Ideapod – response to “Stop trying to change the world”

Stop Trying To Change The World

Disagree with the thesis on a couple of levels.

I love the Margaret Mead quote “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.”

And while I acknowledge that everything we do, and everything we interact with, changes us, it …is also possible to one individual to catalyze a change. And yes, most often there are many individuals, all fairly close to seeing the same thing, and not always.

It can certainly be powerful to work in a collaborative process, and I enjoy doing that. And we are capable of thinking far faster than we can communicate, so sometimes we can get much more done alone than in a group if one is truly exploring new territory. And there is risk in such a strategy, substantial risk.

At some point, to make change real, communication will need to happen, the memes have to transmit, stick, and replicate.

I have been committed to changing the world for over 50 years – like many.

[followed by]

Yes and no.

Yes – certainly – be the change. And change is difficult, it takes a lot of persistent consistent effort. I know that becoming vegan 7 years ago after 55 years of being a carnivore is one of the hardest things I have done.

And certainly, failure is part of achievement. In the realm of entrepreneurship there is a saying “fail fast, fail often”. Failure teaches us what doesn’t work. If we learn those lessons, then we end up finding what does work.

I have 4 times stood for parliament on the basis of creating universal abundance through automation, and the need to have something other than market systems in place to create stability and security. Failed each time. Learned something each time.

Change does happen.

The world today is very different from the world 100 or 1,000 or 10,000 years ago.

What sort of change do we want?
How do we make a difference to the sorts of change that happen?
What are our highest values?
What is our long game?

[followed by]

Exactly what process would that be that you want us to trust Maria?

Evolution is essentially a random walk through the possibility spaces available. It works through differential survival.

If, as I am, one is committed to the values of life and liberty, applied universally to all sapient entities, then one cannot use differential survival, as if one is true to one’s values all must have a reasonable probability of survival.

Having been deeply engaged in both economic and political processes over the last half century, I have no great trust in either. Both have major failure modalities that are all too common.

Individual awareness seems to be our greatest asset, yet economic and political incentive structures work directly against it.

Fundamental structural and strategic change seem to be our only reasonable alternatives.
And it must be a matter of individual choice.
And the basic context matters – influences choice.

Agree in the sense that we cannot be attached.

About Ted Howard NZ

Seems like I might be a cancer survivor. Thinking about the systemic incentives within the world we find ourselves in, and how we might adjust them to provide an environment that supports everyone (no exceptions) - see www.tedhowardnz.com/money
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