Chronicling the Bottom Up
Connection Revolution


Zeitgest Movement Founder Peter Joseph, Interviewed by Rob Kall

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Broadcast 10/9/2017 at 16:30:37

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Zeitgeist Movement's Peter Joseph on Rob Kall Bottom Up Show Peter discusses his vision of the future-- economically, technologically, culturally. He has a new book out, The New Human Rights ,which offers his vision of how humans can move forward.

Here's a first: This is a automatically created transcript created by Youtube. It's rough, some words are not converted properly, but it's better than the rough notes I usually go with.

Peter Joseph Youtube transcript


my guest for this show is Peter Joseph

he's the creator of the zeitgeist series

of videos and he has a new book out the

new Human Rights

welcome to the show

thank you I appreciate you having me Rob

you've got some amazing reviews for this

book so I just wanted to mention a few

Marianne Williamson is in The New York

Times bestselling author who was on this

show earlier this year says the Peter

Joseph is one of the great visionaries

of our time if there's a beautiful

future and I think there will be then

his fingerprints will be all over it and

then you got some Amazon reviews one

said it's the most objective scientific

humanly and earthly relevant book of the

century and then another said this book

should be required reading for all

school-aged children that's very time

that people make those comments I

appreciate that almost everybody I

interview has a book and I don't see

very many amazing so first thing I want

to do is I want to get an idea of you

you're one of your claims to fame is

that you you're at zeitgeist movement is

one of the biggest social movements in

the world though it does give us a

little background there for people who

are not familiar with it the rare Birds

I guess well sure

well it was a very organic development I

think it's something like this has to

come on its own while I might have been

considered the founder or the instigator

of the movement as I as I loose Lee

proposed it and the second film I made

called zeitgeist addendum which

addressed a lot of economic issues very

different from the first film so I you

know I threw it out there to see you

know what people would do if they were

given the option to try and join a

larger community to try to see global

change as opposed to national change

what most movements go for because at

the end of the day we really have to

have a global revolution so to speak

economically speaking if we expect to be

sustainable in the future as you know

all the pollution as the pollution

crisis continues to grow with climate

change and so on and many other issues

that are just as detrimental as climate

change but anyway so this thing happened

in about 1990 excuse me about 2008

and we originally partnered with an

organization called The Venus Project

man named Jacque fresco and for about

two years we work together and then it

was decided that they were gonna

maintain their particular their

particular focus which was more of a

think-tank and the movement would spread

and do more of the social activism and

bridging on its own and a natural

organic unfolding happened but long

story short we've conducted well over a

thousand events since that time at

almost a year like real physical events

not online events in terms of our media

work we've done literally thousands and

thousands of lectures and online things

and so on so we've been very prolific in

terms of the movement and the future

well I always joke that everyone's in

the zeitgeist movement whether they like

it or not because it's like guys define

as the spirit of the time we're all

contributing to what's happening in this

world again whether we're conscious of

it or not even the family with their

their two children that seems locked

into a bubble with the nine to five jobs

they're still promoting values that are

being shared by others and define the

world through a causal systemic chain

reaction what what is it yes it's a

global sustainability advocacy

organization and we are 501c3 as well

but beyond that we advocate a deep

economic shift into a kind of

resource-based economic model which

basically alludes the fact and that's

what the bulk of my talks are these days

that the market system of economics is

very old archaic structure something we

falsely assume is built into our

evolutionary psychology in a way that is

immutable as a lot of people have argued

that we have to have a competitive

exchange based society we bridge

specialization of Labor and there's no

other option and of course many who look

at any other kind of social approach

such as we saw with the Bolshevik

Revolution historical communism they

quickly assume that everything that

isn't capitalism will gravitate towards

some kind of bureaucratic tyranny in


so we battle a lot of that mythology

because that's exactly what it is and

for again for the past decade all of our

events have been centered around the

need to educate people and make them

realize that we are not going to have a

productive future if we don't change our

economy it doesn't

relates the the ecological crisis it

also relates to public health which is

in part why the new human rights

movement focuses so much on public

health research to show that it effect a

class stratified society and this is all

in our materials as well a class

stratified society is a toxic society

there is that is another great mythology

that we see where people think well if

you have people with more and people

with less the people with less will

strive to produce and contribute to

society and progress it so they can be

people with more that's pretty much the

basic core academic mythology we've had

and justifies class stratification

