“By relying primarily on voluntary co-operation and private enterprise, in both economic and other activities, we can insure that the private sector is a check on the powers of the governmental sector and an effective protection of freedom of speech, of religion, and of thought.”
– Milton Friedman, Capitalism and Freedom
As easy as it is to point our all of the problems with contemporary capitalism, it is more essential to propose solutions to them. This is exactly the purpose of ABC2 Economics. But ABC2 Economics is not the solution, only part of it.
A few years ago, I had the pleasure to meet Charles Eisenstein. I was about halfway through reading Sacred Economics at the time. He was passing through town and had agreed to stop and have lunch with a few people from Transition Sarasota.
I gave him a quick pitch on the idea behind ABC2 Economics, but to my dismay, he didn’t take to the idea as excitedly as I’d hoped. Instead, he told me that he believed that the days of movements led by one person, like Facebook or Microsoft, were over. From here on out, collaboration would be key.
To be honest, I don’t really consider ABC2 Economics to be my idea. I just looked at what society’s been doing for the last ten thousand years and tried to find some semblance of agreement and balance. There is a good chance that I’ve never had an original thought in my head, I just rehash what I experience in interesting ways.
That said, I do agree that there are a variety of things that are going to work together to help us through the crises of our crumbling economic system. Fortunately, we have many auspicious realizations that can assist us in solving the problems we face.
For a person of true faith, or even someone with high hopes, it might even seem to be that for every problem we seem to have, life has also provided the tools we need to overcome it. How we utilize our advantages will be a deciding factor in whether this generation will develop a Renaissance or Dark Age. Let’s look at some of the possibilities that face us, which could allow us to prosper rather than break down.
- Communication devices have created a global economy and a networked populace more connected than any previous time in known human history.
- The rise of networked society and social media offers endless opportunities for organization and communication, despite the plethora of abuses and misuses throughout it.
- Open source technologies have developed new means for collaborative ventures and the sharing economy.
- The proliferation of new crypto and complementary currencies offers many new avenues for people to achieve well-being that is not dependent upon the waning financial structures of hierarchies and indebtedness.
- Advancements in transactional technologies like blockchain now provide the opportunity for near-instantaneous transfers of money, information, and other currencies, including regularly scheduled microtransactions.
- More than 50% of the population is expected to be a freelancer by the year 2027, empowering a generation to focus their energies into purpose and good service rather than mere employment in meaningless jobs.
- Ranked-choice/instant-runoff voting has started to be used in statewide elections in Maine and New York City and could be used to drastically improve the political process throughout the country by ultimately overcoming the limitations of the two party system.
- Despite the adherence to fossil-fuel industries, development of renewable resources, alternative energy, and green technology continues to advance around the world.
- A growing consciousness has empowered a broader world view and a renewed spiritual connection, beyond the doctrines and dogmas of religion.
- The breakdown of traditional values and religions have left many seeking greater purpose through a new, more participatory mythology.
We have a lot of things going for us now that did not exist in the 17th century, when capitalism had its start. As a matter of fact, many of the things we take for granted today couldn’t have even been dreamed of by the founders of our country and framers of the US Constitution. We should bear that in mind as we move forward, releasing some of the limitations that have been programmed into the system we’re serving.
If nothing else, we need to recognize the internet for the game changer that it really is. For although it has allowed capitalism to thrive by enabling the dotcom boom and bust, as well as building up some of the largest corporations ever known to man, the internet has also empowered the sharing economy and given people access to all sorts of goods, services, and information for free. If capitalism weren’t held in such high esteem, perhaps it could do even more.
This is an excerpt from the book Steve McAlphabet Explains ABC Squared Economics. Go to https://stevemc.xyz/books/steve-mcalphabet-explains-abc-squared-economics/ to find out more.