This is my first post and a two-part series. The first half covers basic income and its effects while the second part deals with the Serbian-born genius Nikola Tesla. The two are linked in more ways than not, both by the scope of their ambitions and their service to mankind’s advancement in the Universe. I hope you enjoy!
You may have already heard of Basic Income. The movement is spreading rapidly both online and amongst lawmakers, to the point where it is being officially considered in places like Finland, Netherlands, Switzerland, now Canada and more. But in case you haven’t heard, here’s what it is: it’s a model of redistributing money by giving a monthly remittance to every citizens regardless of one’s employability. It’s free money for everyone, basically. Sounds too good to be true?
Part I: Imagine.
What would you do if you received a monthly allowance of $1,500 unconditionally from the government. Well, do you currently have a job? If so, do you enjoy it? If yes, the basic income (BI) would be added on top of your salary similar to a monthly bonus. If not, you have a chance to reconsider your career, and spend some time to think about what matters to you or even pursue your passion without having to sacrifice it for necessity.
New Economy: Healthy; Sustainable & Emancipatory.
Whenever basic income is mentioned nowadays, there is much focus about job security and automatization that is slowly (but surely) eating away labour workforce across industries. In fact, according to a 2015 white paper on technological disruption published by Bank of America, the number of industrial robots have gone up by 72% in the last decade, while US manufacturing jobs have gone down by 16% and the trend isn’t likely to end there.
It likely won’t stop at manufacturing either. In fact, with the recent victory of Google’s AI AlphaGo against former Go Champion Lee-Sedol, it’s well way on its course to dominate other industries, including services and even in creative fields (no need to be afraid, yet). Though this may be disconcerting to some, here’s why we should be happy about this.
- Robots will work so we won’t have to. More time for us to think and feel.
- Machines are more efficient and productive than we are, in turn driving the costs and prices down. Self-driving vehicles may cut-down traffic; save gas and lives.
- Working in synergy with machines towards solving Big Goals: Climate Change, Scarcity & Poverty.
- Towards a paradigm-shift in mankind: self-actualization & unity.
So how exactly are we going to transition from a work-centered lifestyle to this post-labour world? The answer of course, is through a basic income. While the immediate effects of BI are apparent (short-term security), the importance is the longer-term and gradual shift in consciousness that will arise: Basic Income’s effect would be felt way beyond to influence every aspect of our lives, from what we expect out of our work, our lives and a much more inclusive model allowing every individual to be engaged in their communities. Arts will likely flourish like never before; people not afraid of pursuing what matters to them and most importantly, there should be incentives to pool talents to form the next-generation of leaders to tackle the big problems like the next energy source or ending malnutrition.
Part II: Looking at Mankind The Nikola Tesla way.
“The day science begins to study non-physical phenomena, it will make more progress in one decade than in all the previous centuries of its existence.”-N. Tesla
One of my most inspiring persona in History is the Serbian-born visionary and inventor Nikola Tesla (1856-1943). While notoriously undervalued, Tesla was a man of integrity and a Humanist above everything all. His vision, much like basic income’s, was ambitious and universal: to allow everyone in the World to access limitless amounts of clean-electricity from the surrounding air (what’s referred to as quantum-vacuum-field) by simply hooking up an apparatus he invented called the Magnifying Transmitter made of a giant Tesla coil that excites the air by passing it through a very high-voltage current in order to then send and receive this energy wirelessly, to then power utilities(similar to how a radio receives information through RF waves).
“The Problem of Increasing Human Energy”
At the turn of the century in 1900, Nikola Tesla published a book on his views regarding human progress and the directions it was taking. While it would take me a whole day to describe in the details, he compares Mankind to a unit (mass) which is acted upon by a force. And then states three ways of increasing Human Energy as described further down. Here’s a glimpse into the visionary mind and an idea of his description about Mankind:
“Though we may never be able to comprehend human life, we know certainly that it is a movement, of whatever nature it be. The existence of movement unavoidably implies a body which is being moved and a force which is moving it. Hence, wherever there is life, there is a mass moved by a force. All mass possesses inertia, all force tends to persist. Owing to this universal property and condition, a body, be it at rest or in motion, tends to remain in the same state, and a force, manifesting itself anywhere and through whatever cause, produces an equivalent opposing force, and as an absolute necessity of this it follows that every movement in nature must be rhythmical.” -Nikola Tesla (The Problem of Increasing Human Energy, 1900)
The diagram above illustrates the three ways of increasing energy as described below (Mass represents Us)
1. Increasing Human mass
This one is fairly logical. Put it simply: By increasing the mass of human life, aka providing proper nutritional food to every single person on the planet. In doing so, we would increase the Human mass through abundant production of food and a healthy lifestyle, therefore increasing its force. “But how” you ask? Tesla had plans to extract the nitrate abundant in the air. Roughly 70% of our atmosphere’s composition is nitrate, followed by 20% oxygen and others. Using a process today called air separation to fertilize the soil and plant massive fields of vegetables.