beyond of course the elitist theories

which I also cover in the book like

social dominance theory I do a whole

section on this this rather ludicrous

idea that it's built into our DNA to

have a power interest to dominate people

maybe DNA is the wrong word but they

don't specify exactly what kind of Beast

within when these theorists put forward

but nevertheless they know you're kind

of transitioned into the book which is

an idea what the zeitgeist movement is

about one nice question why do you call

it is like well because the films I'm a

were called zeitgeist and again my first

thought of a social movement after my

background wasn't as an activist really

it was it was as a as kind of a guy that

was working at the time and advertising

and marketing I didn't actually care in

the sense that I do now I didn't feel

the um you know the I was just as

narrow-minded and narcissistic during

the time of Mike the creation of my

first film as I think most people are

trying to survive in my mid-20s so that

name simply came out of the films as the

experiment unfolded to call it the

zeitgeist movement which had of course a

clinical definition too I mean the

zeitgeist movement being again the

spirit of the times if we want a

transition society we are going to

transition our values as well we're

going to transition how we think about

each other in the world and that is the

zeitgeist so okay so that took care of

that okay you know how is this book

related to your your film series well it

kind of isn't I mean the film series was

it was a strange arc

that started off with me addressing very

controversial issues in a public

performance piece which is what it was a

lot of people don't realize that I was a

class I am a classical musician I don't

do it anymore and professionally but

that's what my development was a

classical percussionist 20th century

type of classical percussionist 3 views

a lot of experimental mixed media and

things like that so the first film was

actually a performance piece and once it

gained great popularity I was like okay

well I have people listening to me this

is odd I mean that was that piece wasn't

even supposed to be released as a film

it wasn't legal it had no clearance it

was just out there and some people hated

it some people loved it generally across

the board all mainstream or any news

agencies despised it it's kind of

interesting that it preserved this kind

of subculture as it did and I felt the

need to transition that subculture into

something that focused on know more

relevant issues not just talk about

government corruption and all the you

know the history that we are familiar

with in terms of these again the side

effects of our social system in effect

you've been brutalized I mean I know

sure I went to the Wikipedia page for

the site and I've had my own share of

experiences with Wikipedians who didn't

like my perspective and they literally

took down the op-ed news website

altogether it took literally two years

to work with with the good guys at

Wikipedia and there are lots of them too

to get straight and I thought about you

know going in and editing some of what

they say about you but I knew that

anything that's in there don't waste

your time because it's it's a bureau

it's a bureaucratic arrogance that

exists on Wikipedia as a semi failed

type of communal structure you know kind

of a collective Commons attempt which

I'm in favor of a kind of participatory

economic participatory society but we

could talk at length about the flaws of

Wikipedia you've been really slammed and

oh sure well I think is a kind of a a

message that doesn't carry a lot of the

stuff that the zeitgeist films carried

that that you know there's a lot of

there's like

it's two in there I think oh yeah there

is in terms of you're referring to the

book yeah yeah of course I mean

obviously it's a it's a trajectory and

all the stuff about you know economic

inequality I in the third film which was

kind of a masterpiece of that trilogy I

really figured out what I wanted to

communicate after you know a couple of

years that embraces the gesture of the

book but the book goes another length

and it starts to break down

you know the very root concepts such as

socio-economic inequality you know

that's a that's you know it's

differentiated from I'll say long story

short is I've just been in a process of

clarifying my position as I learn more

and more and it's been a natural

trajectory I encourage people to watch

the films and realize that there is an

arc here and then I think that it's very

positive for people to go through that

experience to see this new trajectory

and how it all fits in in terms of the

book but yeah let's continue great so

what's your big goal for this book if

it's successful as it could possibly be

and beyond what will happen well

successful defined as actually

influencing people that would mean what

would happen is we'd see a galvanization

luckily a new subculture a protest

movement but more than that a

developmental movement a creative

movement that says we're not going to

participate in this system and we're

going to develop new systems or engineer

new ways for us to engage our economy

and engage our democracy which kind of

proceeds from the economy I argue so

it's going to excuse me in the hope it's

all in the hope that educate and then

give people together to effectively

change the world I mean I couldn't

express how that could happen on number

of different ways that's a long that's a

big conversation give some bullet points

well if you wanted well first I have to

define the kind of economic model that

that I advocate and that we advocate is

a movement and and really has been

advocated in part by a lot of people

throughout the years that are just using

common sense in terms of what it means

to be sustainable and what it means to

increase public health let me just throw

