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The Venus Flytrap - Brandy Hume

For Brandy Hume and her followers

Updated: 2013/08/03


1. A "logical" argument?


It has been argued that Brandy Hume refuted every argument which was raised by critics of The Venus Project. According to a supporter of The Venus Project, she refuted not only Popper and Hayek's books which were quoted in the body many times, but also some basic theorems of economics like that "wage is equal to marginal product of labor." Before she announced she would refute my critisms in her radio show, thankfully I had an opportunity to talk with this great economist about The Venus Project. Our final subject was Fresco's claim as below.

A resource-based economy would utilize existing resources from the land and sea, physical equipment, industrial plants, etc. to enhance the lives of the total population. In an economy based on resources rather than money, we could easily produce all of the necessities of life and provide a high standard of living for all.

Consider the following examples: At the beginning of World War II the US had a mere 600 or so first-class fighting aircraft. We rapidly overcame this short supply by turning out more than 90,000 planes a year. The question at the start of World War II was: Do we have enough funds to produce the required implements of war? The answer was no, we did not have enough money, nor did we have enough gold; but we did have more than enough resources. It was the available resources that enabled the US to achieve the high production and efficiency required to win the war. Unfortunately this is only considered in times of war.

What Fresco is arguing is obvious. On which basis he is arguing it is even more obvious. (Figure out by yourself. And you must remember it, so it would be more fun.) I already dealt with this argument at 3-10~13. But Robert P. Murphy completely analyzed this argument in his essay Venus Needs Some Austrians more detailedly a long time ago, so I could just quote his text.

Let's think about what the writers mean by saying the United States at the start of World War II "did not have enough money" to pay for the war effort. Presumably, they mean that the American public would never have consented to the explicit taxation (and government borrowing) that would have been necessary for Uncle Sam to persuade resource owners to voluntarily hand over their items to the government.

So what did the federal government do to overcome this "lack of money"? Why, it simply forced American citizens to scale back their own consumption, in order to free up scarce resources and redirect them into war production. Specifically, the Federal Reserve created money out of thin air to lend to the government. At the same time, the government physically threatened anyone who dared to raise prices above the permissible limits. The result was that the fraction of total output going to the private sector drastically fell during the war years.

I showed this essay to her. And this was her answer.

We debunked that article 2yrs ago on V-Radio. FYI - That is an absolutely horrid article; I've heard more relevant arguments from ancaps on YT. Using the "Costco" example to arrive at "in a truly free world, where we all respected each other's property" is a complete fallacy. "Did World War II Disprove the Existence of Scarcity?" No. It just proves that we have the technical ABILITY to produce abundance, if managed correctly. The writer clearly doesn't understand the RBE any more than you do.

Her answer was almost unbelievable to me. I had no choice but to ask again.

So, if the government could make 90,000 planes by forcing American citizens to scale back their own consumption through inflation, is it means that "we have the technical ABILITY to produce abundance"? Did you understand what the point of the subject was? I mean, did you even understand what was the point of Fresco? He said that "we did not have enough money, nor did we have enough gold; but we did have more than enough resources." And it was the point which Murphy rebutted.

And she said.

No, your argument is a straw man. The point is that if we managed our resources intelligently from the GET-GO then we could produce an abundance of EFFICIENT goods without forcing anyone to do anything, or controlling their consumption. It's not about the "planes" or duplicating that exact scenario, obviously.

I'm sure you would not be surprised to know that I gave up arguing with her right after this answer. Of course, Fresco's claim is that "if we managed our resources intelligently from the GET-GO then we could produce an abundance of EFFICIENT goods without forcing anyone to do anything, or controlling their consumption" ultimately. (Who doesn't know it?) What Murphy and I dealt with is not his claim but his basis. We just refuted an argument that the fact America could produce 90,000 planes shows "we did not have enough money, but we did have more than enough resources." We just pointed out that the resources were not sufficient, and the resources which American government used to produce planes had to be recruited from production lines of consumer goods for the public.

How on earth can World War II prove that "we have the technical ABILITY to produce abundance"? Obviously American government didn't have ability to produce 90,000 planes without forcing American citizens to scale back their own consumption. And, as we have experienced, governments didn't have ability to do anything without forcing their citizens to scale back their own consumption. Perhaps, perhaps Fresco (or what she calls "we") really can produce abundance without forcing anyone to do anything, or controlling their consumption. But how can World War II show it? How can the fact that governments couldn't do anything without forcing citizens to scale back their own consumption show that Fresco or "we" can produce abundance without forcing anyone to do anything?

