Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Our big blunder as we emerge......

Where we went wrong as a species and why?........


            Humans made an enormous blunder with the discovery of electricity.  After much meditation, I have come to the conclusion that electricity is the most profound discovery to the emergence of our species so far.  

It demands that we as humans take a close look at it.

            It is so hard for me to communicate ideas with the knowledge and perspective I have. A good scientific writer friend said – “I tend to write very densilly” – so I will try to be extremely verbose with this post.

            Electricity is a very useful form of electromagnetic energy…….

However, integrating it into a complex planetary ecology has to be done in a certain way.           

It was not done in an acceptable way on this planet for our survival……………………..

Premise:  The earth a natural motor or generator of electromagnetic energy.

Our planet is a grounded highly metallic sphere rotating in a magnetic field.  There is an enormous electrical potential difference between our planet and atmosphere.  All that is needed is to make the connection between the two to generate virtually unlimited amounts of pollution free electricity.

This has not been done.

The discovery of electricity came slowly we’ve known about the static charges that build up because of friction ever since the first person got static shock.  However the knowledge that electricity might have practical uses did not really begin to be explored until about the time of the American Revolution.  Benjamin Franklin is the most notable explorer of this physical phenomenon, by flying kites in thunder storms, and making some of the first simple generators of electricity. Reference 1.

It was during the beginning of the Industrial revolution that N Tesla created the first DC dynamo for the generation of electricity. Working for Edison at the time, who was a cheat, ruthless businessman, as well as good at exploiting other peoples discoveries or stealing other artists creations.ref3 Tesla left Edison and went to Westinghouse and made the first AC dynamo. Neither one of these industrialist investors (Edison or Westinghouse) understood the ramifications or the need for how to integrate electricity’s use into our ecology. Tesla was an enlightened scientist who had a wide ranging vision of the significance of electricity as well as a sensitivity for how electricity would transform our world.  He also knew that if it was not integrated into our ecology in a sound ecological way that it would have major long term consequences. Ref 456

The discovery of electricity and its use, is a form of basic useful electromagnetic energy, part of a larger spectrum of electromagnetic energy. ie. Electron Energy.  Electricity is the most useful and significant form of practical electromagnetic energy that we have discovered.  Although we have started using light and lasers as for communications, electromagnetic energy created the emergence of electronics, of which we have all been a part of, and makes possible the computer I’m using to write this paper. It is functional electromagnetic ENERGY. Electricity is more significant, than fire in a modern age.

However, the way that we create electricity and how it needs to be integrated into a very complex ecological system needed to be done in accordance to Tesla’s vision.  If not, we see the ecological ramifications we are faced with now in our current society. 

The reasons for why electricity was not generated in an ecological way are complex.  I will address that in a bit.

After Tesla’s failure to convince Edison or Westinghouse in how to integrate electricity into our world, he went to J.P. Morgan for funding to begin building the generating system for electricity.ref8 It seems radical to us, but his vision was to create a link between the earth and our atmosphere. By creating a specific grounding system connected with large towers in our atmosphere, it is possible to draw and transform the potential difference between the ground and atmosphere and transform and generate pollution free electricity. Tesla’s vision goes further, he then wanted to put this energy into the atmosphere in the form of high energy radio electromagnet energy. (very high voltage, very low amperage and wattage). Then all that would be necessary was to have an antenna on your electric device to make use of the atmospheric electricity, thus, transforming it into a practical useful electric energy. Kinda like world Wi Fi electrical energy, if you will… Remember this was happening before we built the electric infrastructure we have now. What Tesla wanted to do, was to generate electricity from the naturally occurring relationship between our planet and the magnetic field it revolves in. In doing so he envisioned a simple, practical, clean way to make electricity available by transforming the natural planetary dynamo that it is, into useful electric energy and transmitting it into the atmosphere in a useful non polluting form.

