Sunday, August 26, 2007
If you are an egalitarian ("All persons are equal"), and a non-wastrel ("meet your physical needs without waste"), then you will be likely to be a believer in natural ecology. The trick will be to use surplus organic material that is naturally produced in natural ecosystems as a raw material in automatic factories that produce foodstuffs. There is no reason to believe that that can't be done because there was a long period in our evolutionary lifetime where we lived by gathering. All we need to do is gather that surplus that the earth produces that is surplus to reproducing an equilibrium ecosystem, which can be done using robots, and converting that into tasty and healthful foodstuffs. We developed farming as a way to allow us to increase our population, but that had unintended byproducts like stratification, war, religion, and the like. It also caused us to grow things that were easy to produce in quantity, like grains, to the detriment of soils; and to produce things like animal flesh, that were costly to produce and thus suitable for status symbols. If we don't have profit or stratification as a motive we can invent ways of creating food from the surplus of whatever grows.