) are now taking on The Zeitgeist Movement. In some cities, they have even taken up to living in houses of twelve or more people.

I would not call them anarchists at all. They have no connection with the anarchist movement. They more closely resemble communism, because of the excessive controls they have proposed by putting technology and computers in charge to make decisions. However, they reject the label of communism because of the negative image it has in North America.
gandalfthegrey
Also, the idea of The Venus Project is not a new or original idea. Many others have attempted such efforts, such as architect Paolo Soleri's Arcosanti. http://www.arcosanti.org/
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