Nikolai Tesla was able to research and develop the first electrical generating system in his lab in the New York area and show that electricity could be generated from the potential difference between the earth and our atmosphere. He then went to Colorado Springs and started building a much larger electrical generating plant. The beauty of Tesla’s vision of generating electricity was that it took advantage of a naturally occurring phenomenon of our planet for pollution free electric energy.  You have to remember that at the beginning of the industrial revolution that there was a lot of radical thinking about how we should live on this planet.  The population of the planet was 1-2 billion. From about 1882 to1920 the scientists of the time were looking at a lot of things in relationship to the scientific discoveries of the time.  It is very important to have an awareness of the scientific thinking of the time in economics, our political system, and the relationship between the economics and political thinking of the time and what the scientific thinking was in the discoveries they were making available to us as a species. In many ways the economic thinking of that time was incompatible with the scientific discovery of electricity.  Remember that in terms of economics that the concept of state property and communism was a new prevailing idea in relationship to the concept of a utopian society

.  During Nikolai’s youth he had a unique experience during an illness that had made him aware or given him an opportunity to experience what electricity would do for our planet it’s not clear exactly what he experienced, but he had a vision of how to make use of the discovery of electricity and the best way to integrate into our ecology. It was this vision that he had, that was so misunderstood by the economic thought and political structure of our society, the vision that he had was utopian.  Utopian in that, what Tesla wanted to do was create electrical energy for free to everyone. 
It is necessary to understand this with the generation of electricity in a different way economically for its practical application on this planet.  In terms of economics you have to think rationally about the flawed concept of ownership and property.  Just because you own a piece of property and can generate electrical energy from fossil fuels do the people who owned that land have the right to the legacy of the fossil fuels. The thinking of the time, many scientists at this time believed that the future concept of property was communal.  Remember the classic story of the interaction between the Indians and New York and the Europeans negotiating beads for land.  This is a wonderful example of how you think about property.  The idea that you can own property was being seriously questioned at this time.  The Indians of the America’s were more than happy to accept beads for land, because the idea or concept of land ownership seemed ridiculous to them.  It has taken a very long time and in many ways not been realized that the Native Americans that we invaded had a sound and wonderful way of thinking and living in the natural world.  The economic thinking that came out of Europe had a ruthless point of view about property in the generation of wealth.  It is very important to understand this basic economic difference in relationship to the generation of electricity.  The real question we have to ask ourselves is the generation of energy a product for sale by the makers of it, or is it a birth right or legacy of our species.  Tesla envisioned the naturally occurring phenomenon of electrical potential that can be generated from a naturally occurring relationship between our planet and atmosphere as communal and or belonging to all of us. With that in mind, Tesla’s vision was to create simple generating systems of electricity that took advantage of this naturally occurring phenomenon between our planet and provide electricity to the world by incorporating a small charge for the use of this pollution free electricity in the cost of the product that uses the electricity to maintain the generating systems.
Although this may seem radical, it was not radical to the thinking of the time or maybe it was. scientists and explorers make discoveries, and in general they have a very good understanding and overview of the relationship between their discoveries in relationship to how it might affect our world. in the case of electricity, and the profound nature of electricity, it is necessary to incorporate a discovery of this profound nature in a very specific way and Tesla knew that. unfortunately, the economic philosophy or dogma of the time prevented it from happening.  It’s necessary, to look at our nature as a species on this planet, since the beginning of civilized life. The first specialized citizens created a hierarchal system that controlled resources. 
This hierarchal system was incompatible with the discovery of electricity.