in one more to eat detail this church

this is I call this the bottom up show

I've been doing it for nine years and I

believe we're transitioning from a

predominantly top-down culture that was

set in motion by civilization and we're

moving more towards a more bottom-up

culture actually returning to the bottom

of culture which is the way humans

existed for millions of years when I in

Hunter bands and so I'm always looking

for my guests to kind of frame some of

their ideas in terms of bottom-up and

top-down my bottom-up is really big and

it certainly includes sustainability so

if you if you can throw any of that

through it that angle in there I'd

appreciate it oh absolutely I could

start by saying in terms of innovation

in terms of how we can create a society

that has increased increased justice

less oppression we have to develop

systems which we can now through digital

technology that allow the masses to

interact in a way that transcends the

corporation and effectively transcends

business business

now that's very bottom-up that's

actually returning to a kind of premia

lithic revolution worldview which of

course was very minimalistic you had

small bands and tribes I didn't use they

didn't have money that didn't have

markets and they had an egalitarian

system and the existing hunter-gatherer

societies if you can find any of them

there are a few that still remain

there's so much to learn from them and

so much to learn from the people that

have studied these these folks the

anthropologists over the course of the

you know 19th 20th century where they're

mostly documented or well documented and

I think that in the future we're gonna

see a return to this black excuse me

this less materialistic society because

we're gonna begin to understand the

nature of our sustainability we're gonna

realize that advertising and marketing

that part of its job the part of the

market systems job in part is to get you

to buy things with increased demand I

mean that's a that's a it's almost

cliche to say that but I think you're

gonna realize the magnitude of what that

means you know we have a whole society

driven by consumption and historically

speaking you know expressing your point

and kind of the change of things the

early on when the market and capitalist

structures were beginning to

form there there was such an arduous

process when it came to creation and and

we didn't realize that having labor

linked to income would eventually

manifest over time to being detrimental

where we have robotics now that are

replacing jobs and now labor linked to

income is forcing people to forcing I

should say advertising agencies and

marketing to ramp up its influence and

to get people to become more and more

consumeristic to the great detriment of

our ecology so that Colonel seed and

this is you know this relates to what

you're saying was always there and this

is what this is the problem of this

society is that it's archaic and no one

realizes that we're now in an outdated

place and you can't have labor linked to

income anymore

how is consumerism related well if you

have okay so in a premie oolitic society

you have people that had a deep social

nature they actually had a human

interest they had an interest in their

society in the community there was a

very playful quality they didn't have a

materialistic relationship with nature

they had a needs-based relationship with

nature and each other and what's

happened through time because of where

we ended up after the post Neolithic

after the Neolithic Revolution and then

upon the Industrial Revolution where we

where we realize we could produce more

than ever before and then since that

trajectory what I call in the book the

great divergence from the Malthusian

trap which we can talk about that from

that trajectory it had to we had to

develop a society that was based on

consumerism so my point is that you're

you know what you've stated


in terms of bottom-up there's a value system disorder that's been created that's promoting more elitism it's promoting more ecological insustainability and I

see that connection so I just want to

make that point clear he's a lot of

people you know they say to me well the

the purpose of our society is to is to

meet demand but they don't realize how

much demand were actually creating

because of the need for people to buy

and consume and that translates into all

sorts of negative effects planned

obsolescence nothing lasts anymore you

know going back to the bottom-up issues

since I know you want to speak about

that I think that

I think that in the future in the vision

of the zeitgeist movement is you end up

with a very high efficient society where

people don't have the stress or I should

say the tradition of going to a job in

the middle of a city and they get in

their car along with everybody else and

they pile into traffic and then they sit

in an office and push paper around and

then they come back to their house and

they're basically stationary and they're

lucky if they go and have a vacation at

some point they're lucky if they have

the budget to move around the world

imagine a new

neo Neolithic Society where you

have people they're actually moving

around the world with a less

materialistic value system respecting

the planet respecting all these

sustainability issues that we need

realize and we can create create a

global abundance on this planet now due

to the efficiency of Technology

something that Buckminster Fuller and

Jacque fresco many people have proven

over and over again mathematically and I

talk about it of course in the book

especially in the tendencies regarding

the potential of all of our food and

energy and so on and you end up with a new society that is very much similar to what the pre Neolithic Revolution reality was except now it's high-tech and now people's home becomes the world

