The motion of any physical system, because it obeys definite laws, can be regarded as information processing. – David Deutsch (2011)
The magnitude of information and the complexity of recording, indexing and distribution will require a macro system, combining the reach, ability and fluidity of a Google, Amazon and Wikipedia combined. This system will be supranational, beyond the control or influence of any government, running through a distributed network on a dedicated web parallel to the world-wide-web (www2 or Web 3.0). It will likely be built on existing technology of algorithms and artificial intelligence processing aggregated data on quantum computers, with blockchain and wireless network connectivity. Emerging technology like holonic mapping, and cryptographic hash functions will potentially play key roles in organizing the data.
The assessment, determination and assignation of base value index to each element will follow the best scientific and objective criteria to establish operational algorithms. The subsequent real-time, constant adjustments will be free of human determination and influence. Necessary tweaking, especially in the beginning, will be conducted with full transparency and consensus of all members of the governing body, representing all sovereign entities.
The operations of the United Nations, stem cell research, space exploration and all such programs would be freed from monetary limitations and budgetary constraints. Project support is in essence an advance against projected increase in NPV that will result from the initiative. Similarly, national budgets and the production and consumption of goods and services, those activities that comprise the now prevailing GDP, intrinsically create value, reflected in increased NPV.
Events like the Haitian earthquake, Gulf of Mexico oil spill, Libyan revolt and Japanese triple disaster would register declines in respective national NPV but would trigger immediate distributions from reserves for relief, humanitarian aid, environmental mitigation, and reconstruction. Critical time is wasted under the present arrangement whereby governments and agencies, each at their own pace, search their collective purses for loose change. Reserves are replenished as the affected areas recover and resume contribution to NPV.
Distribution takes place through five classes of holons, for our purpose called accountities (account entities) as needed, matched by production as needed, within the earth’s carrying capacity. Because of the reflective nature of NPV generated by a unit’s activity, it provides both positive and negative feedback, functioning much like carrots and sticks. The widespread application of PI will eliminate or make obsolete the need for many laws, regulations and sanctions. It provides an alternative to money as the sole measure of value, and a way to modulate relationships. A holon’s NPV determines that holon’s standing within its holarchy and, in the case of units of agency, its level of access to benefits and resources.
Figure 13. Circulation.
Class 1 – persons over the age of 18 (adults) with two sub-classes:
a. Infants and youth (birth-18 years old)
b. Dependent adults
Sub-class accounts are attached to a parent, guardian or care-giver’s account.
Class 2 – incorporated entities
b. Associations and organizations
c. Universities, schools, hospitals
Class 3 – Municipalities and jurisdictions
Class 4 – National and international entities
b. Indigenous groups
c. Global organizations
Class 5 – Non-human life
Class 6 – Ecological holons
Class 7 – Intellectual products
b. Creations: art, cuisine, fashion, film, literature, music, theater
c. Manufactured and processed goods
Additional classes may be added for extra-terrestrial holons in light of plans to “colonize” Mars and the moon.
PI may be implemented in any economic unit defined as any number of holons bounded by a permeable membrane into a holarchy.
Figure 14. Holonic metabolism.
- Define unit and establish boundary of Whole (Accountity)
- Inventory components
- Assess value of components according to PI matrix (Table 2) in consultation with specialists: ethicists, anthropologists, biologists, philosophers, actuaries, statisticians, etc.
- These 9 calculations must be done for each of the three portions of NPV
- Basic/Intrinsic Value (BV – Core) assessed at registration, will change in tandem with life stages and personal achievements/transgressions.
- Functional/Activity Value (FV – Metabolic) is maintained by regular activity within one’s vocation and functioning, accrues per operation/event, such as IP access by others.
- Distinctive/Design/Developmental (DV – Additive) added value/innovation/creativity contributes to this dimension. Intellectual property is a holon or sub-account of main accountity.
- All twenty-seven calculations taken together at a point in time give rise to the particular NPV for that moment.
Figure 15. Composite value
An end user will access products or services using an electronic interface like a credit card connected to their account, their identity verified biometrically by fingerprint, iris scanning or some such method. We’ll call this a CHIT – card holder interactive transfer. Now it will be perfectly legitimate, indeed expected, that you chit the system. The globally networked system verifies that the accountity qualifies for the required value level, records the transaction, increases the vendor’s activity index for that period, and so on up the distribution line. Fluctuations in volume, frequency, value and nature of activity will be reflected in adjustments to the NVP indices of all accounts involved. The real-time reporting allows for a self-regulating system which achieves a steady-state or relative homeostasis through constant feedback.