Certainly her logic is strange. Was this her temporal mistake happen because of her stubbornness? As I have experienced, it wasn't. It's even impossible, because she definitely argued that she debunked that article 2yrs ago. Finally, I advised to her that "when you're wrong, you have to admit it." And this was her last word.

Let's get one thing straight right now: I have no problem admitting when I'm wrong. TVP wasn't my idea, so if somebody debunks it, big deal. But so far you haven't, so there is no reason for me to admit I'm wrong unless I AM. The moment? You make one argument that is correct and makes SENSE, we will be on the same page.

Unfortunately her interpretation about Fresco's point is definitely wrong. In the FAQ page of official website of The Venus Project, Fresco states his fallacies much more clearly answering to fifth question: "elaborate a bit, if you will, on your views regarding money."

If all the money in the world were destroyed, as long as we have sufficient arable land, the factories, the necessary resources, and technical personnel, we could build anything and even supply an abundance. During the Depression, there were vacuum cleaners in store windows and automobiles in car lots. The Earth was still the same place. There was just no money in people's wallets and very little purchasing power. At the beginning of World War II, the U.S. had about 600 first-class fighting aircraft. We rapidly overcame this short-supply by turning out over 90,000 planes per year. The question at the start of World War II was: Do we have enough funds to produce the required implements of war? The answer was No, we did not have enough money or gold, but we did have more than enough resources. It was the available resources and technical personnel that enabled the U.S. to achieve the production and efficiency required to win the war.

It would be unnecessary to analyze common fallacies about The Great Depression which Fresco accepts uncritically. You can just refer to Appendix B, or many quotations I introduced in the Closing Remark. Anyway, Fresco clearly said: "If all the money in the world were destroyed, as long as we have sufficient arable land, the factories, the necessary resources, and technical personnel, we could build anything and even supply an abundance." A fallacy would not be able to be stated more clearly than this. Practically he's arguing we can supply anything containing 90,000 planes just by abolishing money and using abundant resources without forcing people to scale back their consumption. And, more importantly he's arguing that we actually did it during World War II. In short, he's arguing that "World War II Disproved the Existence of Scarcity" of resources.

I have not seen her radio show and I would not see. If she has mental power to make an obvious pointing out that the fact American government could get armaments through inflation doesn't show abundance of resources to a straw man, it would not be surprising even if she can pick on every sentence in my text. It may be fun to mock her ridiculous nonsenses one by one, but it would not be very productive enough to invest our time and effort. Anyway, to those who can think rationally, it would not be very hard to realize who is saying right between her and me.



2. Piecemeal change vs Non-piecemeal change


But some of Brandy Hume's arguments need to be examined very carefully. I chiefly dealt with problems which will happen in The Venus Project during the transition period. And the problems were based on judgment about resource-based economy in transition period as below.

5-9 Fresco's plan about transition period is vague. Despite its importance, he never says about it in detail. Fortunately one paragraph which I already quoted in chapter 4 seem to give enough clue. Fresco certainly said. "As to the need for government, only during the transition from a monetary based society to a cybernated high-technological resource based economy of common heritage would it be necessary." 5-10 He continued, "They will not dictate the policies or have any more advantage than other people. Their job will be to carry out the restoration of the environment to near natural conditions as possible on land and in the sea. They will also economically layout the most efficient way to manage transportation, agriculture, city planning, and production." 5-11 Obviously there is no reason for current corrupted governments to be a provisional government which pursues resource-based economy. So despite Fresco's so much gibberish which emphasize that The Venus Project is a process of evolution rather than revolution, at least one political revolution seem to necessary. And because one of the purposes of the government is city planning, it seems that this revolution would happen before new cities are fully constructed.

Readers can also refer to 5-12~15 and Note [35]. But according to Brandy Hume, this judgment is wrong. She quotes Fresco's paragraph as below.

As these new communities develop and become more widely accepted, they may very well form the basis of a new civilization, preferably through the process of evolution rather than revolution.[...] The Venus Project does not advocate dissolving the existing free-enterprise system. We believe it will eventually evolve towards a resource-based society of common heritage in due course. All that The Venus Project offers is an alternative approach for your consideration.