so we're jump into a big extreme there

but I like planning that's I like that I

asked you to give the big picture what

it would look like if your book was a

success and you just did real core human

values the ones that work it's not what

we idealize in terms of justice it's

what's working it's not right and wrong

it's what works and what doesn't and

what we know today is that our

consumeristic capitalist society isn't

working but as creating so many negative

externalities and the weak and I just to

conclude we follow a train of thought

and that's what the book presents which

is what I mentioned in the book and say

this is a train of thought and I hope

people grasped onto it and this is where

we end up with a very humane perspective

very ecologically dependent and

respectful perspective not driven by

status and consumption and materialism

and we're going to get to your thoughts

on economics and economic models because

there are this a key part of your book

and your whole message but yeah you

talked about values the values are

very interesting to me I think that

there are top-down values there are

bottom-up values I when I think of

top-down I think of centralization of

hierarchy of power and domination power

over I think of secrecy and control and

I'm just touching the surface of it but

what are your ideas of some basic values

that would persevere and that would

develop and grow in this future that you

envision I think the values that people

aspire to the values that we could say

are the opposite of what we're seeing

with the new iconic trumpet ik world

where everyone wants to win we're you

taught you call someone a loser because

because they have basically less options

than you which is really what the effect

is because our system is not equal it's

not even there's nothing even remotely

balanced social mobility and all these

myths of our society keep communicating

to people that it's their fault but it's

not it's actually structural so the

values that I see are really mean I hate

to be kind of sound generic but they're

humane values their values that probably

go back to Native American cultures

First Nations peoples that wrote you

know that have been written about

extensively that's all harmony with

nature as actually a success that's all

making sure that their group and tribe

and community was actually taken care of

as success as opposed to this as you

just pointed out elitist values values

of winning and domination getting

something over on somebody and feeling

good about it you know these are

childish values and they're and again

they're so perfectly exemplified by the

cultural climate we've seen the merge

with the Trump administration as a as an

icon as a allowance so to speak where

people now feel like they can release

their childish racist bigoted winning

and oppressive and generally restrictive

values on each other and they think that

that's actually the way the world is

supposed to be and as you know I I think

Trump is the he's the malignant

narcissist of the planet and he's

sitting kind of as you said you he's

setting up a way for giving people

permission to do that yeah the person

who I think has best expressed how

values are in us is dharshan our bias

who did the neurobiology of the

development of human morality familiar

with it I'm not you're gonna you gotta

check it out okay but she basically says

is that human morals are deeply

evolutionarily wired into who we are and

they came about because of the way we

lived in hunter-gatherer bands even

before there were tribes that basically

people treated each other great and they

treated the environment as a part of

themselves yeah that is the beginning I

think of a value system that is the kind

that I think we want to bring forward

and it's so really and one of your

interviews you talk about spiraling back

and that's the concept I love I think

that's the way we functions is in

spirals and I think that that's what's

going to happen is we've begun to spiral

back to that aspect of humanity that is

is deep in us and ready to just pop out

when this system of economic changes

that you're describing takes place so ok

so you mentioned structural system talk

about that tie it back tie that it's in

terms of economics sure and and building

on what you've just said without the

reinforced operant conditioning without

a structure such as an economy that

doesn't motivate people to screw each

other over doesn't motivate trade

strategizing dominance which is a phrase

I use a lot until we can change the

motivations of our society especially in

terms of survival we can't really expect

that core you know moral kernel to come

forward and that's why I argue in the

book that it's really a cultural

phenomenon due to structures that we

exist in more than a biological one a

mod you know I'm not disagreeing with

you or the author

that you quoted but I think in terms of

what will actually generate you know a

humane and peaceful coexistence will

come from the structural change

illuminating those elements of our

biology such as even the prefrontal

cortex you know there's a great general

duality with our lower reptilian limbic

system and the fight-or-flight response

the stress response and all the and all

of the chemicals that go through our

system when we're stressed and if you

look carefully to our society today we

everyone's in such a state of scarcity

and stress and they're in debt and

they're struggling to survive with 63

American excuse me sixty-three percent

of Americans with less than $1,000 in


that's an incredible position of stress

for their future and that's why I think

that they keep reacting in more

primitive ways as opposed to a relaxed

setting where we're more prop more prone

to ping our prefrontal cortex and the

thoughtfulness and our restriction our

sense of restraint and and so on so

there's definitely a biological level to

it but get into the structuralism if you

read academic work on structural with

you out for a second sure in case you

spend a lot of time talking about

epigenetics yeah that is basically

determines whether genes are expressed

or repressed and I think that what we

have now is an economic system that

represses a lot of the good stuff that

we're wired to do yeah I think what

you're describing as an envisioning is

one that will basically unleash and

allow those to be bloom again they're

already there as much as they can be

where they haven't been destroyed you

know I used to be involved very much in

positive psychology and I learned that

they need some cultures some percent

like particularly like in some Asian

cultures where they encourage repression

of expression of emotion some people

they're their cadavers are found to have

that their smile muscles have massively

atrophied Wow

but I think the same thing can also be

the case for some aspects of compassion

and empathy hearing and environmental