“I think it’s very important to understand this in relationship to the discovery of electricity. In many ways the discovery of electricity is so radical in relationship to our emergence as a species, as was the discovery of fire and our ability to make use of it.”  That said, we really don’t realize as a species, because electricity in many ways is so still so new to us, but we are witnessing the ramifications of not generating it properly. Tesla, had a vision, and that made him aware that the discovery of electricity would radically transform us as much as fire had.  This vision that Tesla had and his ability to create the first dynamos to generate electricity is a fascinating story, unfortunately in many ways the economic thought of the time prevented it from being integrated into our ecology in an appropriate way.  The other unfortunate fact is that the discoveries of many scientists have ramifications, just like Frankenstein.  In many ways scientific discoveries can be a monkeys paw, because, how we make use of the scientific discoveries is not always well understood, or put to use in a way that improves the human condition. This is so true of many things that we’ve discovered as we’ve emerged on this planet not just the discovery.  Scieentific discovery and science in not the basic problem it is how we make use of it economically.  I could cite many examples like the discovery of nuclear reactions and other scientific discoveries but for me the discovery of electricity is perhaps the most profound discovery that we have made as a species and the ramifications there of .  At the turn-of-the-century and/or millennium in 2000 my father and I talked about what the most significant discovery of the 20th century was. Although the discovery of flight and going to the moon in less than 70 years was significant, we both agreed that electricity was the most significant discovery of the 20th century, and with this in mind, it is also important to understand that with the discoveries made during the industrial revolution that the prevailing economic thought of the time did not change in ways necessary to incorporate these discoveries. We live in a very complicated and poorly understood environment, and it is necessary as we emerge and with our discoveries and more complex technology that we’ve discovered, that, they are not only changing us, but changing the world we live in. The unfortunate fact in relationship to these discoveries is that we have an old ruthless way of thinking about the economics in the relationship to this emergence, it really hasn’t changed very much in over 8000 years.

“It seems to be a flawed part of our psychological and, biological nature. Like the bible implies, we are flawed.  Philosophically and economically; “Does might make right”?  What we have ask ourselves, at this point in time, is, can we change this, and incorporate these discoveries in a way that we do not destroy ourselves and the planet we live on”.

I think the answer may be no,

However, I will endeavor to put in writing where we went wrong.
Carl Sagan implied in many of his works of fiction, we are very violent species.

It seems clear to me from my childhood, that our world is not unlike elementary school. Every classroom has its psychopathic bully. Lord knows I certainly had mine and in certain respects that’s the nature of our world and economic system. It seems to me that this economic system that we've created favors the psychopath. Reference psycho-pathology.

It’s funny as I write this, to realize that I might just be standing up to these bullies for the first time with a good example of why electricity and its significance, that we might be very close to destroying ourselves because of our economic system.

For me the basic problem is the relationship to our economic beliefs and the discoveries we've made as a species.

To truly appreciate this concept, it will be very important to understand the relationship between our economic thought and to a certain extent our biological & psychological thought in relationship to the discovery of electricity.

It’s Christmas time of my 57th year, and I have known since my undergraduate studies in the 70s where I studied economics, psychology ,and the history of utopian though;  that capitalism and a term Joseph Sumpter coined called creative destruction, that the possibility of integrating a more just and fair utopian way of living was not possible until capitalism failed. So I became a photographer and I have had a fun with a career as a photographer until now. Creative destruction is the idea that we are always destroying the old ways of doing things in favor of the new and better and many time simple more complex ways of doing something. A lot of you will be thinking that that last statement was kind of an oxymoron. So let me try to clarify. Einstein said that simplification of means and elevation of mind seems to be the goal. Many times through creative destruction a simpler way of doing something in a more complex way becomes a path to a better way of doing something, and through this creation emergence occurs. This is a basic economic concept in economics and science. Unfortunately, the foundation or precept or basic idea of economics doesn’t seem to change. Economics is the idea and dogma that supports the concept of ownership and property rights to the people with wealth and power. Like I mentioned the first specialized citizens in a civilization control this wealth & power and up until recently knowledge. Economics is just the construct that supports a ruthless and unjust distribution of resources.

What I had not meditated in my youth on, however was the significance of electricity in relationship to this problem and have now chosen to write about it.

Creative destruction is at the heart of emergence. As explorer, scientists and artists on this planet we are emerging by becoming more complex, and simplifying the way we do things in complex ways and in the process of elevating our minds. Capitalism always favors a simpler but sometimes more complex way or technology in order to produce things more efficiently. Economically, creative destruction is basic in relationship to understanding the path we have taken as a species.  we are toolmakers and it has transformed us. Emergence is the idea that complex systems create greater complexity but in economic terms, creative destruction demands that capitalism is always favoring a simpler more efficient way of doing something. Emergence is a basic principle of the universe. And it’s important to appreciate this principle in relationship to this discussion of electricity and its incorporation on this planet.