There is a thing we have to notice when dealing with Fresco's "plan." It's true that he answers to questions like "how can we go here to there?" But he never says a word about how can we let current money economy be changed into his resource-based economy. His every plan is related to how we can make people accept resource-based economy more easily, or more naturally. Most of them are related to "social and economic breakdown" which will happen soon and his "experimental city." After emphasize that people will accept The Venus Project voluntarily he concludes that resource-based economy would be achieved through the process of evolution rather than revolution. Important informations like that "The Venus Project does not advocate dissolving the existing free-enterprise system" are mentioned only shortly as a part of his explanation about experimental city.

Never mind unbelievably inappropriate usage of language which contrasts "voluntariness" with revolution, how can we understand the sentence, "The Venus Project does not advocate dissolving the existing free-enterprise system," in this context? Does it mean we should not try to dissolve existing free-enterprise system in order to realize resource-based economy in any case? Fresco's sentence may mean that we should not try to dissolve free-enterprise system right now. But does it apply to the case when "social and economic breakdown" happen and everyone is prepared to accept The Venus Project voluntarily?

The reason why it's hard to think that Fresco's words have a meaning is because he's using vague language. We have heard many nonsenses which use the term "evolution," for example, "capitalism evolves into socialism," etc., etc. The term "evolution" has been used to describe processes which are, to borrow Demian's famous metaphor, same to the process of a bird hatching from its egg. Fresco might just want to point out that "we should not break the egg before the bird grows fully." The problem is that as far as a social system is concerned, only specific actions of people can complete a change. Enterprisers may be able to make a condition for the change. But there is no reason for enterprisers to change themselves into production facilities for resource-based economy. Someone must act to make a change in due course. But how can such a goal-oriented action be related with an "evolution?"

The term "evolution" is commonly used in order to imply that certain change is natural, and even destined. But it's just an image, and not a thing which has objective meaning. I thought that Fresco's declaration doesn't have any meaning until the term "evolution" be defined clearly, asked her again exactly how Fresco's plan is different from revolution. And this was her answer.

For that last time... we do not CONTROL whether or not there is a revolution. We can only offer an alternative for people to choose INSTEAD of a revolution, so it can happen voluntarily, through EVOLUTION. It's not nearly as complicated as you're making it.

This sentence tells us more about Brandy Hume's own mental problem than The Venus Project. First, she says about "an alternative for people to choose INSTEAD of a revolution" by borrowing Fresco's expression, but she does not even recognize exactly what the "alternative" was. (Fresco's "an alternative approach" only means an alternative to capitalism and market economy in context. It does not mean an alternative to revolution.) Second, she did not notice that the ones who made everything complicated by using vague languages like "evolution" are Fresco and herself, and even now when she's complaining about the complicatedness she fails to abandon the "unscientific" languages which made it. Third, by trying to distinguish "evolution" from "revolution" based on the ridiculous criteria like "voluntariness," she dives into the most fatal fallacy which was caused by the inappropriate usages of language.

Think about this. Was every revolution an involuntary revolution? Or, was every revolution a violent revolution? Let us assume that every person accepted to abolish current system and start new system right now. Is it something else than a "revolution?" At first, when we say that a society "evolves," what does it mean? Does it have a clear, determinate meaning?

Here, I'll abolish terms like "revolution," "evolution," etc., etc. As Jacque Fresco said, we need to use scientific language if we want to do scientific conversation about something. The problem we are facing is just a choice between piecemeal change of existing system and non-piecemeal change of existing system. These two phrase are not perfect. But they would be much better than unbelievably vague words like "evolution." (I just changed some terms into much more determinate form. I did not change my position about something. The most of my criticisms about resource-based economy in transition period are valid as long as the transition doesn't happen with piecemeal method no matter whether it involves violation or not. At first, the term "revolution" did not mean anything else than a non-piecemeal change to me.)

Now let's eliminate meaningless parts contain words like "voluntarily" or "revolution" from Brandy Hume's sentence, and replace the term "revolution" with "non-piecemeal change of existing system." She said. "We can only offer an alternative for people to choose INSTEAD of a Non-Piecemeal change of existing system." If this is not she tried to say, her every argument about transition period is meaningless, and we would be able to simply ignore it.