consciousness and the sense of weenus

that I have go essential to where we

need to be going I couldn't agree more I

you touch upon a lot of great issues

that we could expand upon in the book

for example I talked about these

sociological studies psychological

studies that were done on people that

get more and more wealth as they age

basically the wealthy what does their

psychology and study compared to the

average person and the more wealth and

money in influence that people get the

more apathetic they tend to become the

less they give to charity in percentage

terms the less they can recognize

empathic faces of others they can't

relate to people anymore because of this

effectively you know it's a systemic

thing and it's not everyone's vulnerable

to it but on average is statistically

there's a there's a reason why the

Ebenezer Scrooge cliche is what it is

it's even more terrifying as an aside

when you realize that the the big wigs

of business are also the big powers

power influence is in government which

also begins to explain why and this is

again going back to a structuralism why

you see such an indifference why you see

the trickle-down philosophy why you see

you know administration's thinking that

if they give all the money to the upper

1% it's going to go into their big

businesses and that it trickles down to

more jobs so the whole thing is

structurally elitist ok so let's get

into that structuralism I kind of what

from what I understand your your idea of

structuralism and I want you to explain

it specialism sets up a way that people

grow up and develop in a culture so that

they just think away it makes me think

and especially what we were talking

before we started recording it makes me

think of Skinner's book beyond freedom

and dignity he described how somebody

born in a prison would think that living

in a prison was freedom yeah yeah yeah

well you look at well you look at for

example I've always been fascinated by

by terrible anomalies in cultures such

as feral children and use if you study

the research that's been done on kids

that were say locked in a room for 10

years and they don't know anything

outside of that room and their

development and they of course they've

passed I mean another kind of

structuralism does relate to biology but

we won't go into that one because there

is a mesh

the two for example if you don't learn

the language because of your biological

structure if you don't learn language

before a certain age very low odds

you're ever gonna learn language as an

adult so anyway but let's let's step

back so structuralism in most academic

literature they separate the idea

between structural and rational which is

a false duality like most dualities we

hear about the rational idea is that

human beings have freewill to extend

that they can transcend the structural

influences and incentives and culture

effectively that they're in and that

that that view is actually still a lot

more prevalent than you would believe

because when you look at the structural

phenomenon how can we possibly know

anything outside of what we've been

taught every word that comes out of my

mouth has been taught while I might have

novel ways of communicating at least the

appearance of others the idea is that

I'm putting forward our amalgamations

and everything I've also been taught so

the structural phenomenon I think Gandhi

put it best there's a guy named Johan


he's from the Gandhi Institute like I

source him in the book he actually has a

lot of great ideas he's the one that

coined the term structural violence

which we can talk about also in a moment

he does a great job of describing

Gandhi's perspective which you'll find

actually carried over into Martin Luther

King jr. even a lot of the these civil

rights leaders of the time really

understood the structures of American

society where the really the negative

forces that were keeping everything

oppressed especially the Black Power

movement the Black Panthers and so on

Stokely Carmichael anyway but so yeah

Johan galtung describes Gandhi as a

structuralist because Gandhi would

always talk about how colonialism was a

structure and you couldn't just put

blame on the people that were you know

agents of the British East India Company

beating these serves serfs and

effectively slaves really when when they

were taking India over and they weren't

to be blamed holistically they couldn't

just put the blame on them which stands

in direct contrast to the other way our

legal system works the way we we get so

irate with people because of their

individual behavior because the fact is

it's not their individual behavior

they're they're appeasing a structure

just like in the military the military

you have people raised in great

church-going families they've

great moral ethic that never hurt

anything in their life and then suddenly

because their government says they have

to go defend themselves or defend their

country they're put into a rigid

structure that trains them very

specifically to develop complete apathy

for the enemy and complete you know an

empathy for their group and then as a

group together they go out and I really

make murder other human beings without

even thinking twice about it and men in

many cases without even having negative

consequences now going back to your

moral argument in terms of biology

obviously killing people is not natural

to the human condition so I think

there's actually good gravity to talk

you know about the fact that people do

have you know great stress when they

experience that type of thing but but

that's the structure the structuralism

is dictating what people's behaviors are

incentivizing them and in terms of

economics that's my big focus because

how can we possibly envision a world

that is ecologically sustainable and

develops peaceful coexistence

deliberately where people are trying to

work together and respect each other

when the economic structure rewards the

exact opposite so as I said earlier you

have consumerism the only thing that

keeps our economy going is people

increasingly buying and selling and if

they don't if everyone was satisfied for

one day free oh and not the type of food

I'm talking about this constant you know

buying of gadgets and in the throwaway

culture and the planned obsolescence and

and the fact that we don't make things

to last anymore you can actually go into

textbooks in 20th century economic

theory where industrialists we're

talking about yes we have to put a

expiration date on everything that we

make so people will keep buying charles

kettering you have all of these great

industrials talking about that if we

don't have a consumption Society so what

does that mean it means the structure is creating an indifferent culture has it's created a completely different culture now that is completely out of line with nature because we can't sustain this type of production and consumption and waste