Algorithmic tools will assign relative values to holons based on data from statistics, extrapolations and projections, producing a single variable number from twenty-seven assessments, which number acts upon and is acted upon as soon as it is entered into the database. The system will assimilate constant data feed to update 27 parameters (Fig. 15), aggregating holon information for integration into appropriate position in holarchy. This will be fractally organized with infinite recursiveness up and down the scale.
Figure 16. Holarchic structure of planetary economy
The first essential component of social justice is adequate food for all mankind. Food is the moral right of all who are born into this world. – Norman Borlaug1
To achieve equity, each person is assigned a basic NPV index (BV) that ensures access to the essentials of food, shelter, education and health care. This is a fundamental right as a member of the human race in the 21st century. Above and beyond the minimum, personal NPV index is increased by life stage, education, training, talent and accomplishment (FV), increasing overall NPV and resulting in proportionately increased access. Additional increase in NPV and concomitantly greater access to system resources is acquired by calculating vocational activity level x NPV rating of that vocation. The thorny dilemma of evaluating one person’s time against another’s – say a plastic bottle collector’s contribution vis-a-vis a neurosurgeon’s – is addressed by rating each person’s respective activity level or output. Individual distinction and creative effort are recognized and rewarded (DV).
The highest reward for a man’s toil, is not what he gets for it but what he becomes by it.
– John Ruskin
We may expect billions of current wage earners to quit drudgery jobs they hold just to make ends meet.2 With basic needs taken care of, they will be free to develop their natural talents and pursuits all the while contributing to NPV. Careers will be replaced by vocations. The evaporation of the financial sector will release number-crunchers to serve Value rather than Mammon in new roles of assessment, valorization, and compliance. Mechanization of routine jobs will increase but there will always be room for casual and temporary labor and persons willing to engage in them whether to increase their access to value or just to have structured activity. Some may find fulfillment and meaning in menial tasks. Emancipation from wage slavery will liberate humans to pursue life long learning, develop aptitudes and become more engaged in governance, public service and community building.
Table 3. Outline of Individual NPV.
Table 4. Outline of Group NPV.
Many corporations whose raison d’etre is profit-making will fold as the profit motive is replaced by a drive for increased contribution to value and concomitant return in increased access to value. Making a quick buck will be a thing of the past. Shoddy goods and inferior service will disappear, by attrition without the need for regulations, as no value will accrue to their producers. The manufacturer will have to change its business model or close. There will be fewer brands, less variety and less waste, as all goods produced and sold will be of the highest quality and service having to meet stringent value standards, one of which is recyclability. Cradle to cradle manufacturing (McDonough, 2002) will be the norm, replacing planned obsolescence for profit. Without price constraints, consumers will select only the products with the highest value that meet their needs.3 Access to consumer goods, returnable to source for upgrading or recycling, will replace purchasing and ownership, a practice already evident in the sharing economy such as bike-share, car-share, Netflix, tool libraries, etc.
Companies that now adhere to a triple bottom line can aspire to an upgraded 3BL of environmental, ethical and social considerations. Competition will continue in the pursuit of market share but one inherently based on merit. Customers will support businesses offering higher value thereby increasing those businesses’ value in an ascending virtuous circle. Start-ups will have a ready platform from which to launch without having to figure out how to monetize their endeavor. A blossoming of creativity and innovation will likely be the result.
The distinction between for-profit and non-profit corporations will disappear as all involved in the service sector focus on their core mission without either having to meet shareholder expectations or compete for grant-funding. Their sole purpose will be to create value. Finance based businesses will eventually fade away.
Humans cannot create matter. We can, however, create value. Creating value is, in fact, the essence of our humanity. When we praise people for their strength of character, we are actually acknowledging their ability to create value. – Tsunesaburo Makiguchi
Table 5. Outline of Product NPV.
Comprehensive standards information will be embedded in product NPV, which, as a matter of course, will include ethics and method of production, material content and source, recyclability, etc. Each product will carry a QR code, cryptographic hash-tag or similar, that can be scanned by the end-user for easily readable data to assist in decision-making. The ability to assess products, including the ethics of their production, already exists but the methods are biased toward financial viability and the results contaminated by market considerations and profitability.