But when Jacque Fresco provided an alternative which people can choose instead of non-piecemeal change of existing system? As we have seen, what we know is that Fresco never provided it in any of his videos, books, homepages. His every specific plan is about experimental city. It's true that he sometimes gives us vague forecasts or expectations like "we believe it will eventually evolve towards a resource-based society of common heritage in due course," "As these new communities develop and become more widely accepted, they may very well form the basis of a new civilization, preferably through the process of evolution rather than revolution." But where is an "alternative?" These are never "an alternative for people to choose INSTEAD of a Non-Piecemeal change of existing system." They are, at best, no more than expectations that a piecemeal change would happen.

There exists a piecemeal method to achieve resource-based economy. I already dealt with it at 8-36~38. Instead try to change the whole society overall, they can start the experiment in relatively small area, and gradually increase its size. (Because Fresco's words are so vague, it's true that his experimental city plan can be interpreted in this way.) One thing which must be emphasized is that currently this is the only piecemeal way to achieve resource-based economy. Fresco denied democracy. He dismissed every piecemeal method we know, and unlike Brandy Hume's claim, he didn't provide any alternative method.

Again, arguments like that enterprises would "dissolve themselves" through automation, so capitalism would naturally "evolve" into resource-based economy are beneath notice. They forgot the truth that only specific actions of human can complete a change. As long as automation of enterprises does not construct Fresco's cities automatically, they are no more than disguised another "non-piecemeal change of existing system." The criticisms I made in chapter 5, 6 and 7 about transition period do not apply only to revolutions which involve violation. They apply to that kind of evolutions, too.

The term revolution meant "replacement of the ruling class by the subjugated class" when it is used in the narrow sense, perhaps it's the reason why some people think that such an evolution theories are different from revolution. They chiefly suggest "neglecting" instead of "action" as a mean of defeating enemies. Instead of defeating enemies through revolution, they simply want to wait until the absolute natural laws kill their enemy. Anyway, in our context, revolution just means a "goal-oriented action which changes a system suddenly." If we have to act in due course to follow Fresco's plan, it's a revolution.

Furthermore, there is a certain weak point in these kinds of evolution theories. It's that we can die earlier than our enemies. Neglecting, especially when "social and economic breakdown" is happening and everything is getting worse, sometimes requires bigger conviction and determination than action. Those who chose neglecting because it looks easier than action would better have some determination about hardship they will have to overcome.

Please don't think that collectivists' charitable non-profit institutions would survive at least longer than enterprises which pursue profit in social and economic breakdown. Not only enterprises face danger of existence in economic crisis. Non-profit institutions having for its aim the production of foods and to supply foods for free would face same trouble with food production enterprises. Non-profit institutions having for its aim to construct houses for free would face same even bigger trouble with construction enterprises. An idea to make non-profit institutions and let them replace failing enterprises is actually based on ridiculous assumption that the non-profit institutions can win competition against enterprises which pursue profit at least in economic crisis. [1] Such nonsenses which don't even sound plausible don't deserve serious consideration.

If Brandy Hume's plan was making charitable non-profit institutions replace enterprises by taking advantage of economic breakdown gradually, it's true that it can be a sort of piecemeal change. The problem is that there is no reality in this plan. If you believe that you can make non-profit institutions which can be maintained while providing goods for free, and even be able to expend their size rapidly through new investments, make it right now. If you don't have enough money, get a loan. If they really have such a great productivity, it would not even hard to pay back principal and interest by selling some of the products. Why The Venus Project never tries it? Isn't it because it knows that it doesn't have ability to do it?

Anyway Jacque Fresco has never been expressed his plan in this way. While there are few reasons for us to believe that this is exactly Fresco's plan, there are quite a few reasons to believe that this is not his plan. Fresco said about "government" which needs "only during the transition." He argued that "their job will be to carry out the restoration of the environment to near natural conditions as possible on land and in the sea." It's true that Fresco's "government" can be interpreted as about his charitable non-profit institutions or cities. But currently this interpretation is less persuasive than any other interpretations we have dealt with.



3. Practical matters


But Fresco's vague words can be interpreted in any way. Perhaps he may really want to achieve resource-based economy with piecemeal method. If then, is it mean that Fresco is innocence? Did I just attack a scarecrow?

How many of supporters of The Venus Project know that "we should not try to dissolve enterprise system?" And how many of them know that "in any case, no matter how big economic and social pain are, no matter how much they convince the success of The Venus Project, they should not try to dissolve enterprise system?" We should not just focus on activists. Among the potential supporters of The Venus Project, there are many people who learn about The Venus Project only from major videos such as Zeitgeist series. How many of them know that "resource-based economy can only be achieved through piecemeal method?"