Rob but one of my favorite people to

cite in a conversation like this is

Paulo Freire who wrote let it go get the

the oppressed you familiar with him I've

heard about text actually really simple

description of what he has to say this

is a guy who wrote a book in 1978 he's a

portuguese guy he was thrown out of

portugal because of his revolutionary

ideas millions sold already what he said

and the title is pedagogy of the

oppressed not exactly a best-seller type

title but what he said is that the

oppressed and the oppressors are both

victims yes I think there are victims of

this structuralism that you're


absolutely Danny says that the

oppressors cannot change things only the

oppressed can and in in the model you're

describing who were the oppressed

I'd say the the you know the ultimately

ultimately the lower middle and lower

class excuse me you know 60% of humanity

by an ethical poverty line done by Peter

Edwards of newcastle university puts 60%

of humanity in poverty and it's those

that effectively experience the ravages

of socio-economic inequality which isn't

just you know a lack of food or lack of

resources it's also the social stress

the psychosocial stress that when we see

people that have more than us it

pollutes our psychology so that's as

just as caustic as well because it

damages the arteries it's producing

cortisol and all these stress hormones

that's why if you look at the work of

say Richard Wilkinson and Kate Pickett a

lot of other epidemiologists they talk

about how unmoor excuse me the more

unequal a society the more unhealthy it

is in terms of life expectancy math

literacy there's more infant mortality

there's more violence more homicides

there's lack of trust there's more

obesity and it's you fascinating to see

how detrimental again this class social

stratification phenomenon is so it's

those are the lower rooms that are the

oppressed it's a gradient of course you

know it's there's no fine line because

in a lot of ways the oppressor if you

want to get systems about you want to

think systemically about it the road

systems go for it well we're all the

oppressor though and I don't because

there isn't really that duality every

time I engage in an active trade or a

business whatever filmmaking

what-have-you I'm participating in the

value system participating in the in the

practice of trade strategizing dominance

and you just amplify that process

outward and suddenly you have big giant

investment banks doing damaging affairs

such as what led to the 2008 you know

housing collapse that led to 46,000

suicides in 60 countries along with

500,000 that didn't get medical

attention that had cancer that died

prematurely based on statistics of

cancer and a whole spectrum of other

disorders that come that come from this

type of indifference so we're all

participating as the oppressor in the

indifferent social system that concept

and so basically and as long as you're

going along with the system you're part

of the oppression process yeah so okay

I'm taking the bite the debate

you've mentioned trade strategizing

dominance at least twice yep what is it

well if you go back to the Neolithic

Revolution there's some really great

anthropologists that that tamiya to my

surprise as I read about this really

solidify the difference between cultures

really solidify the difference between

an egalitarian group that respects

nature and that lives in harmony and

doesn't have a materialistic bias which

is of course geographically determined

away I'm if you're a nomadic

hunter-gatherer you're not gonna be

lugging a bunch of widgets around

because it's gonna weigh you down so

there's there are other reasons and

again in that structuralism geographical

determinism is also a structure that

developed agrarian society but anyway I

won't go on those tangents when you look

at say uh I think excuse me I think was


Tim Ingold who put it best he said something the effect I'm not to paraphrase excitement of me is that you went from group trust in the oldest think primi elliptic Society to to trade dominance and a lack of friendship