2. Reducing the force retarding Human mass
“There can be no doubt that, of all the frictional resistances, the one that most retards human movement is ignorance.” -N.Tesla
The second option to increase Human energy is by reducing the counter-force that acts opposingly to it. While we may feel as if the Internet age and recent technological advances has turned us to ever-smarter humans, we should be careful not to confuse knowledge with understanding. The former is what I would refer to as our ability to intellectually grasp a concept, while the latter could only be best described as intuition. More subtle, and yet infinitely superior. It is not a product of conscious reasoning but rather a focused awareness and perhaps transcendental in its origins. And yet, today we are constantly bombarded with mass-media and other distractions to the point of spiritual exhaustion. One would say, the difference between knowledge and escapism has become a very thin line. And because knowledge possesses an element of dogma (relying on processed memory), it is fundamentally incompatible with freedom and meaningful progress, which is lacking in our societies. Today’s scientific progress has become ephemeral in nature and detached from observable experiences. It has in effect become dogmatic. And yet, the recent progress in electronics are real and tangible, but yet they offer only incremental changes in comparisons to the last century many giant leaps. After all, where are the flying cars using antigravity technology we’ve been promised, how long since we last found a new energy source? Can time-travel exist? And above all, how can there still be starving people, not just amongst Developing nations but in our very streets! My next entries will be based on how such giant leaps have occurred and yet not made use of publicly.
“But however ignorance may have retarded the onward movement of man in times past, it is certain that, nowadays, negative forces have become of greater importance. Among these there is one of far greater moment than any other. It is called organized warfare. When we consider the millions of individuals, often the ablest in mind and body, the flower of humanity, who are compelled to a life of inactivity and unproductiveness, the immense sums of money daily required for the maintenance of armies and war apparatus, representing ever so much of human energy, all the effort uselessly spent in the production of arms and implements of destruction, the loss of life and the fostering of a barbarous spirit, we are appalled at the inestimable loss to mankind which the existence of these deplorable conditions must involve. What can we do to combat best this great evil? -N. Tesla
The 20th-century has no doubt been crippled by some of the deadliest events that happened, which led to the transformation of civilizations that we are today part of. But have things really changed? While I will reserve my opinions on this matter for now, between the endless wars raged against ideology (aka terrorists, as opposed to nations) and our totally amoral attitude towards it (like invading Iraq and later admitting it was based on a mistake) we have entered an era of perpetual conflict. Fifteen years since the attacks on 9/11, the terrorism-scarce is still much-alive and prosperous.
3. Increasing the force accelerating Human mass – Harnessing the Sun’s energy
“Of the three possible solutions of the main problem of increasing human energy, this is by far the most important to consider, not only because of its intrinsic significance, but also because of its intimate bearing on all the many elements and conditions which determine the movement of humanity.”-N. Tesla
Last but not least, Nikola Tesla’s contribution to the problem of Energy is best known for his discovery of the Alternating Current (AC) which, needless to say created the world as we now know. What is less known and perhaps the source of controversy are his discoveries from 1890s onwards towards what Tesla referred to as “extracting the energy from the ambient”. Tesla wasn’t so much referring to solar panels as he was about a more fundamental and abundant source of fuel which he believed was present all around us, including all throughout the Universe.
Myth and Reality
In a seminal talk before the American Institute of Electrical Engineers (AIEE) in May 1891 at Columbia College in New York City, Tesla spoke these telling words: “Of all the forms of nature’s immeasurable, all-pervading energy, which ever and ever change and move, like a soul animates an innate universe, electricity and magnetism are perhaps the most fascinating. . .We know that electricity acts like an incompressible fluid; that there must be a constant quantity of it in nature; that it can neither be produced or destroyed. . .and that electricity and ether phenomena are identical.” – Nikola Tesla
Undoubtedly, many of you reading this will jump in horror at my acknowledgement of the aether (sometimes called ether but not to confuse with the chemical compound). This all-pervading fluid substance filling the Universe is the aether and it is described as the source fuel for all existing forces, including electricity and gravity (and I believe what physicists call Weak & Strong Force). I will have to write another post to get into more details but this is perhaps the greatest insight of this century (or the last one indeed)! In fact, you may have heard of the recently discovered Higgs Field, which is not unlike the concept of an aether.
So what was Nikola Tesla referring to in respect with the aether? It is well-documented that Tesla had found a way to pump this electricity from the surrounding air using high-voltage electricity using what we now know as the famous Tesla coils. In other words, with this apparatus, one could potentially allow anyone anywhere at anytime to put to use this electric energy. And did it work? There’s a lot of reasons to believe Tesla actually had an electric car back in the 30s.
I have considerable reason to believe so and in fact, I am great advocate of researching into the field of zero-point-energy as a potential source of electricity. Again, this will have to wait for another entry.
Conclusion: My Point
I started by advocating the implementation of Basic Income policies within our societies to eradicate insecurity, scarcity, and poverty. BI also makes the most sense in a time where World trends change as quickly as the next iPhone, where flexibility is a necessity to adapt. But most of all, it is the right thing to do, and one that would provide the most decency to everyone. It will not only free individuals financially but spiritually, allowing the people to think of what matters for themselves and to work on solving the challenges we’re facing by collaborating in unprecedented scales, instead of competing. It would cost a fraction of the Panama Papers tax-free money recently discovered to implement this in no-time.
Thank you for reading all along my long first post and whether you agree or disagree with me, please leave a comment for discussion. These are topics I deeply care about and I cannot do it alone.