If the ignorance of supporters of The Venus Project was accidental, blaming Fresco in reference to it would be absurd. As Brandy Hume said, I should only deal with Fresco's arguments and should not deal with his supporters' arguments. The problem is that it's not very accidental. Most people couldn't think up anything but revolution after they watch videos which attack every piecemeal methods of change we know and provide an "alternative" only can be applied after we change the whole society. And it was predictable result. Jacque Fresco and Peter Joseph could easily prevent this by putting a part which emphasizes that The Venus Project never supports revolutionary methods in their videos. But they never did it. Even when it became obvious that most people who watched their video are thinking that The Venus Project needs a revolution Jacque Fresco and Peter Joseph didn't seem to care about it.

In every homepage and book which introduces The Venus Project, exactly how we can change money economy into resource-based economy was thoroughly kept secret. We had to hear only vague explanations like "we believe it will eventually evolve towards a resource-based society of common heritage in due course," not knowing about his specific plan. Perhaps it may be true that I have critical misconception about Fresco's plan. But if even the most of The Venus Project have same "misconception," and Fresco acted like he doesn't care about it even though he clearly knew that such a "critical" misconception is happening (Again, Fresco could clean out such a misconception easily by opposing radical attempts clearly in his later videos.) Who has the problem?

Why Fresco and his elite supporters are so indifferent about the risk which they made by themselves? Why the "critical" fallacy is accepted as "critical" only when critics of The Venus Project have it? If "social and economic breakdown" would happen someday, it can't not be very serious problem that most of supporters of The Venus Project believe that we can bring a revolution at least after it. Why Fresco and his elite supporters don't try to resolve this crucial misunderstanding? Why there isn’t a single video or essay which emphasizes that we should not try to achieve The Venus Project through revolution?

It was because of its practical dangerousness that I invested much time and effort to rebut The Venus Project. If Jacque Fresco made clear that he doesn't approve any revolutionary method and, for example, he would achieve his goal by making self supporting communities like Israel's kibbutz and expanding its size gradually, I would not even have to write about the main body. I would be satisfied just by making a short comment about The Venus Project that it is based on outdated theory about human nature which was discarded already by recent scientific discoveries and his reasons about the abundance of resources are economically very suspicious. I would invest my time in much more valuable things for myself and public.

(This, to some degree, applies to the case when Fresco's alternative is not a piecemeal method but a neglecting. If Fresco and Peter Joseph clearly emphasized that we should not try to dissolve free enterprises system in any case, I would not even care their silly and unrealistic arguments.)

No matter what is Jacque Fresco's plan, it's true that it presumes that "social and economic breakdown" would happen someday. One may curious why I care about The Venus Project if the breakdown can't happen because of automation anyway. The answer to this question is that as long as we don't abandon the very policies that extended the Great Depression and unemployment, the breakdown itself would happen anytime. I'm not criticizing The Venus Project because I believe that such a breakdown would never happen. If anything, I'm criticizing it exactly because I believe that it can happen with high probability. For The Venus Project is giving wrong interpretation about the crisis we would face, and even more wrong solution.

Brandy Hume couldn't understand my intention, as a result, when I said that "I proved that 'social and economic breakdown' would not happen bc the automation," she could answer as below. (This quotation is masterpiece even among her majestic nonsenses.)

No you didn't. Economic breakdown is *already happening* bc of automation! Automation already HAS cut down on the purchasing power of people! lol. Omg. You're actually arguing that people haven't been displaced by automation? At least the Austrians understand that it costs their job initially, but they argue that it gets replaced in "another sector" (which is BS). Please watch some of Federico Pistono's lectures.

Of course, to the Austrians, it's not simply "argument" that new employment would be made in another sector as much as the amount which was disappeared in a sector. It's a logical conclusion which are derived from the theory of marginal utility. Readers would be able to refer to my essay, Does automation create unemployment? (There is nothing which has to be newly rebutted in Federico Pistono's "lectures." All of them are based on common fallacies which I already rebutted in the essay. It is a depressing fact that at the present date people like Pistono who don't have any degree on economics can pretend to be expert of the unemployment problem.)

