If some machines are going to improve this or that, well that's great but who's going to work? Who is going to waste his life working in factory?
Small community workshops could replace factories if consumerism was abandoned as an economic system. Without the endless production of goods which are purposely designed to become obsolete or 'unfashionable' much could be achieved with very short working hours. In any case, more than 50% of jobs today are in the service industries. Recycling of metals and plastics can be done effectively with very simple technology. These alternatives are viable today.
It's a tragedy that so many people are too brainwashed by the mass media to realise that a golden age could be created within one or two lifetimes. I truly believe there would be less depression, emotional illness, psychosis, cancer and other degenerative lifestyle illnesses if our highly competitive economic system was replaced with a network of small, autonomous communities that only needed to trade essential commodities with each other.
Nothing new has to be invented except a different way of organizing the socio-economic system. The kibbutz system thrives in Israel, even though their nation is an aggressor towards neighbouring Palestine (stealing thier land).
I think there would still have to be a global system of justice to prevent armed conflict or the exploitation of one group by another. Even primitive hunter gatherer societies indulged in tribal warfare -- unless all the anthropologists who studied them in the 19th and 20th century were lying.
I mostly agree with the above statement (except for the statement that Israel is the aggressor. We can agree to disagree on that).
The reality is that with globalization things are moving in the opposite direction. Instead of moving towards small self-sustaining communities, we?re moving towards more and more of the wealth, power and resources being concentrated into the hands of a very few. Perhaps 1 or 2% of the population benefits from globalization. For everyone else it?s a bum deal.
I could go on and on about the situation here in the USA. The middle class is losing ground economically, plus more job insecurity with the constant threat of jobs being sent to Mexico, China, India, or where-ever they can get people to work for slave wages. It?s worse for those economically below that with the influx of cheap illegal labor driving down wages. It?s a race to the bottom.
I remember reading in one of Janov?s books (I don?t know which one) that it really doesn?t matter what type of system we live in; democracy. dictatorship, socialism, etc, neurotic people will screw it up. That?s not an exact quote but you can get the idea. The powers that be are pushing the world towards a type of super capitalism. It?s impossible to go threw the day without being bombarded with it (consumerism). Democracy is pretty much dead on it?s feet here in the USA.
I think the idea of trying to head this off are slim. The type of people with power are almost always the aggressive controlling type. Having gone through primaling I have some understanding of the forces that are driving these people. They?re not going to wake up one morning with some type of self-enlightenment and give it all up.
I?m not completely pessimistic. The last few years has brought about progressive talk radio here,
It can be very good at times. There are people out there who are aware of what?s going on.
Things will change. The current pace of Consumerism is is unsustainable. If nothing else global warming will put a real crimp on things.