View Single Post
Old 11-26-2018, 04:10 PM
Danny B Danny B is online now
Platinum Member
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: L.A. Ca.
Posts: 4,728
C. H. Smith, optimization and adaptibility

I wrote about post-scarcity economics. It is the darling child of people who sit behind desks and plan out how to save the world. The deplorables would see things differently. Along with resource depletion, we have falling solar energy output and falling population. Add in failing ocean populations and soil depletion. Automated labor may be post-scarcity but, many other things are definitely scarce.
John Tainter writes in The Collapse of Complex Societies that energy and resource over-shoot are usually the root cause.

Charles Hugh Smith writes an interesting article about optimization and adaptability.
"There are two basic drivers of systemic erosion, drivers that have little to do with leadership or policy. Our current delusion is that changing leaders and tweaking policies are enough to stave off systemic erosion, decline and collapse.
The first is the gradual decline in the system's ability to adapt to changing circumstances. Life's core asset is the ability to evolve and adapt, and organisms, species and systems which fail to adapt fast enough and effectively enough to rapid change disappear.
Today's modern complex systems are typically optimized to specific conditions, meaning that they've evolved (or been designed) to maximize production and output given a certain set of inputs and processes.
If those conditions shift outside the expected parameters, the system's efficiency and output are heavily eroded.
The vast majority of modern systems are heavily optimized in ways outsiders typically can't appreciate.

"The path to sudden collapse is paved by increasingly narrow optimization. Adaptability and optimization are on a see-saw: as a general rule, adaptability requires flexibility, buffers and redundancies that are costly to maintain. So in a world driven by efficiencies in service of maximizing profits, these costs have been ruthlessly eliminated from complex systems. The adaptability of optimized systems is very low
The second dynamic is the gradual rigging of the system to reward insiders, at the expense of its purported purpose and output.

"Centralized hierarchies concentrate power and wealth in the hands of the few.Self-interest being what it is, these insiders naturally rig the system to protect insiders from criticism, reductions in budgets, etc.
In other words, the very structure of our systems guarantees their failure once conditions change beyond their limited ability to adjust.
To avoid decline and collapse, we need to develop new localized structures optimized for resilience and adaptability--a flexible, decentralized, sustainable, democratic, opportunity-for-all nation."
oftwominds-Charles Hugh Smith: The Two Paths to Collapse

Climate change driven by our failing magnetosphere will push a lot of things out side the current optimized path. The low birth-rate and demographic crash can NO way be reconciled with the expectations of pension programs. Climate change has brought floods to the desert and, drought to fertile areas. ALL of this supplies the backdrop to a finance system that had taken advantage of the working man just because it could. The finance world has drifted (was pushed) out of it's optimised path. The physical world has entered an extremely weak solar cycle at the same time that the pole shift is accelerating. I suspect that all of this is far too much change for us to adapt to when the power brokers are trying to maintain the status quo and their power & control.
Reply With Quote