Furthermore, Brandy Hume have not noticed that what she's arguing is no more than an interpretation about economic crisis or unemployment. One thing have to be sure is that technocrats containing Jacque Fresco don't have intellectual ability to judge whether the unemployment were occurred because of automation or not. There is nothing to be proud of in their ability to aware the reality. Technocrats argued that unemployment is obviously because of automation even in the 1930s. The "obviousness" turns out to be in only their mind. An analysis which was wrong once can be turned out to be right next time. But it never can be obvious enough to make supporters of The Venus Project such as Brandy Hume acts triumphantly overusing marks like *, ! and abbreviations like Omg, lol. It's a typical feature of ideologists not to be able to distinguish their own theory and a objective fact.

Why we have to use different interpretation to explain similar phenomenons? Whoever would notice that current crisis from which America and the world are suffering is never special if they look back history. There are no characteristics which can distinguish it from The Great Depression and the crisis which Japan experienced during the 1990s. The unemployment of 1930s would happen even if there wasn't any technical progress as long as the very policies that caused unemployment had existed. So does the unemployment we may face in future. Japan chose wrong solutions in depression, and as a result, is still suffering from the depression. As long as many people believe silly arguments like that unemployment happened because automation, same thing would happen in America, too. This is the biggest crisis we are facing.

Brandy Hume's attitude carried away in triumph may not be pretense. It would be an obvious truth like that 1+1 is equal to 2 for her that current economic breakdown and unemployment were because of automation. So when I denied it, she could jump for joy just like she found a "person who argues that 1+1 is not equal to 2." Analysis of this mental which supporters of The Venus Project have would not be a task of economics, but a task of psychology. Why they don't even be able to find their own premise? Anyway, it seems to be definite that Fresco's prejudice removal program is not very effective.



4. Where is the ground?


A groundless declaration can't be refuted logically. If someone declares that "every even number greater than 2 is the sum of two primes," the declaration can be right and can be wrong. Showing that his argument is wrong is not an easy task. Perhaps it may be impossible. But the fact that nobody can refute it doesn't make it true. The problem is that supporters of The Venus Project containing Brandy Hume constantly depend on this kind of declaration.

There are two different measures of efficiency w/regard to this topic: Economic and Scientific. TVP's proposal is to adhere to scientific efficiency, but not at the cost of economic efficiency or utility, but rather in favor of it. By doing what is most scientifically efficient, we an increase productivity and minimize waste, increasing economic efficiency.

Here, she defines an uncertain term "Scientific efficiency." Let's think about this a little. How can we "measure" Scientific efficiency? A process produces goods 3A+2B by using resources 2a+b. Another process produces goods A+3B by using resources 2a+b. Which process do we have to choose? Which one is more efficient scientifically? The answer would differ in accordance with what people prefer between 3A+2B and A+3B. In other word, it would differ in accordance with the size of utility which each goods give to people. But this doesn't belong to science, but belong to economics. We can't compare something's efficiency with other one without economic consideration.

Leaving out whether the term "scientific efficiency" makes sense or not, how can we calculate it? There is no calculation method explained in her blog. She just defined a concept named "scientific efficiency" unclearly, and argued that it would be a valuation basis of various processes. Basically this is Jacque Fresco's trick. Instead of explaining something detailed, he explains them vaguely and gives them plausible names. Then the vague explanations come to look plausible because of the plausible names which were given to it. (Brandy Hume uses this method very well.) But how can we reach the "scientific efficiency?" How can we compare various possible processes with it and judge which is the most efficient scientifically?

One of the differences between former socialist ideologies and The Venus Project is that only The Venus Project had balls to argue that their economic calculation method is better than economic calculation method using money which is used in free market even without giving any alternative economic calculation method. There method is simple. First, they explain what they believe to be imperfect or unfair aspects of free market. Because so many of them are fallacies, free marketeers may want to point out all them. But who can deny that free market is not perfect? The problem is that supporters of The Venus Project assume that their calculation method which never has been explained provides at least higher "scientific efficiency" or something without giving any evidence.

As far as the economic calculation concerned, supporters of The Venus Project are even more serious dreamers than former socialists. They still believe that their economic calculation method would much better than current one just because they know some weaknesses of it even after seeing that socialist countries which had same belief fail. They believe that using magic word "science" on something even they can't calculate would prevent same result.

