The Root of the Problem

In meandering through the jungle of the interwebz (a series of tubes), one can clearly see that the din of commentary is chattering incessantly about what’s wrong with the world. Well meaning intelligent people write their opinions, offer their evidence and proclaim their suggestions.

I recently read A Radically Beneficial World: Automation, Technology and Creating Jobs for All: The Future Belongs to Work That Is Meaningful, the courageous book by Charles Hugh Smith about his solution with his very well made points, especially about the structure of implementing money. I highly recommend this book if you’re at all interested in novel thinking. It is a good set of thoughts. Although I think Mr. Smith has some great points and ideas, he presents his solution as a root solution that he believes will solve larger problems and I must disagree.  He claims his system would solve the majority of problems he sees.  I assert it would not.

I’ve recently come to realize just how prevalent this kind of misunderstanding of  the root problems are – nearly all voices around us focus on a particular process or structural primitive and believe that changing it will fix the root problems.  I assert that unless you fix the root problem, none of the emergent problems will be solved completely.

In order to understand this, I must define the root problem.

The Root Problem

In my view, the root of the problem is this: Human brains are not well suited to the environments they live in. The more intelligent humans have learned enough about this disparity to manipulate the masses in order to gain advantage. This results in massive levels of corruption.

To grasp this, one must understand the evolution and current functioning of the human brain. Evolution works very, very slowly – on scales of 10’s of thousands or hundreds of thousands of years between meaningful mutations. For example, the mutation that enabled high level speech (FOXP2) is thought to have occurred at least 10’s of thousands of years ago and perhaps several hundred thousand years ago. Beneficial mutations are incredibly infrequent, so adaptation takes a very long time.

It has been only 12,000 years since humans started to settle down, store food and domesticate animals (see Gobekli Tepe.) Our brains are essentially identical to the brains of hunter gatherers who lived before this period. Our brains evolved very slowly over time to adapt to our environment. Our brains are well suited to an environment where any stranger we met was almost always an enemy. We knew everyone we interacted with for our entire lives (or theirs.) Life was simple – technology meant learning to make hand axes, spears, rudimentary temporary shelter, clothing, and beads that might impress a mate. These are something everyone can do and do not require specialization. In this early environment, corruption was not rampant because our brains were well suited for our environment and human behavior was relatively optimal to deal with the problems that arose. Anyone could help solve anyone else’s problems.

Modern technology has changed man’s environment to a degree which leaves it almost unrecognizable in comparison. We live in cities with millions of people who have few friends. Organizations with hierarchical structure wield massive decision-making power. The new environment contains so much information that no man, no matter how intelligent, has even a tiny fraction of the mental capacity to understand. This opens up the fact that deception has become a common strategy to gain advantage over others. The corruption can be much more easily hidden in this modern environment.

In the past, decisions were simpler. If a decision were being made that individuals disagreed with, it was obvious at the moment that decision was being made. Objections could be (and were) easily voiced. Conflicts could be resolved on a transparent and social basis so as to minimize damage to the social group as a whole. The social groups were small enough that everyone understood what was at stake – or at least enough of it to not cause serious differentials in power.

With modern social structures, nearly all of the information involved in decisions can be (and is) hidden from nearly all of those involved with or affected by the decision. This enables the powerful to easily hide corrupt decision-making processes and make false claims about what is going on. The ignorant are easily deceived because the human brain is not developed for the new environment – it is designed to believe what it is told instead. Our brains work great in hunter-gather groups but are not well equipped to defend ourselves against modern corruption.

All political issues or structural solutions are subject to the above problem. Unless the issues of human behavior and decision-making processes are significantly augmented, significant levels of corruption will dominate any proposed system.

How to Solve This

The only way to solve this problem is to change the system such that human behavior is guided to prevent the corruption of the decision-making process. We must implement a system that prevents the weaknesses in human cognition that allow the corruption to succeed.

This is why Sapiocracy is worth pursuing. Sapiocracy solves this failure. The result is a structure within which all other decisions can be suggested, contemplated and proven without the corruption caused by the difference between the way our brains are wired and the new (unnatural) environment.

Humans are easily deceived by propaganda, lies and misinformation. Sapiocracy addresses this by giving more voting weight to those who prove to be able to predict the outcome of future events without being misled by bad information. In other words, Sapiocracy rewards those who are correct and harmlessly disables those who are have been misled.

Humans are often incapable of understanding relevant problems. Sapiocracy addresses this by giving more voting weight to those who prove to have sufficient understandings of outcomes. In other words, Sapiocracy rewards those who fully understand, while harmlessly disabling those who don’t understand.

For a general overview of what Sapiocracy is, read this.

The Scientific Method

I’m adding this here as a reminder: Sapiocracy isn’t so different from the scientific method.

The scientific method is the only way the human species has ever found to determine the difference between correct and incorrect. Sapiocracy simply codifies this into a democratic process which harnesses the will of the people through processes of voting and prediction, but without the corruption caused by our hopelessly imperfect human brains.




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