for example first whatever it's called

when people first meet indigenous

cultures a lot of traders in the 20th

century a lot of excuse me a lot of

explorers they need an indigenous tribe

in the Amazon and they would give it and

the Amazonian folks were very kind and

they would give them something and the

and the and the Westerners in most cases

they would give them

something back so it's reciprocal and

the the indigenous tribe was offended by

that because when you have reciprocal

trade it rejects the idea of the

gift-giving economic model which is what

Neolithic society had before the

Neolithic Revolution there was a gift

yeah a gift economy and when you engage

in reciprocal behavior it's a completely

different sense than when you give

without the interest in reciprocation at

least not directly

as we know throughout agrarian

capitalist the agrarian capitalist

evolution which is capitalism is

directly tied to the geographical

determinism of what we have what

happened in the agrarian revolution with

the settlement and so on so I'm sorry I

didn't explain this as well as I should

address I don't have the quotes in front

of me but they're really brilliant but

effectively trade strategy and dominance

is the root of everything that people do

every time they think about getting

getting up when they go to the grocery

store everything that they're doing in

their self-preservation is a form of

train strategizing and dominance is the

ultimate side effect so when two

businessmen get together it's not about

finding mutual balance and concern it's

about one making sure they're getting as

much as they can at the expense of the

other and if you have a leverage such as

say a boss and a person that's just out

of college with lots of debt that's a

better example so the boss can can

lowball there their wage or salary

because the person is so struggling we

can it doesn't even up to be someone out

of college just be somebody that has a

lot of debt someone as a family member

dies someone has an insurance problem

someone who has all sorts of medical

debt and they are going to be put in a

position of subservience to the

dominance of others that are going to

hire them so and that's the fabric of

our society in the chain reaction that

we see you know I talk to a lot of

libertarian folks and people that you

know want to believe this kind of mutual

exchange idea you know if you're

familiar with earlier like John Stuart

Mill or the utilitarian s philosophies

basically long story short they look at

it all as an abstraction of trade and it

doesn't matter what you're what you're

suffering from it doesn't matter what

has happened in your history or the

limitations you have financially the

moment you go into a circumstance to

trade even if you're a prostitute

prostitute selling your body that act

must be of mutual interest this is how

Fedak and sad our theory of economy is

in terms of the Ute of human behavior

rational economic man is considered one

that every single trade that exists

between two parties must be to the

mutual benefit which is partially true

but that doesn't account for the

systemic unfolding of all the things

that happen that lead to countless

levels of abuse and and all of the

dispute and in general in humanity we

see through this systems that make sense

some not only makes sense but the other

side of it is is that this economy model

that you mentioned which is the lot of

indigenous people functionally yep it's

a different system it's a system that I

think is longer term and the whole

concept of Systems Theory is based on

the idea that everything is connected

there are patterns of interaction that

are macro and micro ok though I give a

gift to you and you don't give me

anything back because there are lots of

good reasons for me to give you a gift

and doing good in the world is a gift

and it's a part of contributing to that

big Gaia system really yep that that is

so far away from what I think

libertarians tend to think about and I

think it's like a real problem in front

of having such a restricted really very

narrow view of what matters absolutely

it really is nonsense I mean what Grint

what better way to you know going back

to the oppressed and the oppressor in

that dynamic what better way to

condition a culture to think that

everything is their fault once again

because there are structural limitations

if you have a lot of money you have a

very high probability of maintaining

more money more money

you also have political advantages based

in the way this system is organized

because big money and business has


ever since ever since the Neolithic Revolution unfolded it was all a concentration of

wealth and power from that moment on as as neuroscientist and anthropologist Robert Sapolsky says it was the invention of poverty in the post Neolithic Revolution it was the introduction of surplus that inevitably led to the imbalance of surplus, meaning that you had tons of people with no money and nothing and then a small select few and I'm