Superiority of their economic calculation method is not the only thing supporters of The Venus Project assume without any ground. It is assumed that we have enough resources and technologies to make scarcity completely disappear in just a few years. To achieve it, we have to accept Fresco's cities. There are no need for us to let various cities are made and compete with each other in market in order to find more efficient method about cities. (Refer to 15-16~17.) Wise Jacque Fresco already found the greatest method. Fresco is a genius, and though we never have experienced various alternatives, there is no reason to think that there would be a much better design than Fresco's which is so unnecessary specific that actually prevents any fundamentally different designs to be experienced. These assumptions are tacit premises of every supporter of The Venus Project, but never have been proved. The sad truth is that as long as we don't disprove them, they will believe them.

Critics of The Venus Project tried hard to disprove those groundless declarations. But a groundless declaration can be rejected without ground, too. There is no economic calculation method in The Venus Project. If a supporter of The Venus Project argues that their economic calculation method which does not even exist is superior in "scientific efficiency" or in any other aspects, you can accept it as it sounds like — howling nonsense.



5. The way to argue with supporters of The Venus Project


But The Venus Project is consisted of an intricate network of fallacies that mutually support each other. When their unique polylogism adds here, an impregnable fortress is made. It's not impossible to break it with attacks which based on economics. But it takes much time and effort. In consideration of obstinacy which supporters of The Venus Project have that doesn't even try to consider arguments which are based on economics seriously, it would be certainly an inefficient strategy.

I have once pointed out to Brandy Hume that Jacque Fresco and Peter Joseph's alleged 'science' is scientifically wrong. She immediately gave me examples of some experts which Fresco quoted or casted in his stuffs and argued that I believe it is not science just because it's in discord with my thought. Her tone was never less triumphant than the time when she tried to show that economic breakdown is obviously because of automation. I let her know that not only Edward Wilson and Richard Dawkins, but also majority of current geneticists have disproved Jacque Fresco's opinions about human nature and she never said about this subject again. It certainly seemed that she learned this fact for the first time. Opinions and researches of few psychiatrists don't even look very credible who Jacque Fresco and Peter Joseph introduced through their stuffs were everything she know about human nature.

It's not surprising that almost every free marketeer doesn't want to bring up a subject about human nature. They, just like me, would believe that The Venus Project is wrong regardless of human nature. Even I tried to show that the plan of The Venus Project to change human nature by changing environment or education can't success regardless of human nature or its plasticity. Of course, this kind of efforts can be educative. But if our prime purpose is breaking arguments of The Venus Project, perhaps weren't we wasting our energy on a task which could be done easily? Let's hear Steven Pinker's words from his book, Blank Slate.

The romantic notion that all malefactors are depraved on accounta they're deprived has worn thin among experts and laypeople alike. Many psychopaths had difficult lives, of course, but that does not mean that having a difficult life turns one into a psychopath. There is an old joke about two social workers discussing a problematic child: "Johnny came from a broken home." "Yes, Johnny could break any home." Machiavellian personalities can be found in all social classes — there are kleptocrats, robber barons, military dictators, and rogue financiers — and some psychopaths, such as the cannibal Jeffrey Dahmer, have come from decent, upper-middle-class homes. And none of this means that all people who resort to violence or crime are psychopaths, only that some of the worst ones are.]

Psychopaths, as far as we know, cannot be "cured." Indeed, the psychologist Marnie Rice has shown that certain harebrained ideas for therapy, such as boosting their self-esteem and teaching them social skills, can make them even more dangerous. But that does not mean there is nothing we can do about them. For example, Mealey shows that of the two kinds of psychopaths she distinguished, inveterate psychopaths are unmoved by programs that try to get them to appreciate the harm they do, but they may be responsive to surer punishments that induce them to behave more responsibly out of sheer self-interest. Conditional psychopaths, on the other hand, may respond better to social changes that prevent them from slipping through society's cracks."

These two sentences are discarding Fresco's argument that we can change criminals through control of environment and education so directly that actually any additional explanation would need. The only possible choice for him would be running away into even more implausible arguments like, for example, that the people became psychopaths because some failure of nourishment regulation. But these were debunked in the same book even more mercilessly. Steven Pinker is not saying about his personal opinion. He's just introducing us recent theories of science. And according to these recent theories, psychopathy is a cheating strategy that evolved by frequency-dependent selection.

