GreenStar Relief would be the arm of the GreenStar Community Cooperative that provides personal relief services to resident stockholders of CIC communities and their dependents. It would also manage disaster relief for CIC communities and disaster and humanitarian relief for other communities around the Earth.
Aspiring to cultivate a more advanced civilization than has been fostered today by other cultures, the communities of TMP would seek to instill a great sense of social responsibility among its citizens. This is critical for a society with ambitions of living in space because both quality of life and basic survival in that environment and in modest sized communities depends on reliably socially responsible behavior from all citizens. This ideal is expressed in many ways in the concepts of Foundation and its approach to real estate development and community management. But one of its greatest expressions would be in the GreenStar Community Cooperative concept and the basic objective of GreenStar Relief .
This department of the cooperative would seek to guarantee an effective minimum of standard of living life-long for any resident stockholder of any CIC community or their spouses or children who suffer from disability or injury. Fairness in the care of people with special needs would be measured not by equity in spending as is common in the present but by equity in resultant quality of life. This goal is summed-up in the simple phrase; no one left behind, no cracks to fall through. While this may seem an unattainable goal given the standards and apparent struggles of primitive social services bureaucracies in much of the western world, the communities of TMP will have many things to help them in pursuing this.
It is a plain –if often denied– fact that poverty and homelessness in most of the world are deliberate. Barring the effects of natural disaster, they have always been the product of some form of social exploitation and today exist as a direct by-product of a culture and economic system which institutionalizes social Darwinism in the name of profit. We have thus been stuck with a society divided into ‘productive’ and ‘unproductive’ segments where the unproductive are reduced to being wards of a state which tries to manage their needs in typical ‘industrial’ fashion but often only creates an illusion of compassion while attempting euthanasia by proxy. Politicians and bureaucrats have ten thousand excuses for the deliberate inadequacy of social services when the ultimate truth is a latent irrational fear of being overwhelmed by an underclass and an essential cultural disrespect for human life that our earliest human ancestors would have considered barbaric.
But the culture fostered in the communities created by TMP is likely to realize a remarkable achievement as a matter of course; the elimination of world poverty. It will accomplish this through the realization of technologies and habitat designs which make salaries an option rather than a necessity by creating new and expanding opportunities for independent industry, and therefore will make that pseudo-Darwinian competition for jobs –and by extension survival– illogical. Technologies which allow people to realize a basic comfortable standard of living by very convenient –eventually effortless– subsistence labor and casual barter within a steadily shrinking circle of community. An evolution that leads, ultimately, to a resource-based economy and eventually total, effortless, personal self-sufficiency. The point to pursuing such an objective in the context of TMP is simple enough; colonization of space cannot ultimately be rationalized economically. There is no profit in the settlement of the galaxy for there can never be routine communication between the stars beyond information. One must pursue and invest in colonization for cultural reasons. A society cannot speculatively invest in that goal if it is forever squandering its time and resources just to feed and house itself. Profit is ultimately the margin on human labor and a huge amount of personal productivity is sacrificed in the pursuit of salary income. No one ever gets paid what they’re time is really worth and the time we could recover were we able to meet even some of our daily consumer needs by our own artifice is huge given the full benefit of even current technology to leverage it. Once largely freed from dependence upon ‘other people’s money’, a society would have vast time and resources to invest in more important pursuits.
Consequently, the supposed ‘unproductive’ segment of a population shrinks to nil in such a culture and the rolls of the functionally disabled shrink as the bar of skill and ability needed to meet one’s daily needs steadily lowers. Eventually, the only truly ‘disabled’ people that may be left in the future will be the untreatably mentally ill or extremely mentally disabled and those in a persistent vegetative state –a population so small that the overhead of voluntary support from family and/or community for their needs at as high a quality of life as one might imagine under the circumstances would be virtually inconsequential. Long-term, with the benefits of medical nanotechnology and the prospects of neural interfacing, even this tiny portion of the population may virtually disappear.
This, of course, cannot be achieved quickly. A long evolution of community and culture must accompany a long evolution in Post-Industrial technology to accomplish this ideal. In the mean time, TMP’s communities would have to rely on cooperative efforts organized across local communities and the super-community of all Foundation CIC settlements. The social services problem seems huge because the Industrial Age bureaucratic systems created to address this issue lump the whole population of disabled people into a single faceless mass while making them virtually invisible within their own communities and absolving the ‘productive’ population of any direct responsibility for the disabled within their communities. In reality, the percentage of the population in need of help is tiny and could easily be addressed were people compelled toward a sense of responsibility for their communities and the people around them. In the TMP community the situation of each person in need of aid would be handled on a personal case-by-case basis by their local communities with assistance from the larger GreenStar Relief network where needed. This network would not function like a bureaucracy which doles out money. It would function as a trouble-shooting system –an engineering team– where an individual’s needs are addressed in a whole manner with the intent of realizing definitive solutions in the form of work venues, adaptive technologies, and adaptive living environments.
In its role as a manager of disaster and international relief efforts, GreenStar Relief would rely on this growing time and resource dividend to provide a cross-community pool of on-demand resources to direct to emergency situations among both TMP communities and the world at large. Initially, capabilities here will be very limited. But as the number and scale of communities grows, collectively they will represent a resource pool as large as any major western nation –perhaps as large as the entire European Union. This collective community will have great surpluses with which to address world problems –surpluses that will steadily increase with its advance in Post-Industrial technology. Marshal Savage saw the Aquarius phase as very important in this. He realized that the potential of marine colonies as producers of bulk energy and food was so tremendous as to radically alter world economics, eliminating the problem of hunger worldwide. But by also disseminating its Post-Industrial technologies, TMP has the potential to transform the global culture, giving people everywhere the means to free themselves from the shackles of economic exploitation.
This is, again, very relevant to the goal of space colonization. We entered the 21st Century on the cusp of a new golden age, but squandered it through cultural shortsightedness, corporate avarice, bigotry, political stupidity, and the drag of their inevitable ‘blowback’ reverberating across globe like the ringing of a bell and expressing itself in myriad ways. The world today is like an open barrel of live crabs in an Asian market. Shop owners in these markets know they don’t have to worry about crabs escaping from an open barrel because every time one of them reaches to get out, others behind it will reach up to drag it back down in their own vain attempt to escape. A little cooperation would get them all out easily, but they’re crabs and they can’t reason. This is the character of the world we live in at the start of this new millennium. If we do not address the issues of the world as a whole, there will be no moving beyond it.