sorry for this tangent but there's a guy

named Gregory Gregory Clark he's an

excellent historian and he talks about

what he calls the Malthusian trap and

one great myth that we see in this sort

of idea that you know trade leads to

progress in society which to some degree

it has because that's been the only tool

we've been able to rationalize but one

thing that people don't realize is that

they by the 18th century people were

living pretty much in the same with the

same lifespan and the same in fact

probably degraded actually with the same

minimalism and poverty more so actually

than they were in the Stone Age

so in other words there hasn't it wasn't

hardly any progress in the what's called

the Malthusian trap from the post

Neolithic Revolution from excuse me for

the Neolithic Revolution to the 18th

century so if you look at the actual

incomes of people who hadn't changed now

what did change was massive

stratification with a very small group

of rich monarchs and of course through

feudalism and all of that and then they

just a massive subculture of people that

had very little very it wasn't until the

Industrial Revolution that the

efficiency sparked it's called the great

divergence and that has been the ticket

for us okay the great divergence first

of exactly what is the Newseum trap

you've referred to clarify that

Malthusian trap is a period since the

Neolithic Revolution where incomes and

population were linked where you'd have

basically you know people would produce

more population would increase slightly

but there were limitations to how much

income in other words how many resources

people could take its defined loosely as

income in economic terms but basically

resources it's named after Thomas

Malthus because if you remember Thomas

Malthus he said that poor should die and

that we shouldn't care about you know we

should realize that this is just nature

flexing its muscles that we have to have

constant and periodic depopulation so

it's called the Malthusian trap because

you have this oscillation between income

or resource

available and population growth so

population grows up and then people die

off and and that was very consistent and

very uh unfortunate because you know it

led to a whole lot of bad economic

theories I think the majority of the

economic philosophies we see today are

still rooted in that philosophy and then

you combine that with social Darwinism

and other bastardized concepts because

Darwin never promoted some loose

arbitrary survival of the fittest in

fact he talks about collaboration

constantly because collaboration is an

element of our of our Fitness you know

just because someone can be stronger

than you doesn't mean that suddenly

through evolution excuse me if doesn't

suddenly through a some kind of

Darwinian extraction they should be

dominant over you you talked frequently

about that how competition and people

working together would increase the

evolutionary Fitness probably far

greater in fact and the competitive

where did he talk about you see it you

see it he it was the book that was

written after Origin of Species it's not

an Origin of Species to catch me off

guard with that one but there is he

mentions competition constantly the idea

there other theorists have talked about

this at length too is nothing new bumps

and a lot of people still unfortunately

out there still kind of gravitated

towards this dominance thing and that

you know the weak die and and the strong

and the effectively the rich survive and

that's the way it's supposed to be so

going back to the Malthusian trap it's

just that oscillation of and that you

could say it's natural because there

really wasn't any kind of oomph to our

intellectual and technological

development until the 18th century late

18th century early 19th century upon the

Industrial Revolution and that if you

look at core math the great divergence

yeah and that's effectively you know

that is really basically the increase in

efficiency you see people like Ray

Kurzweil talk about that now we've had

this exponential increase in in

efficiency and productivity Jeremy

Rifkin another great theorist that talks

about the similar phenomenon of course

Buckminster Fuller so again this is

nothing new but it's very important that

historically people understand that that

were in a different place now and the

ability for us to jet

abundance to meet human needs to end

poverty and against society on a

completely different trajectory in terms

of how it organizes itself and in terms

how it again aligns with nature because


we have to break the link between labor and income and we have to develop new systems of participatory economics where people can contribute in a way that they never had before absent corporations and start to develop effectively a a true democratic participatory economics I don't know the

better way to say it than that

that's the sad reality is everyone

thinks you're talking about communism

you talk about something like that and

that's historically speaking there's no

relationship whatsoever you know I'll

just throw this out there for those that

you know socialists they hate socialism

for whatever nonsense they've they've

been taught and their propaganda

what exactly I'm not advocating

historical socialism where people sit in

the boardroom and plan what the society

is going to do now we have the ability

to create a a digital network where

people can actually work together in a

way that controls quote the means of

production socialism is defined in its

most principled definition as the public

Democratic control of the means of

production which is really the ideal of

any kind of democratic society where you

actually participate in what the society

is doing and sadly there are illusions

of democracies even in America and you

go back to the writings there's another

great book in fact I can kind of

paraphrase this quote called business as

a system of power I've been talking

about this a lot recently I just did a

talk in Washington partly on it it's

written in 1943 that was the convergence

conference yeah how was it I was ok I

mean that was surrounded by a lot of

identity politics and people working for

you know trying to elevate their parties

and find new ways to communicate party

related themes and to me that is a lost

cause at this stage until you get a

consensus about what our economy is

supposed to be so I I was a little bit

of a fish out of water there but I

digress so that's ok um you you

mentioned another concept that I wanted

to make sure that we cover before we

move on from this whole area



there was structural violence yeah yeah yes okay so structural violence again

Johan galtung coined this and it when I first learned about it I was like well

that seems like an abstract idea it's hard to pinpoint and then the more you

learn about it the more you look at

statistics the more you begin to realize

that it is the leading cause of death on

this planet more than any dictator or

disease has killed an abstraction I

should say because disease is a part of

structural violence when you look at

what's happening in say in Yemen right

now with hundreds of thousands of

children that are sick you can't

separate that phenomenon from the long

term colonial istic oppression and

violence that's been generated because

in part of US interests but also other

other other national other nations that

have have worked to destabilize this

this community but that's that that's

more of a complicated example let's step

back and just look at poverty


poverty is really the leading cause of death on this planet it's a systemic outcome as

we know from the Neolithic Revolution poverty did not exist before it's a product of a given this trade

strategising dominates self-interest

competitive a gaming strategy that is

built into capitalism and poverty if you

look at it actually let's step back to

this study that was done a couple

18 million people a year-- a couple of holocausts

structural violence is the result of socioeconomic inequality.

decades ago and people can punch it up I

can't remember the author's names but

it's probably the most definitive study

the empirical table of structural

violence people can find this and it's a

study of poverty and it concluded that

due to poverty and socio-economic

inequality things that are preventable

18 million people die every year that

numbers probably kind of low at this

stage given how old that study was done

so that's 18 million people dying

unnecessarily of all of the poverty

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Rob Kall is the host of the Rob Kall Bottom Up Radio Show, WNJC 1360, where he discusses how the bottom up mind and bottom up revolution are reaching different areas of the world, of life, of politics, business, society and anywhere else.

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