One may ask here. Why Peter Joseph and Jacque Fresco argue exactly opposite things from modern science and call them science? Perhaps it may be just because they are liars. But there is another hypothesis. It's that they are being influenced more by anthropologists who lived in the early twentieth century like Margaret Mead than by modern scientists. (Actually Margaret Mead was one of few people who were citied in Zeitgeist: Moving Forward with name. Derek Freeman exposes how poor research her arguments are base on in his book, Margaret Mead and Samoa) Instead of theories of modern science, opinions of anthropologists of the early twentieth. This was substance of Fresco's alleged "science." If this exposure is not enough to make you completely distrust everything Jacque Fresco and Peter Joseph say about science, let's see more direct declaration.

The issue is not whether we can change human behavior, but at what cost. Since we are not just products of our environments, there will be costs. People have inherent desires such as comfort, love, family, esteem, autonomy, aesthetics, and self-expression, regardless of their history of reinforcement, and they suffer when the freedom to exercise the desires is thwarted. Indeed, it is difficult to define psychological pain without some notion of human nature. (Even the young Marx appealed to a "species character," with an impulse for creative activity, as the basis for his theory of alienation.) Sometimes we may choose to impose suffering to control behavior, as when we punish people who cause avoidable suffering in others. But we cannot pretend that we can reshape behavior without infringing in some way on other people's freedom and happiness. Human nature is the reason we do not surrender our freedom to behavioral engineers.

Quotations like this could be continued indefinitely. Even Fresco's language theory that it is the determiner of what is imaginable to the most of people turns out to be false claim. (In fact, Fresco's theory that the conflict between "Jewish people" and "Nazis" is because of their different usage of language and that "the Democrats cannot communicate meaningfully with the Republicans" because of their different language is so silly, it's true that we don't even need a scientific evidence to criticize it.) Finally, after classifying political visions into two categories, Utopian Vision and Tragic Vision, Pinker judges modern science might reveal that Tragic Vision is right.

Pinker's conclusion may be too hasty. But it's an undeniable fact that modern science is even more hostile to collectivism than we usually think. There was a time when intellectuals like Hayek had to complain that scientists and technical experts fall into collectivism so easily because of there ignorance about economics. Now the situation was changed. It's because that collectivistic solutions are turn out to be not plausible not only from an economic point of view but also from a scientific point of view.

Perhaps the most fundamental attack on central planning was made in the field of statistical physics which is my major. The arguments that the theories of complex system and self-organization discredited 'reductive' methodology of science are of course wrong, but they were at least enough to discredit the arguments like that the only way to apply scientific method on society is to control the usage of every resource using some computer program with top-down method. Nobody would think that we can manage an ecosystem more scientifically by controlling every material circulation. We come to be able to say the same thing to not only to a society, but also to every emergent complex system. Emergence and complexity which artificial life programs evolving by themselves show discarded the idea that a planned order can be more elaborate than a spontaneous order in turn. Above all things, the meaning of scientific management was changed. When we say about management of a complex system, it does not mean giving an artificial order anymore. It means, as the experimenters of the biosphere II experiment had tried though they were failed, making conditions in which a spontaneous order can operate successfully. It was just as Hayek's idea.

The fact that incomparably more professional scientists than Jacque Fresco are opposing their collectivistic solutions is very important especially in debate with supporters of The Venus Project. At least we would be able to debate with them after their weird sense of superiority that they are special because they are using scientific methodology. If they deny whole modern genetics and socio-biology, as I already pointed out at 9-54~61, their contradiction becomes clear.

It's true that criticism based on economics is important than anything else. But we don't have to be obsessed with it. Surprising ignorance about modern genetics of Brandy Hume who may already have debated with many critics of The Venus Project made me think differently. Sometimes, let's refute supporters of The Venus Project with a thing they love - Science. Of course, ultimately, the refutation would have to be done in every aspect because The Venus Project is wrong in every aspect. My subject is about where we should have to start.



[1] The strategy of these charitable non-profit institutions is exactly what I want to call economic suicide. Imagine an enterprise which blindly supplies its goods at ridiculously low price in order to "monopolize the market" though being a newcomer who has less resources and bases than its competitors. Perhaps enterprises may have to lower their prices almost to 0 in economic crisis, too. But it can't make them suffer more than the non-profit institutions which have to supply their goods at a price of 0. It's true that even these non-profit institutions can actually survive in some collectivists' weird assumption that there is no the cost of production. But if there is no cost of production, enterprises would survive even easier. (How many times I have to say this? Automation can't cause economic breakdown or unemployment. See my essay Does automation create unemployment?)