Last year the movie Cloud Atlas came out, and it’s all about slavery, I think it’s very important as well to consider slavery, especially the corporate slavery that we are experiencing in our times. That power in the form of controlled resources and labor by a select few in a civilized hierarchy needs to be part of this discussion. This fact that power corrupts is unfortunate. Like Carl Sagan said we have so much potential as a species, but he really wondered whether we could get past this fact that a select few powerful people without empathy and to a certain extent under educated or ignorant people control our destiny. This fact is very clear in his works of fiction. Or perhaps our economic beliefs are just a very flawed outdated economic philosophy that has not changed, but it needs to. Our survival depends on it.  The discovery of electricity and how it has been incorporated will create a very strong argument for this………….

In a way electricity is the best modern discovery for making this point abundantly clear. I just hope it is not too late.  I have have this over wellhming  feeling of dread. Like the good Germans who tried to stand up to the onslaught of facism, I hope that I don’t go to my grave wishing I had done more sooner….

Capitalism at its core is about exploitation.

In other words, the person with the ability dominate others has the opportunity to exploit labor and resources for what they call wealth and profit. This thinking has been pervasive since our emergence of what we call a civilized world, What we call slavery was our first and hopefully most ruthless form of exploitation. It’s impossible to become powerful just working for yourself and in general, generate much wealth from just your own labor. As an individual you are only capable of producing so much. It is this very old way of dominating labor by a select few that empowers them to exploit a certain percentage of other peoples labor for there own, ie  that the select few are able create what they call profit for themselves from the labor of others and in relationship to earths resources.

This creates a conundrum.

Because dominating and controlling people for your own benefit is intoxicating. We call it power – it’s a rush, in psychological terms it may be the most significant form of reinforcement certain people get to experience.  It can also be considered bullyism and it is at the root of psychopathic thought. It seems to be a part of our basic biological and psychological demographic nature as a species. And as such may not be very changeable. You can see monetary slavery propagated and defended by the dogma that is the foundational principles of our current unjust economic belief system of our civilized world. The recent movie Cloud Atlas is a good example of this exploitation. 

This happens because psychopathic thought lacks empathy.

It seems clear to me in December 2013, that this way of thinking economically does not have a future for us as a species.

I remember how the bullies I grew up made me feel, and the way I feel when I look at our economic system is basically the same feeling. William Blake said that the world was made for those who do not have a sense of self awareness. In 1978 I finished my degree in communications. And the one thing I've learned with a degree in communications is that we don’t do it very well. This is a complicated problem, because as we interact as a species using whatever form of communication we choose it’s not well known whether what were communicating by us-ie. by an individual is well understood by the other person as we intend. Empathy when communicating or what we communicate and what we try to comprehend is incredibly important. Without empathy we are not communicating. And it seems to me like the people who lack empathy, control our world and our destiny as a species, like Blake said the world was made for those without self-awareness.  Empathy is a great word, and behavior, when you really understand its meaning, because a lack of self awareness of yourself in relationship to others is basic to creating a fair and just economy.  I have had the opportunity to interact with some of the wealthiest people on this planet and it is clear to me that they grow up in a very different privileged ideology. I guess the question is, is the ideology psychopathic or are the people in the environment that they grow up generate psychopathic behavior/thought. Or is it just a reflection of the environment that shaped us through evolution. An argument can be made at this point as to whether our environment shaped us or we have shaped our environment in relationship to the way the environment and our evolutionary development occurred on this planet. I’m inclined to think, that it’s both. Our emergence or evolution on this planet created a dynamic diverse variety of different humans. At least in the way they think, and treat each other. Like the movie cloud Atlas with its classic line:” the weak are meat and the strong shall eat”. Which is just a poetic way of saying that certain people like to exploit other people, it’s at the root of cannibalism which has a profound symbolism, and the movie Cloud Atlas does a good job of showing this behavior. It’s impossible for me to write these things without incorporating fundamental art and knowledge and information that I've gained as I've looked at my relationship to the world,  I was born into without incorporating a broad range of contemporary information. So bear with me as I try to write differently for the first time incorporating a lot of selected, and hopefully carefully selected ideas about how we are living in this complex universe.

