Proof of Major Progress

What makes anyone think people will adopt geonomics … soon?

Change is always happening. You can’t stop it. Today is not exactly like yesterday.

Big changes have happened before, too. Usually they sneak right up on people. Like the fall of the Berlin Wall.

Periodically, people do see things differently. Their paradigms shift. A society’s whole worldview will change. The classic example: nobody any longer believes the world is flat.

Other shifts are just as major, if not more so. People now understand:

  • Lower class people can vote.
  • Slavery is not moral nor legal.
  • Women and men are equal in rights.
  • Gays can get married.
  • The environment is precious—the rest of the world is something more than just a thing to use.
  • Impressionistic painting is truly beautiful.
  • A bio-transplant from another’s body is not gross.

How Progress Happens

Those are all huge. What would be good to know is, how did they happen? How does society change its mind? Why was it OK to tell a certain kind of joke then and not now?

Sociologists say the key is “monkey see, monkey do”. Gregarious animals, as are humans, mainly do whatever they see others around them doing, just like a school of fish. To change the direction of those fish, the majority have to see 20% headed elsewhere. Previously, those 20%, the progressives, had to see 5% doing something different. And those 5% “early adopters” had to take an interest in a cutting-edge innovator’s new way of thinking.

For a new idea—like relativity—to become accepted, that new way of thinking must be better than the old way of viewing the world, in two ways. One, it must be more comprehensive—explain more. Two, it must be more elegant—use fewer reasons, even one, simple principle.

Students of scientific revolutions cite e=mc2 as the perfect example of a simple statement that sums up a new worldview and that other scientists—with open minds— can grasp.

Einstein’s worldview eventually also became public policy. His discoveries made possible the atomic bomb, which, during World War II, became the policy of the governments of Germany and America. As you know, the Germans abandoned Einstein’s train of thought while the US nuked Japan.

Want to Adopt a Cute Ideology?

Also perfect is, tah-dah, geonomics: abundance happens, location amplifies it, and we all have every right and duty to share it.

  • Abundance happens. Human population grows because it has more to eat, wear, live in, take to get well, and ways to spread the information, thanks to humans constantly dreaming up new ways to produce wealth more easily—techno-progress.
  • Location amplifies it. That’s why cities are more expensive than the countryside. Land values. Get a bunch of people together in one place and it becomes easier for them to cooperate, to buy and sell, and to spread new ideas. Those advantages show up in location values, captured by whoever owns the land or is owed its rent.
  • All of us have a right and duty to share that surplus. Nobody made a location. All of us make it valuable, since all of us create population density. No landowner can claim to have created population density by himself, and that density is what gives land its exchange value.
Also perfect is, tah-dah, geonomics: abundance happens, location amplifies it, and we all have every right and duty to share it. So geonomics is both elegant and highly principled. What holds it back? Probably the notion that we think the owner of land must also be the recipient of that parcel’s rent.

So geonomics is both elegant and highly principled. What holds it back? Probably the notion that we think the owner of land must also be the recipient of that parcel’s rent. In truth, however, an owner has no more right to the rent for “hers” location than does “hers” neighbors. What each owner has a right to is a share of all the rent in “hers” region, just like all other residents.

Becoming Change Agents

How do we get people to see that they owe rent for the land they claim and are entitled to an equal share of the rent for all the land in their region? People need to identify with their community, so that they feel better paying their neighbors for land than they do paying a banker. That will generate the needed sense of duty. Plus, people need to feel more self-worth, equal to all others, so they feel OK getting an extra income apart from their wages, a rent-share, a Citizen’s Dividend, a la Alaska’s oil dividend. That will generate the justifiable sense of entitlement.

We know how change happens, so how can we speed it up and bring about a geonomic world sooner?

Basically? Get yourself informed. Inform others. And enjoy doing it. Humans gravitate to fun.

© Text Copyright Jeffery J. Smith rights reserved.
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