The standard view… sees a technology as something largely self-sufficient and fixed in structure, but subject to occasional innovations. But this is true of technologies only if we think of them in the abstract, isolated in the lab, so to speak. “In the wild” – meaning in the real world – a technology is rarely fixed. It constantly changes its architecture, adapts and refigures as purposes change and improvements occur… New structures, new architectures, at any level can form quickly and easily, as needs require. In the real world, technologies are highly reconfigurable; they are fluid things, never static, never finished, never perfect. – Arthur (2009: 41)
Figure 17. Value Chain.
Figure 18. Comparison of systems.
The systems compared in Figure 18 parallel the characteristics that differentiate mechanisms from organisms as characterized by Sahtouris (2000: 370).
MECHANISM (Corporations) ORGANISM (The Web)
Inventor created Self-Created
Hierarchic structure Holarchic embeddedness
Top-down command Holarchic dialog/negotiation
System engineered System negotiated
Repaired by engineers/experts Repairs itself
Evolution by external redesign Evolution by internal redesign
Exists for product or profit Exists for health and survival
Serves owners’ self interest Serves self/society/ecosystem
As a system and platform, PI demonstrates the Organizational and Operational Features of Healthy Living Systems identified by Sahtouris (2000: 369).
COMPLEXITY (diversity of parts)
RESPONSE ABILITY – to internal and external stress or change
EMBEDDEDNESS in larger holons and dependence on them (holarchy)
INPUT/OUTPUT of matter/energy/information from/to other holons
TRANSFORMATION of matter/energy/information
COMMUNICATIONS among all parts
EMPOWERMENT – full employment of all component parts
COORDINATION of parts and functions
BALANCE OF INTERESTS –negotiated self-interest at all levels of holarchy
RECIPROCITY of parts in mutual contribution and assistance
CONSERVATION of what works well
INNOVATION – creative change of what does not work well
Many critics and reformers have correctly analyzed the damaging effects of the global economy on the environment and our prospects for the future. They have arrived at similar models to the above. However, they attribute blame to capitalism as manifested in its various forms and seek to modify it rather than dare to concede that it is the monetary system and financialization that is the root cause, in socialist and communist economies alike.
There is almost universal recognition that a change in values is essential, by changing hearts and minds. History records the application of this approach from the time and teachings of the Vedas, Buddha, Confucius, and the Ten Commandments with little achievement of rate and scale near adequate to approach a tipping point. Appeals to altruism and compassion are embedded in current proposals for circular, sharing, peer-to-peer, open, regenerative and localized models by well-meaning groups. Perhaps if we had another couple centuries. Unfortunately, we do not have that time.
We have the power to defy the selfish genes of our birth and, if necessary, the selfish memes of our indoctrination. – Richard Dawkins (1976)
The implementation of PI is not contingent on successfully educating the public into acceptance. The average person does not know, need or want to know, how the economy works. They only want better outcomes. PI takes human nature as it is, meeting people where they are, acting mostly out of self-interest. PI operates silently and invisibly in the background, imperceptibly weighting choices and influencing behavior in the direction of wholeness and sustainability. In this sense it is a cognitive manifestation of Darwin’s (1859) definition of Natural Selection: The preservation of favorable variations and the rejection of injurious variations, where the evolutionary impetus has shifted from genes to memes.
1 Nobel Peace Prize Acceptance Speech, 1970
2 Except for receiving a paycheck, it appears that most workers don’t really care about their jobs. That’s not surprising. Work doesn’t count as a real human need. It’s only a vehicle by which some needs can be (but for most people aren’t) met. Work doesn’t meet our needs because economic systems, as they exist, didn’t evolve to fulfill the real needs of ordinary people. They evolved largely under pressures exerted by powerful people and groups who wanted to maintain and expand their own privileges. – John Boik, Economic Direct Democracy: A Framework to End Poverty and Maximize Well-Being (2014) http://www.PrincipledSocietiesProject.org.
3 In a mature, balanced ecosystem, there is no waste or pollution, no special cleanup required. The principle of mutual consistency suggests that a healthy species insures its survival by putting out only quality material. Quality material is useful to others. It is only our industrial culture – immature from an ecological/evolutionary perspective – that creates polluting wastes and must then clean up. But it is becoming increasingly evident that adding more technology to clean up ever increasing wastes is a losing battle and cannot lead us to sustainability. – Sahtouris (2000)