James Joyce was an abstract writer and although his writing is rather poetic and fun I think he got the idea across in Finnegan’s wake with the opening line the of  the book. It’s basically a good example of abstract writing and very poetic in creative and abstract ways. “riverrun, past swerve of shore and bend the bay brings us by commodious vircus of recirculation to Howith Castle and environs. This opening to Finnegan’s wake and the rest of the book makes for one of the newest forms of abstract literature that’s ever been written. For me during the course of this writing  on electricity is an attempt to bring a lot of very abstract knowledge that we have as a species in a way of looking at electricity and its ramifications and importance to both our survival and use of the discovery of electricity. So bear with me dear reader.

I also know, that if I am successful in publishing this work or opus, that there will be tremendous resistance to the ideas and concepts that I’m talking about there may be a certain amount of danger to me personally for doing so. But like a good German I hope it’s not too late I hope that I do not regret having not done this sooner and that I could have done more. Einstein said that “in the middle of difficulty lies opportunity”. It seemed to me in my undergraduate years that there was absolutely no opportunity for things to change economically. During the war years of the 70's that I grew up in and the discovery of the concept of global warming and overpopulation it seemed to me after deliberate study that there was not an opportunity to make or do this kind of project i.e. book that might gain traction or of voice in our society at that time. Although the protests of the Vietnam War were encouraging things just hadn’t gotten bad enough the population needed to double and global warming needed to happen but now there seems to be an opportunity to make a statement about our human condition and prospect. Regardless of the failures of my baby boom generation in the 70s the fight ain’t over.IN other words - Things have to get much worse before real change can occur. But we as a species are ready for this change and its over due……….

The fight is for our own individual survival.

Individuality is an incredible thing being here and alive in this body, however there are a lot of different environments that each of us grow up in individually and it shapes our thinking, there is also a genetic element to it. I’m inclined to think that our environment and especially our childhood environment shapes the kind of the individual we become. For me that environment was academic intellectual and most importantly being taught empathy for others. This playful artistic environment shaped the fundamental way of interacting I learned, making it possible for me to engage scientifically, artistically, and rationally with my world, coupled with the underlying concept of remaining objective about everything in our world. in other words one should not become emotionally attached or accept a specific belief ,idea, scientific discovery or established fact in our system as a verity in relationship to this complex world we’re living in, because, when do, you lose objectivity, you lack the ability to emerge to the next level and lack a perspective that allows you to grow intellectually in relationship to our collective environment.  

Two quotes are needed here:

 First is one from a psychiatrist friend I had who basically said;” that our emotions control us, and we like to think that we have control over our emotions, but our emotions tend to control us”.
Emotions are kind of a nebulous thing that in psychological terms we don’t really understand.

The other quote is by Leon Trotsky from his book the revolution betrayed, in the introduction he’s quoted as saying;” whoever worships the accomplished fact is incapable of preparing for the future”. One thing is constant, that our world is dynamic and always changing.

So what am I trying to say here? Our belief’s, our emotions, and ideas tend to give us a certain amount of comfort about ourselves. When change occurs your emergence occur's it changes our relationship with our beliefs and ideas. Most change comes through discovery as we as humans are basically exploring our universe. I wrote in college that human life is just  matter trying to figure itself out. In the process of that discovery things change. Our emotions and beliefs and ideas during this process tends to give us a little sense of security happiness and joy. However as we experience the process of rapid emergence, this basic principle of our universe we are continually challenged to accept our discoveries.

It’s remarkable that we have come so far so quickly in our physical world.


Some of the discoveries in quantum mechanics are so mind-boggling, that sometimes I think I’m in some child’s computer simulation. And for the most part it’s not a very good simulation, there’s something wrong with the program. And by my way of thinking, the crux of the problem is in the relationship to discovery, and our ability to empathize and communicate how these discoveries should be used. Because there is a very big difference between the scientists, artists, explorers, and the humans who make these discoveries and the privileged ones in our world who integrate them into our ecology.